the yellowing cranes

the riverbed is cool the cranes have a yellowish belly but are beautiful nevertheless there are bleached soda cans but the logos hang strong against the California sun i sit by the reeds and watch the Chinese couple dig in the mud for long lost jewels they explain the husband is originally from Kansas she says i watch on until pitch black leathery little birds with mean diamond tinged eyes and beaks yellow like egg yolks begin to crowd around catching tadpoles one stands on a mossy Takis bag on the trail bicycles travel north to south and vice versa i only see helmets from my shivering reeds somewhere by the train yard an old trash truck backfires and the mean little black birds lift up into the sky like a flamenco dancer’s skirt my eyes pause at the rim of Dodger stadium and out of nowhere my mind drags me to the summers eating sticky juicy watermelon slices with my sister as the grown ups drank howled and listened to the game on an old radio from their army days and now i wonder if they died knowing that some day i would be leisurely sitting by these LA River reeds sipping fancy tea watching treasure hunters and fancy bicycle helmets wiz by and are the yellowing cranes the souls of our lost boys from the Hanoi Hilton

where the dusk of the living sighs

You higher power

Holy Ghost

Dove of Peace

Lord of Abraham

i have always loved You

not in a temple home

or candles steeples crowns of thorns

i’ve loved You through his venomous smile

the flowers on the bush deathly sour

the raindrops of my heart

through the ruffian storm of my disease

the nails that bind me to this salt

that seasons human behavior

gawking at birds pinned in the drowsy sky

dots of tenuous freedom

i’ve loved You through his lips of lies

midnight dips

of hazed oblivion

through my veins i thought of You

hollering the choked mangled Hallelujahs

i have always loved You

on beds of death

i’ve laid my head to fester

my lips quivered caving inward

the name of the unobtainable Highest

cardboard hallowed sidewalk snares

i’ve loved You

fearful through the steps i took

where the dusk of the living sighs

falling feathers

black feather floating from the sky piercing gravity on it’s way to the ground where its little gray tips will be dampened with winter weep i stare at cranes by the river’s bed standing on a stick like leg waiting for the shooting stars for miles and years i’ve been right here looking up at falling feathers

mbrazfield (c) 2020

odd behavior

to practise a kind of common sense now would it make a difference medication domination exaggeration death of what we used to be for good bad or indifferent what is it in the seed of them that twists them this way would i know if God instructed it have you ever screamed trapped on your own dream while the glass walls shattered in your castle beware it could be real this panic that i feel while getting pushed into the forest

la cuisine du chat

granite vinyl floor
false wood boxes
mac and cheese coffee tins
purple bran cereal bowls
window facing south
just the five freeway
somewhere on the fridge
the phone buzzes Van
shimmies face to face
with those wild nights
cat food plate just a few
orange crumbs left
of the meal she ate
water boiling rolling steam
tea leaves lemon and green
zen light amongst the top of tree
tail wound around her paws
a few splintered thoughts
snug between my head
two souls listening
as the city birds chirp
for her and me

can’t figure out

why we dream so distantly where the planets question who we are

black holes surrender in perplex look at each other in their deep blue eye

and say forget them

could be that in Tennessee my heart i left there beating

nature are you a conscience forcing me to look at the destruction of the muffler in my car

this morning she a strange lady clutched me in a surrender of half breed slumber

children screaming for their cereal and when i come to they were asking for some pop

hesitant

it doesn’t seem so long ago

that i smoked some cloves

was listening to the Pogues

and drifted into some world war

that i’ve only seen in film

over at Grauman’s Chinese theater

my blues are turning black

and though i opted out of methadone

it never meant that i was strong

will i ever say farewell and laser off the scars

of the circumstances of our battles

at two i’m getting up to pee

the midnight birds are wrapping up

the roosters will shortly crow their song

across the street with the old Japanese couple

i like to think that yesterday’s gash was really a fluke

but the book teaches that we must be quite honest

not being responsible enough to make a decision

i straighten out the linen closet instead

until the sun washes away my pain with her golden arms of fire