Wednesday, October 25, 2017


Wind on metals,

a match made 

in heaven,

a sound fluent 

in sorrow and joy, 

each note 

a simple spirit

that tows me 

from my self 

into the eye 

of a storm, 

a center, free, 

no agitation; 

whatever I do, 

wherever I stand, 

the ting ting ting 

brings me to a pause;

my crouching soul 

stands up 

and bows to it,

feels each note 

enter as a kind word, 

feels the ting ting ting 

of grace, 

the ting ting ting 

of blessing 

come over me.  

I say, gather me 

and ting to me 

and seal me up. 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Counting the damage

What if I forget him?
What if he blurs like a good vacation?
Already I have to concentrate, piece him 
together as a puzzle, matching the bits into familiar
body parts--his swollen knee, wrist with
fancy watch, lips pinched into a trumpet.   
What if the pieces tatter? 
Stop fitting? 
What if one day I can’t recall 
but a moment? 
Already a hush settles into every crevice 
as if stillness were normal in our house.
Already I have grown used to having 
no one in love with me.
I frame photos with the breath of panic,
mail his face to everyone.
I will not count his memory
among all the other damage.


Don’t turn away 
from the mirror. 
Keep looking 
at what you’re made of--cloth strong 
enough to be a flag and don’t forget 
he loved you 
for your spine 
that’s not crocheted but woven 
tight as burlap
and because your heart is spun 
of silk, 
its long threads pulled 
from countless other acts 
of metamorphoses.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

How to remember

For quality memories, first blanche them; 
the dirt will ruin all. 
Peel off the shade before storage. 
Like the day you played hooky 
with a married old professor.
Keep only his grateful kisses,
how tenderly he squeezed your hand goodbye. 
Store only drops of joy, hold on 
to the sweet seeds and juice. 
Memories can be chopped up any way you like; 
almost none can be kept whole. 
So stick with the best parts, the parts least 
bruised and spoiled, snip what lacks the flavor 
of happy recollections. 
I can tell you that grief and other passions 
loosen the tough skins of bitter times––they slip 
off easily. Let the pealed memories cool 
then store them in your heart's larder. 
When you’re ready, behold this delicious jam, 
savor it for the rest of your days.