Palm Reader

A fortune teller once prophesied that
my greatest love would arrive
in my later years, but

so far love has stayed away from me
sometimes as far as boxed ashes
more often (just) other arms

Sometimes it stays so far away that
I will believe anyone who gently
holds my palm in theirs

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Birding

A semi-legitimate concern upon
taking up the hobby of birding

is that I have waited too long
and as a result lack ample time

to learn who is who among birds
(there are many categories and

this alone is plenty to remember).
But, what does time have to do

with how we measure what it
might be worth to love something?

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Picking Oranges

How to be honest and dishonest:

He asks where I have been
I respond, “picking oranges”

I know it is not what he meant, and
he knows I have not been picking oranges
in my backyard for three weeks

I stand at the fruit bowl
convinced it is not quite a lie

(Begun in 2019 as an essay; finished July 22, 2020)

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Spilled Coffee

Last week I made coffee
but forgot to put the pot
under the machine, and
walked away as it brewed
across my stove burners

I’ll never be a good woman
if measuring myself the way
he did, in a world where I’d
not known my kitchen and
my hemline was too short

Not often I face the damage
of the messages in which I
wade, nor pull them from
my own thoughts; I clean the
spill as if solving a problem


(November 16, 2019)

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