Ash

Tim Mayo

                                                           

For the most part it is light in weight

with the excitement of all color

having fled with the flammables of desire

 

but consider the sometimes heaviness of it

 

as if the matter it once was

had not wanted to let go

of the sweet orange of sunset

Pressure Cooker

Tim Mayo

                                                           

For years after

 

I could still see the stain

of its round statement

 

on the kitchen ceiling,

still see

 

the yellowed noodles

of chicken soup

 

hanging down:

 

a salty broth dripping

from their ends.

 

All this I still remember:

my mother’s sharp cry

 

after the slow boil’s expansion

and the inarticulate sound

 

of the locked metal surrendering

as the cooker hissed

 

then un-clammed

into full voice.

 

But the lid escapes me.

Where did it go?

 

And that sudden unsealing

of a tightly fastened world . . .

 

Father's Day

Tim Mayo

                                                           

When the Ghost of Christmas Past

comes knocking on a hot summer’s night,

 

you have to ask, Why does it happen?

For whom do we live? 

 

You need to stop drying

the wife’s dishes and put

 

the towel over your tired shoulder

like a matador’s cape;

 

you need to say, ¡Olé! when the sudden thought

of an invisible man comes to mind. 

 

You need to step through the screen door

into the steamy, green & indigo yard,

 

past the rusting swing set, it’s bubbled paint

peeling off the browned silence of its bones,

 

and past the now rickety tree house,

still cradled in the dying limbs of the old oak,

 

and on through the hole in the hedge,

as though all along you expected this:

 

the Santa Claus of fireflies

coming to take you back.

 

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