Sunday, March 30, 2008

swamp pearls

Tromping in underbrush picking my way through skunk cabbage I stumbled on islands of pea green squishiness, where tadpole eggs gestate, about to break out, greenness in general being desperate here for rejuvenation. Strangelets, these beads of life, like the offspring of protons. Go ahead, consummate. 

--what she dreamed of was disappearing into the seen

writes Jorie Graham in "Orpheus and Eurydice" and it's that time of the year, the in between, just before he looks back, in between the before and the after, before the turning. I smell it when I run.  I'm on my way there.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


Finally tonight I heard them -- the tree frogs. An essential embodied sound. Don't you know we have them. Sounds as much a part of us as heartbeat and pulse. There are others, but tree frog croon is deep. Like the hymns we sang every morning at school. Or muffled voices rising from the kitchen. The wind through the crack in a pane. When I hear the peepers it's time to smell mud, to dig, to quit your tent. 

What are your embodied sounds?

Thursday, March 20, 2008


The Woman Who Loved Worms

(from a Japanese legend)

Disdaining butterflies
as frivolous,
she puttered with caterpillars,
and wore a coarse kimono,
crinkled and loose at the neck.

Refused to tweeze her brows
to crescents,
and scowled beneath dark bands
of caterpillar fur.

Even the stationery
on which she scrawled
unkempt calligraphy,
started the jade-inlaid
indolent ladies,
whom she despised
like the butterflies
wafting kimono sleeves
through senseless poems
about moonsets and peonies;
popular rot of the times.

No, she loved worms,
blackening the moon of her nails
with mud and slugs,
root gnawing grubs
and the wing case of beetles.

And crouched in the garden,
tugging at her unpinned hair,
weevils queing across her bare
and unbound feet.

Swift as wasps, the years.
Midge, tick and maggot words
crowded her haikus
and lines on her skin turned her old,
thin as a spinster cricket.

Noon in the snow pavilion,
gulping heated sake
she recalled Lord Unamuro,
preposterous toad
squatting by the teatray,
proposing with conditions
a suitable marriage.

Ha! She stoned imaginary butterflies,
and pinching dirt,
crawled to death's cocoon
dragging a moth to inspect
in the long afternoon.

Colette Inez

Monday, March 10, 2008


yes it's nearly here or will be and i will too be done with words like freeze and beat and onto words like fern and swoon which are nearly here even though i went over board there with ice and melt but the air forced itself on me this morning and i had to stop from diving into the melt and thaw no matter how cold to open to separate which is why words like chaff and pleat will soon demand my attention

Monday, March 3, 2008

red wing black bird sighting

Undid in the Land of Undone

All the things I wanted to do and didn't
took so long.
It was years of not doing.

You can make an allusion here to Penelope,
if you want.
See her up there in that high room undoing her art?

But enough about what she didn't do --
not doing
was what she did.  Plucking out

the thread of intimacy in the frame.
So let's make a toast to the long art
of lingering. We say the cake is done,

but what exactly did the cake do?
The things undid
in the land of undone call to us

in the flames. What I didn't do took
an eternity--
and it wasn't for lack of trying.

Lee Upton