the fabric.

 

Blame it on the neural pathways,

(blame it on our tumultuous youths,)

blame it on the dysfunction

making us do it —

seeking out wayward souls,

(the lost amongst the loners,

the outcasts hiding

behind smiling faces,)

 

assuming a host

of burdens willingly

because love

makes us do it.

 

(Perhaps we’ve

no option but to

save the loneliest souls

from drowning

before drowning

ourselves,

 

becoming clarity

within the chaos

only because it’s a chaos

belonging to another.)

 

However abstract,

however dangerous,

however powerful,

chaos is alive

within us all —

 

it’s the weird spirit

of the powerless, the homesick,

the longing, the loving,

the haunted mirrors

of our souls.

 

Painful chaos

drives us to survive,

 

daring the fabric

of reality to push beyond

its boundaries and grow,

 

making the symmetry of beauty

inarguably beautiful,

 

keeping us on our toes,

(whether they be

running or dancing,)

 

keeping life

acutely alive

despite the

frigid grip of

organized complacency.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2017

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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 plentitude of tomorrow.

Photograph by Jerry Uelsmann
Photograph by Jerry Uelsmann

 

Through a forest

and over mountains,

 

across desert canyons

and beyond the curve

of cerulean horizon,

 

lives a home –

a secluded grove

nestled between the

pages of reality,

alive with

secretive dreams

and abandoned things –

 

lives a pocket landscape

of infinite potential

and branches open wide

to the sun/moon/stars,

to their rhythm of life

and song of death.

 

Here, there is room

for us both and

room for us all.

 

Every version of you,

every version of me,

every before and after,

 

every seasonal shift and

metaphysical connection

lives through the forest

and over the hills,

 

across an ocean

and beyond a desert.

 

There live goats

standing on stumps

eating humorous things.

There lives a garden growing.

There live the cheeses aging.

There live the bees buzzing.

 

There lives the

stillness of sunrise,

high noon’s majesty,

a sleepy afternoon,

the mournful sunset’s

spiritual wonder,

and the solitude of

a midnight room.

 

There lives the mirror lake,

still as glass and

quiet as time,

reflecting the best

ideas whispered through

an emerald forest

reflecting on its

matters of loss

and love.

 

There live the winding walks

on enchanted paths of

soft decaying pine,

fragrant as Christmas memory.

 

There lives the poetry unborn,

the words unfulfilled

and desires unnamed.

 

There lives breath without lungs,

gasp without voice,

shock without fear.

 

There live the muted moments

hidden between

rolling mountains

and peace of mind,

promising that

although today

is nearly over,

tomorrow is

practically forever.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2015

winter isn’t the enemy.

Frozen Brain, by Iivio Ansaldi
Frozen Brain, by Iivio Ansaldi

 

Forced to the warmth

found between folds
of halfhearted
dreams suspended
beneath animated skies

frozen in unwelcome moments

of silent disposition –

the winter is surely to blame.

It must be the cold
misguiding our
mammalian hearts.

It must be

the antiquated threat
of starvation,
the genetic predisposition
for acquiring adipose,
the indiscriminate urge
for securing shelter

that a lengthy
winter brings
causing ants
in the pants
of logical motivation.

No amount of
artificial ultraviolet
can cure the
frostbitten psyche
of an incessant Everest.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2015

a designer flock.

Woods at Night 1 by Chris Friel
Woods at Night 1 by Chris Friel

 

Sheep blindly pursuing

the vacant salvation of

wealth and conformity

 

who sacrifice intuition

for the sake of

synthetic dreams

 

don’t make it far

in the darkness

of natural night

 

with nothing more

than polymer dogs

for protection.

 

 

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

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

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

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

the blindness of busy.

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It’s walking

down a road

stunned by

the beauty

only to realize

you’ve driven it

hundreds of times.

 

We miss so much

when we hurry.

 

It’s the golden finch,

the baby mantis,

the fuchsia wildflowers

nestled amongst

thorny weeds,

delicate,

gorgeous,

and hidden from

hurried faces.

 

Rushing past

the loves of our lives

to make the bus,

catch the light,

get to work,

blindly chasing

the empty dream,

finishing gold-plated

in this heated race

toward death,

 

rushing past the love of your life,

 

past walks and drinks,

past hands held shyly,

past nervous lips

meeting beneath

flickering street lamps,

past quiet conversations

draped in dawn’s

blue light,

 

rushing past

what songs

and poems

 

and lives

are made of.

 

Rushing past inspiration,

we are driven by the

constant fear

of slowing down

for long enough

to look it all

in the eyes

and see the truth

that proves

this madness

wrong.

 

 

Renee Novosel

All Rights Reserved

Copyright 2014