Sunday, May 27, 2012

Trench Coat

I was happy to have
that second hand trench coat,
not lined for warmth
but flapping in the San Francisco air,
as exuberant as my long long hair.

I went to the docks
holding the coat closed around me
like a beige drenched lover,
catching the smell of fish,
and the rain was in my face.

The silver slanted buildings
reflected in the dimples of the water
as I walked with a lovely joy
born of youth and being cold
and a crazy free feeling.

Without that coat I might not have seen
the seals slapping against the pilings
as I ran down the street,
or the man in a yellow slicker who looked
with tarnished eyes
at my matted sky rinsed smile.

Monday, May 14, 2012

An Author is Born

  The Library Sunset with Sweet William

The crackle of a turned page
someone clearing their throat
thoughts zipping
in and out of sections
skidding across tables
zapping from computer terminals
the perfume of knowledge
surrounded him
crisp and clean
with an edge of dusty history
everything hushed and polished

From the window
he could see the mountain
like he could walk there
some spring to the place of Manzanita
its red-barked graceful trunk
and yellow Scotch Broom
abandoned down the hillside
falling over boulders painted
red and black with graffiti
now covered with winter snow
turned pink from the setting sun

As he left the library
those beloved doors closed
and the cement steps
the clock tower
even the sidewalk
were stained mauve
as violet windows watched
the end of day

The high craggy peaks
of cement and concrete
steal and glass
at this moment captured
the rosy glowing countenance
of the sky

He saw buildings instead of trees
but there was that same
reverent hush around him
that he had felt in the library
the same upturned rapture

It was raining the night Sweet William was born.  The steady drops tapped on the overturned aluminum boat outside my bedroom window, while I was safe and warm in my bed in a small city in Los Angeles County.  I stayed awake wondering how William was coping with so much rain, writing his answers into my dreams.  He was one person made by my imagination into every man.  I wrote his story because my heart told me that I needed to. He lived in my computer and in the hearts of friends that I shared his life with.  As his life changed, I became a better person.  Everyone I shared his life with, loved him and through him, me.

I painted his dark curly hair and his blue eyes and I felt his pain.  I also felt his triumph when the wonderful publisher, Buddhapuss Ink LLC, read his story that had become my story, and liked it.  My good friend, Mariam Kobras, inspired me when she told me how she had signed with them and published her first book, Distant Shore.  What did I have to lose? I have gained so much because I have this itch to write and if I don’t scratch it with words I think I might explode.   

“You are an author now,” Mariam tells me.  Yes, I am.

Saturday, May 12, 2012


Lily, my lily, you quietly plundered,
after all that work in garden, I'm stained burnt umber.
My nose and cheek are now the color of brick,
for your fragrance beguiled me into forgetting your trick.
You quietly opened while I was mowing the lawn,
I really hadn't meant to be away that long.
You were such a pretty color as you danced with air,
I yielded to the perfume of Earth's own dare,
then cut your gorgeous flowers to make a bouquet
that captured your scent for more than just a day.
(Wanting to breathe the incense of your beginning
tenuous life could not be sinning.)
Or could it?
Stunned by my mirror this morning, I was glazed
by your tendril's power powder on my face, amazed;
and it won't come off, this magic dust is fragile, but keeping,
even though it stained my pillow while I was soundly sleeping.
Too soon the lovely fold of you will die or rot
while I'll remain with pale, decidedly not.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Moon Thoughts

Your window is open to let in a part of night.
Perhaps a lamppost star drizzles a light-line there;
encased in coat of gray in day, now making a halo
at each corner that whispers direction to morning birds.
Or, a cricket rustles in the leaves a song to you
all drenched in sleep, behind your eyes you hear it
as a lullaby fenced in to yard, a nighttime friend
keeping watch, for silence it will not let in.
You fold the moon within your lips,
blow out stars with every breath
and in that deep sound of a dream they dance
around the window screen.
Your sheets are warm with length of leg
as hand grips air then opens flat on pillow;
grace is caught within the curve so sweet at rest,
I see it find a place of colored memory
where each finger trembles into touch of secret place.
From the curve of night tides turn,
the waves break and keep time with a promise,
for in the night just before first light
you hear it tell you with moon glow,
things you always wanted to know.
The night cannot explain to day
the way its canopy like a treasure chest,
holds the key to secrets 
that in the dark the heart begets.
How and why and when again?
I ask the ageless how become,
the sky an opening to the whim
of wondering at the window
with elbows pointing out as was before,
time backwards and the minutes leaking, gathering
and finally winking out the door.
The dark side falls into the opening
of space and time,
light is swallowed only to be spit out
and sound has no echo in the din.
There is fast like standing still
and holes that carry thunder,
wind empties all the pockets of dust
and blows them all around then under,
even lust lays back the skin a song
finding greater meaning there all along.
How and why and when again?
A child's fancy listens for a clue,
waiting at the window of the night,
knowing in the dark it is easier to hear
the answers that hide within the light.
The silver slanted finger touch of moon,
drizzles light across the plains of cities;
cool in the window
it plays in the street
and hides behind tall trees
that wear their skirts high
and drip berries in the spring.
It sees the pattern of life is not flat,
on the hills and valleys it rides;
it could be water and reflect regret,
instead it digs into the meaning
and wanders off following the pull
of some magic that lives in dark.
Like a child beguiled by sign keep out,
it plays on the other side of the fence
waiting for time to make a place to slide through,
for the pattern buckles and tears sometimes
and wears so thin in places that it seems gone.
The silver slanted fingers of the moon
play like patterns weaving light and shadow;
they pull berries from the tree,
beguiled by the dripping sweet and sticky lick of dark,
waiting for a place to slide through and see,
following the pull toward the other side.