Apr 18 2021

the year of living dangerously

and now they say it’s not that bad, the sky isn’t
falling and here we are, bits of blue in our hair,
trapped in the rat-maze tracks we’ve worn in the
carpet, no longer even trying to get out.

and now they say sorry, so sorry, sorry, not sorry
and no one knows who cares, doesn’t care,
can’t care, wouldn’t care, cares too much,
has gone mad with the caring, can’t find
a damn thing to care about.

and now the sky is blue but it’s always raining and
the basement’s flooding, water seeping in around
the edges, no one sees if we close the door, ignore
the smell, carry on with dinner and distraction and
pretend people aren’t dying in a dark spreading puddle
of sour statistic.

and now. the question that only ever has one
answer, the damned unprepared living of it all,
smiling when the sun hits your face for one brief
silent moment, aching for life, alive love
laughter landing, burning through the
empty stare of days.

and now.


Jun 5 2020

cracks in the road
of good intention

i think about words and the way we use them
sometimes as weapons
sometimes as shields

sometimes to unite
sometimes to divide

i think about unjustness and all the times
i fought the status quo
all the times
people around me rolled their eyes
because i wouldn’t stop couldn’t stop didn’t stop
saying

this is wrong
this is wrong
this is wrong

and now i’m silent

perhaps i’m listening
or exhausted
or a little bit broken

or thinking about the times
when i said
nothing

i rage inside but the words hesitate
just
on the edge
of my crone woman
tongue
as if gathered in their own lone protest

we will not go into the world for you
no one’s listening
it will not make a difference
no one’s listening
all the words have been spoken
no one’s listening

and besides

you must act
you must act
you must act

perhaps this is why
i can’t sit still

or hear my own heart beating

marching alone
through miles of anger

getting nowhere

soaked through with
cold hard injustice
pounding down around me

stepping over puddles
filled with lies


Apr 7 2020

30 days of poems – 2020 {7}

.

color
(in darkness)

is the shape
of your breath
(tangerine)

or the whisper
that scratches blue
out of black

and the middle
(which never falls
dead center)

the way the moon
wakes me up
with sharp raps
on my window

or silence

embarrassed

by its own
soliloquy

.

. . . . .

.

here i am again, doing this again–30 days of poems, hoping the words will come.
hoping hope will come, as well.

Jan 9 2020

hot flashes

I couldn’t sleep for weeks
and then I remembered that I needed to write.

Ariel was always a dream, but a wakeful one,
whispering pictures and posturing portent.

I don’t need to sing, my body
is always happy to do that for me.

There’s a fire burning inside me (literally)
at the same time there’s a fire
burning down the world.

I lay awake at night and rage at everything,
but in a peaceful way.

I eat grace for breakfast and anomaly for lunch.

Everything has too many calories.
Something else I have to burn.

I can only sleep when my feet are cool
and mine are scorching these sheets
like my mother’s old iron.

This room is never dark enough,
and I am never really here.

It doesn’t matter.

Matter is energy and I am combustible.
I float like a gas just south of the ceiling.

No one ever notices, which is funny.
Except when I get stuck in cobwebs.

I’ve lived in this house longer than I haven’t.
It’s small and tiny and we are always tripping over each other.

I trip over everything anyway.

It’s winter and I miss the sky.

The snow geese are down at the swamp screaming injustice.

On New Year’s Eve the fireworks gave them fits
and I smiled as I stood
alone in the center of road
as white sparks drifted down
like lost feathers.

.

.

.


Apr 30 2017

it’s like this

there will always be days
stretched tight
by the too dry skin
of living

there will always
be evil
rubbing shoulders
with light

always be witches
dancing circles
at night

always a cloud
blotting out
the gold sun

always loss and possibility
mixing chance
in roiling ocean

it doesn’t have
to be enough

or even
filling

warmth is the illusion
of life

parody is pure
in the blossom of sight

and green things grow
from the cracks
in black ice

.

.

.

 


Apr 15 2017

virtual reality

the world we sit in
and the world we live in
have become
two different things

by now
fifteen minutes
is the measure
of antipathy
and data
the construct
of worth

observation
has replaced
interaction

i see you
you see me

we do not touch

i know one thing
about you

you know
three things
about me

it all adds up

we can’t
catch up

.

.

.


Jan 4 2017

chaos is a pattern

just ask nature, she’ll be happy to let you know
that dance was invented by willows
weeping at winter’s impostor
and stars are made from moans left hanging
on a breeze in the corner of reflection

.

we are all mirrors on the same wall of eternity
chanting hope and charity with leavening

.

this circle this tree this mind mattering
tossed by cold gale and rent from warm earth
growth and decimation occur concurrently
it doesn’t matter where you stand
it doesn’t matter where you stand

.

darkness always returns
as does mo(u)rning

.

.

.

.


Sep 11 2016

nine eleven

fifteen years later
that’s what we call it

not nine eleven oh one
not September 11, 2001
just
nine eleven

two words

three digits

two towers

four planes

thousands

of

mothers
fathers
daughters
sons
sisters
brothers
wives
husbands
aunts
uncles
girlfriends
boyfriends

not statistics

falling

from

the

sky

not dates
or where were you’s

just whole hearts
in odd numbers

each one

the only necessary

evidence

of love

::

.

I wrote this for the 10-year anniversary
of this tragic, horrid event.
I am re-posting it again today, in honor of all those hearts.
Never forget.

.


Aug 24 2016

the second time

the wind tells tales of emptiness
littering wide roads with leaves just released
from the captivity of decent living

beneath a sky gone grey with culture
an empty swamp sags with the pattern of destruction
heron filled and heron full on rotting fish and
stain stitched opportunity

and all the green has rolled inward, hoping for storm
or honest anger
finding nothing but dry heat hot
from the memory of august
balanced on the razor of reduction

the sun sinks red and rises false rose golden
as blinding answers dive
into the dusty hardheart crevasse of question
playing host to this catalog of possibility

while the distant beauty vulture
screams his mocking two-faced litany
of violent regeneration

.

.

.


Aug 10 2016

lying in bed on a wednesday

it’s so easy to focus on the flaws.

easy to miss the forest for the trees when you want to keep standing in the shade.

the big picture contains so much information, when all i want is this leaf or that berry or maybe even a thorn.

a pair of cardinals live in the yard just now, young it seems, and foolish, often landing just feet away from NaughtyKitten. I want to warn them, run at them arms high and voiced raised to scare them off for good. but i like having them here, listening to their incessant chirp, and i like that they land just outside the door. perhaps i admire their optimism.

but inside me, a little voice keeps saying do something, as if i’m the one in charge, as if it’s all up to me, as if i can fix the situation.

it rained last night for the first time in months. at least any sort of rain that meant anything, we’ve had a few sprinkles here and there, but this was thunder and lightning and a brief downpour, which is better than no downpour at all. no matter that it meant i got no sleep.

this morning the humidity stands tall in the yard, and i wonder if the flowers revel in the sauna, or if it just makes them feel tired and lazy, too.

i smell the pepper of phlox and marvel that the plant is still there, just outside my window, despite the fact that i’ve planned to dig it up for years. i have no desire to count how many.

the circus has come to america’s backyard, but no one knows who is selling the tickets.

i wonder if the babies will survive.

i wonder if those cardinals and the cat have made a pact.

i wonder if i’m crazy for thinking these things.

a small airplane makes itself known overhead, disturbing the stillness.

i wonder what’s it’s like to fly so high.

.

.

.