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

All memories left

featured in the poetry forum February 12, 2021  :: 0 comments

do not haunt me
as much as the ones
that fled like virus deaths.
Blew out, in fact,
like a mistral, mask-less,
whipping toward Arles,
like police, all white,
taking another Black body south
to Saintes-Maries-de-la-Mer,
a pile of them on the beach
by the deceased sea.

editors note:

To be ghosted by such is better. – mh clay

My conclusive dance frame

featured in the poetry forum October 24, 2020  :: 0 comments

rigid, classic, like parentheses
trapping a flutter of sparrows

mid-theft, chicken coop, after grain.
No match for hers, corseted tight,

white-laced, as she denied my bid
to diagram our pas de deux

across the ballroom floor. A feud,
two stern teachers, each certain —

how to construct the perfect sentence,
our grammar book of would-be love,

unbound, sections lying random
among whirling couples, the chapter

beneath us, ironically, open to rules
on passive voice, page thirty-three.

editors note:

A duo’s dance-a-thon devolves into a two-step for one. (Read another on Timothy’s page; a sad sequel for sterility. Check it out!) – mh clay

Viral ending

October 24, 2020  :: 0 comments

Lifted masks, brief kiss, on the lips.
Turned away, skipped some stones,

she went to tinkle (feel free to call it
urinate or pee). Once out of sight,

doubled back. I Purelled, waited,
dreamed, paced like a cat. She packed,

empties my place. Took can opener,
tuna tins, T-paper, stopper for the sink.

Left bleach, vacuum, blue vinyl gloves, a
stale bag of Lays, litter box to clean.

editors note:

Love’s dereliction or anti-social distancing? Two for one? – mh clay

New twist on the end

featured in the poetry forum August 1, 2020  :: 0 comments

Captive to an explosion happening,
each spark hitching a fling into blackness,
the light beside dazzled shadows

with shine and glow. Fire that had burned
at the core, a genesis of sorts,
streaked behind into universal night.

It would eventually pockmark time.
One trace remained, a fuse of coiled rope,
still embered, writhing on the tile floor.

editors note:

Keep your combustibles close, your extinguisher closer; or step back and let ‘er burn. – mh clay

Covert rainbow

featured in the poetry forum May 9, 2020  :: 0 comments

Light is not lithe, scientists say —
it has weight. So, time,
long, long known as a property

of gravity, too, may be packing
a few extra pounds.
Giddy with this knowledge,

I daydream a rainbow —
so voluptuous, so heavy,
her sides billow, spill

from the sky. Red, green,
indigo mix together, splash down
at both ends. Bluebirds find

gold worms, fill backpacks
with them, fly south early, retire.
I am hired as a janitor,

get paid double overtime,
work all night, clean up the mess.

editors note:

Better to keep your dream pristine, or to revel in your mess? – mh clay

The capes we wear

featured in the poetry forum February 14, 2020  :: 0 comments

Superman tattooed on one arm,
Batman taking up the other,

original Wonder Woman on thigh,
you leave her, heinous, behind,

steer for Montana, last best place
to escape. Wine in cooler, extra capes

in the trunk, you hum I’d do anything
for love
(but I won’t do that),

reach Missoula, Sula, Lost Trail Pass.
You batmobile hard into the Big Hole,

keep a lookout for evil in cutoffs.
Wisdom is a speck in the distance.

editors note:

Super smarts for the hero’s heart. But, keep your capes handy… – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum December 1, 2019  :: 0 comments

In another Coleridge dream,
my lithe python, eager

to please, slithers off
down the carpool lane.

Glides slow, pays the toll
takes the proper exit,

finds the store. She buys
chips, cheap beer, dip,

splurges on a Lycra skin.
Hemmed in at rush-hour,

she threads traffic, somehow
arrives home, brew still cold.

We toke, drink, eat all the treats.
I squeeze her tight again.

editors note:

S-s-s-such sweet suffocation. S-s-s-s-s-s-s-s… – mh clay