The cloud is a rippling white balloon suspended in a blue so sweet my teeth ache. I carry the cloud on a string, blind to the rainbow at my back.
"No precipitation expected today.”
Only the squawky talk and tap of the street crows, who pick at the popcorn a neighbor left for them; the birds dodge slow-moving cars with the insouciance of rock stars.
No participation expected today.
It’s Christmas and there’s nothing to do but sidestep thoughts of the year to come and consume the body of a blindsided bird slathered in rosemary and lemon rind.
100 percent prestidigitation today.
Time hovers with the patience of the tagged and tortured, waiting for permission to move on, and, permission granted, travels at the speed of the joyless.
morning lines #157
There are cardinals in the sky,
red-feathered and biretta-capped,
some avian, others ecclesiastical,
out of sight, these days, but
somehow on my mind.
morning lines #156
Here it is Friday,
like all the rest,
without the rest,
but with the morning magic
even as hope heaves a sigh
and wonder walks out the door.
morning lines #155
Now you write something. Picture yourself in a can-opened Airstream on the desert valley’s deadly floor. You’re exposed to the thin sexless air; the chill settles into your femurs … forever. But the night sky with its diamond-dusted blanket of black warms your eyes, as you drift off. Soon, the earth clicks into place and light undoes dark. The desert’s morning tongue unfurls a parched but perfect new day, where punishing sun, sand, stinging insects, and the beauty of a million wind-sculpted minimoons coalesce. Now stop writing.
morning lines #154
She craved a life lying spread-
eagle on warm volcanic sand,
not making snow angels in Ottawa
with a wan Canadian man.
morning lines #151
Nothing’s pretty on me anymore ’cept my toes,
their dumb-numb piano-hammer music of
forgiving—a pardon to my face, which walked away
years ago in a huff. I could’ve argued and pleaded
like an alarmed lover. Instead, I let it slip away,
my unconvincing grip going slack. My toes, doing
tenfold the duty, erased, as if stamping out,
all memory of that hand-some face.
morning lines #150
She wanted to live a life with the animals,
all soft fur against slippery skin,
inhuman haunch meeting rosewater thigh
A silent silver knowing,
like silk entering the veins
Playful mornings after food,
on the damp woolen ground,
endless afternoons of rolling, weeping,
and licking wounds
She wanted to die with the animals,
but only if they were ready to go
morning lines #149
The arms of forgetting pile up
around me in a jumble of
fusiforming phantoms. As each
dream from the night turns to vapor,
another arm is thrown on the heap.
The arms are smooth and
fleshy beige, like tubers or
dead fruit on the vine.
morning lines #148
Every morning, I stare at the desert mountain
in my living room, the painting I can’t finish.
Finishing it would take me too far from the sand,
rock, ocotillo, and honey mesquite that allow me
to breathe, that blow me up like a balloon and
release me into the secular cerulean, across the
only landscape that loves me back.
morning lines #147
maybe I want to get
out of bed and
read this with coffee
as the dog sneezes
and we both listen
in the queer quiet
to the plastic green fan
I set up not to cool
the already cool room
but to make noise and
nascent noise and
in their sleepless
morning lines #146
red swept through her
not like blood
not for the sake of Christ
not because she raged, slapped, and swore;
red was her transmission fluid
red was all she said
morning lines #145
leave the love and laughter to the dead man,
like a surgeon in the night, he holds each
with hush-steady hands and the confidence
of death itself
morning lines #144
I brought out parchment to bake the scones on.
Instead I wrapped myself in it and waited
for the UPS man to come with string
and a gentle hand.
morning lines #143
I won’t waste the season’s last
raspberries on you, pink-red pouches,
so sweet I could weep.
They ache to be tongue-fucked.
Instead, I’ll kiss their eyelashes and lick
their tears before dropping them,
one by one, deep into my mouth,
past bitter and fear.