Friday Poem

Dust to Dust There are women left who have no rage in their wrists As they slice greens or skin tomatoes towards mealtime. Their husbands are at the beer-gardens with Family money – what would amount to a bag of beans Or soap bars. There are women who keep both lips quietly touching, Even as…

Thursday Poem

Tiny Bird The urge to be a tiny bird upon a tiny limb, maybe a bridled titmouse standing on its spidery feet, not a big guy who falls with a resounding thump and bruises sidewalks and pastures, sinks in river mud to the waist. If my feet were spears I would have descended to a…

Wednesday Poem

Afternoon Tea I look forward to offering, Glimpses of my land, To our foreign neighbors – Our white-wide-eyed friends, Laughing at jokes private to myself, Knowing a couple of things, Or more than they, do. But when I am your wife, Second half of your life, I falter, I don’t know why, But I cease…

Tuesday Poem

Morning, Jamaica Plain The swan is a white star drifting across the onyx pond, the phosphorescent neck curving between the black altitudes of trees, in the held silence of balance: bird in the shroud and bunting of water. On the roadway, drivers stare from their bright wild cars, glassed inside their confused galaxies, as this…

Monday Poem

“In erratic times one cannot be too attentive, too ready to stand or duck.” —A. Skutočné Politics what’s real depends upon where a thing lands— how far along it is from ultraviolet to infrared (from invisible to invisible), but on the spectrum of real, it might be said if it’s a matter of life-or-death I’m…

Sunday Poem

A Happy Birthday This evening I sat by an open window and read till the light was gone and the book was no more than a part of the darkness. I could easily have switched on a lamp, but I wanted to ride this day down into night, to sit alone and smooth the unreadable…

Saturday Poem

Art does not reproduce the visible, it makes visible.                                                        –Paul Klee With Two Camels and One Donkey May we walk into our lives as into a watercolor, grounded…

Wednesday Poem

— “A friend of mine found this photograph in a shoe box in his Grandmother’s attic. I wonder if those quotation marks imply what I think they do[;] by the look on their faces, I would say they do.”   — The Gaily Grind Aunty Mary and Her “Friend” Ruth, 1910. You wear the faded…

Tuesday Poem

To the woman I saw today who wept in her car Woman, I get it. We are strangers, but I know the heart is a hive and someone has knocked yours from its high branch in your chest and it lays cracked and splayed, spilling honey all over the ground floor of your gut and…

Sunday Poem

Hummingbirds Driving the perfect fuel, their thermonuclear wings, into the hot layer of the sugar’s chromosphere, hummingbirds in Egypt might have visited the tombs of the Pharaohs when they were fresh in their oils and perfumes. The pyramids fitted, stone slab against slab, with little breathers, narrow slits of light, where a few esters, a…

Thursday Poem

Waiting for the Bus All along the road from Bulawayo to Gwanda or Matopos or Vic Falls; at bus-stops, lay-bys, under shadeless trees, the people wait beside their bundled things. All day long they wait, and sometimes all night too, and the next day – anxiously waiting. Waiting for the public transport to stop and…

Thursday Poem

Micah’s Prophesy . Time subsides and you fall back into the hammock of another easy truth. There are so many ways to disguise this. One reigning idea dictates what you will think, so you go blundering from one war to another, one rape or abuse to another. My dream for you is clothed with shadows.…

Monday Poem

Desert I wake sometimes at night, mouth dry as the bottom of a cast iron skillet in equatorial sun thinking, water! imagining its absolute absence yesterday on the iron bridge I stopped dead center, leaned and watched the slow river wrap itself around a rock as rivers do, embracing  the stubborn thing with eddies and waves as…

Sunday Poem

Judicial Temperament Thurgood whispers in Sonia’s ears              You know they said the same things about me? Master two languages, graduate at the top They still sneer and drawl about how ‘qualified’ you are.” Si, asi siempre es. she sighs. The only quality the senators want is a mirror on the…

Saturday Poem

senses of heritage my grandpa waz a doughboy from carolina the other a garveyite from lakewood I got talked to abt the race & achievement bout color & propriety/ nobody spoke to me about the moon daddy talked abt music & mama bout christians my sisters/ we always talked & talked there waz never quiet…

Friday Poem

Emergency Measures I take Saturday’s unpopulated trains, sitting at uncontagious distances, change at junctions of low body count, in off-hours, and on national holidays especially, shun stadia and other zones of efficient kill ratio, since there is no safety anymore in numbers. I wear the dull colors of nesting birds, invest modestly in diverse futures,…

Thursday Poem

Reading Moby-Dick at 30,000 Feet At this height, Kansas is just a concept, a checkerboard design of wheat and corn . no larger than the foldout section of my neighbor’s travel magazine. At this stage of the journey . I would estimate the distance between myself and my own feelings is roughly the same as…

Wednesday Poem

Good Bones Life is short, though I keep this from my children. Life is short, and I’ve shortened mine in a thousand delicious ill-advised ways in a thousand deliciously ill-advised ways, I’ll keep from my children. The world is at least fifty percent terrible, and that’s a conservative estimate, though I keep this from my…

Tuesday Poem

 . . . life which does not give the preference to any other life, of any                   previous period, which therefore prefers its own existence . . .                                                                               —Ortega y Gasset Walt Whitman at Bear Mountain Neither on horseback nor seated, But like himself, squarely on two feet, The poet of death and lilacs…

Sunday Poem

On Being Time A femtosecond? O, that’s very clever. A galactic year? What dreamers you are. My favorite is soon. What goddamn brilliance, What staggering audacity. Even I cannot measure the femtoseconds of soon, It’s all just hope and promise, The infinite never between will and is, Hello! It’s me! Your friendly old Common Arbitrator…