the waiting place.

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We all have our moments

where we can’t think

through the sadness.

 

The moments where

minutes become years

and years swell

with the vacancy of

what was stolen or

left carelessly behind,

 

where we’re lost in

a bitter cycle of

hyper-critical doubt,

 

where the words are

etched into raw flesh

and ink flows fiercely

from bloodless veins,

 

where hopes dissolve

into the breath filling

some other’s lungs

and dreams collapse

into shadows haunting

the recesses hidden

within longing hearts –

 

and these are the

everything moments.

 

This is where you

are the burned forest,

the exploding star,

the dry season,

the decomposing flesh

slowly offering its carbon

back to the land and

into the beating heart

of some newborn thing

whose mother ate the cow

who ate the grass

that fed upon the nutrients

and grew within the carbon

that you left behind.

 

This is where you are rebirth,

where you are possibility,

where you are life proving

its relentless will to live.

 

This is where you

are empty, alone, and

existing without cause

or intellectual use –

an inactive passenger

peering through the

clouded lens of regret,

 

wishing you would’ve

loved your leaves more,

wishing you’d said

goodbye and good luck

to departing photons,

wishing you’d thanked

the water for filling

your barren plains,

wishing you’d been kinder

to your body when it

carried you through life.

 

We all have moments

where we can’t think

through the sadness,

and these are the

moments of beginning.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2015

 

the fifth stage.

The Surreal House, by Francesca Woodman
The Surreal House, by Francesca Woodman

 One.

 “You are the house,”

she explained

while discussing

the somnambular wanderings,

dreamscape happenings,

inside of the childhood home.

         Home.

I live seven walking minutes away

and never pass it.

         Some say they

miss home.

         I avoid it.

“You are the house,”

said Therapist in

a freezing January room,

magnified white-hot

winter rays

penetrating the lace

curtains veiling

modest sacred pulp.

         (When dreaming

of wandering

through houses,

we wander

through ourselves) –

         and in the house

wallpaper was

thirty layers thick,

dead aunts

sat in familiar

wingback chairs,

parents were lost

like children,

and trash piled

to the ceilings.

         “You are the house”

with the dark curtains

and basement shower.

         “You are the house”

with the onion layers

and fruit cellar.

        “You are the house”

with the yellow bricks

and chalky mortar.

         “You are the house”

with the frantic eyes

and ambiguous borders.

Five.

They always made me uneasy,

but not this one.

This time,

the house

was as it was.

No strange rooms,

no unfamiliar decor,

no temporal trash,

no cerebral symbolism,

no shaking shell of a mother –

the house

was as it was –

plus something

filtered,

something refined,

plus something

pure and peaceful,

and it was mine.

 

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

fruits and nothings.

Kiyo Murakami
Kiyo Murakami

 

What does

it mean to let

come what may?

 

Formless words

dense with

abstraction

 

dripping with

the tart juices

of something

 

less than love

and greater

than reason

 

shock a tongue

expecting

the tickle

 

of sweet

fruits and

nothings

 

tasted and

whispered

after the

 

world was

asleep

and only

 

the stars

were

watching.

 

Bitter fruits

growing from

the soft petals

 

of decadent words

(with vibrant hues

and sweet aromas

 

that trick the bees

into yielding

poisonous honey)

 

are innocent

carriers of the

impolite pain

 

of sacred words

lightly thrown

into the face

 

of a one who

craves them

like breadcrumbs

 

toward the

eager beak of

a starving pigeon.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

persistent ghost.

Skull - Vincent van Gogh
Skull – Vincent van Gogh

 

Head throbbing with

an inner knocking

and coffee sliding

down like

someone’s died,

the sunflowers

dance around me

in strangely cool

winds of a steady

summer rain

as I try desperately

to define the

abstract sadness

hanging heavily

around.

 

Willing this

intrusive pain

to dissolve in the

static of emotional

white noise

fails me,

as some emotions

aren’t soluble in the

deepest reaches

of mindscape.

 

They take root,

growing limbs and

creeping tendrils –

I navigate

around them

denying their

existence even

while they

break through

the meniscus

of thought,

blanketing the

waking world with

the leaves of

formless sadness.

 

Everything

everywhere

reminds me of

who and why it is,

the persistent ghost

of disappointing times

unlikely to leave

until it’s given

a proper burial

and paid its

proper respects –

because life

and people

and places

are never perfect

but everything dead

deserves a funeral.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

just enough fight.

The Double Secret, by Rene Magritte
The Double Secret, by Rene Magritte

 

Riding memories

on salted ocean air

thick with loves

and pains of a

preternatural past,

the temporal space

is filled with

monsters and men,

perfumed nights,

sun-kissed cheeks,

and tired red eyes

hidden beneath

borrowed shade

as I move

through it.

 

With aching legs

and a soaring heart,

the prophecy

of pivotal change

moves with me

through humidity

and time,

proving itself right

despite jealous visions

and skeptical longings:

change happened

because I willed it,

accepted it,

embraced it,

nurtured it,

and because

it was time.

 

Here and now

the ghosts

of these nights

remain mournfully

hopeful sentinels

as I return

to remember,

and shall return

until the day

they are no longer

shadows of lives lost,

rather visions

of life gained –

 

the champions

of here and now

fighting for meaning

and honor

in a place filled

with senseless pain

and profound beauty,

eternally armed

with just enough fight

and more than

enough love

to get by.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

 

 

 

Florence.

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Januaries Ago

 

Things hadn’t added up

in the past and they

weren’t adding up again,

when I did those

shamefully invasive things

I’d never done during

nine years of lies.  

 

Opening the laptop screen

like a grave-robber afraid

of waking the dead,

I read what I feared the most

in resentfully etched

black and white.  

 

No more speculation –

no more fabrication.

There were the words alive

and here they live

branded into the fabric

of nightmare and memory:  

 

“I’m not in love with my wife …

I can’t stop thinking of her.”  

 

A July Past

 

Revolutionary lusty love,

midnight moonlight passion,

post-apocalyptic, syncretistic,

fortuitously gracious,

sea-soaked cosmic balance,

post-daiquiri Guinness

total darkness –

it all swims through

my elatedly weary mind

helplessly riding

the wild waves

of the wax and

wane of change.  

 

“It’s over and

I’m going under,

but not I’m giving up,

I’m just giving in,”

sings the lithe gazelle

in sea-foam green.

 

(In false fates I’ve

nearly drowned

again and again –

never forgetting

the familiar burn

of empty lungs

and panic;

never strong

enough to

just give in.)

 

Sometime Near Now

 

A dragon in fear

and phoenix in fire,

these salted lips

kiss faded bruises,

clinging to old gods

in hopes of conjuring

something new

from the flames of

recycled prayer.    

 

Eternally the

hunted witch

and restless

Viennese whore,

parts of me  

walk a familiar path

through the thick

emotions of a

muddled mind

and recounting heart,

searching for an

idea of peace

in faded times

of sickly love

and consuming woe.  

 

And there it was,

the peace,

quietly alive

alone,

beneath miles

of tumultuously

conflicting currents –

without lover in mind

or fortune in heart,

beckoning for

the emptiness

of certainty to

pour from lungs

aching for the

powerful peace

of uncertainty,

finally convincing me

after lifetimes

of fruitless fight

to just give in.    

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

abstracts.

Faceless Composition, Lara Jade
Faceless Composition, Lara Jade

I.

 

Alone,

mourning pale yellow light

as velvet plum wine reflects

a vacuum sea of stars

struggling to penetrate

the city’s glare.

 

Without rational passion,

without positive prostitution,

without damaged ears to hear

or bloodshot eyes to read,

 

alone with my

reckless creation,

all around,

all stillness,

all movement

is without.

 

Hands compelled to

write with open honesty

are stunted by caution,

my remora

fattened upon the

volatile words

of a weary brain

as they drip

down through

to fingertips

in a parade

of ink beasts,

vowels and consonants

shaping a strained reality

determined to undermine

the foundation

of these precious

fleeting moments

where there’s still

life to live.

 

This thing on my mind

leaves me stranded

without option,

without power,

without a plausible solution,

giving birth

to coded abstracts,

disguising the truth and

feeding from within,

replacing the me

with the nothing.

 

II.

 

Were I to know unmitigated satisfaction,

I might die in its arms.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

 

Demolition.

Leonora Carrington
Leonora Carrington

 

How often

I wrote your name

in invisible ink

on blind paper

to a deaf audience

in an empty theater

while imagining my skin

with your skin,

my mouth

with your mouth,

my body

with your body

within the walls

of our modest home.

 

Grassy yard,

happy dog,

sweet child,

wily garden

each blooming with life,

 

our patch of passion

and contentment,

secluded seduction,

calming condition

where we share

wine and wishes,

philosophies and prayers,

secrets and dreams,

where we sleep deeply

in each other’s company –

 

and here we are.

 

Close enough to

feel your breath

and all I can smell

are hot lies

and bitter delusions

pouring from

that precious mouth.

 

Far enough to

see your disembodied

hands tearing down

our fragile house

while your mouth

claims to mend it.

 

Piece by crumbling piece

the foundation breaks away

in arid clumps

within your tightening grip,

turning to dust

in unorganized winds

blowing into my

eyes and mouth.

 

Blinded,

suffocating,

stumbling,

reaching out

for your shadow,

you turn

away and

do what’s best

for us all.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

for maya.

Maya Angelou

 

We all have pain.

 

Some more than others.

 

Some people feed

its scraps

to the hungry dogs.

 

Some people take

it to the bank,

stowing it away

in a dusty

safe deposit box,

fading to nothing

upon its key holder’s

fade to nothing.

 

Others fling it

in the face of the

world at large,

an unfortunate fate

for innocents

crossing the paths

of emotional maniacs.

 

Some people

own

their pain.

 

They take it

into their arms

and cradle it

like a newborn,

 

losing sleep

and time

just the same,

 

feeding it from

their well of

inner strength,

nurturing

until it

matures enough

to reason with.

 

Matures enough

to comprehend

how cruel the

world can be.

 

Matures enough to

make peace with.

 

Matures enough

to let go of

like a parent

waving goodbye

over a parade

of packed boxes

and painfully

joyful embraces.

 

Some people

fabricate their pain

knowingly and willingly,

masquerading as

the victim

in a cruel and

unfair world.

 

For others,

the world defines

cruel and unfair,

 

and some,

they let it break them.

 

Others wear the pain

like a pulsating

badge of

bloody honor,

feeding from its

richly caloric

bittersweet powerhouse,

owning it,

embracing it,

overcoming it but

never forgetting

the poisonous needles

prodding them

toward success.

 

We are brothers

and sisters,

mothers and fathers,

lovers and givers,

us all,

and the pain

doesn’t define us.

 

We define

the pain.

 

We define

the suffering.

 

We fuck up

and falter.

 

We squander

and abuse,

 

We withdraw

and explode,

 

We love and learn

while defining

our pain,

 

and it drives

us farther than

the finest

fossil fuel

 

when you

give it

the homage

it deserves.

 

 

images-13

“Cotton rows crisscross the world

  And dead-tired nights of yearning

Thunderbolts on leather strops

 And all my body burning

Sugar cane reach up to God

And every baby crying

Shame the blanket of my night

   And all my days are dying”

– The Memory, Maya Angelou

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

journey home

news-neptune01-tight_24622_600x450

 

Sitting here on this

brisk spring morning,

feet snuggly in fluffy boots,

sipping rich creamy coffee and

heavy sweater hugging tightly,

I’m as warm as I’ve ever been

 

while the grasshopper hosta,

pine cone lily,

hearty iris,

 

delicate succulent,

and dancing Japanese maple

uncoil their leaves

for the welcoming day

in a breezy

synchronized sway,

beckoning me back

to this daylight

from a Neptune night,

 

(sentinel on the

edge of light,

frozen azure orb of wind

and unforgiving darkness

makes an eternity

of spinning

six thousand miles per hour

through emptiness,

keeping me

just beyond reach

of return home

or permanent escape

into interstellar space,

forcing feeding

the easy answer to a

taunting question:

for every winter

there truly is a spring.)

 

Sometimes we survive by

remaining dormant

in frozen soil,

awaiting the

beckoning warmth

and tickling rays

of sunlight

to remind

our slumbering roots that

there’s more life to live,

 

(at least for now),

 

so come out and live it.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014