Waning Hymn (to my Uncle)

There was no grace and no wind,
no solemn vow, no soft goodbye.

But there was a light,
and there was a door.

I knelt there for awhile,
it would lead me far from you,
it would lead me beyond death,
far from memory and from time.

But as I knelt I saw below,
beyond matter, beyond gravity
and I saw life well-loved
and love well-lived.

I raise my eyes, and I see no more.
I leave as I once came before

A moon filters from the east
and soil engulfs what once was me.

The End of Memory

There was a moment’s hesitation, and I felt the wind whisper softly from behind. The sky was gray, the air felt gray, and time was slow. The years felt like slow pools of thread growing fast before me, wrapping up my mind in their dizzying array. Sometimes, I feel like I made up certain things, as if certain things could not be real. I remember the warm sun, I remember summer and the heat. I remember the skin of little tart oranges and the sour juices running down my chin. I remember vast, wide trees but here they are, only a few feet above me.

And things change, I have changed. This world of worlds within my head has changed.

I’ll tell you a secret, maybe it will reach you. I don’t dream of you anymore. I dream of others, of strange prophecies I never remember.

Sometimes I turn, and I begin to wonder, but then I forget and I forge on. Different characters make up this new dreamscape, women and thieves, and strange, mechanical things.

I’ll tell you another secret, and this one will never reach you. I have been waiting for you, I wait you for you. I return and hope and wish I’ll see you. I wonder what you’ll say, I daydream of how you’ll look, what you’ll say, if you’ll even recognize me. And here I am, dreaming of something and I can’t remember your name. I’ve often thought you were the one, I’ve thought that once I met you again, once I’d remembered then everything would change.

I keep thinking I’ll have you again. But, my dreams have changed. You haven’t plagued my subconscious for months, you have not plagued the creases of my bed, the whispers between words unsaid.

My sweet love, whom I’ve never seen since I turned thirteen. You are remembered in the words between my stories and the unrequited passions of angsty teens, but, my dreams have changed and I must grow with them.

I waited for you, but…I don’t think I need to anymore.

And a wind gathered before me. Pools of soft thread gathered and weaved themselves ’round me, embracing rather than choking. I cannot make out one memory from the rest, they remain in silent, chaotic array. I feel the years of time wind their hands ’round my distant memories of you. And I remember silent secrets shared between rusted gate. I remember stories shared and never touching. I remember forgetting you, and wishing I’d remembered, at least long enough to…I see you standing at fourteen, only yards away from me. A moment’s hesitation and I move on. I will move on, and we walk away.

Haunt

I felt through the ashes of this dragon’s keep, sifted through ancient treasures and ancient djinns.
Here, I thought I felt old whispers lick and scratch at fingertips.
I glance upwards, the old tapestry wailing in dim moonlight.
I thought I felt blue eyes press deep and down, breaking nerve and sinew.
I felt through the cracked linseed of this dragon’s keep, sifted through forgotten treasures, regret and dream.
And here, I thought I heard the whisper of a name, an old tune grown old with age.
I thought I heard your soft fingers chink through metal gate.
I felt through ancient stains of this dragon’s keep, through moth-mottled treasures, secret memories falling away.
Here, I thought I saw the faded dream of a figure, old sunlight glare and shimmer.
I glance down, a withered gray of wrinkled age.
And here is where color fades, memories turn, and old age yearns.
A candle rests far to the left of me, and do I wait or do I dream?

Entrance

Silent fog and down the street
nights grow long. There you’ll meet
Death’s lady captor. Speak
of things you haven’t learned, erstwhile
she’ll listen and complete the story
as you forget. Do not stop for tea
and do not stop for sleep, pause,
only, you may hear whispering,
do not think of what it could be
and begin back your tale, cautiously
imply the boon of Life, no greater thing
than it and of itself, no greater boon
than to walk away, continue ‘bout your day.
She will stare curiously.
Tap you finger, one, two, three,
scratch your neck and snap your knee,
lick your eye and bend nostrils wide,
then call on Lady Life.
And suddenly, blue gray fog comes,
polite and sweet, it takes your chair.
You wake up,
you were always here.

Restful

Tales lit from across the East
Breathless, heartless entreaty
for those who’ve felt Time’s treasured hand,
for those who’ve danced with Death again.

Gilded corridors lost their captor.
She sleeps on the highest tower.
Still and quiet,
breathless, silent.

Calm flutters of Time pursue,
even torment her dreams
and on and on Death creeps
along. Each step and stairwell,
collecting but abiding
by the wild witches spell.

She dreams of him
beneath Time’s loving hand,
she waits for him,
knowing this the end.

No kiss to waken,
no warm touch, forsaken
within endless slumber.
Steadily does she give in,
patiently following
where others are due.

Spool and thread collect against bare skin,
tugging red, and black, and blue,
slowly knitting their way through.

Blood collects,
and pages furl,
slipping away
as Time turns still,
the final clock clicks.
Death kisses her
and all is well.

Bend and Bow

Solemn entreaty, those who’ve left,
shadows fade, bitterness remains.

There was talk of fragile things.
Secrets stored away in three’s.

Depart the way you came before,
I accompany to Nevermore.

I heard a candle wick.
Secrets bite and scratch and lick.

I heard life burst and bloom
I heard dreams sway and swoon,
dance and fall to Death.

The final boom
reminds them of before
you left to Nevermore.

Fabrics crease and tuck away.
Depart the same way you came.

There was talk of fragile things,
parting shadows came and kissed me.

Minds stoop and sigh and
recollect tonight.

Memory bends Eternally
Life and love pass Eternity.