Winter Wear

From the collection published in 2021, The Immediate and No Sooner.

Winter Wear

Skiing down mighty fast on the snowcap
let’s laugh a knit hat pompom and earflap
for a mountain? No, just the white giftwrap
on my present. Finesse that snowflake gap
Sweep and turn. Schuss the icy cold whitecap.

2/6/20
10-10-10-10-10/5

Very Cold Very Much Winter

From Clean Canvas, published in 2018.

Very Cold Very Much Winter
Iced-up electric wire
swings in the wind
coating cracks
breaks and falls
segments that lie quiet
undone
a broken line
punched in the snow.

Birds line the black cable
now clear
for feet that grip
backs against the wind
Snow falls
Wind blows.

3/8/18

Twenty-Four Hours

From the collection published in 2017, Refuge.

Twenty-Four Hours

The very slow glide morning into afternoon
the damp early hours dropping out of the way
for a humid sun
to take hold of the day and fade it
into the warm-for-this-time-of-year night settled outside
the window cracked open
the eyes closed in sleep.

2/23/17

Cold Weather Flirt

From Refuge, published in 2017.

Cold Weather Flirt


Grab your pink flip-flops.
Go trim your grass skirt.
If you’ve still got it,
your tropical shirt
fits the occasion
and swim fins won’t hurt.
Let’s capsize winter. Reverse it. Invert.
Pineapple upside-down cake for dessert.

1/19/17
10-10-10-10-10/5

Conversation Filler

From Rearrange, 2018.

Conversation Filler

Is it cold enough for you
yes, I feel quite satisfied
with the amount of cold
I hope I’m not taking some of yours
I don’t want to be greedy
Let me spread some of my harsh north wind
over you
so that we both will have plenty
Is it cold enough for you
Yes, I think it is. Thank you
for asking.

12/28/17

Salad Bar at the Grocery Store

From Rearrange, published in 2018.

Salad Bar at the Grocery Store

Plastic roof over the carrots
arugula and cress
pickled beets and wheatberry salad
sneeze proof and scratched up
you watch your hands through it
as they travel from
tofu slices
to hard-boiled eggs
you slide yourself along
pick pick pick with the tongs
feet shuffling miles below, unseen
your eyes scrutinizing the array
intent on the food. Excuse me excuse me
sidling around the barely-registered
except for when they get in your way
other people
with their other hands dipping forward
their other stop-and-go feet tracking the food
pick pick pinch quick pick
birds around the feeder
in winter

12/28/17

The Original Day

From the collection published in 2018, Rearrange.

The Original Day

Black trees
shiny dark wet
lines
edged white
after
the snow falling last night
Shimmer cold morning.
Pink gray mist sky.

Silver metal train
on the line
behind dark brick blocks of
apartment buildings
a hard yank
from its engine
smoothed-out into a slide
in and out of gaps in the row of buildings
horn blast polished hard.
Wake up
people in your tangled-up fleece blankets
Get up
get yourself on your feet
Begin yet again
Get yourself out into
this day

12/14/17

Living Room Drama

From Rearrange, 2018.

Living Room Drama

winter one day winter the next day
bleach dripped on the carpet
the baby had only dark thoughts
and would not stop crying
suggestible and easily swayed
as he is.
I sat down with a beer
wrote up a list of my symptoms
put my feet up
found a TV movie
got interested in the life of
a blond woman getting into a taxi
the baby did, too
things took on a new look
the blond woman went to the bad
there was some trouble with
empty bank accounts
last we saw of her
she was washing her hair
in a pink-and-black-tiled bathroom
Us, we’re fine
I painted my fingernails
the baby fell asleep.

10/27/17