Friday, May 31, 2013

The Tracks

Fair spring brings her green
to both sides of the tracks.
Then, cruel summer gazes stern
and burns the poor side back.

When the rails are too hot to touch,
the price is too high to ride
that train that cuts the country
between the wet and dry.

Some fools will write of water
with dime store fountain pens
and stand with buckets 'neath a blue sky
waiting for the drought to end.

But, me, I'll ink a ticket
and forge myself a way
to get this poor man's daughter
off these tracks and on that train.

For Hannah's prompt at Real Toads

Wednesday, May 29, 2013


In the quilt quiet,
I am a da Vinci drawn
on the bed and breeze.

For Words Count at Real Toads

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Window Box

The soil mix is superb,
and the sun and shade divine.
My sage and basil flourish.
So, why can't I grow thyme?

For Open Link Night at dVerse

Monday, May 27, 2013


I picked for you
a star stemmed moon,
but left the roots behind.
I vased it prim
in heart shaped glass
and watered it with wine.
Then, nooked it near
your bower bed
to feed upon your dreams
and vein you through
with fertile nights
to turn your bloom towards me.

For Open Link Monday at Real Toads

Friday, May 24, 2013

The Location

Nothin better than that Okahoma sunset & a pumpjack silhouette
Image via Pinterest

Southern Baptists say
that the Holy Ghost came
to banish dancing
on Friday nights.
So after football games,
the wind whipped
all us
oil field trash outta sight

to The Location.

We'd park up in the blackjack,
headlights toward the pumpjack,
crush us a pipe,
and pass it around.
Cooler full of Bud Light.
Keystone on a bad night.
Fly, I'll buy -
back road it to town

from The Location.

I was in the bushes for a squat
so I didn't see Todd
try to jump the bonfire
and trip and fall in.
We prayed for him on Sunday
and fund raised on Monday.
Come Friday night,
bonfires burned again

at The Location.

When I was in high school, the big party place was an old pumpjack site.  Believe it or not, it was nicknamed The Location.  A coincidence I couldn't resist for Fireblossom's "location" prompt at Real Toads.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Bad Connection

I couldn't hear you over the rain,
but I cradled the connection
just the same
bad as it was
just because
I might hear you speak my name.

Dapple down
sweet apple kiss.
Twine my tongue.
Bind my wrists.
Make a habit
of my hips.
Or, just find a way

to call me back tomorrow.

Getting Listed with Karin at Real Toads

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Siren / Torch Song

First Verse

If I could have cut through the red tape
(oh, yes, you will give me my child!)
a little faster,
we could have made it home
before the siren song.
Bad timing.
Instead, we joined the crush in the hallway,
backs against the wall,
old muscle memory
duck and cover.
A little girl I didn't know hid her face and cried.
I touched her arm and whispered,
"Don't worry.  It's not even close."

Second Verse

Death grinds north,
nebulous and rain wrapped.
Finally unpenned, we make a blazing fast break for it.
How many times did I tell my child we were safe
even as I stacked pillows in the hall?
How many times did I assure her that everything was fine
while the opaque sky called me out?
Did she believe me
or the helicopter holding a storm track hover overhead?

Verse Three

You don't realize that you've been holding your breath
until the siren cuts off
and you breathe again.
All clear . . .
and all silent,
but for a bleak, radio voice
factfeeding your visions
of duck and cover,
and empty slabs.

 As many of you know, my part of the world was hit by a tornado yesterday.  The above is true; I had to take shelter in the hallway of my daughter's school when I wasn't able to make it back home in time.  Four miles away, children at another elementary school did the same duck and cover, and it wasn't enough.  I don't usually do "disaster poetry," but the sheer randomness and unfairness of it all really affected me.  I apologize if this strikes anyone as insensitive.

The Sunday Whirl words for Open Link Night at dVerse

Sunday, May 19, 2013


common yarrow (Achillea millefolium)...war...perhaps because the plant was use to stop blood flow.
Common Yarrow via Pinterest

fresh and flanneled,
loosely tied with love knots
by my flesh and fetish fingers.
Narrow winds the funeral procession road.
Marrow sucked from my sleepwalk bones
sweets up the saxophone
till notes bloom . . . blow . . .

An attempt at a Rictameter for Grace's prompt at Real Toads

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Little Red

Artwork by Amanda Robinson

Little Red wears a hand me down hood
tattered and a size too small.
Her basket hangs empty from her skinny arm;
she's got nothing for Grannie at all.

But she has friends
of friends of friends
just west of Hunter's Bend
who help her sell Grannie's Percocet
so that Grannie can make the rent.

And since Grannie's been known to skip a meal
so that she can feed her cat,
Little Red will swing by the Food Bank
to try to put a stop to that.

I let Little Red go on her way;
I couldn't bring myself to take her.
I may be a big, bad wolf,
but I've more scruples than Grannie's banker.

For Margaret's prompt at Real Toads

Wednesday, May 15, 2013


Seven suits of suffering
paraded through fluorescent lights
render me a sniffling
insecure mess of cellulite.
Need I even state the reason?
Grab your so-wrong; it's swimsuit season!

So-wrong = a sarong that is used to cover up what is so-wrong

For Izy's prompt at Real Toads

Tuesday, May 14, 2013


She's marked
as his
with diamond musk
and pearl piss.
Her dog collar
noose necklace

And should she slip
the leash,
he'll burn the beauty
to beast.
Erase her
remake her

For Open Link Night at dVerse

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother Time

Time was slow coming,
and I labored long -
drop by violet drop-
until the water clock
tipped and spilled her squalling
from my birthing squat.

Her cries brought
the first sunrise

up from between my trembling thighs
to hourglass my breasts and suckle

till I withered
to ash
without ever knowing fire
or the touch
of a man.

My take on Kim's Violet prompt at Real Toads.

Friday, May 10, 2013

The Radio

The counselor says
that my attitude is the problem.
The way I see it,
the problem is the constant creeping
of my step-dad's fingers toward my twelve year old cooch.
But, you can't say things like that to a counselor.
So, I tell her about my radio.

It's big, and it's badass,
with dual speakers and bass boost.
Ever since I learned that DJs
(unlike God)
take requests,
I haven't turned the thing off.
Down low, it's the heartbeat
of my room womb.
Up loud, it's the beat
that boundaries me and mine.

Well, step-dad told me to turn it off.
I refused.
He told me to turn it off OR ELSE.
I turned it up louder and sang along.
He actually threw the breaker and cut off the power to my room,
and I . . . switched to batteries.
Whatever came next, that one moment was worth it all.

The counselor says
the problem is that I
want to be the boss,
to be in charge,
to have power.
The way I see it,
she doesn't know the half of it.

For Marian's radio prompt at Real Toads

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Her Dying: A Review

In her dying, there is no poetry.
No pretty words to honey the hemlock.
No form to give grace or soft artistry

to the rattle and rasp of the lungs locked
leaden in the brittle cage of her chest.
Shallow, unmetered breaths the pen forgot

to flesh.  But, really, what did I expect?
Barren brevity and brutal endings
are the kinds of work the Author does best.

A rough Terza Rima for Form for All at dVerse.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


I'm a complex girl
in a complex world.
Of complex thoughts,
I can't get enough.

But, complex sex
just puts your kinks
in my neck.
When it comes to getting some
I'm just a simple fuck.

For Open Link Night at dVerse

Saturday, May 4, 2013

In Those Days

Castel del Monte by Edward Lear

In those days of book fed burning,
I was just a girl still learning.
Churched, but unschooled to the yearnings
waiting just beyond the stone walls.

I turned to prayer for curing
in those days of book fed burning,
but it could not still the stirring
and shivering each time I saw

you out in the wheat field working,
hands to the earth for your earnings.
In those days of book fed burning,
rosaries rubbed my fingers raw.

And, the sweetness of that hurting
was the ache of a child turning
to woman with no returning
in those days of book fed burning.

For the Birthday in May prompt at Real Toads

Friday, May 3, 2013


File:Ara ararauna Luc Viatour.jpg
Wikipedia Commons

My name isn't Polly.
I don't speak a word.
I've never met a pirate.
I think sailing sounds absurd.

I don't want a cracker,
despite what you may have heard.
I'd prefer a cracker's finger;
now, who's a pretty bird?

For Hannah's prompt at Real Toads.