Desire

They told me to take a street-car named Desire, and transfer to one called Cemeteries, and ride six blocks and get off at—Elysian Fields! (Blanche Debois in Tennessee Williams’ drama.)

Desire named in
real conversation but
stories inflate, shock and
tempt. (Her husband’s man-love
and suicide deemed too strong
for the Commission; and her boy love?
“Why he’s just seventeen!”)
Derailed in the Land of the Dead.
Blanche’s Greek drama caught in
magnolia blossom, flimsy scarf,
near black and white. Her
place-less plantation fallen to
debauchery. Once sheltered, then
shown and shut in. Condemned.
Brando brute unmasks both raw
and hungry. His apartment, well
off the French Quarter, pokes
bets and constant craving. Lusting
after life and trading
on decency. Southern chivalry
escorts Our Lady to Castles in the
Air where her blue veined wrists,
gently powdered, reveal deep tracks.

Outside Tailgate where the player plays,
Cajun crawdads boil toy lobsters and
gluttony under the yellow moon. Green,
beige, and deep maroon steam
red on Fat Tuesday’s feast.
Marti Gras and carnival call,
“It’s okay by me, if it’s okay bayou!”

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Urban Fetus

Unborn again.
Secrets on paper
torn and burned in
pyres of canvas
and paint. A gesture of
Monet’s anger frustration fury.
Desire dampened but
dries out again.

Ecstasy, a pill a thrill
given in the closet.
(I know this after-hours place…)
Euphoria rave and
freedom by design.
We have no secrets.

Red orange yellow
burst through
fountain brush
spray splatter swirl
on Cin-cin’s stall.
Corralled by pen.
Pinned stiff to be
extracted.

Womb waves contract,
crash and contort. Artist
wall blanched blank again
for a mural moment of
graffiti, grappled with
and pressed out.
Turn away.

Washed canvas.
We have no secrets…still
I never knew some of those
secrets of yours.

 

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Mangrove

Mangle rojo
root spread wide
toe buds, stipular
ring, aerial roots.
Directionless
expanding Om
attracting light to
mercury depths,
agua caliente.
Medusa locks
reaching tendrils
tangle, entwine, clutch.
Life panting through
slippery schools,
overwash basin,
swamp bosque.
Unheeded guru.
Tempestuous wind
twists sharply at
haven below.
Knots open,
rhythmic current
pulses debris
ashore.

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Adi Shakti

Mantou dashing under
Crushing wave-bursts
Spray, splash, spill
Dash, dart, drill
Pour open skin
Shell-shock liquid glass
Center silk quiet
Gentle spectrum light
Sigh hints of You.
Bitten not dead.
Open not empty.
After the fall.
Before the known.
Found but lost.
You there, here,
and here, there.
Broken, tossed, dipped.
Returning, parting,
allowing, refusing.
Sea-slush and diadems
offering mantra
waves relentless.
Hari Har

Nothing but waves:

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1010

“Every pleasure or pain has a sort of rivet with which it fastens the soul to the body and pins it down and makes it corporeal, accepting as true whatever the body certifies.” Socrates

Amuse-bouche
Drawn in
Pulled through
Twisted under
Monroe platinum
Rounded hips
Arched brow
Breathe rouge
Bone stretch
Carmel flesh

Entrée
Fired wood
Carpet cushion
Spiral wrought
Breeze caress
Orchid bloom
Satin length
White heat
Pleasure-pain
Undone

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Encounter

Dervishes collecting sky,
sea and shore-tossed orchids
Casting Sufi smiles, pearls and patience
to those hidden in the wave’s barrel.
Lifting lantern flames to meet strummed
sea glass, verdant fingers reach to capture
sand and seaweed. Turbaned shells sigh
while coral crushes under, deflecting
moonlight and surrendering to salted
sliver torrents. Collapsing conch shell
rests as the muted tide retreats.

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Reincarnation

Tenderness awakens the cocoon of you
unfolding the silky sweetness of yet another.
Strumming until hardened into worship,
a pearl moon balances between the poles of you
spreading across indigo sky. You, a milky way of stars
undifferentiated in the nursing lips of life–
one story in time. Existence resonating through
fluted notes of you- husky and sharp.
Fountain breath of silver remaining constant
within each becoming. Fragrance without flower.
Caress without hands. Drawing at the root of you.
Seduction compelling surrender to foolishness.
Caught yet running still. Percussive pulses
awaken to one face, one body, and one breath.

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Curtains

At the beginning, it was the end.
Show’s over. Staged woman and
man after yesterday. Humbled in
why the velvet-red Baroque fringe
fluffs open to operatic deaths,
and Cecilia sings Sposa son disprezzata,
drawing breath in knee scabbing pleas,
il mio sposo, il mio amor, la mia speranza.

Tragic act caught in tissue and tossed.
Childhood taken when Willie’s blue eyes
pierce and Leon’s Lady Blue takes a ride.
Bold and desperate, propelling metal to
tumble blue, rapid flash and smash. So totaled
life’s miracle retreats to the hills in
solace and suffocation. Broken bars
patch blue and prisoners escape skyward.
Brothers (and sisters)-in-arms adoringly stroke
damaged cells of body, breath, and blood.

Auditions gave away all the parts
except for little girls or guides to
Miss Brodie’s prime. Yet knowing these
paper palaces are scripted for another.
Withering whisperers collapse heights and fail
encryption, if only, if only…perpetually
on hold. Carpool, parties and plans
await counsel. Sporting scout badges and
uncovering love by innocence re-touched.

Now, golden streams dissolve lines-dead and gone.
Life in ghost-costume (maiden, mother, and crone)
ends. Performances now delivered beyond
applause and bursting through ribs un-caged.

Libretto
Italian
Sposa son disprezzata,
fida son oltraggiata,
cieli che feci mai?
E pur egl’è il mio cor
il mio sposo, il mio amor,
la mia speranza.

L’amo ma egl’è infedel
spero ma egl’è crudel,
morir mi lascierai?
O Dio manca il valor
valor e la costanza.

Translation in English

I am a scorned wife,
faithful, yet insulted.
Heavens, what did I do?
And yet he is my heart,
my husband, my love,
my hope.

I love him, but he is unfaithful,
I hope, but he is cruel,
will he let me die?
O God, valor is missing –
valor and constancy.

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Awakening

Words arise unfinished,
current like thunder shoots
between my ears and
reaches to the heart of me.
I’m a-mused, co-opted, and
en-amored to the root of me.
Unglued and unstuck presence.
Deep inside a furled leaf
yet untouched by sun
both fragile and fragrant.
Weak though not sentimental.
Slipping under, it takes
home and mirrors narcissistic
capture.
Re-generation. Re-do. Re-take.
Morning craves and calls. Soon
skylights spread over green expanse,
open and thread gold through my chest
throwing off routine and expecting
nothing but leaf-play.

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Redemption

Don’t cry too loud (the doctor
says to the woman) you’re
frightening the others.
Remember, know, and accept:
It’s our policy to hide
truth and mandate showers.
They walk into the oven
naked and noiseless, yet
the guttural moan pushes
through. Now see them reborn
wearing straw hats in orange mists
calling to lost children
carried off by agents.
Meeting again as others they
once knew calling:
it was the worst of times.

The sprinter grabbed her phone.
She thought it was her life.
Falling she yells, Get him,
he’s taken from me. The police
collect her from the sidewalk
spitting up the obvious…
I chased him. I fell. I’m bleeding.
Unwanted blood and baby
press down embracing the earth.
The lawyer sighs to the jury (in
the runner’s defense) but
it was the worst of times.

Silence evicted. Born
by the blood of our mistakes.
Littered in betrayals binding
bad business and bad blood.
We are all waking up.
Our outer shell broken in pieces,
Reality and belief dissolve.
In truth, it is the sub-
tractions that make us see.
Though it was the worst of times,
it is the best of times.

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