September 13, 2017

Three poems by Michael Griffith: "Chimera," "Twilight Cowboy," and "Embers"

Michael Griffith began writing poetry to help his mind and spirit become healthy as his body recovered from a life-changing injury. His works have recently appeared both online and in print in The Good Men Project, the Starving Poets Tour anthology book, Stanzic Stylings, Degenerate Literature, NY Literary Magazine, and Wild Words. He teaches and resides near Princeton, NJ.


Far from plain,
this mouse can roar,
but speaks best in whispers and sighs.

A fish next,
bright tail flickers;
swims deeper than you could follow.

A sparrow now,
wants falcon’s wings to soar.
Sees things clear with peregrine eyes.

A cat at last,
smiling, licks her whiskers,
waits for canaries to swallow.

Changes when she is all alone;
that way she won't need to atone.

Twilight Cowboy

His sad, hoarse opera remains
long after he leaves the stage.
He doesn't even know
what to cry about anymore.

but still he cries.

The plains his home,
his rope and rifle his two best friends,
history and change his two worst enemies.

He's running out of places to be,

but still he rides.

The things he could fight
are now long gone;
the things he could love are dying off, too.
The things he could keep no longer exist,

but still he tries.


We met when nuclear was our biggest fear.
Before AIDS, Ebola, Ebonics, Ebay -
We split like mitosis,
divided before these things came to be, too.
Live Aid was our Woodstock,
nouveau hippies, pseudo cools,
in love and loving jangly guitar music
in smoke-hazed weekends.

You traveled so far,
I stayed close to home but journeyed
as far as you could ever have gone
in my own way.

So apart, I wish we could return together,
form a temporary tissue, even an organ,
relive our past as a camera can,
if even just for some hours
to feel the haze once more -
smoke leading to fire to see ourselves
once more as we were,
not as we might have been,
but with some of what we've become.

© Michael Griffith

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