Today I must retravel

The taut ground of soothsayer
Who broods in caverns for a glimpse of light.
How have I lost the glinting stone
I kept so long in my fist?
I have thrown down despair
And taken Struggle
And now it prowls round me as I sleep.
The eyes of Struggle
Are amber and do not blink,
The eyes of Seer in the dark
Who pleads for just one breath of day.

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Game of Poems

Young woman dancing

Dancing on the Razor’s Edge

You speak in riddles because

You ache to speak.

You ache for space

To expand and contract.

You cast your words into the chasm,

To be caught by one

Whose breathing holds your breath.


When your foot finds the brink

You ask the air


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Can We Talk?

I have not shared any of my work-in-progress here because it has felt too close to the bone. It’s a YA. It’s about art. And it’s about time-travel. It’s about a girl who feels responsible for keeping someone else alive, and how she goes back in time and thinks she wants to stay there. It’s a verse-novel, so it’s made up entirely of poems.

But it’s time for some mutual sharing. I’m looking for a small group of young people (high school/college) and some art.

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Dancing on the Razor’s Edge

This is a course description for a poetry class I hope to offer this summer at Bellevue College.

Teen Poet: Dancing on the Razor’s Edge

Poetry is dangerous. The instructor urges extreme caution. Bring paper, pens and words (caged if necessary). Hear the work of young poets, published and unpublished and then let your own words out. Cut through the steel bars and let loose what you really want to say.

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Postcard Poetry Project: Drones

This one goes out to Michelle Castleberry, and is best understood as a response to her fabulous poem, “The Gift.”


The night you stole the hives,

We had gone out—

A thousand of us guys—

One last rollick on the town

Before sampling the delights of our virgin queen.


The girls had fed us ambrosia for days

As they gazed into our compound eyes

And exclaimed at the size of our mandibles.

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Postcard Poetry Project: “Frogging”

This month I join a slew of poets who will send a postcard a day with an original poem written on it. This one goes to Lenora Good. The card had a frog on it, so here’s what emerged:


Torpor is another

of the frog’s proficiencies—

that pond-bottom state where

respiration slows and the heart calms.


The work is not yet complete.

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In a Writing Rut? Steal from Another Author (but not really.)

I don’t know about you, but after years of writing, I notice that I get into a stylistic rut. As I have mentioned before on this blog, the solution is theft. Today I’m going to steal from author Janet Lee Carey, creator of Dragon’s Keep, The Beast of Noor, Dragonswood and many other books. This particular bit of larceny is from The Beast of Noor.

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Ekphrastic Poem–“Mountain (Relievo)” after Cris Brodahl


Mountain (Relievo)


And when you climb,

Anticipate the weight

Of the journey—

Rope, pick,

Pack, piton—


The deceptiveness of glaciers,

The hut you never reach, the gorge

That takes you, without warning,

To the bosom of the earth.


Don’t ask yourself

Why you are here—

You know.

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Question For My Father, Who Lives Alone



Dad had a birthday today. “I never thought I’d live to 82,” he said.

“Dad,” I told him, “You’re 85.”

“Oh! So I am!” he said.

We took him for a hamburger. In a couple of weeks there’s some live music we’ll take him to. It’s a stretched-out birthday.

Visits are quiet. After two strokes, Dad doesn’t hold forth like he used to in conversation.

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