Apr 27 2014

ANTS

Ants in the grass
Ants in my hair
Ants at high tea
Ant queen
Ant males/sterile females
Ants form armies
Ants farm
Ants flicked off my journal
Ant paranoia
Ant deception
Ants build rafts
Ants in this poem
Ant love
Ants love aphids
Ant hate
Ants hate rain
Ants never sleep.
Ants float.
Wasps dive bomb.

Apr 19 2014

The rocking chair moves
like a sewing machine.
The baby’s cheek forms a seam
with his father’s shoulder,
his saliva a dropped stitch
coloring his shirt with patches
of deep blue. He quilts a yawn
with the heaviness of the moon. Read More >

Apr 13 2014

If my husband’s head were a suitcase I’d put it on the front porch and phone Good Will, storehouse of all second-hand goods and include my blue dancing shoes with heels in want of repair. I don’t need them to dance alone in my living room with the curtains drawn to Hitsville U.K., to Fisherman’s Blues, to Ode to Joy like a trash-can ballerina all thump of toes on hardwood floor and limbs akimbo. Read More >

Apr 12 2014

Ophelia Knows What it Feels Like, Do You?

I.

A father will die.

Later, the heart  blooms–

insane

bird of paradise                  orange crowned and pointing.

In the herb garden she escapes

the Panopticon                                the man’s eyes.

 

Apparent engagement with pruning shears in one hand,

rosemary for remembrance in the other.

She snips and tends pansy faces,

hears his voice

in drops of rain on leaves.

 

II.

Ophelia stands in headwaters                    her hips buoy left and right

as though bumped by exiting train passengers.

She is slick and seal-like in rubber gaiters,

trout swim beneath,

a pod of silver moves in                       her reflected face.

Prisms slick on rainbow skin swimming in thoughts               disappear

before the brain registers the image, an imprint here:

seeing and not seeing.

 

Fish beyond reach.

Rapids bubble gray tracers               shadows of bears

at her back;                                         she feels them watching.

 

Read More >

Apr 11 2014

Ways to Divert Rainwater

First, shellac your wide-brimmed hat
with the upturned edges.
Affix it with tubes attached
to bottles on your belt. Go out
in the rain.  Feel mud suck
your toes, gravity slurp laces,
tongues flap cotton fields
riven by rain. Build scaffolds
for your shoes. Go inside, take tea,
empty the bottles that remain
and go again out in the rain. Read More >

Apr 9 2014

This writing exercise for Christine Hamm’s poem, “My Western,” asks you to create a portrait of a place by focusing on tiny, specific concrete details, the plants, animals and colors of a space – and  then  include as many specific names that relate to that place as possible.  The names may be movies or TV shows that are like the space, or names of specific breeds of animals or trees.  The names can also be the names of stores or schools that relate to the place.  Since this is a list poem, there should be very short sentences and often, just lists of related words–Thanks Christine, for both the poem and the exercise! Read More >

Apr 7 2014

She folds the first love letter he sent into an origami crane and goes to the river where she watches all the pretty words float downstream, words like: ‘rare’ and ‘beautiful,’ silly words really, except when applied to oneself. She knows a secret: all clichés are welcome in love poetry not for publication. Read More >

Apr 6 2014

Everything you ever heard is true.
Waves of raven hair ripple down her spine,

nipples point to the sky like absurd
compasses. You feel the crack of bones

against rock. Beauty blinds
like a blade of abalone in the sun.

the light off every one of her scales,
a star of your circumscription.

Originally published in The Monterey Review

 

Photo Credit: Stewart Ferebee

Apr 5 2014

I watched Lars Von Trier’s lastest offering and thought about his fly-fishing metaphor, one I have given thought to before as it applies to various types of relationships. This poem sinks deep into the secrets of trout fishing in America.

Green feathers worked into exotic
nymphs tempt the trout
hiding beneath Monet waterlilies.

He studies the concentric
circles her movement
makes on the surface

and feels the line
vibrate, infusing his
atoms with her energy. Read More >

Apr 4 2014

This morning I awoke to the news that the three men who gang-raped a photojournalist in India were to receive the death penalty. I have followed this case as well as many others. I recently returned from two years abroad living and traveling throughout Southeast Asia. I should state I’m a pacifist, educator and believer in societal reform, especially reform involving institutionalized misogyny. Times they are a-changin’, though perhaps not fast enough

 

Three men break

all four paws of a kitten,

then make it walk.

Wobbles through giant

joss sticks on bandaged paws.

 

A death sentence

will not mend

what has been bent.

No more retracting of claws–

that time’s been spent.