• When they were small, I’d line them up

    before we’d go into the grocery store,

    spit on a tissue and wipe their faces,

    straighten their hair, inspect.

    They say now I was marking them.

    I’ve watch […]

  • After my father’s third wife left him, he tacked up a paper target onto the center of the cathode ray credenza and pegged a picture of my latest step-mother over it. He towed the fridge into the sitting room, p […]

  • I.

    Blacksmiths re-arrange

    silken threads

    Tailors forge


    Where do you form, irony, to then become formless?

    What whistles these are, from disintegrated yokes afar?

    Fourteenth century […]

  • Since you left,
    this apartment got smaller.
    Like you packed away
    the space you existed in,
    and carried it off with you.
    A whole world by your side,
    in a purse.
    What you left

    are echoes of […]

  • After Margot Canaday’s The Straight State




    At Ellis Island

    they found the immigrant’s body



    Protuberant breasts;

    also a small, atrophied penis,

    testicle undesc […]

  • Dissolving through the throngs on LoDo streets.

    Beer soaked smiles and purple clothed melee.

    Bars brimming full with possibility.

    First Rockies home game only minutes away.


    The golden bubbly […]

  • A Parable

    A big wave was coming. My car rose, then filled with water. O God, this can’t be happening! I looked up, my car could fly! It rocked up over the trees, skimmed the tops. Through the clear bottom I […]

  • My eyes fold on the

    past – a frozen wasteland



    These may be

    false hopes, but they

    heal the wounds we



    Insecure stains of the distant

    slowly crawling c […]

  • You’ve fallen a little in love with your oncologist. The wisdom in the creased skin around his eyes, the sureness of the neat part in his silver hair. The way he holds the chart with steady hands, his intense l […]

  • Bottomless Lake

    they all said it was “bottomless,”

    that lake past all the farms,

    a couple hours’ drive;

    they said boats went down

    and never left a trace, vanished

    as if swallowed whole by tim […]

  • A boy of birdpoems

    and monstrous stories


    a painter of numbered rocks

    frozen from their histories


    a swinger of vines

    a creek leaper


    a loam digger

    and salamander na […]

  • Reminiscent

    To-day, I thought of you.  Who I’m kidding?  Not a day that memories of you, of us—how we were together, slips past.  How long it’s been now: a year, many years or was it in another time and […]

  • A black drape flutters

    before my face or is it

    a heavy veil of smoke


    while offering prayer

    for a friend

    following a cremation.


    Let the dark pall shield my eyes

    dim my mind from k […]

  • They were

    j u m p i n g
    double dutch
    they called it.
    two skinny
    black girls
    with legs the
    size of

    and mouths
    that could be
    heard from one end
    of the block
    to the oth […]

  • Doctor’s words
    swam around
    her head
    like moths,
    and for a minute she couldn’t breathe. Leaving the cracker-white medical arts building she drove directly to the fast, cold river and dove in. There, sta […]

  • The night was yellow. A city of light bulbs, ready to blow out. At the top, the Ferris wheel stopped sharply with a rust-covered clank heard across the park, and a woman screamed. Couples held hands a little […]

  • The setting is in and around Harvard Law School, 1973. It’s a Sunday afternoon. Although I should be spending my time working on my law review article, I sit in the library writing a note on reasons for ending m […]

  • It comes to me in the watch museum.

    It’s weights, hammers and gears.

    Action, reaction.

    The thud of an escapement.

    The dominoes of a story.


    I stand inside a pocketwatch

    and lose myself to in […]

  • I strut into Sephora—a large makeup store—“just to look” and come out with lipstick: matte mauve, glittering nude, a glossy green, daring, my mother claiming it makes me look ill, zombified, ridiculous. But I f […]

  • 1

    Returning to their home town after 25 years

    was surreal. They got lost trying to get to

    the high school. The ice cream stand they worked in

    was now a dry cleaners, while Old Smith’s Farm

    was g […]

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