(photo of Richard King Perkins II)
Even darkness has a blacker side
and when the sky
looks parallel upon the sky
at the furthest strain of vision—
there is an aspect almost recognizable.
Out of the dead ink,
the morning light reflecting from a mirror
dissolves our nearest reality.
A man in a nutmeg park flies a kite
in the image of someone,
someone so important
someone that never was.
A white iris sleeps under her pillow
and she lives to dance, dancing to dance
dancing to live a glass slipper life.
When the twirling ends and flight descends
it is finished but until then
we stare across a formless sheet of pitch
and like receding taillights
we fade together to an inseparable glow.
beside a forlorn bus station—
this is my room without board.
The shivering has ceased
arms and legs grown foreign,
incongruous to myself.
A pink haze is my lamp,
the residue of a city
that has forsaken me
to expire tepidly
among these rotting planks.
A dark ferry will stop
on this bleak
Dancers in the Eclipse
Cycles turn us beggars,
removing lives we thought
belonged to us.
An unseen hedgerow divides
what is sometimes a fable
sometimes a history
folded into a little slumber,
a little sleep.
Uncounted face of clock ,
everything wakes out of place,
pulsing in the core
of a dissolved fertile moor.
Voicelessly, moments confer
that this is all a wobbly portion
of a slender dancing phase,
that opposition is part
of our congruence
similarity, an aspect
of our discord.
As black is invisible within black
and white is mute upon white
diamonds spread back
a cloudŐs idiom
retrieves its lost rain
knowing this is happening
because we swore
it never would—
having believed too strongly
the composition of hours
was sufficiently understood.
Requiem of Yellow
A wilderness hyperventilates the aestheticism
that pours from the jonquil of your hair.
Utterings from the deeper trembles of your throat
strum love strands where all burdens ease
and surrender an opening for the ecosphere
to breathe the blush of your hair once more.
Darkened by the prurient azure and plain dilemma sophistry,
abjure a once handsome image, new garden creature,
his feral murmurs muffled in keratin you will not kiss
but still near enough to let you taste an entirely
new species of yellow.
A Song Never Heard
It may be a dedication or a requiem.
The dying composerŐs
last great gasp of creativity.
An unexpected union of poetry
and symphony inspired
to show that his existence,
whatever it had now become,
was once a vital celebration,
a mysterious excursion into the hinterlands
When little Alex,
so far removed from the source,
first experiences the rhapsody
he decidedly mistakes it
as justification for his shallow forays.
A pollyclef to the bog—
he might have chumbled,
and lets the composition inspire him
to things both
terrible and great.
But this is music from mid-winter
exalting a long ago spring,
not the score intended for a malchickŐs
first misguided attempt at flight.
So the old man sleeps on,
never knowing what he may have inspired
yet having once been given the keys
to unlock the heart of God
and offer ascent into the greatest universe—
even for those lost notes
unrecoverable by such majesty.
And bootless Alex marches onward
to an unharmonious clapping,
staggering toward bedlam and babel,
deaf to the notion
that an ode can best
be appreciated with perspective
and that joy is truly celebrated
only when it is a lifetime passed.
You are about to be taught something
so please pay strict attention.
Upon initially reading this
you could not have anticipated
that you would be learning something
of such vast importance.
I promise that if you devote
just a few more seconds of your
precious time in this endeavor,
you will be rewarded
with a fragment of wisdom
that you will carry with you
for the rest of your life.
And there you have it.
That's your lesson.
If you didn't get it, please reread
from the beginning
but in doing so just know that
you're only reinforcing
the point of my point.
© Richard King Perkins II
Bio: Richard is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He is married to Vickie and they have a daughter named Sage. His work has appeared in hundreds of publications including Prime Mincer, Sheepshead Review, Sierra Nevada Review, Fox Cry, Two Thirds North and The Red Cedar Review. He has poems forthcoming in Bluestem, Poetry Salzburg Review and The William and Mary Review.