Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year

I'm sure I hear her laughter next door
but she doesn't come over to say good night,
laughing joyfully with her new love
the one who she will marry
mothers know such things
and me,well it's a new year in NYC
and that's good enough for me
i will cuddle with my loved one,
call it a good year and wake up
in the new one.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

time to give

time to give
i saw two men shuffling along the path
my breath froze in the air
i knew my cold hands would be warm soon enough
theirs would not
it is peaceful, the echo of gunshot is nonexistent
i am not floating in a raft holding my child
i am not starving
i have so many clothes
my tummy is full and overfull and
my tongue is slippery with fat and spices
it's time to give
so many have nothing
i have everything.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

saving money

bent over the stove
saving money, tonight it's making
yogurt, tomorrow its granola, the next
i'll ride my bike and save on gas
and wear used clothing that feels more comfy
it's cool in the house to save on heating bills
and i drive an old heap that still runs.
saving money is second nature,
waste not, want not, i'll pay my
taxes, go to work and save where I can,
and spend when it's worth it
sunning myself in Costa Rica,
drinking wine in a Paris cafe,
drinking good champagne to celebrate
a wonderful life.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Early morning routine

before dawn the alarm pierces the silence
arresting the gentle swell of our breathing.
my legs swing off the bed, feet contacting
the icy floor, stumbling towards the stairs.
drowsy eyed pulling one leg at a time
through long underwear, 
its too dark to see clearly, its before first
light and trying not to fall down the stairs,
the dog does a few cat-cows as the shoes
go over the cold feet, the arms thread
the down jacket, the leash is secured,
and the door opens to bitter cold.
back to the early morning routine
of walking through spectactacular.
trees dressed in white, the crunch of 
snow under my feet, so beautifully
one we are in winter, no one else

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Saying Good-bye

he's tall now and he leans down to embrace me,
I stand on my tip toes.
it's never easier to say good-bye even
as i applaud him walking away back
to the life he's built so far away.
he'll fly away into the darkness,
call an Uber to take him home only
to wake up early and go to his job,
as I go to mine after I wake up in the
dark, grab the leash and the dog and
jog into the cold darkness.
it is the same darkness
one thousand miles away.

Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas 2015

Only under this tree would Horowitz and Hill
be a much sought-after gift, as well as 
Quantum Mechanics and Mathematical Methods - 
pulled from my bookcase after a few glasses of wine
on Christmas Eve, enjoyed in the morning,
promises of late night reading.
Me, I read Le Gastronomie Christmas Eve
and bake the most delicious quiche,
today I write poetry with an engraved nib.
The taste of Christmas waffles lingers on 
our tongues, their warmth in our hearts.  

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

The very tiny apartment

I'm tiny, they say.
I would feel cramped in this tiny apartment
with no laundry, one closet, a tiny stove
(like mine, but gas instead of electric),
no room for a big comfy bed,
and no room for guests, even the small
ones that raid the cupboards.
My giant daughter was entertaining the idea
of living there with her even-more-giant
It was cute, yes, and I am susceptible
to loving cute things but I think
only Barbie and Ken could live
there and only if Barbie brought
her Barbie Bed and her accessories.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Making history

making history.
as if a pencil was launched over the empire state building,
turned around mid-way, only to land
on its eraser at the same place from
which it launched.
to believe that a woman was behind the first sucessful 
launch of scientific instruments into space, the only woman in 900 engineers
at North American Aviation.
she was the technical lead for a new fuel.
hard to believe,
how many of us know her name?
Mary Sherman Morgan. 
All accomplishments, 
all deserve celebration
and notoriety.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

the star on the hillside

a mathematician measures the angle between the star
on the hillside to the viewers down below,
adjusting the drawing of the Bethlehem star
so the villagers will see a perfectly shaped star.
she passes the sketch to the workmen who
will pound stakes in the ground, forming an
asymmetric and distorted star on the hillside.
they will wonder at her, this woman in her office
with brown hair and freckles and grumble
at surely having to do the job over again.
every year I look up from my little house
in the village at the perfectly shaped star
and thank the woman with freckles who
adjusts the lights in the world to make
perfect beauty.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Found Photos

he was 19, that curly haired boy on the right.
I recognize him as my son, the one I walked away from,
my heart in my throat on a street somewhere in Switzerland.
he had just finished high school.
maybe I gave him a few Swiss francs on parting,
I'd paid for a few French lessons so he
could get a job there.
he had to grow up a bit.
I did, too, then.
A few months later, he was still 19 and he wasn't in Switzerland
where trains ran on time.
there were no trains here,
only shimmering sand dunes, drunken soldiers
sporting machine guns like rich women
do designer purses.
my son is too young for that world
entrenched in civil war with border stations
he may never survive crossing.
my son, who is 29, survived that trip,
I found the photos and studied them and
am glad I did not bother to know.
he will see them again on Christmas,
I will see something in his eyes.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Star Wars

it was packed, the excited hum palpable,
a vibration filled the room
applause broke out.
quietly, in the second row,
I noted that
they are so old now, my heros
and heroines, the same ones from
30 years ago, we have all become so old.
on the way out,  my companion commented that
Hans Solo had to die because he was too old to
be in the sequel,
how sad that our icons have to die on film
before they die in real life.
I am older now, I am not ready to
fall off the bridge yet, and it hurt me to

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Love between Geeks

it's a  special love between the man with the floating eye
and the woman with the large bald spot,
they are old and have thought so many thoughts
left unshared for lack of a the right companion.
they have found each other to talk about
high voltage supplies, micrometeoroids
and molecular contamination transport.
they include Jim in their love triangle although
he does not know it.
he would be so pleased.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Share my germs

come close, lovie,
let me breath warm you,
let me press my lips against you,
let me share my germs.
let me share all of me with you.
let me cough upon you,
let me hold me in your arms
and share my Kleenex with you.
I love you, baby,
let me share my germs
with you.

Monday, December 14, 2015

those who kill

i'd write an angry poem on this
but I'd prefer not to think about it as
it can be killing on so many levels,
the varieties are so diverse, some so
difficult to pin down.
so we go home early and claim illness,
or don't way what needs to be said.
i'd rather not be angry, so
with that, the evening is getting late
and my warm bed calls to me
I will go there.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

The Path Not Taken

we cannot choose any path
no matter the American mantra.
they are chosen for us from birth
and we follow the well trod footsteps of
our ancestry, but yet
on a snowy day, when the sun is
glittering off pristine tracks,
we notice there are two and we 
wonder which way to go,
the ancestors are sleeping and we
pause to consider the path not

Friday, December 11, 2015


There’s so little TBD in life.
The job, the kids, the shopping, the laundry,
The bills, the yard,
Even the dog, maybe especially.
Life’s version of dutifully playing the notes,
Line after line, noting the dynamics, the accents,
When to crescendo, forte, pianissimo, accents, legato.
The TBD lies in getting a babysitter and having no plans,  leaving
The refrigerator empty and buying more underwear.
After you hide your music under the rug,
Pick up your flute or your life and play
To the world, embrace the missed notes,

Stand in front of the world and wing it.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The Man Bun

everyone must be in style at my local coffee shop,
the right style,
the man bun,
pierced parts and tattoos.
between 20 and 30,
the millennial hipster,
no doubt well educated, waiting for the
right job, a start up with a ping pong table
I hope their dreams come true,
mine do when they hand me another
outstanding cup of coffee,
It happens every time. 

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

the missing hair

one day it went missing,
a large patch of luxurious hair.
a woman was calling for it, sickened
from cancer treatment, needing some hair.
my patch of hair went for a stroll,
meeting many others who had gathered
there to remake her a bombshell brunette.
I missed my hair but it's in a better place,
I'm sure.
maybe one day it will come back.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

the magic of scotch tape

tape music to mirrors and play magically.
wrap gauze around your cut finger and tape it!
it's mounted in a pink dispenser, or clear,
or blue, or black, it's big or small, wide or narrow.
sometimes it's double sticky,
sometimes old and the stick is gone.
I used it to tape one note onto my studded snow tires
and one over my broken door handle.
I use it to pull dust off my computer screen
and wrist pad when I'm on the phone at work.
I travel with it and there is a roll on my bed at home,
in case.
one never knows.

Monday, December 7, 2015

no excuses for not practicing during beach vacations

leg warmers double as a lightweight flute case
and music can be taped to walls, refrigerators
or mirrors, if you enjoy watching yourself
play in your bikini after coming in from the beach.
bring your second rate flute and
enjoy the good one when you get home,
in the first ten minutes, you'll be amazed at
how well you play.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

and so...

and so we wring our hands again
and offer prayers
which do not sooth the hearts of those
who have lost those they have loved.
lace our hands in solidarity against
those who reap their rewards
from dollars cast behind closed doors
of fear, greed and ignorance.
pray not, my beloved country for the
right to bear arms.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Angle of repose

they are newly engaged and she asked for my advice.
find the right angle of repose, shifting over time
from ten degrees in those moments of tenderness
to sixty when climbing the most difficult slopes.
I'll read my book and let you youngsters go.
tonight, let yourselves rest at a couple of degrees,
raising a glass of champagne to each other, bowing
low over the candlelight, I see  you at a distance,
an arch over an array of candles,
let your love carry you, ask for help along
the way.

Thursday, December 3, 2015


he may be limping but he's lifting my heart,
he may be balding but I am, too.
he has a bigger gap between his teeth, but my smile
is more crooked.
he rowed the boat around the lake when I faked a blister,
and only called me on it at the end.
he didn't ask to see the evidence.
he lets me sleep as long as I want even if the
afternoon is frittering away and he doesn't even have
a good book to read.
he's the best travel companion ever
and he's mine.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Costa Rica

I called out to the toucans perched in the tree,
I called out to the bananas and their female blossoms,
the brilliant butterfly probing the blue blossoms,
I called out to the mist, the moving clouds,
to the trees towering into the sky, the cows grazing
in the field, the bridge,swinging under my feet.
there is no one else here and so I started singing
to the volcano, and the bird which flits along the path,
showing her white tail like a rabbit running
through the woods.
I called out to the rustle in the trees, the birds
calling to one another, the hum of life,
the layers of sound that shift from 
morning to night and as we sleep,
our minds will synchronize to this hum
we can only listen and hear.