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Evening Meadow

Small towns are held together
by petty strings webbed across
tree-lined streets. The luckiest,
like me, live at the edge of town
and can walk away.
Tonight, past yards, fields,
the farmhouse shrine to Mary,
barns, horses, then the meadow
where one white hawk glides.
Beyond him, one white plane
glints in late sun, with his thin
white contrail following like shadow.
Beyond them, half moon against
The dinner time blue sky.
White statue,
White hawk,
White plane,
White moon, keeping company
with the meadow and me, while I walk
till my feet and my eyes
remind me how to breathe
so I can turn toward town
ready to love it again.

Memorial Day

I never survived anything like war
Not even a single, ruthless battle.
Instead, this whole cold holiday
Spent sick in bed, those battle-earned
Hours squandered on sleep.
This year, the day’s miracle is sunlight
Filigree of tree shadows through lace curtains,
Peace in the streets,
My lap full of oranges and poems.
Grateful, grateful to be here and free
In a place where gratitude is personal,
This tiny town,
Where the War Memorial is etched
With names they remember
With names they know by heart.

Benediction For My Town

Tonight my town
sleep nestled in your hills
blanketed by stars.
Dream of the sweetness
that walks through
your streets —
all I love about
this small town:
Friendly dogs, flowering yards,
neighbors who wave
and call out to each other, sidewalk visits.
For background music, the high school
band practices as they march and
Listen–cheers from the ball field where
tonight is t-ball and small,
small children eating hot dogs
and learning the rules of the game
while crowds cheer them on
and then take them out for ice cream.


Burn for Now—
All these plans built
With dollars and curtains,
Chicken dinners and sensible cars,
Changing light bulbs, going to a job—

The ghosts hidden in old photo
Albums, jewelry boxes, dishes
In your cupboard,

And that invisible future
Painted on the inside of your forehead—
Burn that, too.

Burn the whole house of yourself.
Stand still in the charred doorway
All that’s left of your proud life.
Rubble of all that didn’t work out.

Leave these smoldering ruins
Step forward.
Feel how light
When there’s nothing left to

Broken Home

For the month of April, to mark International Poetry Month, I’m trying to write a daily poem in response to someone else’ s prompt instead of  writing about whatever wanders into my head that day.  It’s hard, weird, and interesting, all at once.  The prompts I’m using are posted by Robert Brewer on his inspiring blog, Poetic Asides.  Today’s prompt: write a broke poem.

I let everything in our house
Stay broken for you.

I left everything
In our house
For you

Now that you’re gone,
Like springtime arrives this year,
Broken latches,
Broken railings,
Broken chairs,
Are cured.
I fix them
Make dinner
Make a poem
Make a home.

The Novel Bunch

aka: The Happy Bookers

Red Wolf Prompts

I came to where you were living, up a stair. There was no one there.--John Ashberry, "The New Higher"

typewriter rodeo

custom poems on vintage typewriters

A Poet in Time

One Poet's Writing Practice

Writing the Day

A Ronka Poetry Practice Since 2014

Invisible Horse

Living in the moment

Leaf & Twig

Where observation and imagination meet nature in poetry.