February 1, 2017

Three Poems by Gary Glauber: "A Valentine Ponders the Powers of Love (A Double Abecedarian)," Icarus No More," and "Apogee"

Gary Glauber is a poet, fiction writer, teacher, and former music journalist. His works have received multiple Pushcart Prize and Best of the Net nominations. He champions the underdog to the melodic rhythms of obscure power pop. His collection, Small Consolations (Aldrich Press) is available through Amazon, as is a chapbook, Memory Marries Desire (Finishing Line Press). His next collection, Worth the Candle, is forthcoming from Five Oaks Press.

Art Submitted by Janine Pickett

A Valentine Ponders the Powers of Love (A Double Abecedarian)

As that special day approaches, some go gaudy, e.g., planning to wear a bright red fez,
beside others who plot deliveries of fragrant exotic blooms to invite amour or at least inspire envy.
Cards ,another possibility, seem at once sedate and commonplace, more of a reflex
diminished through repetition, an annual mundane pastel event meant to show
emotions through words and a romantic picture (Paris, Manhattan, Munich, even snowy Kiev),
fanciful if trite variations on the tired old theme of how best to express “I Love You,”
going full throttle to make this message stand out, to convey the unique diction of the heart,
huge phantasmagoric happiness, defying deft description, our “one love,” far beyond hugs and kisses,
iconic, ironic, at times symphonic, and yet oft contemplative, reflective and quietly stellar,
just the sort of magical whimsy that could settle centuries of political and religious strife in Iraq:
Kurds and Sunnis and Shiites gathering as one loving nation, where respect rules, joining up
lovingly. If only such a thing could really happen, but couldn’t our super-incredible ardor make it so?
Might the impossible suddenly present less of a problem in the face of our powerful and graceful union?
Not likely such an over-the-top approach would work in this world where love is no ultimatum,
only perhaps a goal mingled with lusty desire, an end to one’s dreams, a highly-sought after ideal,
paradise attained in moments and dreams, and more often dispelled over time, a fantasy lost in a bleak
quarter, a search/pilgrimage that’s part of one’s very being, a ritual equivalent to the Muslim’s hajj,
religious in the sense of faith and steadfast belief, yet there are those for whom love is sad alibi,
sentimental retardation, those pathetic relationship-challenged iconoclasts, eager to besmirch
the very principles of affection we others hold dear, the coldhearted and passionless – unloving,
unforgiving, almost unreal, considering this annual occasion – yet they exist apart and aloof,
versions of humans that lack love, know not of valentines, denizens of some sterile shameful universe
where passion knows no purchase, yet perhaps this event might prove world-changing watershed,
X-rated films suddenly vested with rich plot and sensation beyond the positions of the tantric…
Yes, a new force of true transformation fueled by human decency and compassion, not just glib
zealots, rather Mohawk warriors who’d break war chants to whisper to a special one,  " Konoronhkwa!”*

*(Konoronhkwa is the Mohawk phrase for “I Love You”)

Icarus No More

She is my ballast,
tethering me to this plane,
filling me with anchored trust
and reason new and bracing.

It was a circus act for years,
odd ventures to blind horizons,
floating upon some reluctant breeze,
chasing empty desires with eyes closed.

Lusting and determined, soaring
toward dreams melting to nightmares,
then descending fast, downhill,
wondering why I never learned
to use my inner wings.

Newly illumined,
she now shows me
the ways to remain grounded
and how to really fly.


Let this small world of ours keep spinning,
against the growing crowd of disbelievers,
despite mounting odds, circumstantial invention,
& desperate forces that feed on ego drama.
They tell us dreams don’t count, they fade & fracture,
but we know secrets to prove the contrary.
This delicate orbit holds in a sweet & fragile balance,
a gyroscopic vision of richly colored silks & textured velvets
that vibrates as the thrum of an underwater signal,
a pleasant convergence of heart & mind,
body & soul, music & language, truth & belief.
It is a house of cards that withstands the inner riot,
the angst of a million small disappointments, &
barriers imagined by those governing powers past.
We find faith in each other, in a shared trust,
an inner beauty that transcends cloudy skies
eager to drench others who fear the rain &
stand idly by as drops begin to fall.
Our journey continues on unabated,
protected by the strength of our love,
as we circle the sun together.

Gary Glauber

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