Quatorzain 456

Liza, I’m learning the power of fear,
and I don’t care a damn for it!          today
the sun shines elsewhere, my teeth are caught down
low in my throat, cold sweat beads on my brow,
marrow has turned to fetid water, blood
spilled out over night—I’m certain gremlins
replaced it with lipton’s tasteless iced tea—
heart no muscle but a bony fist holding
something black like tar, perhaps the fossiled
remains of old loves and lessons discarded
in effigies burned to light pity parties:
lives gone by, exchanged for something . . . different,
never better, and no matter how green
the grass . . . I never had the stomach of a goat.

David M Pitchford
3 Dec 2011


War Stories #79

without cindy here day in and day out,
I don’t know     .      .     .      but without the program, I
sure as hell wouldn’t be around to share
these stories of courage without strength, these
forlorn tales of those caught under the bus,
run over in life’s sideway paths lost be-
tween the cracks     .     .     .      without this hope, without
wisdom shared and bullets bitten within
fellowship, how could I hope to arti-
culate these dramas faced and unfaced drunk
sober and drunk again, now sober to
remain, twelve steps out of hell and walking
hand-in-hand with the unlikely love of my life,
my once and forever partner, cindy.

David M Pitchford
27 Oct 2011            *final of this project to be posted

War Stories #17

where in the world is our place? billy asked
me once. folks like us, the ones run over
by life and this curious world, where do
we fit in? I recall shoving a mescal
bottle at him and telling him to drink
from the teat of earthen kindness, just to
shut him up. nothing like deep water to
kill a good buzz. but then, sometimes questions
like that—under the right influence, or
perhaps the wrong—they pull you in like some
addiction centered in the mind itself,
that’s a drug you can’t buy on any street.
hasn’t stopped me looking at any rate,
always this search for island of misfits . . .

David M Pitchford
22 Oct 2011


a man needs someone to know him, my shrink
tells me. in business, it’s sometimes who you
know, but in life it’s always a matter
of who knows you. there’s something hardwired there
that makes us crave, need even, that contact,
that contract if you will, of knowing and
being known—an accountability—
in a social sense whether or not in
a moral or ethical sense. a need
for continuity . . . without that link,
we flirt with the dissolution of per-
sonality, of personhood; and that
becomes the short track to insanity,
not the fun kind, but of the sociopath.

David M Pitchford
14 Oct 2011

Stockholm Syndrome

Beloved Captor

From this solitude of sin, I long to
break through to the heart of you, but keep
getting stuck in your honey. The only way
to impose your will on the world is to
cease being willful. Surrender this, then:
at the point of trap the trapper is trapped,
ownership an inescapable
dichotomy of possession. False truth.

Free me to own me. Liberty a rein
from which none rebel. Trust me or leave me
to die of freedom. Having been caged here
so long, my heart cannot fly beyond fear,
beyond that love which safety taught; unchained,
we long for that hated security.

 David M Pitchford, 10Jun2011

Not sure this is finished, so please feel free to comment. Would quite enjoy some constructive feedback. Thanks.

The Foil-gilded Chain

Letting It All Fall Away

It’s a matter of living day by day:
embracing the now, dumping this baggage
salvaged from seasons past, exile’s luggage,
heavy loads—letting it all fall away
for the sake of living life day to day,
stowaway on Life’s ferry—no passage
but the willingness . . . no need for courage
or remorse. Letting it all fall away.

Encumbrance of the past weighs too heavy,
an anchor tied with a foil-gilded chain
to memory, fault, failures, guilts that go on,
and unrealized potential heavy
as lead and precious as gold—and as pain—
Let it all fall away now; life goes on.

David M Pitchford
24 November 2009

Too Late the Echo

When the Echoes Die

For months I clung to that hope: “No such thing
as too late . . .” Its echo the gravity
holding me close to that old orbit. Now
its echoes die away if not into
impossibility, then into slim
probability. Lost outside her light,
I listen for hints of hope, search shadows
within shadows without knowing not what
these distances hold outside love’s orbit.
“No such thing as too late . . .” echoes far
off, trailing into the past—such thing as
too late . . . these echoes die . . . and now spinning
into outer darkness, swallowed by these
shadows of my own making, I hear, “. . . too late . . .”

Daivd M Pitchford
18 November 2009