Winter Bared Trees

nude, winter bare trees,
bole darkened with damp,
sinuous limbs silvery in sunlight
arch, twist in the chill air
twig fingers ache to cradle doming blue.

structure disrobed for all eyes to devour,
some frowzy haired maidens, frizzled with tiny sprigs,
others with massive trunks unfurling, stately, sedate,
branches stretching, streaming into sky,
languorous naked ladies, bare breasted and serene.


winter, 2015

Food Fight

Your face is red as you scream,
“You are just sooo stupid!”
I push my fingers in my ears
and yell, “Arrogant Bloodsucker!”

The mamas on the porch nod and aver,
“I tol’ you, I tol’ you, none of ’em any good.”
The gardener squints through the salty sweat burning his eyes
and wonders if he can make it at home.

The street vendor thumbs his phone, texts,
“Hurry, there’s a crowd at 5th and Main.”
The reporter smirks, “Yes! This’ll get ratings,” and
calls for the van with the live broadcast crew.

If only
this were a middle school food fight,
and not
political America, 2016.




November 23, 2016

Maintenance Man

I saw him press a bar with six huge weights,
run eight sets of stairs, chin twenty times,
his body taut, glistening ebony.

Soon he sauntered out, head down,
dark eyes in white orbs obscured by
army drab slouch cap with side vents,

arms and legs flapping loose,
four single bananas
flopping in a gray maintenance uniform.

I wonder if the feet who tap his wet, clean floors
know the muscles pushing the mop and
emptying out their trash.

2014 -2015
rev 11/16


I grieve your pain
when clouds are
grey boulders
that press you into the earth,

but in your ache
your words birth
a marrow deep
holy adoration

of him whose agony,
beauty, and joy
none fathom.


for Danny Miller on Wordfields
January, 2014

The Hand

Good mornin, Jimmy.
Come on in.
Have a seat.
“Naw, I’ll wait out here.”

Good mornin, Jimmy.
It’s chilly.
Come on in.
Have a cup of coffee.
The cane bottomed chair scrapes on the old pine floor.

Good mornin, Jimmy
Come on in.
Plates of biscuit, bacon, eggs, and grits
plunk down on the chipped white enamel table.
His spoon dings on the cup rim,
his knife and fork clinks and clatters on
jelly jars and faded china as
plans for the day compose the lyrics
to the song of the morning.

July 8, 2015

Tyrant Training 101

“Sweetheart, which do you want?”
mom bows towards the shopping cart,
waves boxes of Corn Flakes and Cherrios.

“Dis,” chubby fingers clutch at
Fruit Loops on the store shelf.

“But, Darling, these are better for you,”
she intones, wiggling the boxes.

“No!” spouts from the puffed lip,
pudgy palms shove the boxes.
“Fwoot Woops, Mommy!”

The Fwoot Woops drop into the basket,
spoils of war.

July, 2015


The morning, cold, black,
and wet with silver tears.
The flag, red, white and blue,
inside, furled, warm and dry
like I wish our guys were.

But they are on mission,
being men,
so I can sit safe, warm, and dry,
being home,
something to fight for.


Happy Birthday, USMC
November 10, 2015