dream docked Portland man

james-mcneill-whistler

I know a Portland man…
his salt pepper beard taps and shakes
upon his breast bone; dun trousers sag
enfold his shanks…are ragged hemmed;
with dimmed eyes he squints to calibrate
chill coastal skies

some time long past he plunder jousted trees
hewed pines and  hemlock  for a living;
on instinct now with street grimed hands
he strokes wood fences benches…searches for
the grain, caresses for the plane, encounters splinters

once virile muscles dwindle atrophy
diminish neck chest arm thigh shoulder;
once limber feet no longer spring his stride
on timber loam sod bedded deep within
a forest edged with sea storm drench
that steamed his manhood

today he vagrants oil tarred wharves
where freighter…ship…and liners rock;
he…soiled…fastened as he is with old
breathes in a rank dank ocean where
he will…dream docked…age locked
intrigue my memory

 

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by James McNeill Whistler

mead hall time of year

 

julian-beever-artist-fireplace

it’s a mead hall time of year with me
with cravings for smoked shadows
salt crystalled cod and clove mulled wine
crisp partridge and roast deer
the heart strong wild of bear…

for I must taste strong flavors
touch sweat from sharp stone walls
smooth splinters roughed in pine

drip tallow on my palm
watch dust motes drift in shafts of light
hear sighs of sea-born rain
gnaw shreds of happiness
from bones of memory.

Bonnie Marshall

Art by Julian Beever

soul I tear

dali-cadaques

 

these days my brain
is incessant solitaire…
it flips present moment
into bits and pieces
through a shuffled time

no matter…luck of the draw…
my flimsy card slip apprehension
plays sequential consequence of now
with all time wasted…scattered to a table
where a three dimensioned plane
is littered with distraction

oh…there is no damnation…none

somewhere beyond this sphere
that pulls upon me…holds me down
spreads immensity of space
where stars collapse and recombine
in chaos of a deep design
I cannot think to think

 

Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Salvador Dali