Mind Caviar Poetry

Bruce W. Niedt  is a family man from the shadows of the greater Philadelphia area who had a "personal renaissance" about 18 months ago and hasn't stopped writing since. He finds time to write when not engaged in raising teenage sons and toiling in the cubicles of a government job. His work has appeared in several publications, including the e-zines Stirring, Samsara, Wings and Lovewords, and the print magazines Waterways and Blind Man's Rainbow. He won third prize for poetry in the Seedhouse Magazine Summer Writing 2000 Contest, and was a winner of the Millennium Portals Poetry Contest, sponsored by the Camden County NJ Cultural and Heritage Foundation. He has had the honor to have read his works on WXPN-FM in Philadelphia, and he is an administrator for the poetry website Pathetic.org.

E-mail Bruce W. Niedt.

How to Peel an Orange
by Bruce W. Niedt

Hold it loosely, like a yellow baseball.
Rub the leathery hide.

Punch a fingernail through the nippled top.
Push through to the hollow below.

Rip, pull out and down gently.
Watch the spray of oil in the air.
Inhale the pungent citrus.

Disregard the orange-white meat beneath your nails.
Disrobe this fruit completely.

Pick off the gangly strings of useless pulp.
Regard the naked segments, and with both thumbs,
separate the hemispheres.

Tear through the meridian.
See the droplets weep through the membranes.

Strip the translucent skin.
Reveal the clustered buds of juice like teardrops.

Peel off one tender crescent.
Bring it to your lover's lips, so as to
suck it, nibble it, bite it

bursting the tiny juice pockets,
licking your fingertips.


Raga, 1970
by Bruce W. Niedt

She comes to his dorm room -
after talking awhile, they decide to make love.
As she takes off her shirt,
he goes to the stereo and changes the record.

Shankar drops from spindle to platter,
atop some psychedelic rock.
The needle bobbles into the groove.
The music begins -
distinctive keen of sitar,
slow sinuous harmonics,
vibratoed, arpeggioed strings.

She sits astride him
as he lies back;
his hands appreciate her breasts.
She moves across him,
like the unwinding muscle of music,
the snake of her skin
he caresses in time.

Mouths explore in counterpoint,
arms and legs begin the dance
as the tabla joins in -
a stretched percussive beat
that punctuates the cry of strings,
crescendo, accelerando,
snatched up by their bodies,
undulating, sweat breaking,
lips begin to part -

Then suddenly, they break off
in the middle of the fevered raga.
Something doesn't quite connect.
They lie side by side, unsmiling,
while the music climaxes without them.

He still desires her, but he's not the only one.
She still desires him, but he's not the only one.
This is just the first of many
miscalculated nights,
when strings and skins
would collide and part.

Tangent: The Ocean
by Bruce W. Niedt

"Summer is for animals / the ocean is erotic."
      --William Meredith, "Rhode Island"

Summer is for animals, the ocean is erotic.
the bivalves play,
open, shut, a vaginal display,
sea cucumbers throb,
starfish dance and intertwine,
crabs skitter about,
looking for mates in the sand,
dolphins suggest a sensual array
of two in the dunes,
suits discarded,
making sand angels,
splaying, rolling,
chasing little mollusks back to the surf.

Summer is for animals, the ocean is erotic.
Your mouth is like sea salt.
Your seaweed hair tangles me
like a little striped fish.
I am caught in your green net.
Mouths collide in primal struggle
tongues fighting for dominance.
Your hips suggest the ebb and flow,
and waves of shuddering desire
grab us, pull us together like tides.
We are the two-backed beast of the beach
returning to our ancestors
for a moment or two.

We are the animals of the sea,
washed in the sun,
washed in the water,
salted and sanded, caked with our sex,
as we lie side by side, after,
letting the foam wash over us,
letting the tide take us out
to a summer secret place
where we are the shells,
the fish, the kelp,
the whole biocycle,
in one, or two.

"How to Peel an Orange", "Raga 1970" and "Tangent: The Ocean" Copyright © 2001 Bruce W. Niedt. All rights reserved. 

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