let me be solemn in Yosemite

i have not made the world my home
nor have i considered the egos of nighttime mountains

their bare bones make no difference to me
as i sit in a darkened bus exhaling a ring of fumes,
an open-mouthed wreath gifted to the world

i have never spoken to the brokenness of bridal
veil falls, even though she waits for me ’til morn
like a petulant little sister connected solely by chance

i suppose,
there is something though, beyond all my dumb breathing
beneath all this tumbling, and all-out burning of mother
and father, sister and brother stars

if, and when,
things are as they should be, i will latch onto the musical
strings written expressly for me, and dance holding onto
the hem of your skirt which is not one of the least of these;

thank you,
please, for wildflowers sleeping


17: NaPoWriMo and Real Toads

Act II in four parts

When they say come a little closer

It means pallid butter rum
Cake served with black coffee, – a
Deciduous destruction
A falling

Nervy girl

I strike a match anyway,
Ignoring all the kindling
I know…

I adopt a saloon girl’s name

A certain dark spice, because I’m
A black mark match, and even if a
Spade’s an outright spade, and his
Tongue’s lapping up the dregs,
My heart is gone

It’s turning red-white

My heart I keep to myself; no one believes me
I’m going to marry the preacher man

wrapped in the sweetest beginning i think

i come from nothing, but i’ll find my way of this
as i grow and grasp to close these intangible tabs
reaching for dreamy words to shut up withery skies
straining to clamp oyster eyes together; a stop gap
for saying everyone’s pearls are the same-same.

i come from backlogs, from avocado green couches
from whence sprang some well-grounded whispers;
but i believe in night, and i believe it’s okay to sleep
on heartache as i’ve supposed i’ll be living a long-long
time, so help me God in these nothing-but-nothings.


for Real Toads

How Much is a Penny?

Step lively round the hollow men
Hollow men hollow men
Step lively around the hollow men
God knows what time in the morning.

Between the shape and the form,
Between the color and the shade,
Between the gesture and the motion,
The forgotten grail, a shallow dish.

[Borrowing T.S. Eliot’s broodiness
on such a day as this~ for Real Toads]

a great i

so much depends

a great tear-

a great omni-

a great i with clean

{after William Carlos Williams
for  Fireblossom at Real Toads}

thinking about the place where we lived

a church on the corner
reminded us that God
was as close to us as
my little brother’s
stinky friend
Larry McDowell
(the other corner-dweller)

playing it again for MZ at Real Toads

you want the hill country?

you’re discontent
you want greatness

you’ve got to go chop
your own menacing lumber

yesterday’s swing fell short and
yonder lies your strength if you believe
[yes, i believe] you’re greater than the giants

for Real Toads


if you were God, or Paul Ekman,
you would have known right off
in the garden under sad moon lamp
that Adam was lying, but to be sure,
you could ask– a courtesy, or open book
or open door to second chance.
but muscles twitched– subtly wrong
for a fraction of a second. observable
as Mona Lisa’s flirty smile,
or Bill Clinton’s clean &jerk jaw.
in 10,000 possible expressions
lies the atlas of the human face.
there is a tell. there is a know.

Poetic Asides & Real Toads

untitled doodle by Ted Gordon
untitled doodle by Ted Gordon

How To Tell Secrets &Truths

i have my secrets
i am my secrets
i long to be known
i fear to be known
friends are strangers
we are each other
except by consent
{island calls to island}

i whistle in the dark
won’t someone listen
to my indecencies
won’t someone utter my name
hey poet, hey lunatic, hey lover

i don’t deserve to taste
raspberries and creme
but i do

in silence
in silence
&God &life
&life is beautiful
&terrible &not at all
this is a holy mystery
a secret truth
adding up to very little
or very much

for Poetic Asides