Poetry by Richard Kovac

Mysticism 101
We are the words
of whom the universe
is the discourse
without ever end;
there is no darkness
in the "dark night
of the soul" -
only the drops
of the Christ's blood.
Each other word is
of middling length and
stress -
the cosmic poem;
not earth,
the universe,
is home.

Shadrach's Fire
This fire is tame
and tastes
like warm milk.
It sounds
like the crackling
of breaking twigs.
It looks like
souls ascending.
It smells
like dragon's breath.
To touch it
is not to sear,
but to soar.
This astonishes

Dandelion Wine Before Winter
Several yellow dandelions
still blossomed outside,
and I showed my wife,
who agreed: "Incredible."
All the other flowers
are long since gone
and we are at the season
of mourning turkeys.
(Would that the people
mourned instead.)
What have we done?
We have called the inescapable
"a weed", but it winnowed
in every wind,
and we are surfeit of it.
If only we could rejoice
in ordinary beauty
like today,
and not some cynosure
that won't long stay,
dandelions may bloom in winter
some fine day.

The Other
"Hell is other people" (Jean-Paul Sartre)

Why can't
the existentialists
clue in
that "The Other"
is for reaching
the part of my back
to scratch
where I can't reach.
We are like chimpanzees
and back scratching
and gratuities
are what make
society tick.

Made From Words
As listened to here
every man
whom I meet
is a word,
more or less
of middling length
and stress.
All the words together
make up a poem
that flutters
in the universes
like ticker tape
in A Fifth Avenue parade.
of the individual poems
are outstanding,
others insipid.
Some rhyme.
Some don't.
This one doesn't.

The butterfly
has been demeaned
into a tattoo
on the calf
of some young thing
who gives out
"half and half".

The dragon
on your brother's arm
is apocalyptic
To arm wrestle
with a dragon
is pretty tough.

I see the world
in tattoo form,
upon the shoulders
that succeeded Rome.

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