On Waiting for my Wife to Return from Surgery

The surgeon’s hands
And her hands
Knitting, darning, mending
The world –
Frayed tendons
Like stray thoughts

Listening to
The slow oxygen
Of a spinning wheel,
Spooling anesthetic its

Click your needles
Three times
And return her to
Scarves and sutures
Shawl cross stitches,
Gut tied in knots
But not wrenched.


You never forget
Adjusting the eyepiece,
How it took a moment
For your gaze to relax
Its focus,

Allowing Saturn, its rings
To come into view.
The shock
Of heaven
You were not expecting.

So you must always return –
Cannot say goodbye –
To hoping for this world,
To catch just one
More glimpse,

To try and memorize
Each split of light
The moment before it’s gone,
And commit its name
To heart,

Then write haphazard lines
Across the sky,
Words stumbling
From star to star
Tracing memory’s faint glimmer

Of what you hope
Was truth.




Three Word Wednesday is shutting down. Final prompt was “Goodbye, Memorize, Haphazard.” Some of my best writing came from this site, even if I didn’t always link back. I will miss it, but do not say goodbye to what it has given me.

Bugging You

My intentions
Might seem honorable,
But beware
They could be infectious –

If I bite you,
Mad with passion,
You may get heartworm,
A desire you can’t shake
Working its way toward
Your soul.

If I nibble
Delicious poems
Around your ears,
Bookworms might unleash,
Conspirators to keep you awake
Just one more chapter
At night.

And if I feast
On the light in your eyes,
How the glowworms
Will show their slow way
Through the caverns
Of your dreams.

Can you welcome these all
Instead, as friends,
To your imagination’s garden?
Bringers of air, mineral
And looseness
To the soil?

Murky, Navigate, Organic

I’m a happy mudshark
(Family: Squalidea,
Genus: Backyardus,
Species: Lawnranger)
In this summer heat.

Squishy swimming
Through cool, wet dirt,
Finned above the grasses,
Yapping the crickets all
Toothy and open-mawed.

I murk about
As I wish,
Navigate dead reckoning
By sprinklers I am
Peaty of gills
Organic and muck-blooded.

Why tell you all this?
Beware the
Toe taking, the
Catch me dogfish
If you can.

Late Breaking

The glass arrow
Of my intent
Shatters into the sky,
Ruby blue splinters a
Kaleidoscope rocket
Breaking apart,
Confetti of mirrors
Don’t cut yourself
On the rain.

Purpose is too fragile
Against the hard distance
To the sun.


A shadow self
Half a tempo out of true,
Heartbeat and breath
Lopsided and blurred,
Dragging a shade behind.
How I am here,
But not all at once,
Like a kindred presence
That must have a different life
Than this.
Yet each possible self
Jockeys for the moment
Of truth, that test of when
I might lock eyes
My love, with you.

The Heat

Unrepentant wind.
Sky, impervious to correction.
Winter’s crimes –
The sun incorrigible
In its hateful theft of light.

A gaping hole in the year,
Left open to the blowing snow.
The weeks like jail bars
That failed to hold
The heat.


A heart endlessly elaborating
To hands,
Its voice murmuring rhythms
For weaving into the world.

Dappled with redemption
A brindled song unspools,
Its hues tangled
Light and dark.

Winding away impurities,
Bending filth and ash
into clarity and light,
Lyrics knit from love.


The bones in my back
Creak and crack,
To unfold into wings.
Steam bent ribs
Shivering themselves
To splinters
Broken for flight.

The Angel of incidence
Equals the Devil of refraction —
An arrow
Fletched with feathers of light
Shattered against ugly
As sin, physik
Ricocheted outward
Reflecting what is hunched


Save our souls, those of us lashed windward.
I’ve tempted the Coriolis of your anger —
Unleashing Cyclones and whirlwinds,
Glass popping, timbers snapping,
The wanton release of wildfire:

The underwhirl of a dark planet —
The spin of its mass
And specific gravity
Pulling waves and wind
Into furious alignment.

The aftermath
As impossible to calculate
As the beforemath.
The weight of all the ash
Drifting underfoot, the last snuffling sparks.