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Joel L Young

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Watching Carnivals
by Joel L Young
Monday, September 15, 2003

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           >> View all 74

A poet watches a carnival of souls.

I'm an old timer and a child at heart
watching dwarves play with tarot cards
passing the time in a romantic interlude
with all passersby of women and men, brothers and sisters, strange magicians with dancing sticks
turn tents of wonder into marionette shows
to play for mass crowds who stare stone faced
at  3 D cardboard cutouts of a crowd
sitting in laughter, staring back at them.


I sit in my steel chair listening
to the barker tell his tales.
The bearded lady and the clairvoyant kiss
with their make up on, charming in their
coupling as man and wife
clowns serenade them;
 play violins with no sound.
Conjoined sisters dance and hum
to the silent symphony, and   
smile with the glow of a firefly's delight.


I sit at the wonder and look for reason
feel envious to join the party.
A freak to my own heart;
I hustle to catch the tie me downs
breaking from a tent
pound it back into the ground
with the might of a thin man;
unfold chairs for the faith healer
to come ease the torment in my mind.


I want to be released from my cage
as the man with the aluminum soul
who can be manipulated with a single touch
to reveal the empathy of all things.


Only the mime knows the true me.
She's never said a word
we talk in our dreams
ride ferris wheels by the sea,
and have made love beneath the willows
where Eden's garden follows the river
beyond purgatory's gate.


The night leaves me restless
I cannot sleep for I watch the carnival
and the evil and goodness of all souls.


 

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Reviewed by Sara Russell 3/19/2004
One of the best poems I've read here on AuthorsDen, or anywhere on the web. The last two stanzas, in particular, round this poem off beautifully, bringing it to a moving conclusion. It's brilliant, I love the poignant mood running through it...

Sara L. Russell
Editor, Poetry Life & Times
http://www.poetrylifeandtimes.com/current.html
Reviewed by anne cunningham 1/22/2004
"a freak to my own heart...." excellent line there.
Reviewed by Kate Clifford 9/15/2003
Soul touching write!
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