Saturday, May 21, 2016

If Found, The Moon

If found, the moon
should be placed in the hands of an origami expert
to be folded into itself--an envelope--
and mailed immediately to its mother, a bird.

I say this as advice, and as instruction
for those in darkness or earthbound, overly wakeful
in hours fractured like a broken parcel, 
that no one inquires about or missing it, waits for.

Never doubt that this message is for you,
as flightless as an egg or a stone, sad as a star at noon;
if stone, bolder in rain--if bird, born to rise--
if star, then sister to the sun--if lost, Atlantis, if found, the moon.

for Play It Again Toads. I did Susie's "Taking it To The Streets."


Friday, May 20, 2016

Sappho of The Pharmacy Counter

"All I ask of you is one thing that you'll never do"--Morrissey

I got rave reviews for 
cleaning under the couch.
Museums called. 
Anderson Cooper texted, saying "keep in touch."

Well fuck all you guys.
From out my ass, brilliance,
a fine new poem
and so how about that? and you haven't even seen the best ones.

Listen, sweet Sappho of the pharmacy counter,
here I am, the mermaid--you've sat waiting for my call.
Put down those pills, but keep the glasses and white coat--
You can be my Blind Ghost of Future Love, as on the bed we fall. 

In my yard, the trees sway
with birds who could talk but don't,
because if they did,
no one would ever leave them alone.

The sun comes up, doesn't it ever think of anything fresh?
And the sky, endlessly insistently blue.
Sappho honey, parlez black words that shine like ravens in the rain
and I'll kick out this beautiful shit for you,

beautiful, fantastic, fucking feathered perfection for you.  

for grapedude's list thingggggg         


Sunday, May 15, 2016

No More Of Jerry

At some point, there was no more of Jerry
and yet, I kept walking him around anyway
no matter how he billowed and sagged,
no matter the film-melt at his hands, his feet, his face.

I kept thinking, this is Jerry, MY Jerry,
and he will rally, he will laugh it off and start dancing
even though we would both know it hadn't been a joke;
love can be that way, can't it?--illogical, like improv, chancy.

Okay, I lied.
We had got to that point of inattention where things get missed,
or recast, or denied,
and so when I walked down the street with Jerry I wore no black,
but the night lent me its share
and I wrapped it over my shoulders
and knotted it in my hair.

Look, Jer, I'm 3 a.m.--
your girl full of stars, still circling, ever faithful.
There's no more of you, but life is crammed with leftover me;
I don't know what to do, and it's lonelycold, unbearable, rainful.

'Bye, Jerry.
When dawn comes, I'll have to pretend there's a tomorrow,
and there it will be no matter what--
without me caring, without you there.

For Karin's "No More" challenge at Real Toads 



Saturday, May 14, 2016


(by coal black)

a cardinal and a rat on my feeder

dead porcelain doll in my hands.

people no one can see on the wraparound porch

like a row of ampersands.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Book Review: "The Castaways"

The CastawaysThe Castaways by Elin Hilderbrand

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Apparently, I am the last woman in the country to discover Elin Hildebrand, but I can see why she is so popular. "The Castaways" is about a group of eight friends--four couples--who have been close for years. They all live on Nantucket Island (a character in itself) and they all are way more well-off than I will ever be, but this isn't one of those tiresome novels where it's all about stuff and glitz.

When one of the couples goes for an anniversary sail and are drowned in a mysterious accident, secrets begin to come out. Some of the friends were closer with another friend's spouse than was suspected, there may have been foul play, there were certainly lies and an undercurrent of restless emotions.

While the plot is engrossing, what I loved the best was the eight characters. They are all so human, so easy to relate to, and so marvelously drawn by the author, that loved spending time with them, and I cared about them all. There is no obvious hero or villain; they are all just human beings caught up in life. I wholeheartedly recommend "The Castaways" and look forward to reading more by this author.

View all my reviews

Thursday, May 12, 2016


She only knew two things--
mice, and sky.

So, when she was injured and the sky scorned her,
the thought that she must now be a mouse drove her mad.

They had to wrap her. She wanted to kill them,
but had become a lesser even to pigeons; she was all fury and no effect.

Nothing in the sky is sick, but the ground is full of bones and graves.
She became feet without wings, dying of stillness.

Why did they touch without killing?
Didn't they know that, under her feathers, she was meat like anything else?

Days went by. She fought them. She lived. So what?
They brought her food and she tore at it. 

After forever, she stopped hurting.
After forever, they took her outside and the sky was still there.

She took a step, then two. She tried her hurt place.
For her, gravity had always been reversed, and so she raised her shoulders and felt herself fall.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Woman In A Fire

"You've changed," she said,
and so I have.
Oh my love, get up, put on your clothes
(if you want to make the sun stutter in the sky;
if you want the swallows to go stunned and still)
and go outside.

Everything that was dead a month ago has sprung from the ground
or from the ends of branches.
Everything that was here a year ago is dead and sleeping,
forever, in that same ground.

You thought I was like an old lamp, always there,
always unnoticed and beloved at the same time.
I thought that too.
Now, though, starlings have found a way in, 
and I can barely keep my feet on the ground.
They call me;
they are a cacophony,
reminding me, so much, of--in those first days--you.

I had a dog, my whole heart, Mercury on four legs.
How I loved him! Now, he is gone
and I see a ginger cat in the garden every morning.
Goodbye, my love.
How it twists my heart to say it.
The starlings call, the ginger cat watches the birds,
and I change, rising on an updraft
or the ashy exhalation of a favorite book, now burning.