"It's hard to believe we were so hollowed out, so drained, only so we could shine a little harder when the light finally came." -Ada Limon



Light Refraction (Gray Areas 2)

This is about the mystery muse who has been inspiring some of my best poems and essays. Including “Something Dark Like Jazz” Word Riot published back in July of this year. Read the first Gray Areas here, if you are so inclined to read about this evolving half-fantasy half-real affair I am having, each Gray Area post is a new height, perspective, emotion, more thoughts, or just wandering around inside my mind, still in a respectful, silenced awe of things… Refraction of Light –sort of a poem, sort of just thoughts, sort of maybe the bones to an essay someday…


Reinvent Yourself Endlessly

Every time a professor asked me or my peers what my poems meant–I never quite knew how to answer. They’re comments led me around and around the center of how I always felt about it but couldn’t word,  I just acted like I already knew. That’s why it was written–those were the words to what it was, what the truth to me was. It’s not that I didn’t know but that my body or mind seems to piece things together with words and images before I can catch up. My first poem I ever wrote was Vapor in 2005. And…

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The Point

Madness, they do not tell you, is as lonely as it is scary.

But a map of that night, that space,

and I started seeing without knowing how

that the answers were not static, they were not concrete,

they were not written. They were not

even thought of–they cannot be touched,

they were sketched stars in reverse,

they were the universes in my irises unraveling,

the answers became something changed-something new-

through the radioactive pulse of my unstable heart,

shedding another degree and sparking a new one.


Published in Word Riot

…A steady and heavy cello across absurd piano strokes crash into everything I’ve judged myself on, every law I am governed by and I am intoxicated by the strangeness, drunk on this existential, loveless affair, this music. There is something cold in his quiet demeanor, something almost cruel, a hidden beat to his body, to his sex, a muted aggression beneath a tie. I imagine his eyes ignoring his surroundings, lost in thoughts on maybe statistics, maybe sex, maybe the structure of …


And Your Face, in the Mirror?

This is a poem structure of Louise Gluck’s, I copied the italics and answered the questions my way, and in this new draft, I am contrasting my old perspective when I wrote this with my perspective now. It has changed drastically-since the first draft of this poem two years ago. You can read the first, old draft here, from when I was in that dark space. Now for the new one:     “Are you healed or do you only think you’re healed?”   I told myself it is terrible and beautiful to survive. Believing it might make me so, with whatever limitations I guided myself by.     “But can you love anyone yet?”   I slipped across mirrors, always mirrors. I was only yet learning my reflection, a face I didn’t know.     “But will you touch anyone?”  …


Constant State of Flux

A hot summer evening, hot enough to lay my tireless, unending head on the pillow for its coolness; thunder cracking down my avenue and the rain slanting in sideways, wetting the blowing paisley curtains; somewhere out in that dark the pine I am surrounded by soaks.   These nights I am not climbing up the roots of forgotten things, I am not scrambling for something solid I can breathe my air into, that old familiar ache of wanting to feel through my own skin so hard that I push right through it like a broken bone   because I am here, in a constant state of awakening, sometimes only to another dream only to wake up again and I stand in the mirror…

Baba Yaga & Vasilisa

Baba Marta

For Brendan’s prompt at Real Toads.  It took me awhile to really chew on this one. Good one, Brendan! I chose an interesting combo of Plath and the Slavic goddess/demon Morana: I inhabit the wax image of myself, a Doll’s body. Sickness begins here; I am A dartboard for witches. –Sylvia Plath   BABA MARTA   They burned dolls of Morana, Baba Marta, tired of her winter her death her nightmares she breathed into the children pressing their chests and stealing their breath, crippling their faith, their little bodies– her dark hair spreading around their beds like night.    …


Paramour, My Lover

A poem written for and inspired by Real Toad’s “Sunday Mini-Challenge: Paramour“, the amazing challenge written and designed by Brendan over at Oran’s Well. (photos of eduardoizq)   It is like shedding light, and looking into the mirror Naked and burning and unashamed in fever Drop the platitudes you hide in like you Dropped your panties onto the tiles. Drop the cage you have lived in like you Dropped your bustier. Touch your curves not shyly but curiously Looking at your body like he does. Look at it The way you always should have, through your nature— That wild forgotten…


If Death Were a Woman

poetry for and inspired by Imaginary Garden with Real Toads –free-write, first draft, just going for what I see…   IF DEATH WERE A WOMAN She will come for me like words do when they wake me from dreams, printed in my mind’s eye, an inkblot of the perfect image, the perfect metaphor, the perfect motif, the perfect theme, the clearest point.   She will wear a black dress that moves like it’s in oil, her figure slight and round and complete; her dark eyes will summon me outside, to a garden, so dark the night will be that it…


Rummaging Pays

I have been rummaging through all my words, all my pieces, all my prose and thoughts and themes and connecting vignettes and essays and poems for years—rummaging like a garage-saler on dexi’s frantically looking for that one thing, that illumination, thee connection, the answer to what is going to contain it all and make it flow and shine in a brilliance I need to feel. And I need to feel it because I need to know, as only writing has ever shown me, who I am. It has occurred to me over extensive self-examination, watching myself, paying attention to my…

Gypsy, Stripped Down

So this version, I came across it tonight and it took my breath away, goosebumps, throat hurt. Because that slow, decided piano with those lyrics, and even that low tone of her voice– for me this song is me saying goodbye to the child/doll that has haunted me, because she was a piece of me I was terrified of, and I have come to terms with her, I stopped fearing the nightmares of her and so on, and some how, I showed her compassion. She has been quiet. She’s gone, and lovable. Damn, this song.Beautiful. Gypsy, Fleetwood Mac So I’m…

Turn a Whiter Shade of Pale

But she smiled at me so sadly That my anger straightway died If music be the food of love Then laughter is its queen And likewise if behind is in front Then dirt in truth is clean.   –Whiter Shade of Pale The Black Cat was a dark coffee shop a lot of the Northland College kids gathered at.  Hippies and environmentalists, writers and musicians.  I was sixteen in my hemp mushroom jewelry and bell-bottoms.  Sunday afternoon late afternoon sun streaked through the open French doors and lit up the wood planks.  I was sitting on a couch reading when…

By Your Side

“When your lost, and you low, and you can’t get back again,  I will show you you’re so much better than you know…. you think I’d leave you down when you’re down on your knees? I couldn’t do that… …when you’re cold, I’ll be there to hold you tight to me  when you’re on the outside and cant get in i will show you you’re so much better than you know when you’re lost and alone and cant get back again I’ll find you and bring you home If you want to cry I’ll be there to dry your eyes…