The Goddess

“No one will listen to me! They keep ignoring me!” My youngest screams through his weeping as he gets out of the pool at the hotel where his five close friends are staying. I feel a wrenching inside – like an organ has come loose. My throat is dry and tight. My chest constricts. It […]

On The Fractured Self

My six-year-old son would like to kill his mother and brother. I get it. Somewhere in my fractured psyche there is a killer. My Calvin was sprung out from him when I was young. But my Calvin and my Killer no longer pull as many strings, I am left now with something like a Whitman […]

Mimus Polyglottos

There is so much to fear. Mainly death, but other things too – divorce, a wasted life, the hatred of your children, serial killers – perhaps just death after all. I stand in my back yard, putting yard trash in contractor bags – seventy cents a bag – bankruptcy, foreclosure, homelessness, hunger, death again. There […]

A Day at the Alligator Farm

We lie in bed together in the dark. Your disappointment rages, so I make an effort. “What’s wrong?” I press half-heartedly. You answer, “you locked yourself away from us today. I feel alone. I am afraid our lives are being wasted.” Earlier that day a brown anole begins to sink to the bottom of the underwater […]

Brother, You Sit Across From Your Repentant Mentor

Brother, you sit across from your repentant mentor – our brother too, in the coffee shop where I write. He tells you about salvation. About the forgiveness of sins. But he does not tell you which sins. Brother, do not repent of the animal. The gluttony, the lust, the avarice, et al. The “deadly” sins. […]

At 7:00 AM I Hear the Padding

At 7:00 AM I hear the padding of miniature feet on wood floors to my right. It is the youngest. Not yet past the ache of sleep. He sees me working on the couch in the living room, stumbles towards me and quietly throws himself into my lap. My throat tightly chokes back the joy […]

Sermon Notes for a Friend (Mark 4:26-29)

We do not find the kingdom of God in the usual places – It is not in Simon the Zealot’s dream of revolution nor in the inner court of the temple upon the altar of the religious elite nor in the smiles pulled taut across the faces of faithful church attenders. No, the kingdom of […]

Dear Old Man Sweeping

Dear old man sweeping the street in front of the Murray Hill Theater, You found it in your body, aching no doubt with age, to wish me a good day in the face of your impossible task – to sweep the street. For where do you stop? Do you not know, do your employers not […]

In Praise of My Wife

I liken you to lichen; me – an average piece of rock on any given forest floor. You have grown slowly over my ragged places. Not hiding them – making them bloom A kind of interplanetary beauty. Or perhaps we are, not Coleridge’s, but Attenborough’s albatross. A wild, constant mating pair. Or I dunno, a […]

The Palmetto Weevil

The palmetto weevil sings the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof. God what a horror to behold. I am heavy with death and the tragedy of words. I sift it through my past and my body in the race to build some kind of arc. But the fullness will not be mined. It […]

To My Wife

We are both a disappointment. But most days, it is enough for me to see a fingernail or two of yours in clear, morning light, and you are returned to me. My soft bipedal mammal. Our small animal love is again larger than Plato’s soaring delusions.

On the Dollar Weed

Dear Friends, I am concerned because we do not honor the dollar weed. It is true, the dollar weed cannot love like us. And the dollar weed cannot observe, or speak, or think like us. But friends, these things do not make the dollar weed less honorable. The dollar weed is honorable because it is […]


Dear friend, I am dying Like everyone else Like everyone else I am alone Is it us? Or is it you?

The Cost of Living

Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life. Isaiah 43:4 Please God What do I cost? My bacteria chewed by blood My grass crushed by foot My cows ground by gut My knowledge quashed by brain My oaks gnarled by concrete My rivers dried […]

To My Son, Dancing Alone in the Gulf of Mexico, July 10, 2015

My son, I wish that I could break myself into the song, the ancient one, that makes you dance there on the continental shelf. It rattled in the boy I was, and aches now from the years. If I was it, not me, then I would stay this sweet for you and free. Like you […]

Tell Me Resin Joseph (A Christmas Poem)

Tell me resin Joseph on your walnut mantle perch red of duraflame® blaze beneath you in the Christmas fire, white of Sherwin Williams 7562 Interior above you on the Christmas wall. How faithful to the incarnation you seem hell below, heaven above, Immanuel between. But for the stockings hanging there from finishing nails and the […]

Maxforce FC Ant Bait Station

“Due to Fipronil and its accelerated domino effect kill, Maxforce Ant Bait Stations start to kill ants in just six hours. Tests show 90% population reductions in just four days for ants.” product description I love them with a stillness like regret. And when they enter me I gather up the consciousness to play […]


Dear God, I know it’s much to ask of you but please, please make this great big bag of skittles have lots more reds than any other color. In fact, I’ll boldly pray in faith that you will make them all the red kind. Be it so! But if you don’t and choose instead in all your […]

Sea Dog

In the splintering rain the old sheepdog sat on the dock with hair like seaweed waiting. He did not note the wood as it whimpered and rose into snarls at every wave, the few boats rubbing the dock struggling to dry. If the storm had let him see those two tumbling blues trysting on the […]

Apple Core

Ah! nom de Dieu! qu’ont donc crié ces entrecôtes -Guillaume Apollinaire Guillaume Apollinaire, an apple core am I. Tell me, is this thing you have done, your plucking of my tree away from me, your violent “mastications,” as you call them, is this thing so good that you could whistle through my pulp stuck in […]