Santa Cruz Good Times

Monday
Jan 26th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

The Poems of Troy Jollimore

ae_JollimoreREGRET
I’d like to take back my not saying to youthose things that, out of politeness, or caution,

I kept to myself. And, if I may—

though this might perhaps stretch the rules—I’d like

to take back your not saying some of the things

that you never said, like “I love you” and “Won’t you

come home with me,” or telling me, which

you in fact never did, perhaps in the newly refurbished café at the Vancouver Art

Gallery as fresh drops of the downpour from which

we’d sought shelter glinted in your hair like jewels,

or windshields of cars as seen from a plane

that has just taken off or is just coming in

for a landing, when the sun is at just the right angle,

that try as you might, you could not imagine

a life without me. The passionate spark

that would have flared up in your eye as you said this—

if you had said this—I dream of it often.

I won’t take those back, those dreams, though I would,

if I could, take back your not kissing me, openly,

extravagantly, not caring who saw,

or those looks of anonymous animal longing

you’d throw everyone else in the room. I’d like

to retract my retracting, just before I grabbed you,

my grabbing you on the steps of the New York

Public Library (our failure to visit

which I would also like to recall)

and shouting for all to hear, “You, you

and only you!” Yes, I’d like to take back

my not frightening the pigeons that day with my wild

protestations of uncontrolled love, my not scaring

them off into orbit, frantic and mad,

even as I now sit alone, frantic and mad,

racing to unread the book of our love

before you can finish unwriting it.

LOBSTERS
tend to cluster in prime numbers, sub-

oceanic bundles of bug consciousness

submerged in waking slumber, plunged in pits

of murk-black water. They have coalesced


out of the pitch and grime and salt suspended

within that atmospheric gloom. Their skin

is colorless below. But when exposed

to air, they start to radiate bright green,


then, soon, a siren red that wails: I’m dead.

The meat inside, though, is as white as teeth,

or the hard-boiled egg that comes to mind

when one cracks that crisp shell and digs beneath.


Caress the toothy claw-edge of its pincer

and you will know the single, simple thought

that populates its mind. The lobster trap is elegance

itself: one moving part: the thing that’s caught.

Tom Thomson Indoors
The installation man didn’t understand:
“You want your doorbell on the inside, sir?”
Well, yes – didn’t he grasp it? Only fair
that prior to intruding on’t, he give
the world some sort of warning. (Not that world
had shown the converse courtesy to him . . .)

Now stands he in his foyer, on the verge
of entering the outside – how will it be,
how changed since last time? – sounding patiently
and regular as Kant – every twelve seconds –
that calm announcing bell. Will someone come
and let him out? At some point. Understand:
all good things come to those who wait. And then,
wait just a bit more, and they go again.

ON LOCATION
Even in the midst of my dream I found myself in a field of wildflowers.
Even in the midst of those flowers I stood alone, like an antenna, like a lighthouse in
the ocean.

Even in the midst of that light I felt, deep in my chest, a scared animal’s craving for
darkness.
Even in the midst of that darkness I could hear the cicadas’ song.

Even in the midst of song I remembered that I had been born in a bowl of silence.
Even in the midst of silence the words of my language swarmed around me like flies.

Even in the midst of that swarm I could hear the director shouting Action!
Even in the midst of all that action I managed to take your hand.

Even in the midst of that swarm, that song, that silence, I found the resolve to kiss
you.
Even in the midst of that kiss I knew you and I would end up on the cutting room
floor.

WANT
Who’s to say I’m a poet? I fear I want
too much: to live a life like a song
that’s picked up by others’ lips when I find it
has passed from my own. A wandering kiss
my spirit will live in. Your house, even when it
is empty, yet speaks in a faltering voice,
like waves on the lakeshore we both know. My heart
grows younger with time, its slow, serene stammer
like waves on the lakeshore. We both know my heart
is empty, yet speaks in a faltering voice:
My spirit will live in your house even when it
has passed from my own, a wandering kiss
that’s picked up by others’ lips when I find it
too much to live. A life like a song?
Who’s to say? I’m a poet. I fear. I want.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.