Calvarium 10

I once read about a woman who believed she could dissipate 

…the clouds with her mind

but after much thought I have decided I do not want them to go

I see all their stories

As though God Himself were

Finger painting sand art

Casually insinuating angel wings here or the mirror reflection of the map of China in fluffy white

Clouds like babies come and go

Maybe they too grow up 

Go to college, stop needing us anymore as we gaze up at them snow-globed in blue sky beneath inky infinite wonder, fields of burning stars, 

Called all by name.

When words fail

Poetry or prose.  

For the last three weeks I have had hives. Still have hives.  I have sifted words in and out of how this feels and each time all words have come up short.  They do not stop the itch. Like quack doctors, snake oil salesmen, or phone-a-gypsy psychics they play at reading my palms then leave me with no…

Balm

No remedy

No salve for my slowly metamorphic 

reptilian skin.

So I threaten them with silence or just undoing their fragile orthographic pieces unbending bes and esses into straight black lines

Because from geometry we know

Lines go on forever (in either direction)

Moving away from the itchy round helpless

Woman who once loved them

Out to the ends of time and light

To the place where God 

hears our wordless

Supplications.

Calvarium 7

After the helicopter crash I strove to get to him in time but not hard enough.  Our progress was halted for hours on the bayou highway between Lake Charles and Baton Rouge by a jack-knifed produce truck.  Seemingly no injuries besides the greens while in Alabama my father lay prone in the ICU, bandaged skull, sometimes blood seeping from the gauze dressing.

I never saw him like this.  By the time we got there he had moved on to the next thing, loosing the coils of mortality and shaking off any talk of rehabilitation.  

The undertaker told us that if we wanted to see him again in any respectable fashion (my words, not his) a hat would be required.  So we spent most of a day darting in and out of haberdasheries looking for cowboy hats.  He was a cowboy: he deserved a cowboy hat.

But the trick was size-the lingering signs of his fatal fall meant his head was swollen, maybe even still haloed in gauze?  It had to be a proper 10 gallon, XL…I had begun to think I would fail him in this final quixotic endeavor when we found an eclectic store that had beach t’s, jeans, souvenirs, and…cowboy hats.  

It was cream colored, the largest size.  They cut it in half so that it appeared to recede effortlessly nto the pillow.

Covering everything.

Calvarium 6

The boy-man on the Tarmac in Manaus, Brazil middle of the day on December 27, 1987 was wearing a Talking Heads t-shirt, and the girl inside the plane thought Talking Heads in the heart of the rainforest?  Small world, then disembarked to a claustrophobic gift shop, lined as it was with fertility statues and shrunken heads. And jewelry made from river stones, each one small and beautiful and perfect:  irreplaceable held in the palm 

of the hand.