POEM: on the Black Moshannon

on the Black Moshannon

a flotilla of water lillies
floating on the Black Moshannon
each one a seat for a deity

my son picks one white flower
brings it into the canoe
droplets falling off the petals

the sound of our hull
as it strikes the lily pads
is like metal on metal

later, as we stop beside the dock
Jen and I hold the boat stable
while our sons step back onto land

7 September 2013
State College, PA

POEM: tweets

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tweets

descending the stairs
I look toward where
the birds used to sit
remember they’re gone
they weren’t like dogs
or cats, no cuddling
but they would perch on my hands
happy and singing
it’s important to not
be the only living thing
in the place where you live

20 August 2013
Auburn AL

POEM: counting snails

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counting snails

we called her name
shouted from the back porch
come to find out
she’d been out in the woods
all afternoon counting snails
she came back covered
in grass and leaves
cheeks streaked with mud
but smiling like it was Christmas
she showed us a sketchbook full of swirls
snail trails she’d copied
each one a little galaxy
gone almost before she could draw it

27 July 2013
Auburn AL

POEM: be nice to bees

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be nice to bees
(for Bonny Chen)

I don’t remember
much about bees
but I think it’s true
that when a bee stings
its stinger rips off
and it dies quickly
if that’s true
I don’t quite get it
it’s not a useful defense
if it’s fatal
so then I thought
maybe bees have stingers
to protect the group
not the individual
the defenders
sacrificing themselves
for the good of the hive
when this occurred to me
I started to feel
differently about bees

8 July 2013
Auburn AL

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[Photo Credit]