May 30 2015

blue on black

yesterday my cat
dropped a grackle at my feet
alive, but injured

and i tried to save it
(to no avail)

i lifted it gently and
placed it beneath the yellow
lilies, offering shelter and
food and water and also
a projection of hope

and the bird looked up at me
frightened and resigned,
and then together, we waited


later, i carried the body
away and noticed, in the way
humans do,
that it was heavier in death
than in life

as if its spirit had somehow
managed to counteract gravity,
at least a little

and i realized
we have it all wrong,
this thing called grief
our underlying fear
of being forgotten

because the world
always remembers

it’s just that we

 forget ourselves


I took this photo a few weeks ago, and it made me laugh, Mr. Grackle looking all fierce.
I’d like to think that’s the look he’s giving NaughtyKitten™ just now.




May 28 2015

reaching for the moon…

and coming away with a handful of air.

Isn’t that they way of things, always? But we never let it stop us, and that is the magic, the miracle, of living.

To be human is to struggle, and it’s an ongoing battle, this existence, even when skies are blue. And that’s what keeps us going, that’s what makes us whole, the dark and the light, night and day, sun and moon, babe and crone.

It’s so easy to forget that we need all of it, the shade and the shadow, the hunger and the hurt, the fear and the frustration, all the parts we’d rather hide or ignore or bury, because nature, human or otherwise, will always strive for balance.

And we, as humans, would like to think ourselves out of the equation, we want to rise above, to banish the things that weigh us down, without accepting the fact that these are the very things that keep us grounded. Without them, we would simply float away.

The size and the beauty of the bloom are determined underground, in the darkness of the soil that anchors us.

Roots, air, water, light, earth, growth. It’s a package deal.

And just look how beautifully it’s wrapped.





May 26 2015

brief fleeting glimpses of perpetual clarity

days when i do nothing
but listen

moving my body in the rhythm
of nurture

i care for you and
together we grow

remembering the mirror
i’ve forgotten

wisdom matters less
than sun on skin

i break a bloom off
with one brown shoulder

a mistake to remind me
of gentle

and whisper my apology
to wind




May 23 2015



in the style

of me





May 21 2015

could-have-beens and
and the questions filling my days

“You can’t ‘just’ be a poet—which when rent is due is absolutely true—therefore we get pretend titles like Ambassador and Legislator and Seer. The upside is that we are free (or, downside, forced) to find or invent roles for ourselves (and our poems) that engage differently with the material demands of our culture.”~Mark Bibbins

I came across this quote yesterday, after a conversation the evening before with my husband about the paths we take and why we take them, and whether or not we regret them, or at the very least, wish we’d done things differently.

This is something I’ve thought about a lot recently, as I find myself aging, as I lose friends and loved ones, as I traverse the territory of middle-age that stands between now and crone. And I find myself, quite often, wishing I had done just that. Except then I realize that I did do everything differently, without thought, without choice even, because my path was never the one paved with asphalt and fancy construction, my path was always just a break in the trees somewhere in the woods, and I was always the barefoot girl staring wide-eyed at the moon.

So, okay, no regrets, but there are still things that haunt me. And the older I get, the more security becomes one of them, the more struggling looks less romantic and simply hard. The more I wonder if I should have put some high heels on all those years ago and walked down a different road, wearing a suit that might confine, but would also protect. I was a straight-A student my whole life. I could have done anything. (At least that’s what the little voice whispers.)

But the voice that always answers back, the one that’s stronger and sing-song and slightly rose-colored, tells a different story. That I could only ever have done exactly what I did. I could only ever be who I am. And that is my solace.

Will it be enough to see me through?

Only time will tell, and besides, the sun is shining down on these roses about to bloom and a few years back, this whole bush was crushed to the ground. I see no regret in these buds that turn themselves boldly towards the sun, and the thorns and the scars are all hidden just now, in the darkest shadows of growth.

I’ll sit here and watch them open and listen to the birds and inhale all the yesterdays that brought me to this moment.

And all I’ll breathe out is today.









May 19 2015

in the shade in the shape
of a shadow

i stood in the sun for three days once
singular and proud of my peacock pretty ordinance
and refused to marry the sky

growth was always my pattern
and bending
my habit

coy and shy
cut and displayed
thirsty and forgotten

i was always
about color

and you
stole my green
stripped my purple
and stomped my chartreuse back
into black and white

until i became
an abstract painting of perhaps

washed proud and stood clean
in the summer
of the river
of change







May 14 2015

floating in the sound
of cynosure

I placed this Solomon’s Seal in an entirely different spot in my garden, years ago. For most of those years, it struggled, sending up two or three shoots and then quickly fading as spring turned to summer.

Now, here it is, moving itself around the landscape, seeking the perfect light-shade-soil combination on its own. An independent learner, self-motivated, a survivor. One that apparently loves long, hard, extremely cold winters.

As my garden ages, it makes its own plans, completely ignoring the best-laid of mine and filling in the blanks as it so chooses. I’ve become less keeper than companion, and most of the time, I resist the urge to fight for control. I let the wanderers wander. It’s better that way, for both of us.

It took me fifty-two years to begin to understand. And I still slip, there are still times when I make every attempt to wrestle my way to the top. Sometimes, I even manage to win. But mostly, I just get tired of the struggle. And giving in has its own rewards, too.

Another lesson learned in the classroom of garden.

I sit here with my tea. I pay attention.

I watch and I listen and I sit.

And the world washes over me.






May 12 2015

folding into grace
unfolding into growth

mirror-made and tender-footed

all this opening

takes the courage

of forgetting




May 9 2015


It feels like summer already, high heat, lazy naps (for him, at least), flip flops and outdoor fires, all beneath the only ceiling that doesn’t close me in.

Gypsy days and windows-open nights.

The perfect lullabye of peepers and crickets.

Sun on my skin.

Last night I sat outside until midnight. It was 88° when I walked inside.

This morning, everything is green.

Game on.




May 7 2015

the letting go of hanging on

because shedding your skin
is just as necessary
as gathering hips
for the tea
you sip
from the cup
of yesterday’s