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Anger & Grief

November 22, 2017



What is anger?
The conflicting stories
and silences?
The moments blocked?

What is anger?
The empty spaces
where I turn away,

What is anger?
Is it this anticipation of loss:
the burnt-out remnants
of old miseries?



What is grief? Stumbling by haunted spaces
and turning away from your empty chair?
What is grief? The evening silences scratching
the scabs of your amputation from me?

Sackcloth and ashes pool behind my empty eyes
imprinting memories where your smile fades
Where is the  garden you have abandoned?
What song is playing as you pull away?

Bleakly I walk and walk on muddied paths.
My stories now lost; their endings destroyed.
All sunsets are grey; all voices not yours.
There’s nothing I want and nowhere to be.

Then comes my scalding tears in their scarring tracks:
a slow stinging that solaces me in this deadened time.


October 20, 2017


Only when I am finally and irrevocably
Do I sweep up my mistakes and
Bundle them into the oven where
I watch them shrivel and
And shrink.

I listen to their gasps and
And bathe in their
Arid aroma,
My head,

My heart hurting.


Compostable Dust

October 14, 2017
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I imagine death
socking me
as I change lanes,
my hair flying as
it did in my youthful dancing

I imagine death
dulling me
as I lounge
watching war and weather casualties
on the tv news

I imagine death
calling to surprise me
while I stretch in yoga class
earnestly trying to reach

I imagine death
as I count what years I have
possibly left
and know more deeply
that I am compostable dust.


My Body, My Mother

August 16, 2017

My body is my mother
And I don’t like her.
She’s getting old and fat.
I hide from her, ignore her
And frown at her clothes.
She doesn’t take care of herself.
She wants me to exercise her
And I don’t wanna.
She should take care of herself.
And not bother me.

My body is my mother
And I want to love her.
I want to feed her what she needs
And show her how to move and play.
It’s hard, but I need to feel her love.

August 6, 1945

August 6, 2017

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I was conceived before the atomic bomb, and born after it was dropped, after we humans gained the power to commit species suicide. I weep for those who died and suffered in Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, and Nagasaki on August 9, 1945.

Things Change

August 5, 2017

Many years ago, I had to take a course in Anglo-Saxon literature. It was intense because I was one of only 3 students so I couldn’t even skip occasionally – and I would have liked to. The only thing I remember from that course was this chorus from a long poem. As I remember it, (not according to the modern translation,) the poem was about feasting at the high table, followed by the chorus – 

“That passed away, so shall this.”

Later, another verse about being in the middle of a storm on the North Sea, followed, of course, by the chorus –

“That passed away, so shall this.”

When I think of the Biblical quote about there being a time for everything, or the Buddhist concept of impermanence, I remember the message of this Anglo-Saxon poem – everything changes; nothing stays the same.

Mothering God

August 3, 2017

Mary holding the crucified Jesus
After reading Sarah Bessey’s Out-of-Sorts

Imagine God offering Her breast, and feeling such relief, such joy, and such pleasure when I latch on;

Imagine the gaze of a smiling God, companionably putting Her arm around my shoulder and listening seriously to me;

Imagine God, whispering a question that unblocks my understanding and my heart;


Imagine God waiting for Her child’s tantrum to lessen, the pounding fists, the bites, the screaming;

Imagine God with yellowing dark bruises and browning bite-marks, patiently, hopefully rocking Her child;

Imagine God gently singing a lullaby to Her exhausting, exhausted child;


Imagine God in a coffeeshop hoping for Her cell to ring;

Imagine God wanting to listen and support me as my life bumps and flows along;

Imagine God watching the sparrows outside and then smiling as Her phone rings;