August’s Ember- S.B.

I cannot see past August’s ember
Or guess the fallen leaves ahead
Nor feel the cold of dark December
Or smell the naked flower bed.
Lead lulls the veins and bleeds and runs
Along the aches of unanswered rest
Drowning the colour of a thousand suns
And dampens the beating in the chest.
Day and night I’ve worked my craft
Shaking languor off the arms,
Drinking deep of intense draughts
That rouse a moment’s fleeting calm.
Long through the glade and open fields
I embraced each dare and escaping dream;
Drinking the sweetness of its yield:
Made a soft hue in the cooling stream.
Someone said the stuff of life
Lies behind these jars of strife;
Behind the vinegar and the gall
Exists the fruit that does not fall.
Yet, August approaches to whip my desires
And I cannot see past its ravenous fire.


A Stranger finds it locked.

I felt full well their cringes,
Their wet and wicked skin
And when I struck that wood-
They saw no flesh-forged kin.
Through the narrow keyhole
They see not what is good
But let what lies between us
Be but hinges, hole and wood.
I knew they crouched to see me
To test me at the waist
And writhe and twist near the hole
Of what must be my face.
Think did they of my hunger
That rests upon my bones
And each sinew lulls with languor
And casts me from all homes?
Or like all did they gasp their laugh
And craft some early epitaph?
“Behind lies he who has knocked
But being a stranger finds it locked.”
Keys have I, old but chaste;
Each and every door I passed
Saw not the key in my chest
Nor the love which I possessed.