the velvet, ivory scarf
she wears around her neck
has shining, liquidbeauty
more delicate than cashmere.
as she stretches slowly, slowly
into sleepfulness
her legs become a softpurrsong;
an entire being
moving through magical,
rhythmic, lullabyes.
when you stroke her underside
it becomes a”don’t ever stop”
as her dark, perfect, pointed ears
deepen with delight.
she is the essence of a beautiful,
as you sink into her eyes
you are lost
knowing you’ll never want
to leave.
unless she pushes you away
with her strong, curling tail

( for Valkyrie)

it is so long since my heart has been
with yours

shut by our mingling arms through
a darkness where new lights begin
since your mind has walked into
my kiss as a stranger
into the streets and colours of a

that i have perhaps forgotten
how, always(from
these hurrying crudities
of blood and flesh) Love
coins His most gradual gesture,

and whittles life to eternity

—after which our separating selves
become museums
filled with skilfully stuffed


isn’t it amazing how the
daffodils are a peaceful bunch,
no pushing, no shoving, no arguments.
they are all yellow but not
the same yellow, some dark,
some lighter, some not even
aware of their size or height.
each stem slants a certain way
in the middle of the winter.

if you close your eyes
all sound will become pianissimo
like daffodil fluttering.
you might even think it’s a
butterfly embryo.
i can tell that none of them
know when they were born,
none of them know when
they will kiss death
in the bitter cold of freezing.

it doesn’t matter or
so it seems to me
they wave and sway
they stretch toward the moon
they smile in the raining.
one is gone and then two
and then just a shadow,
across the sunset outline,
of what has been,
a remembrance of beauty.
tiptoe through the tulips
with me
during the winter

joseph asked to lie down
with the tall black king,
what did mary say about that?
she said it didn’t matter;
nothing was happening in their place.
all mary wants is a clean, comfortable
mattress, she’s having lower back problems.
you know the short king who is always
bowing and kneeling? yes–
he wants to sleep with that big bull
with the enormous horns.
he wanted to tell me all about it,
i cut him off.
what about jesus?
he just wants to have fun
doesn’t want to sleep throughout
the whole year, wants to laugh.
you said there was a serious
complaint, i would say so.
that two year old sheep standing
out in the field, wants to complain.
oh, about what?
she says she was left behind
for the entire holiday season,
nothing to eat but cardboard
and old pieces of fake snow,
she says she nearly died of
hunger and thirst.
she wants to complain.
what did you say?
i said she could complain to
jesus, joseph, mary or judas,
she never heard of judas,
i told her about the thirty
pieces of silver case;
she’s thinking about it;
she might be trouble.
you’d think that just one year
we could close the carton
without any complaints.

our lemon tree is overflowing
it’s full on every side
if you slowly walk around
you can smell lemon, lemon
a delicious fragrant time
if you slowly walk around again
you will start to smell lemony
we just bought a lemon picker
it makes you twelve feet high
there are enough lemons
for another tree
as we pull the lemons down
the entire back yard is juicey
hey neighbors, come and get
some lemons, they’re free
squirt them on your spinach
squeeze them on your avocados
there must be at least a hundred
maybe more, maybe a million

this hour is
this minute is
this second is
the best one i have ever known
i have floated down from
i don’t know where
and now i’m being blown
from here to there
it makes me giddy
i just heard a little boy,
walking by outside, singing
‘this old man’ and it made me
become a big, wide smile
now i’m just standin’
waiting for someone to come
if someone comes carrying
a big bag of troubles
i’ll poke a hole in the sack
as he saunters by
all the troubles will
fall in the grass and become daisies
i think that most people would
rather have a daisy
than an aching back
than a scratched elbow
i don’t know how long i’ll be here
but i’m going to run ahead
and ask the little boy
if i can sing with him
maybe he’ll teach me a new song
maybe i’ll teach him a new song
maybe the little boy is a girl

sometimes as late as midnight
she would listen to the sound of everybody drinking
the slur of drunken talk, sliding words
people making fun of each other
pitching sarcasm
telling each other what to do
telling each other what to eat
what not to do
her head would get tired of all the nonsence
all the bickering
she would wait until the crescendo reached a peak
and then slip out the front door
nobody noticed
nobody really listened
she walked down the street
it was only ten houses away
up the cement steps
around the side of the house
and into the kitchen
"ah, you came to visit, how nice.
want some coffee?"
they sat down at the chromium table.
grandma mixed the decaf instant coffee
she took out some cookies
"these are from Dudt's" "i know, i got them for you."
"what's happening at the top of the hill?"
"everybody's talking and nobody's listening.
so i stand at the edge of the room and smile.
nobody mentions my father."
my mother's gone on to a different life.
i miss my father. he suffered so much."
"maybe he's at peace now."
grandma looked at her, smiled at her,
wrapped her into her arms
she felt that she was a sorrow expert.
she mourned everyone during the second world war.
and even though the war was fading
there was sickness to endure, there was pain to rock to sleep.
(for arlene)

it ‘s difficult to enter
the disappearing bridge
it’s almost impossible to leave
the disappearing bridge
you must stand there
until you know that
you are moving
you are being held by
holy night
you know there is peace
in the universe
you can hear angel wings