Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Last Day of the Year

My priorities were clear by the end of the day.
I never got to work, having
stopped on the way to visit my brother and
give him a calendar of family photographs.
My daughter called, (the quality
of her voice a dead give-away that
she had just woken up). After her
breakfast we hiked one of our favorite
trails, followed by a left over lunch
of corn tamales we had made together
three days ago, topped with luscious
guacamole. The usual nap, followed by
a New Year’s Eve dinner with friends
and the man I love so much that I take
care of his inconvenient dogs.
Good-bye, 2008.
Hello, 2009!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Falling in Love on the Dodgeball Court

They fell in love in between dodgeball
matches, in the brief moments when they
weren’t busy bombarding each other
in single-minded pursuit of victory.
They were on opposite teams,
the Certified Public Assassins versus
the Blonde Bombshell Squad.
All good things must come to an end,
including dodgeball season.
Sweat still beaded on his forehead
after a particularly vicious match,
he asked her for a date.
They sealed the deal with a kiss,
but three years later,
the dodge ball matches continued,
body contact followed by a hasty retreat
to the sidelines, until he finally agreed to join
her home team.

This poem is based on last Sunday's New York Times wedding announcement.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The Wind

the wind rides in like a train
from the west, through Nederland,
down Boulder Canyon and right
into town.
The clickety-clack of the rails
crescendos up until that moment when
the train barrels into my house head-on.
The beams shudder and creak, outside,
wind chimes frantically
clang against each other,
small stones ping in staccato
symphonies against the windows.
Tonight I will sleep on the east side
of the house, and dream of witches
on broomsticks and ruby red slippers.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Dogs are Inconvenient

Dogs are Inconvenient

He complains that it’s
so inconvenient, the going back
and forth between his house
and mine.
Why not live together,
it would make life so much easier.
He goes off to Houston to see
family and I am left to care for his dogs
for three days and three nights.
No, my love, I will tell him tomorrow
as I hand over his dogs, food,
meds, leashes, collars,
poopie bags and an extra copy
of the DVD “The Dog Whisperer”,
it is not the distance between our
houses that is so inconvenient.
Dogs are inconvenient.
Note to dog lovers and Stephen: Yes, I know you love them.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

So elusive, Peace.

So elusive, peace.
War follows peace,
Bombs follow rockets,
recriminations follow accusations,
all while the generals and the presidents
sit in their offices,
watching their troops die,
watching their people die,
so elusive, peace.

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Party

The Party

We were eleven,
seven spoke, three listened
and one laughed.
the seven spoke of how to cook mushrooms,
the surprise publication of a poem,
what happens when a family has a baby,
travels in Italy, whether to go skiing or not,
how her father always thinks she is working,
and when he might return to Las Vegas.
the three listened, perhaps unable to put together
several sentences in sequence after a bit too
much wine and port, and one laughed heartily
from over on the couch.
the evening progressed like
this, very comfortably
until it was no longer
possible to fully conceal the
yawns and several came at once,
the relaxed seating posture looked a bit
too much like a full-on dozing off.
And so, our hostess bundled us off to our cozy
beds, empty platters in hand.

Thursday, December 25, 2008


He sat quietly on the sofa
watching us through thick,
dark rimmed glasses, his eyes
watery with age,
sharp with wisdom.
Quite the snappy dresser
with his shiny black shoes,
neatly pressed slacks and
argyle sweater. We humbly
offered the one or two words
we knew in his language;
His gift in return, a broad smile,
a torrent of Italian warmth.
No need for a dictionary,
Happiness is the same
in all languages.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Oh, To Be a Ballerina

Oh, To Be a Ballerina

She confided in me that
she always wanted to be
a ballerina, dancing gracefully
across polished floors, her tutu
swirling around her lithe body,
the danseur lifting her effortlessly
high into the air.
She sighed a heavy sigh as
we started walking down the
stairs of the Opera House.
Suddenly, my delicate danseuse
slipped on her new cowboy boots
and not so gracefully grabbed
me to save herself from
an unchoreographed fall.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Squash Seeds

Squash Seeds

No one gave me any
zucchini last summer,
in spite of common knowledge
that everyone who plants it
has way too much, shoving their
excess into the hands of innocent
The truth is that I had planned
to grow zucchini in my own
garden plot, but Spring arrived
and I couldn’t find the seed packet.
I refused to buy another one
on some long-forgotten, and
no-doubt idiotic principle.
On this bitter night, with
spring an impossible promise,
in view from a location where
I almost never sit,
I spot the seeds waiting
patiently for me until
planting time arrives.
I’ll leave them there
so I know where to
look next time.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Playing Boggle

Playing Boggle

The old timer with
its incessant ticking
finally expired after
some heavy sighs
and death rattles.
the kitchen timer was brought
to play.
my life improved,
my scores soared upwards,
as did my spirits, even if
K. continued to pound me
I didn’t care
as long as I did not
have to hear the ticking
of the old timer,
accelerating inversely
to my declining word

Saturday, December 20, 2008

My Friends are Lushes

Twelve Empty Bottles

They seemed the respectable bunch,
all dressed up, men in ties, women
in black cocktail dresses, heels,
pearl necklaces and matching earrings.
We talked politics, relationships,
families, holidays, travel, children,
not a word about bike racing or riding,
all the while with a glass of red at hand,
a plate of petit fours, miniature cheesecakes
or daintily decorated organic cupcakes.
Warm hugs and promises to get together
soon as everyone headed back home,
and so I turn to my kitchen and count
twelve empty bottles of wine.
I never realized my friends were
such a bunch of lushes.

Friday, December 19, 2008

The Ugly Cupcakes

unintentional experimentation
in our home kitchen, we concluded that
whole grain pastry flour
is an unacceptable substitute
for unbleached, white, cake flour.
In spite of using the classic Joy of Cooking
1950’s edition recipe for cupcakes, even
modified for high altitude baking,
the cupcakes likely were the worst
we had ever eaten, or for that matter,
ugliest we had ever seen.
The anticipation of coating our
tongues in chocolate and butterfat was
shattered by the reality of eating cupcakes
that tasted like bad cornbread, the
grit of stone ground wheat berries
scouring our disappointed tongues.
We will coat them in
icing for our Christmas party tomorrow,
and claim that one of our guests brought them.
How wicked of us!
Do we dare?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Black bags and Pink Slips

Black Bags and Pink Slips

a steady stream of employees
trudged in the direction of the
warehouse, wrapped in heavy
coats, collars pulled up
tight to keep out the chill wind.
inside, an hourly handed out
frozen turkeys from the rear of a
truck to another clerk wearing
a Turkey Temp apron and a
black knit cap.
No company managers to shake
our hands and wish us a happy
holiday this year.
We handed over our pink slips,
in exchange receiving our
company’s Christmas bonus,
a frozen turkey and cheap
plastic mug inside a black
bag emblazoned with the
company logo.
a steady stream of employees
drifted back towards their
cubicles, the remainder of the
afternoon shadowed by the
uncertainty of a job after
Christmas. How fitting,
pink slips and black bags.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Bike Messengers

Bike Messengers

Icy roads never stop them.
Regardless of sub-zero temperatures,
torrential rain or wilting heat,
the outfit remains the same
ragged cut-off trousers, black
socks and bike shoes, a non-descript
jacket and a bike helmet
their messenger bags bulging with
documents, packages,
Perhaps today there is a
single rose tucked inside
awaiting delivery to
a client's secret lover.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Victory is Sweet

Victory is Sweet

she handily won the election,
beating out the boys from the
Finals Clubs.
she showed them that
wealth isn’t everything,
nor family connections,
fast, new cars, hot women
on your arm.
Ringing doorbells,
giving speeches,
solid thinking and
good ideas win votes.
Congratulations, Andrea!


Monday, December 15, 2008

Freshly Baked Pumpkin Pie

Freshly Baked Pumpkin Pie

the new windows have frost inside
and the birds are fat in the tree branches
their feathers puffed out, their heads
tucked back into their bodies.
lines of cars flicker in and out
of view, hidden in clouds of exhaust
at stop lights, drivers hardly visible
behind frosty or snow-crusted windshields.
the world moves in slow motion, careful
not to release precious pockets of warmth
from under wings, from pockets, scarves
or from under hats. We trudge to work
reluctantly, eager to return home
to warm kitchens and the smell of
freshly baked pumpkin pie.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Heist

The Heist

a dapper gentleman and his
three beautiful blondes
stood demurely outside the famous
Harry Winston Jewelry store,
requesting entrance to view the diamond
jewelry late one winter afternoon.
Once inside, an exchange was arranged,
a tossed hand grenade and a few rounds fired from
a .357 Magnum for 105 million dollars
worth of emeralds, rubies and diamonds.
Quite a bargain for the thieves
who roared off in their waiting car
fifteen minutes later.

Blondes do indeed have
more fun.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A Bar Mitzvah or How to Read the Torah while Holding Your LaCrosse Stick

he entered from a door in the back of the hall,
strutting between rows of folding chairs
towards the stage, his stage,
swinging his lacrosse stick as if
having just scored the final goal.
As atomic fireballs of “sweetness”
pummeled him from all sides,
he picked up the pace, from a trot
to a full gallop towards the front of
the hall, picking up spent ammo as
he went, then turning 180 to return
enthusiastic fire.
Claiming victory, he settled
into the task at hand, singing the Torah.
Yes, his voice skipped between octaves
a few times, and his new prayer shawl
slipped off his still slim shoulders;
he corrected the rabbi about his sport of choice,
she reminded him to put down his bottle
of water when she was talking to him.
somewhere in the mix of the reading of
the Torah, the launching of atomic fireballs,
the gift and blessing of the prayer shawl,
a dangerously swinging lacrosse stick
and elderly relatives going on and off stage,
this boy, a bundle of nervous energy, of big smiles,
crossed a threshold and began that process
of becoming a man.

Friday, December 12, 2008



they walk on broken streets
between derelict government
buildings, stress is rare but
depression is rampant in this
land surrounded by
a vacant sea.
a flag barricade covers the
ribbon of red words crossing
the wall of the U.S. Interests
Section in Havana.
fifty years after the Bay of Pigs,
they are frozen in time,
fin-tailed cruisers drift
down empty avenues,
followed by blank stares.
I was quite moved by the writing in a recent article in the New York Times on Cuba. Snippets of the journalist's sentences are in this poem...very good writer. Check out the full article:

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Waiting for the Bus

I leaned against the signpost waiting
for the bus to take me to work.
Two buses went by in quick
succession, the wrong way.
One must be running late, sure
to turn around at the bus depot
and head back.
It’s only 5 blocks away.
Twenty minutes later, a bus
appeared and I boarded,
frustrated with the delay.
I paced around the signpost waiting
for the bus to take me home after
seeing one go by when I
was a block away.
Twenty minutes later a bus
arrived and I boarded,
frustrated with the delay.
I went to pick up my boyfriend’s
car for him, but it wasn’t
ready yet, so I walked home.
I was frustrated with the delay.
I spent 50 minutes basking
in warm sunshine
waiting for buses and cars.
I have no reason to be frustrated
with the delay.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Story of K.

Mother would have attended
her daughter, K.'s, graduation ceremony
but she was getting married
She and husband number five couldn’t
wait another day or two
to celebrate their
holy matrimony,
sure to last a year
or two .
So daughter number three
put on her graduation gown,
combed her hair, carefully
positioning a ribbon with her
school color.
she marched in a long
row lead by accomplished
scholars, the future
leaders of America
while her own mother
cried at her wedding
as if it were the first.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

It's Dark Out There

it's dark out there
and no one can see their way.
from one day to the next
your badge may not
open the door anymore,
your key may not work
in the lock.
everyone is afraid,
the man next door,
the co-worker across the
today we are blinded
by the sun on the new snow,
a fresh beauty that knows
no darkness.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Costa Rican Fence Posts

Costa Rican Fence Posts

pity the countless majestic
chestnut trees cut to the ground,
stripped of all branches
and foliage, their lives
taken, to become
mere telephone or
fence posts.
A pity, when all
that is needed
is a row of greenery
along a country

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Daily poetry is will start again soon, too! ; )

Historic Boulder House Tours

I thought I was taking a tour
of historic homes in Boulder,
not a tour of the thousands
of square footage of modern
additions and renovations.
I was wrong, the hordes of
middle aged women stormed
the place, small groups gathered
in awestruck silence in gargantuan
walk in closets and bathrooms.
My eye wandered to the decorative
window latches, the worn oak floors,
the now defunct hot water
tank in the closet, the pictures
of the house when it was first
built. These old houses are
wrapped in tinsel and cellophane
and I peek under the wrapping
when no one is looking to see
the real present inside

Friday, December 5, 2008

Horseback riding in Costa Rica

Maybe he warned me in Spanish.
I did not knowingly sign up
to ride a horse down to that
river, the one I could see by
looking straight down, past
herds of back and white cows
perched on narrow terraces
of trampled grass.
Not sure whether to close
my eyes and pray for salvation
from whatever evil I had done
to land here in this moment
on this saddle, or keep my
eyes open to see the view when
I fell off the cliff and died a tragic death.
I called to the guide
telling him I was afraid
and he laughed a big
Costa Rican laugh.
We made it to the river,
traversing cliffs, squeezing
through dense forest on
muddy narrow trails.
We celebrated swimming
below a raging waterfall
and eating fresh pineapple.
My horse and I led the
way back, prancing and
trotting, our guide laughing
that big Costa Rican laugh.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Swimming in Costa Rica

I went swimming in the rain
this morning
after walking through a
torrential downpour
by the beach
I would have immersed
myself in the sea
but swimming here
is not for the timid
or foolhardy;
signs posted every
100 meters:
Currientes peligrosas.
I walk back to the hotel
in the rain, don my
swimsuit and swim
laps in the hotel

in the