12 posts from Anima Poems

Anima I

When our cheeks touched
as we hugged goodbye
some of your scent rubbed off
& onto my skin.
Later, waiting for the bus
I could smell you
if I kept my right cheek to the wind.
It was sweet
& kept me from pacing.

Anima II

You stir in the dark
pressing just a little closer.
The deep breath of your sleep
slides softly across my skin
in rhythm.
My mind quiets
as I tune to you.
Sharing this subtle intimacy
summer heat retreats &,
basking in the cool breeze of your rest
I relax, slowly slip away
into my own rhythm
& my dreams.

Anima III

I court you w/ glance & ear
not the spread feathered shuffle
'round the fire
or the tight leap into sky.
I know a man who lives in wait
for the patience to outsit stones.
This is like that.
I will be glad of the day
when I can touch you
& know that my body
does not intrude on yours.
I will be glad when we find the way
our boundaries fit together.

I want to give you
a stand of virgin pine
the size of Northern Michigan,
rivers & the color of the oak in fall,
soft leather, sweet dreams &
a kiss on the lips.
I want to give you everything.
I will write you six perfect poems
bind them into a small book
& put them in your hands.
After all,
who can be so certain
that the tides do not move the moon
contrary to what we are told.

Anima IV

I never knew peace to knock so loud
on my door
before you came.

I got no secrets
but I’ll tell you this —
there are parts of me
no one’s ever seen.

You open doors in me
& even I am surprised
to find what lies inside.

Anima V

Lightning came into my room
three times last night.
Where the hell were you?

Anima VI

So go then.
Build a den or burrow
of yr pain & doubt & hurt.
Go there in yr sorrow
to lick yr wounds.
Be careful not to take enough
to last the whole long winter,
let hunger draw you back
to the open world.
I don't like to see you go
but how'm I gonna stop you?
where yr going now I cannot follow.
I'll give you this fine blanket
& a flint to start the fire
for now let feeling hibernate
while you heal, I'll wait
to see you emerge
sleek, strong & new
in spring.

Anima VII

There is a curious ecstasy
to passion held in restraint,
the sacrifice of will
for the pleasure or well-being
of another.
In selflessness there is a dissolution
allowing systematic rebirth. 
A knowledge stemming from the bones
in a code of touch.
Having shared these secrets &
confidences so thoroughly
it is inevitable that we be lovers someday.
I may be wrong
but I know the truth of it.

Under my skin
I know exactly what I want to do.
I keep this spell.

Anima VIII

It has been a rough nine months

since you put your arms about me from behind
in greeting, on a cold night.

We didn't know each other then,
not like now, the complete histories,
topologies & choreographies spun out of our lives.
That was later.

You cauterized my heart, unknowingly,
left a small spark smoldering,
to later flare.

Now, nine months from a simple gesture,
I have set free that weight, unconsummated.
Back in the cold night but warmed,
I have been allowed
to keep for myself what I would have given
had you accepted.

Anima IX

We have parted before,
always with a sense
of unspoken emotion.
Able to break certain barriers,
we were always left uncertain
of where the new borders lay.
But I know better than to think this final.
This region of waters has a way of calling
all her sons & daughters home.
Such knowledge is ineffective
as a balm to sooth this burn.

Anima X

I wanted more than this.
I thought you & I together could smash
the fictions & frictions plaguing others.
It took me nine months to realize
we don't want the same things.
Minor satori.  A sharp kick to my eyes.
A cutting out & dusting off of my heart.
Damn.  That was the illusion.
I saw both of us clear enough
but I read the future miserably.
Two days from now, one person leaves
& a whole town becomes,
effectively, empty.

John T. Unger poet

I'm best known as an artist and designer. Relaxing makes me tense, so I tend to put in a lot of hours on diverse projects.

Before becoming a visual artist, I spent 15 years as a poet. I studied poetry at Interlochen Arts Academy, Naropa, Stone Circle and on the streets. I performed my work for years at Stone Circle, solo shows, poetry readings, and at Lollapalooza in 1996.

I still write poems, but only if I can make them fit the constraints ofTwitter.

Mobile: 231.584.2710 (9 to 5 PST only) | Email me

Art IS my day job

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