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Ed Helms

I had envisioned doing comedy since childhood. For sure.

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Since childhood the night scares you

Since childhood the night scares you
as if here in Africa dark things do sneak about
and when the stars appear you start to long

for tomorrows when the sun hangs bright in the blue sky
and it feels as if something almost touchable sneaks up on you.
Since childhood the night scares you

as if even the wind hisses at times like a deadly snake,
as if something dangerous is drinking water from the dog's bowl
and when the stars appear you start to long

do want to replace your fears with my presence,
and you want to baste in the passion of our love.
Since childhood the night scares you

and it feels as if something evil wants to catch you
when you sometimes find shelter in the bath
and when the stars appear you start to long

while I dry the tears from your rosy cheek,
and hold on to you through the night.
Since childhood the night scares you
and when the stars appear you start to long.

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The Family Room. For Mary.

You put up with it because
as tiresome as it is, and as they can sometimes be,
somewhere there, there's always love.

He may take interest
in something to be repaired
that's mechanical; and
there's cars to wash and clean,
hobby things to sort and tidy.

Some kids are good or disciplined;
but there's never quite the time
in their expanding world
for doing just what you do
for the house..

But in the human heart
there's this locked, dusty room - you haven't dared
to look inside for years - or indeed
since childhood, for some people -
full of junk, of cobwebs,
broken windows, their sashes jammed,
cupboards that won't open, drawers
whose contents stop them opening; even
the birds have stopped their nesting there;
a room of memories that whisper when it's dark

It's the room that's family.
And surprise - the light still works..
A family can sort and dust and wash and clean and tidy it
in less time than they take
to slam the door
yet only you know that it's done, and how it's done.
And you say nothing.

Somewhere, two strangers
smile at one another

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Doing What I Do For Too Long

Keep 'this' in mind.
I don't 'have' to express an opinion,
When asked.
I 'select' to give one.
Realizing this...
I don't have to give any at all.

And if I should elect to express it...
I am giving it to the one who asked!
Who they should share it with is their business.
That is 'why' I keep my opinions,
To a limit.

And embellishments done to my statements,
Are obvious for the creative exaggerations made.

I've been doing what I do for too long,
Not to recognize those who plagiarize!
And those who 'ask' for answers to questions...
Just for the purpose to initiate conflict!

They are the ones quick to disagree,
To any response I may give.
And this 'before' I give it,
Is known!

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Day Time For Sure

I heard some words
Closely spoken to look forward
Was I in dream?
I searched around but felt it was Him

It is early morning
I had slept since late evening
Night was not that much pleasing
Yet it provided me new leasing

Morning is time for meditation
Wishing of very good relation
For self and entire universe
Peace and wish in mind without any curse

'You are my emissary' heard few words
As if some one spoke on behalf of lord
But was it something to do
Something was awaiting to proved it true

I have nothing to speak or react
What could I do to improve upon my acts?
Lead a normal life and spend the time
Among the poor and with downtrodden sometimes

Everybody needs some kind of shelter
Rest everything can go behind to look after
No one likes to be left behind
But from where else to get or find?

It might have happened due to chain of events
That I was passing through hectic movements
'World belongs to me and I am small creature'
I shall do whatever if I can do for our future

May be the words were for me to be heard
As were mere repetition for what I was looking forward
Same thing gave me lots of pleasure
I was not dreaming day time for sure

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Far from city rush

It is small village and far from city rush
Greenery all around and spread with bushes
Tall trees speak of strong roots with old existence
I came to realize my childhood at once

It has narrow path with dusty lanes
Big doors and open window panes
The air freely enter with so much dust
The village and nature is bonded with trust

I look round street but did not find her
She used to stay near by or somewhere
But I had long association to miss at once
She was almost there in house in my presence

I don’t know how did it happen?
She had not passed a word or confided even
It was her feeling and attachment
I was unaware and unmoved with her movement

We may spend hours together in lawn
Sit very close till the sun was dawn
Nature and innocence did not disappoint us
As we had enough of confidence and trust

We not only shared deep sentiment
But also exchanged happy moments
We had many things in common
We were neighbor and very good companion

I would never dare to offend and hurt
She may be almost in tears if I ever tried to flirt
Though we did cross our limit and stayed as friends
We had to depart as sad souls at the end

She had approached me with clear mind for sure
She had seen in me true lover of very kind nature
She was very much confident of getting my nod
I could not think of her even if was permitted by God

I was deeply attached but wanted only deep bond
As I was very much impressed, keen and fond
I wanted her to remain my well wisher and true ally
I thought of joining her as impracticable and complete folly

There are some moments which can not be shared
They are sacred promises and completely adhered to
I did not want to loose her from permanent association
Alas! I could do it for the sake of maintaining relation

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I Know For Sure

i know for sure
that when
you see
the sun directly
you close
your eyes
and see
everything
red inside
you

you do not
want to
be hurt
again

i know for sure
that when
you close
your eyes
you see
what you
want to see


will it be
me?

or will it
be him?

or will
it just
be yourself?

in pain
alone

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If I Knew For Sure

If I knew for sure I'd never see you again,
I would breathe but not be alive.
For all the air that would fill my lungs
would never have me thrive.

For to be left in this world without you
is a fate worse than death.
'Twould be better to find a resting place
and inhale my final breath.

No more eyes to shine for me
No more lips to smile
No more hands to be placed on me
Nothing left worthwhile.

If I knew for sure I'd never see you again
I would breathe but be cold as stone.
For the air that becomes warm from love
will have left me all alone.

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Thats For Sure

Think of the times you have sat by yourself
And wondered
Just what it was that compelled you to be
What you are
You came into this life unsheltered and all alone
Thats how you came and for sure thats how you go out.
High on a hill you can feel the breeze
And rest easy
All things that live have a right to exist
And be free.
You came into this life unsheltered and all alone
Thats how you came and for sure thats how youll go out
Thats for sure, thats how you go out
Thats for sure, thats how you go out
Thats for sure, thats how you go out
Thats for sure, thats how you go out.
Is there a chance you have taken these steps
So not losing
Losing all that you have, dont you know what you have is not
Real
You came into this life unsheltered and all alone
Thats how you came and for sure thats how you go out
Yeah thats for sure
Thats how you go out
Thats how you go out
Thats how you go out
Thats how you go out.

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Maybe For Sure

Love is what we hunger for, the appetite is strong.
Baby, take a little more.
Baby, come along.
Not for ever and a day.
Not for evermore.
Not for always.
Not that way.
Maybe just for sure.
Its like walking on little feet, one small step at a time.
Just like when we learn to speak.
Small words do just fine.
Not for ever and a day.
Not for evermore.
Not for always.
Not that way.
Maybe just for sure.
You know, Ive been as honest with you as Ive been true to myself.
Counting my fingers, one of every kind.
Im taking inventory, making sure whats mine, and when I look for someone to count on I take my time.
Baby, when we speak of love and promises to keep, when it comes to push or shove vows can fall asleep.
Not for ever and a day.
Not for evermore.
Not for always.
Not that way.
Maybe just for sure.
Now you know exactly how I feel about making promises I cant keep and about saying the small words I love you.

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Achieve Goals of Dreams!

Innocent animal pleasure of child is harmless!
Playful quest urges him to do so to get satisfaction.
With a little knowledge he likes pictures, colours
and enjoys beautiful things in dress and all things!

Perfectionist loves to see beauty in all activities,
Loves beauty of Nature, beautiful things ever,
Loves to do in a beautiful way whatever he loves;
Aesthetic nature grows since childhood on sure!

Then thinking age begins him to feel about drawbacks;
Seeks loneliness in Peaceful places of Nature at first;
His taste of beauty diverts him towards Nature's beauty:
Sea, sky, misty hills, snow mountains, smooth rivers,
Green meadows, smiling flowers, moon and stars....!

He goes to such places often far from the madding lads;
Gets peace of mind and communes with Nature in toto;
Becomes also a mystic soon enjoying the bliss endless!
He regains new spirit full of enthusiasm and begins life
Again from the scratch to achieve goals of his dreams...!

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Understand For Sure, You Are Here To Learn What Understanding Is!

Can you see dear,
life itself is the fountain of infinite Self,
That tiny drops of life raise from and fall into same,
Rainbow of enchanting beauty,
That due to light of soul,
showing its enchanting colours.
In every drops, large or tiny alike,
Flora and fauna are those devices of self,
rainbow looks more clear,
When tiny drops are in abundance!

Self manifesting its capabilities,
That all energies and forces too,
Change their form for the play of the formless,
Who is in eternal play appearing in various forms,
Formless showing his ability to assume any form!

Life is a school, with dress code,
Uniform that the kids of self wear,
Show in which class they learn,
Showing level of evolution of mind,
Tuning to the mind of that infinite!
Look at the uniform you and me wearing,
top most class in which we study,
Don't engage in ragging juniors,
Look inside,
Know for sure, you have the source of fountain of life,
That eternal loving Self act through you
Understand you are here to learn,
What understanding means!

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Calling for sure

Who may not have pleasure?
If some one is calling you or sure
Many hearts may be failing
Sweet heart, sweet heart may be calling

Many females might have scaled the wall
This is their pure and honest call
I am not sure how many may be longing for same female
She too may be sure of her belonging with the male

Who may not like to have pleasure?
If some beautiful partner is there for sure
It is natural for any one to fall in for attachment
It will then be glorious and fine moment

You may not have beautiful or balanced figure
It may not that attractive to appeal for sure
Yet there is magnetic pull to draw you closer
Only you got to prove and have nice composure

The eyes have power to read all that you want to tell
If time is remedy then everything may turn out to be well
You may have all the fortunes at your feet
All distances may vanish when you openly meet

The love making is not purely an accidental
It requires solid will with strong base of metal
It has no going back once committed
There is no withdrawal and even not permitted

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What I Want For You to Do

I am asked to do 'this'.
With a request to do 'that'.
I am even asked to rate a significance...
Upon completing those tasks that I'm asked.
To accomplish every one I get!
Folks could care less when they make requests.

And I can perceive how some are caught up in it!
Believing that an attention given...
Will keep me interested and content!
As if what I do is not a sacrifice.
But comes from a natural 'oozing' done...
From some 'other' source,
That's an outside device.

'And...hmmm,
That could be a possibility.
Now that 'that' has now occurred to me.'

I sometimes will read those requests I get.
But no one has yet to answer my questions...
'What's in it for me?
What do I get?
What do I receive as my benefit? '

Love?

And don't say you'll do for me,
What you've requested me to do!

And yet have I had a delivery,
Of freshly minted one hundred dollar bills.
To pop out of a box over stocked.
Not once!

Besides...
I am more original than that!
I want returned to me...
The time taken away from what I love.
Since it took me quite some time,
To find myself quite in love with it!

And not a response do I get!
Except the usual...
'But you're already doing,
What I want for you to do for me too! '

EXCUSE ME?

And those requests,
Get my silence at its best!
Since I recognize...
There is no shortage or famine,
Of this kind of selfish greed.
From Sunset to Sunrise!

It is as 'if' my eyes are 'theirs'...
And will supply them vision.
With a clarity I can provide.
And if that's the case...
Someone should get me 'booked'
On Oprah!

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My Mother

Mom never differentiated between children
She was going out of her way even
But since I was eldest out of all
She will surely take me with love and affectionately call

Very funny and smiling as I was in childhood
People loved me at my visiting places in neighborhood
Mother will scold me and warn not to go so often
But I may disregard her advice and simply move on

She did everything to bring me up with all kindness
She never bore fatigue or any kind of uneasiness
Her face may remain bright all the time with smile on face
I used to watch here number of hours and suddenly chase

She was always worried about my growing age
What I will be doing in life when suddenly left out of cage
I may not fare well and will harm the future
She was little worried but didn't know for sure

People used to call me naughty and troublesome
Even though I wore innocent smile and looked handsome
They may let me go without any complaint to mother
But mother knew it all and that continued her to bother

I had tears in eyes when I saw her completely aged
Even though she is same as was before but nearly managed
After so many years of away from her I missed every moment
I didn't let her down later on and acted wise for all the movements

She may smile secretly and put a pat on the back
'You were only my concern and source of worry'
She may pull me near and shower all her feelings
I was luckiest person among all to have her as blessings

When I was back from my recent assignment
I did find her in complete ill health with difficult movements
I could hardly stop self and went over to her forehead
Pasted a gesture of fulfillment and tried to read

She was all for praise and smiled
I was not taken up seriously for a while
Today she is less concerned for me than all
I take her with me for evening walk and stroll

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But For Being Lost

As black imbued black, so was rendered the pitch of darkness
That befogged this godforsaken yard of graves -
And too the dank, ‘til now forgotten chapel that
Did little to grace these forlorn grounds.

Yet here stood I, seemingly first to tread this weed-ridden soil
Since times of yore when life had erstwhile blessed this land.
But for being lost in solitude - as does a country wanderer -
Would I not have happened across this morbid landscape.

And though detail rendered barely visible to my naked eye –
For desperately had the moon tried to break through this jet fog –
A sense of something suffused the place.
Was it those tormented spirits desperate for absolution,
Or perhaps the gargoyles teasing me on whether they be of stone or living flesh?

I was drawn to the oak door as it enticingly opened in passage for me.
The organ called from down the nave and through the pale orange of unsteady light
- that which could only be mustered from the few discoloured, moribund candles.
Could I also hear a distant choir of stern voices, as if in effort to scold me?

As I approached, those tarnished pipes came into view.
Standing erect with gothic pride, they bore down on me with patronising air -
Exaggerated by the disjointed sneering of minor chords,
As if to state that insignificant I had henceforth no grant of solace.

In answer, I steadied my rocking legs and racing mind to wonder of this scenario.
And in doing so, I found myself waking from a cramped dream –
Whence the message dawned: mine had been such a claustrophobic life.

Copyright © Mark R Slaughter 2009



lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost
lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost
lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost
lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost
lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost lost

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No Childhood

Grew up too fast
Childhood didn't last
Defiled at the age of 3
Changing my life permanently
Mom wasn't there
Life wasn't fair
Never met my dad
Neglect was all I had
Grew up too fast
Childhood didn't last
16 and pregnant
didn't know what that meant
responsibility aquired
overworked and over tired
child number 2 on the way
just another month - just another day
married and divorced by 23
struggling to find the inner me
trying to identify what love was
yearning to know if I was enough
Searching for my worth in man after man
floating through life waiting to land
3 years later - baby number 3
responsibility was all on me
as life moves on and the clock keeps turnin
days gone by and i'm still yearning
for the childhood i never had
for the chance to meet my dad
into my life walks my superman
claimin if anyone can save me - he can
he sweeps me off my feet
making me complete
i take his last name
and life isn't the same
i thank God for the opportunity
he's given by sending you to me
and as i start to open up and realize
stop hiding and open my eyes
i missed out on my childhood
and though i did the best i could
to be the mom i never had
give my kids my missing dad
and stil i feel inadequately
as i search deeper within me
to find out who i'm supposed to be
sometimes i feel like i have nowhere to give from
the places that were supposed to till me were never done
and so i grasp for an idea of hwo to be
the mom that wasn't modeled for me
I can't play, I can't pretend
scars of the past continuing to mend
i imagine and play how i think a mom should be
but more often than not it doesn't come naturally
nuturing was replaced by survival
when just trying to make it was all
i had the energy to do
and as i'm writing you
i realize that i missed out on my childhood
and i wonder if it's understood
I'm not the parent i want to be
but i'm the best parent that's within me
still making mistakes
but doing what it takes
to be a better mom than i knew
and as i'm writing you
i realize that i missed out on my childhood

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Waiting for you to tire

Ive been doing this since I was 12 years old
I remember rapping, standing in the freezing cold
Its funny cause we always said we would blow
I still feel the buzz from the crowd, I remember that show
you don't need to remind me I know it was four years ago
I can't forget the feeling I would get when I read back a rhyme I wrote on a page
Ill never forget that party, it was the first time I performed on a stage
and I know you remember cause you know we blew it away
they had their phones out, theyre hands up, they loved it, what can I say?
There was a place in my dreams a place I was trying to find
used to battle in school but the real battle was between my heart and mind
and I couldn't see what I was saying when I freestyled because I was blind
I was always thinking about the future but now all I wanna do is rewind
I keep playing back old recordings so I can find the fire
its like they want me to fail they're just waiting for me to tire...

Because this road you walk isn't as clear as it first seemed
they're just waiting for you to tire...
so you can no longer see the place that you have dreamed
they're just waiting for you to tire...
waiting for you to tire, waiting for you to tire.

But I'm not tired, I'm putting on a brave face
I don't like you being close, can't you you see I need my space?
Because if I don't say hello there will be no need to say good bye
cause every day I watch friends of mine as they slowly die
this messed up life is the reason that I started to write
and I used to enjoy this life until everyone started to fight
it all became one repeated battle that was no longer raw
and honestly I didn't like what it was all represented for
cause I left it all behind but you wouldn't go with me
too many people confused the rythm, they didn't understand the poety
and I promised myself I would never rap with you again
I started hearing a grime flow, so many people were doing it the same
and your doing a so called wifey tune when she'll never be your wife
your talking about guns and you've never seen one in your life
and the news is blaming rap again cause a youth was taken by a kinfe?
they're just waiting for me to tire as I keep trying to write...

Because this road you walk isnt as clear as it first seemed
theyre just waiting for you to tire...
so you can no longer see the place that you have always dreamed
theyre just waiting for you to tire...
waiting for you to tire, waiting for you to tire.

your entire life
you fight only to survive
you continue to strive
only to keep the hope you have alive...

And the devils do run you round in circles
yet they manage to keep you in the line
but to the battle you have to return
it is your time to find the fire
are you really ready to finally tire?

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In It For the Sake of Image...And, Perhaps Contrast!

Free to be who I 'is' ain't cool.
For those who wish to depict me as a fool.
Or entertain their whims...
To fantasize my depressed beginnings.

I refuse to be ignorant.
I refuse to pretend,
My mind I don't use.
Or welcome an abused ending,
Of my life experience.
To be documented in an expedience.
With an erased historic contribution I make!

No time do I spend dreaming of wings in an afterlife...
With others in white robes!
As harps play.
While visions increase...
As I pray on my knees,
For a pair of golden slippers.

I have flipped that image!

I don't accept because I am black...
That I should expect to be kept held back.
Because I lack a qualified 'intelligence'.
Compared to those expressing none at all!
Except for those certified as approved robots!

I am not into kicking down doors for them to open.
Nor do I neglect with disrespect...
Those who elect to keep faith and hope.
Whatever their motivation...
I support.
But I do object to the use of symbolism.
It conflicts with the 'Everywhere And In All Things'
God Is!

Nor do I choose to hang out with those...
Who are taught to feel remorseful.
As they dope up,
To choke on 'good' weed...
With feelings to get 'high'
To increase a low self esteem.

That ain't me!

And I ain't seeking equality either.
Preached by leechers...
Who enjoy seeing me dance,
As I reach for 'their' expectations.
Prancing down the aisles of churches...
To release my last earned dollar.

However...
I do not object to those feeling charitable,
In my behave.
Donations I will accept...
Yes! Most definitely.

I am seeking to be me.
Without a rehabilitation stamp on my behind!
I said I accept 'charity'.
Nothing emblazed on my butt!
As anyone's piece of precious property.

And...
Without being branded a minority.
By those suppressing me with the falsity,
Of their superiority over me!

That's one lesson I never quite understood.
And failed.

I'm not living my life to claim limitation!
Or seek a Tarzan for rescue!
I was not raise to await those days to come.
Nor flee from obstacles!

That ain't me!
I have flipped that image!
And others...
Some my sit to equip themselves with!
In labor to discourage me.

And I have observed their numbers dwindling,
In frustration!

While they watch my every move...
The shirts on their backs are being sold,
To the highest bidder!

An updated version of slavery!
Marketed on Wall Street!

And my knowledge could have saved them,
From embarrassment.
But not once have I been asked,
How I manage to maneuver...
With their feet strapped to my back!

I think they had been doing that for the contrast!
Since they are just in it,
For the sake of image...
Sales.
And a bottom line,
That's borrowed!
To keep the gush of an ignorance,
That bleeds!

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Patrick White

It's Not Like The Face In The Flower Of The Star

It's not like the face in the flower of the star
grows more beautiful the more times it's looked at,
it's just that it's humanizing
the vast, cold spaces within you
with your own awareness of it so that
when you spot Arcturus shining through the trees
as you have since childhood and call out its name
it's you that shines brighter
a magnitude more for the moment.
Affable familiars in a big, lonely space
acknowledging each other in passing
as if, animate and inanimate, the same,
what we all hold in common
since we started kicking in the womb
is this life of perpetual exile. Shape-shifters,
driven out of the bliss of oblivion, to bury the bell
of our agony in the stillness of an alien place
and try to love everyone who'll let us
as if they weren't a stranger at the gate.

O the appellations the mind applies to its formlessness
in a world of forms to befriend its cosmic isolation.
That fills space up with stars and birds
suggested by its senses and then casts a spell
like a grammar of things to turn them into words
to start a conversation with chaos as if we weren't all
talking to ourselves. We put lifemasks on everything
like an old Greek play and act out our tragedy
like a dilemma gored on the horns of the goat gods
as if they had a clear grasp of what we were talking about.
Asking a question doesn't change
the ambiguous nature of the issue
and when no one answers isn't proof
the silence is divine. Bright vacancy, dark abundance,
nothing includes everything in it
like a table of contents for the mind
that plays host to its own imaginary guests.

The door bell rings and the world's
standing in the doorway bearing gifts
that have no other meaning other than
they're addressed to you the way life
nourishes itself on its own emptiness
as if every moment were a cause of celebration
engendered by your own inspiration.
Every song in the distance is the ancestral echo
of your own voice in an abyss
you're trying to relate to by listening
as if you were sounding the depths
of the mystery you must be to yourself
to live among your own creations as if
someone signed you too. Your name
scrawled in cadmium red blood across
a white canvas of albino eyes in the dark.
Imagination obedient to the freedom
of its own lawlessness to create as it is urged to
on a caprice, a gust of stars, the nudge of an atom,
whole new paradigms of space and time
it will answer to as if someone called its name.

If the same eye by which I see the star
is the eye by which the star sees me,
then who's the creator, who's the creation?
So if someone were to ask me the colour of my eyes,
I'd show them a painting I did
of blue weed towering beside a dirt road
or a moonscape I dashed off one starless night
between the clouds. Or even further afield,
if I felt they'd been siderealized sufficiently,
the blue auras of trace elements grinding galaxies
into mirrors they can see themselves in
like leggy gazelles come down to the shore
to drink from their own reflection of themselves
like telescopes alert to the eyes that lie in wait for them.

Everywhere I wander down these pathless ways
through my homelessness, I meet myself
like a mirage at the end of a cul de sac,
and I walk through it like a wall
or two galaxies passing through each other
without disturbing a star, I embody such distances,
and I encounter hypnotists from all quarters
that call themselves seekers of the truth
trying to wake up from their own magic
as if they hadn't caught on to their own minds yet
and were still underestimating the power of their illusions.
Why wash the stars off the windows, or sweep
the scars of the autumn leaves off the stairs
expecting the enlightened arrival
of the lord and lady of the manor any day now
as if you could get a grasp on the nature
of your own emptiness like a servant
looking for a master in your own image?

Everything nasty and blind,
everything beautiful and sublime
are the facets of a clear jewel
turning in the light of the void.
All that is separated, all that is enjoined,
all that are searching and finding
and losing themselves again like solar flares
on a return journey back to the sun
or rivers flowing into themselves
as if every wave crossed the threshold of itself
into an openness exhilarated by
the expansive gesture of its presence,
are just the hidden secret of you
wanting to be known by a world
you whisper into your own ear
as if you'd never heard the sound
of your own voice before the wind
began to throw the sea into turmoil
and you were swept ashore out of
the inconceivability of your own emptiness
like a myth of awareness sadly in need of an origin.

So you end up creating a world
out of your own inner resources and calling it
mother or father in the hopes it might be able
to explain what you're doing here by yourself.
And that's how you get lost in the labyrinths
of your own being, that's how your wires get crossed
in the short circuits of your lifelines
tangled up in kites like morning glory
that wouldn't fly. You keep asking simulacrums
of your own creativity about things
that only you on your own, lonelier than God,
projected imaginatively like a lifemask
you created in your own image
onto the formlessness of an invisible space within you,
can be the answer to. The moment
you say I am to yourself and realize
that you're not even there to recognize it
the little thumb puppet in three pounds of starmud
dematerializes like something solid
into the presence of the real. You revel like a child
in the creative liberty of not keeping your own distance
from anything in existence, knowing
in the crazy wisdom of your second innocence
the only thing that binds you to it
or separates you from it, is a sense of play.
That everytime you say I am without
including the whole universe in it as well
it becomes the wayward paradigm
of another brilliant mistake with feet of clay.
Or as Archibald Lampman said
dead of a heart attack at thirty-six,
poor shining angels whom the hoofs betray.

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Patrick White

Darkness, Let Me Enter

Darkness, let me enter. Oblivion, open your arms.
Sweet liberty, lengthen my chain by light years.
Venus in the Pleiades, let me feel your charms.
I want to ride the light, o yes I do, as far as I can
toward some flowering of the mystery
I can add myself to and bloom as the stars do.
My most intimate familiar, solitude, eras of it,
yet it's never known my name. My best feature
once you get pass the indignation and the anger,
compassion. And though love seems to me
the sum of many hearts, trying to express itself
as one, when have I not been a doorway to the dead?

When have I ever preferred my happiness
even as my last rainbow bridge went up in flames
and there was no where else to cross before the falls,
to that of the ironic beatitudes of the forbidden and the blessed?
Make me a star again one day with a few habitable planets,
each with at least one moon that can make me crazy as this one.
Promise? Promise me it will be so and mean it.
I will continue. I will keep on. I will endure like a mountain
that never capitulated volcanically to my own rage.
I'll walk the road standing up. I'll traverse it on my knees.
I'll be the nightbird. The green bough. The apple bloom.
I've learned. I'll listen. And when I'm overwhelmed by words,
I'll give you my voice and let you speak for yourself.

Whoever, whatever, you are not or you are,
though I hear you're too ineffable to get to know,
should the day ever come you want to disclose yourself
like a hidden secret that wants to be known,
I'll understand that, I'll be the night in your mirror
that shows you four hundred billion stars in the eyes
of as many life forms and more in the multiverse
than you can see without being astonished by the beauty
of all the secrets you've kept to yourself for light years.

Even if I'm just talking to myself like a waterclock
pouring my mindstream from one ear into another,
whether you're there or not, or just the matriculated anima
of a pineal gland projected onto a holographic space time continuum,
and my spirit be no more than my own breath
condensing on the diminishing window of this cold sky
where I write the name of someone I've never met
with a frost-bit finger, longing for encounters I won't regret,
let me flow into your awareness like a wavelength
into a river of light or let me burn in the immutable darkness
a firefly of thought, a thread of lightning, a distant star,
a thinning fragrance of a wildflower you might have known
a long time ago that reminds you of someone
so many changes away from anyone you'd recognize today.
I'm not looking for someone to whine to.
I've been omnidirectional since I turned forty-five
so I don't need anyone to tell me where I'm going.
I'm not looking for a soft shoulder of the road to cry on.
After so many nights of laying my head
on this hard rock pillow of a world
that's refeathering itself in scales and razorblades
I'm not dissing the occult wisdom of my consolation dreams.
The way it seems is the way it appears. Let it.
I grew up on the streets, drastically. I know how
to break a mirror in case of a catastrophe.

Just let me pretend for awhile out here in the woods
where I always feel as a human it's the first day
of a kid in the schoolyard until I make friends with an owl
or the occasional, curious bush wolf wondering
what I'm doing so far off my natural turf, and why,
just like a dog from the city abandoned on a farm
I feel so disowned sometimes I should learn
to snarl back at the moon when it bares its fangs at me
instead of baying its praises to the rest of the asylum.

Just let me suppose for awhile that a poet
isn't the orphan of the absurd, that there's
a bloodline of meaning that still seeps into everything
like the dye of a black rose in the night that steeps the heart
in all frequencies and colours of the clear light of the void
that tastes like the mystic poetry of the waters of life
on the tongue of a stranger who's just wandered in from the desert,
his lips dusty with the stars he's been drinking
from an hourglass rimed with sand and salt.

I don't want to receive everything only to find out
I prayed for nothing, so I won't, but if you're
the shapeshifting creatrix of subtle intelligence
I intuit you might be sometimes when I'm alone
with the stars like a childhood that hasn't forgotten me,
and there's a sudden breeze out of nowhere
that grazes the back of my neck like a sabre of the moon
so close I could swear we were lovers in another life,
light a candle for me somewhere in the universe,
and you be the light by which the light is known.
Show me your smile like moonrise on the lake.
Let me see your eyes in the rain, so inter-reflected
they can't help shining out of everything as if
no one could keep you a secret for long, except you,
and for the moment, at least, I'm not accepting this.
Don't care if I'm painting a lifemask to put on an abyss
of molecular indifference. You should see the tears
I've smeared under my eyes to save face
with the sacred clowns I've been from time to time.

You keep your distance and I'll play hard to get as well.
You take one step toward me, and I'll go the rest of the way.
Devotion's always been a weakness of mine. One sign
and I'll light up like an esoteric zodiac that just went electric.
I'll meet you on a bridge at midnight, and I won't forget
when fire comes down to the water's edge, fire
has to use the bridge as well. Just tell me that you care,
if not for me, for all these humans that die like roadkill
stunned by the highbeams of oncoming circumstance
as if nothing in life, however rightly or wrongly,
however young or old the blood on the hands of the clock
that kills them as if they were as devoid of characteristics as you
could console them for the loss of what they dared to hold close.
That's the gamma ray burst of the protest that has kept us apart
since my innocence first started bleeding in childhood
for the impersonality that mutilates 3.5 billion years of evolution,
the sum of all our infirmities and strengths, as if there were
nothing to cherish or venerate in us, like a homeless drunk
beaten to death on a fire-escape in a back alley just for the fun of it.

That's the thorn in my heart. I watched my mother
half beaten to death three times by my father before I was seven
and it wasn't you, it was me, that picked up the ax
to put a stop to it. Who could aspire to heaven
when that's going on in the snakepit at your feet?
How do you return to your toy truck after
the cop cars and the ambulance has left with your mother
and the absence is so terrifying even the nightmares
don't dare echo an answer that isn't an atrocity of guile
that lies to a child about the good that will come out of it.

I'm sixty-four now and ever since my eyes were pryed open
like the petals of a flower that wasn't ready to bloom yet,
everywhere I look, the indignity and ferocity
of intrusive happenstance inflicting itself upon life
with a few intermittent truces to lick our wounds
like razorblades in candied apples. Yes, I stand my ground.
Knock me down. I'll get up again. And I'll carry my pain
in my heart, in my voice, in my art, my blood, my arms,
in the urn of everything I've ever cherished
like a silver eagle, a placard, a birthmark back into the tear gas
of the last crusade that never had a chance, if I must,
until the human divinity that broke the seal of our suffering,
small as our light may be now, leaves an indelible impression
upon space and time, or you, if you're there,
like the labyrinth of a fingerprint you can't ignore.

And I'm not asking for an emergency exit,
just take the gate off the entrance and let everyone in
on the secret of why everything seems so brutally true
in the bright vacancy, dark abundance of your absence,
and I'll dance with you in a garden on the moon
until the lemons turn blue as the wild grapes in late October
when you shall be my folly. And I shall be your fool.

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