Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Twentieth Century Brit Lit or: Post War

There it was alone,
Crimson leaf,
In a shivering body of green.
Was this the Poet come before his time,
Flashing eyes and floating hair?
Or a prophet, fire in his veins,
And ash upon his head,
Too late to save
The world?

Monday, October 20, 2008


All balled up inside.
Compressed and compact, the words
Crushed together, mumbled, jumbled,
Filling the fist.
Momentary freedom, perfect arch --
A nod of the head, no more.
Who cares.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Fatal Attraction

Desperate. Desperate for another line.
For another poem. Anything new,
Not to make it new, but to renew.
To drench me in its warm spring rain
After these unrelenting winters.
There are warmer times, but they only
Make the grey less bearable.
I keep reading to find --

No, not here, lovely though, perhaps too simple;
Here in this verse? In this rhyme?
I think i may have found it this time --
But no.
Just words again, falling down in a cold rain.
Soon. Soon.
Well, write another paragraph for them.
Waiting, hoping, willing time for the poet,
Springing up, ...to give me life anew.

Friday, October 10, 2008


Rustling leaves --
Cubes of ice,
Clinking in the tumbler --
Golden and smooth.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Child of the Sun

Child of the Sun
: a poem adapted from Carl Sandburg's Chicago

Life force for a world
Log floater, transporter
Player with laborers and the Nation's tourists
Murky, threatening, seductive --
River of the Northwest:

They tell me you are polluted and I believe them, for I have seen
Your mines under the dark mountains destroying life.
And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it is true
I have seen the backward twists and rocky falls.
And they tell me you are pitiless and my reply is: on the faces of
Parents and loved ones I have seen the tragedy of drowning.
And having answered so I turn once more to those who sneer at
This my river, and I give them back the sneer and say to them:
Come and show me another river with its thousand feet running so
Smooth to meet the great Columbia and so vibrant, and strong and teeming,
Flinging its golden droplets a million ways down rock after rock,
Here a dappled trout leaps to meet the sun set bright against the dark soft stream;
There an angler, all boots and rod, holding back the current, cunning and quiet
As a savage anticipating the run of the buffalo
Casting, circling, recasting,
Under the blue, dew all over his beard, laughing with white
Under the awful burden of creativity, eyes shining as a young boy's
Laughing even as an ignorant fighter laughs who has never lost
a battle,
Bragging and laughing that in his wrist is the pulse, and in
his chest is the heart of a man,
Shining the brilliant, passionate, planning genius of Man,
Half-river, striving, proud to be Logger, Hunter,
Laborer, guide and life force
to a Nation.

*Update: Published in Gonzaga's Reflection Spring 2009 issue. Read about it here.