Yellows and Blues

Updated: Mar 16

A cacophony of cicadas crashes

through the night scratchy serenade

of lovesick singers soothing the itch to croon

in static only an invertebrate brain

could comprehend white noise

the provenance of Provence France’s

offspring of southern sweetness swilled

with honeycombs hung out to dry

a taste of nectar in ageless sunflower fields

I followed van Gogh to St Remy its hills

of yellow and blue spread like a tourist’s

tablecloth tossed on fertile ground

farmhouses rose wrapped in rock walls

thick enough to muffle the shrill cries

of unlucky couples in love how the slightest touch

stirs a primal utterance that robs the night

of its fuzzy blanket clutched against the autumn chill

wrapped around the head and ears to mimic silence

Madness creeps ever this way locked in a ward glued shut

with tubes of cobalt and gold hardening in the noonday

sun that bears down on the living an affair in flagrante

an action ill understood yet swept up in metaphor

and personality sorely lacking in the inanimate glob

of sunspots and explosions nothing nature displays

as unambiguously pure or upright ever proves more true to itself

than warmth and burning fire and ice light and sunstroke

that recur like homeless incarnations of the freshly dead

I paint with words that harden on the page clots of meaning

unsure of their substance liquid or solid or somehow both

they resonate with the rhythms of the sun which resonates

with nothing but hell home to the final incarnation

of the human soul still stained by lust anger resentment revenge

if only a Dante were born in each revolution of the wheel

if only terza rima rattled in our throats like last night’s phlegm

the Other cannot be spit out he looms larger than our lives

Hermes of the overworld that builds toward agape

only to envy the cut of suede that wraps around our doppelganger’s

legs we can rely on his turning quietly in the shadow

of integrity clawing open his cage of identity twice as dense

as his originator’s bile two by two they marched into the ark

only to exit with a third on the way diminishing in stature

the lovely couple cramped amid fetid odors and rancorous

tongues how grand the replenishing of the earth when instincts

conquer wrongdoing how grandiose the man who counts himself

lucky before he dies the measure runs out beyond the grave

The alter ego calculates the days by sifting sand

then polishes the hourglass that spills always one more grain

than the last go-round one more sieve to slip through

to the past it dissipates like smoke crystallized in bits of charcoal

an ebony glint sharp edges hardened lava walk gingerly

to your outpost on the western frontier of time endlessly

marching toward the apocalyptic dawn more light more shadow

more more for us to savor in yellows and blues that braid together

on the ceramic surface of Provence’s proper self-regard as France

meets its maker once again

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