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poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the category “Poetry”

ten most wanted


halloween is over but the visiting vampires remain
having quit giving interviews and resuming
their solitary lives inside the mother-in-law suite

she seems not to have been seen for weeks now
but they claim she moved out voluntarily
having been inspired by the uninvited intruders

at first she thought they were incorrigible angels
(which of course was an innocent mistake)
or so she was quoted as saying by the authorities





november two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

an unlikely analog


I am not what I seem
a broken clock on a shelf
stuck at 11:19 and 19 seconds

it matters not if it’s morning
or night
the broken do not know
the difference
and if they tell you that they do
they are liars

when time abruptly stood still
I learned to walk about
without having to use my legs
spending hours inside the cathedral
deciding which station
I loved the best
and hated the most

[impossible
I would tell myself
for without time
there can be no hours]

I once believed they were
angels
communicating with me
in a language of vibrations
one I learned to comprehend
all on my own

but now
I am not so sure





november two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

fragmentation


it’s what we can’t see that scares us the most
three purple aliens hovering at the door
the little one rings the bell

not everyone likes Peyton Manning
would more than likely hit the mute button
or not hand out candy on a cold & rainy night

the baseball game is postponed
for obvious reasons
a higher power undoubtedly in on the action

[it being] the car crash that killed the driver
in the early morning hours
not to mention a few dead fawns
and a number of squirrels

chili is warming on the stovetop
there’s something mysterious in the wi-fi
—the doorbell rings again





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

a masterful counterattack


the software was counterintuitive
a sad display of artificial intelligence
incapable of solving the woes of humanity

I tinkered with it by introducing a new code
like inserting a special character into a dream
hoping of preventing the man from dying

but the man never awoke
and the original code consumed
that which sought to destroy death





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

dead on a sunday morning


yes I get the point
where I don’t exist anymore
and time moves on
whatever that means

there are so many moons
yet to discover
hopping & skipping
from one to the next
as if I’m a kid again

living & breathing
outside of the fish bowl
one-way ticket
taking me to places
unimaginable





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

The Next Pilgrimage


They come from out of this world
defying the very stars that sent them
hurtling through space & time
a heatseeker homing in on sheet of ice

Having reached the top of the world
that which was magically aslumber
suddenly becomes the hottest place to be
—in a flash a brand new ground zero

From all corners the people soon follow





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

underestimation


I’m a songbird
without a song
whispering sweet
nothings

there is sadness
in the silence
this much I know

I’m a songbird
without a song
listening for a clue
on a windless night

but there is only sadness
in the silence
this much I know

I’m a songbird
without a song
underestimated
and determined

turning sadness
into a melody
this much I know

practicing wetting
my whistle
until the morning light





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

stumping for no good reason


no arms       no legs
I’ve become even more
animated than I
ever was with them
—lecturing & reciting
separating fact from fiction
[& occasionally portending]
passing along good
news w/the bad
—eyes in the crowd agaze
transfixed in ways
causing me to ponder
what good
may I possibly be doing





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

kicked on down the road


I’ve been failing at making
up words
keeping my pursuit of achievement
in good working order

I’ve been at it a few weeks now
talking to myself whilst
walking
(re)cycling
sitting in the dark
giving up multiple vices
and beckoning the god
of the spoken word
the god of voice

instead of adding to the pot
I’ve been losing
consonants
mainly by changing them to vowels
rearranging for no other reason
than to amuse myself
—kicking them down the road
like a tin can
or an igneous rock

it’s been like a whirlwind
inside my makeshift laboratory
letters on magnets
flying through the air
splatting onto anything metal





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

on this once chromatic planet


the sun is mine again
having wrestled it back
from faceless thieves
who had robbed me at gunpoint
along the lonely road to redemption


they carried with them
countless possessions
items undoubtedly dug up
on moonlit nights
from fields where lilies & poppies
flourish exponentially

no longer traveling alone
my companion is my guide
taking me to places
unimaginable
a journey free from the absurdities
of an all too fleeting life
on this once chromatic planet





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

internal prisoner [of war]


I’ve not yet started living
having been bogged down
in a dissident quagmire
wishing incessantly to be
drugged & tortured
by a make-believe enemy

[instead I am held
against my will
charged w/imaginary crimes
against humanity]

again I plea
I’ve not engaged in any sort
of alleged insanity
—and if you would be so kind
to free me from these chains
I will set out on foot
with neither contraband
nor weaponry
in a direction opposite
from my mother’s love
with nary a thought
to kill again





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

this is all I know


this is all I know
concealed in a poem
like an eternal idea
or a waxing moon
forever drifting further
from mother earth

the eternal idea
residing in a poem
the seas calm
on a moonless night
thoughts drifting
past the firelight

seas remain calm
catamarans adrift
the idea of a poem
turned into dust
chasing a comet’s tail
on a moonless night





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

your next iteration


even with all of the advances
we remain virtually the same
our emotions controlling our actions
be it falling in love or waging war
in nondescript places

habits seem impossible to break
be it religion or sleeping in
night owls constantly devising
early birds wreaking havoc
on your best laid plans

so there you go making room
for the new & maybe improved you
running into newfound friends
[and sworn enemies]
in virtually all the same places





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the insider


at the end and beginning of a constant
     forward motion ~ tectonic plates

invisible to the naked eye
     one day you imagine you’ll see

how they work in real-time
     a front row seat so to speak

keeping the planet’s wheels
     spinning literally and figuratively

throwing stones at the sinner
     and launching aerials into space

you wish you had bought a ticket
     instead burying bodies

not too far from the future

—the insider

          the end and beginning

               literally
                              and figuratively

     [back to] the future





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

radioactive heartbeats


the dynasties today
enjoy the technologies
bestowed upon them
—and those bent on ruling
by a clenched fist
turn their pseudo-citizens into
radioactive matter

it matters not what you
can do for your country
now that we’ve become
walking timebombs
repopulating the planet
[by way of decree]
two to three babies at a time





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

but what do the prophets say


this united we stand business
has long gone by the wayside
factions splitting & dividing
by way of simple arithmetic or
asexual science [depending
how you see things]

hypochondriacs are either
mentally and/or physically unwell
incapable of fending themselves
against any creature great or small

extremists resorting to threats
on any given day
more than willing to follow through with them

capitalists & politicians & criminals
work in concert in the background
spawning one conspiracy theory
after the next
worshiping fanatics & lunatics
shoving them into the limelight

all this
as the artists expressively create
interpreting what they care to see
while the historians
sit & wait
for the next piece to fall





october two thousand twenty-two
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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