10 Best Poems of 2017

These are my personal favorites from my original work this year:

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10. The Velvet Jungle
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9. De Ja Vu All Over Again
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8. Dance
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7. A Few Concerns
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6. Landing From A Leap of Faith
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5. The Bags Under My Eyes 1 of 2
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5. The Bags Under My Eyes 2 of 2
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4. SpiritualBeingsHumanExperience
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3. Fight Fire With Water
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2. Come at Me, Universe
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1. Sun and Moon
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“…gracefully surrendering the things of youth.”

Many a time a conscious mind willingly went astray,

into the woods of vivid colors and mysterious sensations.

Many memories survive of the times when smiles were wide,

The air so dense and murky, rain clouds wondered what we were up to.

‘Regret-me-not, forget-me-not’ is the protocol I put on these good times I recall,

but all-in-all, the realm we call ‘reality’,

on its baseline,‘au natural’ level is what I most currently enjoy.

 

I have a large cache of long-term recollections, fueling introspection toward the past,

but looking back on the few late nights in recent days, long since my change of ways

I see the best of times depend on the ‘who’ around me;

the ‘what’, ‘where’, ‘when’ and ‘why’ matter far less in retrospect.

I now celebrate sobriety in my own mind, quietly.

I’ve learned that good company matters more than something to ingest or breathe in;

it’s not cool to me anymore.

 

White Cuffs

White cuffs peek from the green sweater

With my name etched on the right side pocket

In classy, white cursive.

My navy blue slacks get a little tattered at the heels,

and eventually my Reebok Classics look a bit too ‘classic’ to wear.

Running, playing, making friends, playing tag;

My school uniform can’t keep up with me.

 

White cuffs hidden by a navy blue blazer, but keep

peeking as I keep speaking behind turned teacher’s heads,

Being a pre-teen with my pre-teen friends, who don’t care

if our blazers’ gold buttons break off while trying to catch a football.

The tie color changed, but the letters on it didn’t.

 

My white cuff sizes went up as my voice went low,

collared shirt now hidden by navy blue sweater.

Full-blown hormones, surrounded by pretty girls,

every turn, every twist, every class, every locker,

girls all over the place! And they think I’m cute?

I can get used to high school and my biggest  white cuffs so far.

A bigger, different sweater every year til I’m 18,

and as I graduated I thought the white cuffs on my

button down shirts would be all but eradicated.

 

For a while, a dormant crowd of white cuffs hung on their

sleeves, that hung on their collars, that hung on their hangers,

that hung on the pole in my closet, and that’s how I liked it.

After 14 years of a shirt and tie, 5 days a week,

the preppy look in my mind mind was canned, and

band tees and Vans kicks were in, and they looked sick!

So my weekend wear became the apparel of my undergrad years,

but I still feared someday I would be an adult that ended up

dressing up for work, no earrings in my ears,

and be the guy in a suit and tie having a beer.

 

The premonition came true, but much better than I thought,

cause what I feared most isn’t true; In my suit and tie adult life

I don’t feel much sadness or strife. The latest upgrade is the set

of black suits, nice ties and white shirts I wear, day in and day out.

I thought it would make me feel square, lame, or wack,

but a big part of me feels like I’m back on track.

 

The premonition turned out much better than I thought,

I’m wearing white cuffs again, but I’m more happy than not. – RSM

Theories on Random Tears

At times I feel a teardrop or two well up from inside

for literally no reason at all. I don’t even feel sad,

angry or upset. I don’t feel bad at all, yet my tear ducts

get wet. My emotions are as calm as a still lake during a clear

weather sunrise during Autumn, but at random a tandem of

salt water tear drops drop and tear through my otherwise dry cheeks.

 

It’s not when I yawn, although I tear up then too, and I have better

things to write about then trying to lie or vouch that I never cry out of

emotional distress, like the ‘manly man that I am blah blah blah’,

That happens to me too, although it’s not what I’m referring to.

I reply to an email at work and feel that stuffy feeling like I have one tear

from my left eye surging through, emerging; I catch it before it hatches

all without the tear-appropriate emotions.

 

Maybe I’m in a conversation about how to get to the nearest train station or

something similarly generic and I swear it, I feel a tear or two irrigate into the

outside world, surfing over my pores until I end the unexpected clear streak with a

baby-soft swipe around my eye(s) with Bruce Lee quality quickness to cover it up.

 

I have theories, from simple to downright trippiculous:

One of these is that somewhere in a parallel universe,

my other self is experiencing some kind of sadness,

and through some cosmic mystery I feel my pain from another plane.

 

I also have thought that past lives stay with souls as time goes.

Maybe unbeknownst to me I’ll see a stranger from my old family tree,

or maybe I’m in some kind of place that subconsciously reminds me

of my previous realm of existence, and all but a couple of

 

emotional

 

liquid

 

droplets

 

fall

 

one

 

by

 

one;

the rest is hidden within the past,

my inner being’s sealed memories of a previous life,

trying to claw through to the present.

 

I could just be more tired than i thought, and I know I’m not the only one,

so imagine what kind of deeper meaning and spiritual cleaning these random tears

can have, teeming with multiversal emotional information,

or the life you lived before you lived this life,

telling you “There goes your cousin!” or “Look! he was your wife!”

 

Or maybe it was just a yawn. -RSM

 

 

The Dance

It goes in a circle.

The steps are the same as yesterday.

 

Next step, then the next step, no time to look back at the last,

engaging the minds, bodies, emotions of the dancers,

very talented, highly trained, always distracted.

Eventually all the dance floors close, and their weary feet

readily head home, trading old media for new to always stay distracted.

 

Easy come, easy go are the dancers’ spots in each ensemble.

Nothing is more important than dancing to them all; the next

dance they do, jazz shoes to buy, routines to learn, auditions to study for.

So for sustenance and survival, our daily shuffle comes back around. – RSM

 

Buzzer Beater

Running, running, running,

half a block down, I hear the train rumble through headphones blaring,

scaring, whizzing by old ladies, taking their grandkids to school,

my own backpack clapping against my spine as I fly down the hill,

up the stairs, MetroCard in hand, swipe it at the turnstyle,

turn a hard 90 degrees, I hear through the breeze rustling nearby trees:

“This is a Manhattan bound 2 train, the next stop is-”

jumping upstairs 2 by 2 with toward the 2 train the 2 doors closing I reach the platform,

and race for the doorway, like my feet haven’t met enough of the floor today.

Ding-doong. Already warned to stand clear, I throw my body into the open space, and just

barely beat the closing doors, as they seal shut on the first try, and into the sunrise and

working day, the barely open eyes of mine and fellow train passengers ride. -RSM

Thunder on the Beams

Six lines of magnetically charged metal beams shake, bend,

and take impact over and over from a storm for the ages.

Thunder booming, as if nature had rhythm

and dogs go crazy and bark back at the sound

of the violent downpour raging in and around the steel beams.

The sounds of the storm increase, rooms begin to tremble,

the people below close their windows and pray

to have the thunder cease for the day.

An earthquale approaching, it seems,

and as its most unnatural sounds wail and scream,

SNAP! Breaks one of the steel beams,

Weathered by the hurricane to earthquake nightmare.

That’s when I figured I should put my electric guitar down for a while.

I need new strings now, and probably pissed off the neighbors too.