poetry

LOSING (AND GAINING) MY PERSPECTIVE

 

Lost myself

Mostly in a good way

When retired

Got to play

Ukulele

Write poetry

And strumming-type songs

Found a new self

So I thought

But as long as I live

With another in my space

Nothing changes

Roommate in my face

Left early, first light

Hardly ever drive

But I drive to

A Burger King drive-through

Haven’t had cholesterol on croissant in years

But I do, while gulping the largest black coffee

Arguing with seagulls

It’s like I find myself

Back in pre-retirement

And no, not working

But yes, working

Blue Gulf, blue sky

White clouds

Gulls cry

I do too

So I type on my phone

Doing social media stuff

Drinking fast-cooling coffee

Sitting in steamy sun wearing black

Shirt and boots

Like some little dominatrix

But I’m not

Just want to look thinner

Even if it’s hot

Just want the security of being able

To kick an attacker in the shins

Wearing my vegan boots

If needed

But gotta go home sometime

Face the day

The reality show of my life

Wish I wasn’t so emotional

Must be my Moon in Cancer

Doesn’t harmonize with

My Sun in Aries

Id, Ego

Does it matter that my Superego

Is Libra Rising

Or do all these astrological influences

Keep me from moving forward

Growing up

Must say

Despite this beach being a small sandbox

It is finally quiet

And I’m decompressing

And I’m ready to return

Into the Now…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE:  Seagull staring at me, Green Key

THAUMATURGY

 

Sliver of gold

Separated from the Sun

Found the sandy ground

Sparkling electrons

Sliver of silver

Melted from the Moon

Remained warm and bright

Every night

Snuggled beside her solar knight

Wading through weeds

Alchemist captured them

In his samovars

Of gold and silver

The perfect night for his

Heart’s creation

Manipulating matter

From Solid to Liquid

To Gas to Plasma

Poured into a cup

Sniffing the bouquet

Deeply drinking

The essence of her being

As she grew from the Earth

Showered by the Water

Breathing the Air and

Glowing from the Fire

Splitting from his body

Transformed into a

Philosopher’s stone

Shattering like a delicate bird’s egg

Emerging into the dark

Projecting her daylight

Her moonlight

Capturing him

And enchanted,

He acquiesced,

For Love sees no matter

In chains…

 

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Samovars

TIME LAPSE

 

Air potatoes in indistinct moonlight

Like modern Winchcombe Grotesques

Fortifying the overgrowth of summer vines

Chills in the heat, dancing along my spine

Monstrous night

Dogs plastered to the fence

Growling at an undone rope

A rope unwound

Hanging on a spindly tree

Gulf Coast wind winding up to

A shrieking Banshee force

Is it the 3 a.m. heart attack

Or a dream

Can’t recall rolling out of bed

Sliding through the glass door

Suddenly soaking suede cloth boots

I think, Well, that feels real

Surreal similarity of when I was four

High on my uncle’s shoulders

Defying the Atlantic Ocean

Then slapped by a wave

Drowning

But still breathing

Under the sea

Thinking

Well, this is it

Then feeling him find me

Scoop me up

Carry me back to Atlantic City sounds

Of ice cream men walking the beach

Of children shouting, alive and laughing

All a blank after that, like now

And I fall on sleeping red-ant villages

On the beach of my back yard

Mosquitoes glued to skin welting up

My smallest dog jumps onto my back

As if we’re in bed

And suddenly my head

Clears in the darkness

Despite humidity and drizzle

It’s real, I rise

Clap my hands demanding the dogs to follow

Maybe they, as nocturnals, belong here

But no place for me

At three

In the unearthly morning

Of moon madness

Brought on, I surmise

From OD-ing on chamomile tea

And vomit-smelling valerian drops

All in the name of at least

A good two hours sleep

But back in the cool air conditioned bed

Insomniac thoughts reverberate in my head

How’d I get there without remembering

And, most importantly

Who hung that freaking rope

Who hung on it…

 

swamprope1

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGES: Rope in my swamp, medieval Winchcombe Grotesque

winchcombe grotesques

 

MELANCHOLIA

 

Now I know why

Van Gogh

Did yellow

Dressed in black

Like the crows

I seek succor

From the sun

Or at least

Its result of

Photosynthesis

Corn

Planted by Corvus

As they compete

With the squirrels

Dodge my dogs

Dropping kernels

That sink into the rainy

Earth

And I try to remember

This darkness will pass

I will see yellow again

As my aura soaks in

The balance of

Magical spectrums of

Vibrant colors…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Music and Madness

 

BABA O’RILEY NAKED

 

*scroll down for YouTube video*

 

Strumming The Who’s

Baba O’Riley

(Or Teenage Wasteland

As I always called it)

On an acoustic ukulele

Is like eating grapes

Rather than drinking wine

Yet the unfermented fruit

Intoxicates me anyway…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: My baritone ukulele

 

YouTube video: The Who, Baba O’Riley (with violin solo)

AVOCADO

 

Persea americana

Nutritious

Rhyming with delicious

One slit, twist, it’s all ready

Skin makes the perfect bowl

Scoop it with a spoon

Eat it standing up under the trees

While the birds peck sunflower seeds

No need for ice cream

(although…chocolate sauce…no, I won’t think about that)

Avocado for me!

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: My mid-morning avocado treat

WAKING-UP DREAM

 

Holding the Book of Illusion

Tied with nine knots

Containing the secrets

Of the Conqueror Worm

Welcoming me

Shades of Poe!

Human mortality

Inevitability of death

Is this a message?

Acculturation of dragons

The blood in my body:

German slave owners

Planting their seed

As the Gypsies stripped grapes

From the vines for wine

Further cross-cultural symbols

Existing for Romani, too

Maternal Kalderash word: Azdaja

Paternal Sinti word: Draxo

Oh, Poe!

Why do you bedevil me

In my sleep

With dragons, serpents, worms?

Once again I study the knots

What thoughts

Emotions

Incantations

Are woven throughout?

Binding the dance

Between life and death

But there is no depth

To the dream

After all, it doesn’t have to be a

Warning

Merely a reminder

Immortality spawned from

Fiction, rhyme

Live the best you can

Within finite time

A never-long-enough

Lifespan…

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: book & knot (cs)

 

 

PASSING ALONG THE POWER

 

*scroll down for a Tom Petty video*

Entwined in DNA

Dreams refusing to die

Whether for

Fortune

Fame

Freedom

We will grow legs

And crawl out of the muck

We will align with the greenery

And face the sun

We will rev up the engine

And drive forevermore

Movement

Physical or mental

Brings us to the border

O, we must refuse to

Hover between fantasy

And the real

Because

Those who dig the deepest

Wresting the treasure chest

From the Earth’s grasp

Those who claim the prize

Will inherit the future

The priciest double helix

To pass along

Singing the sacred song

Of a life well won…

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: My son B. Michael’s car

https://youtu.be/Qv4-m-cIZf4 YouTube video Running Down a Dream (Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers)

ORPHEUS’ SECOND CHANCE

 

Sometimes the talent doesn’t appear

Until age sculpts away the ego and fear

 

Son of Apollo and Calliope reborn

Worked at his craft, no time to mourn

 

One full moon night he found the power

Melodic tones delicate as a flower

 

Again he would seduce Hades and Persephone

And finally rescue his love Eurydice

 

Down to the Stygian Realm he traveled

Passing Cerberus he swiftly paddled

 

And there with gray hair and hands gnarled with age

He sang and played his love and rage

 

Music often dissolves the iciest heart

Hades would no longer keep them apart

 

The lovers left, holding hands

This time no caveat while leaving the darklands

 

Surfacing in woods lit from the dawn

Two old souls embraced and would live on

 

Magical music the curtain call

Perhaps it is true that love conquers all

 

© 2017 Clarissa Simmens (ViataMaja)

IMAGE: Orpheus and Eurydice, Anselm Feurbach 1869