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Who I Am

The cold light of dawn that highlights all flaws –
I stand firm in the face of danger,
misunderstanding –
for lack of alternative.
What does the world have to offer me
but a prison made of human hearts –
cells made of words
with bars made of meaning.
If I could solve the riddle
I could break free.
The cold light I shed on the world
makes it easier yet more difficult to see.
All details sharpened,
all meaning blurred.
All questions blatantly showing,
no answers acceptable.
I long for shade,
But the light is everywhere.
I stand in the middle of it,
illuminated by it
yet unseen by others.
I stand unwillingly
No rest is offered me
I am the cold light of dawn
which nobody likes
since it shows them
all that is wrong with the world –
and with themselves.

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Childhood Dreams

I used to dream of wisdom,
I used to dream of strength.
I used to dream of good things –
those dreams were all to end.

I used to dream up people,
I used to dream up jobs.
I dreamt of past and future –
the future that was lost.

I used to dream of travels,
they came and off they went.
I used to dream of happiness
but what I had is spent.

I used to dream of getting,
achieving… all in vain.
And now I dream of dreaming
for dreams alone remain.

But now I cannot dream
without that bitter sting;
that bitter voice that whispers:
“You’ve lost it, everything!”

What’s lost is mainly this,
the most important part;
that crucial belief in dreams
that warmed my childhood heart.

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The Dried-Up Ocean

Childhood vs. Adult Imagination

I remember, once upon a time,
an ocean stretching far and wide –
an open, endless, wide expanse
whose boundaries were out of sight

Yet now, when in that kind of mood
I take the path towards its strands
I find a muddied, little brook
that hardly stirs among the sands

And all the worse; where it before
was cool and quite refreshing, so
today it’s warm and drowsying –
no, nothing’s like it was before

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Old, Torn Lace

Old, torn lace
hanging draped
over a sunkissed face.

We’re old as a species
though the planet thinks us young.

Paint that scales
off house facades –
crackled pavements
worn by decades.

Weathered, wooden fences –
weathered, broken tiles.
Weathered, petrified
concrete – stretching miles.

Stiff, unbending people.
Feet that keep on coming.
Weathered fossils clinging –
wanting to stay young.

Green sprouts are tearing
at concrete coffin-spaces
leaving old, torn lace
meshes in their places.

We’re old as a species
though the planet thinks us young
and sooner than both know
we shall have been and gone.

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The buds that unfold and grow,
the dew that resumes at night,
droplets in beams of light,
dispersing remnants of snow.

The skin on the back of your hand,
the sunshine through the trees,
the veins that pattern leaves,
footprints in the sand.

The wrinkes around your eye,
the dispersing remnants of mist,
the creepers that turn and twist,
cotton wool in the sky.

The dust in a beam of light,
the hoar frost on the leaves,
icicles hanging from trees,
your breath in a winter night.

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My Antiquities

The things I valued
not so long ago –
the things for which I lived
and the ones I left untold
are all now piled together
into one close-packed rhyme
for all now share in fate:
They’ve fallen out of time.

Those things I used to care for,
and those I used to hate,
are all now out of store;
oblivion their fate.

The school I used to go to
has left the Earth and passed.
The town that I grew up in
is breathing at its last.
The people I once knew
have disappeared from view
and it’s no consolation
to think of all the new.

The things I once believed in
is history today.
The earliest of my paintings
is buried under rubble;
nothing is to stay.

But who cares for my words
and who cares for the truth?
The world we live in now
cares only for success and youth.
To say that nothing lasts,
to say that all’s in vain
is not to be expected
to strike a common strain.

And that is why in silence
within my withering heart
I ponder my antiquities
alone and in the dark.

What others will forget
for me alone remains.
What others want achieve
for me is what’s been had
and cannot be again.

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Cure This Blessing

Cure this blessed numbness
which I wished for when I
was enflamed, ensnared by senses
but never truly would have wanted
had I known the consequences;
the indifference, the irrelevance
of anything and everything –
a broken view of my old world,
no longer able to engage me
in the happy moments
caused by sensations –
now I no longer care.

Cure this numbness, please,
come and rescue me, I wish,
return me to what I have lost
although there might be purpose
behind said loss – come anyway!

I fear this blessed numbness,
a part of me doesn’t truly
want to stop feeling already –
come and bring me back again
to the sense-world I am leaving.

Come and lead the way gently,
come take my hands carefully,
draw me back into the world,
into the mindless buzzing whirl
whose edge I balance on
without you, all alone.

Cure this blessed numbness,
Don’t let me succumb to this feeling;
no feeling,
no sensation –
what vexation!
Is this supposed to be the end,
the final goal I hoped for, then?
If that is so I’m too afraid to go –
however flawed this world is
it’s still better than forgetfulness;
I am not ready for departure yet!

Come, bring me back again and then
stay with me, never let my feelings end!

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Confusion is a fact of life, and when my mind forgets,
my dreams continue to remind me of the life I had;
I see you, see your smile again, and hear your voice again,
I feel you touch me, feel your skin. I love you yet again.

And when I went to sleep last night I was supposed to dream
but I gained no such thing; I went to work within my sleep;
I wrote and wrote about you and I meant each word I wrote,
but everything was washed away the moment I awoke.

I know I love you, even though I don’t know how or why;
I can’t remember if I know; forget it when I try –
I’d like to just erase you, to move on and to forget,
but every time I sleep you still return to fill my head.

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My Questions

I have so many questions;
at least one for every person I have met,
both the ones alive
and the ones who are dead.

I have so much to ask everyone
because I want to understand
my life and its connections;
something I just can’t!

I have questions for my parents;
grandparents (now all dead);
and family members I have – or haven’t – met.
For teachers, classmates,
partners, friends;
for cleaners, lunch-ladies, janitors,
secretaries, bus-drivers, waitresses,
hairdressers, yes,
even the creepy guy who stocks shelves
at my local supermarket.

I have so many questions
that I’d like to ask them all
but all I ever say is: “What a weather!”,
“Got my e-mail?” or “On which shelf…?”

And besides, the most important questions
are the ones I ought to ask myself…

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Ode to My Elementary School

A pile of rubble, bricks and timber
scattered on a plain.
Some cluttered lines of trees alone
is what remain.

And weeds are sprouting through the waste
uncaring and unkind.
But then again – how could they care –
does anybody care what’s left behind?

A corner of a mural flecked with dust;
the first I ever painted – gone to waste.
The wall whereon it hang has been knocked down,
the past has been erased.

And not a sound is heard in this new wasteland
where I was taught to write.
It now lives only in the writings
that I dedicate to it.

There are so many memories tied to this place.
Both good and bad – all gone.
All gone and nature’s coming to reclaim –
all must pass on.