Poetry

11/13/2018
Snatches of the Dream
Papa Hat
—to have love,
to feel love,
to hold love,
to make love,
to make use of love,
to know love,
to magnify love,
and yet
never to fall
in—
1/31/2018
Ordained

When the poets of old
wrote of star-crossed lovers
they were partly right
and partly wrong ...

1/25/2018
Whirling

—Rumi, "Hangover Remorse"

11/28/2017
Heirlooms
upright grand piano, tilted
Grandma taught us all
that her sickly parents
sent her down
to the old-timey version
of what we all came to know
as Pic 'N' Save
with a pocketful of nickels and old-timey coupons
to buy old-timey expired food
so big girl Grandma could portion out little pieces
for her …
10/13/2017
The Name Of My Land
Trees, sunlight, and shadow in Habdur

The name of my land is Habdur.

In the speech of Habdur
hab dur means welcoming place,
welcoming space,
spacious time,
the inviting present,
the just-right here and now.
As a verb—da hab dur:
to arrive
heeding invitation,
to be born welcome.

In my land
the Habdurrin
—sugar maples …
9/15/2017
The Soul of Poetry
Please,
take me back
into the soul of poetry.
This is my prayer.

Geese fly overhead.
I hear,
I open the window to hear.
I open the door to see
countless, three long diagonal processions
one after the other.

Cold moves across my fingers.
The sun is low and red …
1/14/2017
Realization as I wash my feet
If I ended up
spending
the rest of my life
like this—
making more space
for you

in my heart,
in the moments
spent
with my breakfast,
with the dishes,
with the music,
with my feet,

—and I died
and you never did come back,

that would be
a full …
12/19/2016
The Wordless Place
On good mornings, I wake
and start with faithful work
to build the wordless place:
two mugs of coffee, two slabs of butter,
cushioned space where a body
can recognize itself.

I do not think
therefore I am not
a hero or a failure
or a laborer
or a mind …
10/8/2016
Bitter Mornings
Somehow after I concede
to the indulgence of breakfast—
that is, food and time
spent with buttered coffee
and a quiet soak in the pool
of my sadness and anger
and melancholy longing,
slow and still enough
to watch the mud settle—
I feel like myself
and I can't quite …
8/6/2016
Conspiracy
Here in the place you left, I stay
vigilant through the days of your absence
and begin to notice
a pattern: slight but unmistakable
suggestions, unlikely coincidences
among the day's arrangement of smiles,
daylight, flashes of delight.
Here in the place you left
longing, a conspiracy vast
beyond imagining takes …
7/21/2016
Rain
During this dry spell
watch this farmer.
Too much rain is depression.
Not enough
and with every passing rainless day
the smile grows hollower,
eye contact grows briefer,
and the movements of the body
grow rigid and clumsy.

In this sunny summer
I smiled,
I grew,
and now
I hope …
7/13/2016
Three Deep Breaths
Reading the news
and all the angry discussion
about which lives matter
enough to be angry about, particularly,
and which lives matter not
particularly but only beneath
a blanket statement of generalized compassion
(assuming compassion and prayer
are a zero-sum game),
I keep thinking
about my body
and about three …