8.11.2018

Might As Well Jump


Almost arrogantly tall, striding light
but unaware
that epic height offers no protection,
fly without care
as those with power to envelop you
come from nowhere--
If martyrdom awaits, better to soar,
rage your warning to tomorrow’s tall child--


Forms in the Imaginary Garden: CAVATINA

8.04.2018

Observation 8-2018



I saw a baseball cap
sporting the slogan
Make Orwell Fiction Again
and it brought a slight chuckle
but not a real laugh
because of course I recognized
terrible truth

The most dystopian feature
of new reality
is the constant background drone
of military planes
always present
in our pristine Valley sky
each always slowly banking
as though it forgot something
and had to turn around
to head back home
suspended
like it wants to get a real good
look at me

They’re circling the farm fields
even peeking through on days
heavy with thunder clouds
and they’re circling the city
of Springfield
bending in and out of view
from the tall windows
of my sixth-floor cubicle
many times each work day
banking above train tracks
and the YMCA
often in pairs

I swear one appears
from behind Mount Tom
every time I drive south
along the Connecticut River
and pass the Oxbow
always startling
seeming to brake and suspend
so still
observing until I turn right
and out of sight

You might say well
there’s an air reserve base nearby
and we’ve long had these planes
populating our skies
but I know
what it was like before
and how it is now
a marked difference
that crept up on us
like so many other losses
we didn’t see coming at first

I hate those fucking planes
and I trust my own eyes and ears
thank you very much
they are the last defense
of we fools
in what has never been
fiction

7.26.2018

Mostly Uncomfortable


I want
to wear a t-shirt
with your face on the front
and stride
all bold and pushy
hollering
toward the light

It would be like me
to find my footing
and set out
seeking the Big Revelation
only to learn it’s contained
in specks of dust
floating by my window

7.15.2018

At the Convention


Imagi
    -nation
casts spell side

Saddle front
           ways kitty
corner so

In every
  direction
   wondrousness


Tricubes in the Imaginary Garden!

7.03.2018

Independence Day 2018


Is it just my eyes
or is everything hazy now
like we are living
on the edge of a brush fire
or conversely
sending dispatches
from inside a dirty dish sponge

In this kind of haze
you must imagine the worst
in any human interaction
wanton awfulness
of which now we are capable
the kind
that refuses to be unthunk

This haze
weighs everything down
like America’s
heavy thundershirt
choking sopping tamping numbing
so we cannot even make out
the fireworks

7.01.2018

Scribbled Observation #854


With my notebook
across a coffeeshop
from a kid
writing in his notebook
noticing him
noticing my daughter
as she walks by
not noticing him
looking back down
writing in his notebook
about her
as I write in mine
about him

6.25.2018

Share

There’s lettuce in my coffee
as I navigate a volume
of produce from this week’s share
seven pounds to be exact

In a break from chopping kale
I learn that Donald Hall has died

Guess it’s not so surprising
I just then had been thinking
about what aging feels like
in the extremities to be exact

So let me raise this cucumber
to farms and poets and living

6.19.2018

Tuesday in June

After the storm
a red-tailed hawk
swept
toward the comfort
of far-away
pillowy rainclouds
and I wished
I could tag on
for points beyond
this place

6.12.2018

1976 El Camino


The odometer
when I left for work
on your birthday
read 44444
which gave me pause
as after all
we are a family of four
and we woke on your day
in our four-poster


Maybe this number
represents a window
into our world
or yours
or the pedestal I put you on
or the box you keep me in
or the highest-flying
diamond kite
no keys


I passed an El Camino
on the highway
and flashed on our getaway
flying in style
enameled tinge of guilt
because as you know
it’s a two-seater
there was room only for you
and me

6.10.2018

Pink

I
am true
     -est sky-ish
when I’m with you
Wish I could think to pink
     away
     your blue


Tetractys in the Imaginary Garden!

6.09.2018

Our Patch

Once
there were
flowers here,
pink peonies.
Now we scratch for sustenance in the dirt. 

Writing TETRACTYS poems in the Imaginary Garden!

6.03.2018

Fraternizing

The enemy
has gained substantial ground
establishing headquarters
under my chin
a brigade
staking claim on my belly
directing nasty companies
up my thighs
as resistance
seems increasingly futile
and what is there to do
anyway
but raise a white flag
or attempt to shamelessly consort

5.25.2018

108


Today is the birthday
of my grandmother,
Anne Gilmore Stewart.
Born in 1910, she would have been
108 years old today!


To me, fair friend, you can never be old,

For as you were when first your eye I ey'd,
Such seems your beauty still.

(from Shakespeare, sonnet 104)

5.21.2018

Along the Mohawk Trail


I wish I could show you
what I saw today--
a modest and orderly orchard,
trees planted like gravestones
on a lazy slope
behind a roadside apple stand,
perfect spring blossoms
glistening in the stately slant
of dinnertime sun
as if to say here’s how to stand
when it’s your turn to go
to seed


edited by Jane Yolen and published by Straw Dog Writers Guild.

5.18.2018

Eating Crow


A protest of crows
met at the Sunoco
sending contingents
across Armory Street
in Springfield
American crows
in a tumult
cawing news
of fumbled rebellion
more ignominy than murder
more sorrow than resistance


edited by Jane Yolen and published by Straw Dog Writers Guild.

5.17.2018

Daybreak Over Chicopee


Hope wears an itchy sweater
with holes in the elbows,
rinses returnable bottles,
finds comfort in the rhythm
of the clothes dryer.
Hope belts out its plea,
hitting the high notes
rounding the Chicopee bend
on 91 South.
Hope turns on a dime
or the ten bucks it thought
was stashed in its wallet.
Hope sighs and slouches,
gives trigger warnings,
sits out arguments.
Hope pretends.