Friday, August 19, 2016

Weekly Worded

Hold the Enlightenment

I ate the salad
without dressing,
swallowed the water

without ice,
refused the cake
frosted with chocolate,

then waved 
as Buddha entered the diner,
motioned him over to sit with me.

He noticed
but chose to focus  
on the waitress who served my meal.

She was thin in the right places
and round where it mattered.
She smiled

more sweetly than I’d ever seen,
as if enlightenment 
could replace a healthy diet.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Weekly Worded

All That’s Left

is chimney and hearth
heated by sun
glazed by moon
chilled by snow and ice
a rich diet of ore timber rock 

the old mill
gnawed to dust
every bit of structure
worn away
fallen into the creek’s gullet

except this pinnacle 
of rough hewn stone
like a lone tooth
with a cavity of soot
focus of its appetite 

Friday, August 5, 2016

Weekly Worded

                   Full Disclosure

The house is for sale.
Its roof and walls, 
windows and floors.
Each nail, each gap 
where a draft slips through.
The entire square footage
inside, and the universe 
unfolding around it.
Even the trees with 
or without leaves,
along with their roots
connecting earth to sky. 
Bugs, burrowing rodents, 
snakes and skunks.
Five shares of irrigation 
and a cloudburst of rain,
freezing hail and snow. 
The invasion of noxious weeds
along with the flowers.
The birds in the morning,
the spiders weaving their webs
on the satellite dish. 
The price includes everything,
more than I can mention,
             more than anyone cares to know. 

Friday, July 29, 2016

Weekly Worded

Mending Fence

Like a matchstick accordion 
cut from one sheet of folded paper,
the picket fence stretches across my yard,
illuminating the lawn with a line 
of faded white. I imagine how fresh paint  
might ignite the wood with phosphorescence.
Instead, it’s a railroad track rusted by rain,
a proud set of teeth stained by coffee. 
Who knows how long before it sags or falls.
Sometimes glancing out the window, I see 
the long scar from a suture on my hip
fading but impossible to forget. 

And if I begin, then what?
Scraping and sanding. 
Priming the wood 
followed by two coats. 
Days devoted to this fence. 
Days kneeling on the grass 
muttering curses and prayers. 
Untrustworthy gate, slumping hinges, clumsy latch. 
The aesthetic earth which the fence divides
looks pleasant to me on both sides.
No reason for it. 
Nothing to keep in or out.

It’s a Robert Frost project, something 
that wants a picket fence white, that’s all.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Weekly Worded

Cycle of Shadow

That shadow, like me, just a cloud 
trying to slip over Lizard Head Pass 
and ride the slide into Telluride. 

Minerals veined like bright bruises
trace a history’s unfortunate luck 
where others pummeled into rock, 

then slumped into the dark green trees.
See how those patches of snow, remnants  
from winter, still dapple the highest peaks? 

Once they were clouds too.
Now my backpack strains to be let down.  
I’ll rest and see if this cloud makes it. 

Friday, July 15, 2016

Weekly Worded

            Roadside Graves

Only memory remains here,
a painted cross, a spray of flowers
in case the soul is hitchhiking 

beside the road where it came 
hard against traffic merging 
from a different world, 

one where we have so little regulation,
where the rest stops are lightyears apart,
the journey encompassing everything.

Eventually we all lose control, 
dart across the line separating 
fact from imagination.

Let each fatality be marked 
like a pin in a map 
along the rugged terrain of a heart.  

Friday, July 8, 2016

Weekly Worded

         Holding Up the Sky

What the trees know
they will not say.
They keep it all inside,

their almanac of days
etched in a calligraphy
of whorls.