This year

I think I’ll choose a valentine this year.


my valentine will be

the perfection of bells ringing

from the strand strung across the handlebars

of that bike slowly riding through town.

Or the wet bark of vanilla-butterscotch scented pine,

the one dropping sap spring into fall 

for the bottoms of my feet to collect.

Or the lovely world view offered up by that children’s librarian.

Or the reflection of the silent patron

who sips coffee and dives into book and notebook-

shadow and light of paper, letters, pencil.

Or the hands of that man,

rough in all the right ways.

Probably, though, it’ll be the spark in your eyes

when the magic of this finite existence

brings a smile from rivers so deep

you never stood a chance to resist.


It might be worth checking your mailbox real soon…

Spirited fires light

Eyes heavy from reading news,

a seemingly apocalyptic caravan of events

and, yet, spirited fires light here, there, and there-

in me, in you, over the next hill where soft glow flickers.

Hours on the phone, speaking up, speaking out, thanking,

and yet another heart lifts during great challenge.

Tend to that fire consistently,

have water always near to temper and moisten,

eat of earthen foods to slow, slow

into the long journey ahead.

All are precious in this global transformation,

take another’s hand in yours in pure reminder.

The women speak

The women speak

and dogs lay down side by side,

cats walking railings sit in spots full of sun,

the cursed dust no longer cursed 

becomes, finally, nutrient moving

from here to there.

(Trees nod slowly in recognition.)

The women speak

and silence begins again to be known-

an expansion from where

the most needed, sassy ideas rise.

The women speak,

and our planet shakes off a yoke

we think we’ve set around Her neck.

The women speak,

hummm, yes, listen.

A silence

A silence is being called.


a silence of submission, or


shame or forgetfulness– but

an emboldened silence,

one for hearing voices drifting

through cracks

and memory.


Dear God, Listen-

a new way demands a creativity

well outside the bounds of what has come before.

This silence is gentle, receptive,

immensely strong.

Recall, from the depths,

how it is yours, ours, and


Bones speak, be certain

they are included.

Kick the temple bell

Shy at the gate,

toss your head, flip your tail, 

switch ears, twitch nostrils-

a fine tension builds,

keep with it.

Shimmy your skin and whinny, yes,

a whoa-what’s-happening kind of alarm.

Stay with it.

That gate’s got words for you,

and not of a sort your brain’s going to comprehend.

They have teeth, and dirt, and a strange wind to them,

which may be the reason for the fleeting,


blood chills, maybe.

Rushing to run misses the opportunity.

Kick the temple bell with an eager hoof if you have to

but know

this place between,

at the gate before god knows what and you,

holds the field of promise.

Hang in, possibility calls you far,

far from the familiar.

Someones of Somethingdom

Those pesky brains,

the ones making a someone of a something-

who’s been serving them the kool-aid?

Settle them down before we cart them off

wearing special white outfits complete with ties

they can not undo.

We’ve categorized, cauterized, organized, familiarized 

until the ize of the horizon is known.

Imagining may be cute when your feet are small

but now we must grow up-

taller, smarter, firmer in stance and action;

Up-standing people further things, uphold things-

We are the Someones of Somethingdom.

Reality has a timeline, afterall.

And, then, while we adhere and cohere 

we’ll do something silly like have a child

who will see all we won’t

and giggle until she’s sideways

leaving at least one of us to wonder

just what exactly brings that spark to her eyes

and rolling thunder to her tiny, mirthful belly…

(Go ahead, It says- research that.)

Dust in my shoes

I’ve dust in my shoes

puffing around my ankles step after step,

matting cotton laces thick and stiff.

Time to dump it out.

But, have you ever noticed 

how old sneakers and dust have a thing for each other?

I’ve dust in my shoes.

Turns out, by moonlight it’s silver,

by day sun makes it gold.

Conniving dark nearly got me thinking

there is no magic in such finery.

Then again, these kicks may be saying,

we’ve feet in our dust-

just what are we to do?

The new year

The new year could be a prism,

a prison,

an ache and an embrace.

We just never know,

until at once a soft wind settles and we do.

Offer a kindly nod to the dark,

and an opening of arms to the light-

both will accompany us the whole way;

it is our work to acknowledge and learn from 

the full spectrum every day.

May we remember to create Beauty 

and move skillfully as we can

with the cinnamon dance of Mystery..

And, please, mind the tenderness of little toes.

Stitching time

Stitching time with you

brought me to the end of a thread,

one unkowingly finite.

Pushing my hand through air toward

your warm forehead, lightly damp

beneath a short cascade of brown hair,

mixed salt sour scent, barely perceptible 

and more familiar than any other’s,

in a last inhale holding no more frustration

with the snap of that thread

and a long, tangled, eventually satisfying,

wordless goodbye.