Pools of Promise

Three poems
by Nikki Anne Schmutz
Water Mark
Like a water mark
you sear the sky
forever changing
my landscape.
You leave me burning
in a bath of water
that doesn’t relieve.
What I thought was water
must be gasoline…
Maybe my mind
is so turned upside down
I don’t know the difference.
In this moment I wish
my heart was fireproof –
rid of insecurities
and strong in the magic I am.
Instead, tissues pile on the floor
evidence of the eruption
and aftermath of a spell
foolishly cast….
A Way
Your blue-eyed
pools of promise
drew me in.
Heavenly choirs sang
your arrival.
I knew in that moment
you were mine.
I revered the calling –
my role in our forever
was preordained
Or so I thought
The years wrought hurt
between smiles.
Barriers rose amid
expanse of possibilities –
hearts broken
as bread in offerings
to God.
Promises became weights,
concrete shoes of responsibility
in rivers of circumstance.
Swallowed water
filled lungs deeply.
Breath became impossible.
Hands reached out for a rescue
that never came.
shovels full of choices
buried hearts alive –
suffocating hope
in folds of wanderlust
Skies blackened,
stealing rays of sunlight.
Debts spilled over
cups of everyday,
dreams sought
were turned away –
left to wither
without sustenance.
Mouths open and close
in realization,
vocal chords tighten,
words drift away
in hopeless resignation
We are left
standing on opposite ends
of a vast canyon –
shouting words
we cannot understand
across the distance,
muffled syllables
carried away by the lonely
howl of wind
gusting in the silence.
Hearts once joined
now spend lonely moments
wishing time could be
by flowers scented
with boundless desire
and lips curved
in lofty kisses
at sunsets of enjoyment.
Instead my heart
clenches in anxiety.
My hope lies as a rug
on the floor of us –
walked over
time and time again
until I have had enough.
I don knitted wings
carefully handmade
aid to a planned escape.
I test them out,
unsure of flight,
and realize
my feet are solid enough
to carry me
exactly where I wish…
away from you.
Nikki Anne Schmutz is a published poet, novelist, produced screenwriter, freelance poetry editor, and author of Open Soul Window, In Speaking of… A Poetic Journey from Dark to Light, and Found, a novel. She reads poetry for her YouTube Channel, Perfectly Written Pictures and lives in Utah, USA.

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Scott Thomas Outlar hosts the site 17Numa.wordpress.com where links to his published poetry, fiction, essays, interviews, reviews, and books can be found. He is a Best of the Net and three-time Pushcart Prize nominee. Scott's poetry books include: Songs of a Dissident (Transcendent Zero Press, 2015), Chaos Songs (Weasel Press, 2016), Happy Hour Hallelujah (CTU Publishing, 2016), and Poison in Paradise (Alien Buddha Press, 2017). Scott is a member of The Southern Collective Experience; he also serves as an editor for Walking Is Still Honest Press, The Blue Mountain Review, The Peregrine Muse, and Novelmasters.

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