Raspberries in June

Raspberries in June He asks me to come by, read her some of my garden poems at four o’clock. June sun will be high and hot through the windows in her hospital room. She may sleep. The surgeons opened up her abdomen from stern to pubes and poked through the curves, bends, folds and hiding […]

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Whooping Cough, 1952, Age 5

Whooping Cough, 1952, Age 5 I was not trusted to climb eighteen pink stairs without fainting. I carried a porcelain bell. Not trusted with just the washable yellow robe (carry the green towel for cough ups). My chest seemed so small I didn’t know I had a heart. I didn’t trust the brown Zenith radio […]

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Ode to Slow

Ode to Slow I appreciate slow after speeding bullets, ground records, and the turbulence of climate change. Like slow food, Zafu pillows sold online, apps that ring mellow gongs to end minutes of mindfulness. Three-toed sloths live too far away for me to know. Slugs move at night on my lettuce, chewing. Rockfall and glaciers […]

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The Fourth of July Parade

The Fourth of July Parade Manzanita, Oregon We swing our pick-up truck into the library lot, and settle in the truck bed, kingpins on folding chairs. There’s a husky in a red-and-white bandana and a bloodhound with a Statue of Liberty crown. Sweating, paunchy men wear goofy hats. Aging women in sparkles guard igloo coolers. […]

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June Bug

June Bug Neighbors told me his name was June Bug. He was as black as any black man ever is. Two years younger than I. Liquid brown depths of kindness. I saw that in his calm eyes and quiet way. I don’t know how he tied up beetles. They said he got his name because […]

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The Lepidopterist’s Collection

The Lepidopterist’s Collection Mine is a flimsy passion. Awe for false eyes. Mothy deceptions. Zigzag symmetry. A simple color-code: I may be toxic. Mounting butterflies is tricky — pinch lacy wings in stainless-steel forceps and relax them. I have a ritual. Listen to string quartets. Block sunlight behind flowered drapes. Square the mounting box. Set […]

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Booze Writing

Booze Writing She writes the non-fiction marathon, grabs her metaphysical hangover to record the distillers, blogs recipes for old martinis, notes where mezcal comes from. Serious, full-time writing about booze, barstools and body/mind benders. Codifying as a way to stop her bingeing. Is that how it goes with loneliness? Scrawling about virtuous alone as relief […]

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