New Post
Blog: Bittersweet
This one was a gift. SNOW DAY Three inches in an hour, thick and greasy. Suddenly the hills are dangerous mountains. No work! A risk management decision. So home mid week without a plan. Blue light. The natural radiation of the earth fights back And melts the streets in an hour. The winter Puts it all back. Tea maybe, yes, Earl Grey Besides the window. My neighbors with The Jack Russell laugh through the grove Across the way. The lonely little girl from Up the street kicks by, pushing the pink Bicycle she always rides,. I remember other snows. Daughters flushed and laughing in the chill. A son paying serious attention to his snowballs. A wife in a Norwegian sweater with cut steel buttons. A black and white collie pouncing through back yard. And further, Kissing a Black Irish girl with mouth full of snow: warm and soft and thrillingly cold. Peppermint schnapps and sleds on the best hill in town. Further. The boy in the blue coat And jockey cap at the edge of the corner lot Seeing it for the first time. The very first time. Snow comes a long way to find us. Water put together A long time ago. Cold that's been there forever. And so the evening comes down as the snow slats From the east. A few lights pass on the boulevard. The house has been empty now for a long while. A kind of camping out, it's like. Snow, silence And an early bedtime. Continue »
New Post
Blog: Bittersweet
ITHACA I don't come this way often Because over there my dead friend Sits with his paper and his oversized cup On a tender June morning. Soon, I'll arrive And we'll talk about everything. And over there – right across the street- My dead wife leans back against an elegant pin-oak Crisp in her favorite camel hair coat. Click. Sylla and Charybdis. One taking 9 bites And the other sucking down great volumes. They say it's the Journey. That it's the getting there That matters. And I mean, when you do, it's a few Rocky knobs and some pigs and fishermen. True The wife is there and she was beautiful and faithful. At least in memory now. And maybe that's it. Memory where everything's better, bigger And all evened out and misty and those Gold lights of the houses ahead are love The only clear thing that matters In the drenched evening, No matter how much it hurts. Continue »
New Post
Blog: Bittersweet
Midwinter Heather Ross Miller Nailed to my house, gray deer skulls with branches reaching like candelabra, racks of flame antlered through the dark, breathings from old woods, old hunts. I used to chase deer down to kill. But obeyed the laws: do not hunt deer in the still night, or bait them with grain, or shine big lights in their eyes, all quietly evil terrors. If you bought my deer meat back then, would you want to know where found, how killed, and who I was? I'd say, Look: hands, eyes, boots, bones, slippery piles of gut. I'd recommend: rush rush and hang your kettles over hot low fires, stir savory old mysteries with your old licked spoons. I'd say, Look: this keeps well against bitter cold. Continue »
New Post
Blog: Bittersweet
This is quite new. THE WHITE SKY by Franz K. Baskett “We must speak by the book …” Hamlet, V, i. The backhoe putts idly beside the pit, A giant, yellow scorpion. The gravedigger Is busy with his work. No stoup of liquor, But Christian talk-radio blares From the short dump truck. I can’t resist. "Whose grave is this, sir?" "Mary McBryde", he says without looking Up from where he shims a thick Steel plate on each side of the hole. "Lady died on Monday, which is good For the family. Have it all in a week." He smooths the red clay sides With a small, square spade. It wouldn’t do to have it stick. The crisp stones march up the hill; The artificial flowers shudder. In the dry August wind and diesel air, Death’s an industrial thing. And you, there, not ten feet away, Black granite stone on grey marble base White silk flowers in a bronze bullet. My roses flop down, crimson on black While the sky blazes white with grief. You used to say to keep the faith. I keep it here. for J. W. 1936 - 2003 Continue »