As we walked slowly through the Forum the Coliseum receding into the late afternoon, the Virgins stood patiently as befits a priestess trained to avoid the stares of passing men, even tourists such as we were, the columns staring down reminding us of our youth
despite the birthdays that we celebrated with the joy of togetherness, and the nagging knowledge that we were another year closer to that moment we refuse to acknowledge, aware always of its growing proximity.
We stare back at the Coliseum, as the sun slides behind its walls, and as the vendors selling all manner of items the buyer will regret in mid-flight home pack up for the day, I imagine Caesar pausing in thought then, sneering, turning his thumb down.
What are words of wisdom from the mouth of the ancient ones. I tell you these are such words. You may accept or reject them as you will. Better still, tear this page from its binding crumple it and cast it to the four winds. Let it be carried off in ten directions.
I would love to know the precise moment when the consensus of critics reached the tipping point, that lettuce was no longer a green, but some lesser vegetable.
That would be around the time that Arugula and romaine declared themselves something other than lettuce, leaving iceberg and Bibb as produce outcasts while spinach, kale and chard openly
declared their superiority over all of the others, shunning mustard, if only for its name and seediness. It is surprisingly like that with poetry, literary free verse a critical darling now
even if intelligible only to those skilled at self-aggrandizing, easily sold delusion, and more run of the mill poetry, that whose meaning is clear without resort to layered metaphors left to rot on the shelf.
a day, clouds drop rain replacing tears locked inside stones and cloth red and blue unseparated still worlds apart orderly ranks all at attention and silence thundering anger a mad world soaked in peace only until midnight.
If you walk into the room and many are meditating how will you know which is the teacher, which the students?
If one sits on a higher platform will you assume him teacher and ask the depth of his Zen. If he comes down to you and says he has no depth to offer do not think him a fool. When you sit at the bottom of the ocean and look down the water beneath you is shallow but the surface of the sea cannot be seen.