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The Four Faced Wind

Poetry by Valeria Castellanos

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Spring Cleaning

The spiders have spent the last season,
Building castles between the leaves of the lilies.
The last of the winter leaves have turned into fantastic mobiles,
Toys for the breezes, woven from abandoned webs.
The porch is covered in pollen and dust.
The blackbirds are walking all over the roof,
And, trying not to annoy us.

I have a lovely, new red broom.
The jasmine is beginning to bloom.
I have a sponge and a brush and a mop,
The grasshoppers laugh and go hop, hop, hop.
I know that no one can make them stop.
The hummingbirds come and knock on the door,
To remind us, just in case.
The squirrels are up and down the trees,
Engaging in a race.
The green lizard’s cleaning the corners,
Which I am unable to reach.
Spring has finally reached us,
And, now you can eat a peach.
I need to put water into the fountains,
So, the blue birds do not faint.
Everything else needs a new coat of paint.
And, I need a facelift,
Or, at least a good smile,
And, I need time to sit on the porch next to you,
And, to hold your hand for a while.

Written by V. Castellanos – April 8, 2020

Damn It

A thousand clowns are laughing in the sky.
Waiting and watching us as we go by.
Fools are prancing on the edge.
Dancing on the highest ledge.
Sometimes its hidden under stones.
Guard dogs are sitting under thrones.
No one now is stepping out.
No one’s going ’round about.
Close your windows,
You can shout.
It’s not obscene. What does it mean?
It’s time to clean.

Pandemic pausing in the air.
Pandemonium everywhere,
And, it seems, in every breath,
Shades of fear and fears of death.

Catalytic. Prophetic.
Time for everything to change.
Even you if you’re in range.

Here’s the Pandemic,
And, you’re in it.
Damn it.

Half Full

Nowadays, I am only half way here. The rest of me is somehow somewhere else. Half hearted is not nearly enough. Still trapped inside of my own pain. Teeth chattering. Moving in too many directions at once. Smoke in my blood. Nowhere else to go. No doorways. No windows. Down stairs only. Basement. Dungeon deep. Whirlpool. Sinkhole. Avalanche. Drowning. Dizzy. Burning. Ice. Does life always drive you insane? The earth is no longer spinning. The sky has stopped. The daylight is trapped. Bubbles are bursting. The wind speed is minus five miles per hour and dropping faster than the air pressure. Dreams and delirium dancing down the dark street, howling, beckoning into the alley, and the bottomless tar pit. This is no time to let go.

Holding onto to a feather. A fallen tree leaf with a painted flower, floating in a pond by a toad with poison skin. A dark eyed butterfly on a lilly pad, rising into sunrise. One more day. One more surprise. I am going out to fill the bird baths and water the dog wood. Breezes and buzzing bees playing in the skies. The grasshoppers are smiling. Azaleas, slightly the worse for wear, shedding wilted flowers. Perfumes and pheromones carried upwards on the songs of brightly colored birds, iridescent feathers, sharp beaks, nests in the overlooking treetops, full of sun and new eggs, pink and blue and green, speckled. Speckled like the forest sunlight filtering through the leaves. Like joy. Every color in the world.
The color of life is color, and all the colors combined make white, in the world of light. Out of the corner of my eye I see that my hair is now silver and I have a pulsating aura. I am still in love.
Nurtured by melodies and hands. Memories. Laughter. Warmth. Friendship. Whispers of clouds in the bright blue sky are taking notice and beginning to snuggle with one another, just like us. Acceptance, whether you like it or not. Breezes of cinnamon and honey, vanilla and harmony. Kisses and caresses. Clean sheets and warm, sweet tea. All is well, even storms and wasps, plagues and wars. Just battles to be fought. Something to do. Take a stand. Time always moving forward, or standing still while we move on. Just a point of view. Doesn’t matter. I can still see my reflection. Breathe deeply. I’m still here. Hold my hand. Let me hold yours. The colors don’t matter. The glass is still half full and the plums still taste like plums.

Still Dreaming

The blue moon cast shadows beneath the mahogany,
Swinging in the branches between the dark sky and the horizon,
And, she dared me to open my eyes.
When I did the moonlight had changed everything,
But, I am still dreaming.
Wind chimes were solemn and prolonged,
Polished bronze,
Never quite stopping,
A hyper real undertone,
Intense strings of silver vibrations,
Building,
Reverberating and affecting everyone,
Flowing into the vacuum of the electric field,
Into the empty air,
Music of increasing complexity,
Strings tied to the breezes,
Webs tied to the stars,
Nets tied to the cosmic consciousness,
My breath tied to the expanding nebulae.

All of the owls are talking about it.
The curves of the smooth, white flowers,
Are following the moon,
And, tonight the moon is riding high,
In the middle of the sky,
Wearing a lavender halo.
Wisteria flowers behind her ear.

All of the moths and the spotted beetles are talking about it.
Everyone else has closed their eyes.
The unknown has grown,
Is growing, no one knowing,
Where are we going?
Be careful when you open the door.
You don’t want to do that anymore.

Do you want the moonlight to come in?
To bring mysteries and speculations,
Explanations outside of reality?
Would you invite a cloud?
Smoke of an unknown origin?
A nightmare?
Do you want a ghost?
Would you let a rocking chair rock with no one in it?
Walk under a ladder?
Spit at a black cat who has crossed your path?

Do you want to invite in an alien from a parallel universe?
A ferocious force field you don’t understand?
An unexpected time continuum?
A comet from beyond the solar system?
A demon from a Medieval carnival,
With cloven feet and a jesters hat?

Do you want the uncomfortable,
The uncertain,
The uncaring,
The uncontrollable,
The unconscious,
The limbic spirit,
Ready to do anything to survive,
Anything to thrive,
Anything to keep up,
Anything to get ahead,
Free to come and go?
Free as you and me?
Any time?

The moon has grown restless and wild,
And, is trying to claw her way out of the sky.
She is bigger than a dragon’s eye.
The blue hands of the nebulae are reaching out,
Arching, aching, shaking, earth quaking, breath taking,
Embers raking,
What have we been making?
A way out, a way in. A new way to begin again?
Scratching, searching for windows and worm holes,
For protections,
For directions,
For catastrophic detections,
For chaos and confusion, contagion,
And, for the stones,
Which mark the centers of the cities and souls,
And, the seats of power.

I am swinging in the branches of the mahogany,
Under the blue shadows,
Between the dark sky and the horizon,
Affecting everyone.
Getting ready to wake up.
The curves of the smooth, white flowers,
Are following the wind chimes.
Still, the moon refuses to let go,
And, so do I.
All of the cicadas are talking about it.

Soon, I will open my eyes,
And, the dawn will wash me,
And, will, as always, wash also the moon,
As clean and as clear as a silver spoon.

Stirring Leaves

I am sitting in a still room,
A fallen leaf,
Already dead,
In my lap.
I am reliving memories,
Which are not mine.

Insignificant leaf,
A lifetime of only one season,
From a tree two hundred years old.
One of a hundred thousand leaves,
No two the same,
Each with a thousand memories,
Remembering the one with the most light.

No one was expecting a memorial.
Certainly not the leaf.
The leaf no longer cares.
The tree is not shedding any tears.

I have a paintbrush and I have a hand with which to paint.
Time is not threatening me.
There is a place which is full of leaves,
Littered with leaves, leaf litter,
Paint and glue and sometimes glitter.
Inside a tiny, shiny box, inside the spider’s web.
Click here to visit other leaves,” the little spider said.
A wink and a trial. Go the extra mile.
A smile is the only thing worth while.

Am I the only one who knows,
That nothing that’s here is going to last,
And, soon there’ll be nothing left but the past?

Time Travelers

Time travelers,
Let’s synchronize.
Close your eyes.
Reset.
Preset.
Don’t get upset.
Just go back.
Stay on track.
So, much easier than going into all the possible futures.
Maybe we’ll try that next time.
Anyway,
Yesterday.
And, the day before.
And, many more.
Back so far you can’t remember.
Back to the beginning.

A thousand years ago.
I don’t even know what people are saying.
Even people who say they speak English.
But, I understand human nature.
And, I understand the birds.
They have not changed.
They understand me because I sing without words.
They think I am the village idiot but,
They don’t dislike me because music soothes even the savage beast.

Three thousand years ago,
We are trying to make paper.
You can write on a leaf but,
Leaves don’t last.
They fall apart in the time capsule before the future ever arrives.
All too quick.
Still, things are where they should be.
The fish still swim,
And, the flowers bloom.

Forty thousand years ago,
We are painting on the walls of caves,
And, the aliens are here,
Mining gold,
And, playing around with our DNA.
They eye me with suspicion.
I sit around the campfire and try to act like everyone else, counting my toes.
The plums taste like plums.

Two million years ago,
Lucy is foraging.
The weather is unpredictable.
The land is not where it was in the future,
And, the only thing I understand is the wind.
I do not want to go back further,
Because I am only human.

If you don’t mind going further back than that,
I’m still a little curious and wouldn’t mind a chat.
I could meet up with you at:
Time Travelers next meeting will be held on
Wednesday of last week at 7 pm.

Mountains and Stones

I speak to mountains,
And, have conversations with stones,
Although this isn’t as easy as you might think,
Because, we have to speak,
In a different temporal continuum.

We talk about sizes and shapes.
We speak of temperature conduction,
Molecular construction, gravity,
And, internal crystalline geometry.
We chat about atomic structure and astronomical design,
Expansion, contraction, density,
Texture, space and weight,
About volume and viscosity,
About force fields and reverberations,
And, about the nature of waves.

We never talk about eternal life,
Love or poetry,
Dreams or even time travel.
For that I have to wait and speak to the flowers,
Who understand romance and flight,
Pheromones and symphonic composition.

The stones tell me,
When the earth was slapped by the moon,
Perhaps just rough housing around,
Perhaps in a jealous rage,
The earth got piqued,
And, with fight-back “I’ll show you” energy,
Set about more magic,
Than was ever before conceived.
Then all of our symmetry was altered,
And, everything became a possibility.

The stones want to know if we appreciate,
The nearly impossible underlying precision,
And, the unending, multiple coincidences of the universe.

I ask them,
About the ice ages,
About the magnetism of the North Pole,
About particle entanglement,
The proportion of space to matter in atoms,
And, why it is that everything can be reduced to mathematics.

They never really answer my questions.
Instead, they complain because,
We are always moving forward,
With great regard to the future,
While the wisdom of the past,
Is swallowed up in the irretrievable gravity sink,
Of our DNA and our dismembered memories,
Snaps at our ankles,
Crumbles into sinkholes and quicksand,
And, creates the karmic weather.

To NYC and Back

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“Improbable Paradise” Digital Art – Photo Art – 9/11/2018

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