Thursday, September 29, 2016


                                                             SUMMER OF 1944
Daily headlines in the local newspaper:   POLIO.  INFANTILE PARALYSIS.  POLIOMYELITIS.  Whatever it is called, it's talked about in whispers.  Like a dirty story. 
 Beaches, parks, movie houses, all remain open.  Hardly anyone goes. It's in the air; on the benches; on the toilets. Stay home.  Stay inside.  And so we do
 On one Sunday afternoon my father can take only so much of my sister and me.  He reasons that with most of New Haven staying home, it would be safe to venture out. And there we are, tripping off to the beach on the open-air trolley. Anticipation mixed with disappointment. No one singing or laughing, no large party groups out for a good time. 
The beach at Lighthouse Point is nearly empty. Only four or five families.  And a lonely lifeguard in his tower. We spread our blanket, yards away from anyone else.
"Stay away from them," my father warns.  "Don't play with those children." 
We hadn't played with anyone since Billy O'Hara was rushed to the hospital by ambulance two weeks earlier.  Will we get sick?  Will Billy die? Rumors rolled down our street like a loose ball.  He's dead already.  He's alive. He's paralyzed.  He's in an iron lung.  He's only 10 years old. 
                                                    low tide water line–
                                                    a little girl races
                                                    her shadow
Presence, #29 May 2006

Tuesday, September 27, 2016


                                             house for sale
                                             dried leaves scatter
                                             this way and that
                                             fog in the hollow
                                             the cadence of leaves
                                             dripping on leaves
Simply Haiku
A Hundred Gourds

Saturday, September 24, 2016


                                       EARLY AUTUMN   

A sunny, crisp day.  Here and there a splash of red, a tinge of yellow. In the maple, one thick branch glows golden.  The rest remains green. The coloring on most trees is random, almost quixotic, except for the dogwoods along the fence. They look to be painted by an artist obsessed with symmetry, dark red on the tips of the leaves, dark green towards the stems. Each tree a copy of the others.   

                                          full palette–
                                          holding the brush above
                                          a blank canvas
Nisqually Delta Review summer 2007

Monday, September 12, 2016