Prolific Prose

simple stories & descriptive prose, subtle gestures, random stuff I'm diggin'.

Nostalgia for Autumn, Summer, and Their Respective Sports.

Piano keys remind me of rain falling. They are the sound of a million tiny dancers on the glass of my heart.

The sun is setting over Virginia Park making silhouettes of the old brick flats and cookie cut CDC homes that look less uniform in line with their aging grand counterparts. Monday is blooming to a close and Detroit loves itself tonight.

Her fickle heart put away for one night for who could refuse to express the softest emotions under the royalty of gold and sapphire and the first glint of Fall.

The only day of the week people won’t rush home and out of the city after work.

The Lions play tonight, opening what is believed by some to be the last hopeful season since 1957.

The Boys of Summer slug out a cool one against the Royals after some tough losses of their own in a series against Giants.

No one seems to care, really. These are merely excuses for men, some often stunted into stoicism by the arduousness of life, to show emotion. Tonight they are allowed to love and laugh and cry. Tonight a man can pick up his son and stare him in his eyes and love him. Love the way his locks are growing in just like his. Love the way he tries to use a stick as a back scratcher. Even love the way he recognizes his own smile when he calls the boy over to help scratch that spot that’s always just out of reach.

Tonight men are allowed things so simple because they know the work they do well but not the work it takes to grow your heart.

And it is night like these that make loyal life time fans of small boys who hold these quiet simplicities in their chest and save up the strength bequeathed to them, until some day they repeat these moments with their sons. Only then will they realize what the tear in their father’s eye meant so many years ago.

 

Until the day I look to find your hand in mine.

I’ve heard of you by name from a thousand voices

By soul from a thousand different hearts.

I’ve known you from long before,

And forgotten,

And remembered again.

You are soft words breaking like water over stone in the dimness of night.

You are a constant in beauty and depth and strength

I will keep pace by the ebb and flow inside your chest until the knowing

Of mind, soul, and heart grow

Into a familiar touch

A long remembered caress

A history of warmth

An infinity that I called by an unspeakable name

In my heart.

A name that we both knew better as the moment

You hand was in mine.

We are falling into ourselves.

We are lost.
We cannot find home
Because we have searched across an entire world
Only to fail to realize that home
Has always been inside ourselves
That we have carried it inside ours hearts
Everywhere we have gone
We are falling into ourselves
And this is the only way we can find
Home.

Your father is the life in all that you see.

image

There are multitudes of fatherless. They cry silent qualms inside their chest. No one’s told them they can be brave. That they have strength in their heart. No one’s told them, “you have a part of me.” No one’s left here who calls them daughter, who calls them son.

Take me home to the stillness inside your chest.

I would hear the rest of your stories. As long as it took till I knew who you were.
As close as I could get to the person you recognize inside your head.
What magic does it take to strike the balance between being one
And keeping our identity. Who are we when I am me?
When I hear the creak of your favorite chair and it fills me
With a warmth deep inside my chest this is how I know I’ve come home.
What stillness could you speak from this place?
What names have you heard that you’ve already forgot?
What gift would you place in my hands that would render me speechless
And cascade a dozen tears from these dry eyes, eyes that seldom see
The washing force of tears to be shed from their threshold?
What names would we have for one another here, names that at once
Are both history and present, legend and future?
For these things I would give you
The Peace of my heart
The Strength of my hands
The Shield off my back.
I would call you by silent secret names that words could not speak,
That tongues could not produce,
That ears could not hold. And I would remember you with my heart
And touch you with my soul. You would be as a quiet afternoon,
The golden washed parts that seem to draw out the length of your life,
That seem to pull you close and hold you in some bond of peace.
I would remember you most here as a time of day when when everything is alive
With the chatter of life, of how your story had played out this day and I would keep it
As a treasure in the most kept away place inside me. I would store it up
For the famine to come that we may survive the coming onslaught of winter and it’s desolation.
I would call you by the slow stirring inside my heart
That beats in steady beats at the sound of your name.
I would know at last what it is to call someone home and I would know
The smile that creeps across your face when you think of such a place.
Take me home, to the stillness inside your chest.

You saw this and called it beautiful

Well the stillness in you

Store it up for the famine

Ration it for the feast.

There is strength in your quiet

There is power in your peace.

Find it

Give it a name.

Learn the sound of it.

Recognize its infinite emptiness

Count the lives you’ve lived in it

And rest.

Live in the space between reverberations

In the still between piano strings

Find your name there

In the center of yourself

In the cavity called home.

The Woodbridge Stories Pt 2- Lost & Found: Jefferson Avenue

It was 6:30 when they finally left, the sun had not yet begun to color the morning sky. No greens glowed on the horizon and no stirring behind any windows had yet to show signs of life. She drove passed the lake, now nothing but a void in the dark. A memory only of washing waters in a clean blue expanse. They were heading home after the party, her oldest friend was leaving to study abroad, the loss had just begun to grip her. It tasted of some bitter-sweetness that she should leave now, she wondered if they would see each other again. She drove along the shores of the lake, here in the night she felt the pull of its dark weight next her. A gravity, pulling at her, tugging the wheel. It worked slowly through her, this great weight, until it passed through her chest and grew as a welling in her throat. She began to sob silently as scenes from that night and a million other nights played over the surface of the deep. The loneliness caught her by surprise the way it does when the loss of someone hits you finally, hits you in your chest. Her shoulders began shaking heavily, her crying without sound. She would miss her friend, a sister when she had none and that place a second home. A place of deep treasure that had been for years stored up in the small nooks of the cupboards and cracks between books. Nearly overwhelmed, she stopped the car. Stepping out into the cold, she stared into the immense dark. She believed in waves that the water extended far out before her just as she believed, through some blind faith, that she would see her friend again.

She drank in the cold as it came rushing up the shore until the sound of breathing static in her head subsided and she could hear the water lapping just feet in front of her. He walked up beside her. There, standing shoulder to shoulder she remembered he had been with her, himself almost a stranger in a room of strangers. She reached with her finger tips for his hand. He gripped back tightly as if to pull her back from the edge of the dark and the edges of her thoughts She opened her mouth to speak.

“I’ll stay with you,” he said, before she could form words.

She looked back at him, just able to make out his eyes in the birthing dawn, “Thank you.”

The warmth of the car kissed at their cheeks as they pulled away noticing the song that had been playing before.

Come back to me now and sound like a band of wolves.

Come back to fill the holes in this sinking ship.

She left a part of herself there that night so that any time she would drive by it a place inside her would hurt with a deep sadness, a longing she both loved and feared. She did not expect, however, that another feeling would follow, slower and softer than the first. The warmth of his hand around hers, the sound of his voice both quiet and strong, clear over the waves, reassuring her. She would carry this memory with her so that it would warm her on the coldest and loneliest of nights, filling the holes in her chest the hollowed her out. She would come to believe that the great pain, the loss of her closest friend, was birthing something new and deep and warm.
He would remember the weight of her hand so heavy and full and yet so much lighter than his, lighter than his worries, like a small stone warm and smooth in his hand.

The dawn came that morning first slow and green until it finally burst forth almost violent in its red expanse. It would likely storm that day.

Part 1: The Woodbridge Stories

He was walking down Warren, several pounds of stress weighing his shoulders down so that they hunched just slightly. He kept a slow pace and listened to the rhythm of his shoes as they hit the pavement. The creaking of the leather resembled to him a weeping as if by this requiem they could mourn all things. The same gray dawn had lingered well into the afternoon so there seemed no difference in the passage of time. Only now at dusk did the westward sky break just enough for the blushing hues of orange and pink to scatter on the horizon as if the sky were blushing, embarrassed it had missed the day. He would usually head left down Trumbull and head home, his voice hoarse after a long day of teaching. Today, however, he turned right; the thought of his dimly lit cramped apartment made to seem even darker and smaller on account of the gloom caused him to feel anxious.

He headed instead for the Woodbridge where he hoped to sit anonymously for a few hours and stare into the dark liquid of his favorite stout and watch the reflection that stared back at him from the surface. He passed the three window panes and reached for the door, stepping in and retracing the familiar distance to the corner table just in front of the first window. He watched the light reflecting off the buildings on campus begin to fade as the sun began to set. The play of color receding to a uniform blue and green night at the base of the skyline. The waitress came over and took his order, he noticed the ink sleeve that disappeared under her uniform with no clear theme and a couple of pieces that she probably regretted. All the same he was entertained by them and by her attitude as if it made no difference to her that he was here or not yet still maintaining an heir of amusement.

A few hours had passed and it was nearly dark outside, the street lights would soon flicker on in their soft yellows changing the landscape from the dusk colors that tended toward black adding their vintage tint to the evening. He decided he would have a smoke and then probably leave. He left the cash for the tip and the tab under his glass and moved towards the door. He did not know that walking along the sidewalk on the adjacent side someone was walking up and, just as he reached to grab at the handle, the door gave way causing him to almost stumble out. He saw her standing there, shocked at his sudden appearance. She had not seen him approaching the door from the inside. She was standing looking surprised at the violence with which he had just exited the pub. She laughed slightly and smiled. He gathered himself nodded to her politely for getting the door pulled out his lighter as he sat on the bench outside. She walked in passed him nodding in return.

He was most of the way through his second cigarette when someone came out and sat on the bench with him. They too pulling out a cigarette of their own. He instinctively reached his hand out, lighter lit. Reaching her mouth near to the flame he noticed it was the same woman he had burst upon so suddenly making his exit from the building, he was embarrassed. The sky had now reached full blush, arriving now finally the semblances of day coming in with the night.

“Thanks,” she finally said after a couple of pulls of tobacco.

“Don’t mention it,” he braced a smile growing across his face.

“That was quite an exit.”

He was ready for this, there was no way she would have let that escape. He knew because he would not have let it escape and the offering of the lighter was like an invitation to her to bring it up now, here, sitting under the sky, it too having stumbled out into a close of bright red and orange autumnal tapestry.

Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Die, Those Who Tell The Truth Shall Live Forever

Is it true?

Is it true the dark is winning

Is it true you’re waiting there for me, in the lone cold of the settling twilight

Is it true you love me?

Is it true you even know my name?

Tell me again please!

I need to hear from you because it feels like falling

Like I’m passing through the ice of night

Is it true there’s great evil?

Is it true it’s killing us, robbing us of warmth and hope?

Is it true I can call you Father when I’ve never known one?

Is it true I’ll die?

Is it true I’ll live forever?

Is it true I’ll pass through this night too?

Draft 1: The Woodbridge Stories

He was walking down Warren, several pounds of stress weighing his shoulders down so that they hunched just slightly. He kept a slow pace and listened to the rhythm of his shoes as they hit the pavement. The creaking of the leather resembled to him a weeping as if by this requiem they could mourn all things. The same gray dawn had lingered well into the afternoon so there seemed no difference in the passage of time. Only now at dusk did the westward sky break just enough for the blushing hues of orange and pink to scatter on the horizon as if the sky were blushing, embarrassed it had missed the day. He would usually head left down Trumbell and head home, his voice hoarse after a long day of teaching. Today, however, he turned right; the thought of his dimly lit cramped apartment made to seem even darker and smaller on account of the gloom made him anxious.

He headed instead for the Woodbridge where he hoped to sit anonymously for a few hours and stare into the dark liquid of his favorite stout and watch the reflection that stared back at him from the surface of the liquid. He passed the three window panes and reached for the door, stepping in and retracing the familiar distance to the corner table just in front of the first window. He watched the light reflecting off the buildings on campus begin to fade as the sun began to set. The play of color receding to a uniform blue and green night at the base of the skyline. The waitress came over and took his order, he noticed the ink sleeve that disappeared under her uniform with no clear theme and a couple of pieces that she probably regretted. All the same he was entertained by them and by her attitude as if it made no difference to her that he was here but was amused none-the-less.

A few hours had passed and it was nearly dark outside, the street lights would soon flicker on in their soft yellows changing the landscape from the dusk colors that tended toward black adding their own tint to the evening. He decided he would have a smoke and then probably leave. He left the cash for the tip and the tab under his glass and moved towards the door. As he reached to grab at the handle the door gave way causing him to almost stumble out. He noticed a young woman had opened the door and was standing looking surprised at the violence with which he had just exited the pub. She laughed slightly and smiled. He gathered himself nodded to her pulled out his lighter as he sat on the bench outside.

He was most of the way through his second cigarette when someone came out and sat on the bench with him. They too pulling out a cigarette of their own. He instinctively reached his hand out, lighter lit. Reaching her mouth near to the flame he noticed it was the same woman he had just burst upon so suddenly making his exit from the building, he was embarrassed. The sky had now reached full blush, a vibrant red, still sorry to have taken so long, arriving now finally with the night.

“Thanks,” she finally said after a couple of pulls of tobacco.

“Don’t mention it,” he braced.

“That was quite an exit.”

He was ready for this, there was no way she would have let that escape. He knew because he would not have let it escape and the offering of the lighter was like an invitation to her to bring it up now, here, sitting under the sky, it too having stumbled out into a close of bright red and orange autumnal tapestry.

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