Blackbird

I stub my toe on
hard spots in my soul. Well, how
otherwise explain

the pain, chagrin, rage?
There’s no darkness like that dark.
So, inward Gnostic,

your spell’s dispelled as
suddenly by a blackbird’s
song during the night.

It is practicing
for day. In my poverty,
its song is the day.

Sunday at the Park

Some mysticisms
empty the self for good, or
so it seems. As a

schoolboy center field
was my choice. A few fly balls,
dandelions, birds.

Life had other plans.
Now I watch the game unfold
at the park. I bring

my singular full
life. The god of baseball plays
tricks all afternoon.

Psalm

I write another
useless poem in praise of
the Keeper of all

mortal things. It’s a
pretty Spring day; New England
earth loosens our snow.

We praise our Keeper
through all this change. Beautiful
red-haired Lenaje

flies home tomorrow.
Today we praise our Keeper
to keep her safe, her

papa safe, her boy-
friend safe and ready to start
over when it’s time.

Floating Dream

‘In the floating dream
of this life’ (Charles Wright): I
beg your pardon. Post-

humous vision is
quite possible here and now,
what you call this life.

The simple beauty
of your sleeping lover’s hand
outside your duvet:

that is no dream. Take
it in. It comes as a gift
you do not deserve.

Ideas

I sit becalmed at
my table waiting for an
idea. Not a second

wind, mind. Emptiness,
achieved over a lifetime
of loss, leaves nothing.

No. It will be a
wind at my back, a sudden
push into open

water. I don’t mind
waiting. Other small craft dance
on the horizon.

Roger Williams Park

The poem resists
the intellect but beauty
escapes from the mind

and leads the poem
on a wild goose chase. That’s called
a happy ending.

Yesterday I broke
my promise to myself to
never enter the

park. Useless trees, me-
andering streams, carousels,
hill over dale, I

found myself in
the labyrinth, pleased as a
child with the beauty.

Pity

I avoid the news.
I read Aristotle The
Poetics but here

too terror, pity.
Even this cool customer,
thinking to save the

poets from Plato,
not to mention Nietzsche, says
pity is called for.