Emergency

_Ambulance_.jpg

Look, I know what happened

Here.  It’s summer.  Remember,

How we freeze in winter?  Well,

In summer, it’s too hot.

She collapsed.  She hit her head.

 

She feels light headed, her vision

Drifting like a cloud.  Someone,

The teacher maybe, asks her

A question.  No, she says,

She’s fine.  No, no water,

She says.  Someone helps

Her to sit.  She collapses,

Hits her head.  No, she says,

I’m fine, don’t call my husband.

 

They come, the EMTs, ten

Or a dozen, no one counts

As they beehive around

The still form, taking vitals,

Setting up a stretcher.

Three fire engines wait

Outside the door.  They

Rush her to the hospital.

 

We all wonder what

Happened.

 

C.J. Prince

                ©2018

Where Do You Hide Your Pleasure?

banana split

 

 

If you leave ice cream

In the freezer too long—

Your favorite—maybe chocolate

That makes your endorphins soar,

Or vanilla, so creamy

Your mouth has an orgasm,

 

But never strawberry,

Always artificial, never

Succulent like freshly picked,

Sun warmed juices dripping

From the corners of your mouth

Like your grandfather’s

Labyrinthian garden,

 

 

 

But real ice cream

Like rocky road, cookies and cream,

Cocoanut, caramel, pistachio, peanut butter

Creamsicle, sorbet, spumoni,

Thirty-one flavors plus

One hundred and one more

 

But not Neapolitan

Where you try to separate out

That strawberry strip,

And you fail as you let the chilled

Sterling silver spoon whip up

A generic moosh

To hide the faux strawberry

Assault, still

 

You can’t keep ice cream

Locked up for months

While you pretend to be

On a diet.

It crusts over like Antarctica,

Texture slivers, bitter, freezer

Burn, stale as a dumpster—

Just vanilla with hot fudge,

like love, you must consume it now,

hot and cold,

While it consumes you.

C.J Prince

copyright 2018

 

Control

ay_102025493

 

Control

After Kay Ryan

 

Say when a blizzard

cannot make

your nostril hairs

more frozen

or it is always

67.4 miles

to town

no matter

the season

whether you

lean forward

over the steering

wheel or try

to relax,

the distance is

always the distance.

The road might

be closed

but you

drive around

barricades

the way you

live life.

Even if the donkey

nudges open

the gate and the sheep

follow, even

then at midnight,

you escort them

back to the barn

when you shake

a tin of corn

like a ceremonial rattle.

It is not magic.

Just species

communication.  You

break ice

on the stock

tank.  No

new lambs.  Life

waits until dawn.

If you’re lucky.

Luck is incidental.

You cannot

divine nature’s whims.

C.J. Prince

©2017

Attending the Dawn

 

kephera

When did you first listen to the tale of Kephera?

In your grandam’s lap or at the feet of the goddess?

No life exists without the Scarab god Kephera.

Each day he rises from the dung heap of horizon

to ease the solar globe from the clutches of night.

 

My ancestors and I attend the daily ritual

for no dung heap exists in the galactic center

without the skill of earthworms.

We  are dawn’s assistants

to He Who Raises the Sun,

the Keeper of Cycles of Light and Dark.

It is I who attend the daily alignment of stars.

 

When you remember Kephera,

Remember me as one of service

to the greater good.

C.J. Prince

©2016

A Kenning of Bones

 

 

 moon, bay, tree silhouette

She ken his foot-rhythm

but did not turn.

The opal of the night

would reveal him soon enough.

Before stars succumb to Kephera’s gift,

they will stand unwoven,

sink to silent moss.

Throats cannot contain ecstasy.

C.J. Prince

©2016

Five Foot Two Eyes of Blue

-Rustic-Kitchen-Table 1950s

 

God damnit, man, you’re late for dinner.  Again.

Sit up straight and act like a young lady.

 

Okay.

 

What did you say?

 

Yes, sir.

 

What happened to my little girl

who was all smiles and did everything right?

 

She eases out of the wooden chair,

Walks to the backdoor, opens it,

steps out into lemon blossom air.

Turning slowly, she opens the back door again,

Calls out

 

Hi, Mom.  Hello, Father.  Sorry I’m late.

I got pregnant and just had an abortion.

 

It is Mama who opens her arms.

 

C.J. Prince

©2016

Precision

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

I didn’t know                                     Mama said

Lily of the valley                                Agapanthus

California lilac                                    Ceanothus

Golden Seal                                         Hydrastis

 

We didn’t just say “avocado”

but Hass, MacArthur and Fuerte.

Any questions?  Go to the dictionary.

C.J. Prince

©2016