About Jesse

I am Jesse. I like Irish caps, enjoy beer, love traveling, and hate cilantro. I eat too much and exercise to little; I am American. That's it for now.

“us”

Listen,
It’s getting late—
I sense a pressure and  hesitation
in your breath…

Don’t worry,

I am not hunting for love or  intense intimacy—not now—
that can wait.

I barely know you
and that’s okay.
there many more days
and many places to stumble,
things to see, and stars to jump to
until we drop…

we can worry about that future and the
definition of “us” later—I’ll look forward to it—
but until then

a simple conversation will do,
where ever they lead…
I’m okay with those chances.

and no….
there is no pressure,
no desperation,

I’m not in search of pent house bragging rights,
conquests, tally marks, emotionless, scripted, lust-filled rendezvous.
but a cup of tea?

I’d love some tea.

And remember,
some of the most intimate moments
are when nothing really happens—
rainy days and a movie
(Bogart and Bacall perhaps?)
long walks  at sun set—cliché I know—
or maybe just sitting hanging out in the park,
a book in your hands, my notepad and pen in mine.

simply existing,
comforted by silence,
allowing our passions to intersect.

I think we can get there, but there’s no rush
there are still those moments to be had,
the inside jokes, the simple under standings,
the long pauses, and endless laughter—that’s
where we’ll find that definition.

that’s how we,
if you’re willing,
we can define,
“us.”

Chocolate Cake

“I want you.”

She said, looking through the glass
pointing a chocolate cake.

She then sat at a stool at the counter.

I sat alone in a booth half-watching, waiting for my scrapple and eggs
sipping luke-warm coffee
as I flipped through the morning paper.

Accident knocks out town’s power
Gasoline tax hike in Pennsylvania
I watched her order, pointing across the room to the chocolate cake in window,
the waitress, Barb, laughs and goes and gets the cake.

It’ doesn’t matter that it’s only 6:30am,
that the sun is just thinking about waking up,
that there’s a long day ahead, and norms
and expected procedures to follow.

She knows what she wants,
I admire that,

and the chocolate cake knows what it’s like to be wanted.
Ignoring any weird implications of being jealous of a cake
(I personally loathe chocolate cake),
I continued to read the paper.
1 Dead, 30 Hurt in Massive I-76 Pileup in Montgomery County
Brothers charged for storm-sewer thefts.
Crowds gather to mourn baby set on fire in NJ
Freezing Rain to return Wednesday.

She gasps, “This good—this really good, I love this! Thanks Barb,”
her mouth smudged with the icing.

And despite all the horrors and tragedies of the everyday,
I just knew that today,

 

today was going to be a good day.

 

 

The Past

 

 

You’re interwoven through
dust covered notepads,
scribbles, jots,
poetry, and rants.

The day, the night,
the bits in-between and after,

that majority of always.

I think I knew you, once,
if not for a brief moment,
intimately, closely,

we were one, so I dream,
but time,

time moves on

people, places, moments change.
Nostalgia taints memory,
all that glitters now was not gold,
but perhaps that’s for
the best.

see the hollow horrors, from the long nights still hover,
regrets and the would-have could-have should-haves
still linger,

they always will linger there as the darkness in the sky,

but, still, I would not change a thing.
You were perfect, so it seems,
now.

Speckled in that night sky like stars those tainted
memories romanticized mere moments
long walks, talks, autumn nights,
summer mornings,

the obscure and the mundane.

Rarely you hear of someone gazing into the darkness,
so here I am gazing, once again,
into the stars.

I can’t believe how great we really were, forever
and always,

but for just for those brief moments,
that passage of time which lead me here

the present, a continuation of that forever,
and always but different… always different

because no matter of how far  I reach back
or up for the stars, you’re out of reach,
but to kneel and down and reach
there’s the earth beneath my fingers.

I stand and hesitantly walk forward,
forging through the darkness
guided by the light
of your
stars.

 

 

I Drink Less Now

I drink less now
and I’m not sure if it’s because
I have less to drink
or if I’m too distracted.

My cherished flask that sits on my desk,
it was once reserved for lonely lips on long nights—
late night fuel to fire up stagnant synapse.
Dust has settled on its nozzle
along with the pencils, notepads,
and the
keyboard.

Yes,
I confess,
I write less now—but I’m not saying there’s less to write—

there’s more to write, there’s always more to write,

and it itches and itches but
at some point a man must steps away from fictions
in order to figure out
which truths are
real…

life is where the muses live
after all.
So as I forge forward,
my eyes focus on the sunrise and
sun sets and everything
in between and after, and
my ears eavesdropping on Nature
and all those around,
the day to day becomes
my adventure.

The stranger, the unknown; my puzzle.
questions and answers beget further questions and answers and questions

And so on and so forth.

Not all is meant to be understood or known, paradox
and the unanswered spark further appreciation—grinning
I walk on, contemplating the vast expanse of my own ignorance,
there’s a lot to conquer that I will never conquer,

And I find a lot of comfort in that—I will always be busy.

And although, my back seems to be to the page,
I hold all the words close to my finger-tips, nurturing them
in conversations, allowing them to flow in dreams,
letting them blossom and ferment
until their own toxicity
is enough.

So I promise the words (unlike the flask,
the pencils, notepads,
and the keyboard) never
get dusty.

But yes,

I write less now
but it’s not because
I have less to write
and, no, I’m not too distracted.

Condolence

She had tears flowing down her
face dripping off her chin splashing
as little droplets on to the floor.

I sat next to her in the pew in silence
I really wasn’t sure if she wanted to
be alone—we all
deal with death
differently.

Her head fell into her
cupped hands as she
took a deep breath
and heavily sobbed.

“Are you okay?” She didn’t say anything.
It was a dumb question, I know.
She just leaned in against my side, and
I put my arm around her.

“Why him?”

I looked up to a statue of Christ
mounted above the casket. His head was tilted
towards us crowned with crown of thorns. I looked into
his eyes, but today he gave no answers. He just looked on.
We all deal with death differently.

“I guess it just happened.” It was the wrong thing to say,
but it’s all I could say. I took slight comfort
in randomness instead of thinking
death as planned or with reason. I listened to her
sobs—I felt helpless for myself
and my ability to comfort her and
for the long, long days ahead.

We sat in the pews for a while until
her uncle came up to me, placing
his hand on my shoulder.

“It’s time,” he said gently.

I nodded
as he turned around and
went back to the lobby.

I lifted my arm from around her and
and I stopped myself from asking
if she was ready—

she never was going to be ready.

“How do I look?” the little makeup
she wore was slightly running, her hair
was a bit tattered, and her expression
weary and lost. But there were her eyes
They looked deep within me in search
for some sort of hope or comfort—
“you know, you eyes are beautiful when you cry?”
A dumb thing to say, I know, but I didn’t know
what to say so I just said the truth.

She feigned a smile and a faint laugh,
“well, at least we have that.”
We both stood up and headed for the lobby
to be with the rest of her family.

“It’s going to be a very long day.”
“I know, and I’ll be here for you if you need me.”
“Thanks,” she said giving me a slight hug from the side
tearing up once again.

I embraced her and we stood there
for a short moment that
felt faintly like an eternity but
then quickly faded back
to reality.

She took in a deep breath
as I opened up
the door.

Fishing

My father was never a religious man,
and I, the same as he.

Yet, I can tell
you as we sat outside on
cool spring mornings
in silence entranced by
the ripples of the trout stream,
we were closer to God
than most.

 

I like to think
God was there with us
with his Son, Jesus, just
up stream—

See, that’s the reason we didn’t catch much.

Jesus was there applying a few tricks
which learned from his disciples
standing upon the water
with a line in his hand,
and the Father
who is the water, the Earth, and all
already had all the fish in
the lakes
and
seas

which left us with
near nothing,
just the wind, bird song, small talk
and a cool breeze
but that was enough.
Fishing was never really about fishing, anyway.

It’s about a father and his son and
the Father and the Son.

Just us and Nature.

Just another day.

There is a serene peace in the summer sky,
the gentle warmth of night
crickets calling out my name
“Jesse,

Join us
for we are freedom.”

And I want to go with them
through brush, into the
trees, in to the vast wilderness
that is unknown,
it’s my Nature.

Yet, I sit on my porch
shackled with a watch
too aware of time

morning beckons,
and people call
responsibilities
held,

I sip my glass of wine
and breathe in,
bury all regrets,
exhale and attempt
to ignore the impending
tomorrow which will
be almost like every
day,

just another day.

And the crickets call
“join us
for we are freedom”

I look at my cellphone
and read messages from
my distant friends

all of them trapped as I in
the great disappointment that
is the now.

Nothing new.

I can only pray that some tomorrow
we will look back on today and
view it as what it really was, wasted,

and not some glorified gilded lily
feeding some skewed nostalgia
which so often
happens.