The Appeal of Cremation

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Photo by Lily Selthofner, 2016.

release into the smoke

ashy fiery flames

burn the same as ancient wood.

a rising phoenix

or a slow decompose

earthy wormey dirt

breaks down my baby bones.

an immortal transition

away from life’s debt

face melting, skin burning 

maggots fill the lily.

inhale, exhale, stop.

which to choose:

to fly or to rot.

Creek

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

A Small Crossing by Lily Selthofner

time, insurmountable and irrelevant

children, innocent and…We are love 

able, craving simple warmth in tumultuous weather…

sharp edges drawing silent blood.

a future with… a present without

I pour from a cup filled with riveting ocean waves

sending sprinkles from afar

with uncertainty, may we dive.

Washed Out

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Eastern Horizon by Lily Selthofner.

the same force that rolls waves upon the shore

sweetens breeze and echoes arial song

the backbone

brushes a woman’s dress as she walks

and screeches to her silent serenade

early ocean foam carries scavengers

little trinkets:

wind-washed seashells

casting little shadows in the late morning sun.

the waves ricochet

in fortune days

hiding empty messages from above

Recycling

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Photo by Lily Selthofner, 2022.

a looming threat manifests

in each gray moment unspent

simply sedated, devoid of sacred 

anxiously awaited in bed.

sometimes,

I miss when things were fun and easy.

sometimes,

things are fun and easy. 

the breeze ties your hair back

so you see, clearly 

the universe is giving.

‘wasting away’

is gathering the strength

to sink into ease again.

Refraction

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Breath by Lily Selthofner

people all around me

are they hurting, are they healing?

are they writing, are they reading?

are they feeling, seeing

the world through which they hurry?

an imperfectly manicured journey, scrolling vulnerability 

as complex opacity confuses passerby

eyes blinded by neon lights 

while hands

grasp towards what is transparent.

Do you belong here:

in the city, on the street?

or with ancient earthworms digging under your feet?

may we see each other in timeless hues, idle mysteries uncovered.

Curiosity

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Photo by Lily Selthofner, 2022.

wheels push the days into months

learned figures of god to follow

reality left unswallowed

loving hugs to marvel

with memories of source preceding,

beauty lingering

may each young vessel of potentiality

emerge unscathed, wrapped in the knowledge of birdsong

into each coming day and month

a baby, growing old

growing up.

Fatigues

A poem by Lily Selthofner, November 7, 2021.

Numbness by Lily Selthofner.

hunger left unsatiated

by an empty break.

berate the day– 

arrive late

to every calling.

a fragile child

gripping heavy wrists

tackles an impossible option– 

feel or function?

stagger through the thick mud of self-hatred

reach for the door–

before the enemy consumes.

bland years stink of decay

the soldier remains

shackled to the frail bed frame.

Seven Minutes

A poem by Lily Selthofner, 2021.

Photo by Lily Selthofner, 2022.

decibels sway, 

ache and echo.

overwhelming,

sentimental.

rolling wheels screech. 

ebb and flow

effervescent urban glow

alarms the tired benches of gray halls,

weeping into blankets

of cold, timeless boredom.

Full Moon in Aries

A poem by Lily Selthofner, Oct. 2021.

A Constellation by Lily Selthofner

don’t part

from dreams. open eyes

release 

anxiety

one foot forward

the other lingers 

behind 

until the next swing.

a dip plunging in

seek refuge in its entirety

Climbing, Lost

A poem by Lily Selthofner, November 2, 2021, Manhattan, NY.

An Optimistic, Nostalgic Tree by Lily Selthofner

‘Uphill battles should never be climbed –

alone.

find a perch, enjoy the view

nostalgic perceptions

wander towards the present 

where I may seek to take an easy step with you.’

Breath

Breath by Lily Selthofner. acrylic on canvas, 8″x10″

This is a COVID-19 piece, inspired by the feeling and form of masks.

A Forest

A Forest by Lily Selthofner. watercolor on paper, 5″x7″

This is a loose watercolor painting, capturing a place that I would like to be idle in.

Coffee

A poem by Lily Selthofner, Feb. 2, 2021.

Photo by Lily Selthofner, 2019.

What does it mean to begin a day? 

to sit reluctantly in the teasing sun.

a shaky early-spring chill 

sedated by hot coffee.

as the breath of bright wind

cools the fire of man’s 

uncomfortable expectations in my cup.