After 2 bottles

BEER  to  EMOTIONS  inside:

Numb it.
      Make it fly.

Look into the mirror —
      see the skull
            within thy flesh

Find out where lives the why —
      somewhere between the bones
      and the part of life
      that touches reality,
      that dances with the day

Why do we hate
      all our little struggles?
      be numb to annoyances —
      be alive to the life,
      to the blood, the fiber
            of the day

Suffering blends with joy
      to such a degree that
      they are one and the same
      as the silver lining
            of a cloud is
      one with our souls

The sky rains down on the earth
      and we soak ourselves up
            in an ancient cycle
            of lost and found

It’s all in the air —
      can’t you feel it?
      smell it? taste it?
            It is there —

You can’t run and hide
because it will always be there —
      in the very air we breathe
      in the layers of earth —
            the clay, the
            lava and fire
      and smoke of existence

The beer, the thought,
      the audible, palpable heartbeats
      uncover the layers
            of dirt, the dust of time,
            the everything that
      we’ve kicked up over our wounds
            throughout the years

Some things are like a shovel
      and help us
            dig it out;
      some things
      help us sweep it away
      to return to the winds
      without guarantee
            that it won’t
      return again some future day
            even tomorrow
            or in our dreams

And should we really be so selfish
      or stubborn or unrealistic
      that we wouldn’t expect it
      to resurface yet again — someday
      can’t we just feel happy
            and blessed
                  and free
      that it’s taken its leave
            for today?

Don’t be jealous
      of the birds
      with their wings
and the bodily structure
      to fly away —
an aerial view doesn’t
      necessarily mean
      that they have
            the capacity
to leave it all behind

The wings carry much
but the body carries more
and within our bodies
like an intricate puzzle
the mind fills up
with ever-heavy thoughts
and overflowing rivers —
thoughts & emotions
that spill quickly
      and restlessly
      into the heart:
and try to fly —
      just try it —
            I dare you —
with all that cargo

Perhaps it’s not
      the wings
      after all
that allow us to fly
but the breath —
the taking it in
the letting it go
the filling up
      with essentials
            of life
so there isn’t room
      for anything else
but the air, the breath —
and isn’t that everything?

We’re all running —
every single one of us
      is running —
            running from
            running towards
even those of us who
      think we’re content
      sitting perfectly still
are being carried along
      because no one
      or nothing
      really sits still
the tide would die
      had it nowhere to roll

—Terri Guillemets

100% unedited, written after my empty stomach made the acquaintance of two bottles Peroni Nastro Azzurro — a writing experiment to determine if my tipsy self made any more or less sense than its sober side — if you’re wondering, the results are inconclusive — I think we’re both a little crazy

In a COVID fever

If this is to be my end, what would I want to tell the world?

Sometimes, starting over is the best medicine.

Everything you care about can teach you something about yourself. Everything you hate can teach you even more.

Most things don’t really matter. And the things that do really matter, keep them as simple as possible.

Learning to let go is the most valuable life lesson.

What you see is gossamer compared to what actually exists.

The human brain may be the deepest, most amazing, underutilized miracle in the universe. And the most abused.

Fear is a poison to every part of our systems. So are worry and tension. And hatred.

If little things make you happy, you are very wise.

Walking is good for the whole body, but it works the gears of the brain the most.

All of life is poetry. Listen.

Night is a dark, magical place we can curl up and relax into.

Those whom we love are the meaning — the meaning of life itself.

Mingle your mind with other minds, your heart with other hearts.

It can all be over in the blink of an eye, so treasure every blink.

The music of your soul lives on.

My life thus far has been forty-eight years of nonstop trying.

Since the day I was born, I’ve been nothing but emotion. With frequent intervals of coldhearted reason.

Get drunk once in a while. It makes the world make more sense.

No matter how much human wisdom there is, the best teacher is always nature.

I love you.

—Terri Guillemets

Lost in thought

We’ve lost, we’re losing,
it’s so much loss, too much.

But the clouds are rolling
and the breeze is blowing
and nature is so beautiful
and the dried delicate leaves
are doing their dance of balance
between hanging on and falling away
amidst their wintry shiverings —

they love the wind
for helping them let go —

they fall to the ground
and the gentle rain comes
and helps them nourish the earth.

A gray bird lands on a bare gray branch
both unadorned, yet so, so beautiful.
And the leaves are drifting
and our lives are drifting
and loss is just another form of beauty.

—Terri Guillemets

Rejoice, lament, meander

black eyes and broken bones
rainbows and sugared donuts
overthinking and over-loving
have gotten me to this point
and still I’ve never yet made
a five-year freaking plan —
and even if I did — nothing
ever actually goes

—Terri Guillemets

Death lights heavy

Hummingbird mama —
abandons her nonviable eggs
but keeps checking back
a few more times, just to be sure.

Nested arms fall off a saguaro,
break open on the ground
like fragile eggshells —
after decades of desert still-life
a few seconds of death-motion.

But the night breeze is so beautiful
those breezes are — so beautiful,
it’s hard not to get swept away.

—Terri Guillemets