the mouse runs on the wheel going forward and getting nowhere

must do
must always do

be doing
or be dead

action
moves the world
no time for anything
other than the doing

the being
is busy

busy
being busy
with all the doing

rushing
to the end
gold watch
and a monthly check
then a trip to eternity

never wondering
until it’s too late
where all this busy business
really gets us

(D James)

just like the movies

every movie
ends the same

fade to black
roll credits

people file out
of the theater
thinking about
the experience

every life
ends the same

fade to black
roll credits

people file out
of the funeral home
thinking about
the experience

what matters
are the memories
of the life lived

(D James)

learning to ride a bicycle

a man lay in bed

last days
he knows

dying from the struggle
to live

the nurse
does what she can
to make it easier

through the morphine
induced fog
a moment of clarity

he says

“I never learned
to ride a bike”

too late now
she knows

too late now

(D James)

future unknown

where to begin
from here
or much earlier

how will it end
in some sudden unknown later

perhaps
by the hand of another

or drawn out
over time
by some mutated
cellular replication

the future is
impossible to know

what is known
what is certain

is that someday
it will end
or we will
at least as we appear now

what happens after
the form is gone

only the dead
know for sure

(D James)

this can’t be it, can it?

and this is not
my life,
is it?

worrying about goals
and hitting targets
making my numbers
for the month

this can’t be
why I’m here

this isn’t my life
being in debt
and fretting
over back taxes

my life
is about art
and culture
and friends
and family
and love
mostly love

my life
is for fun
and adventure
and taking big risks

my life
is to be used up
so that I don’t die
leaving behind
just debt and struggle
but something
of greater value
than that

something
much more lasting
or at least more fun

(D James)

urban scrawl

this thing strung together making no sense yet kept writing these words and not even thinking letting them flow and trying to keep up like in life when everything moves at the speed of sound and people keep moving and I seem to be in the way, slower than everyone else feeling tired and left behind it all seems a bit too much maybe I’m still on west coast time or it could be that I’m no longer interested in the rushing and running, the pushing and shoving, shouldering my way through life trying to get in front of the person in front of me assholes behind me kicking at the backs of my shoes, knocking them off skittering across the platform as the E train rushes out of the station and the next group of followers gathers in the station, and on to the next thing, the one after the one right before this one, how can anyone make sense of the world anymore when people start conversations in e-mail and end them in text, and no one, no one, answers the phone any longer, why can’t this rant end? because there are no endings and no beginnings, there’s just all this rushing around in the middle and when I go, and when you go, there will still be 6 billion and more on the planet to take up where we left off, and there is no reason for it, no meaning – it all is and it all isn’t and we’re here to sort out what it means to us now, and then we’re gone. And the sun will rise and the sun will set, and the sun will rise and the sun will set …

(D. James)

before it’s too late

let’s run away
she’d say

find
a place
where they
can’t find us

let’s run away
someplace warm
where the sun
always shines

find
that spot
where time
stands still

let’s run away
before we’re too old

let’s run away
before this life
kills us

let’s run away
let’s run away
let’s run away

at least until
the morning comes

(D. James)

after the end

the power of night
the black and white

lithe and still
darkness falls

bringing the final
moment

nowhere to go
from here
but to the end

fast and painless
eyes open
but the light gone
out

those years
gathered up
then scattered
by the wind

a billion specks
of light and sound
swallowed
by darkness

then nothing

not even
the black

(D. James)

over before you know it

where does it
go
the time

seems like it
used to crawl

now I lose
track
of the days

and memories
are like stories
someone once told

I’m not even
certain
I’ve not written

this poem
before

(D James)

dust

to dance
like the bones
don’t ache

to run
with the speed
of a panther

to laugh
with the abandon
of a child

to work
and play
and love
as if
I cannot fail

to sleep
like the dead
and dream
as the mystics do

this is how I wish
to spend
the days and nights
before returning to dust

(D. James)

no matter how much you try to kill it, my love won’t die … I’ll just take it with me as I say goodbye

pick up
and move
to a strange town

change my life
to want
whatever you want

find myself
by loosing
who I thought
I was

I could
love
like that

did
love
like that

still do

I’m just
no longer
waiting
for you

(D. James)

it all amounts to nothing in the end

when we were young
we talked, naively
about being older
because that’s
all we wanted

when we were older
we talked, longingly
about being young
because that’s
all we wanted

when we’re
dead
will we talk, knowingly
about being alive?

or will we finally
be content
with where we are?

(D. James)

can you have more answers than questions?

There is the road
and then there is
the trip we take
on it

There is the sky
and the bird
that flies

There is the water
and the whale

There is fire
and smoke

Those who live
and them
that die

Questions
and even
some answers

(D. James)