roll the dough out

judy telling me
about the time she was having a good conversation
at home depot with an employee
and how she was wearing her provincetown sweatshirt
(her gay brother lives there)
and how when the employee
commented on her sweatshirt
what a wonderful place –
except for all the fags
judy held her hand up

to the employee
to say stop
to say i’m done
to say not here, not now, not ever
and walked away


the air
veiled with small flakes of snow
cruising through on the wind
near the end
of a mostly gray day
while the skinned apples await their slicing
and judy rolls dough (with the secret vodka ingredient) out on the countertop


ask and thank

bird sound, something chickadee-like
coming from the bush/tree loaded
with juniper berries
one of which i pluck
and squeeze between my nails
to release that
blueblack earthy piney wintertime smell
the tiny sprig of sage
i twist off the bush
(asking first and thanking later)
and offer a sniff
to austyn
behind me on the trail
the jackrabbit
whose body is half-buried
the back half revealed, the front half – condition unknown under snow
fur of whites and grays and light browns

how i crouch down and lean in
to stroke
the softest softness
of exposed side and thigh

and how i carry this rabbit (spirit) with me
on our way down the path
from the lookout at falcon’s roost

here in wyoming

flank straps Sharon and Kathy and Tim talk about
rodeo things like bucking horses
and where the strap (that is cinched around a horses abdomen
to make it buck and buck and buck
in order to try to shake it off
which is one of the many things that makes me think

fuck a bunch of rodeos
which i haven’t thought in a while
because i haven’t thought about a rodeo in a while
but here in wyoming…)
in the car on the way to town
while we move under the kindergarten-blue of sky
and along the golds of fields and reds of willows
and whites of snow blanketing it all
and the dark solid patches of cows
moving among it all
the golden eagle
just beyond the two bald eagles
also tree-perched
that we see
from the highway
perched in a patch of sun
on a bench in town

while what smells like piñon smoke
fills my nose
the beautiful but threatening german shepard
perched atop the cab of their truck
left there by his/her ‘owners’

while they run into what they call
the ‘stuffed animal store’ (the taxidermy shop)
and the dog barking and lunging up there
with fierceness and agression
at passer-bys

i grew up outside of Austin
on a dammed lake
(lake tristan)
the lake isn’t there anymore
it’s just a pit
Kristen says

at the dinner table
just before we open our fortune cookie fortunes


THERE ARE MOUNTAINS HERE!!!! i exclaim to myself
peeking through the window blinds
at the pinky bluey sky morning light
in the mansion outside laramie that dates back to the 150
and when yana shows me the turret room

oh, how that mountain light
bursts through all the windows

the familiarness
of the pokey scrubby things

growing gold about us
under the snow

as yana shows me
around the grounds
familiar like black mesa
familiar like no more deaths
familiar like new mexico

invited to the gingerbread house smashing
tradition of matt’s family
i use the side of my fist
to crush
the rectangular graham cracker structure
to bits
how i cheer to myself
upon discovering
the dehumidifier on the shelf
of my room at high dry altitude

the milkspill of stars
across the sky

and how they align with my body
as if they are bursting
right out of my chest
and up into the blueblack cloak of sky

eventually with mountains

the slow slow walk
that the ice-caked sidewalks
reduce us to on our way to buy groceries
and back
a sunset (eventually with mountains) that lasts
nearly two hours
how to watch one:
board a flight in minneapolis at 4:50pm on january second
headed west towards denver
(make sure you’ve got a window seat)
the black and white chihuahua
squatting to poop
on the denver airport carpet
outside gate b65
(one of those gates that’s in the basement
and you walk out the airport directly to the plane
with the ramp up to the door)
blue-black yana calls
the desert-wine-sweet wine
that she made
from black currant
and blueberry

quiet and bright

quiet and bright
my two square blocks walk
the cold a slap on my cheeks
the sun a glow on my legs
something undeniably fresh
about the first day
of the calendar new year

the rainbow sprinkles
on the unicorn cookie
juniper buys me
at the bookstore


‘splosions and light shimmers

yao yao taking me by the hand
making the shush sounds and gesture
with her finger to her lips
and motioning for me
to crouch down with her
until erupting in sound
when someone discovers us
back there
madix puzzling together
his new lego kit and me
with a book next to him both of us
in our happy places
the beaker game
ami and andy and i play
awaiting guests
pouring the red/purple/green jawbreaker-looking balls
from beaker to beaker until we get
the right formation

almost midnight
seen through amber’s back door window
something rodenty
sometimes still, sometimes scavenging
a new year’s messenger

juniper and i
step outside at midnight
to listen to the sound
of a year becoming new:
light shimmers
and the first fart joke
of the year