It’s been a year
since the blush was kissed from your cheeks,
with the morning sun,
leaving us here
with only the chill of starless night
as a guide.
How the void you left behind
like restless ghosts of marigolds
and burnt almonds,
from room to room,
fingering dusty frames
and long abandoned books,
Yet, I see nothing.
Shall I look behind bookcases
or cobwebs in dark corners?
Under the stacks of magazines, you never read
or those secret places—
old purses and shoeboxes--
that hid your treasures
from prying eyes
and sticky fingers?
Where is that
I once found bitter
that, now, tastes so sweet?
Won’t you sing to me
just one more time?
sprinkled from God’s fingertips,
slice and burn through Summer’s night
to dance and play atop the barley,
resting, gently, noble crowns upon
smooth brows of boys and girls
playing in the fields.
How these kings and queens of Earth (of nothing),
swathed in paupers’ cloth
with bodies, electric, of
hot blood and light,
laugh and prance in fountain-drunken promenade
through this mortal coil, blind
to cut and scrape.
O, flowers among the chaff,
with cheeks, sticky-sweet with red plum jam, and arms, outstretched,
I pray those luminous wreathes and heady scepters never fall
as you leap, and twirl,
into the sweet oblivion of your starry fields, for
just beyond the horizon
False Knight on the Road
Atop a valiant steed with a head full o’ rags, the road beckoned, stretching—long—into a realm of darkening cloud but lined with gold (for the taking) that peeked just above its rough-hewn surface like new growths of spring through a winter snow. Emboldened—a plastic sword in one hand, held high and kissed by the sun, and Youth for a shield in the other, a battle cry, fearsome and loathing, escaped his pink lips, claiming what little was his (and everything that wasn’t)—its resonance, lost in the surrounding expanse of harvested barley fields, littered with chaff and cigarette butts from passing cars.
As a heralding thunder rolled in the distance, hazel eyes searched the summoning horizon for portents, signs of castles (and dragons) he could conquer beyond the ruins of his dying kingdom and dying queen, finding nothing but the billowy black of a closing road and hints of wet earth, disturbed by the fall of a heated rain. Seeing its glitter fade with the noon sun, he and his valiant steed abandoned their vain quest—never started—and returned home to the cold comfort of their crumbling halls---Truth weighing heavily upon frozen brows—to put away his toys and beat the Golden Bell’s call to jubilee.
Lay me down
just beyond the back porch,
where the pomegranates grow—
a stone for my pillow,
grass and pink evening primrose for a quilt—
beneath playful trickles of sunlight,
sieving through branches,
to the burden
of those fateful red globes.
How I could pass these languorous days
lost in shadow plays
cast upon these eyelids too heavy with sleep—
of mists and stars
that stretch and fade into
to the familiar knells of horned larks
that ring from behind
blush and yellow blooms
of lantana trees just beyond the gate.
Or to roll, smooth, pebbles and twigs,
caress the backs of shiny, black beetles,
between cold fingertips
dug deep into wet earth,
conjuring up ambrosial moments,
of the taste of that sweet, red nectar—
those wanton streams of warm
that dribbled down my tongue,
onto countless white t-shirts
of patched jeans,
leaving me forever wanting
and feasting on shade.
one day you’ll come along, take a bite and say,
“Hey, David’s tasting good this year.”
Gold crowns, so eas’ly
snatched by morning star’s glamours.
Youth, a fickle weed.
David Estringel is a writer/poet with works have appeared in The Opiate, Azahares, Cephalopress, North Meridian Review, and DREICH. His first collection of poetry and short fiction Indelible Fingerprints was published April 2019, followed by three poetry chapbooks, Punctures, PeripherieS, and Eating Pears on the Rooftop (coming Summer 2022).