Noel Negele

Love

To watch old
photographs
of hers
from when she was a baby

a round-cheeked girl
with large black eyes
that were
pure and curious

a healthy stubbornness
apparent between her brows

an innocence in her smile
that overwhelms you
with a feeling of melting

a woman now

a woman that
makes you proud

makes you want to try

a crooked smile,
a bigger curve
on one side
of her mouth

left dimple
deeper
than the right

soft, pale
thighs
half-covered
by your bed sheets

the warmth
of her ass
in winter

sleeping embraced
by each other

no such thing
as sadness
when she’s around

you cannot fail

anxiety—
a plague that plagues
others,
you’re not worried at all

sleeping embraced

her small hand
groping for yours
in the dark

her soft voice
in a whisper
saying
my love

your heart
could as well
be a frantic
bird singing
in the cage
of your chest

on the verge
at times
of proclaiming
absolute happiness

or immortality

sharing the intimate
darkness of each night

as the sun
comes up
each time

and goes
down again

as it will do

until the final day
they’ll dig that hole
for a body detached
by its soul

or whatever they call
this vessel
in you

that’s brimming over

with this feeling.




The mayhem of our youth


Sure it had its appeal—-
that time in life
you were so unbelievably young
you were almost
legitimately insane—-
and yes, looking back
at all that degeneration 
was a thing to behold—-
the nonchalant 
and mindless
booze consumption 
and drug intake and
the countless stumblings
from whore house
to whore house—-
and all those girls 
even wilder than you 
on your wildest—
naked, pale girls 
leaning over the plate
on the nightstand 
to take a good line
of Devils dandruff
as their breasts dangled
like firm but ripe fruits—
Yes, the frenzied
drug-fueled nights 
with the one on one fights 
that made you beat on your chest 
like a Gorilla
after it was done
or the group brawls
in slumping bars
under a shower of broken
beer shards—-
Yes, the dripping blood
on faces of people 
you had never meet before that night 
and the knife threats
the knife attacks 
the Molotov cocktails 
against riot police
because you’d read Bakunin 
back then 
and because you were angry 
and willing to hurt people—-
Yes, you were lucky to
get out of that youth 
scathed but very much alive
and truth be told and
because the older you get 
the less you bullshit yourself,
I never did have the stomach 
for all that 
and it never even came close
to filling that black hole 
at the front of my heart
that always remained and felt
infinitely empty
and there’s no more absolute
nothingness
than infinitely empty 
and no matter how many people
I pushed into that hole 
the love attempts 
the literature
the intoxication
the anger
the affection
it made no difference—-

But now,
much older than then,
I’ve stopped dropping 
things into that hole 

now I’ve learned to live with it.
Now, sometimes I’ll look 
deep into that hole—
and the deeper I look
the more probable it becomes
that it might not be so empty.

Now, I am much older.
The thought of that lost 
and misplaced youth 
sounds loud to my ears,
it sullies my peace of mind.

Now, I sit on my porch
and drink the first cold beer
in weeks 
because I promised myself I would
on the first day the temperature 
would reach thirty degrees
and I stare at the tree tops
swinging with the warm summer
breeze and notice the sound
of a particular twig 
that sounds like a creaky door 
with each mild gust 
and I think of my thirty three
days matured steaks 
marinating in my fridge
the whole day now 
and even though I’m hungry 
I light a cigarette and wait until
I’m famished 
and I look deep into that hole
at the front of my bloated heart
and realize 
I haven’t heard Edith Piaf
in a long time.

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