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Posts Tagged ‘childhood’

Between Buildings

As children we sought new hiding spots,
explored between houses, down paths,
under benches, through gaps in stone
walls and wooden fences, between
churches and tombstones and stained
glass in day light, sheds and gardens,
between buildings where strange, unseen
flowering vines hid in summer,
unpicked fruit trees blossomed and no one
noticed us, they never even looked,
they wouldn’t have seen us
even if they tried,
even if they wanted to,
we had found the gaps to dance and sing in.

Peace in cities is in the wanderings
down side streets, alleys that lessen
the humming of the universe, where
graffiti can be appreciated and life can
be seen, felt in every window and on every
balcony, families sharing meals and someone
sitting out enjoying a beer and a smoke
listening to the radio,
the urban plants do their best to clean the air
between buildings, the only stillness left.

Then there was us in Venice,
it is better than they say,
being lost in Venice means anything
you wish it to mean, there is no
childhood pretending needed.

The apartment we stayed in had a
neglected courtyard between four walls,
over grown, cracked, forgotten, rusty barred
balconies and ripened vines, tattered drying
clothes out on lines, the sun was trying
to touch it all, the climbing plants grew
where it was possible to grow in the gaps
between brick rows out of the beautiful
sinking city and rose like
our heart fires rose.

At night, to look between buildings
into that city slivered sky, chasing
what can’t be seen, perhaps
a star or a place, some dream in the gaps
that dreamers dance between
what’s been built and what’s been felt,
in the veins of the city, or of the heart,
in the center, in between it all at night,
there is always hope for a small glow
of faint warm light.

Kyle McHale     2016

 

 

 

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Christmas Eve

Enough sun is left hanging low to
turn one side of everything golden.
Depending on how you enter into the fading day,
your mood is decided by which part
of your body enters the light first.
Golden hands. Golden feet.
Golden heart. Golden mind.
Filtering that light the neighborhood,
sifting that horizon gleam, every house,
every chimney, every small branch on every tree,
seeping into things as it passes by until it hits you.

Gold-kissed flurries swirl around,
gentle wind swept snow clouds whip up
and look painted in the cold sky.
Wind enough to chill your breath and let it
wrap around to your opposite ear,
almost a whisper to yourself,
wind enough to sneak a snowflake into
your mouth to melt on the tip of your tongue,
freezing all other senses for a moment,
or maybe you ate a flake of gold that circulates your veins,
maybe those clouds have gold trim like one of
your childhood pillows had.
Maybe it was all there just for you.

Standing where you used to live, thankful.
How could you have ever moved away?
How could you ever live here again?
Which side of you must be golden?

One day in the future on this night,
you’ll sit in a chair with a good view of the room and the tree,
among certain things, everyone else asleep,
whiskey in hand,
perhaps a fire softly roaring if you’re lucky enough,
what will matter most on that day of all days?

Your thoughts will say, “I hope what’s golden is seen
by those for whom my love is truly meant.”

Kyle McHale                                2014

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Deep at the Roots

When the light fades over the hills,
The world quiet and resting,
Among the creatures place you sit
At odds with what you are thinking.

Know that life is fast, life is slow,
Sit and rest in your wooden chair,
Breathe it all in to cycle out,
Trust your thoughts to that low lit air.

Let it take your troubles out there,
Sit easy for a time and then
Your thoughts will spread in that soft wind
To find you back in a time when

Dirt and cricket chirps had meaning,
When nothing mattered but the sun,
When crayfish waited for your small hands,
When you first had to trust someone.

That breeze will bring it back to you,
Remind you life is not that way,
Then as the early night time falls
Be thankful for the warmth that day,

And sweetness flows deep in the ground,
That pulsing life just under foot,
Just dirt and crickets singing loud,
Touch all of life deep at the roots.

Kyle McHale      2010

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Grandfathers and Legends

That only in the world of theirs,
Something round the rocking chairs,
That only sit on hallowed ground,
Wisdom coming through as sound.

Just gather round, gather round,
A proper spot that must be found.
What light is there from you to me?
A glimpse of it I wish to see.

Tell me something I don’t know
About a battle in the snow.
Tell me something I need now,
About the time you fought that cow.

Tell me something of your love,
A passion that I know not of.
Tell me what has made you strong,
A mystery or favorite song.

Tell me how you’ve lived so well,
I want to know the secret spell.
Tell me something of your youth
When you discovered simple truth.

Tell me something of the land,
Of how you worked it with your hands.
Tell me something of a friend,
Of how you saw him through the end.

A story told to me I’ll keep,
And think of when I fall asleep.
A glimpse of hope I can dream on,
To carry with me when you’re gone.

Kyle McHale      2012


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