THIS IS WHAT PAULA TAUGHT ME

I came for the benefit of a sick woman

this way, I was told
and I paused

I do not see a sick woman, I said
there, look, I was told

and I did

but I saw no one
save a radiant beauty
eyes cut from gems
sparkling
she twisted to rhythm
and good vibes
of joy
and smiled like a newborn

I came for the benefit of a sick woman,
I repeated

you’re in the right place, I was told

so I sat
ate
hugged
became witness to something

transcendent.

it came time for me to go

are you certain I’m at the right place, I said
yes, of course, I was told, and
we all joined in song

I left
full stomach
fuller heart
no longer counting the seconds
I’m dying
but rejoicing in the breaths
I’m reborn.

(for my cousin Paula)

~ Joseph A. Pinto

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

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NEW YEAR AND THE GYM

NEW YEAR AND THE GYM

it’s how it goes
raise a glass
or a paper cup
stuff food into your mouth

worry about the calories
when you join the gym
you will turn your back on
three months down the road

but your resolutions
won’t last nearly as long

a grand idea now
they glitter like
ornaments on your tree
soon to be packed away

forgotten and cold in your attic
boxed from the cruelties of winter
still by summer they’ll remain

like your gym membership
a grand idea

but nothing you intended to see through.

~ Joseph A. Pinto

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

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THE SMALL ONE

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THE SMALL ONE

It was a quick visit. I didn’t even realize I needed one but
obviously you knew better. That’s the thing about signs;
they appear when not requested, revealed when your eyes
are blind. Your phantom touch allowed me to feel my gravity
weighing me down. Then you were gone, swallowed by an
expanse of blue sky, leaving me the small one in your wake.

~ Joseph A. Pinto

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

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IN THE LAST DUSTY BAR

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IN THE LAST DUSTY BAR

thought i had lost you
because it had been so long
since i felt anywhere near right
but you found me in the
last dusty bar i had frequented;
sauntered beside me
shushed my questions
splashed Scotch across my lips
lit fire to my tongue
and said:
“write, motherfucker”

my muse always has a way with words.

~ Joseph A. Pinto

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

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CINDER AND ASH

CINDER AND ASH

I fucked it all up, didn’t I?
and what I did can’t be undone,
can it?
I thought I held us firm
but
wound up squeezing too hard
now I’m left staring at the dust
and
it’s much more painful than looking at your face
(which remains angelic, by the way).
I’m a prisoner to my own Hades
and
the fires that burn, well,
they’ve burnt cinder back to cinder
and
ash back down to ash
in a recycled mad chaos of sorts.
I wish I could tell you how much
I ache for you
but
doing so would only cause me to
splinter further.
Doing so would cause you to
suffer further.

~ Joseph A. Pinto

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

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