Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Poetry In A Garden Of Fire

In gardens of fire we grow
gold moon studs to pierce
the dark tongues of midnight dreams,

origami shadows with sun-feather wings,
hollow lightning chimes
to dangle in the wind-beards of storms.

There’s no yellow fruit, green, red,
or sprouts breaking earth, only words
rising from the furrows of fallen stars.

Today is the one year anniversary of Laughing ghosts. For year two, a new name, slight change of color, but the same old poet, at the same old address.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Faux Spring

Fire roars
in the hearth,
waxing gibbous moon
rises over a chilling
chorus of croaking frogs.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Flower In The Woods

When you pick
a flower in the woods,
you’re stealing its wild heart.
For a time it becomes yours,
pumping rain and soil
through the veins of your dreams.

It dies, they always do.
You don’t feel remorse,
nor mourn the bruised petals of beauty.
After all, it’s just a flower in the woods,
and tomorrow you’ll find another.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Ceramic Felon

Grabbed for the cup,
instead of being picked up with my hand,
it shot over the mouse pad
spewing its steaming brew on the desk.
Papers were ruined, the computer speakers
acted like a defiant breakwater, but
my favorite calculator, with soft rubber keys,
either boiled or drowned;
it flashed err…, then off.

Thursday, January 25, 2007


I was tagged by Russell Ragsdale. Because he looks so cute in his Darth Vader PJ's, here are 5 things some may not know about me:

1.) I graduated from a non-denominational seminary in the '70's. I have never preached a sermon (my kids might disagree with that), God is too kind to impose that on the world.

2.) I play rock golf. A game I invented to keep me somewhat amused while I walk. The rules are very simple. I see how many times I can kick a rock without it going off the 7 to 8 foot wide asphalt trail I walk on. As the trail twists, turns and undulates, it's not as easy as it sounds. My best is 9 times.

3.) I traded in a dilapadated vertebrae in my neck almost 4 years ago for a sturdy, reliable pre-owned one. Not sure the mileage on it, but so far it's running fine. I also got a shiny titanium plate/plaque to go with it. All for a paltry $108,000.00. Quite a deal!!

4.) Because of the above I quit playing real golf, started writing poetry and playing rock golf.

5.) I've cheated 4 times (not at all what that immediately brings to mind) and played the real game. If you haven't gathered I love GOLF!!

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Cold As...

The damp, cold air
reached through my skin,
grabbed my bones, and
shook me like a tambourine;
teeth chattering,
hair follicles stinging,
sniffing back a waterfall
trying to form a scenic view
flowing out the end of my nose.
Saying it was as cold as
the shriveled breast
of an old lady dressed in black,
stirring a caldron full of dead rats,
seemed an understated simile to me.

Monday, January 22, 2007

How Far Will You Ride?

When the wind blows, and
you pull out your token to get on board,
a mocking bird will ask,
“how far will you ride?
How far will you ride?”
An answer isn’t required,
it’s only a reminder there is a destination,
the journey’s just time spent in between.

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Saturday, January 20, 2007

Scent Of A Rose

I saw you in the shadows
of a dream I had,
riding wild horses
on the petal of a rose.

Drifting like snowflakes
on a dark silent night,
you held out your hand
and I reached with mine.

Light broke our hearts,
and swept away dream,
but your memory is mine
in the scent of a rose.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Picture Gallery Full

I saw the hawk again,
yesterday on my walk;
it flew down from a high perch
to a lower one just off the trail.
We exchanged glances, then
it froze in a straight ahead pose.
Not needing a second invitation
I grabbed my cell phone,
pressed the camera icon, aimed
and clicked to take the shot;
it flashed “picture gallery full”.
I quickly selected options,
erase all, and erase all again;
threw my arm back in the air,
searched through the viewer,
and found only a bare limb.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Promise

I know I promised
to mop the kitchen floor.
I said I would,
I will, I will…

after I walk,
after I nap—
and anything else I think of.

If there’s time leftover
I’ll push and pull,
rinse and wring,
you have my word on it.

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Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Tart Of A Poem

This page
begs for a poem
to sully up
its clean white reputation.
Who am I
to stand between
paper and desire?

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Outlook For The Day

Morning slipped out of the dark.
Definitely there, but more out of obligation
than enthusiastic about performing its daily chore.

Noon, always a brief moment, seems to be
lining up with the same overcast attitude.

I’m sure afternoon will be infected by its peers,
a disposition more related to night than day.

Friday, January 12, 2007

In The Light

I made a turn
down a dark street,
and when I came out
I dripped shadows,
like raindrops,
everywhere I stepped.

I rolled in the light
like a dog in dry grass,
I just wanted it off of me.

The sun eventually
dried my demeanor, thankfully
the trail of black spots

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Conquistador Pat

Like a Spanish explorer, or conquistador,
I claimed this plot of ground as mine.

I planted a mailbox like a flag,
with an address as a coat of arms.

Borders were set with neighbors right and left,
and allies established across an asphalt sea.

I defend it against mice and ants—natives
that refuse to civilize to higher standards.

The gold of flowers and birdsong are plundered
for consummation by my eyes and ears.

Posterity will consider the worth of this venture,
and settle the spoils of conquistador Pat.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Conversation Overheard

The wind escorted
a handful of brown leaves
over a serpentine curb onto the concrete drive.
They rattled and chatted
about global warming, or being gone
before the lady with the red Honda returned.
Since I don’t speak wind, or
any particular dialect of leaf,
it was the best interpretation I could make.

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Friday, January 05, 2007


I pulled out a book of poetry
I had read before;
started at the first poem,
and stopped at the third dog ear.
Nothing had changed since my last visit:
words were the same,
line breaks hadn’t moved,
but the metaphors seemed to jump at my eyes
like a small child wanting to be picked up.
Maybe, they did this before, and I don't remember.
I played with them, rolled them over and around
the edge curling planks in my mind, then
closed the pages, and smiled at my forgetfulness.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Shadows Don't Kiss

I don’t recall agreeing
to live with your shadow.
It moves like you,
in fact it mimics everything you do.
But, its touch is cold, no
actually it’s worse than that,
there’s no discernible temperature at all.
There’s no color of you to explore in its eyes,
no cheeks to warm against my own.
I’d press my lips to this dark ghost, but
there’s nothing there to kiss me back.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Thoughts On A Log

I hung my thoughts over
a log in a stream, and let
the cold rush of water
wash away stain after stain.

I threw them in the feathers
of a hawk on a limb;
he shook and flapped
till they all ruffled dry.

I placed them back
under my scalp and skull,
pressed and neatly folded
ready to wear in the lines of a poem.

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Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Within Reach

A drowning man grabs for rescue
at the cold, watery hands
stealing his last breath.

Splashed supplications splay the air,
screams are desperate offerings,
sacrifices on fading ripples.

The sky is neither blue, nor gray,
reason disappears like smoke in fog.

A drowning man grabs for rescue,
at the only thing within his reach.

Mama’s Recipe

Ate black-eyed peas,
and collard greens,
a New Year’s day tradition
to bring luck and prosperity.
A custom of Southern origin,
without any proof it works, but
who’s going to argue with good raising,
and mama’s recipe for spicy greens,
ham bone peas and white rice.