#fullmoonsocial Penumbral Garments


Penumbral Garments

You turn your blonde head away from me

where I can still see the shadow on your cheek

My naked eye is always looking for your tender skin under all of those garments made in the east

the search for you is never tiresome as the loss we turn away from

or as weary as this pretending that you don’t have a dark side


Saproxylic (for Geoffrey Hill and Frank Miller)

Translations from the English



for Geoffrey Hill and Frank Miller

Spiders spill out of a storm struck oak
On the rim of my childhood’s forest.

Half buried mathematical sign
Of the world’s inequality.

We were walking it down to earth
When the wood gave way beneath us

And the honeycombed beetle wandered paths
Were pried open by a thousand things

Of furry mindlessness, lost hands scrambling
For their owners across the crumbling bark

Toward the drowned crown’s leaves’
Black and brown shadows. Who was the eleven

Year old boy, barely a root,
And who was the hundred ringed world widener

Downed by a bolt? Who jumped from bank to bank
The great Skunk River’s rimey surface?

Looking for a clue, we found it: a footprint
Filled with muddy rain

Through which we’d read the tread
Then swirl it with a stick and claim

Some understanding, though adulthood
Stared us in the face with…

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if i was eight and missing you missing me too

i always loved to write but i never really could but i do and you say i should


and you say i should sing a song that i can’t sing but i will because you hear more than sound


and you say you love everyone ive ever loved or love or who loves me because love loves wholly


and i open my arms to your entirety because that entirety made you you



and i live and die with your deaths and resurrections because i feel like i’ve been birthed or buried


and i know when you are far away because i am far away and afraid of the end of our eternity


and life has bigger things to see to than two stars who

look like



In One Second

I am waiting for forever to roll around

The Cardinals looking for shadows beneath clouds


Thunder starting low and miles away trying to catch up to light


Robins with red hearts beating in the dead veins of winter


The maple storing green rain to grow and branch into a million trees


Coffee going cold in my hand and the Crow on the power line laughing



Lakeshore Park in January

This first month of the year sits on the park bench like a boulder holding down a flower.


It watches me reach for life up through the Oak’s heavy arms.  Nothing but arms weighted down from being strong and they are gray with exhaustion.  No Crow,  no secret, no leaf to fall or rustle against a whisper.  Only the arms reaching down for me through the month’s dead mouth.


The Heron glides in with a blue that makes the gray beautiful and breaks the month’s spine,  vertebrate cracking and hushed as stone rolling off of flowers.  Something moves in the arms of the Oak and I lean my head against her chest to hear her breathe again.

River Crossing

All the stones are slippery every

single one holds no foot steady no

gait straight forward or tall no one erect


the wilderness perhaps is our feet

sliding out from beneath our

trunks flailing against all the odds flailing against loss


leaves flying in the wind scattered

above water’s reflection with

nothing to cling to nothing to see no one to see them fall

coffee a-brewing

the hour is slowly dragging its feet behind the second hand and gravity’s magnetism is and was and will be pulling the hands clockwise to a-tick- tick-ticking


the cars going by outside on the interstate forever north, forever south,  through the perpetual seasons changing color,  the cars  a-whir-whir-whirring


and the faucet coming from the endless sea and eternal waves, the fish there no one ever sees,  my bathroom faucet a-drip-drip-dripping


who cares it is an everyday occasion

that moves steadily forward that mocks my dying.

Commemorating His Rare Appearance




The Blue Snow goose is rare in these here parts the boy tells me.  Thinks he was brought over here cause of the early cold wind from Colorado,  maybe.  The hunter shot him down south of Atlanta in some Georgia pines near a swamp.  Birds were probably lookin for some water he says.  He will have him stuffed and hung on a plaque above his new  baby boy’s crib.  “Commemoratin’ his birth and all”.  He showed me a picture of the bird dangling from his hand and limp as any umbilical cord on the afterbirth.  He was a magnificent bird.

dog gift

The old dog sleeps in the bend of my waist.  Warm and secure.  Stillness in a silent dream.  Her breathing is consistent and relaxed.  She is in a state of unplay as our planning for Christmas is finally over but our planning for what is next has already begun.  Our human consistency is in digging up the ground looking for our buried bone while my old dog has learned that the hunt is only worth it if we learn to just keep warm in the bend of another living thing.