These days
On silver knots
Are a long and tangled
Mess

Precious
As they are brilliant
Across long
And shimmering lines

Where threads
Get snarled by fear
From the hooks
We always carry

Catching lives
Mistaken
For dreams once thought
Our own –

That sudden pain
Unseen
Or breath which
Barely seizes

What air
Has cost us greatly
Just speaking truth
Out loud

While wasting time
With dread
So feelings
Pass discretely

And bliss
Of captive moments
Eludes this choice
We make

To remain content
Near death
At the brink
Of heaven’s waiting

When faith
Has quiet answers
For questions
Too damn bold

Our troubled souls
Predict
Through pain
Perceived as needed

In bodies
Fallen victim
Growing old
Not staying still,

Losing semblance
Of their faith
Along meaning
Once unraveled

After sinning
Without reason
Besides hoping
They come loose.

– J. Pigno

There is no
Human affliction
That a loving heart
Can’t save
From chains
Of thankless suffering
Or bondage tied
With dread

Like chairs
Which have us fixed
To the ground whose dreams
Keep moving
Though legs
Are hardly needed
For escaping
What stays clinched

If fear
Takes second place
When falling down
Means standing
And flying high
Has purpose
Just inches
Off this dirt

Despite how eyes
May stare
Where crowds alone
Will gather
To admonish those
Whose triumph
Is one foot
Out their door

Or fingers
Pressing keys
So speaking clear
Can manage
What thoughts
They long to translate
By freedoms
Within grasp

Abiding loss
Through trust
Obliging hurt
While learning
All hope
Is sheer persistence
In achieving
Purest faith-

Teaching lives
They cross
Yet touch
Without us knowing
Their gifts
Have lifted angels
And conquered
Demons whole

Beyond
Such burdened means
Like baggage
Sitting heavy
On the backs
Of sainted neighbors
Revealing God
Next door.

– J. Pigno

Sometimes
This empty page
Is the only ear
Which listens
When a voice
Grows coarse
And desperate
From years
Of being unheard

Still yelling
That withered plea
Through verse
Not hardly spoken
But written
Down
In context
On margins
Missing their lines,

Like the kind
Our lives define
By an absent rule
Or meaning
Left hanging there

For emphasis

To denote
What space
Exists

By virtue
Of losing faith
At the cost
These phrases carry,

Each one
A subtle murder,

Each pain
Dramatic
Pause –

Where proof
Is feeling numb
Beyond such bold
Descriptions
Despite
How words
Show pictures
Expressed
Without consent.

Those lifetimes
Between terms
Are God’s
Disgusted grammar,

His book
Of violations
Lost among
Each sentence
Told

Dealing judgments
So unfair
As what blankness
Carries vaguely

These obscene
And pale
Emotions

Called expression
Left behind.

– J. Pigno

I wouldn’t trust
Your doctor
Or a man who says
He knows
Like some god
Whose test is failure
For the chance
Of rare success

From prayers
Not often answered
By caplets
Swallowed weakly
In mouths
With spoiled senses
Where silence
Dulls their taste

To ensure
Such little faith
Within these souls
Left desperate
At the hands of lies
Transparent
As one pill
Which fixes fast

What pasts
Are left unsettled
And dreams
Still barely noticed
When truth
Is an absent footnote
On studies
Peer-reviewed

While theory
Holds no weight
If pain
Empirically proven
Drives our science
Hopeful
Without its need
For proof

Believing numbers
Yield
To realities
Unexpected
Being glorious
Tools of heaven
Through each change
Ambition makes.

– J. Pigno

I’d do anything
Not to write
Or face these thoughts
Which linger
At the back of my mind
Complacent
When avoiding fears
Untold

On a whim of speech
I’ve chased
In haste
From feeling lazy
And pursuing words
Indecent
As these truths
Made insincere

During bouts
My silence breaks
Left alone
Where phrases envy
All this damage
Sitting pretty
Within lines
I cannot seize

Like expressions
Wearing thin
Findings holes
Instead of bridges
Losing answers
Down their crevice
That extends
Towards quiet death

Leaving bones
So far beneath
Highest ground
Of said intention
Marking sand
With failed exposure
To reveal
My deepest self

Passing ribs
And rotted flesh
Among rocks
Which hide my carcass
Empty now
Of bloody meaning
From such art
This desert claims.

Down its gap
I’ve finally
Fallen;

Just a skeleton
I’ve become.

– J. Pigno

This quiet
And tired gray
Whispers rain
From boredom
Beneath what veil
Can answer
In the dark
Of lingering clouds

Which fail
As listless veins
Whose fallen blood
Translucent
Denotes our pleasures
Missing
Behind that sun
Obscured

Where daylight
Measures fate
With proof of life
Uncertain
Still hiding now
Among us
Between these hours
Pale

Lost like
Private stars
Shining hope
Through freedom
Unknown to those
Who seek them
But bright
If felt for sure

When mapping
Empty skies
Dim from lacking
Purpose
Yet streaked across
Their vastness
Concealing God
Within

Masking
Heaven’s place
Amid these downpours
Heavy
While tears
Bring revelations
On afternoons
So bleak.

– J. Pigno

Our heartbeat
Takes for granted
Each breath
We dare to take
As exhales
Softly wasting
Their miracle
Pushed from lungs

Expelled
With gentle grace
While the moment
Pauses briefly
To assure us
Time is fleeting
When denied
That second wind –

This fate
We often chance
Like tomorrow
Hardly waiting
For these lives
Which soon diminish
Through expending
Too much air

Or exhausting
What remains
Near an end
Not always chosen
But denied
In sudden beauty
By one swift
Yet tragic kick

We proclaim
Has stolen fate
Though it’s God
Who’s merely vanquished
All our foes
Before they surfaced
Without battles
Long and sick

Tasting glory
From that source
Where those gasps
Of sweetest ether
Linger lightly
On our palettes
Tasting heaven
As we pass

Drinking wine
No man can claim
Is replacement
For each instant
Wasted soreley
Seeking pleasure
Left abandoned
By design

Trading wind
And beating pulse
Losing blood
Despite their effort
To sustain
What wishful thinking
Keeps them dreaming
During death.

– J. Pigno