Thursday, May 1, 2008

Joy Harold Helsing

The Panic Button

What would happen
if I pushed it?
Would lights flare, sirens blare,
strong men suddenly appear
to douse the flames, slay the dragon,
save the helpless maiden?
Or would the men who came
wear white coats
use soothing words, syringes
and restraints
carry me away
to some safe haven
where I might recover
from my fear?
Some days
even that scenario
seems appealing.

-first published in Psychopoetica


The monkey in me
pokes and pries,
sees the world
through simian eyes,
has no inhibitions,
feels no shame,
wants what it wants,
will never be tame.

-first published in Poetalk


Back there the fertile loam
was umber brown,
rich and moist with humus,
home for beetles, centipedes,
earthworms, moles.
Grass and gardens flourished.
So did I.
Here the dirt is rusty red,
talcum fine, adobe hard
in summer heat, clogged clay
in winter rain.
Only stubborn native plants
survive for very long. I can’t
put down roots.

-first published in Poetry Depth Quarterly


So many places I have lived
so many roofs and rooms
streets, stairs, doors, keys
views from my window
people left behind
Oh, to be
moss on a log

-first published in Brevities

Unfinished Business

Some people are harder to let go
than others. Those you long for most
are often those you never really had.
The mother who kept threatening
(and sounded as if she meant it)
to give you away. The father
who worked seven days a week
and hardly spoke when home.
That first love who married
someone else. The cheating spouse.
The grown child who never writes or calls.
Now you.

-first published in Poetalk

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