Monday, July 28, 2014

Inside the fridge

Hunger isn't why I stand before
my mother’s fridge in my work clothes
and peer inside the vicious white light
like that laboratory I once worked in
(those skinned cats nailed to clipboards!) 
but here there's only one lump of flesh--
a chicken leg attached to a meaty thigh.
That's what I find in her fridge most 
days I visit--raw meet, an apple turnover
or two, milk and eggs, white bread.
None of which I ever eat.
It's just a habit: walk in the house, 
drop my purse on the floor, 
and look in the fridge even
though it's been 30 years since I left home
(and have my own home and fridge).
That's what a habit does to a person.
You do the same thing over and over knowing, 
maybe even hoping, the outcome 
never changes.
You just keep doing it 
because it feels so good, so right, 
because your mind can go flat and quiet, 
you can forget your cares, 
and what's better than that?


My mother calls to tell me how nice 
her flowers look in their window pots  
warm with summer sun. 
Her voice light and high--
she’s practically singing-- 
as if the sun shines on her alone.
That brave soul! Badly wounded 
but never down for long. 
Those flowers are fake!
But she loves them more for this 
very reason.
They will outlive the living blooms
that leave her to sweep up their decay 
and make her start anew. 
Much better fake! 
Durable, practical, just as lovely--
but nothing fragile flows through 
their polymer stems.
Time does not spoil their skins, 
their thorns never cut, 
she can hold in her hand a world 
without end.

Monday, July 21, 2014

It's too late now....

.....for the dream daughter son husband 
to sit around with me on the beach blanket  
and talk in happy voices about their good jobs 
and good homes and good politics 
and breathe in the spicy gusts of sea breeze 
together, with a kind of ecstasy, 
and with all that combined happiness, 
lift me, cartwheel me across the salt dab sands, 
rolling head over head, lightly, 
end over end, lightly, 
on and on, like tumble weed, 
uprooted, inspired deeply, moved deeply, 
satisfied deeply, 
as if there is nothing I should be doing 
and they doing everything they should be doing.
It is too late in the day 
to change the day.  
All is all. 
But if I could revoke, would I?
Now that I've bonded so deeply 

with the anti-dream?

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Under my skull roof

A believer and nonbeliever 
go about their days with rarely a quarrel.
One stands very still to hear the great spirit speak 
in the Mourning Dove coos and the salt winds 
and in the bob cat hiss. 
The other of the metropolis, of devices and data, 
concrete, car horns, and microwave peeps.
They meet hour by hour in my body, 
unable to speak a common language 
but aware of one other--
not friends, not enemies--each busy 
with itself,  its point of view. 
Neither comprehends a purpose, 
though one can sense a great direction,
while the other sees such thoughts as
just thoughts--axons addressing dendrites--

nature talking to itself. 

Thursday, July 3, 2014


Today I forgave my beloved 
for whatever harm ever 
he has done me. 
All of me forgave
all of him. 
Forgiveness beats 
against my heart like the pump 
in our old aquarium,
I feel the tickle of little fins 
swim through me. 
As if no harm had ever 
been done 
or its affects now long gone, 
those old harms buried 
in the muck, gray and bloated 
at the bottom of our lives, 

here and there just flotsam. 

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Abortion crossed her mind, my mother twists 
herself in the chair when she confesses that to me, 
her brown eyes frisking my brown eyes, 
but find no attitude, no back talk.
It does not phase me to know I might not be here, 
may have been nipped in my bud-hood. 
I feel my worth, know it was him not me
she sought escape from.
I can see her without me 
and see she would also be without them--
this sister, these brothers of mine,
the timing without me for all 
would have become altered--
other eggs would have waited and yoked, 
and then who would she be talking to now?
And would she be saying, 
You almost had an older sister? 
And me, just a tiny boney fish, 
would have lived and died in a dream 
like no other, 
but here we are, my mother laughs, 
squirming. Here we are, we two.
She had to get it all out, I understand. 
She deserves much more happiness 
and that little glob of semirigid polymer
gladly would have given 
herself up for such a worthy cause.