Monday, March 05, 2012


It was 963 miles from Tijuana
to Fort Stockton, and each mile
was hungrier than the last.   Amber
said to the passenger window 
(and out into the blurred liquid
desert) "We should slow down,"
she said languidly "maybe we
should stop." Oddly-elbowed
cacti shot by, and disappeared
into the Infinite Behind Us. 

The car grew hungrier, and so
did Amber, and so did I, but I
wouldn't admit it (of course.)
Texas was beckoning, and 
I was reckoning a short distance
to the fine fare of Fort Stockton. 

But the sun fell, and a polar moon 
rose over the High Plains, and
I couldn't tell if the shining in her eyes
was tears or twinkles, but
her face was a rich lady's bracelet
with the dark desert behind her. 

Neither of us was surprised
to find Fort Stockton's fine dines
closed to our midnight kind,
and I watched while Amber tried
to hide her hungry anger. 

But at (what seemed to us)
the Last Truck Stop on Earth,
Amber's eyes were shining again
when the waitress told her of 
the infamous titty mountain. 
Their laughter put my Pacific
Reckoning far behind me.

Amber's chirp of joy 
as she looked back West
on our way out of town
brought me home again;
she saw the low rise 
with its tiny craggy pike
bathed in the early light. 

And I agreed when she told me 
as we nosed our way home:
"I'm never going back
to Titty Mountain."

Thursday, February 23, 2012


we are a tremendous
and foggy people;
your black jacket,
my black eye,
our memories
like ferns: older
than dinosaurs

and into the asphalt
and mud went the things
we would've lost anyway:
a painting that claimed
to solve the mystery,
my keys, and we were

paleontologists exploring
what makes an evening:
the smudge of a streetlight
in my eyes, the hypnosis
of "please listen to me"

Friday, February 17, 2012

Broken Slinkies

Power lines riddle 
back and forth across
Midtown like broken
slinkies, and I am
working on a mystery
of my own: how
does the fog 
seem to rise 
from the field;
how does your
memory come along
with the dew?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Fireman's Lift

(for Anthony Gaudio)

everyone needs a lift;
sometimes a great lift
finds us free and easy
and it's a great lift to know
you're around; sometimes
we find we are miles away,
and a lift is all we have

big America lifted me up,
and you are big America too;
sometimes a lift is all
we can do; sometimes a lift
is all we needed; sometimes
lifting is magically achieved
miles and months away

Friday, February 10, 2012


Wide as an oar
and black as asphalt,
it twines with hair 
on the backseat
of my car. 

Some of my best friends
are poems, and some
of my friends are poems too. 

My busted backyard grill
is a Connecticut winter
in the summer heat.  
I am a kid coming home
from a few months at school. 

The older I get, the fewer things
I keep in my car. 

Thursday, February 02, 2012


If late at night there is a ringing

and it's the Colonel, don't be frightened.

Remember that the funny twists 

of the heron's neck are posture too.

Perhaps the hair on your cheeks

is bristling?  But the Colonel was clean-shaven.

The Colonel's prayers were more communication 

than supplication; the old phone

is more of an appliance than a relic.

 If the Colonel asks for a report, tell him

everyone's fine; the rocky island in the bay

is white with birds.