Monday, March 20, 2017

Robin's Story

Yesterday was the final day of winter
though he didn't know it driving to work
on a Sunday with no traffic on the

He noticed Robins in small groups of
three or four darting about with a sort
of teenage exuberance, in fact he hit one
of the revelers with his car.

There wasn't time to react, though he saw
it flying in low from his right oblivious
to the car bearing down at 70 miles per hour,
yelling joyful nonsense to its friends.

He yelled too, hearing the light thump of bird-body
against the plastic of his bumper though in the rearview
he didn't see the bird fall or fly and imagined it
stuck in his grill looking beautiful and untouched like
that Empire State Building jumper on the cover of
a 1940's Life Magazine.

Like it or not, he murdered the Harbinger of Spring
while scrambling to get to work, grubbing for money,
maniacally running down the only thing that might
have saved him from eternal winter - you know?

The author started spinning that kind of narrative -
giving the event Apocalyptic significance because
the author tends to write and rewrite that kind of story-
but as it happens he was also listening to Steinbeck.

The audio book story line advanced as he drove,
and the forward motion had the effect of digestion
upon the Robin Incident so that within ten minutes
it was a part of the remote past, nearly forgotten.

He thought there is genius in that approach -
moving forward without assigning significance,
and he thought of her moving forward from him
in a similar fashion, and then he started thinking of
himself as the bird with X's for eyes, spinning
along the surface of the highway, thinking of love.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Bird In The Wind

All I've managed to do today,
the day of the blizzard
when I stayed home from work
and slept until 11:30 in the morning,
is put sunflower seeds in the feeders
because I saw a single female cardinal
sheltering on one of them, her back to
the feeder, making herself small for the wind
to have less to ravage. Seeds are calorie dense
and calories are heat, so now others have come.
I see three cardinal pairs, chickadees, others
I cannot name, hear a bluejay's distinctive call
and the wind blowing on and on pushing
a continuous rolling wave of snow.

I'm trying to think forward since
accomplishing anything today seems out of the question,
the wind is making the prospect of shoveling painful and futile,
and on days like this I usually think backward

And by that I mean I am trying not to rummage through
memories because standing by the side of that grave
long enough looking down, well, it becomes me I see in
that hole in the ground.

What I did wrong was to twist Love
into the shape of her name - a mistake
because, although loved
She is not Love

But you believe it easily by repeating the association of Love
with her name, her eyes, her kiss, her sleeping body, her thick black hair
and with her memories, given to you in such a way
that they now feel like your own.

You can very easily confuse this feeling,
these memories, this world
with that woman, the real one,
who no longer has time for you.

My thoughts walk me again
around the edges of the cemetery
while something else quietly begins
watching for a gate

The time will come when my duties to this
observance are met, when I have unravelled
and untwisted her name from Love.
That day will come.

On that day, I will lay this heart,
swollen with the entirety of that world,
at the Angel's feet and walk away,
Yellow Girl.

Monday, March 6, 2017


Warmer temperatures and thin
cloud cover make a luminescent
ring around the moon,
the shiniest object,
and tonight's lovely feature.

You remembered her
undressed and how it stole your
breath and stopped the clock,
a perfect moment of art.

You remembered all
you did to enshrine that moment and how
the agony of its passing stripped you
which is an altogether different thing.

Saturday, March 4, 2017


Spring giving way to Winter today
Letting the batterer back in the house

Didn't you feel the sap in you stir though?
Didn't you forget yourself for a moment?

Smiling into your mouth
A wet ticket, walking away on lighter steps

Is this how you get on?