Her Perfumes

Been through some changes,
Oh yes been through some changes
in this floating world.

Nothing dulls the raz-
or teeth of necessity
(Death) in this floating

world. Laceration
of the heart. The beloved
flames out, oh flickers

on the things we shared —
how we loved this floating world.
Her treasured perfumes.

Your Eclipse

of the sun behind the moon,
filmy sheen of fire

crowning the disk of
darkness: people want to see
it, just to see it.

This is their only
chance and it is dangerous.
Looking your dear one

in the face, behold
the eclipse of your earthly
self — just to see it.

Widely Spaced Stones

The art of backing
up (down) the widely spaced stones
from thing to being

whereby to arrive
in the world as art — sparkling,
cold but inviting —

is worth the trouble.
Use whatever metaphor
makes it possible.


The mystery here
in the midst of becoming
Monterey tidepools

fill and empty, fill
and empty, starfish awash
in repetition

to my sense of things
beauty in the still moment
of transparency

the starfish between
the full and the overfull
to my sense of things


Hoodies up we watch
from the Memorial Bridge
snow flakes take a dive

into the silent
obsidian waters of
the Piscataqua.

The bridge trembles. Great
the undertow of insight.
We hang on the rail.

The vertigo of
being free and open to
our own nothingness.

Nothing Apocalyptic

Wildfires to windward,
and the crows fly into the
smoke sunlight-diffused

under the roof beams
of our imagined Heaven.
I lose track of them,

eyes stinging. No need
for apocalyptics, Earth
a gift slipping from

our grasp. Never was
in our grasp. Unbearable
clear-eyed Nirvana.

The Heart’s Promises

Broken promises
unspoken but binding, loss
of Earth’s kindnesses

all rooted in gift.
Imagined trade offs: wetland
community for

one’s own waterview.
Our neighbor’s privacies: Bath-
sheba at her bath.

We pay for free will
and pay and pay. The gift of
freedom is not free.