Salt lick

featured in the poetry forum July 4, 2023  :: 0 comments

I lie still, half-breathing,
listen for steps, faint,
hesitant, deft. She glides
from the shadows, pauses,
holds breath, intent.
Slips toward me like a doe
summoned by salt lying white,
to be licked. She lifts
nightgown off, tosses it aside,
creeps to bed. In moonlight,
her skin glistens, backlit.

editors note:

Can’t get enough. – mh clay

Inventing fake me

featured in the poetry forum March 1, 2023  :: 0 comments

Mocking, irreverent, tongue-cheeked,
I’ll text strong, only my pronouns
shadowing me. Double entendre
what I say, refuse to shave,
wear bamboo shirt, modal briefs.
I’ll tuck I Ching coins into my jeans,
only wry smile, tweet what I eat —
asparagus poutine, three times a day.
I’ll fake follow this fake me.
Post diatribes on a website page,
the background, black, my burning words,
white, of course, set italic, all in caps.

editors note:

If not fake, at least an alternative fact. – mh clay

Out of myself

featured in the poetry forum October 29, 2022  :: 0 comments

A slender tube slithers my way,
stops to siphon, drip.
Any deep breath might cause collapse.
I retreat, moan, don’t gasp,
probe memory to recall if immunity
for idiots is out of the question,
if phone trees hate all the lines
running through, branching off.
At the end I am relieved
it is not some patriotic catheter
sucking a lifetime from me.

editors note:

Don’t dare disconnect, just try to relax. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum July 28, 2022  :: 0 comments

I dream I emerge from a coma comma
run depressed to the lake again
jump in dash
no way up to the surface period
I learn an important lesson colon
people can pass themselves away
without ever having used
any kind of blade slash

editors note:

And enclose yourself in parentheses. – mh clay

Swagger goes, tears flow

featured in the poetry forum May 29, 2022  :: 0 comments

A novel dream windhoved in —
late spring day, America finally birthed
real change — helped boys, guys,

expel rage, begin to breathe,
toss Berettas, Glocks, Colts away.
Sacked, purged deep urge to kill.

Let children play, laugh, live.
Made school yards safe. Even rabbits,
ravens, robins, wrens escaped,

no longer practice targets
of the killing craze. Quite a change,
deranged shooters — always men —

throwing aside the tough guys pose,
not blogging hate, not firing away.
People everywhere melted guns —

generals buried grenades, rockets,
missiles, drones. Males, young, old
began to think. They cried, cared,

admitted feelings, stopped the swagger,
ceased to seethe. Women sighed,
reveled in relief — loved the peace.

editors note:

Must this just be a poet’s notion? Why not make it today’s news? – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum May 5, 2022  :: 0 comments

I drop my sewing needle,
open screen, let in what’s left
of day. On a whim, use scissors,
cut me out of her photo album —

toss the ragged bits away.
Still un-cleansed, upset, I snip
a passing fly in half. One winged side
gyres down, a gossamer glide —

the other dives. I feel a modicum
of sheared delight, hope briefly
to discover if self-loathing contains
intricacies beyond mere suffering.

Maybe I’ll find within a single
trimmed snippet whether impulsive,
mesmeric frenzy has anything
to do with random vasectomies.

editors note:

If THAT was random, it WAS “impulsive, mesmeric,” indeed. (Ouch!) – mh clay

Outsmarting ants

featured in the poetry forum February 22, 2022  :: 0 comments

Ragged barrier of bleach laid down,
I know it won’t stop them all.
Like student painters, they crawl
the perimeter, search for shallow crossings,
intend to bring every morsel
of burnt burger back. My sponge
from above daubs up rogues, scouts
on point for damp trip to patio edge.
I squeeze them free. They begin
a new path to the supper dregs. Intent,
nozzle ready for any who succeed,
I sense your presence behind me.
Drawn by the sheerest of nighties,
I find a direct route to bed.

editors note:

Exterminatus interruptus. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum November 23, 2021  :: 0 comments

Upon my arrival, I share with phlox,
verbena, firebrush, rose,
where I’m from, how I garden,

the plants I’ve grown. To be embraced
in her yard, I must set broccoli,
peppers, beets, even chard, at ease.
He, before me, disliked flowers,
ate meat, not veggies, hated
to sow, water, weed. Lantana

remember this betrayal, so do
radishes, anemone, beans.
I slip among them, bend, listen,

whisper low to each. The cosmos
bow acceptingly in wind. Kudzu,
suspicious, stays out of reach.

editors note:

A gardener’s guide to getting along with her. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum September 4, 2021  :: 0 comments

I dream you back, a butterfly —
flit in, dance past belly, thigh,

touch cheek, settle on sheet.
I offer texting thumb, you float down,

vibrate there, do not flee.
Maybe you’ve changed, will stay,

vacuum, massage me, clean the sink.
You sleep. I grab phone, snap photos,

store your rainbowed slumber —
an Instagram treat, red, lilac,

gold, green. You wake, unfold wings,
transmute to drone, rise,

hover briefly, high-pitched whine.
I wake too, you zip off east.

editors note:

When “sleepin’ alone in the drone of the darkness…” – mh clay

Redacted vision

featured in the poetry forum May 22, 2021  :: 0 comments

I spot a life going bad, mine, sort of,
obscured by dark pits on the front
of my eyes. They swim across,

slowly erase good choices I’ve made,
blind a bit with every blink.
A whole spatter ruins my view

as I gaze skyward, them back and forth
in the foreground, Rorschaching
fluffed white clouds sable —

inkblots with Sharpies
clearly intent on turning
even my peripheral memories black.

editors note:

Of frets and fears be free? Eyes front! – mh clay