the moon is full ~ a poem


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the moon is full, ensnared, as they say, in the branches of a tree (in this case, the branches being bare, ashen and brittle).

once, to me, the moon was like a hole in the sky, when a. and i walked across the sand near midnight, the ocean at our backs, and i imagined, because i couldn’t see the ocean, that we were in a desert – a persian desert – with no destination in sight.

and once the moon was so bright it rivaled the sun, though its light was silver white and its rays were like a pollen of radiance. that was in new zealand, in moetueka, i believe, after d. and i – sweet d., who is more made out of moonbeams than a. ever was – canoed in the jade-colored tasman sea.

at this age and still the moon enraptures, makes me want to write a poem. i guess there is still some wonder in the world.



well-laid plans ~ a poem


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she marked the calendar
she counted the days
a month
a week
a day
and then she would be free

but that was not meant to be

perhaps a celestial event
had transpired affecting the tides,
the ratio of day to night,
her well-laid plans
in any case nothing occurred
as she had foreseen

the day passed
and when it had
her whole world was different
and she was chained
to circumstances
without promise of release

things that crowd my closet ~ a poem


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I can’t get rid of that –
the purse with the angel emblem
from a store that no longer exists.
My sister gave me this.

And I can’t toss the old cameras either,
like the K1000 my father gave me.
It taught me how to see

The clothes should be easier to shed,
but what about the nurse’s cape
my mother wore in the Korean war?
Though it hangs collecting dust
with whom could I entrust?

Please tell me what to do
with old collected things.
Please tell me how to part
with the things that crowd
my closet and my heart.

my anger now ~ a poem


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My anger now is not to be feared:
it’s a smoldering remnant of the past
that upon a flare-up turns quickly to ash.

And I see how once I was like a child
who enjoyed playing with fire,
lighting match after match,
until my fingers got burned.

But I didn’t see it that way at the time.
Back then I felt like an avenging angel
soaring high above the mediocrity and stupidity
of the world, laying it all to waste with
one sweep of my flaming wings.

I’m earthbound now. My wings are clipped.
And all that righteous indignation is gone.
Burned out, I guess. For any anger you see in me
is a holdover from the past, from a time
when I craved, hungered, lusted, and strove.
From a time when I cared.

the parrots ~ a poem


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The parrots appear one day – seven of them –
squawking excitedly, flying in staggered
formation just above the treetops.

Quite a commotion they make,
as if passing bits of gossip from one to another
round-robin – or rather, round-parrot style.

When they finally settle into a tree,
each selecting a different branch so that their
emerald green, yellow, and red feathered bodies
decorate the sparse limbs like just so many
Christmas ornaments, they continue their
raucous conversation begun far away
and long before appearing in this parking lot
leading to the job I’d love to quit.

And their banter, so full of joy and intrigue,
to continue as they soon burst from the tree
and fly away, sounds to these human ears
like the cacophony of freedom.