tanka

tanka--
small songs I sing
to join
my voice to other voices
hidden in the grass

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Shadows on the Grass

in the cellar
of my old home,
butterflies
pinned in a cigar box . . .
one by one I let them go

all the bits 
and pieces of myself
I’ve left behind . . .
oak and willow set new buds
before the old leaves fall

folding the map 
with its worn creases 
I follow 
an unknown path . . . 
the shimmer of small wings

striding
toward the winter solstice
arm in arm
with the death crone . . .
flowers spring up at her feet


      ~Ribbons 10:1, Winter 2014


Sunday, July 20, 2014

arrested

arrested
for reading aloud after curfew
the names of the dead . . .
how far their voices carry
in the dark

       ~Atlas Poetica 17, March 15, 2014


IQ testing 
of an inmate
on death row—
a pencil hovers 
over the final question

       ~A Hundred Gourds 3:3, June 2014



Saturday, July 12, 2014

city lights

plastered
on corrugated metal,
this enormous eye . . .
I enter the city
through its lake of light

       ~Atlas Poetica 17, March 2014


bumping fists,
two homeless men
unfold their cardboard
messages of need . . .
the lone poem in my pocket

       ~Atlas Poetica 17, March 2014


Friday, July 4, 2014

sunflowers





           a phone rings
           changing everything
           I rearrange
           the sunflowers bowing
           in a pewter pitcher


                         ~GUSTS 17, spring/summer 2013 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

birthday morning


on stems
crusty with lichens,
blueberries 
ripening—
birthday morning

   ~GUSTS 18, Fall/Winter 2013


shutter speed
too slow to catch
the gloss
of falling water. . .
my sixty-fourth year

   ~Skylark 1:2, winter 2013

Saturday, June 21, 2014

prickles of mist

summer solstice—
prickles of mist
dissolving
the old ghosts 
inside my skin


      ~The Bamboo Hut 1:1, August 2013


passing strangers
on a rain-drenched road
we turn back 
to ask their stories
. . . finding only mist


    ~Tinywords 14.1, May 2, 2014






Friday, June 13, 2014

Deep River



I listen
for the sound of water 
in a dry stream bed . . .
the pulse of yes 
beginning in my veins

a spring
rises out of the earth—
I drink
from its oak-dark eye
a glimmer of starlight 

water
like silk against my skin
I swim naked
in a sea of words
waiting to be born


    ~Lynx 29: 1, Feb. 2014