another daydream

another daydream

Monday, March 12, 2018

Honor Mentionable


The role of honor
is clothes:
the justice’s robe,
the graduate’s gown.

What of the voice
less dressed
not to a wardrobe born,
or made?

What of questions
that pull on sleeves
like children pestering
to be seen?


The poem is also featured in this week's column of "Next Line, Please":

Thursday, March 1, 2018

The Next Line, Please Book

Here it is––what began as a weekly column for The American Scholar is a book! David Lehman's prompts are the source of many wonderful poems. It's easy to get hooked on his fascinating poetry making suggestions, and also on the collaborative spirit of participation. Personally, I'm indebted to him for directing and inspiring my writing. You'll find several of my poems (and partial poems) in the book. You'll also find poetry by Angela Ball, Christine Rhein, and Berwyn Moore, to name a few of the fine poets included as weekly winners.
Next Line, Please: Prompts to Inspire Poets and Writers is available at:

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Surreal Translation

The result of my guesswork to translate a Portuguese poem, without knowing Portuguese! To see the original poem and it's actual translation, visit this week's The American Scholar

Summer Folio

To nature a city of olive trees
is born…overarching like parasols
against the rays of infinite say-
ings that die behind the teeth,
that religion doesn’t save or explain.
Quickly time trembles.
Still two questions stand
like mountain peaks overlooking
the sea. Spill of foothills offers foliage,
a pergola and a bench. Reminiscence 
translated as scenic postcards.


Sunday, February 11, 2018

Monday, February 5, 2018

Five and Rhyme of 5-7-5

Rest Assured
(Chihuly glass sculpture,
New York Botanical Garden)

To the nothingness
of an absent gaze lacking
evidence, raptness

To lollygagging,
lax within solarium
room of rays slanting

To the stalled answer,
not lacking for repartee,
but loathe to capture

To the waste of time,
dilly-dally from the more
makings to call mine

To the scrape of aim
that drags: your sunken seed will
bring the newly named


Monday, January 29, 2018

Borrowing from Hamlet

Scene at the Tate

Even in the gallery, there’s gossip. Strangers talk about what was staged––the model with silver gown stayed hours in a tin tub, laid out like caviar––to the general view, a maiden voyage. And Millais, Pre-Raphaelite, realist to the manner born, grappled with the Surrey flies, windy gusts that could toss him to the water, and a notice for trespassing––murder most foul of the hay. What, then, did he confide to a friend? Painting  “…under such circumstances would be greater punishment to a murderer than hanging.” Not to mention the medical bills when Siddal of the bath took chill in the long hours of painstaking detail. Art exacts a price and so the heart, as Ophelia floats in her perpetual spring.


Thursday, January 4, 2018

Mi Papá

Long Story Short

Some resolutions rise
like fireworks…showy,
bright, dissipating.
What of the resolve
to be precisely here–
New Year’s Eve on a
terrace overlooking
the Pacific, my father’s clasp
around my shoulders,
his quiet ardor apparent
as an undertow? This Mississippi
man whose fluent Spanish has
a southern twang, who began
in a shotgun house and found
Panama a homeland. I see his
naps, ask for tales of escapades:
Bolivia, Venezuela, Singapore,
a diverted landing in Tashkent
to live in an airport for three days.
He’s 112 pounds, as if accumulation
of risk has cut to the firebrand marrow.
Shuffling in flip-flops, with
his sagas fastened to his frame.