Hour #13 – Proprietary

She established her place,
surprised she didn’t shake.

Within she was a symphony of strings
vibrating, all in tune.

Her essence lifted,
correct and just,
in harmony with her being.

It all began with two drops,
multiplied itself exponentially.
Cogs fitting together,
all in unison.

She bowed her head just enough,
not to boast,
in gratitude to the rain.

Hour # 12 – Chaos

blunt, burned,
squeezed up out of chaos
plains streaked with ash
hollows dark and bitter

Broad between.

Here is more.

Sometimes redeeming essays
if you keep on long enough.

They are maddening.

Winds dance.
Earth cries.




Erasure poem from The Land of Little Rain by Mary Autsin

Hour #11 – My Dog Stares At Me



Friends call it “stink eye.”
He knows everything I think.
Rarely leaves my side.

It’s really not a stink eye
stare. Just love, just love, just love.


Hour # 10 – Keeping Watch

I didn’t cover the plants today
I trusted the weather report,
rain, just rain

Coffee mug in hand I kept watch
hail came after fog
clouds rolled by
wind pushed them out to the plains

Through rain streaked glass I kept watch
under the fir the squirrel waited
waited for the open door
waited for the chase to begin
But Benny doesn’t like rain

In the hush after the storm
I place my washed mug
back on the shelf next to St. Joseph
and turn on the TV


Hour #9 – Remarkable Creatures

You are, you know.
I just wanted to let you know
how you shine when you are you
how the world lights up in your presence
each blade of grass
every star system
that cell on the tip of your liver
all rejoice in you

Hour #8 – A Sevenling

Three appeared from the west
a crooked eye, a big nose, one complacent smile
they weren’t exactly ordained, at least not this way

There were hands, too
holding a sphere, another a rabbit, one hiding its pleasure
I wanted to hold them, at least one to calm my fears

You should never assume when anticipating antecedents




Hour #7 – Resurrection Fern

Pleopeltis polypodioides (syn. Polypodium polypodioides),
also known as the resurrection fern, is a species of creeping,
coarse-textured fern native to the Americas and Africa.

They braided seeds into their hair
not for show, but hidden,
not to be discovered,
bringing homeland with them
boarding ships they knew nothing of
crossing oceans never to return

Memories survive long periods
with just a little telling
to resurrect their life
to grow again through word spoken
to those who never knew

They arrived, some with star maps
from skies where once their feet
planted onto homeland
never to return, but remembered
through lines and dots, remembered
through scanning the night
for something familiar.

There is a wisdom,
a knowing in their actions
a way to preserve that which
would be lost, an honoring
for those to come connecting
those to the past.

I reach back to learn from where
my ancestors came, their
customs, their stories,
ritual, a part of my DNA
not realized

I know of
violas and sweet alyssum
bees tended and golden nectar
caravan travel spreading words to heal
salt thrown over one’s shoulder

She heard voices, saw ghosts
They said she was crazy
She didn’t know her homeland
she didn’t know her stories

I wish I could ask her now
I wish I could resurrect her
from the box inside the marbled
floor mausoleum
and our homeland

The resurrection fern gets its name because it can survive long
periods of drought…However, when just a little water is present,
the fern will uncurl and reopen, appearing to “resurrect”…

Hour #6 – Knock, Knock

Knock, Knock

a child’s game
silly rhymes that seldom do

you smile
allow their folly
someday they will make sense

knock, knock
who’s there?
I’m reaching for the key

someday I will make sense

meanwhile I stand
locked out

and watch the stars

Hour #5 – That Which Shall Not Be Named

I don’t do it.

I don’t know why
do I have any control
If can turn it on
turn it off

I do know          I        fear             it

after an operation
there was a wild ride on
a rollercoaster
rimming my room
not stopping
around and around                      around and around

around and around
I was on it and watching                                 at the same time
and it wouldn’t





IT               WOULDN’T             STOP

screams and blurring and hopelessness

I couldn’t stop it
even with my eyes open

a second operation
I warned them about the                  pill                  NO

They would have to find something else
They didn’t
So I took it

The room was dank
it smelled
it was small and dark
I didn’t know

I didn’t know

where               I              was

where I was

below my feet              at my toes
the carpet began to rise peel back curl revealing all sick colors that never made it onto a rainbow a hand a knife and blood screaming I couldn’t open my eyes I couldn’t open my eyes It wouldn’t stop

I warned them
they didn’t listen

I guess I do know why

I don’t do it
I don’t allow it

Hour #4 – Sugar Water

I didn’t know when I first grew monarchs
that they could eat fruit.
You would think that as a teacher
I would know this.
It was when I forgot the bag of sugar
to make sugar water that
I learned, as my first graders
worried of starvation and
ultimate death,
that more than just the belly
needs to be fed.

Do they not know
that soap and toothpaste
feed, not the belly,
but the health of a body?

Do they not know
that blankets
aren’t a weapon,
but feed the soul
longing for a mother’s touch?

Do they not know
glaring lights
that allow no night,
rob the soul
of the food of rest?

May they learn to
see more deeply
than just their
columns of numbers.

May they learn
the warmth of
a mother’s compassion
is for all, even them.

May they learn to
starve their fear
and open their wings
to fly beyond themselves
to see the precious life of all.