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2011 Poems

January - April







Ever There         Print this poem only


You are never never in any land
where you cannot reach my hand
never never in any space
out of my embrace.

I fly between the windmill’s blades
in the rainbow and in the shades
in every corner of your anxious room
even in your desperate doom.

You and I have walked together
when you knew not whether
you would make it through the day
and you took your mind faraway.

But I was in your every hair and breath
where I will be until your death.
Your heart is full of mine
a vessel brimming with Divine.

So when you think you’ve crossed
into the desert and are lost...
Stop.  Fill your lungs with air.
And find me always and ever there.

Written 8-11-11 (original)











An Unlikely Valentine          Print this poem only


"Not to be sarcastic or anything

but thanks for fixing me something to eat!"


I pause - you know - one of those pregnant ones

full of tiny footsteps -

verging fulminations.

Excuses that won't sound as defensive

as the lattice fortress

I am erecting.

I am packing,


to an evergreen island

without the host of tiny

entanglements in this moment  with my bowl of soup.


Later in Hallmark crimson

I find the card,

the misty hint of tears

tickles my eyes.

It had to be written by someone

aged and smoked

in the poignant coalescence

of opposites

in an old love.


Waiting in the checkout line

I lean over to smell the roses

anticipating a letdown.

But suddenly I am cast

into the green waves

beyond Carmel.

Strains of McKuen and sandpipers

luxury of hair

moist lips

and the burgundy aroma

of my love.


Written 2-14-11







Cleaning House           Print this poem only


Kneeling on the tile floor,

with the nail of her index finger

she carefully scratches off three stubborn green spots

ignored from the past.


Lifts the family pictures on the piano

the souvenirs of New Mexico on the mantle

with the buffalo and St. Francis statue

and wipes away three weeks of dusty memories.


Arm muscles straining

she scrubs the black stria

of aluminum pots

left by pressured movement.


With studied swiftness

she wields the vacuum across floors

removing the dirt and detritus

of our daily grind.


I should imitate her.

Clean house

dwindle defects

make room


for a larger grace.


Written 10-28-11






Cosmic Ally          Print this poem only


Swans can kill the dying of the night

gliding arched anthems

past the imperfect light

of dreams.


Following their rippled path

I chase the hungry ghosts

of the past, leading them

into electric solitude.


Suddenly there is a coursing

through every fearful cell

awakening me to something grand or mindless

in the haze of my daze.


What ally can I find

or touch

in the grip of this power?


She is near

wandering a labyrinthine way

awaiting my brave

invitation to abide

in this wild cosmic moment.

Written 6-18-2011


Emerge          Print this poem only


I’ve never been a big fan of the past -

faithful as it is.


Standing before a thrift shop window

I would rather reflect on the reflected face

of the old woman standing next to me

than on the dusty books inside.


Faithful as it is

the past is fickle in the mind

that day at the beach brighter there

the harshness of her parting words darker

more poignant

pierced with pity.


By nature, I throw it away

glad to be rid of its tailings

ready to mine the next moment

for its yield

splendid in my imagining.


I’ve never been a big fan of pain

faithful as it is.

Attached to the grit of life

buried in the layers and crevices

of my brain

I discard its traces

at my peril.


But still

my present imagining

of the possibilities

propels me

to vanquish the demons

throw off the rusty chains

to emerge in this moment


to remember

to create.


Written 10-21-2011


How have I arrived here?           Print this poem only


this place in the sky

six hundred stories high

this cool winter night

to end this glorious flight.


I've climbed the stairs

sold my modest wares

to those who'd endure                   

the small adventure


of the heart and mind

who could leave behind

a few pounds of their past

to risk new sails on their mast.


At times I seemed a stranger

more than a visionary changer

one of a few crazy strays

soon to step into downy days.


Now that I arrive

still moving still alive

I stretch out my hands

to clutch the silver strands


of many a young and old

who joined me brave and bold -

in their eyes a sparkling gleam

born of courage and their dream.


They're touching my palms

and singing psalms

that will never leave

the tattered rugged weave


of bright joy and crimson pain

days of sun and nights of rain

woven to never part

in the fabric of my heart.


Author’s Note:  This was written in the final year of my teaching career.  I think I was thinking of my students and perhaps some kind of legacy or at least some remembrance of Mr. Currier, their teacher. 

Written 2-14-11








I'm not dead yet              Print this poem only     

Oh relentless soldier
with brassy determination
you invade embattlements
of my doubt and fear.

A secret agent,
you infiltrate every region.
Even in the darkest alien places
you plant
an unvarnished theology.
You never withdraw.
You leave your occupying force
mostly hidden.

Until I encounter the daffodil
springing up to surprise.
The little boy smiling at me.
The unusual ache in my hip
reminding me how close I am to seeing your shining face.

I am relentless too
against the scaly dogmas
the scandalous surrender
to aging’s decline.

My mind is a marathon runner.
No hostage to the fog
or the cape whose sticky tentacles
reach daily for my skin and bones.

Drivers race to pass me
on the right and left.
They challenge me on the periphery.
But they are the ones with tunnel vision.

My internal calibrations
have been worn by the years.
It is as if I cannot judge distances –
how long will it take?
How far have I gone
in this mysterious realm
into which I am accelerating?
My vision is endless.

The lanes cannot contain my vehicle –
it does not obey their confines.
My mind still flies and wanders the heavens,
never ceasing its crooked journey
challenging the captor fog.

I laugh at that cape
deride its inept trammel
ridicule its tattered attempts
at discouragement.
I will not bow to societal
or biological inevitability-sayers.

I’m not dead yet you sons of bitches!

Written 3-3-11

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