Nightly News

I saw a child on the nightly news Playing with a toy inside a room being used As a shelter from The Bomb’s long burning fuse The mother was there being interviewed ‘Cause war had broken out all over the place And when the microphone tilted toward her face She spoke about the future of […]

When The Black Earth Fails

I was beside myself So I called Missa Him outside for a bath She was trusting in the cold long light And the shafts came low across the yard like heralds with shinning shields Afterward, I sat beneath a tree and cried I cried as Missa Him looked into my face But I was not […]


I wonder when you knew you were sick Not just the normal stuff that followed you around like rags and bones, dry lumps along the road … those friendly enemies, the ones you contemplated after the fact No, a different sort of bug, not a bullet or bomb, not the gaping, frozen forms in the […]

Two Women Over Three Days

Jan asked me about opium and I only hit the main points, the 21st century American points, the kind where dry trees explode and sons and daughters move into closets I didn’t get into the bad stuff, it wasn’t appropriate for her needs, she only wanted encouragement like a map But then I woke up […]

Open Poem For Jan

Jan and I are like broken toys in rusty trunks and blowing dust, a ghost town of dust sometimes we can barely cope, and then we focus and see that all the old wood comes from the Argos and the knots and holes look like unknown victims from the wild days the gospel church has […]

The Cat

She died last night at about two in the morning.  There was no music, no last second visitors offering redemption.  Her oxygen kept going off and I listened hard to separate the sound of the oxygen coming out the little plugs in her nose and the sound of her faint breathing.  There was a slight […]

This Beloved Earth

When I was younger, nature was something I took for granted.  It was eternal in rain and green grass and the fox’s scream.  My great-grandparents owned a place called Bull’s Creek Ranch.  It sat on both sides of the river and was about 4,000 acres.  Over the years my grandfather sold off much of the […]

Lone Wolf

Art motivates my life.  I goof on it at most moments, regardless of where I am, what I am doing.  The only time this is not true is when I’m in real trouble.  If I think I’m dying or in a tight spot somewhere, my brain empties of typical thoughts and my muscles and bones […]

Yes, We All Breathe

I forget Baltimore is in Maryland That birds are made of light in the Parisian sky … that the child waits bereft upon the sand Can it be So many incurious things … driving away, eating MREs, dragging the boat along the shore, father’s mud stuffed into my veins, everything I forget Can it be […]