On Time

(c) Maryanne Jacobsen Table of Blessings

Smell of home-baked bread and red wine,
Who will be here, watch my hair turn grey?
No moment like the next one
In my kitchenette of tears.

Who will breath into my bosom
While I lullaby them to a sweetest sleep?
A little one heralding noble beginnings
Why are lilacs late to bloom this year?

I reminisce over the fragrance on my window sill,
The warm welcome of the spring
No more within reach now
And I am not missed when I’m not home.

Come here come here, a voice whispers
The lover pours himself another glass
And as he drinks from the water of Lethe
He sinks into oblivion and love he serves no more.

Nescient of his forgetfulness
I remember everything: the long good nights,
Our long good falling and the longer goodbyes
As if they happened all at once.

And in that room as in that painting
We are inundated with choices and possibilities
And love becomes atemporal;
Or do our seconds become longer?

So long that they’re not fading years after;
Au revoir will be my short goodbye
I will only forget when I’m old,
Baking bread and sipping wine.


a theory of Love

a theory of Love
(c) Wassily Kandinsky Composition IX

can we bend the rules of Love?
no one is exempt from its course
a curse so sweet we seek it with despair
like a shipwrecked looks for rescue
like a philosopher looks for meaning
like a writer looks for the right words
the lover wants wants wants
and Love only gives…
sometimes heartache, other times bliss

we are as misfortunate to have it cross our twisted paths
as we are fortunate
and no one can deny
it is the gravitational force
that befriends enemies
that builds cities and creates sonnets
the earth’s heartbeat, the paralyzing fear, the one we avoid at all costs, the writhing agony, the never-ending blues, the crack in the most perfect plan, the glitch in the system, the only one we run towards
only to escape it

Love is a disease, an addiction, an itch
it is that which demands
and demands it now

Love, a shattering quake
the rhythm that plays on and on
a lack, an ache
it is war and creation
a grand cathedral
the ocean in one drop
the most visible star of the night sky
it is chaos
it is plural, multitudes and multiverses
you and you alone

Love, the ripper of all hearts
against all sanity
illuminating the way with candor and without remorse
the x and the y from all equations
the perfect equilibrium
that which will find a way
that which will split you into thousands of pieces
with grace

Love, the governor of all governments
the great defender of law, the best practice and the highest degree
in the hands of god, to work miracles
to lay sorrow at your feet
to create a universe for two
a delirium , a mystery, a utopia, an idyllic vision, a temporary madness, a warm season,
an illusion

fly fly little one
towards the realm of Love
give in to its whim
even when the lights dim
and fall again

act ii

There’s an Empty Red Chair in My Kitchen


There’s an empty red chair in my kitchen
At a table for two
Is it a loner? Is it a prop for a recurring show?
Why doesn’t it crumble
Under the weight of its own loneliness?
Does it envy each set of two?
In and out, in and doubt
I breathe deeply and dream of worlds
Soft sand under my feet
Saying hello to strangers
In a language I don’t know
Sailing away from an empty room
There is companionship in the fleeting breeze
And palm trees bathed by the glorious sun
I dream of lovers sharing meals and hopes
By candle lights
Dancing queens taking over a space for two
Lit only by the reigning moon
May spring come again
And with it life, love and lilacs

There’s an empty red chair in my kitchen
A reminder of what was lost
A reminder of what will fill it
Marry it marry it
Save it from this angst
Deliver it from the kitchen of lonely souls


(c) Couple by Lette Valeska

There is one year of silence between us
One year since an entire universe collapsed
When love stopped gravitating around us
An untimely Big Crunch.
You killed my love
Like you squash a dying insect
And I killed the starman in the sky
Murder stop murder stop murder

A living breathing organism ceased to exist
Crushed under the force of our insecurities
Who is exempt from the horrors of grief?
Who is exempt from love?
A theory of everything in its incipient phase
Birthed hope and all that is good in the world
Turned grey into green and mud into gold
It turned all seasons into spring
It touched me with the healing power of a thousand gods
In the wizard’s tower, I wait and wait
But there is no arrival

You are permanently there
Where I feel.
You are the noise in the background
Disturbing the sound of silence
A distant memory I keep replaying
A universe shrinking
A tumor that sucks all being
A knife in the back
The sweet poison I tasted
All to the point of no return.
I’m still craving for my epilogue
But every month feels like November
Every day a rainy day…

With you I mourn, dear little heart
The love I once found and now ‘tis lost
May forever spread out there in the Universe
Like the ashes of my beloved
Touch every soul that has once known torture
And reunite long lost lovers
Under the gaze of the moon
And young stars

I have found that there is no way
To put my universe back together
But with building blocks of love
There is my epilogue
Where waves still crash on the shore
Where leaves still shuffle and announce the many possibilities
Where stars still collide
Where artists still polish their work
Where there is music still playing
In the laughter of a child
In a stranger’s kind gesture
Little by little, this grim universe becomes bright again
Mothering new stars
All at the touch of love


I Fell in Love with the Sad Clown with the Golden Voice

Puddles Pity Party

I fell in love with the sad clown with the golden voice
You play your part so well
With humor and sadness blending like colors in harmony on the canvas
You started the world’s first joke that made everyone cry
You’re a rock ‘n’ roll diva, a snowman in disguise
The Grinch who stole the spotlight
An operatic soul with humanity as your best card
The joy you bring into our lives isn’t the kind that’s for sale
While the real clowns are running your country
You show up at the pity party
With your greatest gift
And the usual makeup
Do be sad and show the world
The beauty that resides in vulnerability
And let another tear fall
And another one…

Puddles Pity Party

I fell in love with the sad clown with the golden voice
What do I do other than go with it, where it takes me?
There is laughter and glee and the white color is growing on me
You fill in the blanks with your art’s tint
Ageless and full of nostalgia
In each tremolo of your voice
There’s a happy ending
The one I never had
A musical hug is on the menu these nights
As your art attends to my mournful soul
Bit by bit
I cherish this like children savoring chocolate with both of their little hands
Who wait for summer days when they can play for longer hours
There is whole in your baritone voice
Which hits the right notes to grasp the pain
And make it worthwhile
All we can do now is
Sing and smile
And join your circus of hopeful acts.

9 months

(c) Frida Kahlo Henry Ford Hospital 1932

9 months
it takes an embryo to develop in the womb

9 months of silence and mourning
of consuming agony and faint flickering hope
like the pains of birth
which bring new life into the world
the pains of loss bury
bury deep and cripple
my womb is empty and sewn
birthing no more, but tears and endurance

9 months to grow a tumor
to grow apart and become strangers again
completely oblivious to each other’s suffering
and joys
what stars did not align and kept you from me?

9 months of labor
screaming and kicking
out of control
a mental menopause
a forced C-section through my soul
with memories pricking like flaming needles

9 months to become wiser
to stitch a cacophonous past
and make amends
reminisce over what brought us together in the first place
the Universe
and Everything
once irrecoverably struck by the clock of love…

9 months to learn to unlove you
with no epilogue in sight
i declare the baby dead
her little’s heart stopped beating

On Poetry II

(c) Butterfly Series by Victoria Horkan

There is something peculiar about poetry. Here’s a thought I had today: I can schedule a painting session for the weekend (or all of my weekends for that matter) and I can plan my singing exercises (for warming up my voice) during the week (preferably on Mondays). But I would find it rather difficult to say that on Wednesday evenings I will be writing poetry. As if I can have an appointment at 8:30 pm sharp with a muse who will tell me exactly what to write and how to write it; as if I can plan to feel and exude my emotions as mechanically as I wake up, have breakfast and go to work.

That’s because if painting and singing could be treated as work, for which I need to show up, poetry is that which sneaks up on me from the darkest or tenderest rooms where I left the back door ajar. Sometimes it’s recognizable, other times well-camouflaged; nonetheless, it’s an itch that begs to be alleviated, a fervor to be expressed, manifested and sent out into the vibrating world. It cannot dwell in you for long because you would congest and eventually decompose. If you’re gleeful or grieving, poetry can help you express both.

There’s a reason why maybe the greatest poetry will not be scribbled as you sit at your writing table, but sufficiently close to it – standing near the window to smell the lilacs in the spring or saying farewell to someone you irremediably lost. These are the moments of nascent poems, when something within and without compels you to give birth to it.

On that (poetic) note, here are other revealing quotes on poetry that will hopefully awaken the dormant poet in you. You may read the first part here. Enjoy!

  1. The genesis of a poem for me is usually a cluster of words. The only good metaphor I can think of is a scientific one: dipping a thread into a supersaturated solution to induce crystal formation. Margaret Atwood

  2. Yet, it is true, poetry is delicious; the best prose is that which is most full of poetry. Virginia Woolf

  3. It is poetry that will save the world, not commerce. Art Professor Luther from the Glory Daze movie

  4. Poetry is the only life got, the only work done, the only pure product and free labor of man, performed only when he has put all the world under his feet, and conquered the last of his foes. Henry David Thoreau

  5. Great poetry is always written by somebody straining to go beyond what he can do. Stephen Spender

  6. Poetry is plucking at the heartstrings, and making music with them. Dennis Gabor

  7. Poetry is a deal of joy and pain and wonder, with a dash of the dictionary. Kahlil Gibran

  8. Poetry can be dangerous, especially beautiful poetry, because it gives the illusion of having had the experience without actually going through it. Rumi

  9. Poetry is an act of peace. Pablo Neruda

  10. Poetry, I feel, is a tyrannical discipline. You’ve got to go so far so fast in such a small space; you’ve got to burn away all the peripherals. Sylvia Plath

    george mckim poetry
    (c) George McKim Poetry – Poem Painting
  11. At the touch of love everyone becomes a poet. Plato

  12. Poetry is ordinary language raised to the Nth power. Poetry is boned with ideas, nerved and blooded with emotions, all held together by the delicate, tough skin of words. Paul Engle

  13. There is poetry as soon as we realize we possess nothing. John Cage

  14. If you want to annoy a poet, explain his poetry. Nassim Nicholas Taleb

  15. Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity. William Wordsworth

  16. Poetry is not a turning loose of emotion, but an escape from emotion; it is not the expression of personality, but an escape from personality. But, of course, only those who have personality and emotions know what it means to want to escape from these things. T. S. Eliot

  17. Most people ignore most poetry because most poetry ignores most people. Adrian Mitchell

  18. Poetry is what in a poem makes you laugh, cry, prickle, be silent, makes your toe nails twinkle, makes you want to do this or that or nothing, makes you know that you are alone in the unknown world, that your bliss and suffering is forever shared and forever all your own. Dylan Thomas

  19. Poetry is frosted fire. J. Patrick Lewis

  20. I have never started a poem yet whose end I knew. Writing a poem is discovering. Robert Frost

  21. Poems come out of wonder, not out of knowing. Lucille Clifton

  22. I am an excitable person who only understands life lyrically, musically, in whom feelings are much stronger as reason. I am so thirsty for the marvelous that only the marvelous has power over me. Anything I can not transform into something marvelous, I let go. Reality doesn’t impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls. Anaïs Nin

  23. I know you are reading this poem/in a room where too much has happened for you to bear. Adrienne Rich from An Atlas of the Difficult World

  24. There is a pleasure in poetic pains which only poets know. William Cowper

  25. Well, write poetry for God’s sake, it’s the only thing that matters. e. e. cummings

  26. Poetry is, at bottom, a criticism of life. Matthew Arnold

  27. A poet’s work is to name the unnameable, to point at frauds, to take sides, start arguments, shape the world, and stop it going to sleep. Salman Rushdie

  28. The blood jet is poetry and there is no stopping it. Sylvia Plath

There is no stopping it…