We glimpse some common object
or catch a stray scent,
and we are hurled back,
arriving in our past
the same instant we are retrieved,
as if the mind,
noting the discrepancy,
Memories are not snapshots
waiting for us in the brain’s dark folds.
We live them again,
one neuron sparking another
and another, the original band
reunited, setting a flimsy stage
on which we reappear.
This happens so fast
that sometimes we don’t know
where we went.
All we are given is the receipt:
a teasing brush of joy
we try to keep
and lose at once.
Photo by JR Korpa on Unsplash
An osprey dives over and over,
as many times as it takes to stay alive
and become incidentally superb.
Driving down the road near my house
I see them flying, a stunned fish in their claws,
as if nothing could be more ordinary
than a bird bringing home dinner.
Wings or brains,
we work with what we have.
I can’t snatch a meal from the ocean
at 50 miles an hour,
but I can plant a garden,
make stories out of thin air,
learn the difference
between an aspen and an alder.
Minute by minute,
even I can be splendid.
Sometimes they are not dead.
Sometimes they just live far away,
and even if you stopped by for a visit
what words would persuade them
of your betterment, the worth
you finally achieved?
What could they do but listen and nod,
knowing what they know?
I wish to thank the editors of OPEN magazine for publishing my poem “A Few Words for My Father” in their new issue.
Open: Journal of Arts & Letters has as its primary ambition to gather, publish, and popularize notable contemporary writing and other fine arts and to promote the work of its contributors to a varied and discerning audience in the English-speaking world and beyond.
Deep gratitude once more to editor Corey Cook for publishing my poem “Why Whales Breach” in today’s issue of Red Eft Review.
Photo by Sho Hatakeyama on Unsplash
I am delighted to have two of my poems, “Snow” and “Vultures” featured in the latest issue of Voice of Eve. This fine journal promotes the poetry of women.
“Voice of Eve is a web magazine dedicated to showcasing quality women’s poetry. Our hope is to build a community of women who can be empowered by sharing and reading each other’s work. We believe strength comes in unity with diversity and ultimately it is love that binds us.”
Editors: Richard Holleman and Sarah Rodriguez
You sign up for the discounts,
those measly wins you have to ask for.
The clerk eyes you, stalls, maybe calls the manager,
but your card is in your wallet,
you’ve got him on the ropes.
You can’t in fact keep up
with all you’re earned:
free coffee at McDonald’s, 10% off at Denny’s,
early bird specials at Golden Corral.
And all for just staying alive!
Paradoxically, the AARP magazine
(which comes uninvited each month)
will ward you off these places, advising healthier options.
Remember: your arteries are harder now
and don’t spring back anymore.
Are there others like me,
who opt out of the journal, who don’t care
to use the symptom checker or
read about scams at the gas pump,
who just want to call a truce with the world?
Don’t tell me how to fend off death,
tell me how to live with its arrival,
how to claim wonder,
how to stay open,
how to give myself away.