what the birds know.

 

There is no greater purpose than

this right here,

this right now,

 

existing within a pocket

of warm air and birdsong,

so many little voices

singing their praises of life.

 

This moment when

the sun’s rosy kisses

make the horizon blush

contains within it

the answers that

men die for —

that men kill for.

 

If only we would

silence the madness

for a brief moment

and listen with our hearts

to the meaning of bird’s songs,

 

perhaps we might sense the

humbling magnitude

of life itself —

the gift that is every sunrise,

the gift that is every spring,

the gift that is this opportunity

to exist within such boundless beauty.

 

If only for a moment

we would choose

to set aside

our convictions,

our trauma,

our tragedy,

 

we might begin feeling

what inspires birds to sing,

 

we might comprehend

life without condition,

 

we might truly know

what it is to love.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2017

 

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existential arctic.

frozen heart, By Sephirothsdx
frozen heart, by Sephirothsdx

 

As days
grow longer
soft hearts
grow colder,

weary of
winter games
forced upon the
fair weather souls

proclaiming
arctic tolerance

for pleasing
the audience

while shivering alone
within the silence.

Minds yearn
for the order of
sprouting thoughts
while hearts

burn to comfort
the dying parts, as
both birth and death
are alive with spirit.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2015

carefully chosen notes.

Surreal Birds, by Alexandria Baker
Surreal Birds, by Alexandria Baker

 

As day rolls into night

and night into day,

the shaman sparrow

sings his lilting song

of secret, sacred notes

performed for a

slumbering Spring.

 

Slicing through the

bitter silence of

frozen twilight skies,

each note is a

brilliant reminder

of what once was

and again will be,

 

inspiring a breathy answer

for the beating hearts

of everyone awake to hear:

 

“Soon, sweet sparrow. Soon.”

 

Would the sparrow travel

to warmer skies

if he knew how closely

they existed?

 

Just through the fabric

of here and now,

a short trip to

Somewhere Spring,

 

does the sparrow

seek this eternal paradise

of chartreuse rebirth,

 

or does he patiently sing

his hopeful song

to icicles decorating

barren trees,

 

appreciating each

arctic moment

for its glittering beauty,

 

mindfully aware

of rewards revealed

to those who wait?

 

As the sun rises

in numbing cold,

so does it set

in humid haze,

blanketing each realm

and all in between

with a conscious reminder

that love is patience.

 

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Right Reserved

Copyright 2015

cosmic run on.

Cosmic Love, by Phillip Schumacher
Cosmic Love, by Phillip Schumacher

 

Inner and outer
manifestations (of
rage and tender touch,

of ego pulled
over the head
inside-out,
of space and the
absence of matter,
of ions forgetting charges
and mass not knowing
its how and why,

leaving cracks in
the surface of
what once was,
what is,
what could be,
what could have been
before cosmic collision
exiled its possibilities
into the netherworld
of parallel options,)

become the
stuff of dreams.

The fabric of poetry.
The liquid sunrise
calling us back
to a life we
don’t understand
while painting
its ambiguous canvas
with the language
of purpose.

 

Inspired by “If A Sunsets Behind Buildings and No One Can See It, Is it Still Beautiful?” By Vagabond at https://writtenmad.wordpress.com

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2015

when the walls collapse

Andromeda_Collides_Milky_Way

 

Maybe I was there.

Maybe you were there.

Maybe you and I

looked up at the stars

as the eyes

of infinite gods,

or the infinite eyes

of one god –

and we imagined

the possibilities.

 

Maybe we stood

at the feet of

rhythmic waves

as their rumbling

voices hinted

of secrets beneath

the arc of deep blue,

and we imagined

the possibilities.

 

Maybe there was

a time between lives,

before and after

everything was named,

when we witnessed

the ground beneath

our feet

and skies above

our eyes

without condition.

 

This meaning

without name,

value

without cost,

reverence

without judgement

is lost

when human eyes

are closed

and the blind

pursuit begins.

 

As if life’s beauty

itself isn’t enough

to satisfy

the reason

for being,

we shamefully define

that which

defies definition,

 

breeding foolish pride

with each steadfast

proclamation,

widening the rift

between man and nature.

 

Greed and power

construct the

revolving doors

of perceived reality,

keeping our

eyes on what

everyone else has

and our minds on

how badly we

want it,

 

but the universe

with its endless eyes

doesn’t blink

a single one

when we’ve

earned or

lost a million.

 

Our tiny order

doesn’t mean

a thing

when galaxies

collide.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Right Reserved

Copyright 2014

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

on avian matters.

Each morning

neighborhood crows

fly toward

a gently

rising sun,

 

hundreds landing

softly on the

highest hilltop

as our golden orb

slides into

watercolor skies.

 

Chattering of

breaking avian

news beneath

trees undressing,

they welcome together

daylight in

funeral attire and

with shrill songs,

doing a thing

that the human

in me can’t

help but join

in doing –

 

we marvel

in the sunrise

together.

 

Never minding

my presence

or admiration,

never minding

their bad reputation

for doing

dirty jobs,

never minding

their tenuous

flightpath

between

death and life,

 

they do their

crow thing

each day

and fly each

evening back

toward the sun

as it slips

into a fiery

goodnight.

 

Inhabiting the boundary

between heightened

existence and

ambivalence,

they’ve little

concern for where

November winds

blow decaying things

during the cold night,

 

rather they

sleep soundly

amongst the dead

before gathering

for tomorrow’s sun,

rising once again

upon a world alive

with morbid

avian purpose.

 

 

 

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

The Laughter.

Ricke Rahmond, 1979-2013
Ricke Rahmond, 1979-2013

I.

 

When he asked

if I liked it,

the bright

yellow paint

splattered

with purple

where the

crumbling ceiling

met the

cracking wall,

time stopped

for long enough

to watch our

precious moments

together replay

in my mind.

 

I always loved

whatever his

spidery fingers

produced:

the art, the music,

the fluidity

in dance,

the long

firm hug,

the trustworthy

hand held

through a crowd

thick with

pulsating youths.

 

Unlike everything else,

I didn’t like it,

this Pollock-y

matte paint.

I didn’t like

how the purple

attacked the yellow,

sunshine struggling

through bruises,

surfacing in

painful patches,

fighting for breath

as purple spread,

smothering yellow

before my eyes:

a rash,

an infection,

an aggressive disease.

 

II.

Three months later

I trembled

in a doctor’s

conference room,

cold white and

stainless steel,

surrounded by

his best friends,

mother, and aunt.

Ricke knew

what the doctor

would say.

We all did.

Our heartbeats

were audible

as the file opened

and words

spoke aloud.

He told me

in the yellow

and purple.

He knew

and I knew

that he was

a frightful

kind of sick

and life

was on a

countdown.

III.

Eleven years

and three

lifetimes ago

we sat on a

Southside curb,

watching traffic pass

in silence.

Eleven was always

his number,

but that

wasn’t his year.

Twelve months in

and HIV

consumed

the yellow

I once knew,

tearing him

apart and

pushing

everything

away.

IV.

I miss

his laughter

the most,

the way his

expressive face

exploded into

violent fits of

contagious hysteria.

I’ve never laughed

as much as

I did with him,

my Ricke,

my best friend,

my soul-brother.

Somewhere near

his laughter floats

atop gentle winds,

swirling through

creeping tendrils

of pumpkin vine

and mighty arms

of sunflower,

and he’s happier

than he ever

was in life.

He is everything

he could never be:

he is free …

Free from

the burdens

of damaged body

and mind,

free from time

and pain,

from longing

and endless

heartache,

free to laugh

and be the joy

he always was,

trapped within

the suffering.

He’s free

to embrace

the living with

his loving laughter,

our Ricke,

riding upon his

comforting winds.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014

 

Ricke and Renee, Renee and Ricke, 2003
Ricke and Renee, Renee and Ricke, 2003

the nervous courage.

The Apology, by Mark Ryden
The Apology, by Mark Ryden

 

Putting off

the dusting

the watering

the weeding

the nothing

I sit to write with

hesitant hands

and a stabbing

yearning

for that from

which I hide.

 

Afraid to face

myself in silence

when the world is still

and truth is bold

I create,

cherish,

and squander

in the privacy

of loneliness,

words open sores

bleeding and

oozing the everything

I labor at concealing.

 

This private legacy,

selfish secret,

dark horse

breathing down

my neck

whispers hot

words of courage

and purpose

and meaning

bigger than fear,

 

so there it is

and here I am,

unprepared

but entirely assured

that it’s time

for the naked silence

of speaking

words aloud.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014