Saturday, December 28, 2013

wood harbinger

wood harbinger heralds the snows
up winding the path covered white
a shelter in the bark
burnt folds are open to us
we watch the snow without
from within the tree
holding on to us
talking with me
i can tickle the giant sequoia
and it laughs a thousand year old laugh
out of deer, grey squirrels, chipmunks and birds
passing shadows
making faces
marking time
on top of the mountain
slight little me
how tall and how long
can you stand in rain
and snow
in winds that blow
in sun and heat
all seasons complete
an auburn tree watches and holds on to me
and reminds me not to rush
no worry so great
no love so strong
no time to stop
letting the world go on about its way.

Friday, December 27, 2013

the biggest raindrops

the moribund  go en masse
stampeding unleashed, wild running free.
an invasion force of filler fellows,
lean, manic decoration. 

but then the real gordos are engaged
beyond the last of the legionnaires,
after the noisy wind has scampered.
during the wee hours usually

when all is quiet.  that's their time.
they are fewer.  the summation.
it seems as regular course that the very
fattest raindrops jump when i'm sleeping.

they slip, or are pushed, off the cloud,
do something like sizzle on the way down;
a faint wet hiss or whistle, a quiet, steady
sound; the only one they make.

soar in solo,  a fly ball into center.
splat what they hit.  there are no misses.
outside my window they zap a plastic tarp
covering the neighbor's motorcycle.

after listening an hour i am conscious enough
to realize what's going on, and predawn
i write lines preserving their integrity 
in recognition of their sonic contribution

Wednesday, December 25, 2013


victory over sail
sweeping far to sea
onward to uncharted shores
that's where i long to be

five centuries before my birth
ancestors sat at evening meal
even to this very day
i know just what they feel

deep inside of everyone
there flicks a tiny spark
passed through daughters and father's sons
now shadows in the dark

they live anew, though i know not where
or how much of them is able
to break into my consciousness
and be seated at my table

while they have long since fallen
bone and teeth far  gone
some thing moves from sun to sun
something left undone

victory over the sail
victory over the sea
the final quest lies beyond the sun
that's where i long to be

Thursday, December 19, 2013

can i find the way?

the hum is the city

mouths closed silent
opening the day in force
moving in city numbers
calm, fresh, in a rush

good morning, meet those eyes
here i stop to make note
glance the ticking clock
now is our time

the crowd has a timbre, mood, a tone
could be the earth itself,  myself
full up this minding, hear that?
up close, it is not a hum

can i find the way?
undulating through combers
of people's notions;
some minikin thoughts are mine

though sustain on unattached observation.
as moment by moment
days rolling upon another
changing dream clusters

in motion. emotion. commotion.
my ship in harbor, no anchor holds me
waves of people walking, not talking,
not talking, although know well,

in their hearts everyone wants
to detail aloud their current concern,
ailment, injury, or when nothing else
is available, news of a friend or relative
yes, pain sells like rain to the weatherman
if night dreams lingered
there'd be more to write about
but days would be confusing, jumbled.

again i take pause to note the ticking clock;
now is my time.  now is our time.
long ago my ship left the dock
can i find the way

moving maze forward
through waves of people thought
fumes haze the brain
coat a glaze,  damper the blaze
now call bill to meet for coffee.
after hello he said today is paper day, a reminder
knows well the trash collection schedule.
he'll tell more when we meet at Angelo's

there, he talks, i drink the coffee.
though i try to subsist on keeping track
make note again, eye toward the ticking clock
now is our time

my fortune cookie said

my fortune cookie said
well, it didn’t say
it read,
that is to say, i read.

should i start over?
that’s not what i in the cookie read,
but it seems a good idea,
starting over.

if we have a choice,
if we’re not rich enough, healthy enough,
or have loved enough,
food to eat, place to sleep.

let’s work on it.
make our own cookie fortune.
print it by hand,
send it to ourselves

with insufficient postage,
then act surprised when
the postman returns it to our door,
i mean, to my door.

it’s not our door
cause we don’t live together.
well, we may,
but not you and i together.

you may live with someone,
that is possible,
but, if you’re not M.
you and i don’t live together.

but then, i am me,
you are busy being you.
now give me
my fortune cookie.

you have to make life
as best you can.
make it up.
make it out.

and i know you will
because we all
are doing the best
we can.

i don't have
to read that
bit of truth
in a fortune cookie. 

reprise  - aug- 2010

Wednesday, December 18, 2013


knee-deep in wild weed let's walk
an afternoon together
you tell your tales, i'll tell mine
kicking a stick

tossing dust to the wind
a sampling of this
to determine that
a perhaps a small fire and coffee

under the sweet warm leaves canopy
as sun shoots rays
pressing against our cheeks
and in our eyes

brother to brother
sons and daughters
fathers and mothers
friends all together

these things
and more
will always be
as i say, as they are

i have an island

i have an island in my room
i keep it in my bed
it's there i sun and walk on sand
and swim inside my head

Friday, December 06, 2013

tight squeeze

tight squeeze this
early evening, where ahead
a small car parked parallel 
half on the sidewalk

a full grown german shepard
reclines there.
shop workers, a man and a woman,
sit chatting, backs to shop window.

walking, i approach where lies the dog
to whom, firm, clear,
non threatening, i say, "allora."
which translates:  "well, what know?"

the large animal lumbers to his feet,
slowly circles, moves out of my way
i glance toward the woman sitting there
who shrugs, with an expression that says
"well, sorry, you know dogs."

in turn i reply with my face that tells her,
"i understand, that is life, the way of the dog,
it's not always a dog's world"
or something to that effect.

at the same time
to the dog i did say
as i passed,

Saturday, November 02, 2013

chance note

a variety of consciousnesses
preamble the talk, that other eve,
now past, forgotten, thank goodness.
change of  idea sub stratum  .  .  .

to Angelo i say, dirty water,
what they call caffe Americano,
first savored, then vetoed.
cappuccino me forever.

tension hangs air
as blown perm heavy in leopard pants
parading by, pulls small dog on chain.
forward - another day in paradise.

on wing time goes by. 
stumbling,  i make my way
taking choices
to live,  to learn - a veritable gamble.

then a bright flash idea occurs to me
which is immediately
lost amid random papers 
on the kitchen table of my mind

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

early morning rain

early morning rain fell lightly.
there were large drops in groups
then the soft sound like glass chimes
on and on again
in the moderate day-beginning chill of mid October
when it is cool, but not so much so
i left one window open
to my carnival

Friday, October 11, 2013

root spring

from roots deep we spring
as child with family and pets,
friends, cousins, uncles and aunts.
in school and holidays, we grow

a spinning maze
overlapped and interlaced
in motion.  when in a flash
we're old and recall gone days

then in a breath
we are back
to where are
our roots

Thursday, October 10, 2013

three errors

impatient to go
couldn't find my keys
at last found them in my bag
they belong in my right pants pocket.

going down the stairs
i remembered my phone, go back,
unlocked the door, went in, searched
until i found it where it shouldn't be.

while inside i remembered
to check the gas.   i had left it open.
valves were off, ok; but
i close the tank for safety, always.

keys, phone, gas.  ID in my pocket
all was in order.
on the street i stopped,
made note of my errors.

noting errors is not important
remembering to think is.
if i have to make note to
remember to think i will.

when the first baseman
makes three errors
he gets to think about it
while sitting on the bench.

no one has taken me out
i am still in this game
will do the best i can. i believe Yogi
"it's not over 'til it's over."

Saturday, October 05, 2013

baby bunny

morning's first light is golden, it seems.
worth seeing.
from the porch today i observe
she picks zucchini flowers large as panda bears.
pulls the stamen;  puts the lovers in a basket.

informs me the little bunny,
the one she talks to in a sweet baby voice,
has munched the stem and destroyed
the top off a pepper plant;
thus gaining disfavor.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

stuff in our heads

mouths closed, silent;
opening the day calm, in order.
the many, the workers,
cool, fresh and clean.

if we could assemble
our confusing and jumbled
Rorschach pieces of dream
there'd be more we'd know.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Rome city life

Rome city life is to wait
opens at nine, and then some
no need to worry, enjoy the day
then Abdul showed

from afar he calls my name
more than a year since i'd seen him
my friend from Senegal
i left and brought him a coffee

our road is the city
there is no shame
honor is in friendship
we do what we can

four minutes on the dryer
walking closer it was fifteen
like life, you never know for sure
how much time is really on the dryer.

Friday, September 06, 2013

silence please

the silence of the morning
is like no other
except yesterday
and hopefully tomorrow.

i think even in sleep
you appreciate it;
benefit even, no doubt.
although i had to mention it

so nothing is quite
as simple as it seems;
with the possible exception
of that jerk that lives across the street.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

cherries today

sunny early,  already warm
take your time.
driving out in the country
you know the way from past years

they give you a basket to fill
ladders are out there
old farm dog barkless, has seen it all before
select your first tree

point out good bunches
start picking your own
going up, reaching
farther, higher

eat plenty-many, that won't make it to pie
fluffy cat may follow a while
to see if you're good for a few strokes
and maybe some roll-over belly pats

no bugs, no buzzin' bees
pack out what you pay for
they weigh it up at the end
a summer day in the country

Sunday, July 14, 2013

conjectural frogs

they're out there, hidden
unbeknown to the eye
under a gibbous moon and dawn stars
by thick antecedent weeds

a circus mire abounds
muted amid stitched nests of green
sans time or sound
invisible frogs

Sunday, June 30, 2013

sunday about

we stopped in a town
after another called red haw
was still thinkin' about it 
'til m. said the k fell off

ordered a breaded chicken sandwich
cost ten cents less than unbreaded
an' they said it was bigger
hoped it was local, not out o' state

had water to drink
with ice cubes in the glass
stirred it with my fork
ordered at 2:10 p.m., ten minutes after closing

m. pointed to a sign on the wall
"Free Idiot Test, Limited Time Only
Act Now, $5", reached for my pocket
m. put out her hand to stop me

later driving, slowed on route 250
for a wild goose crossing the road
walking, and taking his time
in fine easy stride

not alarmed at all
when we whizzed by
that black sleek road warrior with the
white neck band like a cleric

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

the commander and lulu

the commander is flaps down
on approach to the final tarmac
wrapping up his mission

pa, and lulu with him,
are on the way out or maybe in
depending how you read it

a few years ago tom drove lulu, meri and i
back from tony’s restaurant
outside payson, an arizona hill town

as he sped hard to pass a truck he floored it  
and we were all thrown back in our seats.
above the gas sucking engine roar i commented,
“so you miss flying those pby’s, tom?”

and we all laughed
and to tears will laugh again
saluting the commander
and his real lulu

(wriiten for
the spreading of the ashes
from the mogollon rim)

Friday, April 05, 2013

standing mid market

standing mid market
see and hear the poetry of life
this early april now
another rainy morning

through drips and pauses
crowds that never cease
dragging puddles
tireless as vegetables

photos will remember 
where they have been
remind them of when when was
and they were really here

the poet among
speaks for them.  at night 
a gypsy one moment flash recalls
and will not say of one seen again

thus we travel boundless
colors, shape and sound
the world around
in and by affect

Friday, February 22, 2013


mercoledì, agosto 26, 2009

to enlighten mankind

martedì, agosto 25, 2009

middle of the night

lunedì, agosto 24, 2009

a dark figure

from the front step i saw
in the stillness of heavy dusk
a lone dark figure
amble my way down the street

perhaps it’s that bushy headed cute girl
with the cheery hello, who lives next door
that always sings walking her kitty
and has a happy word for everyone

i waited a moment
as the figure drew near i saw it was Rollo
the waddling ancient groundskeeper
from the local cemetery, tugging his little dog

and who rides the loudest riding mower in creation
always yells in your face, is irritating and grumpy,
with a chill in my spine i slipped into silent shadows,
maybe next time i'll say hi

Saturday, February 02, 2013


now I know why
old guys wear suspenders

cause there comes a time in life
when a man has no ass,

and that’s about the time
you finally realize
that you see more old drunks
than you do
old doctors.

Wednesday, January 09, 2013

between time

afternoon turning evening
twilight quiet January damp
meet  Mauro in the covered pass
beyond the Buddhist church

under twin aged stone arches
to him my email with  parting wishes
as he heads to the south pacific
on a  quest to find his way

then campo dei fiori nearly empty
this cobblestone field of flowers
when a  friend of twenty years stops. 
we exchange new year greetings

good words,  good minutes between us
always satisfying is our exchange
never knew each other’s names
but know a friend when we see one

then i see nico, he barely sees me
his  hearing also is wavering
one hundred years and counting, on this
street he was born and lives alone

somehow an empty city
bringing friends together briefly
passing in the light fading cool
of yet another winter late afternoon