ampersands

Posted: 05/13/2016 in house of blues, house of crazy

a cardinal and a rat at my feeder

dead porcelain doll in my hands.

people no one can see on the wraparound porch

like a row of ampersands.

the dark bird is back

bigger than before, not as big as when she’s done

what made you think, little chick,

that you were anyone?

the dark bird is back

meaner than before, and hungrier by half

what made you think, little one,

you were getting out of that?

the dark bird

the dark bird

she’s back.

red

Posted: 01/01/2016 in house of crazy, house of women

gw3in a gray house

under triangle trees

with blue leaves

 

i had a red cradle.

 

santa, i want

a red revolver,

birth control,

a red hat

and a fuzzbuster.

 

off to my new life

in my red car

with the fish on the back bumper.

it means,

 

fuck ’em and feed ’em fish heads.

 

i got red hair

and a white dog

with pointy ears

and a red collar.

 

gtfo,

lady coming through,

too cool by half for you,

and red

as red

can do.

_____

 

art by Gerda Wegener. written for my challenge at Real Toads.

i got two dogs.

one’s nice, one ain’t.

them two’s my babies–

called skillet and shotgun.

come springtime,

if the road weren’t muddy, sometimes i wouldn’t know where i’d been.

there’s my tracks, and theirs, one to either side.

skillet got burrs,

shotgun caught a pellet,

and my dress was torn, but i can’t recall how.

best as i can guess,

it was the same old song–

should’ve left the mean one home,

but one gets lonesome without the other,

so i turn ’em both loose

when the moon is full,

and the usual cautions don’t catch hold.

bus stop

Posted: 11/30/2014 in house of crazy, house of strangers

i was at the edge-of-Detroit Northland bus stop, minding my own,

reading the novel i’ve crawled into lately.

figures he’d pick me out.

figures he’d hassle the one middle-aged white gal in the whole place.

It was a long ten minutes

with his ugly face in mine.

with his nasty lips talking shit in my ear.

i can still hear his dumb-assed air of non-existent authority:

“i asked you a question! are you stupid?”

i would have loved to fight him,

and younger me would have.

instead i had to sit there saying “leave me alone” and wishing the bus would come.

I’m glad two young men finally helped me out,

let me escape.

they looked like trayvon martin or michael brown.

nassy-man looked like cliff huxtable.

just goes to show, somethin somethin, but i’m too jangled to put it clear.

meanwhile, i’ll have this cut on my cheek and nick on my lip

for a week or ten days, i guess,

to remind me of my vulnerability.

_____

a poem in three tenses for Real Toads mini challenge.

 

 

oliver larch

Posted: 10/25/2014 in house of crazy

don’t bother looking for oliver larch.

he didn’t die.

he’s been here with me,

counting frogs that fell from the sky.

mama washed out my mouth with soap

for tellin a lie,

but oliver larch

calls and cries

from under the snow where no footprints go–

with a look of surprise

instead of eyes.

______

herotomost says write about something that was “your thing” when you were young. I used to scavenge the bookshelves at home, in hopes of finding paperback books about strange and creepy (but supposedly true) occurrences like the disappearance of oliver larch, or rains of frogs, or such like. i found three or four, over time, and would curl up with my new find and devour it. i never forgot those stories, and have never lost my fascination with the unexplainable.

Summer

Posted: 09/14/2014 in house of weather, house of women

she came and stayed too long,

talked too much,

and was too touchy-feely,

coming around corners when i was half dressed

and short on sleep.

this morning it turned chilly and she was subdued,

sitting at the kitchen table with her hands around her coffee mug

and her suitcase open but empty on the bed in her room.

she will head south,

and i will have my house to myself again.

everybody likes her and she will light it up some other place,

while i feel a little guilty, but

mostly glad to see her gone.

_____

for real toads mini challenge.