jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

hunger strike number two


she asked me to inspire her
but I was incapable
having become exhausted from a
fortnight of self-deprivation

you’re so boring she says
and I nod in agreement
anxious but not really
especially after agreeing
to give eating another try

I bought some grapes she said
but there are seeds in them
I hope you don’t mind

of course I mind I said to myself
for once beginning to understand
what it means not to be heard



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

what’s on your hard drive


joseph had been missing for many
days and the sheriff told lois
mary was a person of interest

she kept insisting he had called
an uber driver the day before
to pick up their son in san salvador

but no such records ever existed
according to law enforcement
but law enforcement had nothing
to do with their predicament
that is being trapped inside
a jesus christ superstar song



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

it is written


it’s a quiet enough street
designed by some fool who
hated utility poles and
loved to throw horseshoes

of course he passed away
like any good fool does
and I took his place
at the top of the arc
an area of nonoccurrence
where delivery men know my
neighbors better than anyone

I came across his writings
and drawings when digging out
forget-me-nots that had been
taking over my life
bringing time to a standstill
and consuming my inclinations
with unfounded imaginings



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

literary incendiaries


clearly he sought a connection
one in which nobody in the world
could ever have dreamed

how quickly one learns stars are stirred
beneath the belly of its creator
like a newly born burrowing mammal
drawn to its first light

and so he imagined there were only
three worlds to discover
        the second of which
lies upon the surface itself



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

freezing of the sea


I knew once my skin had broken
things would be changing quickly

I quietly ducked down below
to retrieve a sweater

arriving back on deck I felt quite
comfortable beneath endless starlight

in my mind I was witnessing a new
moon rising half-way across the world



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

be still thy heart


be still thy heart and think of me
whenever summer breeze
brushes up against your face

long and weary are road and sky
going solo in search of love
virtual destinations unknown

time sits motionless inside looking glass
like magical portal to new worlds
casting lasting impressions



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the map room


I’ve no idea where you’ve been
but you keep telling me I appear
in and out of your crystal ball

I hadn’t checked on my horoscope
in over a week
mostly because I kept getting it
wrong on a daily basis

There is this map room I’m not
supposed to know about
even though it appears
to be common knowledge

I decided not to go there
instead stuck to my instincts
walking along the riverfront
like I do most every night
attempting to connect the dots
buried deep beyond the stars



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

taking hiatus from the city


the cease fire was nothing
more than fake news
declared by gluttonous warlords
seeking enigmatic furloughs for
scores of armies needing to be fed

meanwhile acid attacks continue
at an alarming rate
terrorizing a cautious citizenry
keeping pace with an expanding
and luxurious underground

whole cities no longer exist
while even more slowly crumble
subjected to a stronger will
and dying to be rehabilitated by
way of artistic interpretation



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

long way to Belfast


I’ve not been eating for a few days now
and yes I feel perfectly fine

the bananas on the counter have
been ripening nicely
I’m just waiting patiently
until the peels are beautifully black

I stopped eating potatoes years ago
replaced by a voracious
appetite for bright red cherry tomatoes

we always said we’d meet up
somewhere in northern california
or portland oregon
maybe for a day and a few nights
before taking flight to Fiji

from there we could go anywhere
as long as we ended
exactly where we started
according to both our DNAs



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

invasive species


there’re so many ways to keep score
you do it your way I’ll do it mine


those thousands dying from war each day
could care less about climate change

cool winds and secret agent men
come and go from man-made skyscrapers

continental shifts and breakaway ice
only separate us more

tug of war versus mother nature’s pull
nobody’s always winning

today’s swords turn into swallows
flying high at the magician’s command



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

shades of silver and gold


I’m going to take them with me
each and every one of them
I’m going to box them up neatly
like the prettiest set of flowers
ever assembled
and present them with humility
to the spirit of the skies



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

lord of the flowers


mighty clouds bulbous and swelling
swarming through dark starless skies
spinning tales of menace and fear
choosing who lives and who dies

little ones crisscross through cornfields
chasing monarch butterflies
free of cares above or below
on this earth or otherwise

what keeps your faith resurrecting
my dear flower of surprise
oh how you entertain greatness
amidst the deceit and lies



july two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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