Lackawanna, burning

Bethlehem is burning
it must be a metaphor
for this city
this life
this politics
sending ash into eyes

almost like  smoke
other older factories striped into sky
at scheduled intervals

but this black startles
seen from my ridge
20 miles away
a line of charcoal
interrupting a watercolor sunset

we roll up windows
and drive through it
the stink and haze filling streets

memory is toxic
especially breathed deep.

Posted in New Free Verse | Tagged , , , ,

100 kA over 80 seconds

I have no patience
for saints
or ministering angels

Instead let my life
the work and power of it
be testimony enough

fast and deadly
as lightning in a June garden

Posted in life, New Free Verse | Tagged , | 2 Comments


Senseless and repeated
loud as rounds in a magazine
shot empty

After, my ears ring
as lips move, shaping
the same arguments

A Chinese water torture of lead
roughening skin past feeling
beyond a tendency to bleed

to a point past caring
but never to acceptance.

Posted in New Free Verse | 2 Comments

I’ll not number your wrongs against mine
measured in sterile clicks of abaci
some might call forgiveness
this walking away
from counting everything

Instead of seeing
a deep weariness of keeping track
and surrender to the weight of each
colored glass bead
no longer strung and framed, but freed

and falling in a rainbowed hail
to spread over everything

no longer reigned in.

Posted in New Free Verse | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Requiem for an appliance

Something standing in a house
eight years unmoving
should be family–
those people
we cannot move easily,
stubbing toes
sometimes on their hard edges
& them without the grace or ability
to apologize (it was our toes
kicking them after all)

either way
something should be said
about the fridge dying
besides a complaint
that the beer is warm as piss
as the scrapper wheels the corpse
out the door, like maybe
thanks for all the ice cream


At Dverse, it is all about doors, and I reworked a piece about something wheeled out of a door 😉

Posted in New Free Verse | Tagged , , | 52 Comments

Kitchen magic

Today we learn
a cure for homesickness
we jar like honey
and a dessert
to sweeten loneliness
a bitter zest only palatable
after rounded by time

I will shape a magic
of butter and flour under my hands
and whispering
simply one name

conjure happiness
that others
will simply name biscuits
not understanding
the taste of tears under their tongues
strangely salty

but sweet.

Posted in New Free Verse | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

Don’t get carried away by this–quadrille rewrite

Give me 59 small stones for my pocket
and i will skip prayers across my creek
for you

that’s my faith–
in stones and things harder than stone;

pebbles my rosary
and prayer is not just inside a voice
but in it’s skipping over.

Posted in dverse poetry prompt, New Free Verse, quadrille | Tagged , , | 38 Comments