NaPoWriMo/NaPoREADMo #4 — At the thrift store

At the thrift store

an old man sits
sinking into a soft
brown couch

his ear to the face 
of an old wind-up clock

his hand on the dial
on the back and 

somewhere someone 
squeezes a squeaky toy

Keepin' the "Po" in NaPoWriMo....

O.P.P. #4 — William’s work…

Day 4 of National Poetry Month.

And we’re looking up…at the men on the roof….

Fine Work with Pitch and Copper

by William Carlos Williams

Now they are resting
in the fleckless light
separately in unison

like the sacks
of sifted stone stacked
regularly by twos

about the flat roof
ready after lunch
to be opened and strewn

The copper in eight
foot strips has been
beaten lengthwise

down the center at right
angles and lies ready
to edge the coping

One still chewing
picks up a copper strip
and runs his eye along it

NaPoWriMo/NaPoREADMo #3 — The garment speaks only of garments

…and taking things off….

The garment speaks only of garments

We all have them. 

Notions that we did 
not ask for, nudging us.  

We entertain them. We listen to them.
We ask them to dinner and sometimes
we even let them in.

We try not to let them slip by,
unnoticed. We look at them,
admit that they are our own
and we try to own them.

They are angels and
we try not to turn
from their brilliance.

They are demons and 
yet we seek them out.

We do not let them 
pass by us but rather
we pull them through us.

We push them
through our bodies
like living swords.

We help them 
through our homes
like burning guests.

We pull them 
like twine 
through an earring hole.

We feel them pass through our bones
like rough thread through the eye 
of our own heartful needles.

We take aim and sew
with them. We sew
them into garments

and dwell in them
for a while.

We warm ourselves in them
and we warm our selves 
in the making of them.


It is cold, so

we give them to others 
to try on, to
see if they fit,

to see if they too
find them warm.

If they do not, then 
we move as 
the moment moves.


The garments remain
for a time.

They  say,
“I covered this.”

“Remember this?”  


“It is all right.
I will remember it for you.”


We pull them off,

leave them
on the floor and 
walk out of the room.

Keepin' the "Po" in NaPoWriMo....

O.P.P. #3 — William’s clothes…

Day 3 of National Poetry Month.

And we’re trying things on….


by W. S. Merwin

Believing comes after
there were coverings
who can believe 
that we were born without them
he she or it wailing
back the first breath
from a stark reflection
raw and upside-down
early but already
not original

into the last days
and then some way past them
the body that we
are assured is more
than what covers it 
is kept covered 
out of habit which
is a word for dress
out of custom
which is an alteration
of the older word costume
out of decency
which is handed down 
from a word for what
is fitting

apparently we believe
in the words
and through them
but we long beyond them

for what is unseen
what remains out of reach
what is kept covered
with colors and sized
we hunger
for what is undoubted yet dubious
known to be different
and our fabrics tell
of difference 
we dress in difference
calling it ours

NaPoWriMo/NaPoREADMo #2 — Fullness

And now for another one of me own….


One can search for the true self.
The true self is an empty shelf.

An empty shelf is a metaphor.
The true self is not a metaphor.

The true self is not an empty shelf.
The true self is three words.

The true self is not three words.
The true self is not the true self.

Keepin' the "Po" in NaPoWriMo....

O.P.P. #2 — Stanley’s Layers…

Day 2 of National Poetry Month.

As we just begin to dig and dive into….

The Layers

The Layers

by Stanley Kunitz

I have walked through many lives,
some of them my own,
and I am not who I was,
though some principle of being
abides, from which I struggle
not to stray.
When I look behind,
as I am compelled to look
before I can gather strength
to proceed on my journey,
I see the milestones dwindling
toward the horizon
and the slow fires trailing
from the abandoned camp-sites,
over which scavenger angels
wheel on heavy wings.
Oh, I have made myself a tribe
out of my true affections,
and my tribe is scattered!
How shall the heart be reconciled
to its feast of losses?
In a rising wind
the manic dust of my friends,
those who fell along the way,
bitterly stings my face.
Yet I turn, I turn,
exulting somewhat,
with my will intact to go
wherever I need to go,
and every stone on the road
precious to me.
In my darkest night,
when the moon was covered
and I roamed through wreckage,
a nimbus-clouded voice
directed me:
"Live in the layers,
not on the litter."
Though I lack the art
to decipher it,
no doubt the next chapter
in my book of transformations
is already written.
I am not done with my changes.