18 December 2006


Love doesn't mean
A protecting arm
Rushing to alarm
Sheltering and warm
Sometimes love means
Knitting the rope that hangs.

Love doesn't mean
Completing the whole
Bubblewrapping the soul
Fulfilling a role
Sometimes it means
Acid on a calloused hand.

Love doesn't mean
Amaranthine supply
Being the nice guy
Stifling the cry
Sometimes it means

The Wife

She burrowed to be next to him
Under the torn quilt they had brought when they first got married,
Through the brown hairs left by the toy dog now barking at night at prey he couldn't attack,
Over the hollow place in the mattress that was never turned as often as it should have been.
She laid her head on his shoulder and sighed.

Career, finances, groceries, laundry, her role as mother
And as daughter.
The ideas tumbled noisily like lottery numbers in a plastic bin.
"I wish things could be like the first year we were married," she whispered,
Her head on his chest.

He snored,
And she smiled with familiar contentment.

17 December 2006


from Ain't Milton: a chapbook of poetry

Father, daughter
Side by Side
Stories told, prayers said,
Under a common blanket.
Cradled by his chest, her preschool eyes weighted with the day’s discoveries.
He sighes.

“I have to write a poem.”
“What’s a poem?”
He smiles. “A poem is…”
He tries to capture it.
“A poem is a written bunch of feelings.”
“Like ‘awake’/ ‘asleep’?” She laughs and mimics both.

“I’ll let you read some I’ve written.”
“You’ve wrote a lot?”
“Quite a few. A poem is a written thing that tries to…”
“Is that you?” Her toes touch his leg.
“You’re very warm,” she says as his chest pillows her head and she enters
The hazy contentment of new sleep.
Inexplicable perfection.

I offer you this…snapshot,
Nothing more.
Do with it what you will.
A shimmering moment of a father’s life…
Blurred by songs sung to a hairbrush,
Ballet recitals,
T-ball games,
School plays,

Life and love are in the moments:
The microscopic flecks of inexplicable perfection.

Blog Archive