Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A Couch-Surfer's Prayer

Folgers and baloney sandwiches,
an air mattress in a crawl-space,
friends with futons;

cold pizza and cheap sleeping-bags,
stable and manger blessings: enough.


Saturday, November 15, 2014

Today We Go Fishing!

Hello God and good morning!
Today we are going fishing.
This is a special day you’ve made

from the first uninteresting nothing
(I’m glad you were not satisfied with that).

What a wonderful idea, stuff:
purple, suns, comets and swirly things
and infinite room.

First from nothing, then from dust,
with a smirk and a push the whole mess
sent spinning in and out
of place (another good idea,
things being here not there,
and the whole game of choosing).

Gravity and neighbors
pushing and pulling
colliding and creating
new bits and flavors.

The whole soup swirling
days unmeasured right
till this one, a special day—
a fishing day, and the only one
happening now.

Today the salmon come back home,
after years away. You brought them
back to the icy green waters,
the same chortling stream you raised them in.

It’s sheer loveliness, from the first to now.
Space-dust to salmon to me and coffee
writing to you on a special day.

Today we go fishing.
Today is the day you have made,

I am glad to be in it.

Friday, June 13, 2014


Let us build ourselves a city
with roof-top gardens and bike lanes,
clean streets and green condos; polite
progressives with indoor voices
faithfully paying down school debt,
unworried by history or context.

Let us make a name for ourselves
with college words and whitened teeth,
fitness apps and yoga: moderation;
without discord moving forward.
Fitter, happier, more productive

lest we be scattered amongst dissimilar
visions, opinions and politics. Hearing
other voices raised in obscenities,
reminding us of the unhappy
others deemed unfit for the city.

Let us make a tower
with sound-proof windows.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Poem for Angry Sunny-days

or Surprised by Folk Music and Grief

Warm days can feel sad.
Sunshine can shit on your soul,
birds sing sarcastic.

Familiar romantic problems drove me from my dark room. I ran angry. Under pedals and pollinators. Bright sun bounced off Burrard Inlet as kites were flown by packs of giggles. Spring flirted with t-shirt temperatures, and every house, apartment and condo in Vancouver emptied out into the parks and beaches. The city was a Chialis commercial. And I had the day off, but was spending it with melancholic folk music glaring at happiness. 

Grief takes sharp turns,
no sense of propriety.
holds heavy thoughts light.

Runs do their work. By the time my knee started complaining I was wearing a smirk. A toddler perched a-top a dad pointed at crows dropping mussels on the bike path. I stopped for a drink. Listening to folk singers groan farewells to lost loves, I surveyed the glad scene. I remembered taking my dad to see the Kingston Trio, his favorite folk band, by then playing with no original members. Best gift I ever gave him. My smirk turned to full smile. Sometimes I really wish my dad were still alive.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Simon at the Bar

As they were coming out, they found a man of Cyrene named Simon, whom they pressed into service to bear His cross.

I hope someone bought him a drink
if ever a man needed a double and some time
to let the pulse come-down and blood warm,
a breath and long moment to think. 

I hope people let him be,
to stew in the bigness. A change 
best viewed at the bottom of a tumbler;
meaning not understood but felt.

I hope he didn't rush to words,
left it in images, smells, and pains
still shooting from shoulder and neck--
undecorated, without ornament.

I hope someone bought him a drink
he let soak down to his toes
as flavors came out slow 
the questions took shape:

Friday, April 11, 2014

Cocaine and Writers Block

The barista is on cocaine
I’ve had writers block
for a year. Two maybe,
it’s been a while.

I don’t trust him, skin picked
and scabbed. Dishes whisked away
on jittery hands. He banters
with an aussie co-worker;  

sure in the moment—I envy him.