Stripping

Stripping

    Like a benediction, we grow into a smaller language. So many words given up, disremembered, abandoned from tents & saw packs. What use here in the Middle Santiam Wilderness do we have for the word sink? When would we ever utter closet or phone or bank...
Necessity

Necessity

              When I worked in an orphanage a boy           came to harvest sugar cane in what           he’d worn to work the street at a beach resort.           His bunkmates picked up volcanic rock           I later learned geologists call scoria—a word...
Not Huron or Michigan

Not Huron or Michigan

              If your wife hates you           don’t go out and get another one,           it’s probably not your fault anyway           unless you put too many oranges in the bowl           and were only supposed to place two.           Still, she probably can’t...
This Morning in Nebraska

This Morning in Nebraska

          The corn has stopped whispering, “Rise,”           and waits in silence for high clouds to bend in rain.                                  Across the highway, soybean bushes crouch                                like green dogs wolfing bowls of earth.  ...
My Portrait, Painted by Renée at Indiana University in 1985

My Portrait, Painted by Renée at Indiana University in 1985

              Back when I was worse than harmless, she loved me, I think,           after I’d spent six weeks disintegrating             myself all over her floor.  But who wouldn’t pity such sorry           trade goods? Great stuff! I’d insist, an agent  ...
Coyote Aubade

Coyote Aubade

              I don’t remember the coyote           or how I woke here           not remembering my body           or the shape that your hand           left inside me. Desire           on the nightstand           like an empty claw           and the candle...
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