Posts for June 11, 2020 (page 2)


Bird strike

A bird flew into the window
today; my heart sank
at the unmistakable thud.

On the deck I found our dog,
visibly distressed, and an unfamiliar
bird. The dog inside, her restraint

amply praised, I watched
the bird through the sliding
door. The mocha-colored body

pulsed with rapid breath —
it was alive. The head turned —
its neck wasn’t broken. A wing

stretched then retracted —
a hopeful sign. Satisfied
I could only make things worse

by interfering, I looked
for field markings: curved
black bill with yellow; creamy

throat-chest-belly; long tail
edged in white; rufous patch
on wing. By the time I found

Roger Tory Peterson, my Bird Doe
had gone, but I had a name:
yellow-billed cuckoo.



Sun paints
cloud bottoms
as deep purple
over the top,
setting in as the
sun sinks lower.
I contemplate the
tree frog on our
bedroom window
who serenades
us each night;
the whippoorwill
out calling
by the campfire;
the turtles
we found along
our path
in the woods;
the bat who
dips down
from the sky
to eat insects
in late evening;
the birds
who sing us
awake each
morning and
share part
of their day
visiting our
And I pause
the catastrophe
out in the world
just to be


Severe Winds

Severe winds came through yesterday evening
I just put the cheese ravioli on the stove
And immediately had to turn it off 
The electric came on and off
Rain slapped so hard on the windows 
I couldn’t see anything
I heard thumps and the speed of Mother Nature
In a short five minutes
Our yard
Was full of sticks
The two front trees, their old limbs,
The road near our house was blocked
Old men and their tractors showed up from every corner
Honks and phone calls
We picked up the mess today
But I haven’t put the hammock back together yet
I miss the sound of the chain hitting the metal poles at night
Reminding me of summer naps and popsicles


A Birthday Poem

Today we walk into
late Springtime sun,
grab ephemeral delights
and return to our quiet home.
Thank you for everything.
Wish you were here.


For the First Time in Months

I shook someone’s hand.
He was on a date and, I guess,
tried to impress her with high-
octane Bird scooter tricks.

I didn’t see him fall, only found
him fallen and tangled. I saw
in his eyes the mental checklist,
what still worked, what didn’t. 

At first I stayed in the car,
watched another person help
him stand up. A few other
bystanders checked him out.

I was only there to pick up pizza.
I waited in the sidewalk’s open air. 
I asked if he was okay. We bonded
over our acquaintances with concrete. 

Nobody had found him a bandaid.
So I ordered a pizza and got bandaids
for free. That’s when it happened:
he said, “Thanks, man,” held out his hand.

I ran into an old friend last week. We
punched the air between us. But there
I stood, firmly gripping this stranger,
looking into his eyes. “You’re welcome.”

I waited for them to drive away before
I pulled out my hand sanitizer. I wanted
the infection of human touch, but that
only goes so far. Plus, pizza was ready.




wondrous letters
paint my thoughts
out loudly
turning phrases
into meanings so
they make me dance
throw off my socks
stick toes in the grass
until they ache
from the cold
then retreat to
the living room chair
watch the spider
outside the window eat
and the sunlight
so in the darkness
the letters may be reborn
a phoenix
of words



Under the hostas
I sit waiting,
Snail keeps me 

To kill time

I gather flowers,
make a crown
for your beautiful head.

On this moss covered rock
I think of your feathery fur,
lux golden mane,
eyes dancing with delight
at the approach
of you.




Effie, the schoolmarm,
cared for her mom
all her life.

Effie wore
eight to ten

Effie peeled
them off
one by one

and sat down
to eat
with people.

Effie always
had dirty hands
when she ate.

Effie had
a sawed off shotgun
under  her dresses.

Effie pick
her nose
when she took food.

Effie courted
a fat man

in the middle
of roads,

stopping cars.
Local legends never
had her shoot anyone.


The Trouble with Moving (Part 4)

The last thing we’ll pack is the bed, leaned
against the U-Haul wall like a safety precaution
for our other boxes. We’ll pace and pass around
it all day, busily postponing one final addition
to the load before latching the door and leaving.
The mattress will watch us ignore it desperately.
Silly kids, still. Foolish even as adults. We delay
our comfort, our peace, our pleasure, our place.
One last night of use in this room, squarely
situated amongst all our nothing, the soft waiting
of our newness.



I’ve never been a fan of cigarettes.
But watching the smoke of some non filtered cancer stick dance in the near darkness while you lay there half asleep reminds me that sometimes the sacrifices we make are repaid.