Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Sonnet #286

Catkins, cattails, cats and kittens, will all,

bob and bounce and beckon to be tugged,
And not a one respects the lines we plugged
into our maps, just wind and the passing fall
of weather in the streets of spring's ripening
I know the familiar dances of the season
I watch the sky for sudden storms and reasons
to wear a raincoat, listen for the cats that sing
Because there will be waves of cats, pouring
up from all the cracks and hidden places
Among the reeds and long grasses, scouring
every little living hole, every tussock, these vast races
That scurry and bob and dance and their soaring
The wild, unkempt grass - that beautiful long grass

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Sonnet #285

Here comes the wind, again, the howling blowing off

The harbinger of it is this rushing pushing flushing
That punches all the palm trees, knocksbranches and brushing
the forgotten nuts and fruits and leaves, hats will doff

One way or another: pay respects and bow if only
To collect the loose papers and lost scarves
I have seen the signs: two eyes burning, a close shave
On the early morning hours, the sirens withholding

A white heron stands in the storm drain runoff
Hunting where no fish are found, just trash
And sometimes toads awake too soon and lost,
The green algae and bracken will not last
But that is what is left, and where I stand, too
The great white bird of me, sunk into 

Friday, January 18, 2019

Sonnet #284

I take great comfort in your indifference, fair reader,
How I am shivering as much to myself as to you,
And nothing that I bluster will last much longer
Than the wind it took to breathe these words through

The letters on this page will keep for no one
The letters on my tombstone will moss and fade
The only future spirit of me is not the glory of the blade
Or the wisdom of the pen, only the echo of what I've sewn

It will not be attributed to me, this echo, but it moves
where my hands move, following the spirit of the hawks
That hover where all the birdfeeders are, the waves
that crash the shellfish, crush them open and seagulls walk
among the shells devouring; all the brave
stumble, no courage here, just wind in the cornstalks

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Sonnet #283

On the ceiling of the world, a jumping spider leaps
From stone to stone, alone, to hunt the blown
things, the wind carries bugs up too far, they're thrown
into the ice and rocks where these spiders creep;

Let's say that means, the highest things, above all
biomes, above all ecosystems, above all of us
the spiders, alone rule, they march among the rust
colored and wind-blasted and sunbleached and snowfalls

Victory is theirs, dominion is all theirs, untouched
by predators except each other, I assume, they rule
this kingdom mercifully, ignoring all the lesser wretches
Only taking offerings of the Aeolians songs, only cruel
Where they can be bothered to extend their royal reach
The rest of all their kingdoms permitted to be so, below.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Sonnet #282

Church is where we go to imagine who we are
I think, perhaps, we have gotten busy worrying
About imagining  who other people are, burying
Our consideration in the mess, forgetting stars
Exist without concern for who observes them—burn
With consequence, turn slowly into black ice—
And the words of a book will never splice
The distance between all things; but it turns
in a little, makes us remember stories
That carry other stories that carry others
And echo into us the silence at the heart of stories
The vast, beating darkness that made mothers
And will strip away the bothersome noise of stories
Of moments in this moment; a steam, a rudder

Friday, January 4, 2019

Sonnet #281

The pomegranate trees believe in spring so much

They burst with any sign of turn in weather
Not me. I know the cold will come to touch, 
another hard wind, another long night, down feathers
piled upon down feathers, a faucet dripping
And in the morning, when the sun wakes up
the warmth will remind us of a dream of spring
But, not yet. Go back to sleep. This is night's cup
to drink away the darkness, and grow no leaves
This is the cynical hour, the misery hour, the late,
late hour, where every gesture of the daylight flees
when damp, wet air coughs storms, wait, and wait

Pomegranate trees, burned again, will never yield
Spring is ever in their branches -- again, they unpeel