Regular Poem: Coiled

8 Oct

i’m coiled
i think at first
like a taut spring
ready metal
with a sharp point on the end
just aching
any moment
any moment
and i’ll shoot

i realize
as the day descends

i’m a plastic slinky
stretching out
wearing out
with an ungraceful flexibility
laughing into the night

Regular Poem: It’s a Good Thing

8 Oct

it’s a good thing
i work out every day
i wouldn’t have the physical strength
it’s a good thing
i work the job i do
i wouldn’t have the stamina
it’s a good thing i’m a christian
i wouldn’t have the patience
it’s a good
a good thing

“i’m going to tell you
i haven’t told anybody
i haven’t told you
i might cry”

and he starts in
with a story i’ve heard
a million times
the same way

“she was the love
of my life
what happened
what happened”

it’s a good thing
there’s beer
it’s a good thing
i’m me and
not someone else

i haven’t heard
in years
but it comes back to me
muscle memory
and always the beer
and tears

(i think later of
the dead blackbird
in my driveway that morning
of drunk old men
in the bathroom)

and he starts in
but he cuts out
and then it’s just stories

“we just had revolvers then”
“what the hell was that guy’s name”
all the same old same old
with red teary bleary eyes

and i’m there and not
it’s a good thing
i love him
it’s a good thing
i prayed beforehand
it’s a good thing
i show up
every time
a good lot of things

Regular Poem: A Smell Of Fall

16 Aug

A smell of fall
weighs lightly on a cool breeze–
a whisper, a secret, a prophecy, a ghost,
and it’s a little smell,
miniature but
The day continues–oblivious–with its humidity,
aching heat and stretching sky,
proud and stupid:
summer still, summer still
the sun says, laughing.
But the night swallows it–
a yawn and a calm.

Regular Poem: Sleeping Beauty

31 May

But can you imagine
the sleep hangover chica had
when she woke up from that curse–

disoriented, back aching,
bra grown into her flesh,
contacts stuck at strange angles in her eyes,
hair and bobby pins no longer in sync,
Lana Del Ray stuck in her head,
ravenous no doubt,
8600 notifications on her phone?

“Thanks for waking me, Phil, but
before we go on with our happy ending
I HAVE GOT to go the little princesses room.

“Also, what year is it?”

We’ve all been there
in small increments
on a Sunday afternoon
except it’s a dog giving you
true love’s kiss,
and instead of a fairy tale wedding
to get gone to
there’s a church book study you’re late for.

But it’s still like,
“I need 15 pancakes,
and also
what year is it?”

Regular Poem: Granny House

30 Apr

People apologize

for leaving behind their
things, belongings, accoutrements,
but I’ve grown accustomed
to the custom
and the customary
I have pieces of your china
and pieces of your heart
along with me,
smells of you and
sounds of you
to adorn the wood paneling.

It wouldn’t be
a granny house
without echoes
of all the former residents.
The nature of a granny house
is not transitory or nomadic
but a constant
in the lives of its
transitory nomadic

It carries the weight
in its tiles
embraces in its carpet
remembers in its dust.

To be the woman
living in the
granny house
is to be the bearer
of history–
like a scribe or bard
but of things and feelings.

One doesn’t choose a granny house life.
One is chosen
by the house itself
on the merits of her own
granny ways
tested and tried,
given riddles and enigmas and clogged drains
until the point of death
and found

granny enough
to shoulder
an old house
and its ghosts.

Regular Poem: Goals

29 Apr

too many goals can choke a person
even little ones
like grass in a flower bed
(well not exactly like grass
because in that simile
the goals are the grass so
overgrowing a flowerbed would be good
because you’d have all goals
and flowers are just pretty weeds
anyway what i was saying
was that having too many goals
can overextend a person
use all the wind on the
small sails
and then the big sail
is flopping alone with nothing
(maybe that’s not the best
metaphor either
i don’t know
thing one
about sailing)
i’m just going to
focus on
being able to make a decent pancake
and then maybe i’ll move on to my next life goal

Regular Poem: Gladness

29 Apr

I’ve been trying
to smile more,
to find–or to recognize–
those small simple things
that elicit positive responses:
silly birds, beautiful architecture,
lovely singing voices, exuberant dog kisses.

I spend my days
forsaking anger–
or trying
to replace it with gladness.

It’s a superficial gladness
sometimes, but obedience
is a chore–
like laundry, one must
keep up on it
or just piles and piles
of soiled linens
clutter the entire house,
choking and stinking.

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