Leaf Fall



Somewhere, not here

A field lies open,

Unframed, without

Mind, as if lost,

Waiting on ritual.


In Increments,

I have changed.

Each day dawns

Into itself;

There is no other.


Hear, and here

As well, I

Still seek

Her across

These echoes:


She followed

A fragile winter

Ice across a lake.

I am cold; the wood

Grown dark.


(October 30, 2018)



The young girl thinks

constantly of the proper

manner to serve

a volleyball true.


The smack-smack

of leather against

the polished wood floor

dominates and supersedes


the hard-lined proofs

of geometry; the arc

and vector, with

the slightest bump,


returns her to the game’s

concrete abstractions.


(September 19, 2018)



There is less to do,

less to talk about now.

Where do I lay

my belief like a sack

full of rocks? When

do I shuck off

the tired traces

and stand unburdened?


There is no where

to go, but here–

and finally I have come

to a place I have

always been unknown,

a place that is mine.


(September 18, 2018)

Only Traces Remain



The sadness in the open rose

falls like petals to the path,

while you are somewhere else,

and I am nowhere near.

I hold on to the shreds

as a cicada’s husk

to a tree still clings

to a life not its own.

All maps are tattered

to an unstable memory–

which forms and reforms

until a landscape adheres.

Slowly I have fallen onto

a shapeless and empty road.


(September 15, 2018)


I Sit Beneath a Calder


–Chicago Art Institute, July 13


slow shapes turn about

each other as they turn

together through larger

fluidic constraints


the whole turns slower

partly to the left until

a  pause then moves

in a manner to the right


others speaking Japanese

move through the space pause

take a picture and move on


changing the room’s rhythm

which changes the slow shapes’

turn about each other and me

History’s Ground’s in the Dead



Thus another pattern

is laid into a palimpsest,

like cities built on cities.

New iterations of schemata

entangle with the old.

Roots strangle roots

turning paths away

from any intention’s form.


The urgent surge searches,

like blind fingers flutter

across dead faces,

invoking ghosts to rise

darkly, to saturate the air

with earthy thickness.


(May 28, 2018)




I write into the fissures

which slip across my façade

like ice cracking in early

spring rivers. Nothing’s fixed,

but changed.  A broken cup

is still broken. Like now,

after years of sadness

inscribed into my skin,


I’m still who I was at ten,

but changed. Each line I write,

each word, fits another bit

into the kaleidoscope’s mosaic.

Each moment becomes a whole,

before fracturing to reform again.


(May 22, 2018)

My Life a Broken Gun



“without—the power to die”

–Emily Dickinson


An ephemera scattered

like thoughts in dreams;

I am no longer subject.

I am object,

acted upon— chaff

allowed to fall,


indistinguishable from dust.


Yet, I must respond,

must go on.

Despite dysfunction,

despite predicate’s lack,

I stand here

to mark an empty space.




I look to a mirror

And see I am old,

Balding, skin dry,

My beard greyed.


The skin of my hands

Has thinned like plys

Of ice on water, early

Winter mornings.


I first read this poem

My class read today

Forty years ago, when,

Like them, I still believed.


I am old; there is no

Resolution to this poem.


(February 27, 2018)



the unknown’s always vast





I take off my glasses

and cannot see

with any clarity

more than a little way


my vision’s weak

but sufficient

to navigate within

these blurred horizons


as with any truth

only what’s near

coheres enough

to provide shape


even so few know

the heart close by


(February 13, 2018)