poetry

Nights with My Venice Knight. {poetry}

 

The world was my playground
when I discovered Venice nights
My essence was the perfection
I found in my Venice knight

Soaring through the sky each
Friday night
Seattle to L.A.
Praying for the jet to quickly take me away
Landing in humid, musty, smoggy L.A. air
The most intoxicating fragrance I have ever
chosen to wear

Then at last, pulled into his arms, pressed hard to his mouth
Where I had been had no meaning
He was my love, my life
He took my breath away
My heart was his from the first Venice night
My love — he was the first
My love — I think the last

He cradled me deep into the core of passion that defined
our Venice nights
sailing, flying, twisting and touching the stars
Where is my Venice knight?

Being us, basking and baking, being naked and free on the
blanket of sand we called home
We were young and lean and beautiful
drifting in and out of the ocean
then back to each other
hotter than the ball of fire in the sky, changing the color of our skin

Eventually our weary bodies found home again
dripping with the elements of the day
but that never stopped us from devouring each other
in every possible way

Where is my Venice knight?
The most wild and gentle lover I have ever known
Sometimes he played guitar to my soul
Time held no meaning as long as
our laughter mingled at the same second
and vibrated throughout the universe
We gave each other energy
mouth to mouth
soul to soul
Drank Irish coffee
until we buzzed
then made love until the sun reminded us
there was life beyond our Venice night

Peering into the eyes of the old men
on the Venice boardwalk
I knew they would never be bored
All day they were entertained
by sights and sounds and sexy young girls like me
I could end my days here
With my Venice knight at my side

We began a journey
winding our way along the magic of the California Coast
Heading north, stopping at every beach that beckoned to us
He was not ready — not sure about love ever after
We fought
I cried — almost to death — on the sand in Ventura
terrified of losing him, trying to gather pieces of my shattered heart
He held me until I could breathe again
He told me we should keep going — together
and return later to our Venice nights

Where is my indecisive Venice knight?
He cooled my skin with lotion
triggering every nerve ending
smiling as he watched me climb and rocket
then soar with me
until we landed
to dream of Venice nights

He held my hand tightly
and said he had never seen my eyes so alive
as we ran through the bright, sparkling night
of San Francisco
The pulse of the city penetrated all of my senses
He knew of secret places
back alley, upstairs, hidden Chinese restaurant
the perfect room for two
the wharf
the park
the zoo
a cable car ride to Timbuktu
margarita shots until we fell uphill
We danced the dance of mating
With a thousand miles between us
Each weekend, flying back into his arms
then plummeting away from him
again and again

We took Hawaii by storm
all of the islands
and parts of the moon
touched by the potent, tropical mystery
I begged for time to stand still

We splashed beneath a waterfall in the grottoes of Kauai
got high with new friends and saw vibrant rainbows
made love on the lanai on Maui
while tourists walked by
The sound of crashing waves was our power

We ventured out and beyond our Venice nights
Building a life on wings
New Zealand, Mazatlán, Cancun, London, Paris, Bora Bora, Fiji
Counting stars at 3:00 am, mesmerized by
the power of the Tahitian sky

So many lonely nights
too many weekend flights
One day I heard him say,
Please come here — move to Venice — and never go away

We slept, intertwined, the day I turned 21
We missed midnight
but made up for it
before being caught by the morning sun

He tried to explain,
Please, give me time
It’s hard for me to let go of the past
Until I do, I cannot promise a tomorrow
He said,
I love you — please stay
Believe me when I tell you it won’t always be this way

He kept his promise
and we started a new life
we moved to San Jose as husband and wife

If I live to be 100
my heart will be heavy with regret
my naiveté enveloped me
I wanted a new, fast-lane, seductive, high-tech life
I became distant and cold
The center of my world tossed about
recklessly by me
sabotaging the most perfect happiness
for a dream that did not exist

My Venice knight
did not see
I was drowning in my own self-destruction
Why did he not save me from the demons pulling me away?
Why didn’t I beg him
to do anything to make me stay?

One day I just closed my eyes from the sounds and sights
of every perfect moment of every perfect
Venice night

There has never been a doubt
That he is my one true love, soul to my soul
I have never stopped trying to find someone
to fill the void
make the pain disappear
or analyze my fate

Knowing that my knight still held my heart
I became another’s wife
and just like that
stepped right into the wrong person’s life

I may never have the answers
but I’ve seen the glaring light
always and forever
I will love my Venice knight

After 25 long years
my heart stopped when I answered a call
my Venice knight found me in Seattle
from a phone booth in a Starbucks café
It took a while before I understood
he forgave me, without doubt
My tears told him the story of why I blindly walked away

Memories last forever
when the heart is perfectly right
The pain of leaving my one true love
will never fade
nor will my Venice knight

And now it’s been an eternity
one might think the pain has gone away
I still love him heart and soul
I mourn the reality that way back then
I made the worst choice of my life
when I decided not to stay

My knight returns again and again
in dreams that feel so true
I carry them with me night and day
and know what I want to do

Rewrite history
ask for a miracle
become one with him and say,
We’re together again
this time forever
Nothing will ever take our nights away.

***

Smitten by the lyrics and poetry of the sixties, especially Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell, Debi Cooper holds a great love and purpose for expressing herself through words. She is inspired by love, beauty, compassion, exhilarating new adventures and ideas, people who make a significant difference in the world, and the beauty of the Left Coast. Like many poets, artists, musicians, Debi is moved by everyday experiences: becoming a mother, seeing the world through the eyes of tiny humans, embracing their discoveries and development as they segue into the world with fierce independence. Recently, her passion has been focused on the political climate in our country. During daily disbelief and often fear, she looks for the beauty that surrounds her, contributing to significant change, humanity the people who sustain and encourage her and love that transcends the darkest days. Whether struggling with a challenging childhood, participating in a life-changing protest, falling in or out of love, sharing matters. In words, song, art. Being open to the kaleidoscope of living — in all hues and possibilities — is the genesis of Debi’s artistic expression.

***

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