Life/Waves

Illustration for the poem "Life/Waves" by Robert Lutz

Life is all
About the waves
That like thunder crash
Onto the shore
And drag the debris
Back Into the sea

Life is all
About landing ashore
Carried by the waves
And returning to the sea
Dragged by the waves
Yet carried by yourself

Life is all
About living in the sea
And riding the waves
From time to time
Never knowing when
But always again

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Last Supper

Illustration for the poem "Last Supper" by Robert Lutz

He looked upon his disciples
and said

“He who casts the dice
will be vindicated”

Astonished, they stared
at him, mouths agape

Theirs was a long silence
Nobody dared to commence
a speech act

All actors speak in tongues
Every cheek needs a tongue
Every secret needs a cheek
to hide the folly of man

Speaking is a discipline
that can be learned

Every once in a while
a disciple needs a bite
to eat

Even the learned
feel the need
to chow down
on a fleshy piece
of mouthwatering sense
from time to time

Across all epochs
of humanity’s
sleepwaking state
the dreamer spoke up
when everyone else
lay still

He bit off a bit of his tongue
tasting the metal
swallowed the pint
and replied

“A dice throw is
akin to onion soup:
as you peel back
the layers, it stings
it takes a bite
out of you
At mealtime
you get your revenge
Supper is always
the last act for someone”

They buried him
in an unknown
unmarked mass grave
just days later
before the soup
could mature enough
to realize its full
potential

His eyes were red
They still had tears
inside them

He smiled a full-belly
smile saying

“The hungry know
how to feed themselves
Every discipline seeks out
its own disciples
Every disciple is subject
to his own discipline
Hunger and its limits are
known only to the hungry”

Intimation

Illustration for the poem "Intimation" by Robert Lutz

Heavy notes in heavy
boats of sound

Movement, both too much
and too little
too rocky too brittle
singing just a little

All trains no stops
just voices no boasting

Strange requests
too forceful
too exciting
too much shaking
I am jittery
Nothing more to
Say but “Ok let’s
do it”

Shaking in the past
Now settling slowly
and suddenly dropping
and drifting and
drifting through
sand and air
stuck without a stick

Now more now
more sullen oh
depth of perplexity
oh vast specters of
width and shrill
with painful contortion
who sings but the
singer and who
writes but him who
sounds the notes that
all sing together
and all alone

Why the sound
why the movement
yet stillness and
quiet inside and out
all around

Continuously producing
not products but value
I am the valuation
I am the sign and I
speak both too much
and too little and
the lines are short
because the pages
are narrow and beauty
beauty is hollow and
I rest inside of it
sitting leaning cleaning
myself as I watch
how it all happens

It all happens so
slowly but quick
nevertheless and I
am lost in the
sound of time
with the timeless
pulse of language
stringing words together
intimately words with
words and you with
me and others and
I with others deeply
but hollow sharing
sounds and kindness

Now fast and vast
the nasty chime of
broken worn-out strings
and worn-out and
warm hearts

May I sit there
or should I stand
and will you kneel
for me that is
the question is vast
and perturbing and
what I want as
I sway and shake
and tremble
trembling will you
tremble with me
or will I tremble for
you and you will
tremble for me
by yourself but not
for yourself and
why was that the
wrong response yet
it continues so loudly
and proudly how
do I partake
how do I participate

And why so much
more and more and
the tracks are being
rolled out further as
if they didn’t want to end
at all but had to
eventually like a note
that sounds but knows
it will come to rest
with the rest in the
heart why lover and
child can’t you hear
how sad this all is
sad and beautiful do you
want it would you
say “Let’s do it!”
Sing with me before
I die and we die
and I must sing and
cry because singing
is not enough

And the words flow
as the music unfolds
folds contracts and
folds into the contours
of your face the
face of God the
savior where we
wait and rest and
will you kneel for
me and do I want
you to do I really
really want it even
if it perturbs me
and makes me feel
ashamed

Distinction

Illustration for the poem "Distinction" by Robert Lutz

I graduated with distinction
From the school of forms

My presence marks the absence
Of morning and another dawn

Look me in the eye and
Tell me what you see

I am bare
I am empty
I am texture
I am rigidity

My somber mood runs deep
My growth happens at
The level of roots

My crown is the sky
Birds rest on my skin

I am exposed
I am different
I am other

Do not mistake thick and black
For stuck and opaque

Do not confuse fickle and white
With agile and pure

I stand out
I don’t stand down

Leaf of Absence

Illustration for the poem "Leaf of Absence" by Robert Lutz

She has taken a leaf of absence
from the old tree by her house

Darkness and light switch off
pumping melodies into her
musical veins

She is swimming in loneliness
in the company of her kin

No one sweeps in dreamland
after they scatter the ashes
in the wind

They just brush off the foliage
to reveal the colors of fall

Green moss and blue sky kiss
brown bark and grey mountains
goodbye

In the Sand

Illustration for the poem "In the Sand" by Robert Lutz

I need to wander along
the path, walking stick
in my hand.

The sun followed me across
the sky, dried fruit
my only nourishment.

Splinters from the wood in
my flesh, worn-down leather
covered in sand.

I curse the stick for
its weight, heavy burden
of my establishment.

As I carry it through
the crowd, dark blood
colors my hand.

But then I look into
the future, walking stick
in my hand.

I refuse all help from
now on, I put my head
in the sand.