REPRIEVE

REPRIEVE

is it okay if I lay beside you?
because I can’t keep my eyes open much longer
i’ve been pretty tired as of late
and things have seemed
to slow down around me.

is it okay if I cry on your pillowcase?
i’d wash it but it’ll dry soon enough
that’s the way an old ache goes
flowing with the deep thaw
soon parched from summer’s haze.

is it okay if I call out old names in the dark?
the more I speak them the more I’ll remember
not to forget
i’d like to write them in a jazz song someday
sing a melody whether the band’s ready or not.

is it okay if I lay beside you?
won’t be much longer till I see the light
and that old ache flows on
whisper to me while my breaths grow shallow
whisper to me goodnight.

~ Joseph A. Pinto

© Copyright 2013 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

MY OWN GOD TONIGHT

MY OWN GOD TONIGHT

Fogged I am, and still I cannot clear my reflection from what I perceive
in my mind. The water is as cleansing as the voices in my head;
if you stop and listen closely, you will hear them too, beckoning
to the infinite ends. Still, I pause to recollect myself, lather and
reconnect myself –
I cannot dredge this razor into my cheek hard enough. My grief, like my
stubble, falls, only to grow back thicker by tomorrow’s end. Fogged,
and still this steam cannot obscure what I trick myself to comprehend.
On these voices beckon: You are your own god tonight.

© Copyright 2015 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

BOWED STILL I STRIDE

BOWED STILL I STRIDE

Your purpose seems hell-bent on serving to demassify me –
when will you learn that unlike the storms that have reshaped your landscape,
I will never seek higher ground.
I will not compartmentalize to fit any ideal but my own;
bowed still I stride,
and when your voice hits hurricane pitch in protest, I will know I lived free of compromise
after all.

© Copyright 2015 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

STRAIN

STRAIN

The E.R. seemed quiet
a ruined man coughing up ghosts
sneezing lies of what home should be
an overweight woman bleeding from her soul,
condescending son lamenting his late night
and they avoid my gaze (well they should)
for my pain would serve only to break them.
Pretty nurse takes pulse, pressure
eyes sparkling as they meet my own
“Sir, this may hurt a bit” (needle penetrates my joint).
I laugh, make one thing clear:
“Never me.”
The E.R. seemed quiet
now the pretty nurse choked on ghosts
wheezing breaths where life should be
if only she had looked away.

© Copyright 2013 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

Your Answer

YOUR ANSWER

And for every answer you want
from me, I ask
how could I be without you?
And for every reason you demand
of me, I ask
how could I flow if my river
runs dry?
I know you tire of the constant game of tag we seem
to play
but without your laughs echoing
my playground
this seesaw falls short of
the sky.
So for every explanation you seek
of me, I ask
how could you ever be far from
my eye?

© Copyright 2015 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.

MOLD

MOLD

I saw you there;
in the half-light of candle
you seemed a flickering wraith
but the pruned expression with which
you regarded me only served to extinguish
me further. I wished to reach out,
to reshape the face I once recognized
but clay only hardens if left to serve testament
to air.

© Copyright 2014 Joseph A. Pinto. All Rights Reserved.