Books Read in April

A Storm of Swords – George R. R. Martin

Here – Wisława Szymborska

Birds of America – Lorrie Moore

Kinder than Solitude – Yiyun Li

Zen to Done – Leo Babauta

Familiar – J. Robert Lennon

Utopia or Bust – Benjamin Kunkel

Plundered Hearts: New and Selected Poems – J.D. McClatchey

Van Gogh: The Life – Steven Naifeh, Gregory White Smith

Blinding Vol 1 – Mircea Cărtărescu

Nothing By Design – Mary Jo Salter

Desert – J.M.G. Le Clezio


Other Days

At times it is difficult looking out

Toward the woods see the path’s beginning

Knowing there are oxeye daisies blooming

Imagining songs of birds — the echo

Of a woodpecker and more than likely

Sit on a fallen tree and see it all

Something more infinite than the cosmos

But there will be no more walks through these woods


There is a list of loss inside of me

Memory blurs like ink on damp paper

Harder each day to cling to other days

Some interactions with beauty

Wait they said outside the door in minutes

The number 18 bus will arrive and

Take you away from Ravenna to the

Place you seek in one half hour the church

Of St Apollinaire in Classe will

Be before you relax through the windows

Cypress trees along the roadside — women

With bundles shoes in their hands — distant farms


Apse glowing green and gold — shadows of the

Columns across the wooden pews buzz of

Tourists — click of shutters a guided tour

Underneath perhaps whisper of angels





That winter when his body did not need

So many pills and he walked along Fifth

Downstairs at the Met — Morandi still life’s

Even now these years later walking down

A city street slower now he’d look up

See the juxtaposed buildings as they seem

To shimmer — dancing in the dying light

Like each of those so elegant still life’s


Wine (Assay)

Each day’s ending glass of wine and a search

Watch as the streetlights in between newly

Leaved trees begin with a dull glow and soon

Shadows separate from the trees — a bruised

Mauve above the hillside an aimless rain

Knocks on the darkening windows as if

Spirits seeking entry — familiar ghosts

After the rain window open — laptop

Screen dancing — photographs of paradise

A night bird calls imitating the world

Muted television flickers —  a splayed

Book of poetry it’s spine creased lies on

A dusty table —  avant-garde jazz plays

Sometimes soft sometimes screams of ecstasy

And at times just a piano the notes

Slip into the silence the room offers

in the few gone days

Alone — lost in the spaces between days

Remembering the night park bench and rain

In Washington Square and something like love

But it dies in screams that are never uttered

In the hunger that withered into the

Commonplace and spread on the air seeping

Into the night — a few items remain

Left in drawers —  a single dress dangles

From a wire hanger scent of powder

And perfume fading in the few gone days

Fever Dreams

Angels their feathers dulled and clotted with dust

Haunted his dreams – stragglers on the old road

Leading from Eden to the world — some nights

He’d come awake sure he lay on the floor

Of the Scuola Grande di San Rocco

Tintoretto’s angels dancing above

In the dim light feeding Elijah or

Watching angels perched high above Jacob

As he climbs and turning see Moses strike

The rock and water spouts  and his light rays

Reach Ezekiel his red robe flowing


All of it in fever dreams — hoarse whispers

Bed wet from night sweats sheets in knots and ghosts

Whisper from the shadows  — unknown prophets

A life lived outlasting friends and lovers

Late afternoon on a cold Spring Day

Branches sway like lovers slow dancing to

West Coast jazz — the wind against the window

Watching cars travel uphill on crooked streets

Still visible through trees that have not leaved

Newly green tree tops with a few robins

Ball game on the radio the closers

Song playing — the light enchants as if some

Sorceress lit the world – petals fall from

Last weeks flowers — cheers from the radio

Within the light views of the infinite