Several years ago I began to compose biopoems to mark my birthday because this genre seemed to lend itself best to capturing the different layers and nuances of a creative individual’s life. For me, those layers are comprised of objective factual biography, interior symbolic representations of that biography, the various works produced by the individual author, and public perception or misperception of the same. Obviously, a single poem is not likely to provide a thorough documentation of an individual’s life (though some heroic efforts have come close) but by creating these poemized puzzle pieces I might one day be able to put them all together and come up with an interesting composite self-portrait in verse. For now, here’s to one more year and one more piece of a literary portrait in progress.
My Cosmic-Poet Beard in this 52nd Year
Like a twilight-gray net of silk moss and prayers,
my cosmic-poet beard in this fifty-second year
hangs loose beneath a canopy of dreams rediscovered.
Sways in starlit winds of humbled expectations.
Like slender tentacles of time and free verse,
feathery follicles blanket my heart
with visions of things new beneath the sun.
I see my past in this world fall on broken knees–
before a future stepping boldly through many others.
The green and golden winged bird of summer
last week sang icestorms in the back yard.
Cobalt eyes blinked lightning and suddenly
a rainbow wrote across the sky, “Lift up thine eyes oh poet.”
Scratching my fur-coated chin, out falls a tiny blue moon.
Then pages from an unpublished manuscript,
songs of my deceased children’s laughter,
some of MJ’s scorching angst and Obama’s lyrics too.
My cosmic-poet beard in this fifty-second year
cannot compete with the white of new snow
or the regal stretch of eagles’ wings soaring
on currents of humored wisdom and chastised glory.
Happy with its muse, it sings rhymes and pays me no mind.
© July 2009