Publications Category

A Bosom Friend

*A Bosom Friend   Anna, you are two rooms away studiously turning disaster into art.  How do you spell earthquake? How do you spell smoke? At the bottom of your paper a dashed-off sketch in red ink of houses burning and falling.  This picturing gift was born in you but the words above the flames […]

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The Sermon

The Sermon*   Sometime during grade school the drone from the front of the room pinned hot legs under sticky desks while our green thoughts flew out the window. Tell the truth sing the green bird thoughts from the green leaves. Tell the truth.  No more disembodied songs.   Sherry Robbins, from Or, the Whale, […]

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The Pulpit

The Pulpit   There is a shape in the stomach when a body falls off the end of the watery world. A shape to the way it swims back up toward distorted light. Mother, father, pack up their past for the future in this way. A leaf falls. Moss twirls on stone. Stars reel apart. […]

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The Street

The Street   Everyone in this town knows it was built on water and what that water carried – grain and lumber and power – west to east. Mansions stand on that history, parks and avenues fanned out like Frenchmen on parade.   The only things that flow through now are themselves liquid: words, drink, […]

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Interlude

Interlude  The insects             build a wave of sound                   that crests subsides         then             silence   The past does its best             to fill it but they           the insects built it              silence    too well   Exhausted on the bank the beach the edge of “next” it’s all the welcome all the prayer             […]

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Flicker

Flicker   You were up for your nursing home shift. I was up to feed the baby. We would meet in the bathroom, 4 A.M. I’d sit on the edge of the tub to nurse while you checked your teeth, your bangs, your white scrubs in the mirror with its two dim bulbs. What did […]

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Nights and Stars

Nights and Stars   There are nights at sea when everything I think I know about stars is exploded by the great mass of them, their clamor and proximity. The universe then becomes a single song, however infinite its notes and rhythms.   The women I sail with hum when aloft, afraid a little of […]

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Hide and Seek*

Hide and Seek   I’m half-way there in a half-way house sometimes hiding in my room, sometimes blowing out the walls, blowing the roof off with my conviction—some alchemical stew of baseless confidence and putrefying bits of fact. It keeps me immortal while others die on home cooking. I don’t know why. Assassins still come […]

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Challenge*

Hide and Seek I’m half-way there in a half-way house sometimes hiding in my room, sometimes blowing out the walls, blowing the roof off with my conviction—some alchemical stew of baseless confidence and putrefying bits of fact. It keeps me immortal while others die on home cooking. I don’t know why. Assassins still come after […]

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A Trick of Light*

A Trick of Light   Not layers, these dense states,    no sequence of             time served             virtue rewarded    no quest   no rescue All here, braided. Always here             and not.   How did it begin?             with light, of course, piercing falling breaking open to a single word    ripening apples   […]

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