Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The tag.

I remember hair in the sky.

Near the vulgarities being spoken to walls,
Painted hissing on.

Some of them were smiling,

As if we were put there,
And had to look,

And deserved the kind of gaiety

A bare green wall could never muster.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Dust jacket,

The soul of purpose is there...but it drops.
The soul of infinite floating birds and things is there...

But it drops.

Every book's dust jacket you look in, every watercolor of a bird you look at--
They're unified by their constancy.
It is a word for a thing.

And the hammock of a shoulder carried it as a baby.
And the brow consternated to bear it.

And I remember you when your twin and sugar slept.

And the soul of purpose is there.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Bad fruit.

For Jeanette Winterson, obviously.

Apples just don't taste like they used to.

Like they did in the

I mean, aloof.

Like when, impardoned,  a wanter needed something very specific.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Lapis lazuli.

The girl found a cobra;
A boy with a resilient brow

Soon the sunny grass will look picture-perfect.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A renaissance diet.

Drawing must have the impact of surgery.  The blued impressive line must follow
A path
Of creation.  

And it must swallow all the indelicate 

Objects the hands refuses to reveal:

Undigested almonds, and a bleached sweetness and
The tumescent house key 
To what

Or, less delicately still--if.

Friday, July 5, 2013

City rain.

I know you probably make it rain.

Each field and streaked window has to be taught on its own
How to be drenched--

The downpour comically
Mimicked by some crickets and

Stiff sabers of grass.

I know, I eat from your wet hands--
even dirt. And

When I lay my ear alongside it, the city stands back,
as if expecting to learn

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Reflection pool.

Poor is poor;

Look how marvelous, the moon
Makes all the gold seem worthless.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


I spy! I have been immobilized by the things I see.

The knuckles of rock I've climbed across,
And the welts of black on the birch

From our lawn.

I wonder if I could just listen to a song,
And have the tempo dictate me while it
Was going on.

Now, I am moving ahead. The current of expectation
Is at least similar to the current of the rock garbage,

Similar to the wood.

When I was a kid I used to thrust my hand at you, and say,
"Make way!"

I was part sail.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013


What a generous survey! It encounters us, sideways,
Breath fogging the candied windows:

We may not be wise, the way you think of people.
But honey splits from us like we were hive-cox,

And our skin blooms like the brilliant bits of our

Whenever our dogs pass through;

We say to ourselves, "Okay, now I get it,
Look at what this sarcasm of light

Surrounds you
To change."

Tuesday, June 11, 2013


You should fall in love with an iris.
It becomes you.

Otherwise what?  Service?

It is magical and crippling to see the likelihoods of beach kids who grow up
On the shore, by boats.

It is as if their childhoods were mere movies showing on the waves,
About the future.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Early summer.

I wasn't always this young.
But gradually my skin learned to smooth over
My insides.  I look at myself in the mirror

And see a stiff overcoat that after a decade of winters
Learned its intended form.

I'll say this several thousand times--
But each time I say it, it grows decreasingly true

I used to be old.
There is no belly anymore
My hands learned to push it away, and the
Sharp pains I thought I felt were like religious feelings,
All unreliable.

I have absconded, too, with everything valuable.  The lights,
The wine in the cellar and the miscellany--all of it catalogued
But only in the way a desperate imagination remembers things,

Counting them on the fingers once they're missing
There are no ladders to climb and look; I stole them
No lines
Just green spots:

The map of my feet left in urgent space
You will feel less inclined to
Ever make anything in that dimpled mold
Again. You won't find any sugar or pictures--ran the faucets and
Drew cross-hair squares on the walls.
Beside the warm wire beaters and the towel damp with cake
I came and saw the sense that everything was

Filled in--I needed only to replace things
With perfect absences.

I will only say this once:
It was here where I started
Everything is so marvelous out here in the jade evening clippings
Where I am now and swing across the
Fence like a kid's baseball

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Maltese Falcon.

Everyone should go to see the terra cotta soldiers.

An army must intimidate the enemy before it can proceed.  If you
Look at them in formation and the things being made then

You are the enemy.

If you wind up in their balm and nature you are the enemy.

Launch every pacific lungful of arrows and then

For your own dirty feet to come and rescue you by the heels.

Pace, beside yourself,

Like an articulate war curse or a soft
Potter's bowl.

Everyone should see the cool fireplace, and the pot,

And the pea-bellied hungry people, sculpted
in wet, slip-coated strokes.

Monday, April 22, 2013

March kite.

If you were a kid, you got a kite
Every March,

And flew it along the Conodoguinet
In someone's back yard who didn't mind.

The wind took the line, yanking it away from you
Like a willful dog on a leash, til
All that was left
was the pink strand scar on your palm,

And a ripped blue diamond flashing in the sun.

If I dropped it and you did, you would watch a blowing
Handkerchief fall into the ocean and grab it for me.

It could wind up in the Adriatic someday, or between the dead teeth of
A pirate.  But it doesn't matter.

Once you touched it you would hold your hand between the waves forever.
So many lines on your hand it would take.

Monday, April 8, 2013

"Stand By Me", in Rite Aid.

Thunder sets a brief, white precedent,
Saying aloud what

Without his wet shoulder exposed

Would qualify better

As songwriting.

Friday, April 5, 2013


It's topsy-turvy--

The oceans can be divided into two piles.

Soon, and

I've kissed windows on buses because I was
Close enough to home
That they might as well not be there

And if someone stole them

We would go swimming.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

After honeymooning in China.

Oh lift me from the grass!
I die! I faint! I fail!
Let thy love in kisses rain
On my lips and eyelids pale.
My cheek is cold and white, alas!
My heart beats loud and fast;
Oh press it close to thine again,
Where it will break at last! 

-Percy Bysshe Shelley, The Indian Serenade

The neighbors have come back.

this morning while we slept.

Their porch is decorated with prayer flags,

And the swing has been creaking in the
Dewstilling.  Heavy with rolled blood--colored
Rugs, tied in new gold twine.

One walks expectedly along a path where the ground has
been overobscured with our grass, but falls short
of the blacktop.

It has been years since I laid eyes on it, but
somewhere there is a photograph of the Yangtze I used
to bookmark a collection of poems

By Percy Shelley.  The bronze water pitted
an hour, moving to a stylus point,  collaring

One lavender forest into shoulders.

They are coarsely stretched, as if across chimneystone,

Or a bruised knee.

Monday, March 11, 2013

I will lay everything aside for you--

If you are a cushion or tough.

Look at love in the harshest spines.

You know.

Maybe my hair will fall comfortably.

The lure eyes, and go there, again.

Idly come here, ashore,

And go there, again--

Like moss, grown in a furtive arch of landing
Where sunlight can kill

Monday, March 4, 2013

The moon meets a calf.

Nothing can cup my slipping heel but me.
Sentences are cultivated in action,

And mine can be spoken by none but me.

The moon meets a calf in the owing purple
By the light.

And I hear its' caustic chorus.  Nothing--however
The message,

Could behave as I do when I am liberated.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Near Bedford.

Stop and smell the pot ash and seed hulls in the dirt--
The enamel of your ancestors

So wild and proliferate, that fields
Teem with hotly colored flowers to compete.

A sun that once roved orangely across van Gogh's eyes
Distills the corner, by a truck and your waiting friends.
Stop.  Waste everything;

Now, I want you to look at me.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

And the hill.

Look at the wolf I made with my hands,

these fingers
are slow

And hungry.

But trained. And the hill.

And each hand must wait, also,
to be distinguished from action,

As though in essence it each somehow bribed the lower end
By reaching out.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The symphony of brows.

Must the dessert be last?

I remember reading a story about a Pacific island
Of people who lived almost entirely on

Their sledges fell on gaping wood.

And girls looked like paused lips,
In hammocks.

And the sun shone even at night.

Sweat adulterated the workers,
all of whom sang,

"We must in, We must out,

Almighty, we must do both, for You,
And never stop."

Monday, February 18, 2013

The carbors.

The carbors left the meeting today,

But no one is sure when.  They just shulked off.

Everything sucks, and peals, as if left by a leaf of golden


The hog will patiently ask when of the knife;
And peace, to the jacket

Of which unsaid eyes

Have asked nothing,
will rely.

One: look at me, now-- find help for clean up. The Other: Find the carbors.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

The cherries.

You have never been invincible
But you hear them--

cherry blossoms, awake, in
Your sleep.

These are the last things
The Sun lets you see--

and it's not the way they are.

But you move, and everyone
Is moving,

Crowding the table by the valentines,
Spitting the first cherry pits
Into melting snow.

Happy, lips in duplicating bows, hands rose,
Spilling bowl upon bowl

Fetching a glint
When a dearest droplet
Is at hungry stake. You can't say goodnight,

But you want to say goodnight.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

The Chinese Anthology of Poetry.

Your plum stomach squeals at a scratching branch
And it sucks at you.

Soon, the other carbuncle, the Moon:

Will be swimming with your grassy hair,

Dyed, and late for almost everything, too.


It doesn't broaden your accommodations that you have a tail;

The vestige can always be folded, and stored.

Safari plaintiffs will wait their turns
And our houses will be redone in cozy zebraid mattresses--

You see, compassion waits while looking at a lion,
And at a leech, somedays.

No one ever wrote a letter to a faraway wall--regardless of the
Stampede prints saying what it was--

Saying it was a plea's barricade from the branding light--

As though in being snorted at and
Shared specified commonality.

Friday, February 1, 2013


With license the bridge can be passed,
And safety will ensue.

Meanwhile a cursive flock
Explains a miracle while

Helmets and straps fall--

And while no one is looking at them.

This lime tree bower my

I am not immobile,

So the world must conjure its own stale magic and stiff dirt:
It must spin without me--I won't wet it---

So that when I give credit
I can

Assure my ribs of
A Song

More profitable than a wind-purchased song.

What grace has been forced to encourage.

It takes a few hours of fisticuffs and moping
to change the disposition of a mirror--

But look!

Your gray bangs look different than when the faun
Brought you

To the Bus stop.


There is a sweet smoke that comes from being different from everyone.

And a lambent tickle.

Herders look at you longer than they would ever anyone, discussing fitful progress,

Or Satan in the presence of a lit match.


A curse upon the straws of any broom
That might sweep away the rye

From a stone.


One step on the branch and then down,
One step in the mud,

You're getting the corrugated picture of the way we eat.

I'm happy.

I see nothing but light.

If you're nearby, maybe, looking
At the same spot, and wondering

Why shadows don't register it's

Sing Hosanna.

"AND they that preceded us and the others were singing Hosanna, a blessing to fortune, in the name of the Lord." -The Gospel of St. Mark 11:9

Some days,
I disfigure You by
Saying your name, as though
Saying the name of a woman who was near

Was no different.

But I remember You--powerfully, in the game smell (in a pile of shit.)

You know the way a stream blinks, and in blinking
Very nearly prevails upon its host at the fortune of sunlight;
You are nearly nothing to me.

Monday, January 28, 2013


In the cloth there lays a little lap;
No pattern--

No one telling it how to grow
Sleeves. (But everyone is close at hand

And in the park a sunset often slips into


Saturday, January 26, 2013


The only reason to
Encourage a beaver to chew down this
One tree is that it might differ
And fall headlong on a
Marble floor.

Sunday, January 20, 2013


May this last flower be exactly as I remember it--

Exactly as it is.


The belly of an apple is
Green, and when fairness fails,

You know, the tongue is dumb to language.

Her new name is June.

If it blooms let us encounter it.  And

May I never grow so strong a stomach as to take it in grace

When her shoulder is bare and
June prevails on the calendar.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

The songs.

Experience can be conservatively divided
Into two lots:

The imaginative, and the

Uncles sing.

The world.

A cat addresses the world with neat, factual prints.

A shadow, too.

It walks to dare,

Is a fine thing that must be smudged
To distinguish. The thing is thin

Collateralizing disbelief on a path
Of mystery.


Between a girl's hand
And a marble table,

I found a cold shadow.

Where are the eyelashes? Where is the ferris wheel
In this place?

Friday, January 18, 2013

Lingua franca.

All the inches of a holiday are measured in shadows.

We eat in a way to which we are accustomed,
And we return, diaphanous,

To the language from which we momentarily paused
From speaking.

The breeze responds to me.

The breeze responds to me;

I must have been born corrupt;

Corrupt hair,
Corrupt privilege. But

I reach to fetch other contaminations.

All the whiles descend like brittle glass.

If you feel tired you should sleep.

All the whiles descend like brittle glass.

If you're gone too long the rows of medium
Will part.

Evil preserves the water abandoned by a
Shut eye.

What an apple must've been, before it was food.

When our words suddenly become functional in daily life, the horizon cuts the land from the sky.  And monsters teethe.


We share an unkempt barrack
Paid for with turnip
Ends and copper.

Winter apple.

It's morbid to lick things you don't intend to eat.

It shows you have looked at a part of
The world, listened,

And then displayed the ceremonious conviction
To wait.


What a foolish compass is laid
In the grass,

Where it might lie.

The Rape of Europa.

An oyster is wise to its own jewelry.
It opens once,

And once to one wealthy door knock.

The narrow hallway by the time clock.

I don't like to mope.

But plain walls bother me.

I am a lover of simple decorations.

And a fat shadow will suffice.


The girl's cheek grows pretty with time.
Beauty is like a young linebacker--

With no residue at his feet
He piles shoulders with wear.


Above the ground
my toes have been with the grass.

I peeled the foil from an ashy potato and ate.  Meanwhile
The monarchy of stars


Friday, January 11, 2013


A sap owes nothing
To a catcus,
Sitting beside me.

And a gulp, nothing,
To a grain of salt

Friday, January 4, 2013


I love what I've always loved because what I've always loved is affordable.
I wore wet brown shoes to get to it

And I took them off when I got there.

The story I read
Concerns an astronaut who landed on a

Shoot-colored planet--he's nearly there.

I would never have known that he had a doubt about the world,
Any more than that in those Martian chemistries similar

Geraniums grew.


If you thumb through the grassy
Things in the grow


Share them lest they be handily lost
To fingers-- or a snap of frost.