I have my mother’s eyes, my father’s jaw. In the mirror they judge me as I try on phrases:

Mom, Dad, I’m.
I love.

Jada watches me take the suit of well-worn lies from my closet. “I can’t,” I tell her.

“An anonymous, blunt instrument wielded by a government department”


, , ,

When Angus O’Sonnell says jump, Cavanaugh doesn’t ask how high. He’s the one responsible for figuring out lift and acceleration and the effects of the gravitational field on the jumping body. So when Angus gives him a task on the night of February 22, Cavanaugh just nods and gets it done. And he gets it done in Vegas, because if you are going to be spending an… an… obscene is really the word for it, but Cavanaugh also thinks this is a blasphemous amount of money. An abomination of money. If you’re going to do that, you might as well do it in the cesspit of corruption and wealth that is Las Vegas, Nevada. Continue reading


The rain
casts a shadow
of dry earth under eaves
where – huddled flat against the wall –
I wait

is falling like
the sound of raindrops, drip?
by drop? below the surface of the day?
And gone?

I hold
inside my throat
a dream of winter’s end –
of fog-dressed fields below blue skies
at dawn.

The clouds
are calving, damp
and gravid with new rain;
I turn my face up to the sky
to watch.

the valley hides
a trestle track; the train
chatters past the stream where cows wade
and drink.

The rain
is falling like
a dream of winter’s end;
I turn my face up to the sky
and drink.

Here’s a little cinquain for this month’s poetry slam at yeah write. It’s a garland cinquain, because I’m an overachiever like that: the sixth stanza is made up of lines from the first five, in order.

Private Obscenity



Monday’s tongue is rough velvet. She likes to fuck
Standing up, wants me to fill
Her mouth with all six
Inches of hypothetical cock, while she maintains the fiction
That it’s eight, spitting curse words
As she gives me what I tell her I need

Tuesday’s got a need
Or two of her own. She wants to fuck
Me with words,
A cunning linguist, that one, who can fill
The empty spaces with a running chatter of fiction
While counting syllables, two four six.

Wednesday’s thirty, going on six
Likes to beg for each need
Wants me to help maintain the fiction
That she’s my little one, to fuck
Her carefully, fill
Her with only flowery words

Thursday’s got nothing but words
No repeated thrust of six
Inches – or was it eight – no hole to fill
She wants to be what I need
Wants to fuck
Wants that fiction

Friday’s the best at fiction
The best at choosing her words
Like cock, like cunt and fuck
But quitting time’s at six
And later I’ll need
More, to have my fill

Saturday has time to kill; to fill
My world and turn it into fiction
She has only one need:
To hear the right words
I close my eyes and count to six
And don’t think about how much I’d like to fuck

I fill my hand, I fuck
Myself with fiction and for a moment I’m not one but six
These days I need more than just words.

Sestina: Warrens

I searched everywhere: behind the oak tree with the blemish
On its trunk, and the old cypress
Where the tractor sits at the end of the path where we got lost
Playing one summer day; me the fox and you the rabbit
Changing roles turn and turn about like the fluid
Sunlight that made long shapes of us on the ground

It must have gone to ground
Hiding its face like covering up a blemish
Or a beauty-mark, thick pinkish fluid
Coverup, then powders with names like “autumn” or “cypress”
Tested, each one, on a caged rabbit
With dark eyes, hardly born before it’s lost

I’m not sure how to find it, if it’s even lost
I’ve covered every inch of ground
Sniffed it out like the fox and the hound – I mean, the rabbit
That ran before us, vanishing into a blemish
In the mossy bank under the cypress
Where the creek huddled, more mud than fluid

Perhaps it can’t be found; it takes on more shapes, changing and fluid
And every time you find it, it just gets lost
Again, hidden away where the cypress
Makes shapes like lace on the ground
And the hills rise, each a blemish
In this evening field there’s not a single rabbit.

I am the rabbit
In the moon, I am the everchanging fluid
Shape of things, look at my white face without blemish
And hide your eyes or you’ll be lost
Just another stain on the ground
In the shadow of the cypress

The Romans lined the way with Cypress
Elm, pine, and hunted the woods clean of rabbit
Deer, partridge and all the small creatures who lived on the ground
So too the trout were chased from the fluid
Streams and rivers; we too are lost
The map is clean of path, road, blemish

Our love letters are written on the trunk of the cypress; they have faded to a blemish
The rabbit that roamed the fields has dug a maze and become lost
I cannot stand my ground in this light, silver and fluid.

Another sestina, prompted by six words from the sadistic editors.



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