03 December 2016

the blessings of blogging

How amazing it is
that when I will be reading
my work in public, even if
I have been in too much pain
to write much for months,
I can come
and find
so much wealth
to plunder.

19 September 2016

winds of autumn

maybe the wind
always swirls but
only the leaves
of autumn make
me notice

12 September 2016

if you still loved me sometimes

what I
would like
to know 
is if
still loved me
even when
you hated

all the dragonflies of summer's end

nothing will prevent 
the ending of summer

yellow dragonflies
cannot slow it
red dragonflies
cannot stop it
green dragonflies

watch it go

10 September 2016

Only touched by memory

Wasps and yellow jackets starving
in late summer, even their crawling
brings pain be still anyway
Again something settles so lightly
heavy wings brush my leg minutes
before I get the courage to look
Golden dragonfly perches, wind
flutters tickling wings until I am
clumsy only touched by memory

09 September 2016

the weight of books

the only thing that
keeps me anchored to the couch
is books, books, and books

03 September 2016

Grimly curious

we'll find out 
how many things 
on the to-do list 
can be done from 
the couch with 
only one knee 
properly elevated 
and resting

29 August 2016

Today's faint praise

Today I am grateful
my knee gave out
5 steps from my door
not further away

22 August 2016

One of those days

after the third bruise
it's time to call it a day
to prevent further harm

15 August 2016

August clouds

I can't tell you how
beautiful the clouds are now 
August goes too fast

14 August 2016

Guilty Pleasures

Tiny Adorable Dog cries alone
heart broken, and I take this chance
to lie on the deck without having
to inhale their cigarette smoke

10 August 2016

07 August 2016

06 August 2016

04 August 2016

07 July 2016

fear and rage

Already they have begun to spin
to twist the story into its usual shape
formerly familiar, suddenly terrifying
because how many others have we
dismissed because this was the only
story told:  armed black man
shots were fired              handgun
recovered at the scene.

How many times did we not know
the details not reported by police accounts
routine traffic stop      child in the car
first aid not immediately rendered
complying with police request  for
license and registration when shot
by police for moving while carrying
a declared and legally permitted weapon?

This story doesn't make sense.  I don't
 want it to be true of this incident in a place
I know and have been let alone other places
I don't know for other people innocent
of any capital  crimes.

How many times have people
gotten away with murder hiding
behind this traditional narrative
we have accepted, all important
facts warped to fit its shape, slicing
off the overhanging edges of truth
with the  careless knife of power?

How terrifying this is, this proof
that even if you do everything right -
young, employed steadily, out with 
your family getting ready to celebrate
your birthday - if you are a black man, 
this is how that day in your life can end:  
you dead because someone 
felt threatened because you 
were doing what they 
told you to do, what you 
were supposed
to do, so what
are we supposed
to do now?

14 June 2016


thunder, lightning flash
clouds so low they brush your face
summer is coming

08 June 2016

19 May 2016

unsteady walks

no one cards for this
so easy to be drunk on spring
don't know my limit

13 May 2016

Feeling grey

Green is bursting forth
Missed week of walks in the woods
leave us feeling grey

07 May 2016

He asks is this fun

We are on the train
because he wanted to ride.
He asks, "Is this fun?"

05 May 2016

sun dogs

I am glad these things
have names even if I won't
recall what they are

04 May 2016

wisdom here

when you watch, you can't
listen, when you listen, you
can't watch: wisdom here

03 May 2016

signs of spring

roadside tennis shoe
always alone, while pairs and
signs of spring abound

02 May 2016

01 May 2016

full of hopes

Don't give up for dead
trees that haven't bloomed quite yet
May is full of hopes

30 April 2016

29 April 2016

early days

I like the early days
of budding spring when blooms
are hidden splashed random

28 April 2016

27 April 2016


  • Creator
  • Future Seer
  • Present Doer
  • Fire Bringer
  • Savior of Man
  • Defier of Gods
  • Consequence Sufferer
  • Helper Even In Chains
  • First Civil Rights Activist?

26 April 2016

25 April 2016

23 April 2016

is hope like this?

the way the tree appears
completely without life
today but could sprout buds
tomorrow if you wait

22 April 2016

return of shade

tree-cast bone shadows
grow into shade once again
spring comes with intent

21 April 2016

will spring come to my tree this year

lonely sound 
of bare tree
in constant
each other
like children
left in the back 
seat too long

20 April 2016


for Liz

haze of green new growth
outlining Mississippi
River banks: golden

19 April 2016

when it is enough (exercise and chronic pain)

Ask yourself,
"Is is enough?"

and if you think
"I could do more,"

stop before 
it is too much.

18 April 2016

view from the deck floor

plane flies close to the moon
birds and frogs check in

summer breeze rattles winter 
bare bones of trees
unencumbered by new growth

clouds drift by at different
speeds at different heights

tiny bugs dance between me 
and the sky      the sun sets
with little fanfare and the moon
grows brighter

can anyone 
ever do just 
one thing

17 April 2016

winter bare bones

breeze whispers summer
while rattling the winter
bare bones of my tree

13 April 2016

11 April 2016


we watch buds sprout past
one dead leaf that won't let go
spring is bittersweet

10 April 2016


every warm day
in April should be treasured
frost comes tomorrow

09 April 2016

how do you look away

Seasonal Clearance!
Condensation Closeout!
End of Season Sale on Snow!
Everything Must Go!

The sky is using
all remaining
winter inventory 

Small, hard, pellet snow, check!
Medium, dry, shaken snow globe snow, check!
Medium, fluffy, sedately swirling snow, check!
Big, wet, sloppy snow, check!

How do you look away from this 
beautiful spring chaos?

08 April 2016

the first snow (April 8)

tiny hard styrofoam pellet snow 
tapping down en masse
shows through darkened glass 
as frantic darker grey on gray
and piles up in the grass

07 April 2016

when living in the darkness

She talks about how there is no
faith tradition for evangelicals
to follow in the times when one
is living in the dark.  True.
Disciplines and rituals aren't
for evangelicals.  Emotions are more
important and true than
"smells and bells", and where
does that leave those
deep in dark depression
who feel
False.  This
is why it's important to tell true stories
of our times in the darkness,
for truth is light and hope, and hope
in the midst of darkness is
sometimes the only
gift of love we
can give
each other.

06 April 2016

Wondering how much sleep will be enough

How many nights of better sleep will be 
enough to make up for eleven years of 
not enough?  How many nights will my 
brain take to reset and my body to heal 
and finally 
feel rested?

05 April 2016

04 April 2016

not lost yet

snow floating past buds
on winter bare trees whispers
we have not lost yet

03 April 2016


we watch through windows
rain falls from clouds far away
on someone else's heads?

02 April 2016

01 April 2016

reasons for the quest

to sleep, perchance to dream
and to remember dreams,
to remember anything at all
really, to clear out some of this
fog, to be able to choose to live
in the moment instead of being
reduced to it, to see more clearly
and be present more fully, to
be able to cope and not cry all
the time over nothing and every
thing, to be part of community
to serve instead of being served
or hiding or running and stumbling
to be more fully awake to the
world as the seasons turn and I
grow older with the world because
even though it's scary and possibly
dangerous, maybe this time it will
work, and I can begin to heal if
I do not give up and lose all hope

30 March 2016

Trees are weeping

Trees are weeping sap
from all their broken places
winter's losing ground

17 March 2016

another email with no heartbeat

What do you do when
you get another
email about a
nephew you will not
have the chance to know

because your sister
has had another
miscarriage, and you
have no way to give
her any comfort?

I write a poem.
It doesn't really
help anything, but
I still have to write
to make space for tears.

09 March 2016


purple dusk sky rests
on bare, weary branches, but
spring is coming soon

not yet

purple dusk sky pierced
by sharp, black winter branches
spring is not here yet

22 February 2016

How many people does it take to change a light bulb if one of them is me?

I am wondering if I should call my elderly neighbor the retired cop over to hold the chair while I try to change the ceiling lightbulb. I'm not sure it would actually help. Just because someone else is here does not mean I will be less likely to get dizzy or lose my balance and fall off the chair, and I'd feel terrible if I squashed and injured him if I fell. These are not the things I though I'd be concerned about in my mid thirties.  Sigh.

15 February 2016

16 January 2016

the wrong foot

I hate
how an accidentally
too-long hike can destroy
my health for half a year and
already be eating
into this year,