Swell

From Enough for a Book, published in 2016.

Swell

Yellowhammer
traveler in yellow pants
standing in the aisle on the train
taking a seat wherever one opens up.
Sociable fellow
picks up a group of guys
and they are playing cards
passing around a bag of chips
and singing out well-worn stories
before you know it.

Paperdolls #2 10-13-14 small

Paper dolls, 2014.

 

 

 

Another Day, Another Enemy

From Generous With the Details, 2017.

Another Day, Another Enemy

You have
cut your fingers
many times
chopping carrots
chopping beets
slicing apples. There is no reason
the onion
you are cutting up
right now
for stew
won’t send the knife into your finger
but you may be able to divert its attention
if you move slowly
carefully
and don’t look it in the eye.

11/16/16

Left Hand small

“Left Hand” – collage, 2006 (?)

Lottery

Lottery

The class watched the face of the professor
with some apprehension
as he was known to be
aggressive in his insistence
on class participation. A favorite pose he struck
once a class period
without fail
One foot on a chair
a hand cupped to his ear
as he listened for signs of life
from the class. An expression of anticipation
like that now passing across his face
was not good news
to those who had not prepared for the lesson
or who
to put it in plain words
had prepared but without being able to catch hold
of much understanding of it
if any. The professor shifted his stance.
The class drew in its collective breath.
The professor’s feet shuffled
but settled in the same plane.
As one the class took up pens
ready to note down
if necessary
every word said
as long as they did not have to say it.

11/18/16

Card project black kings 2-18

Black Kings, Playing Card Project 2018, Claudia McGill/Sharon Mann – work in process

My Responsibility, My Weakness, My Error

From Generous With the Details, 2017.

My Responsibility, My Weakness, My Error

I have to confess that
I misjudged the weight of the grocery bag
and so I didn’t anticipate
the handle pulling off it
the food and
especially that nice bunch of flowers
you tossed in at the last moment
such a nice impulse
but now
smashed flat under the canned goods
Lying on the sidewalk
where they fell when you grabbed the bag
by one handle
me not having warned you
it might be too heavy for that.
It’s my fault. I’m sorry.
Especially about the flowers.

11/18/16

Saturday Flower small

“Saturday Flowers”, collage, 2007.

Same Neighborhood, Different Street

From the poetry collection published in 2017, Generous With the Details.

Same Neighborhood, Different Street

So I left the salon
patting my hair
Just cut and in a style
I think suits me so I feel
such an upswing of energy
that I walk a lot faster than
I do when I’ve just departed from
the dentist’s office.

11/17/16

 — as a note, my hair salon and dentist’s office are a couple of doors  from each other – hence the title of this poem…

Teeth Grinding

“Teeth Grinding” collage/acrylics mail art postcard

The Memory of What Was Envisioned

From the collection Generous With the Details, 2017.

The Memory of What Was Envisioned

The expensive towels
shrunken
and the bindings
slowly detaching themselves
more and more with each wash.
Their sad decline made worse
by the memory
of anticipated long-term luxury
they excited
when they were bought new
white and elegant
just two years ago. Now they are
barely achieving
run-of-the-mill status
never contenders
for a nice toweling-off
after a bath with fancy soap.
A disappointment. Thrift
and secret hopes
are all that keep them
in the linen closet.

11/17/16

Looks like a bath but it's a ceiling 8-13 small

Mail art postcard, 2013.

Fault

From Generous With the Details, published in 2017.

Fault

Do cast your thoughts back and remember
that curious little incident occurring last year
about this same time
maybe a month earlier
than now
Consider whether
the literature has covered it
meaning
spelling out the possibility of an encore
in full. Then
make your decision. I’ll wait.

11/18/16

 

It's Your Fault small

Mail art postcard, 2012.

Panic Attack

Panic Attack

The bus pulled up.
Seven people got off.
Eleven got on.
I was one of the eleven.
At the next stop
two off
one on.
I have a lot on my mind.
I would prefer to think of things other than what I’ve been thinking about.
Two on
Two off.
Five standing in the aisle.
It is rain. It is gray midsummer day.
It is hot sauna inside this bus
It is smell of wet clothing.
The roof of the bus presses down on me
All these other people
are taking the air that I need
to breathe.
I get off the bus
I am one among three
gulping the diesel fumes
as the bus moves off.

9/8/16

Businessman

“Businessman”  –  Collage/Acrylics, 2006

Shadorma 46-49

The poems were written for the artwork you see and were published in Pink Chalk, 2018.

46.
Loud shout voice
Semaphoring arms
For Pete’s sake
look at me
You! Hey over there hey you!
Look out for the bus!
5/31/18

Shadorma 46 5-18 image010

47.
Store window.
Aloof mannequin.
Persuasive.
How I look
you could look. I’m telling you.
Buy this dress. Buy it.
5/31/18

Shadorma 47 5-18 image001

48.
Cut it out
this stupid nonsense
or I walk
down the street
get on a bus out of town
save my sanity.
5/31/18

Shadorma 48 5-18 image009

49.
Once again
I pass up the chance.
Hesitate.
Vacillate.
Being someone who hangs back –
That’s what I’m good at.
5/31/18

Shadorma 49 5-18 image002

Haiku Group House Painters

From Generous With the Details, collection published 2017.

Haiku Group House Painters

i.
The paint rollers hiss
white strokes across the ceiling
Fresh, right from the can

ii.
The painters have set
a rhythm of pure white strokes
to radio songs

iii.
The painters apply
the white paint while the cat cries
at the basement door

iv.
The painters shouting
above radio music
discussing haircuts

v.
Home disassembled.
Furniture covered. Walls bare.
Painters here today.

vi.
The bucket of paint
divided into brushloads
regroups on the wall

vii.
The frayed walls need paint
to make amends for aging.
Brush on a thick coat.

6/9/16

Postcard house in the fields 3-18 small

Mail art postcard, 2018.