Posts for June 16, 2018 (page 2)


graduation party

someone’s suggests a boat ride,
a paddle through the pond,
and somehow i find myself,
stuck in the stern,
pushing my feet over and over again,
tugging along with a girl
and two boys i hardly know.

we reach the center,
cool and calm,
too deep to swim,
and i suggest a switch.
and then the tired trudge
of swapping seats, 
boat sinking further
into the give and take
of our man made waves.

i slouch at the back,
sandal clad feet dipping below the surface,
face towards the sun,
thinking about how i wouldn’t much mind
to slip off this boat
into this cool blue pond
and float on the surface,
until my mother comes calling
or the sun goes down,
whichever happens to come first.


(Sometimes) God is Hard (of Hearing)

(Sometimes) God is Hard (of Hearing)


Thick oily dark hair
(protecting the non 
innocent by changing 
identifying characteristics)
(or perhaps protecting myself)
doesn’t give (any) one the right
to teach our young to lie
(& not even doing a great
job of lying), how to choose
extracurricular activities
(we won’t even go into this),
 or acceptable social be-
(to be or not to be) hav(e)-
(to have or not to have) ior 
((adjective (i.e. a ”rotten” egg, 
a “cloudy” mind) this and compare 
to what might be tied more closely
to an authentic life)).  We must show
(not just tell) our young how to sniff thorny 
air (& not thorny air), put their hands (& 
whole bodies) in rich soil (discern the difference
between soil and plastic bottle litter—which
turns up all around the world), and 
pull their big under- (unseen as well as seen)
wear (used & worn & 
purposeful) up. 

Melva Sue Priddy


Funny Thing Happened Just Before Vacation

Trusted driver’s side rear window
finally relinquished reliability right before
we planned to leave the car
in my brother’s driveway seven whole days.

The gap left when it wouldn’t roll up
was only the width of your smart phone,
but that’s enough room for the nefarious stranger
or furious storm with all of its elements.

I brainstormed solutions while driving there, hoping
maybe my brother had a vacant garage,
all while praying for the serenity of a week
accepting things as they are.

That is until I mentioned it to my brother
who didn’t even hesitate to have a look
underneath the devil empowered sun,
putting his head to the problem.

Do you mind if I take off the door panel?
Tap that box. Somehow that sometimes works.
There’s a cable back there that may be twisted or broken.
This stuff will readhere like reusable glue.

Meanwhile I observed duct tape on his car,
same make, similar model, same window, similar problem.
He said that it happened a few days earlier
then added as he put my car back together,

If I hadn’t had that problem,
I wouldn’t have known how to fix yours.

I thought about our poetry, about why we write,
the diversity of style and words we choose
but every piece can touch at least one soul
helping them through whatever trials we are already surpassing.



I got drunk and searched for  
the kid I kicked
on the playground 
in third grade.
I told my teacher 
I didn’t do it.
It still keeps me up at night.
I take a walk on the beach 
to calm my mind 
and remember breaking
my friends sand dollar once.
Do other people still think
about things like this?



warm water, the black invisible
sucks in a breath’s question,
death hug of the
too loving

labored flight of a
black and yellow
above him.

drunken whirlybird
bumping blind surfaces
seeming also blind
matte black head,
no eyes,
in waking darkness

double dead

olfactory intuition
in rudderless flight,
constructed from impossibles

he slept on a firm
forgiven earth
and dreamt this.


Sadness of Fireflies

With wings that look like smooth wood
or smoky topaz rimmed
with caramel
and bioluminescence beaming
in bellies
like midnight suns
they livened up my childhood
summers along with the freedom
of long days and nights lively
with cricket psalm.
In evening they flashed
slowly and slid softly upwards
and downwards
and lit up my sight—
a thousand golden lamps
in the silent dark.  

Now they are far fewer
a lone one here and there
in the spaces between
street light and flood light   
the spaces in my mind
between the tumbling
umber of dreams
and the roar
of age.


Little Bluff Bluff Names Imaginary Friends*

Born Again Virgin
Big Blue Blood Horse
Soaring Turkey Vulture
Little Bluff Bluff

Porcupine Bear
Soars with Hawks
Running Dog Walks
Little Bluff Bluff

Joe Medicine Crow
Old Yellow Wolf
Darren Coyote
Little Bluff Bluff

She Who Smiles
Silver Sunflower
Swimming Bear
Little Bluff Bluff

Son of Sun Eagle
He Will Not Wait
Has No Shame
Aspens Quake
Little Bluff Bluff

*none of these names are intended
to represent actual people
who may have the same name


Would kitty be a Trump supporter?

my huntress awards me
with dead moles and mice
trophies not food
her stalking never witnessed

until blackbird wings shimmer
between kitty’s teeth

until she drops the bird
belly-up into the grass
its chest heaving
rapid terror
trying to play dead

until kitty’s motionless wait
for the wildly flapping escape
she can chase down

my soft sweet kitty
captures but doesn’t kill
again and again
not ready to end
the game

nonchalant cruelty is
her other nature
hauntingly human
like severing
traumatized children
from their parents
at the border
just for the optics
of power
the heady scent
of fear


This Dad Needs a Beer

I forgot how to breathe in the summer of two-thousand ten 


Thumbing through every repressed memory trying to recall his scent 


I have the same eyes as you and maybe the same hands 


And when Santa came, I would leave out Pepsi and Swedish Fish because the merry man was lactose intolerant, as am I 


but he told me at four that it was all lore, it was a sin. 


And he thanks the good lord for all that has been


and was he smiling down on you when you broke in? 


While you held your first-born under the chin? 

His feet did not touch the ground. 


And was God securing your heavenly home while you broke your arm from the force of the blows 

to all your children? 


I’m trying to remember your smell, but I am only re-living hell. 

Note: My father was not an alcoholic, his wrath stemmed from some deep rooted issues and the love of God. On Father’s Day of 2017 I purchased myself an apron that says “This Dad Needs a Beer.” because it feels nice to deal with trauma through poor humor, I still wear it when I cook. 




all children
all brown
all alone

too many
too blind
too silent

who will ever
forgive such 
failure to love