... Applachia ..., ... beauty ..., ... country ..., ... girl ..., ... home ..., ... life ..., ... love ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... the South ..., ... winter ...

mountains me

when you return
me to the
mountains

you return
me to me

they bore
me in Cities
of men

but my form
was hewn with
granite and marble

my skin stiched
with invisible seams
of laurel and ash

kudzu and Better Boy* eyes
Brunswick stew glued
i am whole

vine ripened
towering beneath
giants, oak and pine

my blood runs
over river smoothed
stones, frigid

but pure,

when you return
me to my
mountains

they welcome me in,
a long lost friend

*a variety of tomato

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... Applachia ..., ... Autumn ..., ... beauty ..., ... country ..., ... death ..., ... home ..., ... life ..., ... pain ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... winter ..., ... written under the influence ..., ... Yule ...

First Morning of Winter

Earth rose slowly today with
sleepy slumber eyes;
seems the first real

rain of Winter has
come to strip the last
of the leaves and

wash the empty bones
of summer from the
ground. the air

is crisp and wet
and gelid in the
nostrils – quenching

fires inside like
salt water to the
parched, intrepid stowaway

aboard some quiet ocean liner
cast far, far away from his home.
how he must long for

the familiar comforts
of heart and hearth and
the sweet smell of

winter cakes and
pecan pies wafting
through his mother’s house

in the first quiet stirrings
of Yuletide and a
coming new year.

the days are dying short now,
and the shadows fling
themselves along the wet

forest carpet, like macabre scenes
of people stretched out long
on the rack, across the

browning skin of an
entire planet, settling
in for a long Winter’s repose.

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... addiction ..., ... Applachia ..., ... experimental ..., ... humor ..., ... life ..., ... love ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... relationships ..., ... the South ..., ... time ..., ... winter ...

thirty-nine

i remember my Dad’s 40th
birthday party.

the most talked about item
was a large banner printed
from a dot matrix printer.

it hung the width of our front porch.
everyone in the neighborhood came out
to see it.

it read, “Lordy, Lordy
Neal Cowan’s forty!”

the whole place was a buzz.

what kind of world were we living in
where you could print your own
banners? from a computer?

(a Commodore 64 in fact)

it was 1985.

now i post pictures to the world
from the Himalayans, or Cozumel
or the bathroom – using my
goddamned phone!

my diary is a blog, read by thousands
of strangers…. ok well, hundreds,
ok well, a few.

now i tweet and kik and text
instead of sharing secrets
with a best friend using
our G. I. Joe walkie talkies.

now, i’m 365 days away from 40
and i’m twice as old as my dad.

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... addiction ..., ... Applachia ..., ... Autumn ..., ... experimental ..., ... life ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... relationships ..., ... the South ..., ... time ..., ... winter ...

i’ve nothing much to say

words
hemorrhage from my mind at times.
in gushes of red colloquy.
rich words.
now and again the efflux is so
rampant that i can taste
the mineral in the air.

then fall oozes into winter
and the words become diluted
and i find myself mitigating
this new reality; that in the
bleakest of days
i’ve nothing much to say.

so i girdle my heart,
and patch up
the contusions with pertinence,
and cover over the wales of
my Master’s lash with clever
anecdotes that never actually
stymie the flow.

there are
no bandages to keep me from
completely bleeding out.

there
are only more words from an
incessant heart that cannot
seem to muster any single
truth. all attempts
have proven caustic to
my soul.

so here,
another year ends and
i’m no closer to myself.

and old man winter has no breath to
freeze even a single word in place.

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... beauty ..., ... country ..., ... death ..., ... life ..., ... love ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... sonnets ..., ... Spring ..., ... the South ..., ... time ..., ... winter ...

Sonnet #13

In the waning gray spectacle of dusk
Yellow breasted finches struggle in our
Spring’s sprinted return. He breathes brawny musk
On the spritely flesh of her back for hours.
They peck and gather in sweet maiden haste
Absconding all vows with Winter’s harsh trials.
And tears they had shed; all joy but a waste
Each droplet felled and saved in sacred vials.
Their nests caught bare and scattered by foul winds
Twigs of new budded branch inspire again!

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... beauty ..., ... country ..., ... death ..., ... life ..., ... love ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... relationships ..., ... Spring ..., ... the South ..., ... winter ...

A late Winter breeze

A late Winter breeze licks
The very last of Summer
From your skin.

Bony tree fingers curl around
Invisible cords of Light
Garnishing nothing.

Having shed last year’s verve
Take my hand and walk
Through this death Womb
With me, into irenic Spring!

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... beauty ..., ... country ..., ... ghosts ..., ... girl ..., ... love ..., ... poem ..., ... poems ..., ... poetry ..., ... relationships ..., ... the South ..., ... the sun ..., ... winter ..., ... written under the influence ...

Today shone of your eyes.

today shone of your eyes, dizzy with
cloudless blue, blemished by our one
sun blister bouncing on horizons.

while brown fingers poked holes
in the crystal sky. she tilted her head
and smiled, sun specks spiraling

in her eyes, and with a wave of the
hands, and a lilt in the leap, she
kissed Winter goodbye.

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