Friday, August 28, 2015


"Map with Ship," artist unknown, via Smithsonian Magazine

An airplane will skim the air like a flat stone, city to city.
We will be on it, in it, tiny limpets clinging to the stone.
An automobile will contain its small, smelly explosions
and nudge towards us, then open its doors, take us in.
We will be in it, then coughed up and out, undigested.
A building will lazily open its glass mouth; we’ll drift in.
We’ll sleep in its breath until morning, when it will yawn
and exhale us, tumble us through the wind to the edge
of a ship, to the edge of the sea, to await our passage.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


Dust plume off the Canary Islands, by NASA

The wind makes neighbors of us all—music
from dry streets tamped by strangers’ feet,
from campsite radios, faint but overheard in
those Aeolian processes that lift a veil of dust
in North Africa, trailing gossamer above clouds
until sifting down, powdering the scrub oak in
Texas. Ash from wildfires lifts from the east,
stains our lungs west. Crackling alveoli, rales,
rhonchi sing overtones with each exhale: jet
streams kiss our mouths—a canebreak syrinx.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Cape May

Image from Google Maps.

We spent the whole day at the shore, sitting
on the seawall from sunrise to sundown, the
tide moving out then back in, as if it had to
run an errand mid-day. At low tide, we both
scrambled down the concrete ledge to look
for treasure: dull polished bottle-glass gems,
broken clamshells scoured to fit our fingers,
a chipped teacup half-buried in wet sand.
Later, at night, on the thin hotel room bed,
I felt the waves still moving within my body,
lulling me to sleep, carrying me out to sea.

Sunday, August 09, 2015


Frank Carey, Fort Union Cistern, 2011

It’s a dry season. My love, that limestone cistern
can’t store enough to see us through—there’s a
hairline crack, and it’s seeping. Frogs pluck songs
from mud near the crack, soft plectrum chirps,
singing “Cheer-up, cheer-up,” but I just can’t. I’ve
watched the sun beat them down into deep burrows,
turn what’s moist into a brittle tomb. Even snakes
are leaving, exits marked by acrid, cursive trails. It’s
a dry season, and it won’t end—the only thing left
is to walk through scrubland, to the edge of the sea.

Sunday, August 02, 2015


The redbirds chit as they chase overhead—
dun-blush girl, blazoned boy. I was up before
they were, scuffling by a harvestman legging
his way (home? to hide?) and listening to my
breath. A jay, a jay yells and drops a feather
at my feet, then laughs: “Made you look!” To
begin under an ink-stained moon as crickets
and peepers shimmer, to end sweat-soaked,
breathless in gold light? Dayenu, surfeit of joy.