Groove and Tongue

The street narrows.
Its black surface absorbs all light.
A channel forms a center line that pulses.

The light flows east to west in the morning.
Gravity has no effect.
At high noon it pauses then reverses course.

Three black city rats exit the sewer.
They sprint through stalled traffic.
They stop to drink—turn luminescent blond.

copyright © 2023 Kenneth P. Gurney

Unapproved Conjecture

And God saw the light
and it was so-so.

He tried to reshape it
but each time he touched the photons
butterflies burst forth.

When each of God’s breaths
passed into the beams
a new language took shape.

The radiation in the light
burned God’s hands.

As he tried to reshape the beam
carbon based life sprang into existence
when the photons carried sloughed skin
to planetary surfaces on the solar wind.

Eventually God turned light off
to work on the source
in the dark void where he was accustomed
to getting things done
with a lack of complication.

God grew frustrated with the unfixable source.
He squeezed it between both hands.

A great explosion took place
generating hundreds of billions of smaller lights
that being scared of their creator
ran away from God in every direction.

And God saw those hundreds of billions of lights
and thought them good.

copyright © 2022 Kenneth P. Gurney

Glow

The trick is
to hold out your hand
and convince
a cluster
of carbon-dioxide
molecules
to dance
upon your palm
which will
produce a white light
while you stand
perfectly still—
static—
and it will last
as long as you
keep the molecules
excited.

So do this trick
in the nude
and exhale
deep breaths
onto your palm
as if you blow
a kiss
across the room.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney

Cipher

I found
a secret
lodged
behind a loose
wall stone
not typical
of this
geography.

It was
written in code
and a feminine
scent rose
from the ink,
which was
the rust color
of oxidized
lipstick.

All the while
the sunshine
changed
from honey
to golden
to yellow
to the norm
of invisible
light that
provides definition.

copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

Sayings

Angel, you live in the holy light
and we live in your shadows.

Please dance so your movement
lets a little light through

and I can see when the light glints
off my daughter’s sparkly halo.

I scrub the kitchen floor
and this corner is too dark for me to tell

if I got it Clean as a whistle
so I may prove I have done nothing immoral.

Angel, thank you for folding your wings
and getting down on your hands and knees

to help me buff this linoleum beautiful
as in Cleanliness is next to godliness.

But Angel, you spread that darkness
over my shiny linoleum floor—

the shadowy shape my dog casts
carrying a dead squirrel to her dish.

copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

Disrobing

I thought I was home.
I was in the arctic.

I climbed out of my father
and left his body upon the ice.

The relative temperature felt the same
against bare skin.

I mean I left behind his behaviors I learned
through childhood observation.

I mean I never want my hand
to make a fist to teach a lesson.

Not even to punch a hole
through the darkness in search of light.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney

Delight As A Fly

Paul tried to feed his logical mind
so he could taste the infinite.

But logic rejected all of his astronaut dreams,
fantastical dragons and Dali surrealism.

So his mind ate a bland fair
of serious words and earth sciences.

His eyes saw starlight as math.
Equations proved speed and time.

His arm never rose from his side
to reach toward the galaxy.

Mid-sentence he lost himself
as nearby thunder shook

an oyster shell open
to reveal an opalescent sun.

It rose out of the shell
to take a place in Paul’s void.

It spun in that empty space
around an all consuming blackness

that entangles stars
but consumes only one arc second of light.

A single ray as thin as spider silk
stretched across empty parsecs.


copyright © 2020 Kenneth P. Gurney