Monthly Archives: February 2014

Swimming From Cuba

Immersed in the ocean
stinging jellyfish, sharks,

everything is a predator
holding its ground,

until a bipedal African great ape
swims by making furrows in the sea.

Boat lights bob in the distance,
the white menace circles.

A little bubble that says I’m ok
when all of nature begs to differ.

The Poetry of Bees

When a loved one departs
I keep a petroglyph.

Like the poetry of bees,
these incisions of memory

post an owl guard
over my own garden of stones.

Hood River

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Columns of basalt by the steel river.
The afternoon light is bleach.
Piled snow like dirty diamonds.

Latino boys wearing Chucks laughing about nothing
where the Paiutes picked huckleberries,
where the salmon made a footbridge
in the spindly river.

Where the afternoons
go sideways.

A Man For Our Season

This cynical age!

It is like eating a bowl
of chain stew each day.

But then there is Mandela.

Fear No Poetry

Don’t be afraid of how I sound, the ancient chants are here inside the poems.

–Yeats on reading his poems aloud

A Catskill Eagle in the Soul

There is a wisdom that is woe; but there is a woe that is madness. And there is a Catskill eagle in some souls that can alike dive down into the blackest gorges, and soar out of them again and become invisible in the sunny spaces.

–Herman Melville, Moby Dick

A Writer’s Job

“Each word has an interior life. Your job is to caretake the interior life of words and language through your selection and arrangement of them in stories.”

–a Japanese storyteller