Hour Eighteen

Up on the mountain,
far beyond the foothills
where nimbus clouds hide the cliffs from sight,
meet me, darling.

Hour Seventeen

She came to me some months ago
28.6km – a short night flight
She wore a burnt orange shift
and found me at a white banquet table, on a white chair
She said, as she always did, “I love you, darlin’”

I woke up crying
White sheets in a white room

I went to her some weeks ago
28.6km – bad traffic on a Friday afternoon
She was so thin, ever silent but aware
in the “Cadillac of wheelchairs”
A regal edge in her upturned chin, stubborn glare

After an hour or so, she was taken to bed
I put my hand on her head,

She flinched.

Hour Sixteen

Have you stopped to look closely
at the rolled-out insides of a crushed squirrel?
I did the other day. They were pale red, a mess, mundane.
I would have lingered longer,
but for my companion.
She was impatient for lunch.

Hour Fourteen: Frog Proverbs

Eat your frogs so that by early evening you can delight in tomatoes, prepping them for winter in jars, the way gramma taught you. Together you sliced them, chasing the diced bits around the cutting boards like small children chase ducklings.

Take your raincoat, and venture into the time after the first summer rain, see how the streets steam and the evening light fills the rising. Don’t hesitate, the rain will come again and you will lose your window.

See your daughter’s dirty elbows and listen closely as she speaks of how the dirt came to coat them. Splash and laugh as you bathe her with warm soapy water before bed.

Eat your frogs so that you don’t feel you have stolen time from work to live. Then, you will be able to rest awhile. Your life will be made by these tiny moments.

Hour Thirteen

Enjoy this fantastic morning. The sun hits the lake just so and sets it sparkling. Never forget it, though the zoos overrun their gates, roaring, and the crops cannot support our devouring. Death’s at an end.

Hour Twelve

So glad you are here
– The hideout of my life,
still waiting on the day

Not sure what you did
– The hideout of my world,
a little sad

The night we would have
– The hideout, the dawn light,
the night is the only way

And in that world there would be two suns, setting in two-step.

NB: Written ad lib using predictive text on my iPhone and then edited for a semblance of sense.

Hour Eleven

I am more fully alive in the heat of this fire!
Much was learned, hard fought, lost.

I run alone for a prize foolhardy
I go alone to the lavish trees
I race, cramp, hardly breathe
I sink beneath branches green

And what is it you would have me do?
Come back, penitent, to you.

Hour Ten

Hazel eyes, flashes of fire
Precious time, green and gold
In blackest night he said
“I pray, things happen,

that’s all I know.”

Your hazel eyes flash with fire
And she’s caught in between in red
I’ll say precious little,
but “just so you know,

this one I won’t regret.”

Hour Nine

If I write it
it will come,
tingle at my forehead,
crawl over my ear.
These days
I walk calmly from the room
I don’t run from

the miniscule body of great fear.