Tuesday, July 27, 2010


This is not a children's poem.

Sometimes we are
busy as a beaver
sneaky as a weasel
we have nine lives
like a cat
or deeply love
and depend on
our best friend
the dog.

Sometimes we have
a memory
like an elephant's
or we're shy
as a mouse
or roar
like a lion
when we should
bleat like a lamb.

This is not a children's poem.

Sometimes we're cougars
and our claws come out.

We so often follow
like sheep or
are pushed along
like cattle or
are more stubborn
than a mule or
act like an ass.

And that brings me
to the equine paradox:
there are more horses' asses in the world
than horses.

This is not a children's poem.

What of the badger?
The badger badgers.
And usually it works
at least for him.

More persuasive
than the snake
was Eve
or was Adam just
more easily turned?
Unlike women
(according to many men's analogies)
she didn't have to badger
or bitch.

This is not a children's poem.

Sometimes tautology
is the best we can do.
We are what we are
and it is what it is.
We're human so
we're simply not a butterfly
but don't we see that
we are as stunning and
have a butterfly's fragility
that steals the breath?
That we can --
if we wish to --
stop crawling and
(not without a chrysalis phase)
discover flight.

Believe me.
This is not a children's poem.
Children have not yet forgotten how to fly.

Copyright 2010

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


Dancing on coals
as red as frostbite
will ignite
the forgotten lessons
that formed
like ice particles
in our warm breath
that day
when we sang
by the church
joining hands
with the dark
and the empty
as we hungered
for comfort and heat
yet fumbling
with numb fingers
traded our
worn scarves
to strangers
for gratitude.

Copyright 2010

Monday, July 19, 2010


I told her
it's trite to say
that her heart is pierced
even if it feels
as real as a paring knife
on a peach.

But when she lifted her shirt
and eagerly said
it won't hurt -- do it quickly --
I'll just look away --
jewels fell like those
that had colored her fingertip
when she signed
a childish lasting pact
-- with a serious look --
then mingled her life with
that of her best friend.

It was through
in an instant
followed by
a captive ring
with a crimson droplet gem
a prism
reflecting the truth
of an eternal metaphor.

And she smiled with defiance.

Copyright 2010

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Unshu Mikan

Oranges under my skin
beg to be peeled
until I trickle
over your fingertips,
my pulp under your nails.

Better to juice me
than slice me in quarters,
although you already have me.

I don't mind being squeezed
until trust is sweet on your lips.

Did you know that satsuma
-- unshu mikan --
is a mutant from Japan?

It means honey citrus.
Tart and sugary, like me.

Copyright July 2010