As a girl I gathered the gooseberries
effortlessly and helped my mother bake the pies.
I knew just how much sugar was needed
for the berries—and I could sense
their taste by lightly squeezing them
and measure the tautness or softness
against the sugar. I was always right.
Women paid my mother to have me
make the pies for their festival
offerings or weddings or homecoming feasts. Continue reading →
The cruelty of April which lingers
In a late deadening frost, in the fragile
Breaking of stem, the flood that uproots,
Is finally no match for that herald
Of warm wildflower season—May.
May says to you, Wind this bright ribbon
Around the pole, hang this flower basket
From your neighbor’s doorknob, toast
Your mother’s life and remember the dead,
Celebrate cinco-style all birth and burial. Continue reading →
Crooked driftwood in the skinny tree,
Debris like veils shrouding broken branches,
Small ground gourds from the previous summer
Tumbling to artful rest on piles of small trees,
Spring Creek after the seasonal storm. Continue reading →
I will always love paper. Paper of any kind—in books, newspapers, letters, postcards, cardboard, playing cards, wadded up paper, paper made into origami figures and footballs and those little fortune-teller things you used to make in junior high during history class, notes, grocery lists, wrapping paper. Yeah, you get the idea.
April 18, Poem in Your Pocket Day, is about paper. And more specifically about poetry on paper. I know you can “cheat” and carry a poem on your phone or some other electronic device or in your head or some such. But I prefer old school Poem in Your Pocket Day. A poem on a piece of paper folded and inserted in your pocket. Not in your purse or your backpack or your car or in your lunch. In your actual pocket. Continue reading →
Last month, I spent the first Friday night in Tulsa’s downtown Brady district, on an art crawl, that involved art galleries, pubs, shops, studios, and much much fun. I’m going for round two, and maybe I will see you down there this time. It is a great time in a wonderful area of the city. I parked near the Cain’s Ballroom and headed south down Main Street, then east and made a big circle, ending up at the SoundPony and then back to my car at the end of the evening. Continue reading →
I was a high school and college English teacher for 24 years and littered the classroom with poetry as much as I could without causing epic upheavals and riots . . . though we did get close. Because I’ve loved and written poetry since I was young, I carried that love into the classroom, with mixed results, of course. I learned over time that being a stealth poetry teacher was the best mode of attack: Don’t let them know they are reading or writing poetry. Continue reading →
We wait for the crabgrass and dandelions and wild onion
To shuffle aside the fall leaves, our feet crunching
What has died, our attention focused on sun and wind,
The beauty of not-yet-spring, oh but almost, almost. Continue reading →