2001:1 ( first issue- guest poet)
after she’s asleep
moving most of her dolls
from the cold-
Christmas lights
snow patches
throughout the woods
pine scent
as I approach
his work station
the mouse clicks
most of the rain
    not falling
      on me
in the empty room
father and son:
two quiet types
valley fog:
out of it
geese in formation
bright autumn day
the bus driver yells at me
our turn
to stand here-
falls overlook
a key in the pocket
   the coat
     no longer fits
warehouse district-
a late afternoon cloud
long grocery line
the modest excitement
of my thoughts
late night bus-
a light on
in the fare box
just past the church
I clean my glasses
late afternoon sun
noisy blackbirds swarm
the transformer
a few floors down
in another building
someone else looks out
my son sniffs
the football-
“is it really pigskin?”
the crowd presses
to look in-
zen garden
extended goodbye
their paved driveway
buckled by roots
– for Karen Montner-Silverman
full moon
a coffee can of pennies
holds the door open
mower won’t start
  busy as a bee
      a bee
Christmas eve
in her pajamas all day
the youngest one
from room to room
on the Clue Board
a tiny spider
as the spider goes
down the drain
a second thought
spring wind-
the kid in the neighborhood
has a new whistle
March rain-
within the red wine
a nap in my chair
always takes his time
the custodian watches
      the floor dry
abandoned lot-
chocolate milk carton
bleached white
in the middle of a crowd
   someone I knew
we know by the degree
he teases his sister-
all better now
the load tied down-
her painted toe nails
on the dashboard
just arrived-
their dog sniffs
our tires
class in the forest
they all look up
to the trees
reading into it
as much as I can
             my life
my handwriting
the high quality paper
in the middle
of some construction
a lilac blooms
railroad crossing
an old man
waves at the train
Discovery channel-
an older male vanquished
heads for the hills
straight out
   of a dream
       another day
steady rain
a pickle
in the parking lot
the dates
    on the coins
        I give up…
zoo safari trail…
ant caravans travel
the railing
standing here just watching
the spring sun sparkle
on the water
and what is it they say about
living life to the fullest
cell phones
they find each other
in the mall
between bites
from the apples
    his stare….
the finished letter
in the envelope…
taken out again
Veteran’s Day
the normal route
past the cemetery
picture window
in all that white
a cardinal
flea market-
a Rubik’s cube
already solved
where I sit
on my usual bench
remains of a nut
a little tree-
not enough shade
to sit in
lingering in bed
the ceiling
has no answers
framed photo-
the three of us
close back then
under my breath
    “oh boy”
sitting down for lunch
an old oak
on a hairpin turn
dark scarlet
autumn colors-
how assertive
she becomes
I choose one-
a roomful of chairs
without people
my daughter asks where
we are going…
soft spoken-
on her windowsill
more snow
first snow gone-
this steady need
to practice
alone with the cat
the look between us
held awhile…
potluck luncheon-
a yellow jacket cleans
its antennae
long conversation…
through different windows
the sky
having brushed off
several small ants
an extra large one…
loud storm
I think of
our roofer
spring sun
good enough
right where I am
mid day
my son’s bear hug
still with me
for lunch
looking for an empty room
room after room
our daughter tells us:
let the listing goldfish
live as long as it can
taking me back…
water laps gently
at the shore
old farm house-
the pitch of the
patterned linoleum
our child
who will not go to sleep-
sheep on her pajamas
my wife removes
the parakeet’s mirror
for awhile…
left and right
he follows the way
of his kicked stone
without any music
I catch myself
tapping in time
spring in the air
so many false starts
in my heart
to start the day
her slipper sounds
too fast
on hold…
branches in the window
wave wildly
empty classroom
windows open
to summer
sweet corn on the cob
thinking of my old
gray morning-
a workman with a fancy watch
mixes mortar
one short chapter-
I move the lawn chair
to reclaim some sun
just oatmeal
the waitress says
before I pick up the nickel
a rain drop
on Jefferson’s head
her tossed jacket
another place
for the cat
my arm snagged-
a good look at
the wild rose
fall colors
in the lake-
one thought after another
pawn shop
guitars and guns
lined up
bike ride
as fast as I go
the moon on the water
crows jabber
at daybreak-
if that were all
cross country skiing…
twenty-two falls
her big brother’s count
snow falling
I read myself
to sleep
i remember I left
the lights on
my wife asks
if she should feel sorry for me
“I’ve got it covered”
her voice-
flake by flake collects
 on a twig
big test day
she scrambles an extra egg
for his breakfast
in the dark
I let my imagination go
dying light
at the corner of the shed
chickens peck away
hunting four leaf clovers
students discuss
their childhoods
in the car singing
until I’m passed
and seen…
my mistakes-
no matter how many
coats of paint
spring air-
bumping into someone
I thought was dead
spring rain-
the cat in the window
washes its face
spring sun-
making a list
of what makes me happy
illuminated clouds-
a store for sale
way out here
brilliant spring
the ambulance passes
Valentine’s Day-
I forget to get
the garbage out
last sandwich
from the loaf
the two ends
relatives set to visit
so many cobwebs
to remove
resting in the shade
an elderly man sits
on a gravestone
the river
full of ice
broken free…
a child I don’t know
waving at me
exam week
she lies face up
in the rain
a dime on the walk
a stranger
beats me to it
our two loudest
on vacation
in the same week
spring twilight
a young couple play badminton
without a net
sun pops out
a construction worker
breaks into song
day’s end
rinsing the fish
in tap water
so many years
to remember…
I sit up straight
she turns down
my favorite music…
plays recorder for me
the spider centered
in its web
in my room
just thinking…
do not disturb
doubting myself…
but he looked too good
to need a quarter
night train-
part of myself reflected
in thought
looking busy
as my wife
pulls in
on the windowsill
her first tooth
without the tooth fairy
in a hollow
at the base of the trunk
a seedling
quiet part…
out loud a little one asks
“when will it end?”
first game
doing her best
to avoid the ball
a crow
circling like a hawk
but it is a crow
in the dumpster
potted plants
take the rain
stand of tall trees-
not sure what
I’m turning into
dinner time-
each night
a fallen hero
Father Leo
two seats down the pew
doing a puzzle
winter wind
the voice of one tree
after another
walking alone…
a submerged log
comes to light
with plump rain drops
the clothesline
sitting alone…
her second time through
the newspaper
the mourning dove
lowers itself
to take off…
blue sky-
nothing constructive
to offer
moments into
my music
the vacuum cleaner
I give someone
easy directions
behind the wheel-
yet another of his
last day of school-
she tells me there was nothing
more to learn
in the garden
right by St. Francis
the woodchuck hole
so many books
  I can’t find
after the artery scan
a Danish
the day lilies-
some have crossed
the road
afternoon sun
a chef naps
at one of the tables
Sunday morning-
a brook sparkles
out of the hills
strip mall-
the shimmer of leaves
on a new tree
muffler shop
a man managing
his cough
in our doorway
a man reads to me
a bible passage
beginning late…
    the under attended
morning sun
just a plain paper bag
with frost
evening star-
    the horizon
    of my childhood
walking the tracks
my thoughts
go nowhere
near zero-
just rabbits
and crows
the cashier
holds another large bill
up to the light
       from the flower vase
                   returned to the garden
unmarked grave-
a chicken
named Sunflower
mixed blessing
my best critic
at home
warm winter day-
our dog squints
for a scent
old friends talk-
each holding
car keys
in the deep bowl of sky
salmon clouds
breakdown lane
                 with political stickers
my wife catches me
picking from our trash
in the hay wagon
dining room
next to my wife’s chair
her dog at attention
construction site-
folks gathered around
the newborn
those were the days…
she’d meet me halfway
from work
a truck piled high
with hay
too faint
for my son to see
a little used trail
light rain…
a sense of trust
along the way
  trying to figure
how to spend it…
  a little free time
a poor night’s sleep
in the tent
sun comes out…
the walk home
with my shadow
full of dirt
a dump truck waits
for her to cross
seeing more
of her
flower garden
where she buries
the goldfish
pleasant forecast-
my wife announces
her plan
so many things
I need to do
wasting not
a moment
spring peepers
urologist’s office-
a framed photograph
of the falls
the place emptied…
a spring breeze
blows through
in the dark
seeing my flashlight batteries
a week before he died-
new glasses
for distance
just in case-
weighing myself again
after the shower
late day sun-
at the edge of the party
everyone aglow
rundown docks-
minnows schooling
around the trawler
cruise control…
unable to decide what
to think about
mixed in
with the instructions
her perfume
in the night…
not even a senryu
busy bar
another case of
mistaken identity
full moon
he tells me
his side of the story
through dinner
our dog waits…
then eats his own
winter sky-
an empty nest
left behind
ninety years
each of her cocker spaniels
named “Honey”
my wife has named our computer
my children
don’t want to stop
historical marker
turning back
in the harsh wind
a crow cawing
my wife tells me
I’m going to make it-
common cold
the hills…
each house nestled
in the dark
the kitten kneads
at empty space
bottle feeding
drive-thru bank
sun on the oil slicks
in each bay
in the kiddie pool
a couple of ducks
go at it
first night away-
we discuss
our pets
well worn
the lowest branch
at school
misplaced again
the address
for my gypsy niece
a different motel
this time
my daughter growing…
closer and closer
to the mirror
offset from its stain
a rusted washer
on the boat’s deck
retirement home-
seagulls lined up
on the jetty
to upgrade
his iPhone
the young beggar
baby rabbit
not scared
for the day
the cat favors
a paper bag
thunder and lightning…
my wife gets up
to lock the door
behind the shed
grass growing
from a hay bale
biking slowly
through a shower
of cherry petals…
the sudoku
I’m stuck on
light and easy
spring morning…
so many birds
telling it!
my wife not well-
we follow through
the cemetery visit
cold wind-
a stranger looks at me
like a friend
before the auction-
my wife trying to catch
a chicken
in the yard again
moving stones
spring twilight-
to think she once played
staring off
at the clouds
of age
my son donates
to a candidate
by myself
at the end of the bed
a chocolate
looking up
as far as we got
the moon
just a shiver
of not being here
– the stars
getting the newspaper…
just enough snow
for footprints
county fair-
the parachutist lands
school taxes
cider and donuts
at the bank
almost everything
iced over-
Physical Therapy…
the cat tilts its head
side to side
walking home…
some of the snowfall
rides on me
a couple
holding hands
testing the ice
trying to get my glove off shaking hands
how casually the deer
cross the road
the universe
of my thoughts
the boats
at rest
three trees
so close together
in the moonlight
in the same sentence
my wife mentions my role
and the wallpaper
the bee’s
with his cane
waving to everyone
who passes…
abandoned car-
the place for campfires
and many moons
driving real slow
the old pickup
shaky too…
roaring wind-
my little thoughts
for tomorrow
blushes of green
I follow her
into the woods
long lunch
getting to the heart
of the paperback
lamb’s ear
the quarry
spring sun stirring in the pond
motel overnight-
once again I see
my whole self
he moves everything out
of the garage
another day
a few birds fly
across the sunset
snow melt
a bottle in the remnants
of a paper bag
moment of silence-
bubbles surface
on his beer
an hour
from his bath
our dog has rolled again
nearly empty theater…
      how close
      they sit
July 4th
at the stockyards
just a few sows
spring planting
petals scattered over
turned earth
the current
up under the bridge
into the ice jam
almost done-
my wife starts whistling
to herself
a fruit fly
interested in me
in the tent
talking ourselves
to sleep
her apron on
leaving one house
for another
new day
bringing water
to my face
  over the valley
shape of the inlet
so many things
I can’t tell my wife
her barking dog
so much unclear-
snow melting
from a locked bike
cold night
semiconscious tug-of-war
with my wife
the dog in me
a warm breeze rustles
through the corn rows
startling me
kicking around town ever since Vietnam
before or after birth
our relationship
with the stars
within the grain
of the table
a dragon
passing me by
in the stillness
a snowmobile
the easy chair-
out of sight
of my family
quiet out-
while resting I find
my pulse
wings open wide
                        as they enter
                                            the river
another sunset
over the hill
heat wave
no time
to go back
how slowly
   he drives
        across her lawn
summer night-
walking into
her perfume
harvest moon-
more clothes designated
for pajamas
the house gone
I take the steps to see
the foundation…
autumn wind-
the squirrel’s high wire act
over traffic
another Thanksgiving
the fold-out turkey
at her desk
sitting in the sun
not even trying
to figure anything out
my beer:
claiming it’s best
in 1893
the big snake
on the road ahead
a branch
   all the time
ending and beginning
   the universe
May day-
a dandelion in a pot
at the nursery
in a tree
I once climbed
on the street
a person really happy
about something
he stands there
a sheet
over his seedlings
opening my mouth
to say hello
a bug flies in
the cat steps on
just one piano key
after the rain
a snail pulling away
from itself
snow melt
a fly lands
on me
the cat at the door
doesn’t want to come in
under the fence
into the chicken yard
      a caterpillar
redwing blackbirds
snow in patches
between headstones
I carry it around
then place it back
a candy bar
whale watch-
those waiting to board watch
those getting off
  with my wife
    hydrangea blossoms
winter wreckage-
no card from her
this year
hot night-
looking to the heavens
with a popsicle
outside the meeting
back and forth
the sprinkler
coming in
under the greenhouse door
a strand of ivy
feeling down-
a quick visit to my parents
in the cemetery
yesterday’s coffee-
fruit flies hanging out
by the mirror
Happy Holidays-
I fasten
my seatbelt
more or less
trees frame where
the farmhouse was
staff meeting-
I identify
with the last donut
as if to show me
the wind pulls up
a swirl of snow
the way
the waterfall flows
into being frozen
one generation
pushing another
in a swing
empty nest-
he gets a single fish
in a bowl
autumn silence-
clippers rusted shut
in the garden
after the river boat… the river
the lumber yard
by forest
another day
without any sheep
our sheep dog
a measure
of the night’s cold
our cat’s affection
old photo…
the detective
in me
hints of a headache-
leaves blowing around
the tree
our quiet-
flowing over and under
the ice
Mother’s Day-
a mix of sun
wind and rain
from the ball game
the camera zooms
to the moon
cold hands-
the moon
half full
to the cemetery
in shambles
summer night-
walking into
her perfume
between poems
the wind
in the microphone
another day
I don’t look
in the mirror
turning off
the night light
takes off
in the wind
his hand blown kiss
on the surface
   riding downstream
     some of the twilight
here I am
in the same place again
the opening
just right
Orion’s belt
with feathers
red berries
old snow
I keep my quiet
around her
attic cleanup…
placing some stones
back outside
rainy night-
climbing Everest
in the easy chair
more snow-
a man on the bus
with a braille laptop
a Happy Camper pulls up next to us
at the dentist
renovation work
next door
thunder and lightning-
one of the dogs becomes
part of me
near zero night
my breath
comes and goes
on his way
to the interview
picking lint
late autumn-
leaves in a pile
cling together
second foul shot…
just the sound
of pompoms