Thursday, October 28, 2010

For Dad

I will not wait for
your approval
You see
I’m getting older
now and I’ve learned
that chemicals, unlike choices
are for keeps.
And we’re both not sure
how to address this
roadside bomb
so it sits patiently
waiting for

You were always there
in increments.
So divided.
So practiced.
Mornings haven’t been the same
without 5:00 AM and English Leather.
The familiar sound of your razor.
The slant of light
through my bedroom door.
The groaning hallway.
Your heavy hand
across my head or
the shadow of your car
moving slowly up my wall.

I want you to know that
I always wondered how it felt
to be inside your flannel armor.

I want you to know that
I am struck by your ability
to only cry visibly twice.

I want you to know that
two strokes later and I'm afraid
time gets your heart before I do.

I want you to know that
I was always your son
even after my sex betrayed you.

Copyright (c) 2010 by Vincent John Ancona

After Love

I wish I could be on your
You’re just that
I couldn’t be
from you
if you were
12,500 miles

Your angry tears
drop like
bombs a

It’s the smoke
that really

Copyright (c) 2010 by Vincent John Ancona

4 Years

It must have been like this:
I was sewn so tight to your shadow
that my own reflection abandoned me.
At night my chest was wildfire
and in our bed which was once so alive
my soul was being leached out
by your neutral spine.
Your heart is OK the Doctors said
throwing pills at me like stones
similar to the ones they used
to murder their feelings long ago.
Four years was a journey of love and hate
until we finally transcended both.
And in that empty moment things were
so terribly quiet but so terribly loud.
Imagine how it felt
to arrive in that foreign place
where the promise of everything that was once
so good in your eyes
had become an unrecognizable inferno where
we could only fail to avoid the daggers.
I carried the love that became our disease
in my arms like a baby
unable to stop feeding it because it cried out for more...

How do you kill a living part of you?

It was in letting us go low to the ground
on that unmarked day
that I spread my arms wide again
and reclaimed my shadow
piece by scrambled piece
even if all I had left to assemble it
were my poor and trembling hands.

copyright (c) 2010 by Vincent John Ancona


People die faster
than time takes the body.
If you don't understand

Watch us...

speed trepidly into the future--
souls trapped within the carcass
of the roadkill we call memories.

Watch us go...

unwillingly into our plastic cells
free as the words that briefly danced
on the tongues of our persecuted.

Watch us go in...

to homes where the beating heart
ebbs and flows and
must also adhere to gravity.

Watch us go in flames...

Ash, bone and ego
rising up in such trivial smoke
you'd barely know we happened.

copyright (c) 2010 by Vincent John Ancona

Ode To Silence

I don’t mean to single you out

nor do I mean to draw attention to myself.

As you know, I exist in you

as we all exist in you.

My nights pour soundless like dark molasses

and my days, clenched tight by your deafening fists...

are stronger than any force I’ve known.

This beating heart, this throbbing universe

needs more than vibrations to sustain itself.

Perhaps everything exists to avoid you.

You embody empty rooms and shadows and

things that can’t breathe.

You are the heartbeat in my couch

and the pulse in my blinds.

Though even inanimate objects will eventually defy you...

you will outlast galaxies.

There is something inside you louder

than any noise.

You do not need me to make room for you.

All of empty space is where you

soundlessly stomp us out.

I make empty promises to myself each night:

Not to name the cracks on my ceiling...


To be both gay and happy..


Not to plea with God...


To hold more than myself...


Not to see answers through chilled light...


To seek out the great sound

that was lost in your

bottomless echo...


Copyright (c) 2010 by Vincent John Ancona