Frank Cebulski - Humans have always wanted to make a useless thing.
Indifferently as Stars Cast Forth
Cosmic Sonnet
Indifferently as stars cast forth their light
To distant galaxies in timeless warp of space
Even to endless involutions bright
Of the dark margins of the universe,
To cold planets, icy moons, and the dead
Matter of primal time and origin,
My faintly illumined thoughts of you traverse
The dark reaches of my mind and region
Of timebound memory, rare quanta bred
Of all sensa the scintillating trace
Of my extinct imagination, whose inverse
Proportion of gravitational dread
Pulls me reluctantly to your starry legion—
Dark matter that will never come to light.
The Floral Art
To Julie on Our Anniversary
Who would have thought this garden would have grown
So elaborate, with sweet fragrant herbs,
Aromatic blooms, roses of every known
Variety, colors of such mix to disturb
The quiet mind and excite the heart’s own
Substantiality, where even curbs
That border and contain newly wild blown
Seedpods unite the pathways in superb
Configuration of the floral art.
Here I have watched you for twenty years work
With trowel, shears, and hoe, tending with glove
And patience the tender crops, the sweet dark
Earth and sharp bitter thorns you hold with love
To protect your hands and secure my heart.
Déesse Entretenue
   Judy Martin Meyer
How I shall miss the brilliance of your days,
Your bright laughter, the blue vivacity
Of your eyes, your smile, quick velocity
Of temper when you disapproved of ways
You would not accept or understand, ways
I often exposed for the audacity
Of your vexation, dark ferocity
Of your tight reaction; taut body, gaze
That darted dangerously in a maze
Of attack and retreat, like the short flick
Of a doe’s tail, when she, ready to run
At the next threat or provocation, stays
Poised yet to hold cover and avoid the gun:
So you and she shall ever be more quick.
Language Lesson
Walking with my father down elm-lined street
Of our neighborhood in steel-locked Pueblo,
Colorado—true melting pot, hot sweat
Of labor, smelter, pig-iron, steam from low,
Bent backs of emigrant workers—was sweet
Linguistic voyage with exotic stow-
Aways we meet along the way, who greet
Us in their mother tongue in prideful show.
He spoke twelve languages and dialects,
To each his native tongue, as I watch, stand
By crazed wife beater, vicious drunken licks,
“Was he German, Dad”? “No, son, Austrian.”
Listen in awe to clasp this verbal mix,
The thick finger of his rough, heavy hand.
                                   © 2006-2008 Frank Cebulski
Proteus: An Account of the Sea
Aux metamorphoses des choses caresseės
A damp lip of wet sand lifts against a bone.
A sea map in a swirl bats about a tufted grey feather.
A shell's sliver, pearl husked, scrapes a brusque stone.
A brace of kites brace against the wind in weather.
A pink stone incommunicato creeps among kelp web.
A twist of stick a journey takes in dark sand.
A piper darts, starts, turns, stabs at the new ebb.
A lace of paper flowers the water at the end of the land.
A line a line a line of pelicans delays the fast wave.
A blue of sea a pattern plaits among wisp foam.
A small wind a corner takes a circle makes a sea cave.
A bend of grass an arch turns from crisp sand to sea loam.
         A gull struts, halts, hunches in a slow wedge.
         Indocile, three dogs leap at the foam's edge.
Sonnet V from Mediterreanean Sonnets
© 1988 Frank Cebulski
Achilles spun into his life at death,
     The only deed he truly knew the last
     He could not undo: a whirlwind fast
Against the writhing day he shook his breath
Into a dust at Troy.  Why bother death
     With such as he, whose story Homer cast
     Into the sieve of time to drop him past
Identity into the daimon sheath
Of dead appearance with imagined act.
     In the scaly corner of several walls
          Ash basking lizards flit against charred man's
Revery:  "Even they know more by pact
     With hugging earth to remake lost falls
          Than I a promise to myself my hands."
Sonnet XXXVI from Mediterreanean Sonnets                                                                             © 1988 Frank Cebulski                         
Rustic by Glade Light
In russet seclusion, rustic by glade-
light, I, overenamored by bough bend,
by leaflight, jade look longing to eye-rend
you, your visage inpouring, that green shade,
that blue moss, my leopard bower invade;
as cover then your eyes as foliage blend,
my covey in circlet brightened to fend,
friendly, fiercely, from all darkening raid.
Sometimes dark I am discovered, and you
hovered as haven fair natural face
fast love's wild retreat to sheltering lair;
sometime azured by your eyes, false found, who,
hidden in fear, fears time's fear, love's true pace,
whose ferreting gaze all blood natures bare.
Sonnet LI from Mediterreanean Sonnets                       
© 1988 Frank Cebulski
The Sons of Canaan from Sidon
(The Phoenician Discovery of the Amazon)
We, the Sons of Canaan from Sidon, set
Sail with full hope, the flower in our mouth,
Blossoming like many tongues Holy Seth
The lotus of energy steers south
To regions in the stone of memory.
For Pharoah Necho round the land of Ham
We rowed for the Pillars of Hercules,
From deepest Egypt, sacred to Amon.
Rose on our right the orchidean sun
We daily blest, but unmindful Ba'al cast
Us out, bounded by deep-swirling Ocean.
Strange dolphins sneeze in the grey, wide waters
Of this river. Nature drips from her trees.
In great beauty of bounty we are lost.
Sonnet LXXVII from Mediterreanean Sonnets                       
© 1988 Frank Cebulski