Sunday, February 22, 2009

Jigsaw Poem Four, Feb. 2009

(for Layne Staley)

we toast your life
ended with a broken syringe
yet giving us unbroken words
spiraling around like
your kaleidoscope eyes
looking for your dad
swirling around like
fragmented, lost colors
in shadow
like those lost colors, these
shattered prismatic lights
living in the abyss
inside your seven-year old mind

because one day, you figured out that Daddy wasn't coming home again

and you hoped that fame
would call him back
bring him home
erase the shadows
negate the abyss in your mind
where your nightmares lived
these nightmares that declared that every lost fragmented spectrum
was a wicked lie
meant to make you hope again
when hope
is the stuff of angels and fairies
and dreams
are the stuff of everlasting torment
meant to remind you of never-lasting promises like
"I'll be home again"
torment that takes the place of childhood boogeymen in closets
and becomes fantastic nightmares
that last forever and ever

so you gave us your all
you gave us your call
of pain
you spoke of rivers of deceit
and men in boxes
and the Heaven beside you
just out of reach
like those faded kaleidoscopes
those colors
the gleam of that Heaven
not meant for you to enjoy

but then you drowned yourself in snow
beneath its depths
told yourself to bite off
and swallow chunks of Hell on the way down
smacked by smack
you never got up again
and your fall to Earth
was an unspoken, belated cry
one last lone wail
for Daddy

the imprint of your rainbow soul
lies in your words
still left behind
spinning in record grooves
spinning in plastic digital chrome
spinning in hard drives
spinning in minds
spinning in hearts

and so we toast your life
and hope that the same nightmares that engulfed you
do not yet again open their jaws
to swallow more wordmen
more wordwomen
but we sigh, bow our heads,
and know that they will

By Nicole Nicholson from Raven's Wing Poetry
Her first chapbook Raven Feathers is available for sale by clicking here.

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