Writing Poetry

I finished reading your book

and now know its all been written

Plath and her marriage

Oliver’s wild geese

Shakespeare’s folly

Whitman and his grass

Chaucer’s bawds

But this I know

that I woke one morning

and knew my life was charmed

and when that door opened

I walked thru it

into a Child’s Garden of Verse

life is long

and its sonnets are evergreen


they’re not the cottonwoods

or live oaks from my childhood

climbing trees and leafy hideaways

where library books

and pb&js were squirreled away

on long summer days

no they are trees unfamiliar to me

standing watch over my doorway

in the last home of my life

where I will spend long summer days

with books and pb&js

squirreled away in their shade

not cold but not warm

Even though I no longer like the cold weather, for some reason my body is missing the frigid walks along the waters edge. The north wind slicing through layers and layers of sweaters and scarves and jackets like a very cold butter knife. And I seem to be expecting the fog to settle in and gray skies to be all I see except here, its sunny and not cold but dont get me wrong its not warm.

Its the blue skies so far that have me stunned in a good way because that fog would get in my mind and cover my eyes and my mouth until I was suffocated in its grieving heartless grayness.

I can live with not cold but not warm and the blue sky can visit my morning window all it wants cause this might be the last place I live and I will gladly die here in the blue skyness of it all.

Cottage of the Waning Moon

It all started with a phone call from Kansas City, of all places and with it came a great wind. Not a derecho like the one in Cedar Rapids, of all places, that blew all the trees down and left my poor friend’s garden a wreck.

Nope, it was a great wind blowing east and even though it was a call from Kansas City, of all places, I’m not Dorothy and I didn’t end up in Oz even though I have a small dog that kinda looks like ToTo. No, not Oz but North Carolina, of all places.

It blew me from a house that I lived in for twenty years and though it was a nice house and all and it never gave me a minutes worry and it was surrounded by heron wings and bluebirds and a thousand hummingbirds who about ate me out of house and home and that is just an expression, anyway, I never gave my heart to that perfectly nice home.

Instead, this wind from the west blowing east that all started with that phone call from Kansas City, of all places. It blew me to a little cottage that appeared in my dreams and was mine in a former life if I believed in that sort of thing but maybe I do ’cause I love this house like a mother loves a child or maybe more like a dear old friend that you haven’t seen in years and years and you run into unexpectedly on the street, of all places, and you cry and hug and kiss until you are so filled with gladness that you are satiated with just so much love.

And its all because of that phone call. From Kansas City, of all places, that I am in this magical little cottage in North Carolina, of all places. And

You never know when you pick up that phone

what wind might blow.


Advent in the Time of Covid

Bright sun nudges me from my page,
opening a hole deep as the grave
in the worn carpet.
How can this season of joy
and wonder, innocent delight
be lived in such a time?
When death stops at so many doorways,
uninvited and rude,
taking the good from so many tables.
We light a candle,
keeping the darkness at bay.
It’s Advent in the time of covid.

November Morning

Its not withstanding the urgency
of breath and feeling,
molding into those things which
we say and do within our masks,
hiding in each moment.
But there are times,
when letting guards down,
we recognize our real faces
and wings unfurl
in the cold light of a November morning.
Wedge of deep silver
shadowed against the breast
of stone and water
opening isthmus arms
crux of land and sky
embracing water, earth deep,
bronze and gold, russet, indigo.
And leaving the warmth of bed and nights embrace,
I stretch toward the dark dawn,
aware of all mortality and grace
and the singular thought of ones life.
This too shall pass and like the meadow grasses
separating grain from chaff,
my soul will someday join the autumn wind
and sing shining into the cold morning.