a rule poem

RULES

fear history
fear boats
fear tribes
fear isolated roads

fear freckles
fear sun
fear floppy hats
fear the battle won

fear infrastructure
fear trucks
fear robots
fear the machine that mucks

everything up. Fear stars
Fear light
Fear dark
Fear bumps in the night

Fear assurance
Fear calm
Fear fearlessness
Fear too much balm

Of dishwashers and water nymphs

Warranty

There are gremlins in the dishwasher
(or elves, possibly grumpkins)—
regardless

They are aggrieved
apparently they prefer Cascade Platinum
disdain Finish Orange so

they withheld heat
mucked up the circuitry
punched holes in the filter

The Sears guy says, “No, ma’am.
those Samsungs—read the reviews.”
“Or maybe gnomes,” I insist.

“Do you want the extended home plan or not,
ma’am? It would cover everything in your house
and drop your cost today to 80 bucks.”

“Does it cover Pixies? Fairies? Sprites?
Hobs and Gobs?
“Ma’am, I gotta truck fulla parts.

I don’t know nothin about no supernatural creatures.”
“Oh, sir! Thank you, yes. It could be a minor goddess,
a wicked water nymph.”

The repairman with his belt of tools and wifi-enabled tablet
looked into my soul, then glanced left, then right
and whispered, “My money’s on Aphrodite.”

‘Pass/Failed,’ a poem

Pass/Failed

 

Who decides
the grade drawn from life’s debris?

What highlights
(purely luck) get an A?

Are points
deducted when the creeks overflow?

Pictures don’t
do the scenery justice–earning a C
because the light wasn’t right.

We come
in second, a solid silver B.

In the
unusual seasons, when we gallop past the D-
straight on to failure in our big-girl boots.

Those are
the seconds of destiny we carry as ghost-friends
shadows from which we are never unsewn.

A soup poem

Basic Soup

 
Start at sunrise
in the CrockPot
soak up the patience of a day
let the butter
and garlic get
to know each other
get acquainted
with the holy mirepoix
add beans
Simon & Garfunkel spices
plus others. At sunset
turn the dial to Warm
Serve in darkness.

‘A Map for Samwell Tarley’

A Map for Samwell Tarley

 

The hills and rivers remain. That is all the map you need.

The scraps of lands where others have traveled ~ you will journey

Past all that. Bring your pen.

Roots will trip you

Ravens will fail you

You will mislay your bundle looking for light

Forward you face each long mile

When you can’t walk, crawl

When crawling fails, sit, not quite quiet

Fill in more of the map

 

 

‘Rainlessness’

Rainlessness
 

Drought is talented

chooses some streets, cedes others

 

The sky committee dithers over details

which house gets a proper rainbow

 

which zone deems dew

a deluge

 

Count each fleck of moisture

drop huddled to drop seated beside velvet drop

 

‘August’

August
 

The beautyberry bush blooms just as school
starts. The green berry cluster comes out

about the time the yellow school bus pulls up.
Summer’s green purples, like the bruise

on my middle-left toe, taped to its buddy.
Suddenly purple takes over my yard,

the neighbors’s yard, the doctor’s office,
the post office. Every where we are hurt

can’t hold back, can’t wait for fall.
Behold, our pain!

Berries unripened, astringent beauty
unharvested.

‘Revenge’

Revenge

is juvenile

sic ’em with a poem

get the last word

in rhyme, attempt ragtime

say it slant

leave love

‘Reinata Caridorada’

Reinata Caridorada

 

hot sunset steals the gay light

among once-wildflowers dead from drought

where oak and cedar meet — small birds

 
glean. We grab

phones, snap males sporting black eyeliner

females flashing off-the-shoulder wingbars.

 

A dozen endangered yellow faces

black throats white bellies

Warblers of charity

 

‘Crepe Myrtles’

Crepe Myrtles

 

The technology of these perennials astounds me,

accustomed to trees that never turn and grass that turns

too soon. My blooms lag behind

these sentinels of sidewalk.

If I could resist my mountain nature

I’d stand tall in the summer sun

croon hot pink.