Monday, May 29, 2017

Poetry From Ex Marine and English Instructor Michael Seeger

Michael Seeger is a poet and educator residing in the Coachella Valley near Palm Springs, California. Prior to his life as a middle school English instructor, he worked as a technical writer for a baseball card company and served as a Marine infantry officer during Desert Storm.  He considers poetry a passion and writing generally a way of life. Michael’s poems have recently appeared in US poetry journals/publications like the Lummox Press, Better Than Starbucks, Anti-Heroin Chic, The Mindful Word and as finalists in several GoodReads contests. 

Closet Narcissist 

I want to know if I exist,
Not some simple aphorism;  
Am I a closet narcissist?  

Should I ask a pharmacist   
About this painful euphemism? 
I want to know if I exist.  

Or will it simply be dismissed;  
Labels are a barbarism.  
Am I a closet narcissist?  

It seems even the arsonist  
Eludes judgmentalism —  
But without the fire does he exist? 

How long will these symptoms persist  
Without causing a schism?  
I might be a closet narcissist  

Or is it simply Darwinistic, 
Or worse —existentialism?  
I want to know if I exist —    
I am a closet narcissist.

I Wait

It’s heavier here now 
Since you left.
Like a miracle; Wow! 
See: Bereft.

I have in my hand words 
From a book;
An empty sky holds birds 
As I look.

Slowly the past recedes, 
Emptied, as the mind reads 

Hardened understanding 
Changes us
In our views; Birds landing 
Make a fuss.

It’s dark where sunlight fell; 
You are late.
Silent as a cancer cell, 
I wait.

Sestina (Going Green)

There's something to be said for taking stairs 
instead of an elevator. Sometimes
life is seen from the bottom of a well;
for example, my blood pressure was high, 
again, at the doctor's this afternoon.
And I wasn't even one bit nervous;

At least, consciously. What makes me nervous 
is the thought that if I don't take the stairs
I may not live to see the afternoon
of my life. One has to take stock sometimes. 
I need to stop seeking the sugar high,
cut the caffeine, and eat vegetables. Well,

I'll try harder (I want to be well);
It's time to go green, which makes me nervous. 
And it's not just because the stakes are high,
or the taste is plain rotten; like the stairs 
I just gotta do it. There are some times
when confidence comes, like this afternoon:

It was like any other afternoon
except "green lunch" didn't go down too well. 
I try to branch out (going green sometimes), 
but can feel the stomach getting nervous 
outside my comfort zone; feel it downstairs 
in the gut (pain tolerance is not high

here). And nothing compares, so far, to the high 
sugar brings. Vegetables in the afternoon
can bring you down; and I mean down the stairs 
to desolation's despair. To feel well again,
I drove to McDonald's (and a nervous
drive it was getting there, too). Though sometimes

habits are hard to break (there are some times 
when I ask: What's the point? Then take the high 
road), the alternative makes me nervous.
So it's salad, again, by this afternoon 
for me (I know I'll get used to it. Well,
"bear's" a better word here). As for the stairs,

getting high (up stairs) ain't easy sometimes, 
but you get there. Well, by this afternoon.

These Roses

These roses make me write a poem, 
lightening the room by their sight 
and fragrant hold upon the night;
a graceful presence in our home.

I've noticed that one petal fell 
even though they're just cut fresh 
recalling the decay of flesh;
how evanescently we dwell.

Beyond the stipule their stems twist 
in a vase up on the countertop, 
soon another leaf will drop;
I know tomorrow they'll be missed.

We drink the moment then disappear 
like water through long rose stem-straws 
A rose's beauty gives one pause:
in life our death is always near.

Reality Is Rarely What It Seems

The waking hours devolve into daydreams 
while fantasy informs the afternoon; 
reality is rarely what it seems.

And one need not go to any extremes 
to perceive the truth of this; very soon
waking hours will devolve into daydreams.

Perception will drift to merge within schemes 
and plans materializing rough hewn;
reality is rarely what it seems.

The workday weighs down pulling at the seams 
of escapist hopes from which no one's immune; 
waking hours will devolve into daydreams.

Projections leap out to flow in thought streams 
that flood the mind then dissolve into ruin; 
reality is rarely what it seems.

Visions arise in animated memes
as thoughts appearing like mist are left strewn; 
the waking hours devolve into daydreams. 
Reality is rarely what it seems.

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