Ordering a flat black or a cappucino
depending on locale, the accent of the barrista across the counter
smiling through very white teeth, not sure if its genuine. perhaps
soliciting a tip, did she think I looked generous
pulling my non-descript beige handbag across my body,
unzipping the small leather wallet inside, I
spill the change all over the floor,
looking sheepishly up at her and her very white teeth, I
gathered all the coins to
deposit them into her gaping tip jar, her very white teeth
gleamed at me in sincere appreciation.
none in the kitchen
none on my bed next to Four Fish
not one to be found in the bathroom
next to the New York Times,
missing a pair in my messenger bag
and none in my purse,
how will I order from the menu?
who took them, every pair, the $1.99 pair
from McGuckin Tent Sale, the two
I bought the one time I ventured to
Costco, the pink ones, the striped ones,
the ones that are too weak now.
five pair stacked up in the one
place I never look, how did they
I'm sure someone was stealing
them, there are others around
here that will need glasses
who reads these poems anyway, to relieve boredom at work, to pass the
time when someone else has the newspaper? who reads these poems anyway,
stand up and state your name and occupation, your age and gender, your
favorite color and whether you prefer cats or dogs. where were you born? how many languages do you speak and do you understand
these words which float out into the electronic abyss... who reads
these poems anyway?
I do, since I write them,
my name is Jenny, I am a scientist,
I'm 54 and female, I like purple ok,
I speak English and French, and was
born in Chicago, and I
prefer dogs because they don't make
Je suis prete
avec mon francais, je connais
tellements des mots, pas de probleme!
jusqu'au moment quand j'ai ouvri ma
boite ds "French Vocabulary"and
I pulled out 8 random cards:
coat, jacket, raincoat, scarf, socks
et je ne savais qu'un des mots!
chaussettes et peut-etre meme
with the correct gender, is it
la chaussette ou le chaussette.
I was humbled, but learned quickly:
le manteau, la veste, l'impermeable,
hmm, forget scarf et les chaussettes.
Maintenant je suis prete d'aller
a la France!
Waning, the moon suspended in space over a gazelle at dusk.
Waxing, not quite a perfect spherical droplet perched precisely
Wanting, a drink, he reaches for a cold one inside the refrigerator
Whispering, amongst themselves, deciding who is next.
Waiting, for dinner, a cat sits at the window
On the wing, flamingos launching, wings open,
one leg lifts, then the other
we all go one day,
who are these people, their tethers hanging by a single strand
that stretches over days, weeks and months, two years until
it snaps, a bullet breaks the sound barrier to kill
who are these people, the artist, the intellectual, the scientist
who have the brains to do so much
only to tumble towards their own hell
carrying others with them
She desperately wanted to be blonde,
fake blonde with big boobs.
She wanted to wear a black leather sheath
with a zipper down the front,
big teeth and a long pull.
She wanted men to look at her
and want her.
She went downtown to park across the
sreet from the wig store,
gazing through her tinted car window
at the wig until the OPEN sign
turned dark, along with her dream.
I had a co-worker who used to dress like this; she was such a lovely person and we talked often. I dressed like in jeans and T-shirts, peasant blouses and long skirts. One day she said to me, " I love your clothes! Where do you get them?" I had wondered the same about hers.
If I sleepwalk in Reykjavik
will I fall into the sea, waking to
find myself nudged towards shore,
my pajamas clinging like icicles
my eyes blue to match the water.
How will I find him again,
the few hours I have left
before the bus leaves for the hillsides,
our lunch will be half eaten,
another woman may drink my wine.
If I sleepwalk in Reykjavik
let me walk towards those hills
where the bus will slow to a stop
to pick me up, still warm from bed and
he will hold me in my arms until
In memory of the young man
who died, the one who never got to
live life to the fullest, the young man
who rolled down a ravine, stopping
slowly face down to rest this way
until they came and took him away
still breathing but gone, gone away
where no one will ask him anything
anymore, he will no longer ask himself
what happened to his life and why it
had to end this way.
This young man was the son of a friend. I mourn for him and his family.
Unopened mail, dirty socks and empty cracker boxes,
Commie Obama, Never Again posted on the rear window
of a truck roaring by.
Subway plastic bags still holding half eaten sandwiches,
Bud Light beer cans tossed in nearby bushes.
Dueling monologues, ideologues
accusing women for being WHAT? for using contraception,
bankers taking off for long holidays, wallets bursting,
"I'll cut taxes and reduce the deficit" while jet skiing
on Lake Winnipesauke with my very white rich family.
Talking trash when we should be doing dishes
and mopping the floor.
it's a big zucchini for such a little sprite
she'll bring it home to her kitchen and stare at all 6 pounds of it
and ponder zucchini recipes, wandering then to look at her supplies
of bread crumbs and brown sugar, olive oil and walnuts to
decide sweet or salty, and think over her neighbors, her friends
and relatives, her co-workers and her long lost lover who
used to eat zucchini bread over coffee every fall,
then she'll decide on stuffed zucchini with bread crumbs and walnuts,
a sprinkle of brown sugar and will set about to her task,
the six pound zucchini succumbing to her slicing and
dicing, the butter, the oil, the saute pan
transforming what could have
been viewed as ugly and unappetizing
into a dish fit for a king,
or a queen, as one would have
I live in a cavern
hallways extending in all directions
Andy Warhol's a woman with red lips
dangling garishly off a too large cement wall
dappled in light from windows as high as prison walls.
a lonely silence is occasionally punctuated by the clatter
of pots and pans from a distant kitchen, who is cooking?
I am alone.
where is my house?
the one dressed in yellow, dahlias gracing south facing windows
who lives there now?
creeping up a fire escape to a small window to my bedroom
I peer inside
the neighbors frown at the new occupants
weeds outgrown flowers, sidewalks unshoveled
I do not comprehend how this has happened
this dream of moving, the nightmare
wake me up
stand tall and lead, head high, lifted chest
in spite of bullies, pianists and other bossy people.
let them know who's boss, flute as horizontal baton,
set the tempo then and he will follow
as a sheep out to pasture
a border collie at his heels.
he plays so fast, in tempo,
he counts each beat, allowing neither
that one, nor the other a tiny bit of leeway,
how lacking in generosity.
The Bb needs a bit of extra breath
after that endless C#, showing off
her well practiced vibrato.
the flutist is about to pass out
her shoulders hunched over collapsed lungs
the Ab almost a G, the flute pitches to
forty five degrees, the teacher
red in the face.
each miscounted quarter note perfectly
balances a shorted half note
the flutist and pianist finish triumphantly
on the same beat
bowing to thunderous applause.
she walks one speed
in spite of a long torso and abundant curls
you'd think they'd slow her down
her shoelaces would catch the wind
her feet spin small tornadoes with each step
her stride subdivides space
her pace changes the weather
from sunny skies to dust bowls
rainbows flung off towards the heavens
no one and nothing slows her down
we watch her disappear into the distance
and wait for calmer weather.
I noticed that my poem Missing Men had links attached to two or the words. I'm not sure how this has happened and I fiddled around to try to get that to go away. I'll have to investigate. If anyone knows what the heck is going on and how to fix, please let me know!!
the nice ones that never had dates in high school
lacking in testosterone, the ones that are married now in
spite of (acne) or a slight pot belly, the nice ones that
make good fathers and husbands, where are they now
for the women who wish they hadn't gone for the high
testosterone irresponsible men that now sail around
the world with women twenty years younger, the malleable
ones, we are not so malleable now, more intelligent,
ready for a nice man with a paycheck, a gentle heart
looking for true love.
no one has fed me in the last ten minutes
since they carelessly dropped crumbs from their sandwich
between the rocks, a few raisins fell from their hands
and the little girl didn't like the apple piece her mother gave her.
I'm starving, I know you can't tell as I press my fat belly
against this warm rock trying to look slim from your angle
so you'll take pity on me and feed me your leftovers.
I send them from a cafe in a far off town,
scribbled while drinking a decaf cappucino
with the intent of legibility
my hand trembles in spite of itself and
the words appear spiky and incomplete
drifting off in a straight line towards the next
I'm sorry I whisper as I attach
the stamp knowing that somone
will struggle, holding it in their
hand for when they see me
life got you down, stressed, bent out of shape, fat, unhealthy
you need a stephen in your life, just
follow the sign to peaceful valley where everyone gets a raw hide
chocolate is unlimited and no one is in trouble.
AutoCAD, you are so bad
you make me blue, I want to be through
with you, AutoCAD, so sad, so sad
you should make my work so easy
instead you lather me into a frenzy!
the poor tech stranded at my desk
shoulder to shoulder I don't let him rest.
AutoCAD, you make me so mad
because your installer is so bad.
they say it goes by so quickly
I watched every inch, listened to every word
it takes time to grow up
we lived it together, all the outgrown shoes,
pink tutus and shiny tiaras, stuffed bears,
skateboards and school proms
quite a lifetime of stuff and adventures
all carried inside and onward to
hiking boots and blue tennies,
five foot ten to six two or is it three
all grown up, not so fast, not so quickly
relished as all things important.
a passport to the workplace
just for you, dear employee
yes, you, holding your half empty glass of wine,
your red wine biscuits in the cheese plate beside it
I love those kind, too, and did you notice the sunset
outside or that the rain has drenched your garden
it was so parched, and did you think that perhaps
it was time you picked up your flute, or hugged
your daughter, alas, the number has changed
your passport has been revoked.
observation leads to discernment which may lead to judgement
discernment leads to decisions about what wine to drink on Tuesdays
or whether that blouse is appropriate for dinner out with a new friend
I observe a bird, it's a magpie and one chased my friend into his house
he chased it back out with a broom
I don't like magpies, I judge them to be mean, nasty birds
there is no harmony in them and I do not smile at them
even if they are beautiful
I tell my friends to stay away from them and
I don't like people who wear rose colored glasses all the time
or people who bore me even though they may be very nice
I judge them, which is bad, while discerning that
my time with them will not be happy
I observe what makes me happy
and try to stay away from the