Sunday, June 22, 2014

Les Papillons

Butterflies hang together 
in tight and close formations.
Framed and pinned to ivory muslin
upon the study walls.

Pairs of shiny goggled eyes
stare forever up
through the clear glass sky.

Each tiny leg is crouched in readiness.
Their extended wings of brilliant colors wait,
eager to soar and hunt the taunting rainbow.

This fearless squadron would soar
with but a single moments notice;
oh, that unsuspecting arc 

would never see them come.

But it is for them the trap is set,

the lofty spectrum thirsts for their color.
Hiding among the clouds,
the ever-hungry lure.

Their collective breath stays clenched,
the days return to dusk.
Wings lay poised and dusty,
in prayer for mass ascent.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014


It had just been any Friday,
till the sun went dark
and my mother’s words came
dressed in her night-time voice.

From front row seats, all eyes watched
in black and white denial.
Soon the yards bulged with kids
herded away, out from underfoot.
We were of the times and so
commenced to play our outside wars
with zeal and seasoned cinematic flair.

Tommy and I laid siege to his house,
finally bursting through the kitchen door
amid the heat of battle, our finger-guns ablaze.
The assault was swiftly quelled
by a single crumpled, sobbing woman.

There was no escape from the black cook's eyes
as she wailed in her wounded pain.
We had brought the dead to stand before her
and hadn't even known his name.
Our faces fell silent, our fingers jammed
as she turned and fled the room.

At six we had not yet seen death
nor knew on that bright fall day
witless we had acted out
the eclipse of a people’s hope
in the loss of that single man.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Old Houses

With the fail of light,                     
sighs of old houses
sift down from their attics
as they settle in to slumber.

Boards hunker down to rest.
Nails relax and loosen their communal hold.
A collective nod to gravity
for the trump she is.

In the late hours when no one listens
except the wind and wandering mouse,
prodigal time itself returns
to console the countless days
still roosting in the rafters.

Then too, comes the dying time when calendars end.
No foot treads the stair or cellared depths
and no hand slams the doors.
Peeling paint and rust and ruin,
bleach their flesh-bare bones.

Houses stand weeping in the rain,
with only shadows to move across their floors.
The cruel death of dry-rot whispers,
"They all left you long ago,
your keys now lost and gone."

Tuesday, June 3, 2014


If indeed there is any magic in this world,
it’s tucked inside fireflies and rainbows,
echoes and shimmering mirages.

In the morning, some of it adorns
the silk of spider webs.                      
It mixes with evening mist upon a lake
that swirls and dances into place
from higher lands, whispering,

"What lies beyond,

farther to the west,

or distant east?”

Magic lies still, waiting on the ground.
It hopes that you will look
through eyes prepared to find
and a full expectant heart.

Surely it is there
when one of us finds the other.