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The Shallow Sea

Poetry and Verse

A writer of lyrics, both musical and poetic, Daniel Haskin bares his soul in “Amnesia” as he cuts through cultural boundaries and stimulates feelings that cannot be denied. 

From the Book

Murderous Days

(In memory of John F. Haskin)

I remember you
When the wind was soft
And the summer floated
Down like scurrying dogs

Baring their slick teeth
Slow velvet wet mouths
Oozing shapelessly
Singing deep anvils of love

My aged hand now falls
To touch your panic dream
Always the same hand-in-hand
Motion that may break me dream

And I believed you
Swallowing your afflicted words
That the dying and deadly
Will make it all right tonight

I don’t want to leave
Like your passing clouds
Pushed hard by the wind
Blown by crimson quivered lips

Those murderous days
Of chilled suicide
Now preach quietly
Sometimes in CAPS

Sometimes I can’t hear
But time is getting shorter
And summer still floats
Like an obituary

Death is an Anachronism

When I am taken
My old life illustrated
Will go on and on
Drawing delicate
and awkward colors
Washing away the sparkle

Imprinted on this
White cadaver sheet
Deep in my mantle
I am now Ophelia
Willing to drown in the brook
And leave it all to chaos

Or, to scrawl on paper
That I know I will leave blank
I think of the primal poets
The dark suicide poets
That left it all to the wind
Leaving their shadows

To firm and hard darkness
Once witnessed and burnt
Then cast in concrete and vine
Their words devolving
Punctuation dissolving
With one swift red kiss

Self-Portrait with Rothko

(A meditation on the painting “Orange and Yellow, 1956”)

My eyes are illuminated yellow dusk.
My body is born of irradiated
orange sung from within my ambient
mistress, luminescence.

I am stillness, passion, and
forgetfulness is my plane of existence.
My voice is your séance. It speaks to
you from my minimal mother.

My body emanates loves primal mist
and my mother is the arc of creation
that overwhelms me in this vibration
of consecration.

She is the weakness and frailty that
binds me two as one. Her wind that
settles around me is a colorless breeze
of auras and haunted static.

Floating on a sea of projection, nature,
nurture. My god is the god of purity
and decadence. Two as one.
Two as one.

Self-Portrait with Blake

A meditation on “The Dance of Albion” (1795)

My body was born from infernal
metal, made man. Bone black and
madder lake, vermilion, yellow ocher,
and Prussian blues. Beyond all this I
will die for you, and I am glad for it.

My arms stay splaying, outstretched as
a dancing Leonardo, I sing from my
spire flailing like a tarot fool. A
bastard angel. I am the invention of
zero, burning in my holy place,

I am the little creator and my
happiness is immense. Beneath the
starlight the sun radiates my joy. I
have no pretense of mind. I bray to
the wind from god’s symmetry

Of Wind and Wings

She is lost stillness
Like a bound blackbird in death

Who flutters silent
Torn and defeathered

Beating wings against the heat
Of her loves night cage

To now dream of wind
Inside this triage of souls

Her beloved awaits
Winding in the sky

Like a litany of love
Of love and a birds frailty

Drifting like water
Alone the heart beats

Beneath the river running
Shallow is the sea

Fire Fly

I mistake you
For a god
As you flit along
The murmuring
Rhythm of wind

Your fire is now
Twists of lightning
Bespell the darkness
Throughout the trees

Winded in rain
One thousand
Cloudless Pinhole stars
Burn and resonate
Calm I have you

Within my hand
You now sleep
With not enough spells
Left to paint the sky
‘Til you awake

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