Saturday, December 3, 2016

Last Act

Last Act

A pared face, a false peel, a sliver
above silver seamed stars;
who will call the waters
now that we've broken the moon?

In the windowed night,
 love's widow
walks her hushed graveyard,
where the white skirts of memory
 rustle around the turn.

Who can say
what time it is; only that time
never stops.

 ~November 2016

posted for real toads

Note: I cheated here and used the first 55 words of a longer poem, hoping it stands alright alone--anyway, only for those interested, here is the rest of the piece:

 Last Act


Who can say
what time it is; only that time
never stops.
the midnight door--perhaps a dead king 
disinters to go dancing,
or the palest child, cold,
is offering in the dark
a chance to finally pay your debt;

hear a script with no speaker,
a performance careless of audience,
a whole cosmos
that gestures and moves
as the void declaims before it,
tapping its teeth in the final soliloquy.

All we are is cut from this paper,
cellophane over the footlights.

Who is that 
singing by starlight
now that the players have gone?

~November 2016

Images: Night, 1905, by Mikalojus Ciurlionis Public domain 
A Graveyard in the Tyrol, 1914, by John Singer Sargent  Public domain 
Both images slightly manipulated.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

White Bird In Snow

White Bird In Snow

This unsleeping night
remembers winter for me
as it remembers the January hour
I was born, seeing past the still
green curl of April's exhausted leaf
the chill glassful of north wind,
so delicately sipped now
before the drowning.

It knows my name, it calls me
winter girl, drifted witch, 
snow-woman globed from rolled
frozen fog, compressed cloud wrack,
sentinel-eyed and carrot-beaked,
ice fingers melted then
rigid again around
a hollow pen;

bent wrist, bent back, ages
old, so old not even an ash-furred coal
glows from the parsed fire in my pale
flattened face.
The sleepless night
rustles with husks and remains;
a coyote stutters his hunger 
to the planked stars

and here where all things pass,
long sleep comes down the grass
where I wait
invisible and surprised
as a white bird
in October snow.

~October/November 2016

for Brendan at real toads 
from a still, white place


Images: House in Snow, 1890-94, by John Henry Twatcham
White Birds in Snow, by Ohara Koson
Public domain.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Thursday, November 10, 2016



When the way is smooth
we trip on nothing
because we're made
 to kick things down.

When the belly's full
the brain cramps,
sells thought
for adrenaline.

Small griefs swell like seeds;
so the vein sprouts the needle,
the mountain's slick slope 
shakes its entropy, an avalanche

rumbling us down while
the summit recedes.

We forget

when living's too easy,
we make times get hard.

~February 2014.  revised November 2016

an old one revised, for Fireblossom Friday

Top: Aerial View of Capitol Hill, Public Domain  via wikimedia commons
Footer: Ruins of central Amarna, Egypt, the little temple of the Aton(Amarna Bâtiment du centre ville, zone du petit temple d'Aton)by Kurohito
Shared under a Creative Commons License  via wikimedai commons

Tuesday, November 8, 2016



The warrior walks
across the sky tonight
spinning the tale of resilience
twisting the tale of valor
wearing the worked hide of stars,
supple in battle yet
turning no blade;
marked for an early death
or a bloody age--
yet who would want to pass
through this night of sorrow and wrong
without a fight?

~Election Day, 2016

Image; reproduction of the Golden Horn of Gallehus, via wikimedia commons