Empty is Everything


There’s a change in the air

brief flashes

shaded in El Greco skies

hammering messages

where mountains rise

but remain indecipherable

in the distance.

Behold the lucent wind gusts

shimmering in the light

transient angels in flight

shivering the landscape

from leaves to window panes

with a whistling refrain

as they pass into the distance.

Unprepared to sever completely

the warmth that holds you inside,

seeping into the skin

enveloping, sleeping in

to the collapse

of autumnal ash

in smoldering wood fires.

Its scented aura

expelled from the parlour

to halo chimneys

in the distance.

Through small drifts

the runaway is renewed,

clouds never stationary

but guided through our periphery,

leaving no trace

save a silent footprint

that borders the space

where the sky meets the sea

in the distance.

A bead of sweat

is a poem still wet,

 the stain of its ink

won’t cover the landscape we think,

evading rain

it’s driving and draining

your every thought,

laying the stone of this road

alternating dreams

with all you were taught

passed by way of blacktop

receding into the distance.

Memory is brightly guiding

in the darkest of places

bonfires on beaches,

so gather what you wish

until loosened from a gloved fist

that supple fish

swimming to far shores

years in the distance.

It is something to grasp at

but come up empty.

Well empty is everything…

to us anyway.


These Cycles Will Repeat


The head that swims

sees land growing dim

as the light caved in

to a watery grave.

Something keeps it buoyant

as the swallow’s flight

reflects the fading light

upon flickering wings.

Sovereign strings gone astray

remnants of the kings

in the dismembered lei
cast upon the sea to float away.

Turbulent the waves that “progress”

paves over the picture

of one stoic figure

and her defining act of temperance.


The soft wind that grasps

sets exotic traps

like affairs from long ago

caught in the extended lapse

against luxuriant shores,

in time the tide encroaches crown land a little more.

How big business could disfigure

without a blast

still trauma lends instruction to the past.

Vestiges of the monarchy to hold fast

for those seeking its reflection

in a canopy of glass.

Through the portal

at Merchant and Alakea you pass

the curve of history

how it guides with unseen mystery

the blinking light of insight

in this city of multifarious eyes

glittering on the darkened skies

littering the abyss

with its unspeakable slide

of debris and violence.

The senseless silence of innocence

the death of Kahahawai

the heavy suggestion of something revitalized

in the springs of Ka Wai a Ha’o

seeping into the fertile ground.

<Taut are the strings of the imagination

when pulled Pali bound

into its time warp

stretched like a tarp over glistening skin

and if you’re listening to the wind

or watching the rain

slant through the street lamps

dampening another vacant aisle,

halt outside the courtroom

and meditate on the Massie trial,

on justice and the Governor’s denial

beyond fragrant ginger

it reeks of something vile,

sugared interests,

Naval rank and file.

It’s a scent you cannot vent

from the air of sadness.

Offerings of word

seeking solitude to purge

in palatial yards.

Shadows on the palms

that put them down

on this hallowed ground

while the moon illumes clouds

to assume shapes the day shrouds,

warriors from out of cave mouths

march to the sea

Akua lele leap

into the Kaena deep

as it always has

despite those that no longer believe

in the power of intention

these cycles will repeat

chants will be remembered

the moment they’re mentioned

the healing can begin.