Saturday, April 18, 2015

first kite

swirling storm gusts
and you race
between us
in your little rubber 
boots across the field
thin white line into the sky
crappy plastic kite
collapsing upon itself
with each blast of wind

but it flies and you cackle 
running wide loops 

above the thin flat bird
with the streaming blue tail
two hawks circle

above our laughter
but not our love

Friday, April 17, 2015

This Genocide Assignment

Professor Don,

said a note 
at the bottom 
of an essay

this genocide assignment  
haunted me

followed by a question:

did you give us this topic
just for a grade, 
or something more?

Beneath her A

I wrote:

something more,
young scholar 
something more

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Bear, Aware

they know not what they do
dump piles of tasty morsels 
perfectly fine food 
in barrels before breakfast

waste while we watch
wait, weary of the wind 
that bears their scent

their piles of hunger
draw us despite danger
anger at our instict 
to taste, not waste

and we will pay, because 
they know not what they do

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lincoln's Chair

Lincoln's Chair

the red on this chair
from a nation divided
contempt for change
shot from a derringer
a dagger slash
fear on the balcony
the stage set
acts upon acts
players and plays
crimson playbills
mutter "useless" last lines
and exit
stage left
empty as a blood
and brain stained chair

[Poem for April 15, and #15 for April --- 150 years and one day after the assassination of President Lincoln.]

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Old Dog's Turn

Lego, our fifteen year old friend

Old Dog's Turn

a stopwatch hand
the old dog moves
in a circle, claws clicking
turns again, again
we watch him spin

canine evolution or
trampling down invisible grass
on a wood floor

furry turntable
black and white wheel
breathing merry-go-round 

each revolution
one of his fifteen years
two seconds per rotation
paws ticking away
this time we all have left

Monday, April 13, 2015

Dear, Son --- about that animal...

Dear Son,

I'm sorry I didn't do more
but I didn't know it was so bad
let me try again

I'm sorry I didn't do anything
but there wasn't anything I could do
let me try again

I'm sorry I couldn't stop it
but they were so far away
let me try again

I'm sorry I didn't fight
but I was so busy
let me try again

I'm sorry I did nothing 
but I wasn't alone
let me try again

I'm sorry we did nothing
but we learned from our fathers 
let me try again

I'm sorry the _______ is gone
but I
let me try again

I'm sorry the ________ is _______
but we

I'm sorry 



[poem #13 for National Poetry Month. Sadly, on this day scientists declared the black Rhino extinct.] 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

All the Signs Say

all the words tell us, sell us
something is ahead, stop on red
here to be fed, already made your bed
where you will lie, this is how to die
fill up the sky, put them up high
light and bright, everything is right
left at the sign, everything will be fine
check worry at the door, hurry no more
heaven in a basket, chicken in a casket
billions served a day, billions to pay
signs how to play, billboards how to pray
no escape you'll find, unless you go blind 

(I snapped the photo of the McDonald's sign this Feb in Kodiak, AK.)