La Nouveauté

For something new
for an Eastern sound
for a tree that holds its leaves
for my body to conquer its swelling belly

For my mind to conquer itself
for my hands to find new notes
for flowers of unrecognizable fragrance
unfolding before me in a meadow unexpected

For a byway, for a conversation,
for a person I also did not expect
for time to go backwards, or
for it to leap to this day next year and there we are

For animals to speak and
for ghosts to appear and to
finally catch spirits moving objects, or just
for one full day of names I have never said aloud

For those names to not recognize me
for anonymously wandering a grocery store
for lack of how have you beens and instead
new names attached to canvasses who I have not met

(June 13, 2019)

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Another Fine Day

I dreamed of horses again,
my mare and her baby
and I, combing out her
chestnut forelock as she
lifted her head and the
wind caught her mane
in a way I thought (in my
dream) how beautiful.

When I awoke I counted
how old she would be if
the riding accident had not
happened. I still see an
animal with a large hole
in its side, letting me lead
her by leather bridle away
from pavement to grass
where we shot her, many
people gathered around.

I am seated on the back of an
ambulance when comes the
shot. Afterward, I kneel at
her shoulder not far from
the foot-wide gaping hole
from where intestines had
spilled ten hands in length
onto the pavement after I
rode into a pole sticking
three feet above ground.

That type of mourning,
it does not matter who sees;
they should, as a form of
penance. We removed her
English tack and men took
her away on a truck bed.
Born St. Patrick’s Day, she
would be twenty-six now.

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An Odd Way to Sleep

I said to the closed-eyed dog lying in the middle of the floor like a Sphinx:

That seems like an odd way to sleep;
it looks more like waiting.


But as a dog he will do what he wants, and it remains unconfirmed what and if they think – so maybe he is in fact sleeping and waiting, one in the same. What do we know?

May 30, 2019

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Goodnight, Norman

This week I reverted to killing bugs again – the tiny beetles that search my kitchen sink basin when the lights have gone out. I go in for a glass of water and switch on the light and before they scurry off have often stamped them out with a paper towel under my thumb.

It began this way (killing everything in sight), then it was not (feeling bad about killing), and only recently have I begun to murder them again, sometimes two or three at a time but they are bugs and one soul is no more important than the next, says my tired mind that has been working too-long days and my strained body worn out mostly because the mind is.

Norman, I named them. Hi Norman, I would say walking into the kitchen and I would let he-she do what beetlebugs are going to do which is be harmless. And I felt joy that I had named them and thought Norman was a likeable kind of character the way some names tell you all about a person before you’ve gotten to know them (of course there can always be surprises).

Other items in and around my home are: Vivienne (the dinosaur balloon now deflated since my birthday), Sheldon P. Strawberry (P stands for Percival), Cornelius the Jelly Donut Pillow, and Horace Alfred the owl-made-of-bird-seed who has two first names and whose apricot eyes attracted a trail of ants that I also wanted to kill. There might be a few others, but only so many details can fit in a brain at one time although I do think mine has extra room compared to standard brains which are often attached to people with standard names like Courtney and Bob and Mike (never more than two syllables, these types).

On the day I named the kitchen bugs Norman (earlier this year) I also stopped smushing them because once something has a name it has a personality and a soul and before you know it simple bug extermination feels more like murdering a roommate, albeit one(s) who lives only in your kitchen sink basin.

Hi Norman! – a good way to start the day

Goodnight Norman! – a good way to end it

But this week I began killing Norman(s) again and have two theories why:

1. I am tired and overwhelmed and someone has to pay for it.

2. Norman has multiplied and I must draw the line somewhere.

May 2019

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Silent Song

If I hope for you to understand what
kind of human is inside this creature
of the animal kingdom who is still
evolving: I advise you to undetectedly
tiptoe up as I sit in front of the piano
(jesus whatever you do, do not speak,
but listen best you can) and when I am
done leave before I become uneasy
to find I’ve shown myself so honestly.

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