Saturday, June 30, 2012


For Nan Sea Drew

I came of age
in this place
a coming of age
to come.

A hand at my back
leads me there
A clip
A ship
across the water
A banging drum.

I won't regret
sitting in this sun
eating this croissant.
But I will reject
Too many voices
Go. Feel. See.

When a car almost
hit you in the legs
is that how it went?
I had just told you
about Ephron
getting struck by a bus
and regretting
not eating
her last doughnut.

It wasn't the bus that got her.

I wouldn't mind
if it was the sea
who in the end
got me.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Workshop Marginalia

Just reread one of my comments on a friend's workshop piece. You've really got to love writing workshops. Taken out of context, my quote goes:

"I also like how you continue to build up the Biblical references and the thoughts/anxieties/curiosities about the Holy Spirit. Whom we find out is Pooh Bear! What a cute Heavenly Spirit. God wouldn’t that be nice. But seriously, there’s a building tension throughout the piece. Incredible that you could do that with an old man with  dementia and a teddy bear. Bravo."

Thursday, June 21, 2012

you can throw a piece

Golden goblets
the cupboards
held possessions
hung with care 
This is the coolest thing
no, indescribable
there are no words
so don’t say it.
When melancholia hit
there was nothing to do
but sit 
on the edge and cry.
What am I saying
you could throw yourself
off the side
and you did
you almost died.
We spent the night
nursing you
I don’t speak of it much,
do you?
In the morning, 
rode on the back of a motorcycle
to lay in the sun
on a “pay by towel” basis.
Had my picture taken
thank god for glasses
my eyes were shaken.
Threw your hat
into the wake
said goodbye
Take this man
And then alone
just beast and being
was it You who sent
such a prehistoric go-between?
to shake him 
from his reverie
Keep in mind,
guilt and fear
flow from love.
dark and deep
you can throw a piece
but sink the whole ship
if peace is what you seek.
The day my bracelet
snapped off on the stern
I knew something like this 
would happen.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

it haunts

the lights are white
making the clouds passing by
look like smoked ellipses.
In a garden
on Elizabeth Street
at twilight
I thought of Copenhagen
and warehouses
and yellow painted chairs
a note scrawled on the gate
I remember you from the future.
There’s a little bar I know
on the sixth floor
you can get as drunk on you want
bum cigarettes
you’ll say
whoever you are
at two
I didn’t know
the lights turned off
and then you’ll kiss me.
Asking for my bed
telling me
it’s been so long
I believe you.
from a dream
we’re in the car
was it danishes in Los Feliz that day
or croissants?
I can’t shake the thought
it haunts 
I shouldn’t be here.

(Photo from cdixon tumblr) 

Thursday, June 7, 2012

clunk like rocks

no helmet, no lights or socks
suggest destructiveness 
i sat
and talked
and felt good for a while
until i didn’t
i can’t make eye contact
there is a moment
the lingered stare
when feelings pass 
like electric shocks
like rocks
at the bottom
loss of air
makes the emotion come out
i hopped on 
and plodded
pushed the dirt and sweat and grit
this town has a piece of my foot
and you have a piece of my 
look away
or it starts again

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I Can See You Down the Road

My grandfather lived in a mobile home
the kind that sit on the ground and have no wheels.
I used to stand in the driveway
and look through the wooden slats,
the open space,
it was like the place floated.

He moved a lot, but I didn't know him then.
I knew home and permanence
with the option of mobility.
I imagined the house
curving down the 101,
precarious on a large truck bed,
"Wide Load" flapping in the wind.

He did the cooking, bathed me, 
scratched my back in the mornings when I
came into his room and nestled up.
After a few minutes he'd sigh and say,
My arm's tired,
and stop.
When changing, I'd ask him to take his glasses off.
Can you see me?
I wanted him to prove it.
I can't see a thing.

The smell of sheets was a comfort I can still recall.
The sound of the Sixty Minutes clock ticking on the screen, 
however, was not.
His chair leg popped up with a loud creak.
His glasses were thick and smudgy.
In the mornings we walked to the bakery
and ate crunchy, flat pastries.
At the gas station it was Pepsi and lottery tickets.
At the park it was the best climbing tree I've known,
and the friend down the street
who taught me to vandalize.
Her older brothers rode bikes 
and made me think about boyfriends.

A honeysuckle plant climbed up the fence by the trash cans,
which grandpa would walk to every night after dinner.
The white bag of trash 
dangling from his fingers.
There was a weeping willow tree by the pool
where he swam laps on summer days
And the office where Chuck worked,
his English cowboy neighbor with 
two parakeets and a wife.

For such a wanderer, the man liked rituals.

I don't remember him drinking.
I don't know that he read.
He didn't talk much, 
but he smiled a lot
and tapped his fingers on his knee
and people liked him.

When grandpa recounts the years of moving
England to Canada to Spokane to California
he lists destinations.
Whole countries and oceans crossed,
point A to point B.
My dad remembers particulars
almost overheating the car on a mountain in Northern California,
and also, 
not having any friends.

A month before he died
we spoke on the phone.
He got lost
called me Sonia,
but he didn't correct himself.
The vision in his head was clear.
"I can see you down the road,"
he said,
"leaning against a wall."