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poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the category “Poetry”

Billie Jean


She’s flashing blue now
that should tell me a thing or two
instead leaves me questioning
why the color blue

First & foremost she’s good to go
she of course a fine device
a slim machine conjoined to the wall
by a simple lifeline

Secondly & likely lastly
she’s bound to change her mind
and consequently the world
solar flares & electrical surges
turning her sublime eyes from
subtle blue to crimson red




january two thousand twenty-one
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the death of late december


and so it has arrived
in all its glorious finality
slowing all good things down
some to an inevitable halt

no winter is the same
each returning with an agenda
colt forty-five concealed at the hip
cradling the rifle like a baby

setting traps on ponds & streams
frozen solid to the naked eye
encouraging & enticing
there is nothing left to fear

indeed you’ve reached
the end of the line [again]
exposed but not exhausted
you search for another way out




january two thousand twenty-one
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Coup d’état


The doors & windows were wide open
and anybody & their dog
came right on in
no questions asked

But then something changed
paranoia having slipped in from the back
spreading carefully worded lies
and soon anybody & their dog
started slamming shut
all the windows & doors

There was much finger pointing
about crossing party lines
and letting in the enemy of the state
who seemed to have managed
to change all the locks
surprisingly running the entire show
from the outside looking in




january two thousand twenty-one
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

wish you were here


it was the dead of winter
and those flowers we once shared
bloomed in the back of my mind

I’ve kept anything but busy
self-isolated in my mystery cottage
placed perfectly atop cedar hill
unable to set foot outside
for fear of freezing to death

days turned into nights
nights well lit by candlelight
open books scattered throughout
sonnets recited by dead poets
their voices reverberating
as shadows against the walls

early morning birdsong
slipped past single-pane windows
like a long lost lullaby
putting out the very last flame
and folding fast my tired eyes




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

a matter of patience


sad woman
coming in out the rain
sheds a tear for no one
down in nashville town

the rain washes clean
her mind at ease
a patient heart considers
every little thing

we all remember
how it used to be
early morning prayers
pleading for fairness

so many faces
up & down music row
mostly quiet anymore
like a lonely avenue

and so the rain
returns another day
sad woman
learning how not to cry




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the man in black


at the trading post
I was told I could get
anything I wanted
but what I wanted
was already taken
by the white man

I was a little man
way back then
maybe so to this day
but I’ll never forget
that man who never
kept his eyes off me




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

lost in your thoughts


I’m lost inside your world
more complex than I had imagined
if I had ever imagined at all

there’s no such thing as a wrong turn
avenues becoming opportunities
discovering your every shade of grey

yes there are windows & mirrors
behind many a door along the way
auto-opening with each step I take

inner beauty hasn’t an end
your voice guiding me to the edges
unearthing pearls along the way




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

in a deep sleep


there is plenty of evidence
but a preponderance of fools
unable to piece together
the facts laid out before them

who knows what’s happening
behind these virtual scenes
where the truth turns a blind eye
and nothing is what it seems

this interconnected sphere
looking more & more like a matrix
encrypted data in a book of dreams
stolen right there in broad daylight




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the deep state implodes in nashville


I feel conflicted by my present
state of mind
impelled to uncover that which
I cannot explain through extensive research
always leading me further into myself
inside a mind that has no end

the deep state continues to control
that which it will
whether as far away as the middle east
or right here in these united states
operating well within public view
further adding to my confusion

this ringing in my ear did not start
by accident
and may easily be connected
to the at&t data center in nashville tennessee
where I’ve never set foot
but probably have visited often




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the beautiful people


there is something in the offing
meant to overtake
this age of evil
where men in power
have become savages
rendering useless their own people

there is something in the offing
a golden age if you will
destined to overtake
this age of evil
the natural order of things
restored by all the beautiful people




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Christmas day came & went


All I wanted was a compass bike bell
I didn’t even know they existed
until I saw one in the JC Penny catalogue

Christmas day came & went
and there I was delivering the news again
right along with the early bird

It’s easy to learn to grow old
while you’re the youngest of the bunch
learning quickly at an early age




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

inside these walls


you keep coming back to me
in your subtle ways
but at times I feel so tired
        at that very instance
I fail to realize
what it was you said
or didn’t say

the smell of burnt electricity
eventually brings me
back into the fold
        rhetorical questions
without any answers
slowly smoldering
inside these walls




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the coffee shop


we heard the coffee shop in new bohemia
had some local beers on tap
so we went in to check it out

it was a damp morning
going on noon I suppose
and when we walked through the door
heads looked up
and eyes rolled

we shrugged our shoulders
and walked past the cashier
took a seat at the far end of the counter

this used to be a dog grooming place
and then a tavern I explained
and she nodded her head while reading
the menu on the chalkboard

the help never looked our way
and at one point
a busboy washed some cups & saucers
right in front of us

I imagined it would just be a matter of time
before someone approached us
to ask “what will it be”

we looked at each other
and then at the cashier
at each other
and then the cashier

meanwhile one customer after the next
approached the cashier
placed an order and made payment

behind our backs was a glass door
with a well lit exit sign above it

after six or seven minutes ticked by
we shrugged our shoulders
and haphazardly snuck out the back door




december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Anthropocene


The report argues that as humans and the planet together enter a new geological epoch — the Anthropocene, or the Age of Humans — all countries must account for the pressure its people are putting on the Earth while confronting dramatic imbalances of power and opportunity.


Anthropocene

Let the arguments commence
epochs are difficult
to define
ready
set
[have far back do you want to]
go
but this one
this one             is much different
having involving
the human collective
[at least the smarter of the bunch
if you want to call it that way]
putting us squarely
            in some form of geologic
compartment
like some form of arrogance
or hubris or self-flattery
believing the influence and the force
has become
                        god-like
able to move mountains
and destroy
            beautiful cities
with a single
solitary command





december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

I pledge allegiance to thyself


here we are vulnerable to the masses
as much as we are vulnerable to ourselves

hitting the streets by any means of conveyance
now just as dangerous as staying put
doors locked & curtains drawn

so much of what’s out there has become
unrecognizable emotion
passions transformed into rage
the latter on the loose throughout the streets

what is to become of all this insanity
and where do we possibly go from here





december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

short summer nights


three hummingbird feeders
hang from the rafters
inside the old gazebo
located in the back far corner
of the property
one hundred some steps
from the sliding glass door
refilled every daybreak
by the old man
the homemade nectar
prepared the night before
by the missus in the kitchen





december two thousand twenty
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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