jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “poem”

bullets in the pantry


soup is on the stovetop
italian vegetable
burner set between
medium low
and simmering

outside it’s snowing
inch after inch after inch
ever since early morning
still waiting for plow
to come rolling through

on the kitchen counter
handwritten letter
remains left unfolded
kept in place by
handgun paperweight

there’s a candle burning
on a nearby table
house cat scratching
at the back door
pleading to get away

footsteps can be heard
pacing quietly
throughout the place
stir crazy perhaps
or simply bored to death




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

an act of exposition


it was a matter of time that your life
became mainly a flashback
like a character in a dickens novel
stretched thin on a cold march day

it was a matter of time recollecting
faded images of a former self
one plodding alongside trout stream
aided by spear tipped hiking stick

it was a matter time accepting
the thought of looking back
plunging the blade through the ice
shattering what was once indestructible
and exposing a brand new world




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

disproving a course of history


having grown tired of the same old
same old
I’ve gone searching for something new
some kind of different story
one that’s never been told

won’t you take my hand and go
searching with me
weaving through well worn
and not so much beaten paths
until at last

there is quiet resolution
to what’s transpired in the past
as if those imperfect moments
mattered not
as if those infrequent mistakes
have been laid to rest




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

working on plan B


I hadn’t thought things through
how to get from one place
to the next

it’s cold outside so I start
a fire inside
put a few ice cubes
in a rocks glass
reach for what’s left
of a fifth of jack

by this time I’m supposed to be
somewhere else
where the sun shines
both night and day
but somehow I got stuck here in iowa
where fair-weather men and women
easily come and easily go

I’ve got enough wood to last
another lifetime and a half
but oh how I love
how it talks to me when well lit
coaxing me to get up and dance
suggesting almost jokingly
this may be the last waltz

I put down the whiskey
and pour another
chuckling inwardly how it’s
going to take an act of god
to get anything melting around here
anytime soon




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

getting to know thyself


the faces are inspiring
whether real or appearing
in one-off dreams
faces in the crowd
popping up from one spot
to the next
by any means necessary
be it by foot or uber or bus
or train or aeroplane
exhibiting happiness or grief
pain or sorrow or glee
eyes and mouths wide open
or reluctantly shut
teeth clenched or relaxed
pale-faced or rosy-cheeked
hurried or stymied or grounded
it matters not

I swear I know
each and every one of them
much like how I know myself




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

for sale by owner


I’ve a handgun hidden somewhere in the house
given to me for reasons undisclosed

one day I’ll be selling this place and buy
something with one less story and twice the yard
so I can start a brand new perennial garden
complete with beehive and lean-to greenhouse

as far as the former house is concerned
I’ll be selling ‘as is’
buried maps and long lost treasure included




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

lost in the crowd


it’s not even mid-february and already
the weeping on the streets
goes by unnoticed

it was just a couple of weeks ago
when the thaw was in full bloom
but that was short-lived
and now once again
the weeping on the streets has resurfaced
one hundred fold

what is to become of all this weeping
this unforgettable sorrowfulness
all too present yet seldom recognized

and what are we to do
standing unnoticed in the crowd
reaching out in furtive attempts
to make a difference




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

stealth maneuvers and vanishing moons


the moon is always there
whether you see her or not
whispering sweetly
when you’re fast asleep
or screaming relentlessly
when you can hardly breathe

sleet and rain join forces
pounding rooftops and
concrete sidewalks
tearing up the scenery
with ongoing ruthlessness
— but inside all is calm
fire burning slowly and barely
audible in the den as you
stride effortlessly from room to room
occasionally peering out
the octagon-shaped window

she is here inside this place
[you tell yourself] over and
over and over again
I know for a fact she is here
but the house is empty
[save yourself]
outside the sky is nonexistent
while inside all that remains is an image
running madly through your mind




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

haiku rocketman


glass door opening
calming voice beckoning me
time to move forward

map on other side
unfolded and revealing
cosmic traveling

escort in red cap
accepting one-way ticket
handing back the stub

rocketship rumbling
buckling in for final ride
counting down from ten




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

breaking away once and for all


I wasn’t supposed to be driving
but I backed out and raced away
shifting gears as if it was yesterday

the radio blasting out old time rock
drowning out any unnecessary noise
attempting to get back inside my head

I’ve not been indoctrinated since
growing up in the sixties and seventies
yet another alleged victim
of the great american experience

fast forward and today is an altogether
beautifully different story
one restarting from a fresh perspective
where there’s nobody left to blame




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

with no place to go


I’m sitting in a rocking chair
next to the bay window
paralyzed
a ray of light shining through
warming my hands

inside a clock is ticking
a fire burning
eyes shut tight I listen
to the house settling
as finches gather
in nearby spindle tree

I’ve watched the cycling
of the seasons
for so many years gone by
seemingly
from this very place
where the passage of time
simply stands still




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

when it rains


there is precipitation in the sky
improvising as falling ice
pinging partially-filled glasses
and producing magical notes
music piped into the city square
unexpected dancers sporting umbrellas
smiling under artificial light
twisting and twirling and portraying
life as a grand affair




february two thousand nineteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Post Navigation

%d bloggers like this: