Friday, September 8, 2017

Where I'm Born





























I pray under the fan tilted sideways on the ceiling in my grandmother’s house,
Its hum distorted by a quick and violent pull upon each turn. There are spots
On the carpet, dust in the cracks between the window where it would slide
Open above the evergreen bush in late June or July. I pray listening to the clock
From the couch, everything in the room waiting for the sound, heard
At the dinner table as the sun dips, making pink shadows pitch along
The wall near the TV. I pray in the chair we brought from Missouri. We live
Here now, childhood worries cling to the buildings back home, to porches
We drive past, staircases, striped table clothes - red and yellow and so
I pray my husband sleeps here every night. I pray he is always familiar,
The dip at the base of his neck. In dreams, I pray under the laurel,
Cypress, spruce, and cedar, bark and bone. I pray in an airport bathroom
After three years and also in the car park and on the highway. I pray washing
Our white sheet that fits loose over the bed, corners bunched up, but clean
Rising off the heat from the dryer. I pray in the liminal stages of a sunrise
For old friends who stopped calling, for their warm days and long lives.
I pray for sticky taffy, stale beer, and August light that falls across
The closet door. I pray for all these tender places, for patience, for more.


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Billboards


































We dream. Pink moss under rogue clouds.
Open roads, Canyons hover over me.

This morning I broke Hungry. Arms out, cooling
On the stone countertop. I let so many someday
Children go unborn. So what is to become of me.

This world, this Wide World drips honey on concrete,
Peels back layers, crosses borders. The skin next
To your ear grows soft.

I hear brooks, feel the chipped, green poles that hold
Up billboards get warm while we stop to fill the gas
Tank. Two dogs pull their leashes for a long-gone
Scent of coyote. Blood brothers, I think.
Same crescent moons on their paws.



Monday, August 7, 2017

Letter to My Favorite Man


When we first met, I convinced myself that it was for the fourth or fifth time in as many lifetimes because suddenly my breath got slower and I started sleeping better and there were moments when your leg would fall across my leg or your arm would rest across my chest and I would get pushed into myself - back into myself as if I were floating somewhere above my body before without realizing. It feels like being in the ocean and instead of facing the beach, I'm facing the rest of the sea and notice that it's actually a pale green and I feel it holding my back and the spots behind my knees in a way that nothing else could. In those moments there is nothing else being asked of me except to exist. You are my favorite man.



Friday, August 4, 2017

Eso


every piece of writing I sent out has been rejected and it feels strange and meaningful because our plans have changed. we are planning a different kind of life outside of grad school and careers and being stationary. even though we are in the (very!) early stages of dreaming it into being, I think universe might be urging us on.

Monday, July 17, 2017

July and Other July's


I want to write more prose or maybe more prose-poetry. in any case, I think I'd like to share more of myself here.


Here is something I wrote this morning. It's my attempt at turning memory out of the mundane. I think that's what writing might be for. So much of life is mundane, but writing ignores that. I have this feeling what I write is pretty useless, that I don't have any more memories to turn to and I've used up all that's slightly interesting about my life. Maybe this is true, maybe not. This piece of writing is about the summer my mom rented a garden plot and moved to Georgia for a few months so B and I took over the watering. There's not much I remember about that summer except those days we walked to the garden, how hot it was. So hot it actually hurt to be outside.

Maybe I will add more to this story.


























We grew peppers in the garden plot four blocks away, their waxy bodies drooped near the ground well into July. Later on we heard those bees died - the ones you used to watch in the white boxes, hands on top of knees, bent down close to their busy world. We filled the birdbaths while robins waited on the iron fence, heads titled, wary of anything humans do. That summer something cracked in the heat. Certainly those days propelled us to move East even if we didn't know it at the time although I think I might be combining months now, everything rolling together into one long, lazy July. It must have been another summer I remember, my mother and grandmother sitting on the front stoop laughing, drunk when drunk still seemed okay - a normal afternoon in the Midwest, dusk rushing in making the concrete steps cool under our feet, cicadas offering the first notes of their symphony.


Sunday, July 9, 2017

Singing Beach




























Under your skin
The multitudes
Of slow millennium

Gulls run after
Empty crab shells

One blue horizon meets
The line of another
Humble world

This salt, this body
Born from some
Patient afternoon

Falls home again


Anatomy of a Homeland


For you who learned to listen to the sounds of placelessness,
Tongue pressed against the ridge behind your front teeth,
Huffing through the H or the N. For cooks smoking near
The back door, menthol sticking to the folds under coat cuffs,
Home for a moment in the lilt of their own words, plastic chairs
Tip toward the shade. For the mud and sand in Nogales, heavy
In your pockets, that stayed far too long on your fingertips.
This land that wouldn't rub off onto the bed even if your thighs
Touched, hands brushed the sheets, sweat from July rolling through
The ridges in your palms. For your children who sleep at the shore
Of one nation, under waves of another, the blue world of two places.

For hidden legacies, three last names, bruises where you're missing.