Category Archives: writing

already dangling

the handful of sweet potato slips
i lower into the reverse-nests in the mulck
in the chicken yard beds
of north garden
_______
you have to add an extra syllable to everything
and say it with a smile
cynthya says
about the language sounds
of south carolina
that she came up in
_______
i forget her name but she is the mama of oliver
and we call them the little family because they are all little
and on her way out the door she says
that she just has to say thank you again for the poem you wrote my son
the one about the dog
we actually just got a puppy last week
and your poem is framed on a table next to his bed
to which i have to say:
yes, this is why i do this 
and also, take that, submission rejections!
_______
like childhood caroline says
of the caramel she made for yesterday’s potluck
the rest of which she brings over
to share alongside dinner tonight
_______
the very light green fruits
already dangling
from the branches of some of the tomato plants
which will most likely
arrive at ripe
in my absence
_______
despair and ecstasy  i say about this moment in the space time contiuum which currently features:
a best friend’s mother going into hospice with the remaining time alive is put at weeks not months,
the news of a sudden break up of the four year relationship of another best friend
and a birth, of a third best friend’s baby
which all makes me think something
must be going on astroligcally
_______
from the water world:

A man jumps from a bridge into the Limmat river during hot temperatures in Zurich, Switzerland. – voice of america, day in photos

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the unbelievable amount of light

the crunch of the bronze insect eggs
(squash bugs) as we smoosh them
between fintertips or fingertip and nail or nail and nail or fingertips and palms
in north garden where we work our way along the
three sisters patches
_______
the coolness on me
under thin button up shirt as i 
walk away from completing the weeding of the cosmos patch
in perhaps the hottest part of the day
(91 degrees the thermometer reads)
drips of sweat dropping
off my brows into my eyes
_______
yeah, because words can sometimes fuck everything up
i say to chad
in defense/as explanation
for connecting
with animals
_______
the unbelievable amount of light
a single bug can give off
each firefly flicker
illuminating what they land on:
the neck fur of mama cat,
the small white watering can,
the door handle,
my arm
_______
aurelia and nina and cole
as if they were waiting tables asking
person after person
around the fire if they would like a smore
and i place
two orders and then mention
how i’m going to yelp about this  place – the best restaurant
in northeast missouri
_______
mae and i both agreeing
that this is the best firefly season
since either of us have been here
(in northeast missouri)
that we’ve ever witnessed
although it’s difficult to tell in the moment
because of the great light
of the bonfire before us
_______
sheila guiding us
in her headlamp light
up the path
in the post-fire dark
_______
how i try to catch (from cool ranch porch)
animal sounds somewhere between here and the chicken yard
some of which sound like
a creature having hairballs (but 10 times the size/sound of a domesticated cat),
and almost grunting growling that reminds me of wild boars,
snapping of twigs/brush underfoot (i’m assuming these creatures are on the ground, not in the trees),
a kind of sparring and this is where the dog-like growls come in
there are definitely at least two of them

_______
from the water world:

Two men play in the Duinrell amusement park in Wassenaar as Europe sizzled in a continent-wide heatwave. – voice of america, day in photos

Girls stand in monsoon rains beside an open laundry in New Delhi, India. – voice of america, day in photos

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called by the clouds

the slight sweat gathering
under pant legs and sleeves whilel i
wrestly poison ivy
along the down-sloping path
_______

the staggered ding! of the wind-up kitchen timer and the beep beep beep of my watch timer
while i stand in front of the two mighty pots
of water boiling before me
and the mountains of kale and collard leaves
that i drop in and then scoop out
_______
called by the clouds
i walk up on slaters hill and through clearings then woods then clearings
all the grass that was once there yellowing
in bales scattered
the jingle jang of jack’s collar sometimes alongside me sometimes up ahead but rarely behind
and the thunderclouds looming
clearer into view
and later when corinne tells me it’s solstice, i feel bad for not realizing/knowing
and then i don’t feel bad because i celebrated it
in my own small way
by being called
and heeding it
and walking even when the day was long
and celebrating: the deer prints in the wet earth, the black eyed susans coming up, the white tail of a deer scrambling off after my human presence rattles them, all the ornaments hung and flickering on night trees and sky (lightning bugs), the bat that seems to have taken up residence on the exterior eastern wall of my room
etc
_______
the cat who is called ashby
curled up on my loft bed as i write
_______
how most nights
the sound of so many bugs
colliding with screen over and over again
sound something
like rain

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a sheen

the way the heat of the large skillet brings out
the greenest-of-green-things green
of the rare / few-times-a-season
treat of twice shelled fava beans
and the way that greenest green
seems to sweat from the inside out
on the heat showing a sheen

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encounters with the wild lives

never, until this morning, have i stepped out onto my porch to stand within three feet of a bat
as the bat cleans themselves
the quick flicks of their tiny pink-red tongue
and the bathing movements similar to that of a cat and bird
_______

we’re on a mission! emory says as we paddle our way
around the pond searching for tangled fishing line
that we pull out of the willows
_______

no real exact words
for the pom pom burst of milkweed blooms – sturdy purple-white flowers
opened
and their powdery lilac-ish-but-not smell
filling the room in which i dwell
where they are tucked in a small clear bottle
next to photos of some of the dearest
who have passed on

_______

i learned them as potty shots i say to emory who calls them granny shots
which i, in response, call them grampy shots
and we sometimes count from one to three and then say shoot while we simultaneiously each hurl a ball towards the net
_______

the small bouquet i arrange including day lilies
for a father whose first father’s day in 40-some or 50-some years
goes on without his daughter alive
_______

like a surgeon and their assistant  i say of emory, the lego assembler, and i, the piece-gatherer
as we follow our way through the instruction booklet
for the blue car with monster-ish wheels that, once assembled, one can pull back and then release
to set the vehicle in motion
_______
like going to church i say of my encounters
with the wild lives
that come into close range of my woodsy-edged dwelling
not the kind of church i am forced/expected to go to
but the kind of weird church i make 
and choose

_______

tropical  say of the sunset, which is this florida beach spring break neon pink orange kinds of colors
all under an arrangement of purple gray clouds
against powder blue sky

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our power

stepping out onto the porch in the morning
following the gaze of mama cat which is set on the wood siding of the east facing wall of the cedar room
where a bat is attached and presumably asleep
_______
our power snack mark says
holding out the bag of salted pumpkin seeds
partway through the nemo birthday frisbee tournament
_______
robin wall kimmerer
providing a possible answer to a conuncrum i’ve been turning over for years now:
a pronoun that isn’t ‘it’ for referring ot trees or sun or rivers or raccoons etc.
her proposal:
ki (pronounced ‘key’) for singular and kin for plural,
ki coming from aaki which is the part of the potowami aakibmaadiziiwin (‘being of the earth’) that means ‘land’
 _______

hail the circumference of a
50-cent piece 
held in the palm of my hand
outside the memphis theater
grabbed from the sidewalk and tossed back down again
_______

the plum-colored skittles package that matches
the plum-colored shirt that mica wears
and the sound of the candy shell as it crunches in between my teeth
while we situate ourselves in the front row
for the memphis community theater’s production
of oklahoma
_______
the lightening that has scattered itself
across the sky in all directions
lighting up and going dark
lighting up and going dark again

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the silver shining

the silver shining streak
cutting diagonally across the sky over me
while i lay, pre-sunset and post-dinner
on the flat concrete of the cistern’s surface
birdie the cat curled on my chest
________

from the water world:

Children jump into Istanbul’s Bosphorus Strait, Turkey. – voice of America, day in photos.

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