What is Completed?


The interpretation of art,

like a rebirth of thought.

Each new piece regenerates

all that came before it.

It venerates the ancestor

of no definitive answer,

instead coloring and giving birth

to an infinite texture.

Contours you’ll resume

by tracing this womb throughout.

It begins by lightly brushing the surface,

as graceful as a lizard’s limbs

over the coarse skin of tree bark.

The canvass stretched taut,

silent and thin as a moth’s wings

deafening when you’re listening

to a certain frequency of rain,

it resonates like a train of thought,

seismic as a teardrop in a pool,

radiating in myriad directions.

Each stroke is an impression,

passing over the surface like an apparition,

tuned into the unseen,

its lingering reception recalling

all those things that stay with you.

Each step is an embryo

for new material to come through

the subconscious,

no longer dormant

but with a slow flow

as if emerging from a volcano,

the vaporous past absorbed into the current,

transformed from within,

to be reborn as new land

calling into question

as you perceive from the edge

“What is ever fully completed?”


With Grave Irony


The old ways disintegrate like waves in a lost break.

When sand is shipped in

and the coral is swept away.

The floral air

once fragrant and clear

now hangs likeĀ  a vog in the atmosphere.

Acid rains from dark clouds

sewerage stains in Ala Wai ripples

luminescent abstracts from street lamps

replaces the moon whose stamps

once brilliantly rested on an ink-black surface.

Now in the rush of heavy traffic

that moves without purpose

always crowding its way into the picture

of nature

castaway in a film-clipped motion

to the currents of a discarded pool.

Father time is a deaf mute

and silence settles no score.

Voices were drowned out

and struggle settled like silt on the ocean floor.

You can hear them at times in the blowhole moaning

as if mourning their passing.

Their muffled cries still trapped in the land,

in the gasp of wind

through shattered palace windows

or on the tide-battered rock wall,

who takes down their cryptic scrawl?

Where the waves crawl

and antiquity collapses into the sea,

note with grave irony,

that which was once so powerful,

still disperses easily.

A pre-statehood Hawaii,

soon to disintegrate into waves of outsiders,

invasive seeds

strangling what was once pristine,

replacing with industry and enterprise

with highways and highrise

greed in its civilized disguise,

native land in a tourniquet tied

in high wires and eyesore telephone towers

that stand out like tumors on the sacred peaks.

There’s plenty of reception

to pose the question,

Does progress hear through the static and speak

of all that cannot be replaced?