Red sky at night

featured in the poetry forum February 16, 2012  :: 0 comments

I carry sea shells three at a time
to safety across beach sprinkled

with fragments of their kind.
Some purple. A few pink.

Beyond reach, evening surf
swirls more than I can rescue

into a rainbow of shards, grinds
perfectly shaped scallops, whelks,

even hawk-wing conchs fine,
then tosses them ashore

to join sand lying white in death
beside yesterday’s salt.

You wade, oblivious. My footprints
pool in high tide.

I see wounds, not delight,
slicing red across the sky.

editors note:

We burn or bury our dead to deprive collectors everywhere of polished keepsakes, novelty knick-knacks; my shining skull as doorstop or as paperweight. – mh

Use two pillows, sleep fast

featured in the poetry forum September 22, 2011  :: 0 comments

Dreams swirl in like snow,
drift in piles — lovers, loved.
I wrap each in burlap,

lash openings against the cold.
Some vanish by dawn —
frozen, quiet, quick to go.

Others — warmed, stroked,
unbind themselves — return, hot,
mute my muffled screams.

Candles I disrobe you by
drip waxy fire, memories wafting
across each fold and pleat.

Slow to know love from heat,
I warm myself in steam
rising from the open seams.

Knives in ice

featured in the poetry forum August 19, 2011  :: 0 comments

Inuits bury them, handles down,
blades up, add water,

let each freeze solid,
daub the tips with blood.

Lust lopes in before dawn —
wolves believe they’ve found

seals asleep, streams full of salmon,
caribou laid out end to end.

They lap up the offering,
ignore it is their own blood

they drink to fullness,
to weakness, to sleep.

Curled frozen on red ice,
frosted furs offer Inuits hope,

life with color, warmth at night.
Arctic wind retains howling rights.

Imposing intelligence

featured in the poetry forum June 28, 2011  :: 0 comments

I use double psychology on my cat,
acting as if I am locking her out
so she will dart in.
She cannot miss my line
of dead rats on the porch.