Friday, August 29, 2014

Weekly Worded

         The Landscaper’s Lament

All afternoon the deer bed down
in the willow thicket, invisible to me.

Long after I stretch out for the evening
they rise like herbivorous wraiths

snipping every bud off the rosebushes
with teeth groomed for pruning,

stripping bark from the youngest trees
until pith shines like the moon’s marrow.

If I pause at the bathroom window
silhouetted by the light, they are statues

sculpted on the lawn, or the shadows
of shadows congruous as the grass. 

In the morning I find their IOU,
a signature of hooves on soft earth. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Weekly Worded

           At the Un-Navajo National Monument

Betatakin, a Navajo word,
but in the glossary of time
it means 75 to 100 people
lived here, families
or clans, 135 rooms, most
the size of a closet, some
smaller, sealed, full of grain.
Soot thick on stone walls.
A kiva round as a jacuzzi
to soothe the ever-present
existential ache about a future. 
As caretakers the Navajo
invite us to look,
photograph, crush
the light into pixels.
365 thousand sunrises.
Wall-to-wall carpet of dust. 
A makeshift ladder 
leaning like a shadow
toward a door no larger
than a window.  A view
without an address.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Weekly Worded

      Reality Is Inside
           (In Memoriam)

It must have been quieter than usual
or noisier, depending on which
part of you was listening. 

Either way, you were alone
in that space called home, a full cast
of insecurities waiting for cues. 

On good days the commotion inside
must have sounded like applause
that turned into a furious scratching,

dozens of fingernails shredding
hundreds of scripts.  There.  Just enough
room to improvise, jokes

catching like barbs in the throat. 
So focused on what you'd say next,
we never heard how the air

from your lungs hissed
as it erased your tongue, your lips,
every part of you that we loved.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Weekly Worded


The forecasters say
there’s a chance of rain
so I sit on my porch,

watching a dark cloud
shape itself
into a promise.

It’s a long way off
and my glass
is only half full.