Friday, July 3, 2015

Weekly Worded

       An Older Truth

I cut the plum tree down today.
No lesson here. No lie.
I cut the plum tree down today
because it died.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Weekly Worded

        Time Was

I could sleep on the ground,
a sheet of plastic my only protection
against the damp earth.

If it rained, I tugged my blanket
over my head and dreamt
a full moon into being,

fireflies like falling stars
penetrating the deep woods
until they covered me

and I drifted to the Milky Way,
so far away from myself
only sunlight could recapture my body.

Time was the animals approached
while I slept and counted my toes.
I could walk ten miles

on my first wind,
hit a fence post every time
with a perfect stone.

These days at my comfortable desk
my fingers shadow that life.
Time was I had no time for remembering.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Weekly Worded

                                            (watercolor 7"x 10") P. Smith
    
     Stocking the Universe

The sky turns a brighter gray, clouds
slip like light from under a closed door.
In less than an hour the day will be spent.

All the puddles and wet leaves
will turn silver if the moon breaks through.
I am hoping for moonlight.

I am lugging the planets in plastic grocery sacks
up a long flight of stairs.
At the top a lock must be undone,

a knob twisted, a switch
toggled by a clever elbow.
So much I carry counterbalanced

by the so much I need.
In sorting it all away, a scoop of ice cream
cradled in a freezer-burned bowl

skids to the back of the bin.
Covered with hoarfrost, it shimmers

like haze off a distant star.



Friday, June 12, 2015

Weekly Worded


       The Road to Shonto

A swale of soft red sand
undulates like a snake
between outcroppings of coal
chattering against the chassis
of my truck as I checkerboard
across the Navajo nation.

It's raining and I’m sluicing
on the surface of a semi-fluid sea bed.
When the rain stops mud coats
the sides of my pickup like paint.
Red paint. Red earth.
And still no Shonto.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Weekly Worded

       Allure

I’m attracted to the flash, the color
glittering as if the stars have fallen to earth.
I’m attracted to the silver
shining wet like mercury spilled
from a broken thermometer.
All that dangle turning heads,
and I’m hooked before she ever gets out the door.
I’m attracted to any movement,
how the air drips as it undulates,
any twist, tug, like instinct itself
intent on getting away.
I’m attracted to the tiny swivel
that keeps it all aligned,
the way three barbs draw the eye
even where I know there’s danger.
I’m attracted to the narrow thread
that originates from someplace else, the line
attached to every part of me
like a marionette
performing at safe distance.
And I’m aware, of course, how all this shimmer
begins with a stab of pain, a tiny spur
piercing the skin that tugs
and tears and swells for years
beyond the instant I’m first attracted.
The way I dance, always inspired
by the way she dances.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Weekly Worded

        Still Waiting

  “Your opinion is valuable, please wait for the next available operator.”
     ...Some people call me the space cowboy, yeah.  Some call me the gangster of...
  “Your opinion is valuable, please wait for the next available operator.”  
     ...call me Maurice, ‘cause I speak of the pompitus of love...

  “Thank you for waiting. My name is Maurice, how may I assist you?”
  “Maurice? Really? I can’t believe it’s finally you.”
  “I’m sorry, do I know you?”
  “It’s me, Lovey-Dovey, your biggest fan since 1973.”
  “That’s impossible, I’ve only worked here for six months.”
  “Ah, you’re too modest.”
  “Is there something I can help you with?”
  “Yeah, what exactly is a pompitus of love?”
  “I’m not sure I know what you’re talking about.”
  “In the song, right before you start going on about my peaches.”
  “Your peaches?”
  “Oh, don’t pretend you haven’t noticed them.”
  “I apologize if I’ve given you the wrong impression about our services here at Hyper-Tech International.”
  “You’re still doin’ me wrong.”
  “I’m sorry, is this a hardware or software problem?”
  “It depends how badly you want to shake my tree.”   
  “I do have other customers waiting.”
  “Other fans?”

  “Thank you for calling Hyper-Tech International.  All our operators are currently helping other customers, but your opinion is valuable, please wait for the next available
operator.”

    ...You're the cutest thing I ever did see...

Friday, May 22, 2015

Weekly Worded

       Witching

is the process of searching for and locating
the lost, holding a twig
that dips and twitches as it points
to its mysterious pleasure.
And I’ll admit, I’ve tried.
Picked up a forked stick,
moved slowly about the yard,
but all I found was the root of a tree
where the stick probably came from.
I suspected if I kept it up
I’d find my own grave
so I threw the stick into the bushes
and went about my life in the usual way,
misplacing things and finding them again
when I wasn’t paying attention.