Saturday, April 30, 2011

April Drought

No April showers this year.
Ground forgets the meaning of rain.
No April showers, hope for
May flowers withers in sun.
But wait. I hear thunder.

Friday, April 29, 2011


I grew up believing
words were magic.
I could paint any scene,
convey any idea,
share any feeling
ase any pain
if I could just
find the right words.
Now I know that isn't so.
Language ia impresise,
arbitrary, and abstract.
No matter how hard I try,
you may not understand me.
I can hurt you with my words
when my intentions are kind.
Now I know words are not magic.
Worda are metely tools, powerful
tools. I can practice using
them with increasing skill,
but if there is in any magic,
it is not in the words but
in the benefit of doubt you
give me when you listen.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Poet's Choice

Without inspiration,
ordinary poetry.
Without discipline,
no poetry.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

In hope of hope

Stagnant afternoon
air, thoughts hang heavy
inspiration slows
doom looms invisible.
Best I can do is open
window. Perhaps hope
will blow in by dark.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


Follow the leader
scares me.
Follow my heart
confuses me.
Follow my mind
chills me.
Stay in the moment
calms me.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Free Fall

Days fall by like wild red leaves,
faster than morning, faster than dying.
Days fall by like spring rain,
softer than secrets, softer than tears.
Days fall by like fading light
after days fall by, what secrets night?

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Prayer at the end of Passover

I go through the motions
to lighten my load, my mood.
I say the prayers,
light the candles,
and still my feet hit heavy,
each right step an effort.
I wish for a dancing spirit,
easy happiness, free song.
I remember that the will
to continue the effort
is sufficient, dayenu, enough.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Ten messages for ten bottles

If not now, when?
Show up.
Pay attention.
If you don't know, ask.
If you mess up, fix it.
Real is better than perfect.
Life is hard and life is good.
Love not ego.
If all else fails, be kind.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Passover Paradox

with freedom, responsibility.
with responsibility, opportunity.
with opportunity, choice.
with choice, conscience.
with responsibility, freedom.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Beyond Second Thoughts

First thought: I want, I need, I feel....
Second thought: Nobody gets by with treating me like that....
Third thought: I should, she should, I shouldn't, he shouldn't....
Fourth thought: Time to breathe and consider again.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Crying in the Night

No matter how much wisdom, knowledge, security,
No matter how many friends, children, students,
No matter how much love, encouragement, connection,
Crying in the night still feels like crying in the night.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tens challenge (ten lines, ten syllables each line)


Pay attention. Attend to my message.
I am your heart, banging out your true song.
I am your mind, churning out your questions.
Pay attention. Attend to my message.
I am your soul, bearing truth from far stars.
I am your body, rooted deep in earth.
Pay attention. Attend to my message.
I am your death, dancing closer each day.
I am your life, offering this moment.
Pay attention. Attend to my message.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Rose gold

The moon rose gold over the Gulf.
Gold exchanged bridges gulfs.
Golden eyes of wolf haunt me.
Golden slippers dance in dreams
of my mother, golden haired princess.
Old friends are counted golden.
Silver threads among the gold will come.
I will always remember, the moon rose gold.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Portrait of Mary with her Dogs

She counts her beloved's pills
into the pill box precisely,
sighs, sets pill box on counter,
lifts her eyes and sees the dogs,
tiny, black and white, awake on couch.
She crosses the room in a bound,
light on feet, eyes suddenly laughing,
She drops to her knees and croons
to the dogs, voice rises and falls,
sounds all of sixteen, hands lightly
carress, weariness retreats as
the love of two little dogs refreshes.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Bad Boy Blues(based on seeing the musical Carousel with 14 year old KK)

What's the deal with
good girls falling
for bad boys,
taking the blows,
hiding our tears,
waiting all night,
waiting for years,
for the 3 AM
phone call that
he crashed the bike,
got busted,
fathered someone
else's baby?

What's the deal
with boosting
his ego, covering
for his mistakes,
bailing him out,
nursing, supporting?
Do we need him weak
so we can feel strong?
Can we only be right
if he does wrong?
What's the deal with
good girls falling
for bad boys?

Friday, April 15, 2011

First Grandchild

You were born
before I was ready,
I'd just given up
fantasy of being
mother again.
Grandmother came early.

You have my hair,
my shyness, a song
in your body I recognise.
You almost died,
three days and three years old.
I almost died your first winter,
had gall bladder surgery the
day your appendix came out.
Your life force and mine
seem to entertwine.
You remind me, life is temporary,
fragile, precious.

You will leave home
before I am ready.
We take dance class together,
laugh late in your little house,
knit scarves, unravel boy trouble.
Grandmother came just in time.

Thursday, April 14, 2011


I do my laundry when
the house sleeps.
Laundry takes me back.
I stand barefoot in garage
sort dark from light,
remember standing
in the same spot
thirty five years ago,
so proud of new
washing machine
in new house
to wash clothes
for new baby for
new life which continues
to unfold day by day.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


Over heads of children
you look straight
into my eyes,
beam complete history
of twenty years
confirm pain and joy
mirror back
my life.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Maybe there is no God.
Maybe it's too late
to save the earth,
too late to save each other.
Maybe hope is a joke
and love an illusion.
I won't vote for maybe.

Monday, April 11, 2011

40 line sentence challenge -Don't Want

I don't want
to want
people I love
to act
how I want
them to act,
to choose
what I want
them to choose,
to think
What I think
they should think
to feel
what I feel
they should feel,
to live
where I think
they should live,
to eat what
I choose them
to eat
to weigh
what I think
they shold weigh,
to like
what I'd like
them to like,
to fight
when I need
them to fight,
to love
as I wish
them to love,
to need what I
need them
to need,
to be who
I decide
they should be,
but sometimes I do.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Never Again

Never again
will I have yesterday.
Never again
will I know exactly
what I know this moment.
Never again
will I have the chances
that this instant unfolds.

Saturday, April 9, 2011


Waxing crescent moon
floats like fat boat
toward western harbor.
Children sleep.
I knit another row,
draw tub for bath,
hope for tomorrow.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Celebration of Sorrow

Pain of loss
is shadow of love.
Deserves equal celebration.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Blessing for An Ordinary Day

Let me savor this day
bills, pills, homework,
dirty dishes, deadlines.
Let me savor each breath
Let me stay kind, patient.
Come death, I will wish
for one more ordinary day.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Don't Fix Anything, Abide

Sit with me in the dark
Don't reach for the switch.
Leave your flashlight in your pocket.
Sit with me in the storm.
Let my tears flood us both.
Don't hand me a tissue.
Things are as bad as they are.
Don't tell me they aren't.
Don't fix anything. Abide.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Awful Optimism (from an oxymoron prompt)

Awful optimism
insists I put
foot after foot
in deepest despair.
Somewhere light will
play on the water.
I can't quit, must
persevere to see it.
Tough task master,
life saver.
Awful optimism.

Monday, April 4, 2011

I Will Die

I will die
when and where
and how I die.
No guarantees.
No deals to cut.
I will focus
on how I live.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Easy for me to think
I've lived long enough,
no tragedy if I die now.
No tragedy but I would
leave work unfinished,
people with holes in
routines,pattern incomplete.
Self care still matters.
I am reminded. Work to do yet.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Postcard from 60

Dreaded destination
proves minor milestone.
I thought old feel real.
I'm just myself with
aching knee, fewer days left,
more stories to tell.
Stigma of sixty is overrated.

Friday, April 1, 2011

April Fool

I wake to
one more April.
Fool again for
flowers, showers,
renewal of hope.