“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


he was thinking 3 dimensionally

we were grocery shopping,
or really he was,
before i drove him home to his piece-of-shit shack,
and he was standing in front of all the cheeses,
standing befuddled, lost in space,
looking for the one he likes the best,
and i'll be honest, i wanted him gone,
(let's get this done and you home,
i love you but you're driving me crazy, crazy)
 so i asked what he was looking for,
there in the confusion of his eyes,
and he said a half moon cheese,
and he said i can't find it.

so i looked
and i saw crescent moons
and i saw full moons,
and then finally, there,
just where the display turned an oval corner,
a half moon.
this? i said, holding it up,
colby?, i said,
cause you know, what do i know?
and no, he said, a half moon,
like a ball, cut in half.

he could see the dark side of that moon when i could not,
and i understood for a moment the tower of babel.


poem #3, for napowrimo
and for my brother
and for our inability to communicate.


where we all fall off

we go cautious near the place where the fence stops and life begins;
one foot into the nothingness, followed by the other, followed by a gasp of breath
surprised hands scrabbling i changed my mind into the dirt grasping at leaves
too late.
the fat lady sings her own song at the end.


we go three times across the street,
one for the sun, one for the moon, and once for good luck;
fallen petals spilled across the wet road,
to be circused away by bicycle tires,
flattened beneath the footsteps of tourists,
tasted by raindrunk birds flying from the edge of here and now to there and away.

we go two times against the night, one for you and once for me,
the sound of honey suckling,
the secret whisper swoosh of evening moonrise and breath of darkness falling,

we go one time, together, into the empty places, onto burnt ground,
where my hands speak a language known only to them and wait for answers,
where your birthday candles are all afire, still, unfilled wishes wisps of smoke.

the air smells of a sparrow's fear and leftover lightning no jar can contain.


for napowrimo.  30 days of poetry.
this is my second.


the boat will fall apart, no ifs, ands, or buts

all the wisteria is gone with the rain.  last week my view from the couch was lavender, this week it's green and fog, with the pink of azaleas peeping around the corners.  9 a.m. and silence.


i dreamed in layers, awoke in my dream to find myself still dreaming, dreaming of death and the colors of mourning and flowers pressed into caskets, tight against the dearly beloved, bright moments of red and heartbreak, soft focus.  i wore pale gray silk the color of this morning's sky, almost white, and was late to the funeral.

i pull yesterday's page from my calendar, and today's quote is by shunryu suzuki:
"life is like getting into a boat that's just about to sail out to sea and sink."

my first reaction is stillness.  i stand and stare at the words.  
and then i begin to laugh.
of course.  of course.
why would we think otherwise?

this blog is my boat, these words are my oars, and there's a storm in the distance that will take them all apart.  i will be fine.  if i can't find a piece of a word to hold me up, and in truth that's asking a lot of some vowels and consonants - not their job, after all - i will float on my back, face against the rain.  it won't last forever.  the boat may sink, but that has nothing to do with me.  i am free.  gone with the rain.


the fog has lifted and birds are singing.  the wind is up and today's rain promises to come.  i write about zen in a non-zen way.  in the distance, a train siren.  on the couch, the cat watches the day through the open door, and on the table, stolen azaleas.  breakfast, an english muffin with butter.  i will be late to work.



another conversation

we don't speak the same language, people tell me.

i beg to differ.
i know exactly what she's saying.



everyday sunday april

this week's flower is a dogwood blossom, six petaled instead of four, and it hangs a step outside my neighbor's front door. not unheard of, but rare, and a gift.  a miracle, he says.  cool, i say back.  i take a million pictures and photoshop just a bit. miracles don't need my help.


we had sunshine for days and conversations with neighbors, sitting under the spring skies, and once again i was reminded of why i stay where i stay.  we are caretakers, all of us.  a lawn mower breaks and one of the neighbors mows our lawn. the 4 year old next door chirps like a bird and insists we school him on the flowers and blooming trees and chooses which wisteria dangle he cannot live without, which tiny pink clover blossom.  we give him the last daffodil.  the woman who once lived across the street is in a plane crash, she and her boyfriend, his daughter and her boyfriend, and the news comes to us as we sit outside, from yet another neighbor.  the pilot's parents live across the street and katie's husband hurries home to stay with them until, and after, the news comes that, though injured, all are well.  we are caretakers, all of us.

today is rain and a sunday without tourists on the streets.  yesterday they posed in front of the wisteria and took pictures and oohed and ahhhed, and if the rain stops, they will do so today.  i watch the water tumble downhill into the creek and say my gratefuls for the day.



a bit of a poem and a bit of conversation

she say and then i say back
and then she again and then a pause
and then she again
and she again
and i answer and question
and then we wait
and begin again at the same time
this conversation that never sleeps.
the opening sentence years old, celebrating birthdays
minutes long
hours long
into the night the dark the hardness of life
into the day the rain the sun the heat the blooming flowers.

the seasons swirl around us.

she stay silent and so do i
and i stay more and hide inside
and hide inside some more;
this conversation that ain't about words
but about me in the doorway in bare feet and pink pajamas
and her in heels
and the minutes we stop smile sigh smirk.

you can see it, can't you?
a true conversation meandering through nights and days
and phone calls and moonlight and walking toward jupiter
and texts full of tears and hugs full of same
it ain't never gonna stop
never ever.
i promise cross my heart and all that stuff.


today's mixture of napowrimo and me.