Monday, March 15, 2010

Take a Minute to Get Your Heart On Straight

I made this for you. Well, no I didn't. But I did take the picture and then I put it here!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Cold Drill for a Cold Rain

Just got this in the mail. Some real great poems from some great writers. I was lucky enough to be included. Here are the three that they chose from me, thanks editors!:

Big Idea

He clutches the gas pump
nozzle in his hand like a gun,
swings it carelessly.
She thinks he's pretending
to be an adult, an adult
cowboy. Perhaps he doesn't
know how to drive, even breathe.
She watches the woman in the
far parking lot put her child in
the car-seat. The wind comes up
from the California grasslands
and the whole car smells like
gasoline, one easy-strike match
away from orange salvation,
one quick-lit wish to make
a sound so loud even the dead
could hear her booming.

Diagnosis: Even the Stillaguamish River Cannot Stop Time

Your cat has dragged a dead bird onto the porch again.
Fragments of its dull wings still hang in the air, the real live
wind brings a cold rain up from the Sound. Your hands
are wet; time moves too fast. Things were easier earlier,
when the Snow Goose was open for business and the sun
lay its original light all up and down the Stillaguamish River.
Everything, now, is an interrogation. Why this bird? Why
this interruption, soaked to the bone? The river is still there—
steady and cunning with current. It does not answer,
but it loves the conversation; it is both the cat and the bird.
It is at once your body dissolved in this rain and your
beautiful wet hands trying to hold onto water.

The Barer the Bones

Centered in the streets
under clouds of miscalculation,
I’m taking off my creature-drapes
for the record. The primary
animal is not as upset as
the one we are told to be
(the electronics we are tied to—
our sudden lack of atmosphere).
Be a doll and get the door,
remove the cross from its hinges.
The mountains are all gone
around here, all done and gone,
even the sea is trapped in a plastic
bag stuck in a tree, some flawed
trash-bird we have made
of our own poor boredom.
Let’s go find the unusualness,
the great giant wonder,
the lasso that brought down
the last remaining metal mean.

Monday, March 08, 2010

May I Suggest Yellow?

Photo by Tim Limón at my stepmom's memorial February 27, 2010

When my stepmom was in her last few days, she said to me while she lie in bed..."May I suggest yellow?" She looked around the room and it seemed as if she was saying we should paint it. Or it was the color for "afterward." For after the leaving and after the grieving. There was first purple, then space, and then yellow. On Saturday I missed her. I was low and so I walked across the bridge into the city and suddenly found myself in a store that sells home-goods. A yellow bedspread and $500 later, I was home with a bunch of cut daffodils and a house that felt lighter. I've never really liked yellow. And now I have it everywhere in my room. It makes me happy. It's spring. It's defiant life. It's weeds in the sidewalk. It's weeds in the heart. C'mon weeds, I'm rooting for you.

Friday, March 05, 2010

Thanks, Universe, for Last Night, for Poetry...

Photo by Alex Battles

Last night was lovely. I read with Lindsay Turner and John Burnside. How wonderful. I had never heard John read, but I was familiar with his work. Beautiful, sad, Scottish poems. He introduced one like this, "There is nothing worse than being in love, and there is nothing worse than a Scot in love." A man after my own heart. Here's to poetry! Here's to the universe! Universe, I'm going to write you a poem.