Friday, November 30, 2012


In memory of
all I've forgotten,
I swim through
the dark like

a half-demented
hitchhiker. A century
comforts its seasons,
each of which had

hoped to be the
reason life goes on.
Impatient rhymes
wait at the end

of each line,
trembling in anticipation.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


A white parrot,
it is said, sleeps
in the color blue
and dreams the

wet dream of
a nearby lake.
This cannot be
confirmed, only

said.  That being
said, let us move
west to where
the wilderness is

and, lying down
in it, die.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


At the bottom
of the mirror's
pond a memory
sleeps in deep

liquid.  Looking
up, it sees itself
rising to the surface,
only to sink again.

It thinks it's a
ping pong ball
that's a pebble.
It senses that it

ought to remember
what it's unaware of.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Parade Grounds

Love leads each
of us to the parade
grounds by a
different route.

One guy, for
instance, has a
toothpick in his
mouth, while another

appears not to be
concerned about anything.
My chance came
when she arrived

unexpectedly in a
dress she wasn't wearing.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Your Turn

Almost anything
is something a
poem can start
out with if the

poet wants it
to.  The poet is,
after all, in charge.
You would do

well to remember
that as you
open the book
and start reading.

Okay.  Now it's
your turn.

Sunday, November 25, 2012


Now that there are
more poets than
there are readers
of poetry, let the

book burning begin.
Franz Wright is
essentially right
about being wrong.

A poet's frown becomes
a reader's easy excuse
for going insane.  A
tree standing on

tiptoe scatters
the dawn.

Saturday, November 24, 2012


Time forces a smile
on each of us as we
await the embarrassing
click of the shutter.

I was as strong then
as I am wrong now.
I am older, yes, but
still bereft of wisdom's

comforting counsel.  I
juggle words I will
never have the good
sense to use in a

sentence that says
what I mean.

Friday, November 23, 2012


Many ingenious
lovely things
are gone, replaced
by less lovely,

even more
ingenious things.
The sound of
life going

on in the next
room reminds
me of the
noise the air

makes turning
into wind.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


Trapped inside a silence
he had agreed to years
earlier, he pretended
not to notice the

lovely young women
in white.  He didn't
mention to himself
how wonderful they

were, how the slightest
movement of their
bodies suggested
a symphony no

composer had had the
courage to compose.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


A woman in gray,
whose son is in
Mexico City but
can't imagine

why, sits on her
veranda and sips
iced tea through
a straw.  A slice

of lemon floating
in the glass of
iced tea insists
on appearing

yellow to anyone
who looks at it.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

At The Window

Wisdom's widow,
dressed in darkness,
stands at the
window, looking

down on what
she can no
longer see.
Men selling

hats swat
flies, flying
off the handle
at the mere

 mention of
a dropped hat.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

As Planned

Dressed in pink,
she falls into
the well of his
eyes and enters

a dream about
starting over at
the beginning.
The dream is

filled with flowers
that have difficulty
smelling as sweet
as they need to

in order for everything
to turn out as planned.

Saturday, November 17, 2012


Hell is probably just
a less than totally
satisfactory heaven
in which some of

the fruit is a little
overripe.  Bookkeepers
can be heard bouncing
off the walls in an

imaginary recording
whose colors run
down the broad
side of a barn in

predictably unpredictable

Friday, November 16, 2012

A bird

At noon, of
course, every
light bulb goes
blind.  Lanterns

lean against a
fond memory of
night.  Shade
shivers darkly in

its skin.  A fountain,
lifting up its arms
in prayer, babbles
as if it were a

brook.  A bird
postpones its flight.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


Having been informed
by mail that I had
inherited the
kingdom of heaven,

I briefly considered
moving there with
my dog and some
of my furniture.

The rest I would
have sold had I
decided ultimately
to make the move.

As it is, I am
tentatively happy here.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


They are too young
to remember when
people died delighted
with how long they

had been required to
wait.  In those days no
one had to demand that
the slack be taken up.

It was taken up more or
less automatically (more
more than less, even though
there was still the nagging

problem of too many
dreams per square inch).

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


I can understand
how my insistence
on coming to pick
you up for our

date in a parked
car might annoy
you.  But the
parked car is the

only car I own.
It is parked where
I left it when
it ran out of

gas one night and
refused to go on.

Monday, November 12, 2012


My grandfather had
a fear of being
buried upside down
and not being able

to see the sky.
It was an irrational
fear (as most fears
are).  To placate

him, we bought him
a casket with a window,
through which we
could clearly see

him staring up at us
through his eyelids.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


Having determined'
that a perfect
name for each
thing existed

only in theory,
he gave each
thing an alias
and an alibi.

A "tree" wasn't
a tree, but could
pass for one
in a pinch.  A

"man" pointing at it
could say "that tree".

Saturday, November 10, 2012


It took an entire
crew of angels
to resurrect her
body and reattach

it to what was left
of her soul.  When
she began fading
into the background

of the memories
of those who had
known her, a
chair was brought

in for her to sit
on, permanently.

Friday, November 9, 2012

In English

It's hard to figure 
out sometimes what
hobbies the girls
are likely to have,

what degree of heed
they pay to whatever
they pay heed to.
What seems at

least partially legible
is the interest they
show in interesting
things while at the

same time thinking about
themselves in English.

Thursday, November 8, 2012


What had seemed
a mere mention
of itself in passing
became the gospel

according to John.
Tulips yawned and
cracked open like
walnuts.  Time's

cup overflowed,
not with joy, but
with even more
waiting.  Inertia

seemed content in the
chair it was sitting in.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Joseph Of Cupertino

The word "tall"
is a short word,
shorter than the
word "short",

though not quite
as short as
the word "all".
The word "levitate"

describes an action
that is unable to
occur outside the
imaginations of

Joseph of Cupertino
and his followers.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Time is a garden
in which memories
grow until they've
become large enough

to be afterthoughts
dressed in pink.
My cousin is
the gardener.

Like most gardeners,
he is unreliable.
He allows time
to bribe him

with brief pauses
that never end.

Monday, November 5, 2012

At The Present Time

I often imagine
you trying to write
the poems I write,
but not being

able to because
you are not me.
This problem you
have of not being

able to be me
is, I am told by
people who
say they know,

at the the present time.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


Gulls, too far
inland, seem
to object to
the way I write

as I cautiously
walk out of one
way of behaving
into a treeless

field.  Lord, the
summer was so
grand.  Let the
wind blow freely

through the land.
It's time.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


An orchard my
memories liked
to hide in was
torn down in

the fifties to
make room for
post-war housing.
Some of my fondest

memories ended
up in the rafters
of three-bedroom
homes.  I like to think

of them as termites
eating into the wood.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Out in the dew-coated
garden a tulip
parts its lips
in anticipation

of a promiscuous
sun.  Noon
nods its head
in agreement.

Everything that can
goes smoothly, running
every stop
sign between

here and what's
left of hereafter.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Every Yesterday

I spend most
of my days
waiting for a
letter that was

never sent.
Knowing it was
never sent
relaxes me,

allows me to
reach evening
without a hitch.
It's a letter I

address to myself
every yesterday.