Saturday, November 17, 2007


the yellow death
of fall

frozen leaves
resplendent glow

may i be
so beautiful
one day

Thursday, August 02, 2007


There is no rain. The leaves are brown
and curled, and crisp at their extremities,
the pastures dried and hard. The cows
are eating winter hay. Midsummer’s breeze
stirs up the dust, then sets it down
again, unchanged: a lesson in futility.

What shall we do? We who are here
in this dry place, where furrows etch our skin
and blood we spill is swallowed by the air
look to the west, and to the west again
for signs of storms which don’t appear.
No clouds are gathered on this horizon.

Anxiety and fear well in our throats.
Brittle as grass, the crushing weight
of our insufficiency swamps our hope
and builds our supplication for our fate.
As if our prayers will make rain less remote,
as if we can do anything but wait.

A super-rough draft. Hope all who read this are well.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Five Truths

Jessica at 9 to 5 Poet posted an idea called Five Truths - sort of a meme where you post five things that are true about yourself in the moment. She says "So, if you would like to try it, all you have to do is write at the top of your journal page 5 Truths. Then, write one sentence (minimum) for each truth. Don't force it, just let the sentences create the form. If a poem doesn't occur to you after writing them down, pick one of the truths and write about that."
I liked the idea, so here goes:

Five Truths:
1. I'm reading Theodore Roethke and listening to Josh Ritter.
2. I don't need to have it all figured out right now.
3. My hands are my favorite part of myself.
4. I'm craving cooler weather - and RAIN, sweet rain.
5. I love the way marigolds smell.

Anyone reading this who wants to participate, consider yourself tagged!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Happy Independence Day

To anyone reading in the US - have a wonderful and safe July 4th holiday. My own celebration is sure to involve time with family, sparklers, and that small-town wonder, corn bingo.

So - I may not be posting for PT this week, but I'm hoping the respite from everyday life provides some good fodder for poetry.

Monday, July 02, 2007


Must be the time of year to redecorate, as I notice some of the other PT bloggers are doing also. I would love some feedback about the new header and color scheme! I was going for clean, easy-to-read, and soothing, plus of course reflecting the color in the title.

Does it look too somber? That's really my only concern. I'm fairly upbeat, and I wouldn't want new visitors to think that I am a sad and depressive person.

So - let me know what you think!

Monday, June 25, 2007


Have you bent low to see
ants labor in their daily toil
while we live and work and play with guns?

Their industry is joy.
Each to the whole, they work as one,
particular and necessary.

Ask: is every action
essential, nothing secondary,
as they tunnel through the soil?


As they tunnel through the soil,
essential, nothing secondary -
ask: is every action

particular and necessary?
Each to the whole, they work as one,
their industry is joy.

While we live and work and play with guns,
ants labor in their daily toil.
Have you bent low to see?

This poem was inspired by Natasha Trethewey's incredible Myth, from Native Guard. I was fascinated with the way the lines inverted themselves in the second half of the poem, changing their meaning - like walking a labyrinth. Jessica at 9 to 5 Poet did the same thing with Through the Looking Glass, and I knew I had to try my hand as well. I changed the rhyme scheme to be a little more subtle, and don't think I achieved the same inversion of meaning that Trethewey accomplished... but it is still one of my favorite poems I have written. I'm pleased with it.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


We go to the island to see the ducks,
but they are gone today.
The lake-dwellers we find are few:
silvery chub, some indolent water striders,
silky filaments of algae, luminous and green.

You are not disappointed.

The sun drops low in the sky, gravid
and red, limning the ripples and the
baby-blond of your hair. I taste
the thick and humid air, watch you toss
pebbles in the shimmering heat.
The sweat drips down my neck, pooling
between my shoulder blades, and I can
feel it gathering: the otherworldliness,
the here and not here, just beyond
the periphery. I know: if I look slant
into the sun, don’t breathe, and slide
my eyes, I will see what is real.

And yet, I cannot hold the focus. The essence
remains just out of reach, tantalizing:
here and not here, not here,

Not here.

Nerodia sipedon swims towards us,
undulating, serpentine.
My companions back away,
alarmed – but I have nothing
to fear from this dark gift.
Caught in its deep ineluctable gaze,
I am transfixed. Who knows
what truths may rise to greet us?

With a sinewy twist it is gone.
Released, I stumble backwards
into the glow, joyous and humbled
by this surprising, wet grace.