Sad. Little. Like a peeled orange on the ground. Citrus Fingers. The squeeze of juice and pulp through teeth. Old hands don't understand. Not supposed to. But could. No sunset. Still ends. Old guard faded navy blue wiped over the skycolor. Black tree silhouettes. Instruments, strings moving silent. Old pictures watch over. Voices through the walls. Voices over distances. Not hate. Age. Repentance fruit. The steady ticking of a bedside alarm clock. Like a timebomb ticktocktick.

Morning. Defeats. All of them.
Morning will hold you. Cradled like newborn calves. And show you the mountainside draped in herself.


I was instructed to write about what I saw:

After many years alone,
After many dinners at restaurants alone,
An old man adopted a little girl,
Loved her like he loved his books,
Shelves and shelves of old spines,
That bent and creaked like his,
They were his brothers.
He would sit beside her bed and read,
Story after StoryafterStory,
Till he was sure she was dreaming.
And when she grew up,
He parceled out all the land he had acquired,
From being so old,
Ten acres given for every year he had a family,
And he separated them with crossing lines,
Of steadfast spruce trees.
In the coattails of youth and the height of beauty,
She began to steal away,
With her own lovers - like his books,
Each with Story after StoryafterStory,
Till she found her Story,
And sold all the acres of the old man's love,
But the one his house was on,
And as the year passed for him to give that away as well,
He tore through the old wooden floor,
And in the center of the room he planted,
The last of the trees he had used as borders.
Their roots sucked deep from his love,
And when the old man passed away,
Everything was left to her and her new family,
But the one spot where the tree grew.
Years added one by one,
Like so many coats of paint,
The old man's house was torn down,
The land used for everything imaginable,
All under the sight of the tree.
It saw a boy's first kiss,
A marriage,
A new condominium
An old condominium,
A seemingly endless strawberry patch,
And then nothing,
But the dew and those driving by,
On the old highway beside,
So in that way,
The old man who had been taken up by the roots,
Had many more families than he had ever imagined,
And he wasn't even sad,
When after too many years for anyone to care,
His last bit of love was torn down,
And used for more books,
Exactly like those he had collected,
And in that way he was full,
And nothing but thankful.


If together our lives are not filled with glamour,
Endless passion,
Greatest sacrifice,
May our love collect like rain,
Refilling stone bird baths,
And may we dunk our heads,
When we need to,
And wash over with devotion,
Like so many childhood baptisms,
Till light fade,
And arms encircle,
Till Rest come.


The running desert,
Calls with its chains and its toils,
To the desperately safe,
To take away pleasures,
And find another mind,
Like the crashing of cymbals,
Cacophonous bliss,
The lizards forking tongue splits open,
All you thought you knew,
The desert,
Mother of discovery,
Will bring you whatever you care to see,
When your bones offer up last,
The life that so strove not to cling.


To lay down,
In burning rain,
Under the deep red,
Rusting porch groans,
Muscles standing out,
Like tight-packed thread,
We're not even trying,
Resting here,
The fat rain falling through the cracks,
Decorating his highrise cheeks,
He who would die in the war,
A war we are to stop,
Or allow,
We are the verdicts,
On your children,
Your loves and futures,
And it feels so light!
Wading through decisions,
That breed tornados,
And we'll laugh until innocence,
Leaves tears where the rain fell,
As we watch from indoors,
The boys splashing in the streets,
With what they are just trying to figure out themselves,
We are just trying to figure it out ourselves.

Gentle Sheets

I love you,
It was whispered,
It was summertime.
They didn't think of cliche,
Or childish or awkward,
But of You and You,
Mixing and not losing,
Until We emerged with the smoke,
From the open flue.
And it wasn't a game,
It sat between them like a strange child,
Big-eyed and Indian-styled,
As their movements came together,
And expressed like adults,
What only children really understand,
As much as we do understand while we're here,
On this wonderful,
Close-eyed Earth.
I love you too.
The sparrows are beautiful.

Night Lights

When sleep comes,
We emit signals,
Out past the streetlights and into the sky,
That bounce off the atmosphere,
And find their way all over the earth,
To everyone else,
And in this way we feel everything,
One a bright red warm,
Another blue serene,
So before I go,
I thinkthinkthink,
So much about you,
So much I hope it threads through,
My whole message,
The secret language of why,
And who I am,
Then when you seefeel,
The threads of yourself in me,
We won't miss a beat.


The red wine,
Brushing against your unpainted lips,
Is my favorite part of the night,
Where we stay in and unplug the phone,
Grab strings and bows and places,
Music pushing out and over the balcony,
Spilling down the building and out the alley,
When our eyes aren't closed and wrapped in,
They meet in long sure vibrations,
Dancing while standing still,
This is why we survived this long,
This is how we were found,
This is meandyou.


The slow curve,
Rises and falls,
Slows and bends,
Like the lightest trace of pencil,
On new sketchpad,
From faint to dark,
The feeling rises as the sentiment solidifies,
And the harmony,
Nothing broken,
Nothing left behind,
It's the love of two,
That draws and shapes,
Flaws and breaks,
Fade away in the bow and embrace,
Of us two.

Ear Test

A silence,
A silence,
Then all the strings at once sound,
Dane and mold and form new,
Waves that curve around and through,
Mothers sisters strangers salamanders,
Over rivers and into caves,
Circling aroudn the ears of elephants,
Emmas Elmers Elizabeths Edwards,
All the time,
We hear all these things,
Like static they join our frame,
Until we pause,
And then euphonious,
Glorias Geralds Harolds Hannahs,
Feel it,
And before silence a bit of the answer shows,
Draped and cloaked and vague,
But sure and certain,
To those who see,
Do you see?

Catching and Letting Go

The sound,
On an early weekday morning,
Of your breath flying out of your mouth,
(Too fast no time)
Yet it's so calm and measured and perfect,
Like the surrounding wind before it storms,
The grey sky and the sunset behind it,
The motionless fleet of cars in driveways,
And it all wants to drive up and stop,
RIght in my face,
The Big Thing it's gonna happen,
And you breath in,
And it all goes back to order.

I'll never get over,
How much you are when you're nothing.

Connecting Transit Lines

The lonely crowded,
Greyhound (trademark) bus line,
Runs down to Topeka,
And I take it between here and home,
Between here and reality,
Jostling right and left and up and left again,
Sleeping against a persistant metal window lining,
Strike up conversations in the day,
Like matches on the side of a Diamond (trademark) box,
To burn down in between the seats,
And smell for hours in the silence,
Every pretty girl that gets on is the right one,
Shaking my head doesn't make me any less caught up,
In hoping that what I see,
Moving in the trees outside,
On the license plates of cars beside,
In the bowl of light above the ticket window,
Isn't long gone here.