“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


truth hearts blood in six sentences

i stabbed my finger, the one i point with, the overworked one right there on my right hand, a hidden sliver of broken glass the culprit, and the band-aid drags across the keyboard, misspelling words and adding unwanted spaces.  such a tiny spot, no bigger than a pencil point - still, i thought it would never stop bleeding.

it did.


it's after 9 on a monday night.
i can't see this little heart in the darkness, but i know it's out there,
across the bridge, almost to the garlic plant.
good enough.



everything in moderation

sunday morning dishes in the sink.
where they will stay all day.

i am camera-less this weekend, and with that, never minding that i've taken so few pictures for months, i suddenly feel the need to take pictures, and so finally, at long last, way-overdue-i-know, i have found my way to instagram.  it may work for the small moments, of which i have many.  the cat is flying yowling about the house, wanting me to play, there is laundry to be done, the house could not be any messier, i am out of paper towels,  i still need to shower, and outside the day is too wonderful to ignore.  life feels just fine.


friday night a neighbor wandered up with a bottle of 6 dollar wine and katie, he, and i stood in the front yard and talked until the bottle was empty and he was pointing out the moon to us.  everything in moderation, we said, except standing under a soon-to-be-summer sky, except for the stars, except for the honeysuckle lighting the night behind us.

i am a storyteller, you know, not a poet.  unless, of course, the story requires it.




the jingle belle cat is on the back porch most every morning, waiting for me to open the blinds, perched on a bench, staring right back at me when daylight floods the kitchen.  she sneaks in through skyecat's entrance and eats her food and drinks her water.  i am thinking of renaming her goldilocks.

this morning, however, is full of rain and a robin in that rain,  it is skyecat on the couch next to me, lulled to sleep by the sound of the creek outside the open front door, running higher this morning, and louder.


i need the small things this week.
i wrap my arms around them and give them thanks.



unexplored territories

an image from last april, when the sun was out and the heat was mostly here,
and i wasn't surrounded by sneezes.  

stepping outside one's comfort zone.

"To step out of the comfort zone raises the anxiety level engendering a stress response,
the result of which is an enhanced level of concentration and focus."

i do this occasionally.  on purpose, i mean.  i go places that scare me, i do things that make my belly uncomfortable, and what i've found is that, for me, recuperation takes a while.  it's supposed to be good for you - this not being comfortable business - and i know it is, but i always need some time to myself afterwards.  i get angry at myself for even thinking  it's good for me - noises sound too loud and i am annoying and the words don't come and i am not pleasant to be around, and i don't even care.  i say adios words, who needs you anyway, and i turn on a baseball game or read a few pages, and i breathe a big sigh of relief.  never again, i tell myself.  never.

it is a lie i tell myself.  myself doesn't believe it, but she listens anyway.

i originally, mistakenly typed that muself, and there you go.  the truth.  myself is the muse.  muself knows what to do. muself knows to take a week away from writing or people or washing the dishes, or whatever, and just let myself find my way back to myself.  muself is smarter than me.

and with that, another awakening, and i will say the words, and then i will just hush.  one last thought about two years ago, the year my mother died, the year i drove to florida to meet beth and other wonderful women.  way way way  outside my comfort zone, but i did it anyway, and i had a wonderful time, helped by them and by the ever-wonderful michael, they  all knowing i could do this, all there to catch me if i fell.  when i got home, i did fall - into bed and into work and into trying to catch my breath, but before that breath was caught, my mother was hospitalized, and then gone.  i have never caught that breath, and i never knew why until now.

"Anxiety improves performance until a certain optimum level of arousal has been reached.
Beyond that point, performance deteriorates as higher levels of anxiety are attained;
if a person steps beyond the optimum performance zone they enter a "danger zone"
in which performance will decline rapidly as higher levels of anxiety or discomfort occur."

i'm a little stunned.  of course.  of course.


it is sunday morning and my sneezing has stopped.  yesterday i bought white flowers for the back porch and dried apricots and almonds drizzled with dark chocolate.  i bought key limes and organic onions and i drove places and didn't take my camera and that felt like freedom.  when i saw a roadside covered in blue wildflowers i stopped and stood in their midst and used my iphone to take pictures - i will show you later.  i am at last catching that breath.


quotes from wikipedia


diner a-z

she said she was singing words,
but i misheard that as slinging words,
and liked it better,
could just see the tiny word diner, 
the waitresses plopping down plates of poetry for breakfast.

the lunch specials would change each weekday;
monday being monday, they let the verbs wait, serving up nouns instead.
tuesday will be small plates of adjectives - you only need a few.
by wednesday you are ready for meaty novels full of meaning
to be discussed on thursday over limerick desserts with coffee.
friday is romance novels.

poetry is reserved for saturday, 
for late lingering breakfasts and champagne brunches;
the taste of the words will stay on your tongue until sunday,
when the diner is closed and you have to cook breakfast yourself.
you've gathered the ingredients all week without thinking.
open the refrigerator door and see.

stir with love and serve with strawberries.


for napowrimo, 2013
30 poems in 30 days


what's so funny 'bout peace, love & understanding?

my father's cousin married a black man and her family at first was, well,
but they met him and he played 42 on a card table out in the yard just like he was white
and one of them,
and he laughed at the same jokes,
and after that first visit who he was had nothing to do with the color of his skin.


she parks her car backwards in her driveway.
it's a black thing,  she once told me,
and when i asked her what that meant,
she explained it was all about getting away in a hurry just in case, you know,
and, seriously, i had to laugh,
and so did she,
and she admitted that she said that to make herself smile,
that in truth it was because she so often needed to jump start her battery,
and she wasn't lying about that,
she has more dead batteries than anyone i've ever known, black, white, or brown.
her car stares at me from across the street and i almost feel sorry for it.

the truth had nothing to do with the color of her skin.


he was white and he used a picture of the dalai lama as his avatar
and he shouted in capital letters
YOU may not think YOU are racist
and then he explained to me
why i was
President Obama's policies have been PATHETICALLY conservative, so no, that's  not what your objection is
told me his  truth as he hid behind that avatar
and told me again i may not think i myself am racist
but that i would be wrong.

The only difference between the Republican Party and the Ku Klux Klan is the thread count of their sheets.
                                                        ~ from a friend's page on Facebook

he told me 

Go cry into your Egyptian cotton pillowcases.
and i'm not even republican.


across the street, byron leans on his car, smoking.
the humidity is almost heavy enough to keep the smoke from rising into the air,
but there is a breeze, and he leans into it, cigarette in hand, face to the sky.
i forget to notice the color of his skin.


for napowrimo, 2013
a poem a day for 30 days


untitled poetry

sometimes in the poemings i stomp my foot on certain words
they crack and squoosh and leave stains i can't wash away.
i've been barefoot for days
walking on truth and standing still when the bruises hurt.


for napowrimo, 2013.
a poem a day for 30 days.