Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Softly and Tenderly

Softly and tenderly,
Jesus is calling

Cheryl and I sang with the others,
standing on the risers in our choir robes
like Christmas angels on a tree. 

Come home, come home,
you who are weary come home

So Cheryl came home
with me to the one-bedroom house
with the rag rugs and 
my grandparent's four-poster bed. 

It's a Kindness to each other,
something a lady understands can't be a sin;
it's a Kindness, our Mercies to each other,
and if breasts are for babies, then baby, I'm in.

See, on the portals He's waiting and watching,
watching for you and for me.

Cheryl sings it in the morning
softly, to herself
with coffee in one hand and keys in the other,
to drive the kids to school on the bus.

Earnestly, tenderly, Jesus is calling
calling, O sinner, come home!

I'm home already, or as home as I can be 
with the cream in my coffee all the sweet that I need;
softly and tenderly...taking care of my own,
and all who are weary, Come home!
just something for Rommy's goose "Virtue or Vice" at Toads.



Tuesday, April 24, 2018


"I was born here and I'll die here/against my will" --Bob Dylan
Borne by a yellow-black bitch and dark as a plum,
our cat tried to asphyxiate me,
but angels slipped me breaths 
disguised as fists.

I became the cellar fighter of the infant ward,
with a smile that peeled paint
and the ability to read minds.

I planted nightmares
with bone-breakers 
from the little perfect fingers of every thought.

Now, here I am on the street,
baking bricks on my tongue
and cursing up cathedrals where burger places sank.

Come to bed with me, woman,
here in the alley on my mattress barge.
I'm a woman too, under the bruises and fractures.

In the middle of the night,
my instincts will kick in and I'll thrash,
whipping and snapping like a downed wire--
I can't control it. 
I'll sorry you a dove from my prison cell. 

All I want
is to be arrested with my dogs under the Mann Act
while trying to die in the pansy garden
under the birch branches
in Michigan in the spring.

Custody can be mistaken for love. Can't it?
I'll straighten my fingers for the first time in my life,
crawl out from a crease in my target-face,
and pretend I'm some beauty
on the Mackinac Bridge
stepping over into the clean of the breeze.

for both Poets Of April and An Antic Disposition at Toads.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

This Is The Last Poem I Will Ever Write (yayyy!) Oh No I've Changed My Mind Again (booo!) Good Night & Thank You.


I made it through day 20 of

non-dairy nano neener or whatever,

and now I need to 
 attend to important retiree shit.

^^^(not a poem)

I want my mornings back.  I need to binge watch something and eat ice cream out of the carton with my hands. I need to sing "Puff The Magic Dragon" in a heavy German accent. I need to look up Roger Freed's career batting average, and how to make a bundt cake and then not make a bundt cake.

I need to put my feet on the back of the couch
with my head off the edge and my tongue hanging out
while watching "Alice" reruns.

I need to ask Zacky Peanut "Who's a good boy?!?!"  
(Zacky Peanut is!)

I need to blast the stereo.

 I cannot brain today.

I have the dumb.


Friday, April 20, 2018

Sunset On The Cul De Sac

A pestilence took Jenny.
Our dolls' heads puked and did 360's.
Dad dumped Mom.
Bitches blew up his phone.

Kool Kat said,  pulp Jenny for a spell book.
Sun Rayz got her period.
I had a cool scab.

Doctor Rover couldn't save Jenny.
Mom's on bath salts.
Cloe kissed me for practice.
Damn the mosquitoes. 

a bit of foolishness for day 20

and for my BFF's flash 55 party.

Wednesday, April 18, 2018


Our Lady of the Blackberry Vine
reads Rilke for the thorn-caught ghosts,
herself their only anodyne.

With sugar cane and turpentine
she paints their lonely coffin-boats,
Our Lady of the Blackberry Vine.

She makes for them the Holy Sign
her foxfire flock in rotted clothes,
herself their only anodyne.

Willow wafer, cypress wine,
saint cards she sews in pocket-coats,
Our Lady of the Blackberry Vine. 

Her hair is braided serpentine
to be for them a woven host
herself their only anodyne.

No Diocese need her assign
to wash the feet that need it most;
Our Lady of the Blackberry Vine
herself their only anodyne.

for day 19, ever so slightly early.

I have never had any success trying to write a villanelle. The only one I ever managed to finish was a light-hearted one about my dog. But I thought I would try again, and this is the result. Thanks again to my BFF hedgewitch for the forms she recommended at my request.

Whee, or How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The G's

"We are but a moment's sunlight"

In the stylish modern kitchen of God,
we are all just a glass
dropped from the Divine Hand.

All that came before
and all that comes after
stretch immeasurably in every direction--
God's crib is huge.

Ahead of us,
the Italian marble the Divine Dogs tread
will smash our vessel to smithereens.

For now, though, there's this weird fleeting instant
while we're in flight,
very importantly sweating which way we slosh
inside our little temporary capsule.

Very soon we'll be released,
set free to flow in the Cosmic Spill.
Don't worry, He's got cupboards full of Waterford,
and we'll be launched again
like space monkeys.

Until then don't stress, Little Rider.
Just let the vessel rock you like a cradle you can trust
but won't remember
from this time when you are dinky, but growing. 

for day 18.

and for Paul's "Write Here, Right Now" goose at Toads.

the quote at top is from the song "Get Together" written by Chet Powers aka Dino Valenti and made famous by the Youngbloods, Jefferson Airplane and others.

Many pardons are begged of the Goddess for my frivolous portrayal of Her as male in this poem.  I'll be doing dishes in the Celestial Kitchen for a year. Or emptying waste baskets in Her corner office on janitorial night shift. I am but a froward fool.


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Blue Swans, Blue Stars

He said I was blue swans, blue stars,
a painted cup on a sill, reflected  lights in the rain.
I said I am a burning book, cinders, char. 
He said I was blue swans, blue stars.
I said I am a loosened stone, gravel, tar.
He whispered, honey and  hemlock sing the same.
He said I was blue swans, blue stars,
a painted cup on a sill, reflected lights in the rain. 

day 17