speared and tiny

i’ve revolutionized my squishing method
i call out in the squash beds

where the day is already heating up even though
we met to begin at 8 instead of the usual 9
in regards to using the back of the garden clipboard
to press the bronze eggs against
with my finger

speared and tiny we call the pile of
speared and tiny garlic as we
work our way down the beds of the sandhill variety by
moving the impossibly dried/hard lookfar soil
with our digging forks
(by impossible i mean
the exclamation sound baigz gave when
he bent the metal
where the fork joins the handle
trying to lever the soil up
[it comes in chunks] with his body weight)
we should mark it
i say

sticking an orange flag in the ground
where last week we heard a squeak and thought
maybe dottie squashed a mouse
and where this week the squeak is still there
and dottie groans thinking he killed another mouse
but when i pull up the mulch
it is a frog
making small squeaks
holed up in the cool clay
how once dottie does his acceptance speech for
the zinnia award in the spiral we are weeding
the ridiculousness/hilarity is on from there
(difficult to retell but
somehow an exchange/association of rare/fabulous/weird/hilarious words
ensued including: churlish, tumescent, cantankerous
and the word rhombus became an insult)

beige/gray tiny (but very round) snake
shiny as it curves itself through
the growing cactus zinnias

like a double-angled snow plow
how i use my hands
to clear a way through the duckweed before me
as i swim into the newly sandy shore
raccoon (not adult, not baby)
in its black mask white stripes
scuttling along a branch and up the trunk
how i try to call it back out to say hi
because i am struck by seeing its face so clearly
(usually, it’s a blurry  hunched shape
bounding across a street in orange street light glow
as i approach on bike)
how the dust rising from the gravel road i run along
as a propane truck passes
soaks up the orange/gold/pink glow
of near-sunset light

hurling cabbage stems and base leaves
into the cart
and hauling their weight
across the yard
racing the hours of light left
to finish everything i intend to finish today
knowing i won’t but also knowing
i made significant progress
on this miraculously mosquito-less night
(one benefit of drought?)
i sit for at least a half hour
on the leopold bench
in the dark
moonstar curled and sometimes purring
sometimes sleeping and sometimes
resting her hed on my forearm
and watch the fireflies fill the
expanse of night fill in
with their blink/stutter/chorus of light

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i say of the sun

i took too much yesterday
i say of the sun when molly notes

my longsleeve button up coverage
daggers in my throat
baigz says

about the symptoms of his sickness
from his couch perch
looking worn
in the morning
the way the cone-shaped cabbages

(caraflex variety mostly) nestle
head by head into each other
as i place them in black crates
to become a total harvest of
approximately 160 pounds

rhada in her small pink crocs
because she is a small sized human
chasing ducklings around in the chicken yard
and how their soft snuffling and cooing-but-not-cooing/squeaking sounds
draw my attention

red earth’s land day gift i joke
about how many of us are covered in
red welty chigger bites
maybe we’ll see the bobcat i say
to cynthia as we ascend slater hill
popcorn bowl in one hand
blanket in another

how from our blanket perch
amongst the persimmon trees
we sky-watch and i note
the feathery clouds resembling
the feathery leaves
of what might be a locust tree
or something else completely
from the water world:
A mural by unknown artists is seen on an abandoned building that used to be a water pumphouse for water from the Jordan River, in the Jordan Valley, Israel – voice of america, day in photos 

Men get soaked by a large wave at the sea front in Mumbai, India. – voice of america, day in photos  

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mistaken for a fox

the soreness in today’s forearm telling the story of
yesterday’s work (lifting and rotating
strainer after strainer full of
blanched kale from
boiling pots to the cold water bath
mistaken for a fox at first
the tiny fawn on the far end of the pond
lowering its face to the water for
a long long drink
while trish, baigz and i
dry and dress
after our post-frisbee swim
(which, by the way, is fantastically cool
in this morning time slot)
the fuschia/pink/red skin
of the red norlands we
dig up out of the chicken yard beds and
how, in between hauling filled buckets,
i pause under the mulberry tree reaching
up for a sweet dark purple power pellet
do you want me to keep going? i ask mica
midway through my ‘everything on the to-do list’ ramble
after she asked what is making me so busy
don’t stop she says if it’s helping you
intoxicating mo says
about the subtle-sweet fruity smell
of the season’s first snapdragons
as i hold them up
(light pink/hot red/cream yellow)
for her to inhale
where’d that nooch monster go i say
about emory who, earlier, showed me
the nutritional yeast mountain
he poured on top of
his leftover bagel snack
the mashed up mellow green
of avocados (turned guacamole)
up against the bright! of
slices of yellow pepper arranged in a semi-circle
along the rim of the guacamole bowl
lightning bug
in the not-yet-dark flaring
its glow on the leaf of a
strawflower plant
whose blooms have just come on)
while i tilt the watering can spout
the exhaustion at the end of a day
that started at 8 (in terms of hard work/play)
and ended at 9:30pm
kicking my ass so hard i almost cry
while stepping into the outdoor shower
in the last licks of daylight
on one of the longest days of daylight
(happy belated solstice)

some things
(like the constellations of lightning bugs
flickering on/off
[like music made of light/motion
rather than sound – mutl-part harmonies])
cannot be captured
on film (photo or video)
which means you just have to
sit out there on the bench you made
several springs ago
and lean into it
eyes open to the darkness
laced with light
from the water world:

A man rows along a flooded pedestrian area in Poyang County, Jiangxi province, China.  – voice of america, day in photos


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as we begin our exits

first we sing the come home song
and then we proceed slowly, quietly from there
one is too many [violent hate-killings] i say
after mo lights the candle and the five of us circle
on blankets in the shade of the oak trees
on slater’s
holding vigil
with a vase of tigerlilies, an offering of 3 strawberries,
a clear cool jar of water, a feather, some chicory
i wish i could be standing
on the bridge as they cross over
just to hold their presences


i am going to do one intentional life-giving/supporting
thing today
i say as we begin our exits
you know this one well
i say to alline across the table

about the no disclaimers guideline
in between free-writes

how the particular strawbale mercantile smell
after i pass through the door into the back hallway
reminds me of the early fall last year,
the first feet i started to walk on
(erasure poems)
in the wake of the grand mess of
i can’t do this anymore

mo and i floating in the cool of mica’s pond
me with the yellow noodle her with the purple
(or was it the other way around?)
water fountaining

the eye-of-the-tiger station
cranked loud meaning
my earphones blast gnr, journey, the scorpions
while i power through the stitches of
the last 10 harnesses
feel like a teenager i laugh
to baigz with these things in my ears
the sound
of the first locust of the season
piercing the air with its buzz/whine
under the just-arriving light
of the moon (full) on day of longest light
of the year

when my dad picks up
on the other end
we talk bonsai
and moon
and driving stickshift
asks if its full over here
tells me he is simultaneously learning
which kinds of plants to bonsai and which not
while also wondering exactly why
he’s doing it at all

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the coolness that enters me

sucking in as deep of breaths
as i possibly can of freshly dried peppermint
the coolness that enters me similar/comparable to
jumping into a body
of cool clear water
stainless steel bowl
in my lap/held by the shape of me
as i strip dried peppermint leaves
from their dried peppermint stems
whilst sitting atop the rainbow/lilac colored blanket
in the orchard next to the solar dehydrators
in the day’s first patches of shade (meaning:
the sun is lowering itself into
the treeline)

when i ask about the burny part
(smoke seen rising near karma
while cynthia and mike go about
their barrel-making)mike explains how charring the barrels
(light, medium and heavy)
changes the color/flavor of the

the thing about otis reddings voice
is that there is not just one thing
but how it makes me fall into myself,
how it reminds me of the time of discovering the distant sound
of the humming light rail heard from
the window the mornings i woke
at milo’s side,
how i didn’t know what was coming next
as i swooned hard/deep in the sea of what was,
how i want a word
for the melting-into
that his honey voice plus horns
ferries me to
angled shadows of spider plants
cast on bedroom wall in the
rectangle of loft window moonlight

sewing the zigs and zags of black elastic and pausing
to take note during krista tippet’s interview with rebecca solnit
who shares these gems, amongst others:
there used to be products advertised in comic books and things, instant results guaranteed or your money back. If disappointment is your goal, that’s a sure-fire recipe for it… Occupy Wall Street was pronounced a failure before it had really gotten going. at one point there were Occupies in New Zealand, and Japan, and Europe – in California alone, there were about 400 Occupies at the peak in late 2011. And they dispersed as these encampments in people — in which people had these extraordinary dialogues. The impact of those dialogues is hard to measure. But you can look at Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren as and in Bill de Blasio of New — the mayor of New York as people who are kind of carrying those frameworks into the mainstream. And into electoral politics. And you can also look at both national things, the movement against punitive student debt and …

what’s interesting is that a lot of people believe those stories. [in reference to: untruths that were reported write large about violence/thuggishness/savageness in new orleans after katrina – the guys who got portrayed as gangsters and things were the wonderful rescuers and these really able-bodied young guys who did amazing things.] And we often treat stories like they’re very trivial, they’re story hour for kids or that — but people live and die by stories. And people died of vicious stories in New Orleans. And everybody could have been evacuated in 24 hours. Everybody could have been evacuated beforehand.

Whenever I look around me, I wonder what old things are about to bear fruit, what seemingly solid institutions might soon rupture, and what seeds we might now be planting, whose harvest will come at some unpredictable moment in the future.

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to have a chisel

talking privilege in the tomato beds
as we weed our way along
i want to complicate it i say
it’s not a tradeoff
how it feels good
to have a chisel back in my hands
while i work (by the rule of halves)
away the edge of the post
under cynthia’s guidance

to make a tenon
and then beveling its edges
(chamfering, as it is called)
the white blossom
cynthia delivers to me
silk onto my dressertop
yucca she says when i ask
what it is
hosh brown tookie calls tyler
after a day strung together with
hashimotos jokes
which i can’t help but keep pushing
but only because tyler does too
cynthia pantomiming
eating a sandwhich flamboyantly
just before tyler
counts with his full body
because we are on the train bridge playing
(between trains) in the nature
of the adverb
and how we howl with laughter
and the ridiculousness
as the sky powders into its purple pinks
around us

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ice cream rendezvous

molecular cohesion/non-cohesion baigz says
about the current state of the group
and the nature of collective living

tossing drops of mint water
with a sprig of spearmint
to ty and trish and cynthia and tookie
as we heat-wilt on the porch
just like a catholic priest
blessing a congregation
the shock/delight of the smallest bits of cool
landing on skin

the blankets we lay in the truckbed
per mo’s suggestion so we
don’t burn our asses off when we pile in
for our post-meeting ice cream rendezvous
at zimm’s

sounded like a cat but bigger
both tookie and mo say
about the creature they heard last night
outside sugar shack
which they’re guessing to be
a bobcat
how the dust rising off the gravel road
when a car passes tells the story
of our need/want/hope for rain
Women carry pitchers filled with drinking water in Devmali village in the desert state of Rajasthan, India.

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