Matilde

"Matilde: the name of a plant, or a rock, or a wine, of 
things that begin in the earth and endure"
- opening lines of "100 Love Sonnets" by Pablo Neruda

(I)

It is the December of my life
The cold wind howls off the ocean
The sun shrugs its last light
Reflecting off sailcloth and unpainted shutters

Inside my room I am alone
Somber memories stare at me through cloudy windows
Their reflections filtered through the prism of my mind
The colors bleed a tapestry across the wall

The projector hums as your image fills the screen
First the sepia tones then the flesh
Finally all the colors burning across the back of my eyes
Which are now closed in perfect focus

The lady whom I once loved and who loved me
Smiles and whispers something in the darkness

 
 (II)

The only sound I hear
Is the wind murmuring its pleasure
You stand naked before me
Hand outstretched to touch my face

You breathe my name in 3/4 time
We waltz across the magnolias
And the petals emit a fragrance
That reminds me of another time

My feelings have materialized from hiding
Like the monarch emerging
From the chrysalis, transcending
The worm, exploding into a new kind of beauty

This woman has become my poem
This poem has become my love


(III)

Sometimes your music stops, the silence
Echoes like the eye of the hurricane
The only sound the cries of the gulls
Fleeing before the approaching madness

In those moments I hold you close
And begin to play my own sad song
Upon your face with my grieving lips
And trembling finger tips, you ache

Then cry in desolation, your sobs
Break the silence and change the mood
You relax beneath my touch
Stone transmogrified to sand, the grains

Draining through my fingers and in the falling
A rebirth of your song, a hymn, a benediction.


(IV)

Time passing through a glass
The hours spill like water from a vase
The flower dances into midnight
Your laugh echoes on the blossoms

As laughter fades to nothing
As colors lose their vibrance
And shape its definition
I'm confused by the quiet, blinded by the noise

Years pass by in minutes
I sense the shadow presence
Mysterious hands seize my wrists, insistent
My eyes are closed but in that instant

Our truths become the substance of myth 
Once upon a time  I was in love

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Beach Shack

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