Upon Stealing a Kitkat

You’ve taught me how far
I can go toward myself.
No need to run from who
I am.

That’s how it is with us.
Windblown fragments,
two are we.

We live in a shareable place
our little patch of green.
where I’d rather hear you
than all.

We converse fluently in
a language only we understand.
Your charm never lies in the
way wedding songs and
love sometimes do.

In my head you’ve cut a groove,
leaving your initials there
Absolute. Right. Permanent.
They tell a story even when
my mind shifts and happenstance
grabs the pen.

The darkest ink is not dark enough
to eradicate the thought of you.

Our kinship, a sonnet to pathless
woods, always ready to explore.
We reach for a state of grace,
Knowing life can only get worse, but
better too.

Tosha Michelle

White Hillsides and Falling Into a Leap

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Calming breath as I walk in the cold. The sky cast in a sober shade of melancholy. On the ground a thin layer of snow, lined by my footprints, creating a circle. Feet that have lost their direction. No faith in the journey. My heart blue with evening. My soul in the dark hours. My mind in paraphrase.

It’s a New Year. Time to let go of past regrets, focus on the now. Toss out our bad habits and scrawl a new list. Do I still have use for such things?

Soon January will mutate into February. Hibernation is a kind of conservation, I remind myself. I could live inside, sleep until spring comes. Let my dreams refurbishes and rehabilitate. No longer full of Cinderella wishes, but still wishful.

I’m not as young or as uncomplicated as I once was. My spirit has never been still. The future is an Edward Hopper’s painting, a lost penny on the side of the highway. Perhaps, this is what purgatory is like: the scent of falling snow, the taste of ash, the endless road of what was, the journey to what will be.

As I walk back inside. I catch a glimpse of myself in the living room window. For a moment, I see the reflection of the girl I used to be. Shy. Timid. Meek. She was always happy to linger in the hallway outside her life.

Would I go back to the days before I became unmoored,  before my life accumulate in experience, sorrows, and lessons learned? I don’t think I would. A dust free existence isn’t really living, is it? The artful dodge is only artful for so long.

Perhaps, Purgatory really is where we understand the multiplicity of self. That what’s left for us, is what we make it. Maybe I’ve been trying too hard to remove myself from the syllables. Perhaps, there’s grace in the old nouns, adjectives, and verbs, and hope in the new ones.

As I go to close the front door; I note my footprints, and how the snow looks brighter and softer in the half light. Could it be my steps have purpose, even if the heaven I’m looking for isn’t there?

-Tosha Michelle

Variations


I call him eccentric
He thinks it’s a reprimand
He doesn’t realize
His exquisite eccentricities
reveal his unique inner form.
like Gould last recording of
the Goldberg Varations

His illuminated soul
seemingly always in motion.
I read religiously his light.
Text etched with acid.
but cut with gentle sweetness
The light only growing brighter.
He coaxes me out of my
shadow box.

I could take refuge in his uniqueness
The magic of his mind, linger there
in the smudge of the stars.
Let him read the face of my spirit,
my wildest wishes, the lure
of eccentric things
Framed by endless strings of grace.
A concerto of serenity. defined
composition, melodic hope.

-Tosha Michelle

Heavenly Day

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The sky announced the sun
on a day when the sun’s arrival
was enough.

The clouds curtseyed and then
fell away.

The dogwood branches swayed as
with divine provocation.

The poppies pondered providence
the afternoon light, and alliteration.

Lovers and children were devoting their hours
to the wind and newly sprung gardens.

Coins were tossed into fountains devoted
to wishes, on a day so bright surely all
desires were fulfilled.

All day long, the sun lingered as if
a love sick suitor hesitant to say goodbye
to the now blushing sky.

Sadly, the sun learned you can’t roll
back the hours or the day’s resolve
to fade into night.

All you can do is abide the darkness
and await the promise of another spring
struck, soulful blue day.

-Tosha Michelle

And the Truth Spills Out

Let’s imagine that
you love me,
and no light can dim,
no faucet can leak,
and no one can take
you away from me.

Let’s imagine you love my risotto
and seared salmon,
and that you drink the wine,
the Scotch, and the tea.
Your eyes constantly on me.

Let’s imagine I’m what you imagine,
and I can cook risotto and seared salmon,
and never let your glass run dry.
All with my eyes on you.

Let’s imagine we had chemistry to spare,
that we are all warm mouths, and entwined limbs.
The eyes of the sun and the mountains.

Let’s imagine we weren’t the long read,
that took moments to unread.
The storm cloud that spilled
from our shattered wine glasses.
The headlights that flickered out.
The seared salmon that went cold,
the burnt risotto in the pot,
the empty glass in the leaky sink.

Now let’s focus on one true thing.
Your lying mouth and treacherous kisses.
The way you hurt me. Your eyes always
on the next best thing.

-Tosha Michelle

On the Clouds Eating His Shadow


The clouds drank in ravens
making the pines lucid.
His shadow fell beneath
the sky. If she listened
closely, she could hear
his melodic cadence
delivering soliloquies
adrift on the wind.
He as he was
She as she became
Awake. Aware.
Taking color and form.
Both somewhere between
what was there. What’s
not there. Someone you
remember and can’t
quite forget.
Lost mail on someone
else’s kitchen table.
The parenthesis enclosed.
Time takes away. Gone
in an instant particles
of the past.
She stays.

(She can’t stay)
Tired from this slow
burning off of yesterday.
That which was lost
will not become again.
She always thinks she
see gleams of him,
glimpsed and then gone.
The stem decimated but
drowning in rose petals.
No longer powerless
to the undertow.
His presence merely less,
but no longer wholly more.
His shadow falling,
falling into dust.
The only sound she
hears now is her
voice turning into
an early frost.
To every poem there is
a time and season.
Seasons that coagulate
into lost years.
In this one, she scourges
the past with lyrical ease
The wind no longer
contradicting itself.
Her pen drops ink
of flames, no longer
pointing to the sky.
Dr. Syntax gives her a
lollipop and a clean
bill  of closure. 

-Tosha Michelle