Jesus Hikes



Jesus in his BVDs under a straw hat, under the falls yesterday at Eaton Canyon, under a stream of water cascading from up above, kicking back in the shallow pond.  You know the place.  Jesus doing the float looking at His navel, toes out front, Jesus with friends.  John the Baptist, I guess, and Mrs. John, a hippie cutie.   The twenty of us hikers at the end of the trail trying hard not to look at the three of them having beers on a late Monday afternoon in a three sided cave.  I didn’t know Jesus drank beer.  Wine, yes, but beer?  Imported, no less.  Mrs. John, in a pale yellow shirtdress, vintage, with rusted side zipper, the kind of cotton you can see through, the kind of cotton good for a summer day, the kind, it being almost that time of year, almost summer.  John having a smoke with the Mrs..  A stub cigarette passing between them, from John’s mouth, past his tunnel of long waist length hair, a thin wall smoking room, down to the filter, to her sweet unturned face.  I am looking around us, my five-year-old son on a giant boulder, see gangbangers have been here, maybe last night, to put their stamp overhead on the cliff behind us, claiming a rock for themselves.  Cholo granite I cannot read, what does it say?  Writing that some volunteers will need scaffolding to cover up with a pretend rock color, the color of make-up, the canyon full of color, full of fixes, full of reminders, of other visitors, other weekenders, their scatter. 

Plastic water bottles, Gatorade, doggie bags, baby diapers.  A trail of breadcrumbs to the finale.  Jesus, kicking back with friends, me thinking about stuff.  Not taking the moment in.  Thinking who’s supposed to clean up the canyon now.  Jesus.  I stifle the itch to reach, reach for the trash, I reach for my camera phone take a picture of Jesus and leave.

The Middle

My middle aged middle, getting too big to ignore.   A black hole in space on my sofa now, taking my body over, surrounded by asteroid blinkers.  You know, stars.  Like constellations gone Broadway pointing at my marquis middle, my thighs, like some melting pot junkyard in the Pacific, or creeping on earth fingery thing like the junkyard twenty minutes from here taking over the good earth, like the crazed duplication of found-agains, so many God-soaped faces in one place, so lost, so found, so lost again in so little time, like pom-pom pinks in rock gardens, stuffy straw hat garden parties way out of my league.  Showhouse gals, sipping tea, some flying high on morning cocktails without a net, no pain, no gain, pains in the arse, to be or not to be a somebody, to do so or not do so, to not die all pummel meat done in the end.  To do the day’s exercise or not.  Aw, the heck with it.  I roll over, roll the die again, then get up and go.  I just do it, walk first, then write my first line.

Afraid to Live, Afraid to Die

Afraid to live, afraid to die.

Afraid to live, afraid, afraid, afraid.

A too close fog horn sound fogging my ears,

a thunder drumming war drums drumming me,

get up, get out, go get getting, live, live, live,

begging, springing me to action, away from the itch to fear, gripping the news,

killing me mort, like a done for, afraid, a done for, in these rooms.

Yet, all of us now, still alive, a-murmur-mur-mur-murring,

a-purpurring, still alive, are still alive I say, still a-living.  But not like a-living living like still life fruit in a bowl, flowers spent already, all lived out.  A living it up kind of living, over here, over there, a life lived out to fullness, I’m just a-beginning everyday, halfway or not.  Not, not and not afraid to die.

Hold On World


Hold on, don’t jump, slow down world, let me brush your wild hair, let me brush your teeth, let me gag you so I can skid the house, the world quiet.

A knot of candy hair hit, and off he soars, reeling.

What was between hands now all run away.

The whole world foaming at the mouth, unkempt, unclean, half-dressed, half-naked, in knots.

My own tiny world too dammed up, too damned behind thin skin, thin heart membranes, too thin protections.

Ahhhh, I sigh, I weep, for him, for her, for Boston, for the ache within, for the lost souls, for our innocence ebbing,

Ahhhh, I breath, ohmming for the unfeeling, ohmming for the feeling too much, ohmming for the breaking inside, for the too much that got’s a hold of the world at the minute, a hold on me.

Wait for me world, wait one minute more,

hold me world, hold on lover world, hold on lover boy, lover world, hold on and wait, wait, wait, hold on with me,

and I will hold you too.

It gets better, got to get better, wait with me world, and let’s just breathe.

Breathe an I’m-not-done-yet-breath, a-neither-are-you-breath, neither of us licked,

holding on together breathing, each of us warming the air between us,

holding on, lighting candles, breathing, holding, waiting.

Saturday Morning Alarm

Saturday morning I tell my seventeen year old, “Might as well take your meds, since you’re awake.”

The alarm clock, his five-year-old brother, just run past me, past my was-sleeping teen’s door, down the hall, slamming noise.

Back, forth, back, forth.  Four times four.

Boy, is that kid ever revved, working some old battery he’s found, some old faithful in his never gonna break down five year old car.

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