Nighttime Begins with a Line by Pablo Neruda
May 02, 2005

So my body went on growing, by night, went on pleading & singing to the earth I was born to be woven back into: Love, let me see if I can't sink my roots deeper into you, your minerals & water, your leaf-rot & gold, telling & un- telling of the oldest tales inscribed on wind-carved rocks, silt & grass, your song & prayers, your oaths & myths, your nights & days in one unending lament, your luminous swarm of wet kisses & stings, your spleen and mind, your outrageous forgetting & remembrance, your ghosts & rebirths, your thunder stones & mushrooms

The Want Room
December 20, 2004

I want to unshroud my desire for desire now that I've plumbed midlife where nothing nimbles the heart numbed. So that the most I can do is long for longing, hanker for rank hunger, thirst for raw thirst. I want to kneel at the foot  of this desk, bed, life and pray I can still pray for something. That the blood and breath of this body can still rise and pant for someone. That even if it's taken all day to unfold these few minutes accordioned in before I snap on the body- suit of Mother, the Goodly housewife at the sofa, the table, the range that the Want Room will still open for me with my bl

Yellow Jackets
June 07, 2004

I was in awe of the way they lived in both the ground and air, both digging and flying, both demon and angel. I was ready to kill them with gasoline when I noticed my neighbor's burning eyes across the street.

Modus Operandi
May 03, 2004

The curtains drawn, all rectangles are blue. Four morning pigeons wheel in the school glue. I hate the treacherous light of December. Cold. I eat pumpkin soup out of the blender. The central heating grumbles: “You, get out.” Right.

Hurricane Hymnal
March 22, 2004

"Put your trust in sea-glass," whisper Lovers, kissing. "Lay a towel out For shells." A good Anthology To have handy once New Jersey's swept away. "Just stay Inside the eye, you'll be Safe. I once was Saved that way."  This poem appeared in the March 24, 2004 issue of the magazine.

May 05, 2003

It didn't rain. And it didn't rain. And it didn't rain. Returning, after a month away, from a place up north, the yard was parched and dying, the horse coiled like a snake— As if the present were past, I walk from this thing to that, touching dry leaves. Here is the dogwood that bloomed when T. was dying. Here is the sunflower, ravaged by July, and here is the Rose of Sharon, coming, in August, into its own.Here. Here. And here. The arbor.

After a Death
April 21, 2003

His wife waits by the gate. The afternoon meal is all but finished. What will you say to her, which of the speeches, long prepared, will fall trippingly from your tongue? The village center's just a short walk. The parson is a clever man, and fancies himself a puppeteer. You watched him play out Luther's amazement with a small stringed toy. Still, the point is made. We should all see differently, though of course, some do, some are made to do. So it seems, Lynn, so it seems (and here you pause, thinking better). Well, let's go for a walk. I've been inside all day.

Mr. Emerson Tries to Complete an Essay
June 24, 2002

At his hard desk, no longer wholly conscious         Of the pen in his right hand, no longer confined                By the dimensions of the floor and the four walls But ascending through the ceiling toward the threshold         Of Transcendental Understanding, he heard                Ker-luck-a-put, cluck, the chickens, his own Chickens outside the window, one of which         Would be reduced to portions of itself                And stewed for dinner, and though he had lost The thrust of his hierarchic argument         For a moment, he took the chicken to be an example                Of the

Lovelife—The Home Stretch
March 25, 2002

An olive branch, both given and apologised for in the same breath. Like the gift of sécateurs that will come to weigh upon the gardening gloves, freckled with damp, between the French doors and a row of annuals, until the Grundig runs down, the day thickens, and a lamp in the living room flicks on. This poem originally ran in the March 25, 2002 issue of the magazine.

Other Hand
February 24, 2002

The lesser twin, The one whose accomplishments And privileges are unshowy: getting to touch The tattoo on my right shoulder. Wearing the mitt. I feel its familiar weight and textures As the adroit one rests against it for a moment. They twine fingers. Lefty, continues to experience considerable Difficulty expressing himself clearly And correctly in writing. Comparison with his brother prevents him From putting forth his best effort. Yet this halt one too has felt a breast, thigh, Clasped an ankle or most intimate Of all, the fingers of a hand. And possibly his trembling touch, As less merely a