Poems

SHE WAKES

She wakes each
morning to song,
willing to let the rain

christen her
nakedness, to take
a chance that lines

of caravans will arrive,
scrawls of boats
and windmills

will be etched
in her sand.
She isn’t sure

she can bear
the days when birds
don’t light

on her head,
scratch thoughts
onto her page.

From: She Speaks to the Birds at Night While They Sleep
Published in For Women Who Roar


TAKE THE BONES

Take the bones
fold them in half.

If it’s below zero
pack them in wool

above 80, in silk.
You must carry them

yourself. At times
theywill weigh

a thousand pounds.
At others, they will lift

like feathers
do the crow.

From: Talk of Snow

WAITRESS

In the Fifth Street diner, windows
wide to the guttered slush and pale-bone
sky, the day shift passes like nickels
and dimes–buzzing coffee and sugar,

grilled cheese and slaw, cups of
and sides of, all up and down the formica
counter, out to the smooth-hide
booths, ring the register, pocket a bill

or two in the waisted apron. Click,
clicking across the linoleum:
slinging fries, choco malts and the one
o’clock pie. Wind up the smile,

the hustle, tend the regulars
and occasionals who lunch with chatter
spilling through lettuce and dills,
straw slurp and chomp. Four plate

juggle and sideways slide, order
up, take out and slow clunk
of the clock ’til the last tab’s out
and slam the shutters, clamp the lock,

mop up and count up the take–
jitter, all foot throb and brew
waft, out of the fry, the ogle, into pine
pitch air and car spew, to bide

and poke along, hugging the tatty
collar the round way home,
beneath a wedging honk of geese,
the scarred and bloated moon.

From: Life In Two Parts
Published in Inkwell Journal