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the cord is thinning
frayed and lost
that life line between you and me

where i once began in you and you in me, no ending
we finished each others dreams
no line between us
one body one mind
wrapped together in a single panoply against the hurt

the fabric that stretches against
the necessary division
now runs long

and lost itself to
dropped calls, tattered edges
leaky love

all the answers you gave
now question marks
unfinished, yearning

appendage
with vessels popped
bled out

the line
is stripped to strands now

billows about
losing the pieces that once made up the whole

our vine has raveled away
dissipated to the past
and i can hardly feel you
anymore

"Nobly" by Belinda Chlouber, is now showing at The Willard Arts Center in Idaho Falls, in her show "Words & Paint, A Collaboration with Family Writings." See more of her work at http://belindachlouber.com/

“Nobly” by Belinda Chlouber, is now showing at The Willard Arts Center in Idaho Falls, in her show “Words & Paint, A Collaboration with Family Writings.” See more of her work at http://belindachlouber.com/

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i observe two women at the table by the window

one like me and one like you

and i wish she were my mother

and that was me sitting across from you

i would watch and listen to you from across the table

like i see her do

watch you eat your soup

with crinkled lips

see your eyes make contact with me over your bifocals

your necklace dangling

i would take in the familiarity of your face, like mine

share a salad with you like two women would

passed would be the days when we would have been at odds

sharp words from opposite sides of the table

delivering judgment upon each other like passing stale bread across the dinner table

i watch your face look astray when you hear a word askew

marvel at your manners which once repelled me

and for the first time, not experience you as formidable but as someone who was once a vulnerable child

our conversation stops for a while as we sit together

mother and daughter, woman to woman

peers at the table of some restaurant on a Friday afternoon

the lines on your face and your delicate bones would reveal we are cultivating a new relationship, the beginning of you depending on me for a change, you leaning on me for advice

the woman in me resumes our conversation

and then i listen for some of me in you

my mother in me.

like these two women i hungrily spy upon

we would have certainly become friends by now.

"Love is Like" by Belinda Chlouber See more of Belinda's work at: http://www.tenfingers.com/

“Love is Like” by Belinda Chlouber
See more of Belinda’s work at: http://www.tenfingers.com/

this poem was recently published in Poems from Conflicted Hearts

1.
i’ll erect a facade hard and smooth
as we glide down this steel alley
weld my surface
so your broken glass words pass over me

steel my edge so your shards can’t cut
keep your words from needling their way
into my heart
shun the internal bleeding

that fills an ocean
between our crumbling shores

2.
i’ll watch him retreat behind that steel wall
he’s erected
to block my broken glass words
deflect the shards that i send to rip into him

feel the cold of his armor
that keep my words from cutting into his heart

watch him turn away from the internal bleeding
that fills an ocean
between our eroding shores

"Sock Fights" by Ginger Slonaker. See her website at http://www.gingerslonaker.com/

“Sock Fights” by Ginger Slonaker. See her website at http://www.gingerslonaker.com/

Dear Readers,

Just want to let you know about a new eBook which has just been published. Three of my poems (two never posted on this blog) are included, with River Ganges being featured in the promotional releases for this book, I am proud to say!

Click here to buy on Amazon or see Tayen Lane Publishing for other formats. Email me if you’d like a print book, we need a minimum of 100 to print, so I’m taking names.

Poems%20from%20Conflicted%20Hearts%20-%20Final

was when were high school
eyes still budding to open
feeling our way
precarious beginnings
universe green and bright in a town
too small and steely

he lived around the corner
played me records
and talked funny

my living room couch, late summer night
his sillouette
peter frampton hair
framed above me
his hard body, soft lips
waves like First Love unfolding

but father footsteps approach
so we unpeel joined skin quick-like
flash scene change, re-pose bodies
hide flushed cheeks rush heat
interrupts sweet fingers laced

so i walks you home so you could walks me back and you again
to stretch our goodbye like rock lizard heat
was alone except for spying crickets
on our midnight street still hot from the day

our chests beat a goodnight whisper
your shadow was to fade in wet texan air

was start of school year what drove me away
left you in night mist that stole you gone
cut short the wonder, the magic

and now my memory
stuck
with One honey taste
of our lost, soft
summer dream

Black is the New Red, courtesy of Boris Koodrin see his website at: http://boriskoodrin.com/index.html

Black is the New Red, courtesy of Boris Koodrin
see his website at: http://boriskoodrin.com/index.html

where is the salve for my heart
singed
like a love letter barely retrieved from a fire

holes where the words used to be
make incomplete sentences
where the poetry of love once spelled our song

where is the salve for the wound of blame
the ointment for the fire of pride
the soothing milk for the brand of righteousness
when only half charred words remain

can we piece back together
our letter dangling from my finger tips
this paper love so delicate
that so easily succumbs to flames…

where is the salve
to put your words back in my heart

Wilted Dahlia by Sarah Curtiss see more of Sarah's work at www.graceartgroup.com

Wilted Dahlia by Sarah Curtiss
see more of Sarah’s work at http://www.graceartgroup.com

his opening move was bold and drew her into the game
but love flares in unexpected ways
and a fair number of pawns were cleared out early on
piled like wish bones on the sidelines

she advanced a black bishop putting his white knight in jeopardy
he retreated his knight in an easy move and while avoiding eye contact, reached out to touch her hand
she withdrew her hand and charged her bishop ahead, chasing his knight

he made promises and she listened
but she did not change her position and found her Queen was blocked
by her own entourage, essentially trapped
the squares of their life did not move beyond the grid
were all marriages a tornado of limited moves?

his rook swept forward and captured her last bishop
she knew there would be no reparation
and retracted her knight

in a surprise move he took her Queen
she reflected back to the beginning, wondering if she had made the right move

he spoke less since everything he said was wrong
and she felt as helpless as her impounded Queen
the board grew cold, the mean lines cutting her off from him

he checked her king
then she checked his
knights jumped around the board in vain
castles and bishops drew lines that were erased
and drawn again

in desperation she marched a pawn forward in baby steps
bit her tongue and prayed
hoping to reach the Other Side, to win her Queen back

he played her, ignoring the pawn, letting her have the advantage
it was a simple move, yet it had the power to overcome blockades
…if he is not the Enemy, then who is he?

this time, she did not move her hand away when he reached over
her pawn reached the 8th row, winning her own Queen back
from this vantage point she saw past the black and white limits she had built to cut him out

64 squares and so many combinations
compromise is not a tactic of chess, but it is one of marriage
forgiveness is not a tactic of war
but it is a tactic of Love

a stalemate is a dead end of ideas
we are not just one dimensional pieces
we can let go of the boxed-in expectations built in our heads
we can change the rules
of our game

he castled his rook with his King
so that his white King now faced her black Queen
square to square
eye to eye.
then she saw
in spite of their battles

she was still his Queen
and he would always be
her King

Collecting Clowns for the Prince
by Lila Afiouni – see more of Lila’s art at: http://www.lilaafiouni.com/

i’m going to love you in all your messiness

release you from my “you didn’t turn out to be who you were supposed to be for me-ness”

i’m going to love you in my frustration

of watching you throw gasoline on your own life
and then cuss the line of fire

i’m going to love you in the face of watching your angst
and the impact of your bewildering choices

i’m going to love you for all the rest that you are too

your admirable indifference to establishment

your unique and brilliant mind

your tenderness and poetic heart

and the way you always try to be a hero

a champion to the underdog and teacher of all things

i’m just going to love you

for the rest of my life

Art Courtesy of Jim Blake

white out

 

when he’s gone…

the edges of the landscape

open and widen

 Room to Expand, Room to Repair

who am I without him, I get to ask myself

 and when he’s gone,

the quiet and the peace

the joy of having my space combined with
I miss him

emptying his pockets, my baby’s jeans

stretching their blue legs over the dog bed or dresser

I find his lozenges
a rubber band
receipts
endless receipts
and change…always loose change

when he’s away i organize, put things back

where they belong.
sift through our mingled lives

try to make sense. to make sense out of the disorder.

and the receipts
the endless receipts
where do I put them?

 I pile another slip of paper on the snowdrift of his desk

Sifting and shifting and folding the towels and touching his things

makes me miss him

cramming one more t-shirt into the too-full drawer

too many shoes

too many shirts

too many details…the paper trail of our lives.

and the receipts, why so many receipts?

swirling around my karma

the miscellaneous dimes and quarters

uncashed checks

folded up contracts. unsigned.
undelivered.

his receipts piling up inside of him

heavy luggage won’t go away

drawers stuffed to the gills with old stuff…he can’t put one more thing in

the drawers, his psyche

 tidying up now that he’s away

but I can’t clean his drawers or make his receipts go away

only he can do that.

 making order on only one side out of half the chaos.

batten down the hatches

peace is here

Peace is Here in this Madness

in this Misunderstanding

In this Disconnection

in this play-acting, like I am This and you are That

 

can’t get inside…the receipts block my entry

i am blinded in the white-out

of slips and pages

unshredded

that no longer belong

just to him

 

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Poetry Reading in Pacific Grove

Ode to Maestro Klein, Peninsula Symphony Orchestra

Performance for San Mateo County Supervisors

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