Thursday, May 3, 2018

boundless blur

a heart that can will itself, will.

often will is lost
between fear filled lungs
and a moldy mind

I find you in the fog
lying in memory and now
tasting ruthless truths I bury

this life is mine
but faceless figures define
who and how I share it

the clock ticks faster
my skin gets cancer
and I struggle more than ever to leave the house

your life is yours
and over til it's right

chapped lips crack
chapped lips bleed
moisture is our choice

find me
in the fog
beyond the veil

this boundless blur
my heart
wills so

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


I start today with a surface memory from the morning you passed.
I was supposed to get blood work. 
I was three weeks past my weekly draw.
The nurse called with ‘come in, today.’
The ‘had I gone’ doesn’t exist.

I can’t what if.
I won’t what if.
I was there
beside you
exactly where and when 
you left. 

Five years later on the hour
I am here writing words to keep you.

The truth is I was thirtysomething 
and I held your hand, often.
I didn’t think much of it, then.
I realize now what is rare.

When I was nineteen,
you held your hands above your head and danced
in a doorway in a bathrobe in a hotel in Florida.
Your grace taught me freedom.

Breastfed beyond two,
(I was the last child 
to be held and understood)
I thought I was the anomaly.

You carried twelve
delivered all naturally
loved all unconditionally 
and lived gentle into eighty,
leaving stories behind
of lives changed and healed.

Mother, you are the anomaly.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

our bounty

there is a sickness in silence
that passes in secret
while women women and more women
stretching over continents and centuries
feel the same sword.

1 doctor, 125 women. 
decade after decade after decade. 
how sick the size of one man's damage.

we are in this bubble together
and for every time i fail to warn you
and for every time you fail to warn me
the damage done is doubled.

when your lover beat you with words, fists, or lies
why did i not rise for you?
when my lover beat me with words, fists and lies
why did you not rise for me?

behold that we are our bounty   
so our bodies are bound for reverence.

Friday, January 12, 2018

settle the unknown

I have a truth I carry
In the palm of my pale hand
When love left for India
I came to understand

A map may reveal distance
A watch will tick and wind
This knowing you placed within me
Settles the unknown in my mind

My body may grow weak
You remain soft by my side
You are my deepest root
You are my strongest guide

A map may reveal distance
A watch will tick and wind
This knowing you placed within me
Settles the unknown in my mind

Saturday, December 23, 2017

raised to love

a fever brews in the blood
and shivers surface over skin.

here the beating self begins.
here, the weak body.
here, the wilting mind.

i fear being the burden
that slows her race with destiny.
i fear being her burden
that distracts her from joy.

i fear being unloved when i am most vulnerable.

she holds my face
and exorcises these notions.
she was raised to be kind and gentle.
she was raised to love.

this is the last fever i will be the fool.

Monday, September 25, 2017


the last time i was on manhattan
your fingers rubbed arnica over me.
with gentle compassion
your eyes stared into my skull,
with fierce protection
your wine numbed our shock
with soothing tannins.

with stained skin and bones scarred
i carried the silence too long
and you let me speak.

we have always let each other speak.
for twenty years 
through first loves, first heartbreaks
first highs, first depressions
first babies, first albums 
first homes, first deaths
first careers, first breakdowns
first acts, first curtain calls
first firsts and more firsts. 
i have always felt heard,
i have always heard you.

we have been young on highways,
shouting at the wind with pink lungs.
we have been older on desert mountains,
starving for oxygen and solace.

in this moment, 
i'm looking at you across a rooftop that overlooks Manhattan.
there will always be distance.
but we are survivors.
this friendship is prolific.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Five Years

does it ever get old,
this second chance at life?

aging is a mother-loving blessing
and every morning is a milestone.

at 17 i didn't think i'd live past 35
and told Alec this when i was 27.

i died no doubt.
buried sadness,
made more room,
and let a kidney resurrect a better me.

i've always been a hugger,
but now i hold on longer
because no one is counting
and touch is my memory shaper.

in these five years
i've touched the cliffs in Ireland
i've touched the toes of new born babies
i've touched the lips of women i love
i've touched the walls of a homemade prison and said goodbye
i've touched the fur of my pups
i've touched scars and cancer, breasts and hips
i've touched the strings of chords in songs i dreamed of writing
i've touched pages of novels that ignited my brain
i've touched the wool in weavings spun by a woman i adore
i've touched skin that gave me goosebumps
i've touched the peridot stone on my left ring finger
i touched the fading pulse of my dying mother.

when she gave me her kidney,
she cleaned out the garbage
and taught me the depth of love.

(before my blood was clean
i was convinced love meant struggle
so i embraced some bruises
and i cried silently in corners.)

when she gave me her kidney,
she cleaned out the garbage
and taught me the depth of my life.

i pause for flowers in fields, i pause for cloud shapes in the sky,
i pause for strangers on the sidewalk, i pause for kissing goodbye
i pause for memories in the making, and i pause to write down these words.

if you give me a kidney, i'll give you reflections on what it means to be alive
every year
until i die.