Category / Current

Three Poems

From Blue as White (The Book of Margins) by Helga Landauer-Olshvang     Get out alive – spine, spleen, whole fistfuls –away!— of my crimson, partly white (wild) shoulders, elbows, heaping fistfuls of passion, how do I run all this out


“…has created the type of autonomous picture, which leads, without motifs from nature to  a completely abstract life form…as a Bach fugue is from a carpet.”––Paul Klee   Stepping off the door lintel, down onto the grass as the day

Given Plums

Early July my sister and I filled two sacks of plums from our orchard. We shook each tree until the ripest orbs fell from highest branches, closest to the sun.  The less ripe ones hit hard as hail.  The softer

Maria’s Yellow Coat

I haven’t had a whole lot of what you might call ‘sartorial smarts.’   But outside the café where Maria once sat in her belted yellow long coat there’s an empty chair— this wooden folding chair functioning under the same


What else would I do on the river but set my nets and listen to old blood-drenched stories, growl as I penetrate her and make a golden son for when I’m gone? Fine, that was then. But on this bank

Thanksgiving Chorus

Kindergarteners beautiful and dumb beam on risers to sing the goofy words their teacher drilled ad nauseam all week. She stands before them now, her soundless mouth stretching every syllable. No one holds hand-cut cardboard muskets as I once did,


It was her voice that made the sky acutest at its vanishing. “The Idea of Order at Key West”.   I learned it in art class, second grade, how to make my crayon portraits of our house, posted by Mother

Of Course

If I wake at 3, ephemerality Is leitmotif.  Small wonder in that, of course: Tempus fugit. The years go hurtling by. Like any other bromides, these became What they are for their truth.  It’s only a vapor, Say, that version

Two Poems

Some Propositions with Children   The child is completely immersed in childhood the child doesn’t know what to do with childhood the child coincides with childhood the child lets childhood invade him like sleep his head falls and he’s adrift


i.   Five years of nothing. Then, one night she calls and tells: she followed him, and “sure enough he visited my so-called friend, Charise.” I have my own failed marriage story. She’s heard. But she’s not calling to commiserate.

Two Poems

LONG AFTER HE IS GONE   All the summer’s night I dream I am awake reading, following sentences that follow a woman who finds her husband by following his footsteps in snow. She needs to forgive him, to be forgiven.

Summer circa 1967-2xxx

My mother & the other ladies lie prone in plastic yellow and green lounge chairs on our front lawn. Tin foil reflectors emanate from their necks like limbs. Baby oil–smeared on their faces and arms. They glow, glow, glow in


A jostle of stars at the edge of the Crab Nebula pinpoints the heart of Taurus. Under the right conditions, with a steady hand, you can see it with binoculars. As with most things, the conditions are rarely right, the

On the Grounds of the Zendo

“The face of the Buddha’s so smooth,” she whispered, running her hands over the garden statue, “except for these little indentations here and there where the stone’s been chipped.”  That was her way with almost everything:  first look, then close

Two Poems

FAMILY BATTLES   1. Christmas 1964 My uncle stares at the TV throughout Our midday feast, erupts with “Fucking Krauts” Three times, which I’ll repeat on the way home And be spanked, my Barbie taken from me. We didn’t often