Thursday, May 14, 2015


apparitional,  fictional,
spectral,  figmental,
delusive,  illusive,
abstract,  unreal,
imagined, un-bodied.

You, on your steady subtractive diet,
crossing your ankles in a subway car,
you can write beneath the footbridge,
"I was never here, "
but it will never be true. So be whole.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Taken, Not Found

These days I hold my anger
beneath my tongue like a charm.
Spent all my nights pining
for joy like some left lover.
[The griefmongers hoist up their billyclubs
The griefmongers howl from the satellites
The griefmongers polish collection plates
The griefmongers sleep soundly every night]
These days I realize
happiness must be taken,
pried from between smashed knuckles,
pulled from between gritted teeth.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Marriage, Sometimes

Your breath this morning:
A failed cheese experiment.
Love you anyway.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Three Happinesses: Part Two

You’ll get no happy ending, and neither will I.
Bad drivers, bad haircuts, bad milk,
our lopsided loves, blown chances,
being too much and not enough.
All the hurts of age (my knees) (your hands),
the suicides of friends.

Whatever ever after you will get
is not one happiness, monolithic,
but many small ones:
a baby learning to laugh.
Bread baked by your mother,
and later, her recipe,
a sacrament.
A sudden mouthful
of kisses in the elevator,
or one tender kiss in the morning
as you’re shaking off a dream,
one that turns into your husband’s eyes,
soft with love in a rough face.
A friend’s voice.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Three Happinesses: Part One

I know how it is. Darkness
seems more honest than daylight,
when we shuffle our hearts
to the bottom of the stack,
brew coffee, match socks, clock in.
If I tell you my happiness
I must be leaving something out.
So I write to you of griefs,
nakedly. But while you are
licking their salt from your lips,
somewhere that you are not looking
a songbird is taking a breath,
opening its mouth to sing.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Rockabye Baby: The Remix

My little sister was born when I was a teenager. I was so excited to sing lullabies to her. However, once I began to sing the classic "Rockabye Baby," I was horrified at the words, which I'd never really noticed as a child. Since then, I've heard a lot of other people express amused horror that our favorite lullaby depicts a baby falling out of a tree. So I thought I'd share the alternate words I made up as a 15-year-old. The tune is the same, of course, although I did add a few more syllables. Sing it aloud a couple times, and I bet you'll get the gist.

Rockabye baby, in the treetop
When the wind blows, the cradle will rock
Hear the tree whisper in the soft breeze
Sunlight is falling through all the leaves
A brown birdy sings you a lullaby
Now fall asleep, out under the sky