tooth and claw

sweet kitty cat
nothing but love
for her humans
and even her dog
little gray bundle
of purrs and cuddles


you’re also a cat
and you cross her
then any offense
or minor faux-paw
earns a harsh reply
and swift retribution

oh my

suddenly my house
is a wild kingdom
where panthers roar
and leap to attack
fangs are bared
claws unsheathed
true beast revealed

😳 …kitty?

50 Ways

The problem is just what you suppose,
she said to me,
Gotta get that sucker to decompose
As well, you don’t want it exposed
and robbed…you see?
There must be
50 ways to rot your groundhog.
50 ways to rot your groundhog.

Just stick it in a can, Stan,
or toss it in a bucket, Chuck!
Nail it to a tree, Lee,
Good enough for me!

Put it in a bin, Lynn,
or covered in a pot, Scott.
Stick it in the creek, Deke.
Pretty soon, you’ll see.

Just dig it a grave, Dave.
Put it in with the ants, Grant!
Make way for worms, Herm!
Watch it slowly cease to be.

It really isn’t all that hard
to break it down.
Just find a space in your backyard
and go to town.
There is no need to end up scarred
or wear a frown.
There must be
50 ways to rot your groundhog.
50 ways to rot your groundhog.

in the room

a child again
i am ushered into the room
told to sit and hush
as darkness thickens

a flash of light
followed by three more
gold, green, blue, red
feathered creatures banter
and break into song

now dozens, hundreds
spin and flutter above me
weaving intricate patterns
of sound and color

a zeppelin of gleaming white
descends from nowhere
bearing clusters of melody
cloying feathery sweets

now tendrils of vine appear
capped by orchids and lilies
riotous in shades of rose
writhing and ululating
as drumbeats rise, ominous

a crescendo of storm and magma
suddenly the room is bursting
with song and feather
as every outlandish entity returns
here, swarming above me

until, finally, peace
the darkness lifts
and i am permitted to depart
carrying with me
the indelible memory
of the room


if a tree falls in the wood
and no ear hears the crash
shall we call this “silence”?

if a scarlet cardinal sings in the brush
and no lady bird responds to his song
shall we brand this “defeat”?

if a poet writes words on a page
and no heart receives their meaning
shall we name this “failure”?

or shall we say
the world is full
of trees and birds
pages and hearts
and time is full
of tomorrows?


driving along God’s belly
on the highway we shaved
through sacred tummy-hair
flowing within Spirit’s breath
blown along by the Divine

me? I’m just one of those
symbiotic microscopics
living on (in as) God’s bod
like a wriggly bacterium
or a fast flea on the move

watching all my fellow teeny
insectoid avatars motor by
always chasing a destination
but never anywhere apart
from where we need to be


and god placed a firmament between us
to separate you from me
and god saw that it was good

but the god who did this
was a wicked and tricky god
not the one we were hoping for

and it was not good
and we found ourselves

so now we’ve got this firmament
holding us forever apart
this solid abyss dividing our touch
insulating us from one another’s warmth

and the truth doctor says let it be
it is what it is and you can’t change it now

but i want my index finger to be a needle
to prick and pierce this heartless veil
to rip it end to end
so your cool light will shine on me
and my heat will thaw your frozen soil


i want to know
if you’re ok
i truly do

and besides that
i really want
you to be ok

but the truth is
i care more about
whether we’re ok

above all
our relationship
must be smooth

if we’re ok
i can put up
with your pain

(and as far
as i know
so can you)

if we’re ok
your suffering
is not mine

and i’d really
prefer to keep it
that way

tell me:
what is wrong
with that?


If I can’t live forever then
maybe I just want
to be preserved
precisely and indestructibly
in memory like stone.

Mental records that will endure
for time beyond reckoning –
beyond my reckoning, anyway.
That’s all I ask.

Except memory doesn’t work
like that.

It gets worn away, little by little,
eroded and distorted,
stretched thin and transparent,
until eventually
the matrix in which it’s preserved,
the body and mind
of the one who remembers,
dies too.

I can imagine that.
The death of everyone
who really knew me
is well within my reckoning.
So that’s not enough.

Perhaps I need to build something
that will last for generations:
a legacy.

Progeny worthy of my name.
A body of research or art.
A corporation,
or charity,
or cult.

My personal handmade fossil.
My own lovingly crafted tombstone.
My life’s work:
a regal marker for my grave.

Or could I possibly trust
that the impression
my life has made upon the universe
will be preserved somehow –
embraced in a way that matters,
without needing me to arrange it?

Preserved without
my own self-conscious carving,
my own self-centered craving.

Preserved without
my own self.


thanks for nothing
i mean

i’m grateful for emptiness
that is

thank god i realize that nothing exists
no that’s not right

i’m thankful for the occasional glimpse
of reality as it is:

each unique and glorious incarnation
whether breeze or comet
ancient tortoise or human child
empty of an independent self
yet held in perfect love
within the whole

yes that’s it
thanks for everything