We are but poor passing fates,
that I could not love you any more
than I do right now.
For  I know of nothing in this world
so sad—or so beautiful
as your branches heavy with rain.

Charles Coakley Simpson

California Dreamin’

tumblr_mh3wsxluN21r8825ko1_500California Dreamin’

Cali was a cute little suffer girl from Santa Ana.
She was about this tall, had a sweet laugh, great smile,
deliriously long caramel-colored hair,
and a nice little IM.

We liked to pretend we were in love.

She used to send me photos
of herself in the dressing room at the mall
with her iPhone while she was sitting in Physics class.

“There’s more where that came from,” she would wink.

She took me for a drive one night—
just her, her iPhone, and I.
We ended up out on the beach where
she lay me out bedside her on a blanket, flipped me open,
and began texting with a warm, seductive voice
into my ear.

I thought I was roaming.

“Touch me—here,” she teased.
And forwarded me a photo of the inside of her thigh.

I was all thumbs.

I moved my hand slowly up the inside of her LCD.
She giggled as I started caressing her Instagram application.

Do you love me?” She purred.

“I thought we were pretending.” I replied.

Charles Coakley Simpson





I get my therapy over the phone—
She pushes happy pills between cam shows.
“Take two of these
and call me in the morning…  Darlin’.”
I receive the anti-depressants
through the mail in a plain brown wrapper.
The sensation of silk
feels good against my naked skin,
but what I really needed—was a Valium.

Charles Coakley Simpson



Longing is the agony of the nearness of the distant. —  Martin Heidegger

The wind caresses me in the winter of the night with the nearness of the distant,
while memory wraps me, warmly, like a blanket of wool, with  the nearness of the distant.

Your eyes: grey stars , a pallor in the darkness that leads me through the absence,
a chiaroscuro, an unfolding of shadows, where I meet you in the nearness of the distant.

There, standing with the crows, your hair windswept with the color of the wheat,
I walk alongside you through the forest of the trees of moss in the nearness of the distant.

A great, golden spire ruses up out of the fog, and a snow lays lazily on rooftops.
A sea embraces a sleepy fishing village as my windmills turn in the nearness of the distant.

The wind caresses me in the winter of the night, and yet I hear the singing of bees.
I am the sparrow caged by the snow laden limbs of its tree, but  I will meet you—always,
In the nearness of the distant.

Charles Coakley Simpson





We carve a nest in the wheat behind your parent’s house and lay there at dusk waiting for the stars to fill the indigo void left by the setting sun speaking in half-whispers the tender sincerity of your words filling my head with the thought of what it would be like to kiss you pulling your hair gently behind your ear the Harvest moon shining softly on the nape of your neck your mother calling out for us in the darkness the cicadas singing their summer song from the shadows of the trees which line the river of my no return.

Charles Coakley Simpson



Single, solitary angel of wing
sifting softly, slowly sadly thou bring
Mine heart tumbling, trembling tragically down
As thou makes thy journey
To the ground.

Fleeting, frozen feather of white
Doest thine heart shine with the sun and light
That a cloud of high did set thee free
Hast thou fallen from the sky into the heart
Of me.

Wisps of whimsical wintry wind
Thou rides ‘round mine head as doest thou spin
Powdery kisses perfectly placed
The lilting of thy lace ‘pon
My face.

Touch, tease, tickle my nose
Lay ‘pon my tongue thy bittersweet ambrosia
For alas my endearments warm I fear
Are to leave me to be holding what ‘tis only thy

Charles Coakley Simpson






And yet not even the rose
knows  of  its beauty.
But simply how to be—a flower.

Charles Coakley Simpson

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