Thursday, April 30, 2009


Jennifer has great news: The arrival of Owen River Little! Wow!!!! You rock, woman!

And on Monday, I received my contributor copy of the JMWW Anthology Volume 3.

With works by Jessica Anya Blau, CM Burroughs, Jimmy Chen, Jon Morgan Davies, William R. Duell, Charmi Keranen, Julia LaSalle, Sean Lovelace, Lisa Markowitz, Susan O'Doherty, Pete Pazmino, Lynn L. Shattuck, Paul Silverman, Charles Talkoff, Bryan S. Wang, Martin Willitts, Jr., and Joseph Young.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Catching Up

There's a purposeful walking

To the outskirts!

And thereafter

His simple insistence on sleeping

(Completely unadorned.)

I started this poem on Saturday, but I got distracted by the weather and gardening and birds and whatnot. I was going to finish it today, but incredibly sad news arrived this a.m. My Aunt Kathy took her life last night. I'll simply say that she was one of the kindest women I've ever known and I'm heartbroken.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Day 24

The dead aren't coming back to save us

But who's waiting?

My father, I've noticed, was
Much taller when he was alive

Lately, I've been walking
Back and forth across the lawn

It's shrinking

I'm leaving it to the vines

And the house for the chipmunks

The dead aren't coming back to save us

But still they come

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Water Maser

A florid psychosis
Gathering steam

The House on the Rock
And her terra cotta windpipes


He flushed the gutters
And grilled burgers

The soles of his feet

(Of an evening)

Black as loam

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Day 22

It's a brisk business
This skinning

The bark from live trees

A plastic card falls
From your wallet

The birth right of refusal

The soup you've squandered
Beneath moldering sleeves

These aren't your arms

But pass the ketchup


The smell of my son
Is like the smell of a field

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Day 20, A little late...

Matthew 13:44-45

In this telling it was a woman
who had wandered out into
a field and uncovered an
invaluable treasure. It might
have been sapphires. It might
have been pearls. Apparently
words were exchanged. Some
treasures have voices. Nothing
is known of the dialogue, but
years later the woman was still
unraveling her garments, looking
for pocket change.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Day 19

(I'm struggling here, becoming more and more fragmented, making less and less sense, etc. But I want to trudge on and hopefully have something at least to start to work with. I'm starting to look at this endeavor less as poetry and more as idea generation.)

It's pure centipede
Enough feet for dragging

She wants a home

I understand they're quiet
The Predator Drones

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Day 18

(Trying to get back in the swing of things. Needs more wine.)

We've undressed

The pleasantries a
Substrate of thin

Spider vine pitches
Coming low and



I've been lost in family for a couple of days. I might get back to writing today; I might not.

I've had a good visit with my brother Andy. He's heading back for California today. It's been three years since we've seen each other. His aphasia is still holding him hostage, plus, he can't hold enough disparate ideas in his head to play a game of Sudoku. (This knowledge hit me hard. He was a computer programmer.) He doesn't always hear all the syllables of the words we say and he continues to confuse his pronouns. Our conversations are interesting. However, ten years into this ordeal of having a stroke, he has comes to terms with his life. Physically he looks great. I suppose I might need to catch up and come to terms also.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


I guess I have nada today. My brothers came to visit this evening and I'm still working. I'll try and catch up tomorrow.

Limited Resources

PLAINTIFF'S ATTORNEY: I'm going to explain this to you. Before this accident, before you got injured, what were you able to do, other than work, that you now don't do anymore or can't do because of your injuries? That's her question.
THE WITNESS: Boom boom. I don't do that no more. Sex, what else?
THE WITNESS: Sex and work, that's all I did. I cooked and cleaned once in a while.
PLAINTIFF'S ATTORNEY: Did you have any hobbies?
THE WITNESS: I had kids.

Q. Have you been able to have sex?
A. It doesn't get up no more. I tried to do it with that juice, that Cialis.
Q. Were you having any problems with that before this accident?
A. No, I just had a baby.
Q. And that would have been three years before this accident?
A. Yes, it was working fine.

Texas Again

Q. And what do you do for the pain when it -- when it comes?
A. Apply heat and take some -- not aspirin, but pain -- over-the-counter killers.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Untitled 15

(I love The BBC science articles.)

Against this galaxy a woman
Measuring earthshine

A mirror-like reflection
Bouncing back

From the poet's hand

Light dims and
Reddens as it passes

Over dry land

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Across This Reality A Dark Penciled Line

(Andy, my California brother, is visiting this week, along with my niece and nephew. He wants to know why Indiana is so cold. Another beginning of something, I guess.)

The August we failed
To notice Watergate

And dug a trough large
Enough to swallow Father

I encountered Darwin and
The Wallace Divide

Monday, April 13, 2009

Untitled 13

(So, I like what I have, but I'm falling quickly back into my old ways. I can't bear to add the wrong thing and ruin it. Man, am I going to have a lot of work to do come May.)

It's just a shadow

This gestalt that falls
Across the face of the moon

The Nest

For scale.
Hands by Charmi & Chris.

For detail.

Marie gave us the rundown on hummingbird nests. They're made out of spider webs and then dotted with lichen to make a disguise. I tried to poem it, but it needs work.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Untitled 12

(We were salamander skunked today, but someone brought a hummingbird nest in to the Nature Center.)

Say the hummingbird's
A home wrecker

How else to account
For the missing orbs

She'll carry it off from the porches

A touch of lichen on
The windows and it feels

Just like yours


My kids are mired in tradition -- and candy. The Easter baskets absolutely must arrive. (They have.) Tom thought we ought to do an Easter egg hunt, also, but finally we have something new. A salamander hunt. Our naturalist friend at Potato Creek, Marie, needs salamanders. So, this evening we're Easter picnicking and salamander hunting at PC. If you need something to do later....

Otherwise, have a wonderful Easter and try to send me some poetry writing vibes. I seem to be fading off into a springtime nap or something.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Untitled 11

(Although I'm running short on excuses, today I'll blame low biorhythms. It sounds good.)

I have become assorted

A blue jar in the window
Harboring sharps and fines

And a feather

Friday, April 10, 2009

Orbital Debris

(More fragments. Jeez. On a side note, I saw a couple of teenagers with a walleye they pulled out of Baugo Creek yesterday. I knew the walleyes were in the river, but it's the first one I've seen from the creek. Those eyes are just amazing.)

I suppose it's statistical
The incidence of sapphires

Dripping dark in your well

I'm counting backwards
Past twenty-three empires

And the decolonization
Of the inner realm


Clayton has had a poem accepted by Makeout Creek! Congrats!!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Opening Remarks

(Rats. Another non-inspired day. This is definitely one way to make the month seem long. I'm going to need to become passionate enough about something to write about it one of these times...)

It's a casualty of the mind
to think death before sunshine

(I said sunshine)

The Amish horses, for instance
aren't dead in their fields

They're dreaming

I could have been a Budweiser

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

I Should Have Taken A Nap

(Tired today. But still I few lines to start something with when I begin revising in May.)

The ice is free flowing

There's no need to
Save the packaging

The ports of your departure
Have been submerged

A Brief Word From Our Sponsor

It's just the animals and me this week. Gene and Jojo have traveled to D.C. for Jojo's last high school spring break. I'm trying to keep the dogs off the couch. No go.
And I took a short trip up to Kalamazoo last night to see Tom play.
This sculpure is outside the new art building.
I like the colors.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Day 7

My landlord is dying

The City of God segues into
The half-life of urban decay

(100,000 years out from the homeland)

She knows you can't be trusted
With the myna birds, but keep singing

The coyotes, I heard,
Were the first to be tamed

Monday, April 06, 2009


Naoko has had two poems accepted at Rune! Congrats!!

Untitled Day 6

The blue ash cat
Licking the blade

Of grass has captured
A hummingbird cumulus

Our windows are cracked

It's late September

Frame for me then
A peach pollen moon

We're still rising

Sunday, April 05, 2009


(Tom's 21st Birthday, the merest beginnings of a poem that has nothing to do with him, poor fellow. I could have at least written him a birthday poem! Or not.)

Pry from me
An open-handed moment

Tire iron and fist
Full of nails for mending

Those spinnaker hearts
Caught sailing

Into the branches
Of wintering trees

(I'm feeling better about this process. I like the idea of writing crap, but then moving on the next day to more crap, instead of spending months thinking about one thing. If I can make it through the month I'll have a tidy pile to sift through, with maybe some things to keep.)

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Horse Gentian

(The music stopped long enough to find a few lines.)

Beginning brilliant

Cirrus minus and swish of tail

We are distantly related

I didn't want to stare

Into your unbranchedness

Your fine covering pubescence

Others, certainly, have tried
And failed

Save the pieces

Bluff and bleed


Shit, I got nothing -- but Jojo playing the piano all day, everything from Jesus Christ Superstar to The Corpse Bride -- and a cat meowing and clawing at my door. I feel violent.

Friday, April 03, 2009

One-Tenth of the Way Through

(Another partial poem. Isn't this fun? No, it isn't. It's plain old work. I hope by the end of the month I'll feel differently.)

The woman in the leopard
Print dress wants you to believe

It's all natural

The American lion much larger
13,000 years ago

(And living)

Long legs capable of chasing
Down its prey

I believe in extinction

And the futility of calling
God good

In the particular

Or of calling

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Dark Matter

(So, there are going to be a lot of partial poems here. I never liked pressure...)

Grandfather cut timber at Fort Stewart
And kept a knife in his pocket, scoring
Oranges into sections before carefully
Peeling away their skin.

There's a salivary gland called the parotid
That runs diretly below the ear. I envision
Communication. Pavlov's ears

Beginning to twitch whenever dogs
Were near.

Still An April Fool

Most of the time, when I look at my poetry, it looks like something someone wrote with a fat kindergarten crayon, while everyone else is writing with fine point pens. I've tried adjusting the font, but it doesn't seem to help. If only switching writing instruments would solve all my poetic problems!

Mark has posted a couple of poems.

And if you'd like a writing prompt, you can check out the Poetic Asides link I stole from Sarah.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

National Poetry Writing Month

A little motivation never hurt. Louise is participating in National Poetry Writing Month. Her opening volley is pretty good. Maybe you'd like to give it a go? I'll throw something out from the dark closet of rough, rough drafts, too.


Maybe the caterpillars
Will pay for the dying.

Grandmother is waiting
For the women with Scotch

Tape to escort her home,
Turn the compost, doctor

The rugs. I'm waiting
For the genius who stole the

Big Boy to come calling.
I'll say there was a painted

Circle on the roadway,
That I observed a puddle

Of blood and a tennis shoe,
But no nine-foot tall

Bare-footed statue, no
Miracle white Clorox-

Dispensing love.