Chaos as Recovery

Let Chaos Be

A palimpsest on Let Evening Come by Jane Kenyon

(Palimpsest: a manuscript or piece of writing on which the original writing has been effaced to make room for later writing but of which traces remain; using the bones of the original writing as the basis and springboard for the new piece).


Let tongues wag 140
characters on Twitter feeds,
#hashtag words rife knife.

Let emotions loose
like mice in a field with summer
on their feet. Let chaos be.

Let red and blue placards sprout
from neighbors’ lawns. Let fake news
rupture the resounding silence.

Let traffic snarl. Let road rage.
Let the hurricane rip down Main Street.
Let chaos be.

To the microphones on podiums,
to televised debates, to Instagram photos
let chaos be.

Let it be, as it explodes. Fearless.
A cyclone that carries us blessedly beyond our own
front porch, so let chaos be.

Life as art

Wet With Rain

Wet With Rain
My heart mourns
the loss of words
once ribboned into poems
now empty – a clothesline
between two poles.

My throat lumps
at the muddle of notes
no longer giving voice
to windstorms or the sky
holding its breath.

My eyes mist over
the just-before-moonrise
when twilight offers its nakedness
on a purple breeze
and wild bergamot wet with rain.

And my lonely heart,
lost in a mulberry thicket,
longs for the night when the moon’s halo
no longer lingers, long and sweet
on your lips.



January Thaw

Can it ever be too warm in January? Yesterday, it got close to 70 degrees in town. Really? It made striding a loop around Bamboo Brook Park a very comfortable no-brainer, and I even spotted two bluebirds – symbols of spring, happiness and transition. A nice thought, but I’m not ready to relinquish winter’s introspective and quiet beauty just yet. Today was not as warm, however we had the windows open in the studio. Some like hot – some not. I worry about  polar bears and polar poles’ rising temperatures and melting icebergs. Is it just about our expectations or is it about loss? Not quite sure. Snow in the forecast tomorrow.


no wolves howling last night their full moon lost in its lore


Bourbon and Blackberries

It’s just a few minutes before 4:00 AM, and it’s just a few days before the start of a new year.

Time — it’s all an illusion, and yet it fully engages, sparks and/or distracts us. So with that thought in mind, I am choosing once again (my fifth year) to commit to the practice of daily writing during January and onto February. January is for writing small stones (described below) and February for writing small poems. Thank you to Fiona Robyn, now Satya Robyn, for introducing and poeting small stones back in 2011. It’s a practice, along with painting, that satiates my inmate desire to combine presence and imagination, reality and whimsy with poetry and prose.

bourbon and blackberries — how does art get done?

Mindful Writing Tool: small stones

A small stone is a short piece of writing (prose or poetry) that precisely captures a fully-engaged moment. The process of finding small stones is as important as the finished product – searching for them will encourage you to keep your eyes (and ears, nose, mouth, fingers, feelings and mind) open.
A small stone is a short piece of writing that precisely captures a fully-engaged moment.

towels and shirts and pillowcases show me the shapes of the breeze

Fiona Robyn

Finding A New Mistress


A found poem from the New York Times article:
The Man Who Saw America by Nicholas Davidoff
About Robert Frank ~ the photographer (July 5, 2015)


A Young Artist


One too many mornings of stubble
his melancholy eyes
collect the world.

He could have been anybody
in a casino, restroom, elevator
in a second-hand Ford.

In search of some moment
unable to explain.
A young artist.

In love. Alone.
Upriver into the heart of ambivalence
lost in a piece of the middle.

You have doubts.
You wear humanity differently.
The ache of a narrow bed.

The business of catching things
grasping at prayer
time to look for a new mistress.


ag ~ 2015

Distilling Loneliness – A Pantoum

I find it interesting and even a bit disconcerting, in a way (for I fancy myself a bit of a rebel spirit), that I often enjoy the exercise and discipline of following a structured form in writing poetry. I began writing poems by composing haiku – where brevity meets beauty. Now I challenge myself more by writing pantoums and villanelles.

Structure. The pantoum is a form of poetry similar to a villanelle in that there are repeating lines throughout the poem. It is composed of a series of quatrains; the second and fourth lines of each stanza are repeated as the first and third lines of the next.

It’s fun to try to follow the structure outlined and still express the spirit of the words.

Distilling Loneliness

Following the loving
In the long of day
The distance of blue
Beyond the sweep of sky.

In the long of day
My fingers roam on their own
Beyond the sweep of sky
And your eyes hunger for more.

My fingers roam on their own
While touching releases a sigh
And your eyes hunger for more
Summer squalls rumble by.

While touching releases a sigh
Following the loving
Summer squalls rumble by
In the distance of blue.