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Sunday, May 30, 2010

A DREAM OF YOU, Desert Vision, A Poem in Four Parts, Rewrite

Desert Vision, A Poem in Four Parts, Rewrite

Sweetheart, I know you love me.
I know you appreciate the poetry.

For three years now I have struggled,
Wanting to write an epic,
A great, big, love poem about us,

I sought to post the way this thing of ours went
Right from the start, all banners unfurled,
How time marshals forces
Though we go about our daily business,
And children are born, and as they grow up, think,
Believe fervently they are meant for one thing
To discover later, underneath it all,
A new world order sweeps away the old,
And the fulfillment of prophecy remains unknown,
Until the actual event transpires,
The Word takes on meaning after the fact,

Headlines acclaim events;
Yet history proves otherwise, often, something other,
Although the finite first meet the eye,
Spirit alights, it writes the script,
The real story line lies beyond
Those first-glance tales of human endeavor.

We intend to do one thing, but, many times, later,
Discover, unwittingly we do another.


Today I write, declare the moment
Yes, I say that is the way,
The way, it had actually had happened.

Now consider, should you desire,
How I dedicate this verse to you;
It tells a tale about things
That had transpired before I had met you,
Or could have had inkling of your name!

I include you in geography,
You had not experienced, an earth, whereupon
Your feet had never trod.

Where do I get the nerve?
-- The actual gall of me, hey! --
To affirm this poem, claim it our story,
That I have written note to events,
Which include your presence, decades,
Long before our hearts belonged one to the other?

In truth, the matter propels me, no choice,
I do what destiny would have me do.

I found these words,
I had inked them once,
On lined, yellow, perforated sheet,

‘I sit at the desk, night after night,
And sometimes, it's even day and night,
Often I write on topics, quotidian and small,
On matters of no special interest,
Issues, which critics in essays declare,
Lack propriety and moment,
And do not belong to sphere of poetic ambition.

Now years have passed,
And choice less still, I write.’

Earlier today, I had packed up your mail,
Readied the address to Coral Gables,
And when you later called and asked
How I was doing, me, under compulsion’s demand,
Lonely, slave to love and ardent desire,
I answered 'pathetic.'

No one else will have me.

It as though I have some terrible pox;
Other women see it and shun me.

My mirror image, though, it is you,
I cram my schedule, insufficient time,
The day wants the hours,
I have endless lists ‘To Do’.

I isolate terribly, talk to no one for the week,
And when friends telephone call, I rush them off!
Honest! No time for idle talk, or chat.
No choice! I return to my desk.

I dread any date for lunch.
I pass on evening engagements.
Sorry! I want only you.

I just want to be with you.

Yet I have that other side,
More than everyday necessity and much more
Than simple expression of my love for you
A confidence I wish to share with you and world,
About how I always knew that you were the girl for me,
Though I came to comprehend it, my great love,
The singular fact, only after the event;

I believe I might say it right,
Watch me now, and let’s see if I say it right!


I remember Central Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona,
Danny’s store packed with Native American silver,
Bracelets, necklaces and rings, properly displayed
On racks, in trays, locked within showcases,
And on clear shelves, velvet pads, the array of colors,
Alexander, my son, maybe eight, but not more than ten,
His years of age, playing behind the counters,
Next to the shotguns, diagonally propped,
On the floor twelve-gauge shells in open boxes,
Ready, should there be an extended engagement.

I share with you the times when, flying in
From Dallas, the grand noise, engines’ reversal
To land at Sky Harbor, the ground crew,
How they scrambled, and then, rolled up the staircase,
The platform for debarkation, and me, I would descend
The steps full-tilt straight onto the tarmac,
Fahrenheit, ninety-five degrees in early morning,
A rental car awaited me, and I was off
Over to the parking lot at the Dog Track,
To the swap meet that was unfolding and I sought
The cowboy named, Roadrunner, who always had
Tons of loot, the goods, every Sunday’s hauls.

Though at this point, it, more dream than reality,
I recall the very special meeting, when traders
Lined up, raised hands, and one after the other,
Volunteered to say that jewelry great here and
Proclaimed that whosoever is welcomed into
The lounge camper, who greets the Navajo,
Both the man and wife, with eyes at slight, diverted,
And who knows that the children divine a pattern,
From their running across the gravel lot, left and right,
Up and down, then unto the asphalt sidewalk,

That person, who enjoys when they stop to refresh from
The water-cooled, stainless steel, floor-pedal fountain,
The bright sparkling, that eye of the desert,

The stream which gushed upward, next to,
It was on the right side of the pari-mutuel windows.

Upon that person, who bore witness to the design,
Who abstracted anagram from within
All the children’s scurry, who traced,
Out upon the open parking space, meaning,
Who was brought to new vision,
Who was able to see within the minds’ eye, the dance,
The dance holy ones once danced in godly regalia,
That person, who heard within the children’s feet
The drums, the rhythms ancestors had orchestrated,
So to let go, leave this material world,
And find entrance to separate reality,
The traders at the meeting, in-order, one-by-one,
Both arms raised up on high, head flung back,
Palms stretched and fingers spread wide apart,
As though they pressed upon the sky,
Called upon Great Talking God to sanctify their wish,

It was at that moment
They bestowed their most precious title,
And between the ghosts and the human beings
The word rang and cemented the union, ‘Friend’.

One Sunday afternoon, I felt good magic
When a child ran up behind me,
He quickly, then, touched the back of my hand.


Later I met a Mexican friend up on South Mountain.
His house was painted a bright, distinctive blue.
I bought more jewelry and got into my car,
I took the Express Way North, exited at Bell Road,
And headed to way out West of the city.

At one point, I passed the shopping mall,
I thought about Monday’s appointments,
How a salesman's lot means he sits,
Marks time to wait his turn with buyers.

That night on the concrete patio, the one surrounding
The big swimming pool, at Community Center,
I buck danced to beat, which played
On the rock an’ roll, radio station.

Although it was already that Sunday’s dusk,
And the day’s high temperature had receded,
It still was ninety, over ninety degrees while I sat back
On the lounge chairs and watched Alexander,
Time and again, practice dives off the high board.

Even then, it was long ago, and in Phoenix,
It was you! Darling, I had been waiting for you;
The desert air brought dream of you,
The shimmering, the uplifts, the vertical lines,
Up, upward, shafts of heat rising
Out across the desert vista,
Now I recognize it was a dream of you,
And this, my verse was racing,
Already galloping through my mind,
I managed to pull in the reins,
Then I hitched it up, tied it to the rail at the tip,
I hitched the reins at the tip of my tongue.

I was reciting poetry, not out loud, but to myself,
Though I knew not its power, no idea the prophecy,
I knew not the meaning of that woman, who I glimpsed,
Who walked out among the columns of earth fever,
And stood next to the Saguaros in the twilight,
Who appeared in an instance out on the horizon,
Seemingly, over and against the floor of the desert,
Before she disappeared leaving me to these lines,
Whose cadences I repeat from once upon a time
And now so long ago, today at key board,
These words I use to describe a dream of you.

Long before I had ever made your actual acquaintance,
I envisioned you a figure in landscape,
I saw you in time prior to when you were born.

At the airport, when security stopped me, I stood
In a booth whose sliding curtains dropped to the floor,
The jewelry I carried in my on-board luggage,
X ray showed a concentrated jumble of metal,
And as I awaited the woos and ahs of personnel,
When they opened my bags for inspection,
It was then that I began to wonder, and it remains
Fresh today, as if I describe events from yesterday,
It was then I began to wonder, when you,
When your love might saunter in, and make life complete.

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