cave drawings

this morning I sharpened my pencil
in expectation of words

little boats came instead
while antelope gathered
upon a white hill
to stare – cave drawings
from I don’t know where

I would rather have had words

[first posted 31 May 2015]

say a little prayer

perhaps I should genuflect
light a candle
mumble something holy
but when the night terrors come
to this private vault
we call consciousness
only my dog can hear me
be near me
comfort this old skin
so I say a little prayer for him
and whisper I’m ok

[first posted Jan 8, 2016]

howl

dog on the bed
like a polar landmass in the spring
I would give anything
to be like you
yours is an empire of the skin
mine the meandering way within
an island off the compass of the world
go howl your howl
let it be heard

[first posted 1 Jan 2017]

the valley

sitting on the bed
notebook raised to the rough angle
of the ridge opposite
where the orange cubes of a new estate
have sprung up against the skyline
I recall another time
I sketched houses in distraction
as one parent raged against the other
in the summer vacation
before they parted

I shouldn’t have started
the light diminishes – evening comes early

evening comes early to all of us
who dwell in the valley

[first posted 26 March 2015]

default lines

the day defaults
upon the dark trudge home
I turn my collar to the night
find no message on my phone
think of Robert Frost
as the last street light is passed
weigh good against indifferent
and find the case is lost

the day defaults
to nothing very clear
beyond a bowl of peanuts
and a glass or two of beer
but when I think back
put some distance to my sight
I find that in the darkness
came a different kind of light

[first posted 26 March 2015]