Thursday, November 16, 2017

Les petits riens

Je ne suis pas dragueuse
mais de tête sérieuse
pourtant quoique je lise

il n’y a que des bêtises
qui me viennent à l’esprit
comme le petit rien que tu m’as dit

Les crises globales me font de la peine
la violence et la souffrance
ni s’arrêtent ni se freinent

Pourtant quand je danse
la musique m’embrasse
je regagne la paix, la joie de l’enfance

Et les petits riens que tu me dis
chassant la douleur
soulagent mon cœur
quand le jour me fait face
et la grâce laisse ses traces

Monday, November 13, 2017

So There, Baudelaire

I’ve been told I have a beautiful spleen
by a doctor in a white coat
who was supposed
to know about these things

When he told me I was strapped
to a gurney in a small
windowless room planning
my own funeral aloud
to shiny and flat objects poking and placid
tilted this way and that listening

When he told me he smiled
with his cheeks which grew round and rosy
as the cheeks of a schoolboy on a sled
hissing through the snow
down the biggest hill one more time
after being called home for supper

When he told me it seemed as if
it made up for everything else
he would say and I felt so happy
I skipped out the door into the sun

to shout to the stars hidden by the light
“I have a beautiful spleen!”

Tuesday, November 7, 2017



                                                                             golden pears mottle
                                                                                 rain gleams on vacated streets
                                                                                     crisp! the autumn wind

Friday, October 20, 2017

Still Life with Flowers

Adriaen van Utrecht, Vanitas Still Life with Flowers and Skull, 1642
Happy Birthday, Daddy!
You never gave me away in marriage.
Guess it’s because you wanted me to yourself.
Our little secret, right Daddy? After Momma
was asleep, you’d visit me. You and Momma
did things like pay the bills and cook—she’d make
the mashed potatoes while you barbecued.
But she never understood you,
did she Daddy? At least that’s what
you’d tell me. How nothin’ what she did
was right for you, but somehow, late at night,
I was right for you, wasn’t I Daddy?
You’d tell me how I was special.
Well, I knew that because I was sick so much
and home alone. Momma did good
works during the day and took classes
at night. Later she’d teach in the day.
And sleep while you drank your martinis
and typed long letters on your IBM Selectric.
But after your last drink, you’d come
see me, wouldn’t you, Daddy? me and
my stuffed animal friends. You’d settle
yourself by me in my white canopy bed and tell me
all the problems of the world, of how
no one understood you. No one but me,
right Daddy? Your parents never did
understand you. No one but me, right Daddy?
And every night while Momma slept, we’d visit,
wouldn’t we Daddy? Isn’t that why when
you were dying you grabbed my head
and thrust your tongue down my throat
when Momma wasn’t looking? I was a
married woman, with two children,
Daddy. Momma had devoted herself
to you night and day for years. Publicly,
you professed your love for her, didn’t you
Daddy? But at night, and the last night of life
before you went to sleep for good, you wanted
me, didn’t you Daddy? Like the old days.
Only this time, Daddy, I remembered. And this
time I washed my mouth out good.
This time, I said never again.