From Redirection, 2017.


Aluminum drainpipe
straight streak down the gray concrete facade
bisecting four rows of windows
Absolutely stunning
shining silver gold in the morning sun
Corrugated precious metal jewelry
for the office building
looking for a modest sort of chic
and surprised instead
with a bit of glamour




From Redirection, published in 2017.



The mirror over the mantel
the quiet gray room
the white arch into the dining room
the cream ceiling in the hall.
the walls
whose colors she had chosen
but had never gone so far
as to carry out the paint job.
The pale, aimless life she led –
Did she dare step
in front of this mirror?



From Redirection, published in 2017.


She lied
day and night
before breakfast
during lunch
between bites of beef stew at dinner
She lied
to confuse
for gain
for the pleasure of it
for the challenge of following the changes
of expression
that guided the route of her lies
She lied as easily as a minister prays in church
a thief steals from an unlocked house
a bird flies in a calm sky
She lied to
her boss her childhood friends the parking
garage attendant
her mother.
She lied around a wad of chewing gum
through a plate glass window
over the voices singing on an album of
Christmas carols.
She lied
until the only truth left was that
she lied.


You Knew

From Redirection, published in 2017.

You Knew

Your house for sale and you lived there only
one year
and you hated just hated the place
surprising yourself and your family
when you said we must get rid of this house
they protested in their various ways
you shouted them down
not understanding why
it mattered so much
but it did
it was essential
to get out of
this house.
It burned down
one week after the closing.


Put Pen to Paper Marathon 2019 Week 42

The Marathon journey is in its third year. Put Pen to Paper is the current incarnation.

This week the Marathon took place on October 16 and 17. I’m quite busy right now with art classes and projects I am working on at home for various art events, so this split time fits my schedule. On October 16, I worked on Little Vines at home.

On October 17, I spent time at the grocery store café. It was the morning after a stormy afternoon and night. The sky was washed clean.

As I approached the store

PO 10-17-19 (2)

you see no one sitting outside. It’s chilly and very windy today.

PO 10-17-19 (4)

I went inside and got set up at a table in the café area.

PO 10-17-19 (5)

At lunchtime, I went home after buying my lunch to eat at home.

Well, let’s get right to the writing.

People speak in poetry sometimes. Or at least I hear it that way. This poem came from an overheard conversation, quite lengthy, concerning job searches.

I applied for this job and that job
I have an interview next Tuesday
so I would be working first shift
oh I don’t know if I would want to
I might be too tired
and they want you to do a little of everything
and it’s an hour and then it more
and then you’re talking two or three hours
commuting a day and I just don’t know
I just don’t know
and you’re going to drive all the way down there
every day? I just don’t know.

I have a paint brochure with tiny samples of hundreds of paint colors. Sometimes I take a look at a page for a color inspiration and sometimes it’s the color name that attracts me. Today, because of the chilly weather and yesterday’s storm, I felt like a blue page. I saw the color name “ombre blue” but read it as “sombre blue” and converted it to American style “somber blue”.

PO 10-17-19 (6)

The color name gave me a vivid picture and feeling, not related to anything at all in my life. I don’t feel somber, blue, or that my surroundings are in an apocalyptic down-spiral. I do admit to having the little white house in mind (the one I’ve done so many artworks of, in different mediums, and I’ve explained I have no idea why this very ordinary house fascinates me):

Anyway, take this poem as pure imagination. I enjoyed painting the picture in my mind. It’s a shadorma chain.

somber blue
paint on a matte sky
in windows
blind-eyed cloudy and dim.
Small pale houses crouch

shoulders hunch
gray wind licks up leaves
Narrow street
cram-packed tight
forced friends uneasy neighbors
In bone-tired front yards

brittle stalks
dead flowers in pots
cracked ripples in a birdbath
a broken mirror

Let’s cheer up some. This shadorma is a slice of life portrait of one of the workers at the store this morning.

if you sing
I will not enjoy
how you sound
but I’ll love
your sheer outright go happy
head-back arms-raised style

Little Vines.

I can’t push that doorbell one more time
and that woman who is she
to stand behind the door refusing to answer?

a five-gallon smile
is all I have to offer
to stop the argument

it’s late
it’s ringing on me
bad memories sloshing in the glass

I’m just doing my job
painfully and slowly emphasis on pain and slow
working here is like sitting on a tack all day

I saw red
the glowing wires of my temper
a wave of heat in the room

it’s just a string
on a sunhat
flown off my head in the wind
like a loose kite

a ribbon-trimmed button band
on the cardigan sweater you made for me
for some reason that detail made me cry

answer this question so I’ll know:
did you borrow a bucket of dirt
and throw it on my reputation
or did you dig it up yourself

I fell overboard
a beach on a tiny island
took me in

out of a dozen
juggle three
seven minutes ready or not
put them on the plate and serve them

one hundred choices for saying good-bye:
I decide on
spice-infused crisp-crunch
not too sticky.

you bunch of pirates
keeping up with the times
3D printed plastic peg legs and digital robotic hands

a heart to heart talk soaked in syrup
veers piquant when words turn vinegary
the dish gets more interesting

acrobatic vines twist in trees
under a waxing gibbous moon
dragonflies hover in an ill-tempered cloud

tell me everything is fine
tell me
that it is all right to begin again

wild-eyed and exhausted
wrapped in tattered fuzz
like a dilapidated chicken

living moment to moment
low on supplemental molecules
the rectangle destabilized
shedding turquoise flakes in its last whirls


Thank you for reading!