Fate & Melodrama

Ring around the rosy
and I swear that will end us.
I can’t take another blow
from a man with your mood swings
hurricane here, tornado there
it’s all wildness with you
and I, of course, am caught up in it
but don’t play me falsely,
don’t promise this and that
and drag your feet in execution
(there’s a grim foreshadow)
since I’m locked in the castle
tower, dungeon, courtyard, garden
they all have their appeal
they all have a last stand quality
that I can’t write around,
sitting down now,
head in my hands. 



grains to level
the plank out, I see
rings and things and
try to ease the strain
of eyes to see with &
ears to hear with—
all red violence when my
head’s against me
shades drawn to silk & 
velvet, clear the dust specks
in speculation of a new day
without that pounding upstairs,
nail guns, splintered cells
(hatched right open)
in aches and pains.

—god, it hurts


He watered that garden—
melting snow in the mountains and
spring rain in the meadow lands,
up came the crocus, the lilies and the roses,
round a crown of thorns
in a grove of weeping willows. 

wake up and smell the roses

now less in telling
more I say
in shouting down the
kings of heaven
fast-fallen angels
now here bidden
falsely dealing
unclaimed wisdom
do this do that
and don’t run with scissors
(here she smokes
a cigarette, unfiltered)
hello ms. pot,
hello dear kettle.

Old Bones

Echo of thunder and those sirens going off
and you and I will have to talk
since past misdeeds are buried in shallow graves -
should’ve known, should’ve guessed -
grew those flowers out of old bones 
and rotting flesh. 

Watershed Ending

Well, this is unexpected - running into you
here, among the morning glories,
the wild iris and the river weeds.  I thought
you’d gone south for the indefinite future.  
I’ve been wading in the shallows since you left,
hair undone and mud on the hem of my dress.  
But it’s this sort of luck that wills us forward
and makes us believe in fairy tales
and ghost stories.  Fate entangles us
with such iron-latched fingers, caught in a current,
spinning on to some watershed ending.  

Time Bomb

Time is tick, tick, ticking
far and away
and whether you make it
worth your while
(as nothing green nor gold can stay -

or so they say)
is only a matter of 
playing with fire and
knowing that night is
followed by day.

April Showers

Dig deep in loose, 
brown leather muck
and red, smeared over
soil like plaster and 
newly mixed war paint.

Drain dry this cup,
elixir like falls from
snow mountains, 
dripped down black branches,
washed over small pebbles.

Soak up this sun,
light glinting off a 
discarded dime of
spilled dew
in your gardens,

and bloom! 

Keep It Secret, Keep It Safe

Wearing your heart on your sleeve
only gives them an easier target.


Clouds move in 
like violet horses bounding
through snow drifts
and a woman watches
from the city cliffs, her
glass tower, one pane
(pain) away
from joining their hushed thunder.