The Year We Mapped Pluto

We’ve been letting go
of anticipation for years
of what it means to stare skyward
while rockets burst in snow-glare
hands shoved into pockets for warmth
unclenching dreams. Our less-than
light-speed age makes only a step
from year’s end to year’s end
a stride across continents, oceans
black-cold space. We forget
shadow patterns of mountains/valleys
these daily frettings of snow and ice
even triumphs receding in photo-collage
even losses losing focus, gray

October, 2015 marked two years that I’ve been sharing my work through this blog. I am more than grateful for all of you who have visited, read, commented, and encouraged. Thank you, and Happy New Year!

Almost Winter Dreams

not the cat, not
the glasses, only
my heart begging
another whiff of roses
crushed untasted
unsung under

broken night
flight of forgotten words
birds faltering, slow
freighted with fear
here comes their cry
why do I wake
ache for dreams unspoken
broken night

Playing with two prompts today. First part inspired by Quickly, second part inspired by Jane’s circular poetry.


What town is this we travel to?
And what will we eat,
how will we live?
Is it even the same sky?

And what will we eat
If we don’t know the words?
Is it even the same sky
touching trees, endless deep?

If we don’t know the words
how will we sing our dreams
touching trees, endless deep?
Will our neighbors speak us welcome?

How will we sing our dreams
in this language hard and new?
Will our neighbors speak us welcome
and can we understand?

In this language hard and new
how will we live
and can we understand
what town this is we travel to?

Day 25 prompt for PAD Chapbook Challenge is “echo poem.” 


A long year of watching
strife. (Earth, ocean, sun
sky, the very air above
suffers.) So this means—?
Come. Could we love?
Breathe peace song
in every language?

I was feeling pretty blank this morning, so I pulled out my mystical Magnetic Poetry set. Here’s what I found in the words. PAD Chapbook Challenge Day 18 prompt is “an idea poem.”

Another Miranda

How can I fathom this spectral procession?
Shall I rejoice that you drape sea-nymphs
with pearls, weave some glowing sea-change
to make courtiers of naught but magicked bones
fleshed, bedecked with rich coral and plumes,
your yearning after flowers? When the vision
doth fade, do we not suffer, being yet more alone?

O strange, that I should want to see beyond
this watery cave to the sunlit air whence came
this gold, these chests, these spars;
to crave speech of other, real woman or man
to see beyond this blackness, stars?

Having fun with Jane Dougherty’s invitation to imagine a story for this painting by Ilya Repin. I couldn’t resist sprinkling in some Shakespeare.

Of “those long childhood hours when you were so afraid”

this cloud-built summer storm—
we watch, insulated from all
youth’s electricity of wonder
and fear, saying it can’t hurt
us, can’t come in; backed
by scientific assurance
of two-score rock-solid years
unmovable, stony to the core

and is it good that we outgrew
that fear, traded it for what
endless repetition of even sunlit
days, ducks pond-gliding

(from that storm-dream of sword
and flame-leaping I wake
happy as if I’d been reading:
comfort for a workaday
monday morn)

Title from Stephen Mitchell’s translation of Rilke’s “Vor dem Sommerregen” (“Before Summer Rain”).


To find the poet’s place, exit
concrete boulevard, travel mind-
star miles to a green hill overhanging
ocean (or a lake or merely more fields
of sheep and yesterday’s sum of time—
summer mist-cold and sheltered
by silence, silvered neighbors just there
if you need them, trees turned
by storm-wind, insect hum high
brook-chatter, the night-limned runner
far ahead, speeding path
to stone-walled moss-field
guarding or mourning
or both)
hide hollow below castle walls
note-soaring above modern city:
this mix of yes and no
push and pull and aching
the shadow of tomorrow
spilled in water
on upturned palms, pleading