Leaving For Work

Monday, June 4, 2018

This morning, a
tiny kiss from
my wife—pinprick
in a balloon
of loneliness.

• • •

Hearing From You

Saturday, June 2, 2018

I love hearing from you when I do.

This town is full of long afternoons
that grow overcast, sultry, and break
into cool evening rain. Then, black
wet streets in the darkness steam,
and the night becomes steamy,

and in the streets shine neon signs
of diners and dry cleaners. The day’s
warmth returns. Our tires hiss
through wet streets as we drive with
windows down.

                            Now I am a man
with gently whitened sideburns
and salt and pepper beard. I have
what people call a “paunch.” Now
my jokes fall slowly down—drift
quietly to the ground. “How
do you get to the bottom of Carnegie
Lake?” “Cracked ice, cracked ice,
cracked ice.” No one picks that up,

and so the day goes on, toward sultry
night, toward rain and memory.

I love hearing from you. Just know
that things have changed—and I’d say,
for the best. For the better, anyway.

• • •

North Carolina

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Wake Forest; okay.
Nap for rest in the afternoon.
Sleep for awhile; and wake.
It’s the drowsy cycle marked
by patterns of light,
and, quite honestly, we
prefer dusk. We love the quiet
zip of chainsaws in far forests
and rush of traffic on the interstate;
the dust of our convenience store
printed on its heavy drapes
a young woman hung there
more than 40 years ago.
North Carolina is long—long
shadow, longer days
of distant sound, the cardinal’s
“Sweet, sweet, sweet, sweet!”
among some cedar’s boughs.

• • • 

Staggering Intellect

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Some say I have a staggering intellect.
Staggering drunk, that is. Drunk
on ideas, though. Ideas about alcohol,
however. Just high-end scotch. My wife
brought home a bottle of pink champagne
from a women’s event at our church today.
A church event—that has champagne at it!
Or had. Come to think of it, my wife
came home early. It wasn’t a leftover
bottle. It surely wasn’t something
she should have taken, but she did,
and now here we both sit penciling words
into separate Moleskins, but sitting
near enough that our shoulders touch.
I suppose you could say I love my wife.
She is preparing drunken noodles.
The old fashioned way. They’re
sizzling in a stovetop wok. Lovely!

• • •


Tuesday, May 1, 2018

not really
that hard of
a game to
figure out.

• • •

Brainstorming Opportunities

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

bring me

What I love
most is
helping you

• • •

The Dads

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

The dads are wearing cargo shorts again.
Come on, children. Don’t be ashamed.
The dads carry car keys, wallets, phones—
in short, our worlds.

The moms are wearing stretch blue jeans,
and, children, they are finely formed.
They carry our body in them.
They carry our lives.

But the kids—get this straight, children—
the kids are off on their phones
or out in the night doing things.
They deal with shame.

The kids are everything and everyone.
They are the essence of beauty
and what we’ve always want to be.
May God protect them.

• • •

No, My Name

Thursday, April 5, 2018

No, my name isn’t Astrid Lemoin. No,
It isn’t Allegash Tittleton or Penelope Monsterpuss.
My name isn’t Bev Bilerson or Shame Boy McCoy.
Is it? Is my name Hellcat Pajamaphile?
Hole-in-One, Lord Edwards? “The Pun Master”?
Edwardian Clearlake Sparklerbater?

It isn’t any of those. My name is important to me.

• • •


Thursday, April 5, 2018

Don’t have any real blockers
except for low IQ.
I’m dumb and tend to repeat
myself—say the same thing
in slightly different words.
And I use corporate clichés.
But, and I realize this
is a big “but” and that you,
perhaps unrelatedly, have a big
butt—but, if you can get on board
with who I really am, take
a deep dive for a mile in my
shoes under blue skies without
boiling the ocean from 30,000
feet, well then I’ll throw
something on both of our
calendars for later this month.

• • •

A Self-Blessing

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

May my words ring less dully
than a lead bell whose clapper
is wrapped in soft cotton.
May my life shine more brightly
than a 7-watt nightlight
deep in a broom closet
or vacation condo fruit room.
And may my thanksgiving
pulse warmth the way a sore
thumb pulses and pulses–dully.
Thank God for words, light,
and warmth; thank Him
for analogies that engorge
the reader’s understanding.

• • •