On Your Trail

If I had time to burn

I’d wage a campaign

against pretentious

self-help gurus,

peddlers in promissory notes

hinting at lavish


delivering only dry

cardboard cutout results.

Beware of all the snake oil!

Who can possibly know

the unique demands

drawing you out,

into yourself?

This soul making,

not much of a day spa –

more like playing

capture the flag,


Oh, go ahead,

spew forth your


you darling


I’ve never been

much for violence.

In all seriousness,

I really do not have the time.

Too much wasted on

firewater and grand schemes.

This impostor complex of mine

a worthy enough opponent,

keeping me pinned to the mat

well beyond any three count.

Enough of all that.

I must be going.

The trail is fresh.

She passed this way.

I can feel it.

(Vamos, vamos, vamos…)

Cosmic Wake

It won’t last forever.

The stone, dust, and ice

already gently raining down

to the surface below.

This period of public morning

a fitting royal tribute.

The remains evenly spread out,

so perfectly arranged

by Queen Ops.

A spectacular display

this wake for Chrysalis,

their lost daughter torn apart

by unrelenting tidal forces.

She will be reigned back in

and her ashes scattered

across the surface

of King Saturn.

One by one,

the slow moving

viewing line of

poorly dressed spacecraft

swing by

to pay our respects

on their way out

to even colder

more distant realms.

After the viewing,

in hushed voices,

each of the mourners

can’t help but marvel

at just how lovely she looks.

Cosmic Wake written in response to the inaugural Amplification Effect, a group exercise exploring symbolic material. The symbol explored was a ring that is not a ring. Join in this Sunday for the next group symbolic exploration.

Bad Apple

Dismissed out of hand

for a few years.

Quaint at best,

A nuisance for certain.

But certainly not


Slander assured

type casting

as the bad apple,

a sinister label

he wore casually like denim.

It did not so much stick,

but instead, formed

a protective shield

to operate behind,

in isolation.

Oh, the outlandishness

of his unscripted


It’s nothing at all

they would tell their superiors

who questioned

the unexpected

recurrences of chaos

boomeranging on them,

upsetting their proverbial

apple cart.

No, really, in unison

they harmonized,

attempting to reconstruct

the comfort of their denial,

it’s nothing at all.

Ode to Demeter

Though You’ve departed

I’ll hum the sacred intervals

through these dark days.

Stacking wood needed

to fight back the bitter chill,

a fraudulent squatter

inhabiting Your absence,

I’ll soon take comfort

from a cup of hot cereal,

a faint echo

of ancient sacraments

shared on the steps at Eleusis.

Foolish how Your Greatness

taken for granted

until You turn from us

to find again

Your divine daughter.

Though You’ve departed

I’ll hum the sacred intervals

through these dark days.

The Push and the Pull

Even here,

nestled far away

in the mountains,

what pulls at the sea

pulls at my salty

water logged body.

You there, boney white moon,

hiding behind the trees –

you not so sneaky culprit.

Regardless of phase,

cloud cover,

daytime or night,

a great tidal dance

you conduct,

rising across beaches,

surging within these veins

(and not once, but twice daily).

I will go about this business,

stack my firewood,

then stir the stew.

Meager my praise

when life itself

the perpetual applause

for your unending encore.

A Road You Will Not Travel

Hospital Road by Richard Reeve

Miles stretch out through these hills

like a piece of pulled taffy.

I’ve checked the markers

with the odometer.

It isn’t so.

Although five miles

feels like ten,

you learn to get used to it.

There’s no sense being in a rush,

that just makes things worse.

It always takes longer

than expected –

so I tell folks,

add fifteen minutes

to every trip.

The same can be said

of this lingering ache

that I first noticed

after your funeral.

It should be gone by now.

It isn’t so.