Dreaming of Tuesday’s Parties

Dreaming of Tuesday’s

parties, glorious rippling

colors, all manner of

food and gaiety, strangers with

strange stories, big ridiculous hats,

cacophony of singing,

and drunkenness, lots of it

spinning, hours disappearing

under the weight of the night

and slow dancing whispers,

all versions of us

unwilling to believe in a

dawning Wednesday.

Week 2 of Furlough Begins

Time and its relativity are clear now.

The animals and I keep a same schedule, and like them,

I believe I still matter. Hours are meaningful

Although they carry no cash.

 

Instead of colleagues, I converse with a cold front.

Clouds dash by at a pace I

Don’t know. Underneath, fears lap like

a flooding creek. I let them go;

tossing pieces of grass with gravity.

 

Time is stretched by gratitude.

I no longer rush. Let’s throw a ball

for the dog. I choose my adventures and

look up when I like.

There is space to expand and contract. To be.

We are now our own universe.

 

Tomorrow, a concept, just out of reach.

Dancer First on the Floor, Debi

Back then, we had sunburned tips of noses,

sand permanently stuck to feet.

Dinner, a pig pulled and dressed,

Sat abandoned on paper plates.

Sacrifice meant nothing as waves

Crashed near, and the skim of the pool

Wobbled gently.

 

A standing speaker lept alive.

Soulful beats familiar thanks to dad.

But I was afraid.

 

Afraid of my height, of my body and how it would

Move wrong or freeze. Afraid of an empty, chlorinated

Dance floor that could swallow me whole.

 

Did you know this fear? We never saw.

Instead, you charged ahead.

A dancer first on the floor,

celebrity in style, grace and light.

You the heartbeat and we now rushing cells.

 

How we danced! Your bronzed arms

Swinging front to back. Legs in rhythmic

Steps side to side. Husband across

Matching each joyful bounce. Your ever-widening

Smile an invitation to join

a life of frequency spun open like a feast.

 

Each song was a gift

and I suddenly lifted from the puddles.

 

There in North Carolina,

You taught me to be free.

How to harness a deep energy and then, pass it along.

 

We like ripples danced

until music became goodbye.

Us cousins, tired and sated, followed

like ducklings back over the boards

to a home temporarily by the sea.

 

written 4.1.20

Ripples Settle Out Across the Sky

i’m with the fishing people.
the big clouds didn’t scare us tonight
instead they blushed graciously at our compliments,
such a nice day!
below the harbor water is black and
waxed fine like a waiting ballroom floor
i have no watch, no phone, no one knows i’m here
one man catches a small one,
throws it back
to skid along the surface
soft Latin music brings on a deepening,
blues and reds,
i watch him catch the same fish again
it dances this time, dies,
one star brightens to accept it, ripples settle out across the sky.

 

written 10.8.13

yours is an elegant death

one time your green energy
was so vibrant it sang straight to
heaven in a summery heat
then, as chill settled in your bones,
you gracefully
blushed, embarrassed by this new
weakness in your spine,
until a capricious wind,
sudden,
one grey November day,
gave you the push to let go, and you did
oh so gently making your way
to a shallow grave
on the wet pavement, reflecting back
to your roots.

 

written 11.23.11

summer city steeped in promise

the smell of Old Bay blue crabs
fizzles down the spine
of an electric storm cloud
and humidity
seeps up around the ankles
of a city steeped in promise:

he reluctantly pulls back a broken screen door
and lets it shut with a bang.

inside another door a pool table is a
vivid green
field of dreams
spiked by whiskey breath
as each man leans close to take a shot.

 

written 6.29.11

untitled (winds and Whitman)

outside
winds rattle in their Song

glory to themselves
basking in their chill, their roar,
their natural state
of movement —

We- the page- the vessel
the form that gives
the winds their form
as they move

rattle, dance,
their self-assured
Songs of them-selves.

oh wind,
you fearsome friend,
always with the
troubling advice:
“move, keep moving”

 

written 4.12.11

but the potential is there

This man i passed in his street level window
in his old-man blue and white striped underpants
plays guitar to sheet music propped up by useless
paper stacks. In my world flowers overstay their welcome
and die, casually, a little bit every day
and i swim among the petals, like beautiful regrets,
among the art and the lies …
but the potential is there
like the smell of garlic wafting from an overcrowded
kitchen pot … this man finds a chord, i hear it from
a mile away and cry.

 

written 2.25.13