another daydream

another daydream

Friday, January 11, 2019



Pink rose in a planter
three winters.
On the fourth spring,
sprouts absent,
I give it to the sunny

Slim chance of retrieval, 
rose spirit sapped.
Charcoal color thorns

A crystal
I place with the

––uncertain medicine
rooted in purity of

what can idly die
as long as I conceive


Wednesday, December 26, 2018



The infant
will be sentenced 
even as he is born.
Even as gifts are given,
the last agony begins.
We sing-song in the sands of
an hourglass...we praise the promise
of the start...we fold the ending into the 
startle of the babe who beats our hearts.
And we cry "joy" in the night, as if...
from the sweet milk of hope we will never part. 


Monday, December 17, 2018

Ring in the Ghazal!

Play It By Ear

Like the pallu of a sari flapping on a motorcycle ride, ire will rise
––with a push of speedy air, that blaze of color, like ire, will rise.

We argued about language, as if it amounts to a ratio of rice and water,
each part of speech counted in cups, enough (in my mind) to kill sunrise.

Our visits were scanty, but in the ache of your birthday, nearly broke, you
scored twenty dollars (I found) on our path––aha––walking till moonrise.

Ah, if the chair has been yanked, as well as the house and land, I’ll take:
a journal, a mirror, and a carpet––to reach some other side of fulfill, arise!

The care of oddities, like a nocturlabe, is how I ace what the hare in the moon
does chase––the sea and strands of seaweed mussing my hair before I’ll rise. 


[Anagrams from the name Charise feature in this ghazal poem: ear, sari, ire, rise, air, as, rice, each, ache, aha, ah, chair, has, reach, arise, care, is, ace, hare, chases, sea, hair.]

Monday, December 3, 2018


Shooting for the Moon

They handed me a gun
––dusk, as it happened,
moon misbegotten on
my glass-top table. Sullen,
I aimed––not pointing at anyone,
not blaming the run
of Furies, not looking to shun
repercussions of a percussive gun.
Shards surround, leaves abun-
dant fever the ground. It’s autumn.
I’m mad for a glow minus reflection. 


[Also featured in the column "Next Line, Please" of The American Scholar ]

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Fable and Feast

November Fable

As I bathe the bird in the kitchen sink,
a red foxfirst guest of the dayvisits
the stone lantern set in the backyard.

Daughter is cooking up a meaning
for what we view outside
symbol or omenas the dryer
fluffs the tablecloth.

This is the first year of a feast
without any grandparent to be seated.
No need of a dishcloth bib, or sturdy mug
in lieu of crystal goblet.
My father-in-law is making other rounds.

It’s the lantern he bought for a Japanese wife
––the one he threw a party for when she was
moving to Hawaii with another man, a good friend.
We had no palate for the news, but he knew––
he knew from the start she would briefly alight.


Thursday, November 1, 2018

Slow Going

Commuter Pew

On the church marquee:
  “The Gospel According to Moss.”
Doctrine softens…breathes...
on the church marquee
marking the circle, Maryland to D.C.
Cars at a caterpillar crawl in morning rush.
On the church marquee:
  “The Gospel According to Moss.”


Friday, October 19, 2018

Poem Embodied

Poetry and dance meld for a villanelle by Anne Harding Woodworth, "Francesca's Song".
Grateful to perform this collaboration for the annual poetry reading at Parkmont School, Washington, DC.

Monday, October 8, 2018


Have a look at my latest poem "Lost" over at Tuck magazine––a fitting home for this topical piece: