Sunday, January 31, 2016


sleek, slippery white
skis sliding, skating,

Friday, January 29, 2016

my hair is falling out

my hair is falling out and it's not even
mundane male pattern baldness,
I can't chalk it up to old age.
my hair is falling out, handfuls at a time.
the line at my part has become a white slash
of scalp
yes, I'm freaking out
I'm too young for this, o lord
please make my hair grow back.
my hair is falling out and it's a
good thing I have that gold ring on
my left hand so he won't leave me.
although he may be bald, he
did not fall in love with a bald
woman, even if she does have

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Princess Karen

I remember the first day I entered Harvard Yard.
I quaked in my boots as I wandered among the brilliant,
the rich, the beloved, the "others", all who were not like me.
I crept into class, hoping to squeak by,
fearing the worst

A generation later, 
she owns the place, pink tiara and 
shiny boots, she quickly dismisses the guys
who claim to understand but clearly don't. 
she's the president of Harvard University,
a Princess, she will rock the world.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

eating chocolate at work

it's only ten a.m.
not even lunchtime as she sneaks
next door into her colleague's office,
we hear the drawer slide open.

she waits until he is away.

we hear the crinkle of wrapper
as the chocolate bar slips into her
waiting hands, this one filled with
caramel which sticks to her fingertips.

some days this is how she gets through
the difficult analyses, the boredom or

the rush of chocolate melting onto her tongue,
the smell of caramel warming on her fingers,
the pleasure of licking it all off.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

the drunkards downstairs

from upstairs
I hear them laughing, now done
with officers' business, they uncork
whiskey and scotch, I hear the clink of
glasses and loud voices.
even the old one, the Jewish gentleman,
tells raucous stories sprinkled with
words I never could have imagined
coming out of his mouth
(except in his former drunken youth),
the other Jewish grey-hair lapsed into
speaking in a Scottish accent and
they exchanged stories of Nairobi
slums where one can rent a motel room
by the hour, not the day.
cautiously, I opened the door to
go downstairs, seeing empty liquor
bottles strewn about the table, feet up,
paperwork long done, they will
soon be asleep,
these drunkards.

Monday, January 25, 2016

irate customers

they get it for free.
fresh home-made yogurt
delivered to a refrigerator near you.
in your own house,

they complain about inconsistent quality
to the call-in customer center, staffed
for two minutes at 2 a.m. on Monday

I get post-it notes on the refrigerator
from my staff,
asking me to tell the irate customers
to tone it down.

it never works.

the irate customers are only happy when
their home delivery yogurt is perfectly smooth,
perfectly free and made with love.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

finally tuckered her out

she finally flagged on the last climb,
her legs helter skelter, ski poles flailing.
this, after insisting we do one more loop,
one more than i ever do, she's tough,
that one,
she's tough and she will only have me
call it a day,
she'd  keep going regardless
i'm 58 and feeling it
but still ahead,
not for long.

Friday, January 22, 2016

cash and a card

no one tires of cash slipping out of an envelope.
cash for the spending on something frivolous,
a birthday present
it has a aura, a special karma when it drifts
to the floor, no matter the amount,
$1, $5, $10, $100.
I can stop at McGuckin Hardware on the way home and browse
tens of aisles of no matter what with my $30 burning
in my pocket.
I settled in for a long look in housewares
and settled on glass latte glasses, the ones that keep
your coffee warm and your beer cold.
I had bought these for Daniel for Christmas
and had wanted them every since.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

drinking wine and eating the last of the cookies

the doorbell rang
it was night
i was upstairs
who could it be so late
at night, in the darkness
i was alone.
as i pulled the curtain away from
the window, i saw the rear light of
a bicycle receding from the door
i called out to my son
it was dark and cold
he came in, we embraced
we ate the rest of the
homemade cookies
and drank the last of a
bottle of red wine.
we yawned, i opened the
door and i watched the
rear light of the bike recede
into the distance
i went upstairs to turn
out the lights and
get ready for bed.
my belly full of wine and

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Fun with a FitBit

fit as a fiddle
we fling open the door
our foray into the forest 
fulfills us, each step recorded
as we frolic over fallen logs
and frivolous French words,

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

in search of the perfect cutting board

must be beautiful, constructed 
of rare woods.
glistening layers of rose, amber and ebony,

yet practical
of sufficient height, width and length
to fit the as-yet-unknown kitchen counter,

a fine blade will whet itself
while cutting eggplants and peppers
in between the ringing of wine glasses

a toast to their own apartment,
a cozy home to call their own
the cutting board must be perfect.

Monday, January 18, 2016

the price of admission

there is a price of admission
for relationship, you have look for the
best and ignore the rest.
she told me this today
but i'd never heard this,
i lost more hair today,
leaving a large pile on the examining
table at the dermotologist,
if he didn't believe me before
he did now,
i wandered out, scrip in hand.
he wandered into the next exam room
thinking the same thing,
there is a price of admission to
have a relationship.
Otherwise you will find yourself
standing alone
in the dark.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Birthday Eve

I have always loved the eve
of a celebration, the night stars wheel overhead
it's not quite time, it is almost time
for opening presents under the Christmas tree,
hunting for Easter eggs, or having 
breakfast in bed on your birthday.
An eve is a looking forward to while
also enjoying good food and wine,
family, a few presents that came early
an eve of anticipation, an evening
of enjoyment.

Friday, January 15, 2016

tonight's poem will be written tomorrow

tonight's poem will be written tomorrow
when the moon is lingering overhead and
her footsteps are crunching along icy lanes.
she will have counted each footstep and
noted every heartbeat.
even her nap will have been quantified.
tonight she is too tired having dissected
French verbs and idiomatic expressions
je suis ton petit papier,
I am your special one
even in neglecting to write today's poem
tonight, tomorrow will arrive after
the frozen moon has disappeared over the
frosty hillsides
I will awaken in the dark.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

"I want a way out of loneliness, just like you"

He reminds me of you,
 your slim millennial body
encased in shiny raw intelligence,
so fragile, you are not fooling me with
your bravado, your degrees, your
brutal capabilities that have no
your heart, so delicate and refined,can
be breached, we know this as she walked
away and blood flowed across the
silent streets.
he went back to that office to admit
his truth, and her's, life is wrenchingly lonely.
is your life lonely behind the raw bravado
do you cry before you go to sleep

(The quote is from Eliot, a character on the series "Mr. Robot")

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

a new house

a little too big to pull by bike
but not by much
I like the color scheme, and 
the windows facing the mountains.
It's close to work, I could walk
and it's for sale.
moving in would require major downsizing,
dump the couch, the books, the clothes.
no room for a husband,
only for a dog.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

the two meanings of black dog

some call depression the black dog,
I wake up at dawn when my black dog licks my hands
urging me out of bed to start a joyful new day

Monday, January 11, 2016

and so - in the desert

and so-
and so there was a bus
and three men and a girl
and a young man, a boy, really.
and so there were two bikes
traversing Africa, from Paris to Senegal
and so, this boy, this boy,
what was he doing there,
the slightest peach fuzz graced his face,
alone, but smiling
and so, why does he smile
except to show his bravery
in the desert, amongst strangers
who have become friends
by necessity.
and so,
by necessity.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

A girl and her dog

she is not alone in the world.
a black dog is always there to lick
her lips and to stroll beside her
periodically veering off to chase rabbits
and dig for treats only a dog could love.
the trees are frosted in white,
the trail well trodden and she,
well, she is happy in the white,
the silence, the bond between
a girl and her dog.

Saturday, January 9, 2016


car tires crunch and whirr at 65 mph
too fast to think as the dog circles in her
prescribed circle to fall asleep,finally her
head settling onto the armrest after
gazing at me dolefully.
what am I doing in her seat,
up front the conversation circles
from faculty applications to temperature sensors
my mind is on humidity sensors and whether
the house is burning down.
the night is snow packed, the roads icy
and slick, we drive through the night
in this metal canister, three of us and,
of course,
the dog.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

time to say good-bye

time to say good-bye
the season of good cheer is winding down.
a man wielding a knife stormed the police station
in Paris, a year to the day after the Charlie Hedbo
he was wearing a fake explosives vest
and died in an explosion of gunfire.
the santa who greeted me on my way to work
has disappeared into someone's holiday box
until next year
we had greeted each other many times
tonight it will snow
and he would have been covered in white
the symbol of purity and love.

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

reflections through a friend's eyes

written years ago,
by a friend,
"jenny is the kind of woman"
followed by some truths, some extrapolations,
some facts, 
this year, still a mom 
because that never goes away no matter how old you are,
not sure if I can call myself an artist, or a poet,
just an amateur who likes to write and tries to play the flute,
I prefer ice cream to gelato now
and my townie goes only short distances.
relevance or insightfullness might be a stretch
I can still sit in a corner and stay quiet
I have learned to only speak
when I want to hear a response.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Practicing for grandparenthood

no one ever listened so carefully
nor did I ever listen back with such attention,
such synchrony
he and me, the movement of our mouths
matched, in immaculately metered motions.
we danced to the same rhythm,
this little baby and me.
we certainly knew each others thoughts
at the highest levels, exchanging ideas
on Sartre, Camus and Betty Friedan,
as his mother pondered career and motherhood.
they will talk later, mother and baby
and in their perfect dance, will figure
it all out.
I'm sure of it.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Out with the old, in with the new

out with the old
the tiny pages, an occasional Klimpt
in with the new
a weekly page, multi-photo spread
of Parisian delights
oh, 2016 will be so much better.
A larger area to write my hopes and dreams,
my accomplisments by the hour.
places to visit, daydreaming scenes,
a glass of wine in each hand,
a bordeaux and a boujolais,
bicycles, lanterns and shuttered windows
the life in Paris in the new year. 

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Growing up

she grew up
those bright sparkling eyes,
eagerness, looking up towards the world,
sheltered by her mother, a blue sweater around her waist,
she's safe to grow, the soil is rich, she is blooming
now in pink, veritas this is true, she has
grown up.
she has always been beautiful.
she is still beautiful.
she will always be beautiful.
my daughter.

Friday, January 1, 2016

Happy New Year

a new year
a time for new beginnings
new loves
new ski poles
a new glide
I rejoice in their new love
their wide smiles and their embrace
this is the way it all begins.
they are starting a new life together
we lounge across each other in the old
comforts of many years,
both are lovely and to be celebrated
on bitterly cold mornings like this one,
we share our warmth.