Purple Toothed Grin

Check!

The days are long 
with hours stacked like dishes in the sink
yet I only found time to wash one glass
and pour myself a drink.

A country walk through the city

Toddling with my daughter
transforms the landscape of the city—
it stretches sidewalks like chewing gum
as every step forward is
four tiny steps back.

It makes dirty things sparkle,
things that live in the cracks,
things that fell off telephone poles,
things stuck to the underbellies
of picnic tables;

the discarded,
upcycled in her
head, made beautiful
by crude innocence,

made pure by her sticky hands.

Meanwhile,
pictures from her picture books
begin circling—

Dog!
Squirrel!
Bicycle!
Car!

and then,

Birds! Birds! Birds!

I look down as she looks up;
we each see the most miraculous thing.

Once the birds disappear
behind some dilapidated building—
the foetus of yet another condo—
we continue our daily trek,
stepping on all the cracks

her gait too small to protect my
aging back
her mind far too big to worry about
such things.

Tragic Contingency: Nixon’s nixed speech, redacted

brave men know
there is no hope for mankind

they mourn their family and friends
mourn their nation
mourn the people of the world

mourn a Mother Earth that dared
send two of her sons into the
unknown

they looked at stars
and saw blood

others will follow
but these men were first
and will remain
the night

widows-to-be end communications
the clergy mend their souls

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Original text found here:

Quiet, Poem

Before you introduce them to each other,
let words huddle in the corners of your mind
cowering at the thought of their own might.
After all, words must quiver to deliver,
so lock their doors and breathe and count to ten
and listen for that faint, ethereal hum.

Riddle-dee-diddle

I was just born again,
I’m born again each year;
you’ll know me by my smell,
you’ll know that I am here.

The treasures I uncover
are sometimes better left unfound;
and though I shower for days and days
I still smell like soggy ground.

I’m sprouting a moustache
but it is patchy and it’s green;
I don’t have a mouth but my
tulips can be seen

kissing all the neighbours lawns
while the leaves on all the trees
wave goodbye to the endless cold
and wave hello to me.

[And here’s a link to an older one that I think is a little more fun.]

Sapphony

My mind resists the fragmented notion of
the dactyl and the trochee; it wants words to
flow—perpetual—around the very stones
that Sappho planted.

The dactyls and trochees build a wall but words
seep through the mortar not yet set and warp the
thing and let the view beyond become a part
of the wall itself.

An Elegy for the Canadian Copper

The penny earned
is but a paperweight
for dollar bills
long extinct

a tarnished memory
swept into the dustpan
then in the bin
with a muffled plink

constellations in
landfills
when the sun hits them
just right

a shallow cameo
tossed but never caught
holds fate in the balance
and then land tails up

among the fallen leaves it is but a fallen leaf
as prices even out and wallets heave sighs of relief

Monday Mourning

The sun saunters in
beyond the ‘no trespassing’ sign,

crawls into bed with me
despite the blinds,

and warms your spot
already cooled and disappeared.

I turn and face
the glare of what’s to come

with the weekend recorded thickly on
my tongue–

a film set in the desert,
bacon sputtering under hot studio lights,

breakfast burning freckles
into recently discovered flesh,

freshly opened, just beginning
to expire.

It’s monday again;
the weekend will be kept
on ice.

 

residual heat

the space between
grows cold

we warm our hands
over the early days

and tug the blanket
closer and further

away.

In a cardboard box by the side of the road

A litter of poems
in need of homes.