Posts for June 1, 2022


Derecho to Jericho

I found a piece of you
Reaching through time
The shape of the heart

The lilt of joy,
the considered life
in the fingers,
in the loops

I find a piece of you in the closet
I’ve neglected to organize
and for a moment it’s a jolt
as looking into your eyes

After 2 years,
looking back into your hopes and joys
when buying the laptop
knowing you would fill it with photographs

I haven’t looked into your laptop yet,
I’ve not had it in me
I hope that when I do,
that I can find the password
and I can use the laptop cord 
you wrote your name on

I, as a painter, You, as a pianist
The use of fingers to make vibrations palpable,
to make marks upon another’s soul

A CIA agent would know 
your state of mind
at the time of writing,
and I can feel it too,
a shock of your ISness,
your Beingness,
your brain.

Though I know your infinite self is still around,
your physical thoughts are palpable through my eyes
to my heart 
through your handwriting.


The Haunted House

There’s a house in the field just outside the town.
People thought it was haunted and they told stories about the strange things that lie in its depths.
Nobody knows what’s really there, so they talk about the monsters and the ghosts,
But the people who really go there, they see it.
Not the house.
The decay, the emptiness, the holes in the walls that are framed by darkness,
Slowly creeping, spreading.
They feel it in the very air and they run from it.
This place, touched long ago by a dark power.
Slowly fading, wasting, haunted by the fears of those who run.
No, not haunted, cursed.
For these people all feared it.
They did not know.
The only thing that could stop it was someone who was brave enough,
Someone who would not run .
Someone who would not leave at all, but move closer, reach foward and with a hand,
Or maybe just a single finger, touch it
And it knows, one day, this will happen.
That is destined,
But now it sits forgotten, neglected,
Fading on this hill.
And it is healed, that day, because someone watches it, and they see:
This is the true curse.


After Graduation

Teachers carouse at a local bar

to celebrate the end of another
weird year. One of them had 
to arrive first to claim the table. 
One will stay until the end and
need to Uber home. One hasn’t
told the rest she’s leaving. One
slips away without saying bye.


Dum Dum Boy

I am a sucker
Getting played by two middling hustlers
I was dealing generously
A little magnanimously
Too recklessly, obviously
And let them swindle me, separately
Hucksters entirely


Mama Dear

Hi Mama, oh how I wish you were here.
I look at your photo and for this moment you are right here with me.
No words do we exchange.
I stare at you and you stare back at me, alive in my mind and in my heart.
You’re always with me in spirit and in love.
I know you are looking down on me from Heaven missing me.
I clutch your photo close to my heart missing you.
Every day since August 26, 2012.
I wish you were here.
I love you, mama dear.


I Love You

I made it just for you, he says. 

He heated it on the stovetop, 
added the good, strong pepper-
Until the soup had character. 

Black pepper is good for sickness, he says. 

He stirred in purple basil
the last little leaves from last year’s garden-
zest from the rind of the sun.

So you can grow stronger too, he says. 

when he presses the mug into my shaky hands
nestles a kiss against my sweaty forehead,
he doesn’t have to say anything at all.

And he does so anyways. 



The onion resists my painstaking pressure,
The heavy steel blade makes only a crease in the papery skin.

It tries to roll away and my fingers fly up in surrender.

Careful, careful, I think to myself.

“You’re more likely to cut yourself with a dull knife than a sharp one.” I’ve heard it a hundred times.

I poke through with the tip and let the blade slip into the path of the puncture.
Once it gets a foothold I’m home free. 

“A good sharpening is all it needs.”
And the tears begin to flow.


Play in the Dirt

The air in the house was suficating.
Outside she could grab grass,
pull weeds,
meet crawly creatures loose in the soil,
play in the dirt!
She hand drops seed specs
covering each gently with something like desire.
Inside the fence lines
the gardener garners the Mockingbird calls
turns her dripping face into the slight breeze,


Blue Collar

There’s one thing for certian
those small town
always die the same. 

Some tragic natural disaster
or another school lockdown
strikes in the middle of a Thursday 
when dinner was left cooking on the stove.

Shakes the whole damn world up
For the folks around those parts,
but rest assured it will be
business as usual
come Monday morning. 



Handbags laid away on the shelf
even a few overflowing paper gift bags
each a time capsule, or a landmine.
For today’s foray, 
I chose the colorful  cat-patterned bag:
hospital bracelet
various cards:
      roller rink  
      aquarium passes  
      discount cards
matchbox car
Burger King toy
several pens
Hike Ohio brochure
Thumb Drive
a friend’s address (who has since moved again and I still haven’t written)
an almost blank journal:    
   scribbled cartoons of myself bald    
    list of tasks, including radiation and infusion dates

I set it back , contents intact, maybe for another 7 years.