Thursday, June 18, 2009

March 15, 2009

In her dream
Calpurnia said
the Romans
washed their
hands in her
husband's blood.

In my dream
I had no husband,
so the blood
must have been mine,
and the Romans,
my daily apparitions,

were gathered
with daggers
that sparkle
like minnows.

March 14, 2009

When I was in high school
we talked about the atom.
To give us a better perspective,
Coach Clark told us to look
at the thickness of our paper.
What barely seemed measurable,
he said was countless atoms
stacked upon one another.

For the rest of the day
I remember fearing
what would happen
when these little atomic towers
all came tumbling down.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

March 13, 2009


The cheerleaders are back.
Like grackles or ptarmigans
or some other migrating bird
that comes from the north,
they have returned.

They are scattered among the
restaurants along University,
pecking in large groups about
bowls of chips and salsa.

They stop traffic near the
baseball field, one long river
of pigtails and pep, balancing pretention
like a liberty on their glossy lips.

But on the basketball courts,
huddled like flamingos
they squawk and shout,
screaming with their painted beaks
and stretching their featherless wings
to what they have made
an unconquerable god.

March 12, 2009

Apple Dreams

I stole a nap today
just before the sun took its final bow.

Swimming in the small pond of
my olive green bed,

I floated belly-up, two
pillows beneath my heavy head.

Awaking in an early evening dream,
I rose covered in apples,

all red and brilliant and rolling
off my arms and legs.

And as I stepped out of my bed,
I stepped onto the slick skin of an apple;

then sliding across its peel,
I crossed the hall into my little

crate of a bathroom. Flipping on the light
I saw an apple staring back at me

in the cabinet mirror hung precariously
above my sink that only spills hot water.

Stumbling, now blind with my
unpeeled eyes and waxy skin,

I fell back into the bushel of my bed.
I awoke 3 hours after I first closed my eyes.

My Magritte dreams now orchards away,
I opened the refrigerator and retrieved a peach,
felt and cold and sweet, I ate it, bitterly awake.

March 11, 2009

The oscillating fan shakes his
dissapproving head slowly
like my father.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

March 10, 2009


I stepped onto a bus today
and it was not the Hollywood
hoke of San Fansisco or Penn Station.

There was no smoke or gloved
hands waving, no tearful eye
covered by a drawn vale.

The children who chase the train
out of the station were elsewhere,
perhaps doing shorthand trigonometry
perhaps playing a video game,
perhaps watching an old
black and white movie
watching the children run,
wondering why there are no longer
any Hollywood trains to catch.

Friday, June 5, 2009

March 9, 2009

Upon Seeing a Plane Crash

In the aftermath, among the
twisted wings and bouyant seats,

I hope they find a hand
clutching another hand.

And whether it was in desperation,
fear, or anger, we can all pretend

that in those last moments,
as the hushed corn rose to meet them,

there was love.

March 8, 2009

I will tell you before
we die how once I kissed
you in your sleep.

How the fan spun above us
unaware, and how the pillows
held their paper tongues.

I will tell you before
we die how I once kissed
you in your sleep.

How you smiled.

How you did not see me in the morning.

March 7, 2009


Gather around the fire men
smoke smoke talk talk and
lace your lives together.

And when you wake tomorrow
lift your arma nd feel the
weight of your brothers,
not the dull hum of gravity,
but the balletic sweep of water
that makes each move so significant.

And when you wake far from them,
feel your brothers like
a storm blowing in, the cold
belly of the wind, the trees
in a passionate pantomime.
Let them run through your hair and
beneath your chin. Feel them on
your legs and shoulders.
Look up at the sky and pray for rain.

And when you wake an old man,
hum them like a song your
grandfather once sang. Hold
them in your mouth like music.
Remember the days when you were
first laced together.
Now open your brittle lips and
watch the smoke pour out, talk
talk as the embers twitch
and yawn.

March 6, 2009

Upon Graduation
For my friends at Pearce High School

You are not tamed men,
not you, not with your
fierce eyes and fiery throats.
You are not meant to be still,
to watch and wait.
These quiet lives are for other
men, vessels to carry the water
you are commissioned to bring
forth out of the thirsty ground.

You are not tamed men, for
the leashes and lashes could not,
would not hold you.
The lockless fetters woven by the world
caould not, would not keep you in one
place, so like a quiet wind, you
slip in and out of their doors and bars.
And when you gather, you hurricane
a spirit through the open cathedral walls.

No, you are not tamed men.
Not you.
You are instead the beasts of a
bold God, made in His image,
Temporarily pulsing in your thin and
thinning cages that must also set you

March 5, 2009


Riding on the choppy waves
of this man-made lake,
it is hard to imagine
there is a town beneath us.

Spacious 3-bedroom homes,
gas stations, and post offices
settled in the mud, some
40 feet below.

How strange it must be
for the fish who swim
there, those 80-pound monsters,
brushing an oven with their tails,
filling an abondoned day bed
with thousands of their pea-size eggs.

And what of the mailboxes, small rusting cans
Whose mail sits 40 feet above, undeliverable.

March 4, 2009

Wasps' Nest

Standing up quickly today
I saw spinning wasps of light.
They droned like deflating balloons
to the left and right of my eyes.

I imagine that above me
there must be a nest of them
waiting for some daring child
to throw a clump of dirt
or a nearby stick
and wake their thunderous light.