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Today I reserve

Today I reserve to praise tapioca, the perfect composure of uncooked pearls, the unruly softness of finished pudding; such sweet solace, enfolding. Tomorrow is set aside for mixed beans, the certainty of their many forms that yield willingly in simmering broth, finished with salt; their reliable sustenance. The day after I will bow to coffee, […]

Openings

Why this persistence at closed doors, your bruised fist knocking at blighted exteriors beyond which lies nothing that wants you, while all around doors stand ajar, ready to yield to your open palm, waiting to sing you across their thresholds?

A Merry Little Christmas

Some day soon we all will be together, if the fates allow.  Until then, we’ll have to muddle through somehow. Wishing you well and muddling through, buoyed by the incomparable Judy Garland singing Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane.        

My life as an animal

I fell from the life of everything through warm, wet darkness, iron in my innocent mouth. I was born. Stood on spindly legs, nursed from the life of the world my first milk, its many protections. I was hers for awhile. Then my body changed, became larger. I moved on. Hungry, I ate. Thirsty, I […]

Leave nothing out

Love appreciated, she thought, is a well-wrought poem, each gesture essential,  any omission a violence, an ignorance of what is necessary. Elision may support a lie, ellipsis an efficiency, yet speaking a tongue we only half-shared, how could we know what was true, and what expendable? The last stanza, she thinks, should say nothing, leave […]

Pax vobiscum

How light their bearing on the other side of flesh; how weightless their love. The whispered endearment we almost hear; the soft pardon of long-ago sins. Peace be with you, they say. Pax vobiscum. It’s not ghosts who haunt us, but corpses not yet rotted into grace, blind and malodorous, loosing their longing, sloughing their […]

All will be well

My little black hen trails me, agitated by tectonic shifts in her young body: ova gathering, releasing, moving through the dark tunnel of her maturity. She has laid two eggs; still, the strange sensations trouble her. And why not? It is hard to lose your childhood, the first and least consolable grief. I cradle her, […]

Tempest

No one ever told me that grief felt so like fear.   — C.S. Lewis Four a.m. and the black wind thrashes implodes pauses resumes half-awake I quake like a primitive acute with smallness trembling with my part of the damage her warm weight and rumbling benediction have sweetened my life for years now my old […]

Bisection

Do deer exist in the dark? Or does dawn extrude them from night’s residual grace? I assume so much. Saw me in half; bid me choose: the omniscient brain drained of wonder, or blind legs that carry me, tentative and curious, through palpable air?        

Lot’s wife reflects

Grief, she thought, permeates everything, may bind and cast salt in the shape of a woman. And what of the backward look? Shall I not gaze upon what I love what I leave what I lose? Flesh, she thought, is wasted on those who flee the God of their fears and gone from me now, […]