December 10, 2017

What Then


Photo: Ramon Guzman, 2017


What then

Of fallen leaves on sidewalks
Matted patchwork of crimsons, ambers, rusts
Faded chlorophyll

Of longer nights
Cool ponderous hours, minutes, seconds
Fading memories

Of an aging owl perched high in an Oak
Experienced eyes thinking, seeing, remembering
Fleeting opportunities

Of a moonless sky
Vast space, constellations, possibilities
Certain death

And continued rebirth



October 29, 2017


Photo: Ramon Guzman, 2016


Awareness of what the heart holds and what it doesn’t
What the body sustains and what it won’t
Over sediment of disappointments passed
Ahead of content echoes

Reassurance is unspoken
Because experiences calm the mind
From the abrasion of memories
That once sang with life

And though the body eventually heals
It is with the whole of conscience
That the elements continue to shape our skin
Into our older selves



May 24, 2015


Hallway, Pdreijnders CC BY-SA 3.0

Hallway, Pdreijnders CC BY-SA 3.0


Words resonate in ether

Until I remember their context.

They become ghosts when I come close to forgetting them,

But my mind pulls them back into consciousness

to flicker and fold.


In dim light they describe you,

Your movements, your sounds.

In suspended disbelief I smell your skin,

The heat emanating from your body when I rubbed your back,

Back for a touch, then rubbed away by a fool’s dust.


Until words recreate your shape, your being,

I’m cheated by their shells.

Words can only haunt

Like ghosts that linger at the end of a hallway,

According to the darkness.


Though reason pulls me forward I reach behind

To touch dim light beyond dust.

I know that I shouldn’t believe in ghosts,

But I linger in cheap words

That imitate you.


March 2, 2015

Maxim #21

Accept that on some days your hair is gonna do what it’s gonna do. — Literophanes

February 1, 2015

Somewhere Gentle Man

Photo: The Lonely Sky, Unmesh (CC BY SA 3.0)

Photo: The Lonely Sky, Unmesh (CC BY SA 3.0)


Gentle memories:

A smile,

A laugh,


Voice of your life.


Chance as natural as breath

Allowed our paths to cross,

And a few gentle words

Were always enough to keep us connected

Until the next random meeting.


Today chances evade me

And I grasp for just one more.

Through overgrown landscapes

I search,

But I can’t find you.


A long exhale

Tips the gentle balance of chance

And drifts into our random places.

Our continuous conversation

Fades into silence.


Following the echoes of our crossing

I can only think about the randomness

Of our gentle moments,

The chances given to us to share

In the simplicity of life’s humors.


I inhale, holding my breath to respond.

And when I can’t hold it any longer,

I reluctantly accept that memories are just placeholders

Until I breathe another chance with you,

Somewhere gentle man.



In memory of my gentle friend, Mike Insidioso.



January 25, 2015

Silent Underwood

Art: Old Typewriter, Dan Butler

Art: Old Typewriter, Dan Butler



Silent Underwood tell me your writer’s secrets –

Solid frame that you embraced silently in 1942,

Chassis as black as the night you kissed him before he left,

Your clandestine emotions as impenetrable as your metal frame.


Whispering keys,

Touched by fingers,

Typed letter after letter,



Sentiments that bound you both together from worlds apart.


Your carriage advanced your affairs to the end of a line,

Anticipating a manual return to avoid losing a thought,

A hopeful return,

A sacred agreement.


But when the bell sounded,

The thought was lost.

The sentence paused without a period.


And in the chrome of the carriage,

Was the partial expression

Of someone no longer there,

Whose fingers stopped silently.


Underwood saved from the shed of a dead writer,

Where did your letters go?

Under your dust,

Would defeated fingerprints still linger on keys

As the only remaining proof of your secrets

For me to gather from paperless silence?


January 18, 2015

Until the Red Light Changes

Photo: Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0, Traffic Light

Photo: Creative Commons BY-SA 3.0, Traffic Light


stopped at a red light

I navigate random thoughts

such as the politics of things uncertain





when the red light changes

an occupation will come and one will go


a life will gain new meaning worth waiting for

while inattentive commuters continue to wait


a heart burdened will sigh and breathe for the first time

a heart will stop

a heart will fall in love


at the red light vaporous thoughts linger

in the glow of brake lights


I suppose all drivers eventually stop

and pause – to think

about prolonged uncertainties

and momentary certainties

until the red light changes



January 11, 2015

body at momentary rest

Photo: Creative Commons

Photo: Creative Commons


on a warm beach winds blow from the East

in a new direction inspired by expectations unmet

touching my other side unfamiliar with its force

combing through my hair


the tides that lap have traveled

a thousand miles across the Atlantic


washing my feet from the residue of experience


and sand free from gravity

meets me in salt air

as if to exfoliate sun-aged skin

and reduce me to simplicity again


December 21, 2014

Writing Late on a Winter Night





Words like flurries dust the December ground,

Unsettled only by the blades of ice skaters in the park.

A lone plastic holly berry sits at the bottom of subway stairs

Before the F train that carries riders in Santa suits.


Artificial firs aglow in high rise windows.

Colored bulbs adorn fire escapes.

Ornamented garland drapes the railings of brownstones.

A hanging star flashes from a sublevel apartment window.


Above the graffiti patchwork covering the heights,

The aged sky is hushed with sweet bakery smells.

No echoes of horns, or sirens, or protesting voices

Fall with the flurries.


Inside the dog is asleep on an uneven floor,

Undisturbed by the banging of pipes

Or midnight words that fall from my fingers on keys

As I write sipping apple brandy and bitters.


November 30, 2014

Hopefully …

Photo: Creative Commons

Photo: Creative Commons


Hopefully is a deceptive word

Used too many times for useless arts,

Inherent in its promise with a possibility of failure.


It’s a promise that orbits without connecting,

Embowed around my space, time, subjects, affections.

Our relationship remains distant and constant.


The constant moon in the winter sky

Extends his exaggerated brightness

In the surrounding empty darkness.


He’s the glowing illusion of hopefully,

Just a barren pocked landscape borrowed by sunlight,

Sunlight that steals any hopeful lunacy of poems.


Then as bright as the sound of the word – hopefully

Spoken again and again,

The moon spins himself past my horizon again.



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