Tuesday, May 1, 2018




My music library is chock full
of melodic souvenirs left
by those whose lives
ended unfairly early.
I’m not talking your typical
rock star overdose,
nor run-of-the mill consequence
of hard partying years
taking their consequential toll.
While I’ve my fair share of those,
my list is more erudite:
the soulful young artist
who died from a rare strain
of testicular cancer mere months
after piecing together a debut album,
the gifted British singer-songwriter
cut down in her prime while vacationing
by a speedboat’s propellers –
wrong place, wrong time;
the prog-rock genius who died
from auto-erotic asphyxiation
just as his career was taking off,
the Tennessee guitarist whose
upbeat & optimistic songs
hid the facts of his life’s battles
with relentless depression,
ending in the silence of suicide.
The list goes on, nuanced,
brilliant, & underappreciated,
a heavenly roster of talents
who could fill a festival’s slots
for days on end,
a ghostly Woodstock
of those who shed this mortal coil
prematurely, but left tunes
I still listen to endlessly
in gracious appreciation
of how the art of music
outlasts the tenuous promise
of earthly survival.


All the funny men
are not so funny when
revealed to have been
sexual predators.

It forces me to reexamine
what I might have thought
was funny in the first place.
Is any of it still funny now?

The world is under fresh scrutiny
& even the song I like
with the catchy hook &
pleasant guitar riffs
dares me to sing along
with its somewhat objectionable
lyrics that objectify women.

That first time I saw the
drop of pond water
in between the thin glass
of the slide holding it in place,
I was amazed.

Teeming with hidden life,
the microscope revealed
strange things swimming
this way & that, squirming
with busy purpose
in a new world outside
my simple purview.

It was shocking then,
a fresh & complex universe
far outside my own.

Again, I now am forced
to look at everything
I thought I knew
as something
redefined as new,
a revolution of revelation,
a necessary perspective.


Brown dominates
landscape twixt seasons:
tree trunks & branches,
dead leaves from previous fall,
patches of dirt revealed
under last melting snow.
Soon such dominance fades
to subtle nuance, backdrop
to palette of lusher greens,
infinite in tone & variety
that soon bows again
to bright rainbow chain
of wildflower blossoms.
I too stand between seasons,
witness to the inevitable,
no stranger to time’s process,
yet amazed how each turn of the cycle
still manages to feel so new.


Take a bite, the serpent suggests,
as if world is mysterious apple.
& temptation is divulged
through aura of tense trepidation.

Solemn overly earnest universe
reveals sorrows, horrors, vulnerability
in vast powers both secret & fleet,
as we pretend rituals affect results.

Visions allay fears, cliffs collapse
in warning of misplayed tumble.
Shining world frays at shadowy edges,
as powerful winds carry us


onto next surprise & sacrifice.


The rubble of our desire,
a picture of desperation,
emotions as weeds climbing
through deep blue shadows,
failed articulations & dares
approaching indigo, frail sadness
slowly evaporating before
what once was rapt attention.
Now there is cold shine
of memory, polished, dried,
& placed on high shelf.
Teach us to grow lemons,
that we might burn yellow fields
after blush of harvest.
Desolate moonscape:
dust & ruts & stunted growth,
abandoned destination
of strangely blackened roots.
A world of not.
Here kissing lips never met,
hands waved in derision,
moving still air
in parabolic waves
of emptiness.
Strangers crash
like limbs needing to fall,
yet we stand still,
silent reminder of hearts
full of young potential,
ancient kindnesses
eroded to rot.


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 two collections, Small Consolations (Aldrich Press) and Worth the Candle (Five Oaks Press) and a chapbook Memory Marries Desire (Finishing Line Press) are available through Amazon. This past summer he read selections from his most recent collection at the 2017 NYC Poetry Festival.  He has work forthcoming soon in Ariel Chart, Cultural Weekly, and The Event Horizon.

1 comment :

  1. These are so good Glauber!!!! :) My favorite is Microscope!!!!