Archive for the ‘2008’ Category

slow hold

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012

the gentle
plains of your body lay

unconstrained by seams
beneath slow palms. slow

as they could go.
eyes I knew, even

in shadow: your mother’s
blue kindness. (was she

also a sharer of spinach
and rice?)  silver

caravan, Cache La Poudre
could not contain the crash

of us, or our condensation,
clouds born of pulsing

breath and skin blushing
windows. finally, out in

the air, Hold raised her head.
Owl asked questions.  we smiled

inches from the beds of
our lips, faces reflecting

suns of bare teeth
hiding tongues.


magic for inducing labor

Sunday, January 29th, 2012

open every cabinet, door
all your precious boxes

kiss the jewels inside their bellies
treasure trunks, unlock them

oil every squeaky drawer
windows, open yawning

overfill your tea cups, bowls
spill them into earthen hollows

belly’s fleshy gate will follow
listen for the ancient knocking


Four colleagues

Tuesday, May 10th, 2011

Spanish, Art,
English and Speech,
stood in a square clasping hands,
crisscrossing embraces,
celebrating the settling of Speech’s
long-coming, limb-lopping,
soul-stalking litigation: erased,
magically disintegrated, swallowed
by the void of the day’s new moon.
The science was easy to explain.
No one missed a beat: Yes, of course,
of course, removed by the waning moon!

Even the trees
, mused English,
Even the trees come to mean.
Her peach tree, damaged by storm,
blown down years and years ago,
before her own near death collapse,
five years ago began to grow,
resurrected, new, sprouting two
upraised limbs and this year sunrise globes,
praising the sky for health, she said,
My Life! That tree is my life!
Art added: and two thighs…
Speech finished: giving birth…
And Spanish beamed: to five years of doctoral work!
A Roman numeral five! and a V for victory!

Their nonsense raised up gooseflesh,
made tired eyes gleam, passed
light to light on the high dry plains,
where squares aren’t meant to shine
and spin wild whirling spheres of
hope and living poetry, but do.


Though he has a replacement

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

He is still playing the guitar.
The thinnest string broke

Two days ago. Low tunes
Thread slow through

My hands forgetting
Words, and silence

Sings the sixth
String in me.


lunch poem

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

Liberate me from the screen
fluorescent dream of office living.

Take their eyes off me
as I eat or try to fall asleep
reliving the eloquence and
stumbling, sometimes stunned
speech teaching wrenches from me—
they do not know how deep.

Show me how to eat this bamboo shoot
with more than teeth and speed.

Hold my hand and point.
Help me see the poem in my fortune
cookie: All personal breakthroughs
begin with a change in beliefs.


two haiku for birds

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

rain from the gutter
sings through night’s open windows
sparrows miss the sun

wrens wait for clear light
inside wet cottonwood trees
the whole town sings, come!



Saturday, April 16th, 2011

You make the endless field
Of crickets in me
Sing the high symphony
Of one bright sound.


we trade one kind of happiness for another

Saturday, April 16th, 2011

Your husband making sweet and sour chicken,
taking the children fishing or doing laundry while you read
to them of conches, of a Hindu prince who runs, while a raven eats away
your heart, pecking for missing pomegranate seeds,
finding only poems. He blinks. You blink. He flies away. You turn
from your husband’s touch. It is too much, or not enough.
The shared smile over children may be, but you and he
don’t fly touching wings despite trying.
For this:
Your husband flown the nest. Your heart a full fruit in four hands, burst,
staining walls with blood thrown stars every morning, every time you
crack it between thumbs from whom poems have temporarily fled
into folded laundry’s lights, darks and reds, into tired Illinois menus
of pork pot roast, potatoes, frozen pizzas and children (hold them
tighter) punching to grab your eyes bedazzled by sunrise over skin,
by a Hindu prince who runs and returns, runs and returns,
and a raven who no longer blinks and burns.


this house leaks

Wednesday, April 6th, 2011

breathes through
cracks between

sliding panes
one hundred

years old.
My bills

are bigger
than they

could be
but wind

seeping in
is free.


Walking the Winter Mountain with One Dog

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

for Andrea Spain

Our bearded neighbor said he saw
boot tracks in snow roving through
our land. He put his foot inside a foot
shaped hole, enlarged it, your small
Vibram sole print, ballet toes behind cold
steel, danced about by canine tracks:

one set, one less than last year.

I wonder if you met January spreading
gentle shepherd remains on land who,
unwary, receives our bodies in blood
and ash. If I were large enough, I would
hold you that way, as liquid or dust,
and let the wind do what it does to us.


When an eight year old boy sobs

Saturday, February 19th, 2011

I hate my life one hundred and eight times
on his top bunk, refusing touch,
and mother leaves his side after trying
to lie beside him, and father lifts his head
from folded arms to let her climb down the ladder,
the boy eventually sighs himself to sleep
while the parents lie in bed almost holding each other
in the dark, speaking in bed tones of how to best inhale
suffering and exhale relief. She says she wrinkles
her brow, closes her eyes, hunches, feels red heat
when she breathes in; opens her eyes, softens
her expression, straightens her shoulders, sees
cool green when she breathes out, because
it is the body that remembers before the mind,
the body where suffering lodges like a sliver
of glass in the palm. It won’t work its way out.
He nods. You have to break the skin.


Because we knew I’d be the one hurt

Saturday, February 19th, 2011

I want to follow the broken Vs of geese.
I know their awkward hopeful song.
They are flying the wrong way, east,
toward the rising sun. Instead I would go west

where, orange, our hope set. The sun drowned
so beautifully. You snapped a photo and
the night before, the string of possibility,
that white spider’s thread between

hearts and tender intimacy. I resignedly agreed
and bled, not wanting you to see me wrapping
the frayed end around my finger
like a child’s simple reminder

of what to do when the time comes.
Yes, west: I would wade in the place
where the sea once rolled in dark
around my unlawful feet, pulled

ancient sand from a spoiled shore
while you mourned the awful coast
grain by grain out from under me
to help me see.



Monday, February 7th, 2011

Handsome, we never
had a chance. It’s true.
You were lonely alone,
I was lonely in a room
full of people. We made do.
We had no future, no past.
We had it all if all

we needed were two times two blue

eyes, times two empty
hands, times two blue
nights: double duet of thighs
growling too much desert sand,
too different lives unable
to stand together, so we lay
and now the lying is through.


waiting for poems and a baby from Rosemerry

Saturday, February 5th, 2011

no poem in words
this morning from you.
perhaps the words whirled
directly into girl upon
your trembling breast.



Friday, February 4th, 2011

Pink sun rising over cuticle sill,
rosy flesh beneath transparent window of you,
why have I never wondered that you spread
across raw skin, reach beyond round tip,
produce opaque crescent moon waxing toward
necklace clasps, stubborn stickers, scabs and
itching skin, not useful like your four sisters,
but useful nonetheless, scratching unconvincingly
where they reach to scratch, an afterthought,
sometimes not joining in scratching at all. Lazy?
I think not. You have your own mind.  You simply ride
the thumb, that famous digit that makes us
what we are, fumbling, reluctantly following others
to find purpose. When needed, though lonely,
you do what needs done, and it is enough.