At the Brink of Time


Where infinity fades fuzzy

As an impressionist’s paintbrush

And time wrestles with gravity

To pull us off into the dusk

Our longings will be nothing

Nor paralysis of choice

But birds to catch unerring

Familiar fleets to be rejoined

We will sample secret pleasures

And journey where we never spoke

Carve bowsprits from feathers

In between the brushstrokes

And I will hoard your laughter

Your warm, admiring eye

Before the canvas darkens

And at last I say goodbye

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Pine


Her nails were pine green to match her dress, and she knew that he was looking at them. She didn’t usually paint her fingernails. Even looking away, at this point, could be a provocation.

She looked away anyways. She wished that they were stranded deep in a forest in winter, snow creeping hot then wet then blisteringly cold up from her ankles.

Somehow, for him to actually lift up one of her hands – fingertips under fingertips – was the last thing she expected.

“Did you paint them just for the party?”

It was crowded, the sour haze of alcohol, and they were standing in their own little pocket by the sink. A window flung wide open, a searing January wind. That was what she needed. Her hand shot backward to hide between her skirt and the counter.

She could not do anything about the hand holding her glass, however.

 

Island mountain sea


Image result for ocean at night with stars

Follow me down inside the island

Where the emerald will burst open

Galaxies pulsing unfolding

Setting Earth above a mountain

Trees at the bottom of the sea

Drag me down inside the mountain

Living lightly and rushing loving

Down cave streams to the island

Spinning stars in that rock ceiling

Reflection on a forever sea

Image from gerald flock

Embrace


She leaned into him with the side of her face pressed to his breast, and breathed carefully. He was still as magnificent as when they had met, all elegant features and perfectly placed hands, skin translucent like the sheen on a pearl. Rich mahogany locks fell past her eyes and she was jealous, a jealousy that burned straight down to her will to live – only to crumble into love.

“I was so ashamed, at first, when I couldn’t stop looking at you. Because I thought that you would never look at me.” She has told him this before.

He touched her shoulder, very tenderly, since that was the spot that felt cold at the moment. She wondered again about their children. Long gone, scattered pieces of their hearts – what was it about the half-elves that always made them go?

“You will have others after me,” she whispered, knowing it because it hurt. “Others, in other lives, because in your one life you have many lives when compared to me.”

His nose was near her hair and his lashes were lowered for he looked only at her. But because his eyes walked a different stream of time, he saw her as she had been when they met, he saw her as she was now, and he saw her as she would be in the grave. She was multifaceted and trembling and precious. He pressed his mouth to the top of her head and she couldn’t stop the tear that squeezed out.

“Normally,” she whispered, “normally we die knowing that the ones across from us are just gone, or are not far away. But I don’t have that with you. And you will have others.”

He was not like her, this was true. After a while he lifted his mouth, shifting to stroke her greyed hair with graceful fingers, and he told her that she did not understand. He would not have another.

And by his saying she did not understand she then understood. They went quiet, in waiting.

*

Elizabeth Cook, 2015

Rain


Desert Journey by LoopyWanderer

Do not be deceived; this world is nothing more

Than a desert

Once, great beings walked here

Long before we were born

Now, even the green places must be counted dry

Shifting, and empty

For They were as water

And we live without memory of Rain

Elizabeth Cook, 2015

Image created by LoopyWanderer

Monsters


I had monsters made of string and mismatched things

He has them still, in broken bushes and stolen pages

Treasures he would imbue with heart of yew

With goblin blood and petty cruelty

I ridicule and remonstrate but still I watch him every day

All I have are bundled strings and working things

Kempt surfaces and cubbyholes

And I know that he fights monsters, but all that I observe

Is the snow left to shovel, the spills left to cover

With disposables and paint

I had monsters made of string and mismatched things

And they were wilder and brighter and stronger

Than words could fashion or he could imagine

Should anyone write, or should he try

He won’t think to try, and the streets haven’t dried

Of the cars and ice and time that are mine to fight

While he makes swords and fiery floors

Always, in the corner of my mind

 

Elizabeth Cook, 2014

*

My sister knew right away what this one was about – having the younger brother that we do, and having seen how he and I rarely get along.