Category Archives: Poetry

This Dimming Light Between Us

The days, you keep tying them to hooks on the ceiling. Clay ornaments on strings knocking together like wind chimes in a summer storm or the eerie jingle of the Good Humor truck driving by. Somehow both immediate and fleeting. They make the most delicate clamor

The noise sends me out of the house late at night after you’ve drifted off with the raft of our bed. I dig up the neighbor’s yard, catch raccoons in the garden, walk to the bar on the corner and ask the bartender for something, anything. I make the most delicate clamor

She ducks under the counter and pulls out a pickle jar. Small holes in lid. Label advertises Dill Spears. I am not afraid of the fluttering moths inside, their wings outspread, anticipating flight. I find you at the kitchen table when I return. We make the most delicate clamor

To a Friend Whose Operation Has Been Postponed

Open the rusty screen door
Follow my voice through the center
of the forest with no trees

Float atop the escaping river
like a weekday problem on a Saturday afternoon
Watch the cardinals glide above

this mess of a city, careless, self-absorbed,
The drivers in their compact cars, too,
accelerating behind you to dates and games

the scattered possibilities of something better
Take solace in the abandoned
take-out bags and six-pack rings

like embedded buttons to press
along the speckled shore of Lake Michigan
Lives are being lived here—mine, yours too—

Fill your lungs with ivy
Feel each of your toes slicken with grease
and pulverized stone, the natural aftermath

of ten million people using up this world
a paragraph at a time, a paragraph
at a time when each of us yearns to write

A burnished tome

Fall Away

No one sees the sun the same
some notice shadows     some the glow
floating in between damask curtains
lenses pinpointing the here     now     today
maybe some regard its power as a threat
fretting ultraviolet     infrared     gamma?
mamas mostly     smearing white chemical
wool over the backs of their babies
seizing any chance to capture time but
what their children will do later     wander
     certain days skipping school on beaches
     reserving time in a tanning bed
     red arms blistering after a road trip
flip the safety switches off and
band the mamas who can only watch their all
fall away and hope their children return

 

Constructive feedback—both positive and negative—welcome. I’m posting this early on in my writing process just to get back into posting regularly again. Interested to know your thoughts on the subject of the poem.

Vagabond

The day I moved into the hollow of a giant redwood
the crowberry eyes of a family of martens appraised
my ragged chin, my desperate need for shelter,

and rightly deemed me harmless. They knew the city does not shelter
those that need it most. I unpacked my life, slept below the red wood
sky as constellations of banana slugs appraised

my verdant dreams, and woke to find my nap praised
with larksong. I joined their melody, singing for shelter,
for autumn and spring, for the growth rings of a redwood.

The redwood appraised my plea, and gave me a family in which to take shelter.

 

The Aerialists

It’s easy to idolize the women floating above you. The footlights set their sequins on fire; the music spins them between gasps and cables. You appreciate the simplicity, the reliance on ribbons, the swinging on silks. Their work is to be upside down, arms extended, hanging by an ankle to please strangers, and you blush to think you’ve complained about less. Of course the spotlight reveals the tent roof beyond, the spider web of trapeze to one side, still you keep the tangle of your gaze on the dazzle-skinned for fear they’ll float away.