Tuesday, July 29, 2008


For his birthday, she gifted
him with a raven fetish,
which, when held,
ensorcelled him
in a shadow
of elder thoughts.
Its shadow spread
and draped
across his shoulders
like Balzac's cloak
cast in bronze
by Rodin,
the French mage.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


He sat and read
his long poems
on a wooden stool
he carved from pine.
His lips purpled
as he scanned
primordial words
and his tongue
like a Chow's.


He yearned to be seen;
she hungered to be read.
It was as simple as that.
He published a little magazine;
she wrote sinister poems.
It was as simple as that.
He was twenty two and lonely;
she was eighteen and sly.
It was as simple as that.
She became pregnant
and killed herself.
He lived a long life
in her shadow.
It was as simple as that.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Hunter

qui perd gagne, qui gagne perd

He left on the hunt three days ago,
with three dogs, a bundle of spears,
and a leather bag, hanging at his side.
Now, he sits on a red rock,
watching a crimson sun
sink into a purple sea.
She stood with a child balanced
on her right hip, her left hand
chiding him for waiting so late
in the season; the burnt orange
leaves falling in the background
crowned her strawberry hair,
and freckled brow.
He hesitated,
he now thought,
because he dreaded the killing,
the washing of his spear tips
in the white bull’s blood.
Did she not understand his soul
attached to the dying beast’s
last breath and that the curved hook
left a pain so sharp in his left
arm he saw only black?
With his head bowed,
he turned toward home,
his spears clean and dry,
while the first flakes floated
down and melted on his shoulders.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008


to Julia and Ira

Fifty years ago, she was my sole companion.
When she became sick, they prescribed sulfa drugs,
which damaged her kidneys.
I was alone so they sent me to the woods,
where the old man appeared on a mule,
carrying a rifle in his right hand.
He wore a straw hat and overalls
he ordered from a Sears catalogue.
He chewed tobacco,
while he read the Bible.
There was no place for me,
so I slept on an army cot in the parlor,
where I dreamed of wolves.
Each night I looked deeply into their eyes
and read their thoughts
until finally my eyes turned yellow
and my nose resembled a snout.
For fifty years I have run with the pack.
Not long ago I faltered and fell
and ended up in a hospital,
lying next to a man who was dying.
In a febrile dream a gray wolf ate my liver
and I felt an excruciating pain.
When I awoke my roommate was dead.
The nurses whispered prayers
in Spanish as they removed his body.
When I was alone I sniffed
and caught the rank smell of the wolves
that had come that night and taken him.
I could feel them watching me
with their yellow eyes,
asserting their dominance,
asking when I would give up
and leave the pack.
I barred my teeth
and raised my head
and howled.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Icarus's Lament

At the journey's end
he awoke to find
a pile of feathers
beneath his perch.
The heat
of the summer
melted the wax
that secured
his ivory pinions,
freeing the crow
to fall
like frozen flakes
in winter.
Thus his childhood
ended with a failed
of flight.
Days of toil
stretched before him.
Ravens laugh
and crows caw
their ridicule.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


The circle closes
and centers
all within.
Soon all food
will be eaten,
all fuel consumed,
all contact
Then cannibals appear
where men
formerly stood
and fear
and flays
a flutist's
Grey bones
and marrow
bleach white
and mix
with snow.