Three Facets




I.

It is strange to place
a smell that has been so long 
lost to memory,

to realize that
you did not feel its missing
until you found it

waiting for you, a 
breath of absence in the room
that clings and orbits

around you and the 
dying dog.  It is not yours.
It is not a gift.

It is left for us by the
living as they leave. 



II.

It is strange to come 
across a thing waiting just 
here for just you to 

find its missing at 
this right moment, next to the 
kiss that you placed on 

your mother’s brow when 
you asked her if she wanted
to go home to die.

These are not things that
I can understand.  They are
the same life.  Their deaths

smell much the same no matter
who does the dying.



III.

It is a strange place
to find yourself, on this
bare floor between these

two like epigraph
and epilogue, both ends and 
both beginnings,

simultaneous
and arbitrary bookends,
heavy with hollow.  

Who could have guessed that 
you would find your self in this 
simple act, waiting 

for you to tell it apart 
from where you found it?







A trio of haiku sonnets
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37 thoughts on “Three Facets

  1. oh; you totally arrived … at these departures … all three of them

    most words you read you have to hack through, like underbrush working out what they mean – ‘where is it?’; other stuff you read and the meaning just goes straight through your eyes and burns direct onto your retina so that you don’t have to do any thinking about the meaning, you just see it – these three facets were seen; absolutely beautiful in themselves, and therefore also as tributes … I think I’m going to have to reblog these, I can’t help myself

  2. Reblogged this on mlewisredford and commented:
    most words you read you have to hack through, like underbrush working out what they mean – ‘where is it?’; other stuff you read and the meaning just goes straight through your eyes and burns direct onto your retina so that you don’t have to do any thinking about the meaning, you just see it

  3. “to realize that you did not feel its missing until you found it waiting for you, a breath of absence in the room that clings and orbits”

    Wow. It’s hard for me to put into words how great this is. The poem is like a silence that says so much.

        • I think what I said was that I abandoned my poems to this blog but….is there a difference? I like the idea of abandoning poems to the reader. Once you let go of a piece, the reader will make of it what they will. A Dionysian abandon….

          • It’s a beautiful poem Gravity, one I’ll keep. I cared for the body of a friend’s dog who died on my watch. No where to keep it but in my cabin for a few days. That’s the visceral part. The heart part is my Dad’s 90th is coming up this year. My Mom’s 86th.
            “Who could have guessed that
            you would find your self in this
            simple act, waiting”…….. The three of us….while not exactly waiting, but we are sharing this passage together.

    • You have gotten the feel and flavor of this precisely. Perhaps for the similarity of experience. My mother died on the first day of spring seven years ago. My father died on Memorial Day, 2010. I am only just now getting to the heart of all that. Our dog died a few weeks ago and I found myself / my self in the process. It is truly a joy to share these things, as sad as they seem.
      Peace to you and yours–

  4. 🙂 first of all – wow. This is really a thickly textured, richly woven piece with all the right combinations of warp and weft.

    Second, I’m sorry for your loss, whenever, whoever, however it happened.

    Third – thanks shackled, but this is all his. 🙂 It needs your voice to it. Just do it. If you are waiting – its like the poetry before you were blogging. You never get used to the sound – it never sounds right.

    I can’t wait to hear it JCC. 🙂 Soon! (in my best teacher scolding “get your homework done” voice)

    • Thank you Mimsy — “warp and weft”–love that.
      Thank you for your kindness, and, it may sound strange but I’m not sorry. Of course I miss them both, but they are gone and that is a fact. I am finally getting to the point where I can write about my parent’s deaths and I guess the dog helped with that. These are all very rich experiences if we are not afraid to look at them. I am thankful for the growth that they have all allowed me. They have made me a richer human being.
      And…..yes, ma’am (in my best scolded-and-yes-I-know-better-student voice)….I will do the reading soon…..it is a bit scary…thank you for seeing that.

      • As used to being in front of people as I am, every time I even post a comment, I have to let the butterflies in my stomach settle a bit before hitting publish/comment. The reading – just the same kind of thing. 🙂

  5. “It is not yours.
    It is not a gift.

    It is left for us by the
    living as they leave.”

    Utterly gorgeous.

  6. These are great, JCC. I have to point out how much I like the sound of the verses:

    “It is left for us by the
    living as they leave.”

    That almost seems to me to be the rhythm of a song we might sing while drinking at a wake. And the image of a wake, with these poems in mind, on St. Patrick’s Day seems just about right.

    You have tapped into something very involved here. I appreciate the interaction between sense, memory and emotion -you never let one rule the others, they are all rolled together. This is really excellent work.

    • Thank you for the close read Jeremy. It is always instructive to see my work reflected in your pool.
      I am trying to find my rhythm. I had not picked up on that cadence, but now that you say it, I hear it. Perhaps I should scan this piece for my own instruction on my own construction…
      “sense, memory and emotion”–thank you for that. I think I may steel that and use it for motivation. Put that way, that is exactly what I would like to achieve in my work. If I could manage to do it with more control, I feel I would be that much closer to finding my voice.
      Thank you my friend–

  7. These are truly wonderful. It’s strange to read a familiar form in another voice, but it’s also enlightening–helps me see what the form can do that I’ve been overlooking. Thanks, David

    • Thank you so much for that David. That truly means a lot.
      I feel that I, this form and this subject all found each other at a fortuitous time. Again, I thank you for that. It is surprising to me how often this form seems to fit my thoughts.

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