#7 on the Richter Scale

After the fracture
We scampered apart
So many thin, branching
Fissures chased us

To angry distances
A false safety
From the arteries
That spilled out

The pressure of a
Hot, churning heart
Erupted into a chasm
No place to jump

You danced your side
And I mine–
Pull back
Necessary cooling

A deep bravery
The search, no posse
For that path
Only found alone

All those cracks
No longer molten
But dangerous
Sharp, unforgiving

Over this one
Then that,
Mirages, setbacks

Then discovery
A like gaze
Over that divide
At imperfect and flawed

No more looks down,
Or glances back
Simply across
Then the leap

For Love


A bad omen
Or merely a crow
On a branch
With nowhere else
To be

Good luck
Maybe simply a penny
Like so many on
This sidewalk

We want signs
Animals, lost objects
But even majestic
Like an eagle
Would not do

Plying with
A wingspan
Aloft on a breeze
Held up
To keep watch of me

I should hope
For your
A newborn baby —
In another land, perhaps

Happy What Day?

‚ÄčValentine’s is bullshit

People, too, who only say
They love you
The swinging dick
The phony maiden

All requite in passion
And hormonal justifications
And for what
A myth, a tale, a skull


Love is not candy
Love is not lace
Nor leather
Nor a face

It is action
It is calm
It is acceptance
And belief

A nudge
Turned persistence
A choice
Turned commitment

Take the hearts
The poems
The posies
Toss them in a sea

But never ever
Expect me
To bow or bend
If you slight my love

Or just love, generally

Red Rover

Most respected –
By children’s standards – decide fates
Captains of popularity determine
The first, the middle
The dreaded last
Same players, same captains
Selected in a pecking order
No justification required of
Intellectual prowess, hybrids of
Physical-social strength
Repetitive boosts in self esteem
The varied weak left to wait
Unfair amateur appraisals
Whispered negotiations
Lack of an auctioneer’s
Sensitive estimation

Arms eventually link
Legs brace as
The finally chosen
Always, always
Pray. Hope. Wish.
As in a cruel twist
They, now called first,
Must hold or break through
For they can side
Based on effort
Or acting ability

Squinched eyes
Exchanged players
Strategic lines move in
Sometime surprises

Until at last
One stands alone
And must decide
Choose a side
Give in…

Red Rover, Red Rover
Send so and so
Right over

Or bravely begin
Building their line – again