There is no truth
I can face
Other than having
Misgivings
About this faith
Getting ruined
By appropriate thoughts
Feeling sick –

These crippling nerves
Always touched

And raw from blows
Being traded

During lifelong bouts
Against symptoms
Still swinging each punch
Under belts,

As sinister hands
Find their groove
When pummeling souls
Needing respite,

Battering wills
Weakly breathing
After doubtful lungs
Take abuse.

My belief
Is constantly torn
Between fighting God
Or His errors,

Worried since death
Means confronting
Sins man makes
Losing trust

In despicable needs
Nature yields
Proving selfish ways
Offer safeties
No deity’s plan
Could imagine
If love were the reason
It cared.

Perhaps such rage
Can confirm
How survival works
While existing –

Hating how heaven
Just watches,

But knowing that fear
Provides grace.

  • J. Pigno

Danielle rests
By my side,

Her hastening breaths
Making echoes,

Off the ceiling
Now covered with shadows
Our dimly lit room
Still reveals

Come mornings
Both hands are entwined

Leaving sweat
Where space used to linger

When I was alone
Chasing specters
Off reflections
That TV projects –

Some shows which
Got me through nights
Finding this heart
Far too heavy,

Beating so fast
There were instruments
Kept at all times
Near my bed,

For once measuring
Symptoms of loss
While watching cartoons
Play on silent

And hearing those sounds
From dreamt terrors
Bleed into days
Hardly real.

Being married
Has offered no cure,

Always swearing these fears
Create figures

Just dancing on walls
While we lay there
Like parallel lives
Taking shape

During moments
Forgetting time’s passed
Between memories
Reminding me often
How loneliness
Waits beyond visions
Anxieties wish
Weren’t true –

Only noticed
If she falls asleep,

Since watching such forms
Never witnessed
Means thinking their world
Housing darkness
Has tainted what light
Love can grant.

God protects us
Under warm sheets,

Building faith
Despite pain’s reappearance,

Worrying less
After learning
Even phantoms revere
Certain vows.

  • J. Pigno

There are nightmares
Too gorgeous for sleep
Which bleed into
Nervous daydreams
My mind will encounter
If wandering
Around those thoughts
I can taste

Like memories
Caught on this tongue
After rainfalls
Made from her teardrops
She sheds off clouds
In my bedroom
Knowing soon
I will open that mouth

To proclaim those lives
Never gone
Before savoring
Beautiful losses
Still showing those reels
Now projected
Behind both eyes
Open wide

Where old films play
Without sounds
But our senses
Trace every moment
Each experience had
Left impressions
Whether smells
Or sickening warmth

Those painful words
Become lines
Over tunes unheard
Missing lyrics
An open wound veils
Beneath crimson
Hiding melodies
Made from their scars

Envisioning pasts
Beyond touch
Such traumatic love
Sweetly torments
During liturgies
Writing these poems
Feeling phantoms
Tug at my pen.

  • J. Pigno

Tonight
This window is cracked
So the passing winds
Which keep blowing
Across tired streets
Can remind me
That life still exists
During sleep

In a room
Only lighted by screens

Whether phones
Or movies on silent

Left playing
For reasons uncertain
Other than fearing
My pulse,

And taking it
Numerous times

Though trying real hard
To stay focused

Beyond symptoms
Keeping things stirring
Like updates
Speaking of war

Such darkness
Eerily states
When flashed across
Silent devices
Between fingers
Fumbling keyboards
Searching out news
Always bad –

Still nervously
Pacing these floors
Dragging both feet
Along carpet,

Just fearing that death
Soon expected
While missiles
Explode overseas

Since heartbeats
Echo those drums
Declaring disputes
More erratic
Than peacefulness
Ravaged internally
I am scared
Will never return.

  • J. Pigno

Dani,
Please take them away –

These feelings which
Persist into nausea,

Sweet nothingness
Swelling like vomit
In the pit of this chest
Losing air.

Find me relief
If you will,

One doctor whose words
Aren’t judgment –

Another day out
Without worry,

Not time spent
Further apart,

To keep smiling
Under those masks
For the sake of our vow
Always tested
During eras consumed
By pure evil
And symptoms my mind
Can’t control.

Or is it my heart
Skipping beats?

My lungs missing breath
Without answers?

Are these ailments real
Beyond fearing
That end which looms
For us all?

My life is now raw
To the touch,

But your own
Can save it from burning,

By applying that love
God has given,

Still believing
All grief is a cure.

I must kiss you
Now while I can,
So remind me
By laying down gently –

Next to me
Adjacent as always,

Before our world
Grew insane.

  • J. Pigno

I pull at this
Tangling thread,

Like a line which
Slowly unravels,

And believe each edge
To be different

Despite knowing
That string is the same –

An imbalance
Perceived by deceit
My abrasive thoughts
Keep repeating

How sandpaper rubs
Against metal
While withering down
Over time,

With lopsided views
From one end
Through tightening knots
I’ve imagined
Behind choking eyes
Falling victim
To tears they cough
Losing grip.

These matters
No mind should endure
Make sense
Around fleeting obsessions,

Arrogant needs
Loosely settled
When fixating long
Under lights –

Following threats
So benign
Even tethered hearts
Never notice
Those ropes between hands
Making gestures
Just begging their help
As we pick

In mirrors
Still seeing mistakes,

Arguing truth
Has its questions,

If flaws must show
Despite trying

Almost everything wrong
For relief.

  • J. Pigno

Every deed
We witness in daylight
Has counterparts
Equally shadowed

And incentives
Dancing like spiders
From projections
Selfishly shaped

During nights
Spent gloating alone
Behind closed doors
Always working

Where walls see curves
Without question
Across empty space
Filling cracks –

Such darkened lines
Taking form
When sins themselves
Lacking filter

Draw souls
Defined by obsession
Over broken lies
Need creates.

These villains
Believing success
Tout sickness
They call motivation,

Taught all their lives
Through example
Trusting promises
Borrowed on fear

Though never fulfilled
While aware
Or trying so hard
There is meaning

Despite learning
Fixations will murder
Any moral
Worth trusting before.

Real heroes
Don’t get those rewards
Yet innately know
They must suffer,

Just wasting this time
For experience
Among God’s gifts
Truly free –

An unsaid grace
Breath implies
Beneath quiet skies
Sharing whispers,

Telling awesome tales
About rescues
Along bumpy roads
Faith agrees

Keeps worship
Appropriately placed
Between humble trails
Often taken –

Rarely mocked
Since public exposure
Appears tougher
Than obscurity shares.

  • J. Pigno

There is an absence
Fear cannot fathom
Until that hole
Gets torn open,

When the space itself
Becomes meaning
And emptiness
Assures you of faith –

A heaven in loss
Merely waiting
After hope falls through
Chasing freedom,

Like wishes fulfilled
Despite failure
To determine today
As some gift

Or God’s bad dream
Always playing
Behind those eyes
Missing chances

For surrendering sleep
Wasting nightmares
Divinely instilled
By that fate.

Our choice
Finds agony ripe
On vines long hung
Over pleasure,

With nothing at stake
Beyond living
Among lazier souls
Left at home –

Those saddened minds
Taking breaks
Between phone calls
Friends never answer,

Drawing peace
While exhaling such anguish
Through breaths so short
From unrest

Upon pages blank
Needing pictures
Where memories
Assemble their puzzle

Across margins
Poems should bury
Beneath blotted truths
Disarranged.

These words
Are messy relief
Yielding solace
Veiled amid clutter,

Seeking company
Dead despite speaking
Off immortal lines
Believed flawed –

All lonely liars
Descend
Ink’s shadowy pit
Hiding mirrors,

Since reflections
Offer them purpose
Being idle
Yet oddly engaged.

  • J. Pigno

We avoided
The runaway rains
Which poured down hills
Over sidewalks

Collecting in pools
Below houses
Where foundations sank
Underground,

As their deluge drowned
Every remnant
Those cellars hid
Beneath footsteps

Of lives long past
Getting muddied
And swallowing tears
God had shed –

Like ships on land
Overturned
When artifacts lost
Become relics,

Knowing basements hold
Filling memories
With waters
Darkened from sin.

Our legacies
Will never preserve
What nature’s wrath
Has deemed frivolous –

Random objects
Strewn among puddles,
Now sentimental junk
Gone to waste.

I can’t escape
Being submerged,
Only knowing
How time sinks slowly,

Always learning
Escape is impossible
While watching
My past out at sea.

So belief
Through disastrous fate
Means uncovering clocks
Found broken –

Behind glass
Hope completely shattered,
Stopped for good
After surges subside.

  • J. Pigno

I believe this plan
Is intended
To break our world
Farther apart,

Allowing fears
Now accepted
As an ordinary pain
We must face –

Avoidable death
Giving warnings
Despite policies
Inching us closer,

A strategy made
From neglecting
What normalcy
Meant all along.

That’s how leaders
Persuade,
Following trends
Which will teeter

On uneven points
Tipping over
Into open holes
We could fill.

It’s obscene
Though easily fixed,
Often failed
Yet rarely attempted

Since ignorance
Offers such excess
Taught like prayers
In their schools –

The answer
Was never relief
But falling down
When we notice

Earth swaying
Still getting things dizzy,
Always ready
For another decline.

Business exploits
Every angle
Where profits explode
Through obsession.

Progress implies
Little details
Of disasters born
From success.

  • J. Pigno