Tag Archives: son

November hymnal (18)

November hymnal (18)

Mid-November dusk cut short its set.
The cloud curtain did not part for an encore.

The moon crawled up it like a bug,
Marmorated like the shield shaped insects

We removed from my son’s curtain hours
Earlier, tossing them carefully out the window

And watching them buzz into flight.
Now, curtain and window and screen thrown open,

We climbed out to the roof of the porch
And watched marbled imperceptible motion of the moon,

Like an insect that came all the way from Korea
To barely move on a blue curtain.

So much of the world seems that still
While changing things faster than we can notice.

For just a minute we sat still, too. It was my son’s first time
on the outside of the structure of things. He tallied

It up: angle of the roof, texture of the tar shingles, scent
Of the colorless night and when he said This would be

A great place to write I knew he meant everywhere just
outside structure, where things come a long way to seem still.

Thursday the 12th [from “The Week,” a series of 7 poems leading up to Friday the 13th]


Thursday the 12th

Who stood there for so long
Between the road and the paved walkway

On the unmown grass as each child streamed by?

At ease, or mostly, for the prints are deep, and a casual
Shoulder width apart. Long there he stood, and not prepared

To run; yet the edges slur the grass as if he shifted
Weight from foot to foot, contained energy reined

By watchfulness. So he stood guard.

In the far corner of the school field
While morning did undizzy circles

in children’s shoes, each trip around
that gear of laughter pulleying the sun a few

Minutes higher up the year’s first flawless sky.

Six late winter mornings

Six late winter mornings

It’s the underlined day
On the calendar of forgiveness.
But I cannot make the call.

I get up early
To let the dogs out but

It’s too cold–they stay on the porch
As if waiting for a ride to pull up

Or a drink. I walk to the back yard
And relieve myself

Against the frosted grass.

The black rabbit
Lounges in his hut

By the family vegetable garden.
He often rode on the back of our dog.

One day he lay on his side,
Not waiting for the morning

Or for us to find him.
He was finished and he went.

Leaving only a stiff black shroud
And the sound of birds.

Winter leaves like that.

In our blizzard-crafted snow cave
We almost died

But the snow plow missed us as we hid.
Years later, my childhood friend Marty

in his capacity as a civil servant
of the public works

Tore up a curb with his plow right
Across the street from

Where we’d once schemed
How to pay for the garage window

We broke with a barrage of snowballs.

After an early March storm
I snuck out before my son woke

To make lumps in the snow
Like snake coils surfacing.

Over breakfast I swore
I saw the Loch Ness Snow Monster

Out the bay window in the plow drift:
When we went to investigate

He discovered a large egg
Of ice, snow, and dirt

By the edge of the plowed pile.
He demanded we take it inside.

We put it in the freezer
To see what would hatch.

Spring grows over the winter
Like a scar

The hurt season’s swelling

We almost over-reach for it
As if we prefer being sore

Over forgetting, a cloud
Ceiling over empty blue sky.

End of the Day

End of the Day


By the end of every day I want to leave nothing unsaid
who knows when the next time to say it will be?

If it is tomorrow so much the better
I want to kiss my son’s head carry my daughters

as they sleep from our bed to theirs
though it is not as easy as it was a few years ago

and touch foreheads with each dawn
before light burns our silent words away


Hollow-boned bird on the twig of this moment
knowing that twig is not home but all there is

to perch on I want to catch up with my own
lightness full of all that wings will cover

or carry with a piece of the end of the day
to add to the nest which will be good enough

when I alight at dawn and for the dusk
I will one day wordlessly drift down to