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Love & Relationships
Love Poems
 by Steve Price
The Lost Song
I lost a song I loved.
It had played as the end credits rolled
in a film I'd seen alone.

It was by a group who'd lost their leader
tragically yet went on to do
this song with his spirit between the notes.

I forget the name of the song,
the group, the leader, the film,
year, theater, city....

That's what happens sometimes.
Songs get lost when we lose
ourselves somewhere along our way.

Today in a tiny pause
a breath of that song passed through me,
reminding me I'd forgotten it.

If you're ever feeling lost, or forgotten,
be completely quiet, and feel how I
love you the way that song loves me.

In a moment of stillness a vague memory of a song arose in me. It took some internet research to recover the specifics. It's "Quicksand & Lies," recorded by Little Feat for the soundtrack to White Sands (1992) about ten years after the death of the band's leader, Lowell George. This poem is about how love comes through with the details being unimportant.   -- Steve
Way of Life

He was found in bed with the alarm clock beeping.
They thought he was dead
Yet the opposite was true.
He was being born,
Absolutely alive & awake to the God's honest truth
That he didn't need to move.
No slave to time was he.
His eyes remained closed as he dreamed his reality.

The psychiatrists sat across from him.
Sounds from their throats passed into the air.
He didn't recognize it as language;
Instead he absorbed the vibrations before
They could be nailed as words into coffins.
He stuck to his guns, continuing to be born.

His lover had concerns.
She preferred the man he had been
Before re-entering infancy.
Then, one morning, something interesting happened.
Her alarm clock went off, and she didn't move.
She felt him inside of her.
They were twins, emerging at the same time.

One morning I was mediating and when my timer when off, I wasn't ready to come out. So I stayed there for a bit, letting it beep. I imagined remaining like that until someone discovered me.   -- Steve

I'm playing it by ear.
Don't ask me what "it" is.
If I knew, it wouldn't be by ear
and it wouldn't be played.
I'm listening for it
in your voice, for an opening to it.
Not inflection, not tone—
more like a silent sigh of heat
for me to feel my way.
It's like a tiny sliver of pie
left in the tin, still warm.
It doesn't seem like much
but it's all I want and I
don't want to know what it is,
because once I know
it will be gone.

The first line simply popped into my head. I wrote it down and followed it the way you might take a back road you've never been on. The poem ended up being about not ever really knowing someone, and how that constant unknowing is what attracts and interests you.  -- Steve
A Window

is what I see
when first I look at you
from the outside:

fourth floor, at the end,
right of the fire escape.
Not the first one
a person might notice.

No rattling, no slamming,
no American flag or cleavage
emerging from a bath towel.

Your glass is clear.
A thin, white curtain
slow-dances in the cool breeze.

When you let me inside
I can look out, and see myself
on the sidewalk looking up at you:

flowers behind my back,
heart in front.

When we're in love--whether it's with a beautiful painting or another person--we can become so extroverted, with all our energy pouring outward, that we neglect ourselves. The Taoists have a practice of turning the perspective around to bring the attention back to the lover. Try it with a flower: feel the flower looking at you. Then try it in the mirror, imagining that you're the reflection being looked at. Then try it with a friend or significant other. If you fall in love with yourself, fantastic!   -- Steve

The town crumbles around us.
Old bricks, chipped and pink
Plant themselves in snow, bulbs
Waiting for spring. Our desires
Deeply sleep, gathering darkness.
Eventually the fallen night will rise.
What we never before felt is building.

Relationships go through seasons like everything else. In winter, whatever dies or goes
dormant can be transmuted into something fresh. I'm just now vaguely recalling a story about
Emily Dickinson coming across a flower blooming impossibly in the snow, and how it changed
the way she saw everything. If anybody knows anything about this, or a poem inspired by it,
please shoot me an e-mail.  -- Steve

The Hallmark store isn't there any more.
I go in anyway,
Greeted this time by a psychic.
The Tarot card
I get is called The Moon.
A dog is howling at it.
She says it means I'm in love
But I can't take it with me.
What I came to pick out for you
I have to make myself, out of myself.
Now you know why I'm folded in half.
When you open me up
All my feelings for you will be revealed.

I thought it would be interesting to go to a business with a specific intention, only to find it replaced with another business--and go in anyway. I just started writing this with no idea what the outcome would be. As Hemingway said, "No surprise for the writer, no surprise for the reader."  -- Steve
Seeing In The Dark

is warm rain drying as it lands on you.

is cool sun wetting your skin.

are me with sun raining on our legs.

am you with rain shining in our eyes.

We get so stuck in this physical dimension, locked into a presumed view of the world, our relationships, ourselves. Poetry is one way to unlock, to see in new ways that liberates us and brings us together.  -- Steve

Full is the moon
Regardless of the light upon it
Or the clouds in front or if your
Eyes are open or closed.

Full is this glass we share
Whether of wine
Or water or moonlight.

Full is how you are always
Rising inside me.

One full-moon night we went on a date to the Farm at South Mountain. We sat outside at a table with a full fire in the center of it, ate until we were full (I had seconds) and shared a glass of flavorful red wine. Everything about it was full, which is how life is when you empty your mind and open your heart.  -- Steve
Ripley In Love

It's snowing underwater.
Wide flakes holding moonlight
Float through the dark fluidity.
Our bodies tilt backwards slightly,
Just enough to enjoy the view.
Believe it or not, we can see
The stars from these depths
Where nothing makes sense
And never did or will
Except this feeling in which
We are so fantastically suspended.

Olive, my 10-year-old daughter, was watching a Sponge Bob Square Pants episode where they were playing in the snow. "How can it snow underwater?" she asked me. To which I replied, "That's going to be a poem."  -- Steve
Sea Life

Sometimes I get away from myself
Underwater so long I forget I'm a dolphin
And which way is up
And that the sun is shining downward
And then you say my name and I

Break the surface, gather warm air,
Keep it around me and use it to part
The water as I plunge back down
Deeper than before into a remembering
What it's like to be dolphins with you

We recently spent eight days at a workshop in southern California. We stayed right on the beach. In the mornings we saw what we were told were porpoises migrating across the ocean a few hundred yards out, breaking the surface and submerging again. The word "porpoise" didn't sound quite right in this poem; hence "dolphin."   -- Steve
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