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Teenage Angst Revisited (Reunion Blues) November 27, 2016

Posted by vsap in Blogroll, Poetry, Uncategorized.
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When did this happen to you?

Weren’t you an ingĂ©nue, most likely and all?

Those high school dreams are past due

and college goal posts were bound to fall.

Bittersweet, this moving on and letting go;

embracing an extended honeymoon with your career,

but you numbed guilt with your brother’s blow

then kicked yourself for crying in your beer.

So, is it true you got your Christmas wish?

You act as if you haven’t but you certainly have.

It’s a set of fine China with a chipped dish

and your hands wrist deep in healing salve.

You can’t fix the damage on your expensive plate

and you can’t reset goal posts lying in the past.

So forget old dreams and buy new at the going rate;

then, you discover you can’t afford something that lasts.

I could ask you to come with me, but I know that won’t do.

You were prom queen and I was third for class clown.

You were pristine and I had a mouth keen to turn the air blue,

but even the thought of me with you brought you down.

helpless in the face of love November 17, 2016

Posted by vsap in Blogroll, Poetry, Uncategorized.
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When I was told, in no uncertain terms,

to never have contact with you again,

my mouth remained shut, but my heart

It cried

It moaned

It yearned

But I was helpless in the face of love.

Jealousy sings at higher octave and louder

and I could call it all a misconception

Just friends

No affair

Nothing tawdry

But I was helpless in the face of love.

There was no mercy, no quarter for hiding

and whimpering over the loss is useless.

Friends leave

Conversations forgotten

Promises unkempt

And I was helpless in the face of love.

Understanding days, months, years separate

more than miles and squealing airplane tires

Closed book

Lost chapter

Moving away

But I was hopeless in the face of love.

I would get used to the silence and loss

we all do after something or someone dies

Its mourning

Its grieving

Its memories

But I was hopeless in the face of love.

It comes down to choice and direction

and I have had to make mine, no closure,

But I am hopeless in the face of love.

there is no yesterday, no safer times November 16, 2016

Posted by vsap in Blogroll, Poetry, Uncategorized.
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Kids don’t recall how cars slipped gears,

the crank and grind in missing second;

Transmissions are so fluid now, easy to shift.

But life still slips gears and grinds in unexpected ways,

just at the wrong time, in the midst of the open road,

convertible top down, at seventy miles per hour.

Like running along a beach and feeling a twinge,

that right knee acting up or left calf suddenly tight.

Life is marked by hills and valleys of a marathon,

its not a NASCAR oval or a dirt track circle,

more like the endless alleys of a Syrian city;

No direction signs, no mile-markers, no rest stops.

Cell phones and SIM cards are useless.

All laptops and tablets are piled in a junk yard.

And you can’t tell me what Leonard Cohen meant,

what he means, without Google, can you?

I don’t want to go back to grinding gears.

I’d prefer to forego my Luddite musings

because there is no yesterday, no safer times.

In the first place (early Chicago winter) November 9, 2016

Posted by vsap in Blogroll, Poetry, Uncategorized.
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There was a wind swirling, and I was caught up

and the night surrounded me in a cheesecloth shroud.

It wasn’t like a tornado but like a side street in Chicago’s Loop

when lake wind howls from the bowels of winter

and I am frozen in a place where scarf and gloves don’t matter.

Taking steps are like twenty-pound weights on my ankles

with pants stuck to my legs and coat heavy as cast iron.

All concentration is focused on the next El station

or shelter of a coffee house or deli with hot tea or cider

hoping there’s cinnamon scent hanging thick in the air

as windows fog over knowing they won’t be clear until Spring.

The whole idea of survival of the fittest takes a back seat to survival

by whatever means; whatever it takes to believe in the next breath.

Thinking of a cozy piano bar with a tall drink darts across my memory,

Maybe the Palmer House after hours with its eclectic crowd,

the warmth of that buzz may help me make it to the next corner

and make me reconsider what brought me out into this weather

In the first place –

Teetering in the gale.

In the first place –

Bracing against the cold.

In the first place –

Lacking merit or grace.

As I make my way across the Michigan Avenue bridge

the Chicago River is frozen and its Wendellas are docked.

And the furious wind pushes me from left to right

then back and forth and I wish for a warm seat on the

One-fifty-One Sheridan bus to whisk me off to Union Station

even if I have no need to be there – I have a reason to go.

I begin to feel as old as a buffalo nickel, tarnished and forlorn,

waiting for a kid to pick me up and bury me in his rucksack.

He thought of this fallen society and how they deserved his boiling rage November 6, 2016

Posted by vsap in Blogroll, Poetry, Uncategorized.
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He waved his middle finger and called out “Whore!”

And the traffic moved like molasses all the same.

His nineteen eighty-four Corolla had a huge dent in the door

but he had no insurance so he couldn’t file a claim.

Everyone else is in the wrong, notwithstanding his tickets.

Speeding, weaving, a stack for illegal parking, yet,

none were his fault but he was lost in a legal thicket.

How was he deserving of things he could easily forget?

Bouncing around from cable customer service to Aeropostale,

soon he found himself on the midnight shift at the Waffle House.

In vacate hours all he could imagine was revenge for his folly,

even when he spilled syrup on a nun’s clean white blouse.

Someone more loathsome broke into his Corolla, stealing his CDs.

After his shift he had to pick through glass and assess the damage.

Bad enough theft but now stain and stench where the culprit pee’d.

He thought of this fallen society and how they deserved his boiling rage.