Sunday, October 30, 2022



Sometimes in a picture

You’re not looking at the camera

You’re actually peering through the 

Lens, signaling to a future self idly 

Flipping through a stack of old photos

Or scrolling through a digital album

Who will see himself frozen in a moment

Brandishing a practiced look, a certain smile

(One you both recognize so well)

Letting him know this was the one.

That everything was once okay 

Close to perfect even

That trip, that celebratory dinner, that holiday

This one time,  

(In case you’ve forgotten)

We were happy


Tuesday, October 25, 2022



An ink spilled indigo evening

Eliciting ice pricked thoughts 

Ominously blotched,vague evil

A witch’s carbonaceous sunset, black catted 

Distant but wraps its claws around

Your neck in an instant 

I’m not afraid though

I’m the prey wandering

Naked in the woods

Hoping you’ll choose me

For your nightly sacrifice

Even that would be a blessing

Knowing some seer believes

I have an ultimate purpose

My shivering flesh a pale feast

And ritualistically, at least,

Not worthless 

Tinder to a great blazing pyre

My soul bounding between

Skeletal trees with a herd

Of dull-eyed deer 




We’re all tired now

Every soul worn down

Gnawed to the bone

We work dawn to dark

We don't take breaks 

No one notices the moon 

On the droned drive home

No one believes in stars anymore

So the constellations fall apart

They sound like needled sleet

Against the windshield glass

All we ever do is build fires

And melt piles of ice

We remember Prayer

But we’re done with prayers

Our knees hurt

And we kneel for no one

But our own noble exhaustions.

Nevertheless we don't sleep at home

We save sleeping for the day

So our grayed waking life becomes 

A dazzling bright dream 

We can only escape

By falling asleep from


Sunday, October 23, 2022



It’s all a cosmic conspiracy,

I’m starting to believe,

Playing out in an orderly fashion.

I think the sun cools into a planet

And the Earth becomes its moon

While nebulous dark matter

Swirls in spherical intensity

Until it gathers enough energy

To flash as first dawn 

Everything almost living

Is far away and shining 

Burning down to the range of vibrancy 

While some nameless ancestor grandfather

Is now a small black hole

Exerting calculable forces from afar

Drawing me closer and closer




My dad built a mansion on the ocean

Pilons sunk 300 feet for the foundation

Impregnable to storms from the Gulf

Undegreed, pronounces wash “warsh”

He made a life for himself 

He’s proud of himself

And if I ever saw him

I’d tell him so myself

I built a different kind of fortress

I take care of patients

I work long into the night

I am the one who suffers

To make things better for others

If he saw me he would 

Tell me to stop working so hard

My little girl cut herself

With a utility knife

Because of a grade on a test

And everything else.

There are no fortresses

Walls never last

The hurricane is coming

To knock everything down 

I’m so sorry

Do you know I’m sorry
I thought I was doing my best
Mostly good and overall not bad

But your hash marked soft flesh

Oh my princess

My sweetheart

Where are you dad


Tuesday, October 18, 2022



I get a little paranoid sometimes.

Sometimes it seems like the trees

are all looking at me

judging me 

whispering in the wind 

along the forest edge

with soughing passivity 

all the things everyone else knows

I ought not to have done

Autumn quiets those whispers.

I see the truth of the matter

as they flash orange and yellow.

Ominous jaundiced illness

Hang dog looks

Desperate clinging beauty

A silent inchoate mourning

They’re holding on as long as they can

Not their fault

Programmed to release

It’s only biology

It feels like they’re trying

to break it to me kindly

Maybe they desire my forgiveness

Maybe they deserve it

having done all they could

to halt the inevitable fall

Now displaying caution yellow

Maybe they've already forgiven themselves

Maybe it's a warning


Thursday, October 13, 2022



Let’s gather around and play

A game called epitaph 

The object of the game

Is to choose a pithy inscription

For your headstone without

Using any names (especially your own)

Or bracketed sets of numbers.

How do you answer?

What would you say?

Something heartfelt and banal like:

He loved his family and did his best?

An incantation from a witch's curse?

Maybe your favorite Bible verse?

Maybe an inside joke. Something ironic.

    The last thing you saw, a half drunk gin and tonic

I’ve narrowed my choices down to 3:

  1. Currently not available for comment. Please check back later

  2. Drank too much, ate too little

  3. Here lies the act before the ache

Honorable mention goes to maybe I’ll do better as soil and grass

Automatic disqualification for etching

Your notion of the meaning of life

Nobody really knows that

Otherwise every headstone

Would read the same

The winner is the one 

Who leaves his blank.

Not to make some sort of inscrutable

Existential eastern mystical statement.

More likely, he just ran out of time, 

Panicked, and now is too dead

To enjoy his hard earned victory


Wednesday, October 12, 2022


 Gray Day

Another gray day

Clouds sitting low and dour

But that’s okay

We can still have fun

You be the flower

And I'll be the sun


Tuesday, October 11, 2022


 The Miser

To a certain extent

The miser is one to be pitied.

Grew up poor, never had any money

And now he doesn’t know 

What to do with his riches.

He puts it all in one place

And watches it.

The squalor of stacks of golden coins.

He doesn’t lend it or give any away

Nor does he spend it on himself.

Dresses in unfashionable rags

Disdains the pretensions of nobility

Luxury he abhors

He drives a used Ford

He hoards it for when he may need it

Remembering what it feels like to need.

The same could be said for the lonesome boy

Who grows up to find himself

Suddenly a man, bursting at the seam

With untapped reservoirs

Of unused love



 Hiding Moon

It was a full moon morning

Albeit obscured by tapering

Clouds ink-spilled across the sky

Like a silhouetted witches broom

Like an ingenue hiding 

Coyly behind her splayed fingers

Seemed like such a waste

All that dazzling deep yellow light

I wanted to see it

In all its rounded completeness

I wanted to have it all

In the hour before the sun rises

But once again I missed

What was trying to be seen

Look, how eerie the lovely sky

How spectral the wispy clouds

How generous the moon


Sunday, October 9, 2022


 Honest Air

The air is crisp and cold again,

Has lost its languid indeterminacy.

Here, we can be honest again.

No more distracting small talk,

Sharing a sultry August air

Warmed by our feral lungs.

No more dawdling in fields

Pretending we have all summer 

To figure it all out

Honking geese fleeing

South, squirrels gathering

Nuts, trees reclaiming their peripheral 

Green, a world in a rush to finish up,

To store up all that’s left 

Before the first frost calcifies

Our living ground to cold bone 

And ices to stillness the arterial flow

Of our shallow brown river.

Each breath now is a stinging 

Rebuke of frigid austerity.

My eyes widen.

Nothing is hidden 

In this crystalline simplicity.

I am fully awake,

Distilled of all illusions. 

There is nothing to fear

Here, and nothing left to rue

Here, I don't wear a coat.

Hands go numb

And lips turn blue.

Each brief breath can be counted

As a series of tiny evanescent clouds.

I watch my body shiver.