I have been on Medium for five years. Along with my own work, I started two publications: Other Voices and Changes: On Aging. Both have languished over the past year as other obligations took me away. I would like to revitalize them now. If you would like to join in, just read the following.
This is a publication meant for any kind of writing, from poetry to Listicles. I edit nothing. Even your grammar and punctuation errors belong to you. I censor nothing. I only turn down hurtful and vicious pieces. Submit whatever you write.
Changes: On Aging
He was six days home from war when she knocked on his door. He had been contemplating suicide. Sworn to secrecy by law and strange spooks with dead eyes, he couldn’t tell her that. Whatever wounds he had suffered were his to bear alone and would be for many years. Still, his world was so turned upside down by the madness he had just escaped that her unexpected arrival seemed appropriate.
San Francisco, 1972; not the halcyon hippie days, but the lull shortly thereafter. It was a good place to be, safe and cheap. Much better than upland Laos with…
When I was a pirate
and you were my plunder,
eyes like oceans,
moans like thunder,
When I was a pirate
and you were my plunder…
wild and free.
More riot than quiet.
Oh what a world of wonder!
How thrilling to be
a happy pirate and
his libertine lady.
“Though lovers be lost, love shall not;
And death shall have no dominion.”
Moving towards death,
he abandoned love
like a single glove.
Once there had been
time for everything.
Lust and desire,
two kinds of fire.
Women, Lovers, Muses,
he opened like an explorer,
not only their lithe legs,
but the wild generosity
of their willing spirits.
He wanted to cherish them.
He wanted to please them.
He wanted the wanting of them.
He did not want to stay with them.
Time passed. He moved on.
Long lost loves
never truly go.
If they were happy,
they remain so.
The life of the flesh holds
the life of the soul.
We give of ourselves
to make us whole.
Pleasure is in the making,
not in the taking.
They have always closely followed me.
Sturdy, intelligent, vigilant, free.
Dripping on wires in damp Tennessee.
Fluffed against the Pennsylvania rain.
Their eyes follow my struggles and pain.
Always in groups of two or three.
Cawing out warnings in the first light.
Darkness made physical in the night.
A murderous gathering of fowl delight.
Never, ever have they gone away.
I don’t know what they are trying to say.
They are waiting patiently for something,
some perfect song I can never sing,
something I must not have to give.
Undaunted, they return every day.
Observing me try to find the way.
Black eyes watching me try to live.
She sits on the rocks
in a demure bikini,
smiling up at me
from half a century ago.
Her smile says: it is
good to be 19, the whole
future an endless vista,
and the ferocious vigor
that makes up first love.
A sudden epiphany.
I am transported back
to that sliver of time.
A lifetime evaporates.
Not memory, but real Being.
I feel everything that was,
as if I am right there again
and no time has passed.
Aphrodite’s Smile knows
nothing of time. It is
eternal; spans centuries;
open to any willing heart.
Time is just a lie
we tell ourselves.
Beauty and Love
can never die.
— — — -
This poem is connected with a story I wrote. Read it at: https://bookgardener.medium.com/the-girl-who-knocked-a-drama-bbc89d3c4218
Become a nowhere to go-getter.
Hope, though you know better.
Diagram sentences in Pali.
Meet Schrodinger’s cat for a drink. Or not.
Strain to break free of quantum entanglement.
Sample hors d’oeuvres with a cannibal.
Exorcise Maxwell’s demon.
Find an affordable cure for entropy.
Stretch the plasticity of time.
Parse the intrinsic syntax of boredom.
Announce a Methodist Jihad.
Invent and indulge imaginary desires.
Chase the orgasms that got away.
Memorize the complete History of Forgetting.
Ship balloons to the south to help it rise again.
Remove the rust from your lawn.
Consider the rain’s generic sorrow.
Add sugar to bitter recriminations.
Abandon your better nature.
Engage in remedial rage.
Snap Polaroids of maggots masticating.
Weep for the sadness of scarecrows.
Find a river you can step in twice.
Escape into anhedonic ecstasy.
Show these endless hours no mercy.
Honorary Schizophrenic. Recent refugee. Displaced person. Old white male. Confidant of cassowaries.