Monday, February 28, 2011

The Big Boss

he calls me to his office
where he leans back in his chair
to allow his belly room to breathe,
the better to instruct me in the finer
points of his trade while I notice
a friendly greeting left on his whiteboard
dated 1997and wonder if he
hasn’t made any friends
since then.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

It's a Bad Month to be a Dictator

I.  Tunisia:  Ben Ali
Flames of revolution!
sparked by a funeral pyre,
a man tumbling from an electric wire,
tear gas in the streets, beatings,
strikes and solidarity, soldiers
sweeping their scopes around
like flags in a changing wind
to settle this story.

II.  Egypt: Mubarak
ungrateful peasants!
who dare to stand peacefully
 in Tahrir Square, returning each morning
to sweep away the litter, the tears,
the blood, returning with hopes and dreams
that would not be crushed.

III:  Libya:  Qaddafi
Machine Guns and AK-47s!
may scatter them like so many
birds falling to the ground
like stones,  then flocks taking to
the air again to beat their wings
against forty-two years of tyranny.

They will not fail.  Freedom.

Prompt from SH

Saturday, February 26, 2011


a thin crooked staple
scars the top right corner
as a frown scars a beautiful face.

a straight staple
with braces, those two
points that punctuate from
the back like the lover
who offers her mouth
full of metal.

With an emphatic electrical
thump, twenty-four pages stapled
together by perfection:
a straight staple in front,
two perfect metal clasps in
back, tiny teeth hidden in
the depths of knowledge. 

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Impossible Pose

the students lined up against the wall
willing, if unable

to follow the impossible
instructions, even less the demonstration of

knee soft, aligned with the toe, outer edge of
the foot parallel to the mat, back leg up  strong

reach for the sky, pelvis stacked over front foot
collar bone relaxed and open, breathe easy

without collapsing, we tried
to accomplish the impossible pose
and will try again next week.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Meeting in Boulder

they don’t drink wine
preferring to sip green tea demurely
from their stainless steel thermoses
purchased at Whole Foods,
guaranteed sweat-shop free.

they don’t eat cookies
because they have white sugar
that widens the waistline but
they might nibble a Fair Trade
chocolate bar.

enjoyment is measured by
how healthful it is and by how
many calories, by how much it
might affect athletic performance.

Pass the red wine with sulfites
and the cookies that are loaded
with butter and sugar.
I’ll take them all.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

In sorrow for Christchurch

buildings fall to their knees
praying for forgiveness, for
sins they never committed.

Photo from:

Monday, February 21, 2011

The “K” of the JKR Theory speaks to us

"K" describes how
two spheres reach across an infinitesimal
space to touch each other, sacrificing their perfect
roundness for a euphoria of connection, each
giving in proportion to her Modulus, selflessly
stretching, reaching for perfection in unity.
we, who listen raptly from our metal
folding chairs in the auditorium cheer
on the pair, wishing for them what we wish
for ourselves.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

annoying boys

 they complain about mismatched
plastic covers, they don’t see
dirty dishes and “forget” to put
away the leftovers;  they dance around
the kitchen in their boxer shorts brushing
their teeth after having squeezed the last bit
of toothpaste from the middle of the tube,
the top spinning on the floor covered
with dog hair, what else;
once in bed, they pull your finger, fart under
the covers, roll over, pulling all the covers
away from you and drift off into that
deep sleep of contentment.  
what a wonderful life.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A belated Valentines Day Poem

 sigh....internet was down for two days at the hotel in Savannah and I could not post!  Terrible!!!

so many wives
demand a special dinner, flowers and chocolates
from the men who sat all day
in hotel chairs listening to lectures
about fracture mechanics, interfacial energies and
pressure sensitive adhesives
while they shopped on Broughton Street,
but I did not
shop today, I sat in an ugly hotel
chair and listened to talks about
surface characterization, rupture mechanics
and chemical mechanical polishing.
I do not want a special dinner, flowers
and a box of chocolate.
I’d be happy for a hug and bar
of Chocolove, make that
Sea Salt Almonds in Dark Chocolate. 

Sunday, February 13, 2011

De-magnetized randomly

my room key card keep dying
at the hotel door, in the elevator
the buttons holding their breath as
I keep inserting my room card
with no result looking so silly standing
in an elevator that does move but
in random directions as unseen
passengers call it
i ride up and down helplessly
until the elevator stops randomly
at my floor and i get off
only to realize my key does
not open my door and i
once again randomly ride
up and down and up and down
until i arrive at the lobby
asking for a new key only
this time, with purpose, riding
up the elevator to floor 5
only to topple exhausted
into my bed.

Friday, February 11, 2011

A Frenchman at breakfast in America

barely glancing
but with disdain
at an American breakfast
in a hotel
(even though a half way decent one)
of rubbery eggs and greasy bacon
drip coffee and white rolls
he inquires
is this what you usually eat in

Thursday, February 10, 2011

On wearing a ring on your left hand when you are not married in Savannah, Georgia

I twist my gold ring studded with cubic zirconia
while listening to two men discuss mutual funds
and pensions as soon as their wives leave
for the powder room
this ring, purchased on budget in a foreign city
blanketed in smoke where couples stroll arm in
I pretend I had someone, too,
a foreign correspondent currently stationed in Egypt
or somewhere else romantic
I wear it to feel respectable
treasured, unavailable
The foursome have moved onto breakfast plans
and AARP discounts
a baby at the next table cries in protest
my wine glass is half empty
a cotton  train rumbles by
black under white, tourists
stroll candy shops
Sweet Savannah in spring.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Units of Measure

Inside the barn (b),
the Lilliputian lucky hands must fit
inside to feed the horses squished
together in a femto-meter-squared
abode, oh so tight inside they
explode like fission by-products
from a uranium bomb only to end
up in the outhouse (o), tighter yet!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

black on white

after all these years she loves me
for black words on a white sheet
of surrender like flags planted on
the fields of war long after the
troops have gone home.

Monday, February 7, 2011

The not-so-obvious meaning of hyphenation

another npr commentator who hyphenates,
her oh so liberal-intellectual thinking
informing us about not-so-obvious
points of view based on quasi-real science
mostly based in fact or at least close enough
to pass stratospherically high over the
heads of the illiterati of the non-hyphenated
Fox commentators who talk white
and do black, and do not hyphenate
their last names.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

White on White

it was the end of the beautiful white flowers
just a day ago so carefully trimmed and immersed in clear
water for her, floral preservative added to assure
the longest blooms in the hope

that she wouldn’t leave, that it wasn’t
true, a bad dream in a beautiful house, if the flowers
were in bloom she would not leave would she

put the white blooms in their white grave
on the way to her new life.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Take a lesson from a flamingo

look around,
back to front, left to right
while we groan collectively at our desks
with each ten degrees of movement
after staring straight ahead for hours
at our computer screens, steadfastly
growing our dowagers’ humps.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Emily Dickinson's Emdash

the scholars battle, pitting one doctoral thesis against the other –
the emdash against the endash, or was it a mere flick of the wrist –
a grammatical reprobate or an eccentric transcendentalist writing
especially capriciously or just jotting down a cake recipe as
it were a possibility inside a closed up house with the curtains down
while she sashays across the page, dancing up and down in
giddy punctuation then quietly slowing, her tea having
sloshed completely from her cup spilling overly onto her
notebook, she sits solemnly at her desk wondering what
they will think of her marks and will they see the words
in between.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Homemade Margaritas

he’s tipsy alright
not even finished his home-made
margarita blabbering something about
ever-clear versus the real stuff
tequila, expensive tequila that the girls
drink on Tuesday nights so they’re used to
it alright, not a lightweight like he is tonight
lying on the bed babbling about something I’m
not listening to it makes no sense and I have things
to do alright I’m tired too, off to bed for the two of
us oh he’s already sound asleep mouth open snoring
just like the dogs lying in the doorway.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Dancing in Doggie Pawz

she wears the purple, he wears the blue
they dance across the oak floors
like ballerinas in pointes, delicate
high steps followed by delirious dashing
across carpets no longer tethered to
the ground, folding upon themselves against
sofas and chairs, stoves and tables
that i disentangle one by one from
the leashes, picking up one
blue bootie to replace onto a brown paw
before shooing them out the door into
the bitter cold, returning to my coffee
and newspaper to enjoy the quiet morning.