30 for 30 (sand castles)

She tilts her head back

As if to ready a violin

Her hands made into fists

Punching her face

Her mouth foams

Blood runs

From chewing on her tongue and jaw

I have timed

Tornadoes

Storms as they pass over

Shop lifters

But this was the longest

Minutes of my life

The seconds carry the weight of hours

After the seizure passes

Like the eye of the storm

It takes half an hour for the cloud mass to break

And clarity to return

I have to repeat answers to questions asked every few minutes

Like fragments

Falling to the earth

Left behind

And she slurs her speech

And I am reminded

How much we take for granted

This idea that everything will be here tomorrow

Exactly as it is today

And I think

How quickly all the lamps expire

And how much of ourselves we put on hold

Betting for tomorrow

How much I didn’t write

Believing I would be

Could be

Better

Tomorrow

Life

Tears us apart

And takes away our talents

The people we love

We are so bold

So brass

So full of our youth

We believe

We have time

But the lamps

Are expiring

As I hold my wife

And she is sleeping

I think about

The rain against the window

The dry lightning

As

The sun is setting

We are not permanent

We are not forever

I think about the orchestra

Playing in rhythm

I think about the shows we’ve seen

The musicals

The theater

I think about

How quickly we are gone

Even stars burn out

Even phoenixes are reborn

Even the air is thin

Between the lightning

Everything

Everything

Everything

Expires

Even when denied

Time will prove

Right

As the spring leaves

Are swept away

In the street

This is all we have

All we are

– Ethan Bethune

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Famous Last Words

There are some things we just won’t talk about,

It’s all in the last words

Of famous men

that’s what she would say

We are in the same room

But thousands of miles away

And what do we know

And how am I to know

The things you will never show

You’re always going away…

The papers say we won the war

But I feel as though

I lost her heart today

And all at once

I felt hollowed out

Just a lost soul

But I kept this mind

The things we’ll never know

The things you’ll never show

Can I blame you?

The blood stains the earth

The skies turn to overcast

And it’s all to shame

But one touch from her

Would end the pain

One word from her would

Send the rains

How could know?

I can’t read your mind?

We are worlds apart

I never thought I’d pack these bags

I never thought I’d be on this train

I never saw

The forecast for all the skies

There are some things

We just won’t talk about

And we spend our years

Thinking we are doing

Fine and we forget

We forget

How easy it is

To leave words unsaid

Worlds behind

with only our hearts

And

All our love

on the line

High stake Blues

A long while ago, but not that far …

Away in your home town

While you were sleeping

In the bar

Where the blind mice played their blues

And the old cane cat

Sat and drank his sorrow

Trading stories

With the one eyed fox

Who never got caught

Remember

We believed we was just misunderstood

How can we help thinking about the times

And how they’ve changed

What happened to the –

We would let our bills go by

Bowl until midnight

I would almost kiss you at 3am

And your batteries were dead

What did we know

About loss and sacrifice and pain

Look at us now

Standing in line

Hoping we make it to see our dreams

I think it’s going to be a lot quicker now

Than we ever did believe

All our dreams turn to sand

In the winds of time

And the world is smaller now

It fits in the palm of her hand

But she never leaves this town

Have you heard her sing tonight?

Her lips are red as wine

Her soul

As deep as the sky

And you’ll ask what the Lord did to let her down

When she breaks your heart just the same

She’s breaking out

The pillars are coming down…

Cooking and marriage

I don’t know if I should be disappointed or not in what I’m about to say,

But here goes one for the family …

if I knew I was going to die tomorrow ,

I don’t know that anything would change that drastically in my schedule…

That’s the big rewrite for us writers isn’t?

The white whale

How would we write about dying?

Maybe it’s because I used to spend so much time writing about it when I was younger

Maybe it was the depression

Maybe it was my youth

Or maybe it’s the fact that I have Crohn’s disease

And I’ve been hospitalized several times because of it…

But I like to think that now

I’m living in such a way

At such a place

That every day

I’m just happy to be here

I just want to throw a dinner party that Nora Ephron would be proud of…

I always return to her essays and books every other year.

I’m not for it, but I think it’s pretty safe to put people on pedestals once they’re dead.

She’s easily one of my very favorite people on earth and I never even met her.

I like coffee

I love my wife and my dogs

I like cooking

I like butter,

You can never have too much butter

Or olive oil

I like coffee in the morning

Hardwood floors

Cooking, did I already say that? Well, cooking is like really great sex.

I’ll cook for you before and after.

Reading a really great book

Broadway

Everyone should see broadway

It changes you

Or it should

Art is so important

It’s important that we do not sound like everyone else

That we don’t fall into an echo

I like a really great drink.

An old fashioned,

A brown derby

A Manhattan

I like Sunday’s

Sleeping in…

I know you’re not supposed to rely on movies for expectations of love

But I think I like this bar I go to, it helps me write,

But it’s also, because there’s this table that I sat at…

It was the first “date” if you will,

Me and my wife went on…

I always think about seeing her walk in

And I knew I wanted to watch her enter rooms for the rest of my life…

I know I can be hard edged

Sarcastic and a little bit cruel

But she’s like dark energy

She’s seductive without even trying

And she is sexy as hell in heels

she’s also every Sunday morning

Every breakfast in bed

The perfect hot coffee

And a walk in the park

She’s the Italian restaurant on the corner

She’s midnight in the rain

She’s sitting there beside me

When they have to put a tube down my throat

Because of a flare up

She’s there on the front

Smiling

When I get published

She’s got all the love

I can ever hold in these hands

I’ve seen people come and go

And she wants me

And I want her

Year after year

I know what I like

I know what I want

And I

Like her

I love her

I want her.

Tones

I can feel myself

In the background

Of this empty room

I guess

I am not myself

You can try to fight

With everything you have

The truth is

Everything you overcame

Can come right back

I am trying

I keep telling myself

The words you thought you kept to yourself…

All of these miles and miles

You put behind you

I keep talking in my sleep

Didn’t they tell you?

It won’t let go…

Did you ever wonder…

The colors in the wasteland

The truth is something I keep looking for every day

Why the world is on fire…

It won’t let go

It won’t let go

All the voices from the past

They keep calling me home

I guess I always thought

We would have more time

All of the photographs of you

I keep seeing you in every color of fall

The truth is

I am not myself these days

I hide it in the well

But in the nights

Alone in my sleep

I keep the words

You hid for yourself

And I

I see you in everything

I know

We all have one chance

And that’s why I know

It won’t let go

And I won’t let go

Call me

Anytime you feel the miles

You know

It won’t let go

And I won’t let you go…

The truth is

Everything reminds me of you

And I wake up

Reading

Memories of you tucked between the pages

Of everything I write

And

The nights are long

The miles are wide

but I’m all in the right

You and me

We won’t let go

Paper Fences

And this is just where I came in

Our cities burning

Broken words

Defined by the way we were

Filling the skies

But right now we are

Paper white picket fences

uptown state

Just dreams held on to

so far out

off sight

Tucked away

We both know

The lies we tell

The day we make

The pain we take

The bad bill we have to pay

Put off till another day

What kind of life is –

What kind of lie is –

What kind of love

Is this?

Would you stay with me,

If I told you the truth

Would you be a little bit closer

Oh I would be here for you

I would that I could

Get close to you

And

She says

She knows

You carry yourself

She says

She knows

He says

He pays the price

They both get theirs

Out of site

Out of mind

And she says

How can you choose what stays and what we give away?

The revelation

For any paradise …utopia

There must be a final solution

For all of us misfits

Outcast

Cut-off

Paper white picket fences

Caught in the wind and rain

She hears the drums

Drumming out

She plays her soul out loud

In the daylight

Too late for repeal

Too fast for dreaming

It’s time for freedom

It’s time for soul

It’s time to shake it out

She’s cast her chains to the ground

Oh sunrise

The tide is coming in

Oh life

The earth is breathing now

I would

That I could

Get close to you…

The Times (Bleeding Ink 1,245)

They say

The times are changing…

Underneath this sky,

Sometimes I feel older than time

Storm clouds have always been in the background, here,

The train still stalls

Still takes its time

The clouds hang in the sky

But when does the wind ever rise?

Who poured my coffee,

Who slept by the sea,

Who is this face in the mirror staring back at me?

When will my past stop haunting,

This nameless shadow

Moving the furniture

In empty rooms

Occupying corners of my mind…

Who were we back then,

And when did we finish becoming?

Does it ever let go…

Do you still love me,

Is regret on your mind?

Pour the drinks

Set the mood in your eyes

When did we get so busy

When did we stop pursuing each other …

Every day it’s a new News story

New America

New sunrise

Why can’t we change as well…

Does it ever let go…

This feeling

We all want to rhyme

We all want to write

But we never make the time…

Maybe …

These people believe

And believe

To believe

Love to believe

And

Maybe I don’t really want to know …

I’m not holding the answer

I’m just staring at your window

Your picture’s on my phone

Listen,

She’s

Like the first snow

And

My heart slows

I forget to breathe

Every time I see

Her

And maybe we –

Will always be suspended in this time-

Everyone is in the crush – rush- but –

She takes me back

Everything in the room fades

Back to when

Nobody wants to be famous

We all keep the time

The internet is just another black hole

In the back of someone’s mind

And the names we know

They all paid their dues

You know, they broke through…

They worked overtime…

Here we are

Is anything the same?

We cut ties

We buried bodies

We moved in and moved on

We want a stage for whatever we feel…

I had a nightmare

All I could do was plagiarize

I woke up

Slow it down

She slows it down…

Tomorrow is waiting for you

Who dug a hole in the earth

For you to fill with your tired mind

Soon the stars

Will be in the quilted sky

The moon is still constant

The tides will rise

Washing your soul clean

And carry your dreams back home

I love to love her…

I think I will be trying to win her

For all of my tomorrows

They say

The times are changing

But like Dylan said …

I was older then, I’m younger than that now…