Thursday, December 24, 2009

there's gonna be a party when the Wolf comes home.

I love my mom. I love my dad. I love my grandmother and grandfather and uncle and ryan, aran, laurel, nina, amanda, jennifer and all the babies who will also one day make it on my love list.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

cold was the ground.

A certain friend of ours pointed my head in the direction of a compilation album entitled, Dark Was the Night. Now, I didn`t really know how I felt about compilation albums that weren`t classified as soundtracks, but, fortunately, I was gifted, and began to listen.
Even though I prefer Blind Willie Johnson`s original title to the Kronos Quartet`s; I suppose their efforts would make him proud.
But mostly, on part 2 of the 2 disc compilation, I found myself watching our mice crawling upside down on the roof of their cage and replaying Stuart Murdoch's (think Belle & Sebastian) "Another Saturday" quite regularly during my six-am-just-before-dawn car drives.
Here are some of my favorite words from his song:
Look ahead with hope and cheer (Look ahead with hope)
Look ahead with blazing spirits
'Cause the One that made us wants us to spread joy amongst the living
And though times may be hard (Times, they may be hard)
And the week behind was painful
He won't ask us to shoulder a weight too much to carry on another Saturday

I have heard that His yoke is easy, and perhaps a burden that is a little bit lighter than we`d prefer to carry.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

on raining outside.

since it was raining outside to night, i got to use my windshield wipers for the first time in a long time.
&as i waited for the stoplight to change colors, i just sort of stared at the blades going swish, swash, back and forth. and it was kind of peaceful in a peculiar way.
now i don`t know if it was because i had an umbrella, or the lights downtown looked unusually hopeful, or that brian is coming back soon, or that i am getting out of here next week, or just that the garbage bag nintendo man was having so much fun. but whatever it was, it felt good. good enough to put on a quotable coffee mug if my "good" could be verbalized. i keep telling myself i`m waiting for something really big and great to happen.
may be this is it.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

while we are still humans.

first off, it`s good to know you are still real.
secondly, please don`t be sad any more. we love you!
lastly, even though i am a better listener than them, thanks for always being willing.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

on some thing a long time ago.

"For God is not a God of confusion but of peace." -14:33.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

on long, dusty roads.

we can make time for the what that matters.

Friday, November 13, 2009

water babys

It`s hard to believe
that you are coming
home after a day
at the lake.
Your cheeks swollen red,
your tiny fists sticky
&grabby for my
snarling hair;
your lips pucker &
eyes squeezed tight
taking a lion-sized

It`s hard to believe
you have only been
here for 377 days; a
little sunlight, a
little rain, a little rest,
&hours of anxious nights:
I spy your papa in the
corner there--proud of
his accomplishments,
the feats of that day.

So, whisking you upwards
and releasing you to the sky;
I wait for your
heart to fall back in
to my rocking-chaired arms.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I am ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready ready.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

on saying sorry

some times you have to listen just
a little bit harder when he talks
about the things that really matter

to make up for awkward silences,
crossed grumblings, &
ransacked raviolis.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

on not having any immediate plans.

i have calculated the approximate time it
takes for me to accomplish each day's needs.
but to be quite honest with the world,
i haven`t thought much further than the edge of my nose.

&i have heard that it is okay to live like this:
wearing socks a little too big, taking steps small & just right,
hours of darkness and bright to think about tomorrows.
still, there is a hope on that ever-growing horizon.

we breathe in each morning, exhaling the night.
&oh, i have so much to learn!
but, take heart--with each half-eaten moon rise, each light we save:
there is plenty of time.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

I am tired. I am true of heart!
You are tired. You are true of heart!

Friday, October 9, 2009

on getting dark outside.

it is cooler at night than it has been in september or august or july.
and it has been too long since i have held your hands in mine
or felt the brush of your bones in passing
or blinked my lips to catch yours.
oh, dear.

our seasons' changing blows in more than just frozen wind.

Friday, October 2, 2009

on letting go.

some times my heart is too gentle for me to bear.
is that even possible?

Sunday, September 27, 2009

All the Pretty Horses.

Since it took me so long to actually get to this book, &even longer to read it, I figured that I would give you an honest, yet humble review.
I suppose my favorite thing about this book was that it took me a while to break it in. Or it took a while to break me in. Western fiction is not a genre I have any particular affinity for, and there is plenty of other literature in the world for me to sit around with. So, even though the book came highly recommended from a reputable source, I would be lying if I said I wasn't mostly intrigued by the cover.
McCarthy's mastery of style, however, could not be ignored, and luckily, like a green colt, I was broken in after about sixty pages. The poignancy of McCarthy's diction, the structured coherence of his characters, and his overall knowledge of the craft made this novel worth taking a little more time on.
Here is my favorite passage in the book; it's on page 135.
She watched him, not unkindly. She smiled. Scars have the strange power to remind us that our past is real. The events that cause them can never be forgotten, can they?

Find this book and read it. There's some caballos in it, too.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

on standing still.

"knowing well that those that know don`t talk & those that talk don`t know."

Sunday, September 20, 2009

i still have

the scars on my knees reminding me that we are not immortal,
dragging patellas under water over painted concrete,
weary sun bathers resting in shade.

orange picking in the groves about a half mile from your house,
stretching on tip toes with pulp-stained fingers
cows watching lazily in the summer field.

quiet sunday afternoons for hushed whisperings of conversation,
falling asleep under the table, dreams of moving back home--
it`s not such a bad place.

bare-footed evening lopings through the vineyard,
your hand in mind, letting go to check on the Chasselas or Gamay or Petit Rogue
running back towards the trail, flashlights in hand,
zig-zagging slices of light.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

on thistles

there are birds out of doors right now. i don`t know how many. i don`t know what kind.
but they are singing up a storm.

i can learn from that.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

on happy meal toys.

so, there`s some thing sweet about a boy who will pretend to be your dad and ask the drive-thru which beanie babies are available.
&there`s some thing even sweeter about a back seat rider leaning her head out the window and laughing till it hurts.
but the sweetest thing of all is the one behind you; the one who rolls the eyes & says, "just be sure to pay me back."
well i know that with one hand wrapped around a dripping 89-cent-cone and the other clutching my immature pride,
i could never really pay you back.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

&i counted all your fingers
and i counted all your toes
just to make you sure you had not lost any since the time i had seen you last.
you held my claws gingerly, showing me around like i was some mute wild thing
unaware of my own strength and unable to control it.
&we nearly made it: up all those crossed and crooked streets, crumbling stairways, wooden books.
for a couple of hours my mouth opened up,

&i could see.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

away he goes.

i`m still here.
miss you.
love you.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Saturday, August 15, 2009

two odd ducks

i won`t tell you that i know more people than i think i do.
or that my grandpa`s violin has been carelessly stowed in the guest bedroom for over 4 years now.
you`ll never get me to slip that i hurt &ache &find joy just like the next person does.
but i will confess that i do feel, i do fight, &i`m not certain of what happens next.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

on days.

there are some times when fresh air is just the ticket to the wisconsin family`s much-anticipated annual vacation
& the smell of chlorine and hot-tubs, lion paws &duck landings, barely brushing the backside of water reminds me that to be antsy is to be alive
and to be alive is to feel
and feeling is hurting inside your innards,
flying past framed photographs,
still wondering what you could be.

Friday, July 31, 2009

on having enough time

"&indeed there will be time
For the yellow smoke that slides along the street,
Rubbing its back upon the window-panes;
There will be time, there will be time
To prepare a face to meet the faces that you meet;
There will be time to murder &create,
&time for all the works and days of hands
That lift and drop a question on your plate;
Time for you &time for me,
&time yet for a hundred indecisions,
&for a hundred visions and revisions,
Before the taking of a toast &tea."

Sunday, July 26, 2009

on softness

it`s not that i hate children. i really don`t.
but i`ve had my fair share of experiences with them. some times i really just get them. other times...well, we could say that i`m in no rush to "own" any, any time soon, at least.
but i will say that there are some mornings when a little boy wearing superman pajamas, pushing a miniature plastic grocery cart down the sidewalk, papa &sis in tow, and some fairy-headed sprite who insisted on wearing a tutu over her church clothes are just enough of a reminder that we are not so different as i some times think.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

on sympathy.

she was still small enough to stand on tip-toes to reach the marbled table top,
to dine on macaroni elbows
to rear end some one at a stop light and
to push carts around at the local Kelley's I.G.A.

to runrunrun,
to buy a gun
&float off on some pistol dreams,
a long time.

forgive them.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


indeed, it is a rare day that i do not thank Jesus for you.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


droplets form on the freshly sliced cucumber`s edges, &i dip them in ranch because it`s my worldview, even though my sister is allergic to it &gets red rashes around her lips when the chicken nuggets are over-exuberantly dipped.
&i did see you walking on the sidewalk, looking smugly sheepish grasping that pink-striped bag in your left hand, most likely wandering home to its eager recipient, or maybe the gesture is not that sweet, but it is only a wednesday, and i like to think we save most of our sinnings for the week`s end.

Friday, July 3, 2009

but it`s okay.

i am learning that there`s not much more to living than fire works, baseball, soda pop, &conducting the chorus.

Monday, June 29, 2009

on crowding.

i could really go for some mint swirl right about now.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

on being brave.

there are some days that i am big enough to withstand divorces, full meals, bone cancer.
&then there are other days where i wish i could curl up &be covered again.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

away we go

the side walks were all ready too full of plastic chairs, blankets, &masking tape for any sun god to appreciate, but we tread down them any way
to a small restaurant where i have my own favorite spot.

b: "she likes to sit in that little nook." [it`s true]

a: "i really like thai tea."
b: "i really like sushi." [gestures to his alaskan roll]
a: "me too!" [dips my avocado roll in to some soy sauce]
b: "but that`s not sushi."
a: "i know."

Thursday, June 18, 2009

on mattering


passed 6th grade
(on to 7th grade.)

oh, the importance of graduations.

Monday, June 15, 2009

timothy hay

"cold December, just after dusk
as the sun bid its cordial goodbyes
we get split to pieces like an apple core husk to reveal the tree that`s been hidden inside
we`re a sapling caught in a tattered sirah at the seams from the shepherd`s purse-belt
broke the news to mom: we found a better Mom we call "God" (which she took quite well)

what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God there must be!
what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God there must be!
what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God there must be!
what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God, what a beautiful God You must be!"
-a. weiss

Friday, June 12, 2009

on not being very good at waiting

i am a sucker when it comes to the waiting game. lately though, it seems to be occurring more often than i care to admit. see, i'm not very good at being patient; with my family, that boy, or my friends. it makes sense then that this "virtue" is what i`d be plagued in to dealing with. & yet i`m still stuck here, ignoring the background noise of the jonas brothers live in central park.
i`m trying to be positive, but it`s been over a week, it`s friday, &i`m still here.

regardless, i overhear a middle-aged man confess: "we just got married not too long ago, and she doesn`t really like flying alone."

tender, truth, &twenty years over due.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

magic vs. lake(r)s

reasons why orlando beats los angeles,
a list by arianna nelson.

1. magic beats every thing. even the natural world.
2. the lakers have already won 14 playoffs [los angeles/minneapolis]
3. shaquille o'neal [kazaam, anyone?]
4. kobe bryant, pau gasol, & sun yue [where has he even been?!]
5. jackson's got enough wins under his belt, let`s give van gundy a chance [wouldn`t hurt to have more than an eastern conference to show the kids]
6. if nothing else, let`s do it for jameer

Sunday, May 24, 2009

eert sgorf.

I`m not quite certain how many know about love. Okay, not love, but love. I mean the doesn`t make any sense, confusing, crystal, hurting, freeing sort of love that can happen when someone loves you back. And the sky could rain for years if it meant there`d be no way to muddle back home if that`s what it took.

But that`s not what I mean to say, really. What I mean to say is this. Love is curious. In the words of someone some one else knows, "it is one of the things I am most curious about." No, no, no. Love hurts. At worst, you harm them. At best, they sabotage you. They trick you so you fall &you`ll be damned if there`s any way out of it.

What to do:
Some times it is best to hold on tight, tight, tightly. To press them up against your heart &hold them there until their ragged breathing turns to match the shallow beating of your own.
Other times you hold them close, press your foreheads together for a while &let go.
Some times they do not come back.
But some times they do.

I have heard that tenderness often goes underestimated in this world. I have heard that the faithfull are few and far between. I have let go & held on, loving poorly. Slowly, I have learned the art of ferocious love, defeating and redeeming gentleness.
"You are a fighter," he says knowingly. Perhaps I am. For now, or when the time calls for such a ferocity. Like a lion cub baring her little pin-point teeth, pouncing in the grass. In every blade of grass...

But one day I will hold those bones so tightly, till the beats match, and press foreheads together. Then I will let go.

&love you back.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

we are not sexy or beautiful or rich,
but we are cute.
we are good and we are simple
&we are pure.

we know how many balls are in a strike
strikes outs, hits runs.

corra casa.

Friday, May 15, 2009

on eating old birthday cake.

"i know i`m not sposed to miss you guys like this: rubbing two stones together in my hands, between my fingers before throwing them out, out, out into the water of a made-up lake. and i know it`s only been a few hours since i`ve been standing here, toes on the shore`s lines; close enough, but not quite enough to feel the water`s quiet tongues gently lapping. but to just all sit around for a few years, living off of old birthday cake and lukewarm water, dying tulips &penciled-in cows..."

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Monday, May 4, 2009

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

amateur cartography.

he held my face in his hands like a first-time explorer grips the page:
turning it this way &that, up &down, read it left to right.
he followed the lines with his fingers
to the corners of my grinning cheeks &crinkled eyes.
stared intently into the newly formed lakes,
hot brown on soggy paper.
sighed, marked the spot with red marker and
gently started to crumple the map.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

little bird.
any one only knows the girl
with the wrist-watch
punch-stained lips.


it`s quite possible
she`s a
than that.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Thought-Fox

I imagine this midnight moment`s forest:
Something else is alive
Beside the clock`s loneliness
And this blank page where my fingers move.

Through the window I see no star:
Something more near
Though deeper within darkness
Is entering the loneliness:

Cold, delicately as the dark snow
A fox`s nose touches twig, leaf;
Two eyes serve a movement, that now
And again now, and now, and now

Sets neat prints into the snow
Between trees, and warily a lame
Shadow lags by stump and in hollow
Of a body that is bold to come

Across clearings, an eye,
A widening deepening greenness,
Brilliantly, concentratedly,
Coming about its own business

Till, with a sudden sharp hot stink of fox,
It enters the dark hole of the head,
The window is starless still; the clock ticks,
The page is printed.

-Ted Hughes.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

the trouble with apologising

is this:
he was walking along-
side the road, kicking up
with every step,
holding a bouquet
of home-
redred roses
to bring back
to his wife,
whom he has known for at least
who wears a gold band on her left hand,
even when she scrubs soapy spoons.
Who, truthfully, have been very good to each other.
they`re getting a little tired of being so good.

Monday, March 30, 2009

"i'm gonna float up in the ceiling;
i built a levee of the stars,
and in my field of tired horses
i built a freeway through this farce.

well, if i ever get that slumber
i`ll be that mole deep in the ground,
&i won`t be found."

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

heavy boots.

they said he was in the air.
mom said she held his hands.
dad said he`s ready to go.
it takes about 3 days total, i think.

i say he knows more than we ever will.

Monday, March 23, 2009

black lamb

“I remember the jeans I was wearing the afternoon you bruised my heart. How I could peer over my denim hearted knees into the watery oblivion just feet below my dangling laces. I remember your honestly ambiguous words and I wondered if even you knew what your mouth was saying. How that fisherman’s hairy forearm could have canvassed an anchor or at least an “I love Mom” tattoo, but it didn’t. I remember the sky growing darker as you attached a feathered lure to my heart, plopped it into the ocean and fumbled to grab the reel carelessly propped at the edge of the pier. How easily it fell over and how lazily you watched it fall! I remember how you said I could push you in, the same way you did to me, but different. How I haven’t quite taken you up on that yet. I remember you said something about your dad dying, how you needed time to figure life out. I remember that I promised to wait. How you didn’t want me to. I remember asking to hold your hand before we left. How homesick I felt that night. I remember feeling sorry for myself; refusing forgiveness. ‘How he deserves it!’ I thought. I remember walking around Florida in one afternoon, kissing every piece I ever cursed. How much of life I have taken for granted. I remember noticing someone new for the first time in a long time. How hopefull a heart half-healed can be.”

Friday, March 20, 2009


at one point the light in your
&the light in my
met, just for a few seconds,

bought me a taco,
tossed me in the grass,
rubbed my belly


Friday, March 6, 2009

soda water

You loved her better than he ever could,
resting my ear quietly on your boyish chest,
counting off the beats: (onetwo, onetwo)
of your well-tempered heart.

Pairing blades of grass:
(onetwo, onetwo,)
greens & yellows.
I am sorry for this.

For hurting you with
innocent onetwos, and lazy waltzes
over your papa`s hard-wooded floor,
tapping out the beat with
bare feet--
care full of toes,

One day we will walk back to
the same home together,
counting off our steps in

&write our own lazy waltzes,
in the carpeted cozy of very own living rooms,
not so care full any more of




Tuesday, March 3, 2009


When I was younger, I used to have night terrors. You know, those sneaky, scary, terrifying thoughts that creep into your head after the sun sets down. I don`t think I was able to have sleep over parties away from home until I was about twelve. This one time, my mom came and picked me up around 11pm, because I "wanted to sleep in my own bed." Really I just wanted her. Eventually though, all little girls grow up. &I wasn`t so afraid of sleepovers any more. So much so that I decided to invite myself to a 4 year one. And, mostly, I'm not so afraid. But sometimes, on occasion, I wake up from a night terror. &right then I wish I could ask Mrs. SoandSo to call my mom to come pick me up. But then I remember it would take a few days for her to get here.
I know you`re tired of being alone; you`ll be safe with me.
So I lie back down &wait for the morning.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

as i walked out one evening.

"O look, look in the mirror,
O look in your distress;
Life remains a blessing
Although you cannot bless.

"O stand, stand at the window
As the tears scald and start;
You shall love your crooked neighbour
With your crooked heart."

It was late, late in the evening,
The lovers they were gone;
The clocks had ceased their chiming
And the deep river ran on.
-W. H. Auden

Friday, February 20, 2009


There was a time in my life when I wrote about my heart's laments in a black, hard bound journal.
I also had a special [non-blogger] blog that held all my adolescent secrets.
But, I'm getting ahead of myself.
Maybe they were secret, but that certainly didn`t mean I didn`t want them to be found. In fact, if I'm honest with myself, if I didn`t want something to be found, why would I have put it on the internet?! Just think about it.
Any way.
I got pretty good at posting cryptic messages about the boys in my life. Or should I say, the boys [I wished were] in my life.
But one in particular had really caught my eye. Nathen with an "e" not an "a" wore a dress shirt and tie to school every day of the 10th grade. Because he "didn`t want to buy uniform shirts, &this was my only option."
What a guy.
Didn`t matter that I was a year older. He was way out of my league.
So in my little online journal, I would practice writing letters that I would never send to this counter-cultured 16 year old.
Fast forward to 5 years later, &through some smiling of the gods, Nathen &I have developed a friendship of sorts. It mostly involves a bi-annual 20 minute phone call, and a few letters here &there. Nothing too demanding. Nothing too promising.
He`ll probably grow up to be some big, hot-shot lawyer somewhere; &I`ll probably be making money writing cryptic poems about him. [I`ve found out I`m pretty good at lying when I write. But I heard they`re calling it fiction nowadays.]
So, if you happen to stumble across a poem that has some love-sick undertones, don`t you worry. I`m just reminiscing on what could have [never] been.
Most likely, it`s for Nathen.

P.S. Please don`t tell him I wrote this.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

"&I promise you I`ll never ever complain."

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


I`d like to show you some great-grand-kids, eventually.
But, oh! There`s just not enough time for that.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

"What`s that noise up the stairs, babe?
Is that Christmas morning creaks?
&I said I know it well,
I know it well."

Friday, January 23, 2009

The Nap

Red cap, red cap, red cap,
Snug on your curled hair.

Blue eyes, brown eyes, green eyes,
All close eventually, lashes flutter.

Red plaid, red plaid, red plaid,
Loose round your soft waist.

Folded hands, folded hands, folded hands,
‘Cross your murmuring chest.

Blue jeans, blue jeans, blue jeans.
Sun-faded and torn on a barbed wire fence.

White shoes, white shoes, white shoes,
Mildewed laces dribbled in rain-puddles.

Lazy hammock, lazy hammock, lazy hammock,
Inspired the taciturn dreamer to sleep.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

lest we forget...

Dear G,
Welcome home! We`re so glad you made it. Now, please get some rest.
Breakfast will be waiting in the morning.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009


I want to be famous in the way a pulley is famous,
or a buttonhole, not because it did anything spectacular,
but because it never forgot what it could do.
-Naomi Shihab Nye (B. 1952)

Saturday, January 3, 2009


We forget the need &the desire &the comfort of communal solitude. how it comes so easily to our little bones to stay &work &work&work-ad nauseum.
but you wake up a little bit too early, &drop off your dear at the plane station [you secretly hope it leaves without them], &drive back home, &fall back asleep.
&wake up again.
then you drive&drive&drive some a significantly inconsequential town that had a winning high school baseball team in 1999 or 2000. &you make jokes about the paved road in the middle of the red, packed down dirt-clay road that "someone had gotten a little too ambitious over."
&then you wait&wait&wait for a greying Vietnam veteran to explain to you that wolves are not, in fact, agressive. &then you watch one jump on your little sister. because she had gum in her pocket.
&then you walk&walk&walk to the coons, foxes, &skunks. &it has been overcast all day, &secretly you have been worrying that it is going to start pouring and ruin your shoes.
&then you sit down and someone hands you a skunk. So you hold her. Because she is sleepy. [&for the most part, she does not smell bad.]
&most of this time you are wondering how your plane-flying dear is.
But then you remember how you are.
So you ask the woman if it`s legal to own a pet skunk.
"In Florida..."