Monthly Archives: July 2013


The Sun in the Leaves

I wake
To the sound of a single leaf
Splashing onto the lake.
The last wave of shadowy bats
Swoop erratically above the water
Snatching a farewell meal
Before a good day’s rest.
The sun is just striking
The tree above me
As if it is the unknown force
That released the leaf.
I count the stars
In the mountain-morning sky
And hear the wind gently blowing them dim.

Why am I here?
The woman lying next to me
Whispers softly in her sleep
Words she can’t remember.
Am I one of those whispers?
Every lap of water against the rocky shore
Strikes me as a single day of my life
I can no longer remember.
What was important to me then?
(Where have you gone April 15, 1982?)
I do not like losing myself
Nor the flitting bats in the dawnlight.

And yet (as Tammy rolls over)
The waves against the rocks
Shape the shoreline.
Minor motions
Created the canyon in which I lie
And the mountains I yearn to climb.
So who am I
To long for the flat earth of yesterday?

Another leaf falls
And its quiet echo
Splashes in my ears.
That single leaf,
Casually resting in the water,
Causes ripples which carve canyons.
I could only hope
For as much in my life.

The sun blows down a third leaf
And Tammy wakes at the sound.
“Thanks for waking me,” she whispers.
“Isn’t it a gorgeous morning?”

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Posted by on July 31, 2013 in college



woman of my horizon

she stands on my horizon
blue eyes flowing into sky
                          into sea
breathing in wind sounds
the whispered voice of leaves

I stand rooted in the sunshine
brown eyes of earth
and call to her
woman of my horizon
call to her
to flow toward me

she lifts her arms
and floats away
sunset trailing
her blue eyes melting into sky
                                into sea

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Posted by on July 30, 2013 in Uncategorized



The fear of fishes                   (published in Poetpourri–The Comstock Review–Spring 1995)
(For Amanda)

at four
I swallowed a goldfish
wondering if all fishes
tasted like tuna.
my father, angry,
told me that the goldfish
still lived in my stomach,
squirming around the other food,
trying to get out.
he told me of Jonah
and how I was now a whale.
he scared me into throwing up that night.
no whole fish came out.
no longer angry,
my father told me it was just a story.
but I still felt that fish squirming.

for years I avoided eating fish,
sure they would help the goldfish
torture me.
and I still felt him inside.
I never told my father, though.
I would stare at our new fish for hours,
jealous of his freedom to move and flip.
and if he stopped and seemed to stare back
I would leave,
knowing he knew
of the secrets deep inside me
I would not let out.

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Posted by on July 29, 2013 in previously published



Sevenling 4 (waxing moon)

I like a waxing moon that is just short of full
    and how I can see the shadow of the sliver to come
I like jugsaw puzzles and having one piece left and waiting to put it in
I like the last step before going through an open door

She is a romantic
She would prefer there is no moon so the stars shine brighter
She loves how a jigsaw puzzle looks just like the picture on the box
    (she always does the outside border first to frame it)
She wants to be in a room, just the two of us alone

She knows I will leave her soon

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Posted by on July 28, 2013 in sevenling



Having Tea With My Aunt

The tradition has been set for years.
Saturday afternoon, 4:00.
Blue linen napkins
fine bone china
sugar cookies to dry my mouth
Earl Grey tea with cream
Grieg or Strauss playing softly.
I concentrate on posture
and controlling my voice,
trying to match my words
to the rhythm of the music.
She is trying to teach me something,
about life
about family
about patterns.
We discuss the music,
she recites poetry by Byron and Coleridge,
I cough, once, behind my fist.
I miss the lesson somehow
that she intends,
but she misses me.
No talk of my dreams,
or my poetry,
or what I think of the family.
She is stuck in her tradition
and I am stuck out of it.
But at least, at the end, 5:00,
we each enjoy a butterscotch candy.

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Posted by on July 27, 2013 in Uncategorized



can e.e. help us?                                (college)

i can not trivial
                     eyes my love
you are strong
i am strong (we
are weak and un
                        linked for a while)

whos wrong
my fault? lies
in not loving
enough you say
i should be committed
to something (least
of all) your mind
is still a diamond
but now it cuts brown
sugar eyes
our lives were strong
now they bleed

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Posted by on July 26, 2013 in college



The Master of Gateway Park

An old man dances in the park
With his arms spread wide,
Taking slow steps,
Circling in a morning ritual.
He is The Master in loafers
Making the sun rise
And creating the universe
To the beat of his own
Stately music.
Every morning
Before the dew on the grass
Starts to shine
He dances
And then the sun rises.

One morning
A little girl
In a white church dress
Skips through the park
Behind him.
She dances, too.
He wonders
Did he create her?
Did she make the sun rise today?

And with these questions in his mind
The old man in the park
Dies before the next sunrise
And the little girl
In the white church dress
Does not notice.

But the sun does rise.

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Posted by on July 25, 2013 in old discoveries



1st date

interesting conversation for a first date
            the eroticism of feet
            where she likes to be touched
                  to reach orgasm
      the dissatisfaction of former lovers
            and herself
she did not care
      about others listening
      and I, too, joined in
      caught in the raciness of talk
            on masturbation
            and sexual fantasies
            and the swirling of Jacuzzis
Now, though,
      what will we talk about in bed—
            The weather?
            How the meal was?
            The true banality of our lives?

All through dinner
   I watched her lips

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Posted by on July 24, 2013 in Uncategorized



Ice Age

He walks on ice
hard jagged ice
that cuts his feet
but the numbness slows his blood
and he likes the color red

He walks on ice
slick shiny ice
he can not change paths
nor move his feet too quickly
only wise men can run

He walks on ice
cold truthful ice
he questions his eyes
reflected between his feet
because they know the answer

He walks on ice
empty hollow ice
that cracks behind his steps
so he can only move forward
it is his direction anyway

He is made of ice
in a world frozen still
it will not melt while he’s walking
it is his pathway through lies
and underneath his feet
fish stare at him
frozen in the ice

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Posted by on July 23, 2013 in old discoveries



Drifting                    (published in Zuzu’s Petals Online #18)

She moves with the drift of the continents
Keeping her balance
By refusing to look at the sky.
Sand moves from her path
So she follows her own footsteps
Fitting perfectly
Into the holes she has yet to make.
She does not notice.
On the other side of the earth
The waves throw themselves onto the beach
To die.
It is the only way
They know to mourn her.

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Posted by on July 22, 2013 in previously published