Archives for posts with tag: fragility

Strategy

Do you throw morsels
over your shoulder
when the wild dogs
are at your heels,
hoping the distraction
of your incomprehensible
generosity will give you
time to retreat to your
barren world once again?

From this place,
I throw up my hands
not in despair, but surrender.
I negotiate my own freedom
by finding what is still human
in the inhumane.

Quiet the beast,
and danger returns
to its slumber.

Blessed are the peacemakers,
who pave the muddy trenches
with ten thousand rose petals;
who see the fragility
of the monster,
and skillfully placate him
so that the vulnerable
can slip away unnoticed.

Is not all true kindness
without condition?

Some would say
I am the fool.
But the true fool
bites the throat
of kindness
and by doing so,
cuts himself off
from the only thing
that might save him.

Claire Juno, © 2014

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Last Ride

I am made of metal and ride the rails,
a hulking machine of pragmatic power
whose sole purpose is to roll from suburb
to suburb, the sleepy green towns
west of the city, lately covered in fresh
snowfall, their domesticated bliss now
subdued in the brittle night air.

I deposit these fragile human beings
gently onto platforms and pick them up
at quaint stations. Sometimes I do all of this
backwards. But at the end of the day,
it’s all the same: a track that volleys me
from one point to the next, from the city
to the outer bounds of my route, day in
and day out.

Faces become familiar to me with time,
and I can feel the warmth generated by
body heat from the various passengers
deep within my belly. I am like the whale
to their Jonah, only God did not send me,
and they are not running away, nor
climbing aboard to learn a lesson.
They are just along for the ride.

So you can imagine my shock to see
a tiny, toy-like car driving toward me
on the tracks at dusk one January night.
It was silver and eerie in the fading winter
light, almost like an apparition.
My eyes shone upon it and my heart
reared up like a spooked horse but
my wheels could not stop.

I shouted with my horn; I screeched,
I warned, to no avail. My passengers
lunged forward in their seats, awakened
from the monotonous trance of their
daily commute.

I grimaced and shut my eyes
at the grotesque sound of crashing metal
and glass, and when I dared to look again,
I saw a young man floating away curiously
up into the night air.

My conductor was beside himself
with anguish, and emergency vehicles
accumulated. I was quiet and still
as my passengers strained to catch
a glimpse of this awful scene through
my clouded windows, wondering when
they would get home, the idea of which
now seemed half a world away
to us all, though one day I suppose
they will reach it in an instant,
the fastest ride they ever took.

Claire Juno, © 2015

…this may be a vanishing post; it is intended to the memory of someone I lost, but for anonymity’s sake, I may not keep it on my blog indefinitely…

Blind Guide

Follow your heart
to the ends of the earth,
to your big red balloon,
to the edge of the cliff
and beyond, to your doom.

Follow your heart,
hither and thither—
watch your brain wither
as your heart takes the wheel—
watch your heart laugh
as it pilfers and steals.

Follow your heart,
though everyone warned you
it’s a fool’s errand you run.
See where it leads you,
toward folly or fun—
(though the two are by no means
mutually exclusive).

Follow your heart,
reality be damned—
follow your heart,
see where you land—
with your head in the clouds
or buried in the sand—
any way you break it,
it’s no man’s land.

Claire Juno, © 2013