Quadrillion – Nectarine

Jammed my head
into the mud, let

my mind root around,
thoughts coming up

roses or thistles or
rutabagas,

dirty minded sure,
but what price

glory and riot
of color, scent,

her wandering
in my garden, pluck,

bringing to her lips,
sips, like nectar.


For dVerse Quadrille

Ezrasure

On Finding Ezra Pound, insane, locked outdoors in a cage in Italy after WWII
John Berryman, The Cage

This much is known: A bee winging it
at the resonance of quantum verse,
subatomic buzz weaponized
into stanzas, words in flight,
les mots juiced like wine –

can ride the fog of war from Idaho
to Pisa, then jackknife
out of the smoke into a cage
where he stings and swings
the cold bar blues.

Flying into rage, insults flying
like rain and sleet flying in the face
of reason, he’s St. Francis of the wasps
and hornets, nectar held tight between his knees,
praying in the sun to piss.

Unknown: how to equate
the velocity of scribbling, scrabbling
at the speed of unsound mind,
with reaching past sanity and breaking off combs
until detritus of poems run sticky in your hands.


For Jillys Where’s Ezra?

Salt Cod

A lifetime of trawling cod
from the Gulf of Maine –
a fisherman I knew

Would spray WD-40 on his knees.
Even better than motor oil he said –
and rub it in deep into the joints.

Gotta get some swing
back in the
hinges,

He said.
The body not a door
that closes with age,

But a boom that
sweeps and hauls out
over the waves

Year after year.
Close to the salt
but not of it.



For The Twiglets

Quadrille – Steep

Steep is the color
of my true love’s eyes,
cave cliffs
where swallows dive

Like falling love
at breakneck speed,
gravity redlines,
blinding, see

Courage,
shy wings bend
first close to her body,
then straighten, extending

Strength in curve and rise –
Grace. Precipice. Desire.


For dVerse Quadrille

Nose Job

Don’t answer the
door
it’s that
rhinoceros,
the one you shooed from your
dream last
night.

But now it’s
day and here you
are, thickly skinned, sloe-
eyed, wrinkled grey beauty, your
nose a triumphant
horn that makes a
point

of existence and a fighting
chance, though a heavy
lift, and sometimes
extinction
doesn’t sound that
bad.



For Jilly’s enjambment jam

Quadrille 71

The wind homeless, shaky,
panhandling for drink,
then January blows into the street
like Dillinger from a bank –
it’s murder, fire exchanged in cold blood,
everyone diving for cover.
The not-so-great depression –
sunshine bitter, on the dole,
brother can you spare a dime?


For dVerse Quadrille