tanka

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

Saturday, August 31, 2013

hummingbirds and a monarch's wing


hummingbirds
suspended in mid-air
above the buddleia
all the questions
I’ve never asked

Atlas Poetica 14, March 2013



in my pocket
the monarch’s wing
I’ve saved
against the day
I’m ready to migrate

red lights 9:1,  Jan. 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Glyphs


stone rooms
filled with Mayan dreams—
the wings
of frightened swallows
beat against my chest

Chaak the rain god’s
blackened face
rising
over the temple steps
a double rainbow

a jade mask
for a dead king . . .
in the window
of the tourist bus
the beggar’s face

crutches
on cobblestone . . .
the boy
with the withered foot
hawks used shoes

an altar stone
grooved for the flow of blood . . .
in each little shop
an armed guard
struts his shotgun

the sun god’s
nightly passage
through a two-headed snake—
I dream of finding
the second mouth

wisps
of smoke rising
from a ritual fire
we cleanse ourselves—
these bundles of rue

flower water
in a plastic bottle
tucked
in my carry-on
the shaman’s essence

Atlas Poetica 14, March 2013

~Impressions of our trip to Mayan sites in Belize, Guatemala, and Honduras in November 2012. 


Tuesday, August 20, 2013

two late-summer tanka


the ratcheting
of katydids’ did or didn’t
did or didn’t . . .
all night your words
rasping in my mind


rambling
a hundred yards to climb
the fence—
morning glory vines
so sure of what they seek


A Hundred Gourds  2:1,  December 2012

Friday, August 9, 2013

[an eggplant. . . ]



an eggplant
squats on the counter
fecund and faceless
as the Venus of Willendorf –
my knife in midair