Sunday, January 02, 2011


The month begins with the turn of a page,
Time made bearable in two-inch squares,
Accounting for the moon's every phase.
Observances of dead men's deeds,
Holy days give rise to faith in
The predictability of change;
The dailiness of life.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Because the Days are Shorter

Beneath October's wild blue yonder,
bright with traffic light leaves,
the backyard maple begins her slow strip-tease
that confirms what I already knew:
Summer's bags are packed --
she's taking the sol train south.
So, I'll put aside my yearning
for ice cream, picnics, boat rides on the lake...

...and pick up the rake.

Friday, June 18, 2010

White Trash Haiku

Risky Behavior

Released today from
rehab, the neighbor girl wears
flip-flops to cut grass.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Screen Will Not Prevent Child From Falling Out Window

Lawmakers cannot leglislate against
stupidity, nor lack of common sense;
Nor is there balm nor pill to cure us of
the horrid pain of falling out of love.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Confessions of a Non-Confessional Poet

Early on in my late teens I discovered:
a) love
b) God
c) my best friend wasn't
d) all of the above.
With that knowledge I turned to:
a) god
b) sex
c) my new best friend (Jack Daniels was his name)
d) poetry.

Friday, June 04, 2010


How many cups of coffee does it take,
Scalding, black as night without a moon –
To write a poem before you are awake?

A rhyme distills, and then evaporates --
"The world is too much with us, late and soon" –
How many cups of coffee does it take?

I pour a second cup and concentrate,
No half-and-half this morn, no need for spoon,
But need to write this poem before you wake.

Skimmed thoughts inside my head, try to think straight…
While NPR goes in and out of tune:
How many cups of coffee does it take?

Another eight ounce mug of inspira-
tion later, and my muse is still immune…
How many cups of coffee does it take
To write a poem before you are awake?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

haikus to my old house

pet cemetery -
the bones of old cats sleeping,
chasing childhood dreams.
mouldy sheetrock blooms
where a tree fell through the roof,
letting in the rain.
my grandfather's love
was to distant to be felt;
but I have his name.

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Cathy dear, a very happy birthday!
Love, Barbara
So goes the dedication in the book
of Billy Collins' poems I just picked up
for three bucks at the book exchange in town.
Cathy dear, how did it come to pass that
you would toss away this gift? Did you and
Barbara have a falling out? I can't
imagine that you didn't like the verse
that Mr. Collins crafts: his style and wit
transcend the bounds of age and taste and time.
Who else, I ask, can wax poetical
about the funny, sad and musical;
the every day, Art Blakey, and the things
that you or I would never think to write
a poem about? Cathy dear, your loss is
my reward, a prize, your birthday gift
to me!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

the well-wrought verse: a poetics

Ut pictura poesis:
The definition, Horace's;
Splash of words across a page
in shades of passion, awe, or rage.

Other times a poem may be
the delicate web of spider's silk
that captures any thought
unlucky to get trapped
in the muse's orb

Reflected in tranquility

A well-wrought verse is
Like a haiku etched in air,
Poet's soul in flight.

A poem should not mean
but be

ink flowing like life's blood
a record of the here that did not
exist a moment ago
roadmap to the mystery
of what it is to love
of what it is to grieve
of what it is to LIVE

resolved, at last,
the question unasked

Poems should be written rarely and reluctantly,
should make lovers weep,
and critics swoon.

But, most of all,
a poem
the thing you write,
because you want to,
because you must.

Friday, March 19, 2010


anesthesia is best left to experts;
but numbing oneself to
the desired degree
of indifference
requires no prior experience --
only a large enough glass.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

hyper poem

technology has redefined
"new skins for the color blind"
but old skins for the fully sighted
are still mainly blacked and whited

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

a day in the life

sitting in an English garden,
nibbling cellophane flowers
of yellow and green,
she turned to me and said
"I am the walrus,"
(but everyone knew her as nancy)