Monday, December 13, 2010

december 13th, 2010

tired isn't the right word for it
exhausted is closer
heavy is best
but your limbs are moving through warm water
and you are too
too heavy
too much at a loss
to find the best word to describe this.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

december 5th 2010


how is it that something that is always at the forefront of my mind
is somehow always an afterthought?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

November 14th, 2010


i was waiting for
your fever
to break

Friday, November 12, 2010

November 11th, 2010

we have backslid
into a time of silence
when the empty spaces between us
were filled by so much more than the distance it takes to get from here to there

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

November 10th, 2010

what a difference three days makes

a crashing down a pulling apart of dreams
plans unravel
spin out

you come home to an empty house and it makes you want to run screaming out the door
take me to a place where people are
get me out of my own sadness
make me part of the world

you were so close to love
and now love is so far away

Sunday, November 7, 2010

November 7th, 2010

this is happening: a quickening, a pulsing, a change

we are not ready / we have been ready for weeks
change is coming and we are busy
packing / unpacking
talking about nothing but this coming event / talking about anything but this coming event
you want this and you don't want this
i want this and i am afraid

anticipation is both dread and delight
say it: you have been careful for what you wished for and it's suddenly here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

October 26th, 2010

poem for past midnight

when i close my eyes
against nighttime darkness
in a bed's cool sheets and heavy blankets
and sleep is wrapping up around me,
like love
it's you who is within me,
heating my blood,
your face imprinted on the inside of my eyelids
like love

Monday, October 25, 2010

October 25th, 2010

there is a full moon
and we're acting crazy

like we're supposed to
when the moon is full

hanging heavy in a deep, black sky
a white pearl eclipses reason
blots out the parts of us
that make us see sense

in other words
we are blinded by the glare
of our own failings

and we rage.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

October 19th, 2010

one month and four days have passed

that is 34 days or a fuck of a lot of hours
since they broke your window and crashed into your house,
pilfering through your things and stealing them
you were robbed, (though this is a word you try not to say too often
this is a word you keep to yourself, for late nights when you can't sleep and you roll it around and over your tongue like a secret shame)
and you thought you had the list, you thought you had it all:

1. camera
2. bicycle
3. necklace
4. ipod
5. computer one
6. computer two

but today you discover: they took your food scale

and this shocks you
and surprises you
but not, surprisingly, because it's a fresh violation.
what shocks you is that you have been off your diet for
thirtyfour days

that's a fuck of a lot of days
to cheat.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

October 6th, 2010

we are tiptoeing on the edges of happiness
going in circles, sometimes, of course,
but the point is we are getting closer to the centre

this is like a record, remember those? old-fashioned, like Love, like This

i can't help but look
sideways, out of the corner of my eye, back-glancing as we go
and behind us the edges are slipping away, crumbling, and i can't tell if this
destruction of the past is

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

October 5th, 2010


Refrain 1 (A1)
Line 2 (b)
Refrain 2 (A2)

Line 4 (a)
Line 5 (b)
Refrain 1 (A1)

Line 7 (a)
Line 8 (b)
Refrain 2 (A2)

Line 10 (a)
Line 11 (b)
Refrain 1 (A1)

Line 13 (a)
Line 14 (b)
Refrain 2 (A2)

Line 16 (a)
Line 17 (b)
Refrain 1 (A1)
Refrain 2 (A2)


Monday, October 4, 2010

sunday october 3rd, 2010

awake awake awake awake

it's because we slept so long this morning
but also because
we are sleeping alone tonight.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

September 28th, 2010

there is more than one way to look at this

1. his eyes are so ________________, and she looks down, ashamed.

2. you could say anything to me right now and i would die, i would absolutely just ________

3. one touch, one look, one word, and this will break open

4. the good the bad spilling all across the floor in waves

of _________________

Sunday, September 26, 2010

September 27th, 2010

there are no words for this

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

September 21st, 2010

we will be fine
we will be fine
we will be fine
we will be fine
we will be
we will be
we will
we will
won't we

Sunday, September 12, 2010

September 12th, 2010

our love is made up of
starts and stops
little packets of time
three days
two days
twenty minutes over the phone

we have become efficient fighters
we deal with misunderstandings while packing up the car
while searching for keys we have to get to the conclusion of an argument
nothing with us can be left incomplete
we can't just leave a room and come back to the disagreement later, once we've had time to think
we don't have time
we race through the pain and get to the core of it
because we will have to go days
weeks, sometimes,
before we are together again

our love is a test in goal-oriented living
we fit the sex, the fights, the sleep, the meals
into tiny parcels of time
let's get this over with because the sun is setting/the wind's picking up/the snow is threatening to fall

sometimes we sleep longer than our bodies want to
but this is not the luxury of leisure,
this is because, like camels,
we have to store up the cuddles, the sleep-addled limbs and the pillow talk
with which to quench our thirst later
when we are alone

Thursday, September 9, 2010

September 10th, 2010


all the while i am battening down the hatches
-- changing locks,
securing window frames,
installing alarms,
tying tin cans under ledges and across
the spaces
by the door --

i am planning an escape, i am desperate
to break

September 9th, 2010

i don't want to congratulate people for getting married. i want to congratulate people for staying single, because loneliness is the hardest thing to live though.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Wednesday, September 8th

your heart is
so good
i am the luckiest girl in the world


Monday, September 6, 2010

September 6th, 2010

when i have no strength left
i look to you
and you share yours:

this is what it is to be loved.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

September 5th, 2010

they broke in
sneaky slithering up and through my windows
rummaging through the dark

with the light from a reading lamp
they pulled everything apart
and found the things they were looking for
in drawers
under pillows
on tables
in plain sight

this house was once mine
but now
it's become theirs
who slithered in through the window
and out the back door

Monday, August 23, 2010

August 23rd, 2010

i seem
to have forgotten
to write

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

August 18th, 2010

i want everything you have
and i hate you for it.

August 18th, 2010

i want everything you have
and i hate you for it.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

August 17th, 2010


it's like you're opening up
opening your eyes
you are blooming
you are finally alive
and you wait to be plucked

time will pass:
spring, summer, etc.

there comes a time
when a flower begins to lose itself.
it will pass through blooming and into bloomed
and then
the petals will droop, the pollen blown off
wasted on the wind
each stalk will weaken
and sink
to one side

you see,
nature gets tired of waiting, too.

Monday, August 16, 2010

August 16th, 2010

look outside


you can almost see the snow

sidewalks and streets
cars and rooftops

wintertime is waiting there

in your memory

a snowfall is always within reach

Saturday, August 14, 2010

August 14th, 2010

straight and sober

there isn't a poem


August 13th, 2010

i don't want to do this anymore
this long
tired ride
my eyes straining against the darkness
looking for the light

Thursday, August 12, 2010

August 12th, 2010

i wrote you a poem
and then broke it up into little tiny pieces
i hid them in places
and wanted you to find them
i wanted you to stumble upon them
like eavesdropped secrets
or change in the couch
the last spoonful of ice cream,
cold, smooth, unexpected
but you didn't really get it
my poem remains unread
and you will never know
how i felt about you

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

August 11th, 2010

word association





the front door

is open

and i have

lost the


to the hearts

of many boys

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

August 10th, 2010

you can tell when people love one another on facebook

there are the photos
of the trips they
take together

photos of one another's faces
here she is eating
here he is smiling at something...
me? something i said?
mouths open
mouths full
drinks in their hands

sometimes (most times) they're posed in front of monuments
or the seaside
or the ferry
or the lake
or the museum
or the street sign
or the restaurant
where "something happened once"
but the photo is not of that thing,
that thing is an excuse
a backdrop
for the real picture
which is her
or him
or them

these photos are often closeups;
the scenery is love

Sunday, August 8, 2010

August 8th, 2010


Jenny Ryan divides her time
between together and apart
between taken and up-for-grabs
between tethered and bereft

this is a seesaw and she's been up and down
a bit too much lately
she's hurting but not in a good way
from all the push and pull

what other opposites can we throw in the mix?

here and there
empty and brimming
deep and shallow
awake and asleep
sure and tentative
real and make-believe
open and shut
lost and found
you and me

Saturday, July 24, 2010

July 23rd


when suddenly you
realize that this, right now,
is your real, true life

Thursday, July 22, 2010

July 22nd, 2010

we are all
in cages.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

July 21st, 2010

phone call

... we hang up

and live to see another day

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

July 20th, 2010

things are so fragile

an ice cube melts
becomes less-than-solid
until all that's left is a thin, sliver of ice
becomes lace
becomes water

Monday, July 19, 2010

July 19th, 2010


i'm feeling
a hot, red rage

seven times over we've changed this plan
i am now seven times angrier than i was
when this started

there is a thin,
shaky line
that gets thinner
all the time

July 18th, 2010

July 17th, 2010

July 16th, 2010

Thursday, July 15, 2010

July 15th, 2010

the things i don't want to lose

in my fingertips
my tongue

and hearing
and my sixth sense

whatever that is

my sense of smell
is useful
as is my ability to use my legs
my arms
my heart

i don't want to lose him
i don't want to lose it
this, or that
i don't want to lose my shirt
my license
my mind

i want to keep everything the same
keep you close
in my back pocket, perhaps
safe in a place
where you will never get lost.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

July 14th, 2010

Now I've ...
Grumble grumple grumble
Really wish i could eat.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

July 13th, 2010

overdoing it

i am trying to cram it all in
shove in love
and television
all the while ensuring
i am eating well
and exercising
my body is a temple i seem intent on punishing
with all this busywork

the truth is
by filling up my days with all this living
i am successfuly avoiding my life

Monday, July 12, 2010

July 12th, 2010

i am currently "starving", i say
and you say, "you don't know what that means"

and i say "how did you do this, when you were little"
and you tell me, "i didn't know anything different"

and i realize that is the problem with dieting:
as with language,
children are so much better
at learning to go
than fat adults who've always had
everything handed to them
on a platter
lightly salted
and greased to go down easy

Sunday, July 11, 2010

July 11th, 2010

upon measuring my waist circumference

according to the World Health Organization
(here-ever-after known as WHO, as in "Who says, anyway?")
i am one inch
only one teeny, tiny inch
from diabetes
a heart attack
strokes, multiple, hitting me hard
as i struggle to breathe
as i struggle to succeed
as a woman
who is, apparently,
only one inch from
sudden death.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

july 10th, 2010

i keep crying
and you would be tearing out your hair
if you had any

we keep gnashing teeth over the same thing
chewing up the same problems
over and over again

we need to swallow them or
spit them out

-- the bitterness on our tongues
is getting into

Friday, July 9, 2010

July 9th, 2010

the modern woman

everything she ever wanted
is what she currently has
and yet the only thing she needs now
is everything she lost.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

July 8th, 2010

their love endures

though they've both cheated
changed hair styles and last names
they remain united

through her drug addiction (pain killers when she fell off that horse)
and his second's wife multiple bouts with Insanity (both time trigged when she lost HIS baby, only his, only ever his)

their children's incest
and their granddaughter's attempted murder
they remain
they continue
they endure.

as the world turns, so are the restless days of our lives at general hospital

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

July 7th, 2010

the sky is so wide
and fresh
blues and pinks and whites

a delight
a dream

but it will soon
turn nightmare
the rains come heavy
hail and lightening

the rains will come tonight

July 6th, 2010

July 5th, 2010

Sunday, July 4, 2010

July 4th, 2010

it has been days
and days
since i have felt poetry

Definition: Poetry is an imaginative awareness of experience expressed through meaning, sound, and rhythmic language choices so as to evoke an emotional response.

Poetry has been known to employ meter and rhyme, but this is by no means necessary.

Poetry is an ancient form that has gone through numerous and drastic reinvention over time.

The very nature of poetry as an authentic and individual mode of expression makes it nearly impossible to define.

i love when a definition ends by unraveling itself.

July 3rd, 2010

For Cecelia and Chris on the Event of their Wedding

The average human heart, beating at 72 beats per minute, will beat approximately 2.5 billion times during an average 66 year lifespan. It weighs approximately 300 grams, and is about the size of a fist. It has four chambers, and is comprised of involuntary muscle, which is not directly controllable at will.

--Taken from the Wikipedia entry The Human Heart.

The average human heart, beating at 72 beats per minute --
But here is nothing average in this. When you are together your hearts beat so fast, 72 beats per minute is nothing, means nothing, not compared to this: when you are together your hearts are hummingbirds, your hearts are transformed to butterflies, burst forth from cocoons.

--will beat approximately 2.5 billion times during an average 66 year lifespan. 66 years? Right now you think you might live forever. In his arms you feel as though you will.

It weighs approximately 300 grams-- Never before has your heart felt so light, though sometimes love makes it heavy, oh yes, love can do that, too.

--and is about the size of a fist. For so long your heart has been locked tight, but now it opens. Becomes a hand, reaching, becomes a furl of wings, reaching, for air, for light, forever.

It has four chambers -- and you have been inhabiting all of them, alone. These chambers are wide, each one of these a room where you keep your secrets, your memories, half-forgotten; old mix tapes and yearbooks, photographs and letters, but now you have invited her in, and she brings the light, the air, the chambers swept clean of the past and you fill your heart's spaces, now, with her.

-- and is comprised of involuntary muscle, which is not directly controllable at will. There is no controlling this. You have tried but you cannot make the rules here, there is no point. In and out the blood flows, the chambers open, butterfly wings and quickening beats, and someone walks in, and you have to give yourself up to it. You continue to breathe; you let your heart take care of itself.

July 2nd, 2010

July 1st, 2010

June 30th, 2010

June 29th, 2010

June 28th, 2010

Sunday, June 27, 2010

June 27th, 2010


1. dandelion bar
2. mow
3. trim
4. tidy each room
5. write
6. poem
7. lunch
8. bag
9. clothes
10. write cheques
11. phone joel
12. hang curtain
13. contact cameron
14. hang light things
15. call keri
16. cover up back plants with plastic stuff

Saturday, June 26, 2010

June 26th, 2010

i don't want to talk about it

i don't even want to write about it.

June 25th, 2010

Thursday, June 24, 2010

June 24th, 2010


for five years you have been
trying to squeeze your
round, peggy self
into their
sharp-edged holes
and you are getting bruises
and you are getting sore
and you are getting so fucking tired
so perhaps
it is time
to stop

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

June 23rd, 2010

true love poems

all of these people
in love
with one another
are asking for my help

write us a poem
they say
and recite it at our wedding
it would mean so much to us

but what do i know?
no one has been unluckier
or sadder
in love
than me

so i lie
i write lies
it's only the heart's ache
that i know to be

June 22nd, 2010

June 21st, 2010

June 20th, 2010

Sunday, June 20, 2010

June 19th, 2010

a friend
is a friend indeed
when he allows you to
cut yourself open
and bleed

Friday, June 18, 2010

June 18th, 2010

they're getting married tomorrow
a dress
a suit
readings and a prayer
or two

is this what it takes to make love real?

an open bar
late night dancing
and sore feet
a midnight lunch
and promises
no one will remember exactly
but the essence makes them binding

is this what it takes?

you say yes
and i am so so lonely

June 17th, 2010


I do not want this
I do not want these
sidewalkless streets
a garbage disposal
for coffee grounds and
the remnants of vegetables i've cajoled him to eat
but there are some things i covet
ache for
the way he passes the cups for the dishwasher
the tv-blanket built for two
his hand on the back of her neck
come to bed
and she goes

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

june 16th, 2010

swim, little turtle, swim!
sun, little turtle, sun!
play, little turtle, play!
oh, little turtle, you've made my day.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

june 15th, 2010

you say we
you didn't used to
you used to say you and me but now it's

funny how one syllable can hold
so much

Monday, June 14, 2010

June 14th, 2010

Sometimes the
Antidote to
Pain, loneliness

Perpetual non-motion is to
Enjoy a
Show on TV

Sunday, June 13, 2010

june 13th, 2010


two hours of silence can fill
a heart

Saturday, June 12, 2010

june 12th, 2010

you are down but not out

he's having a bad day
that much is clear
from the frustrating circumstances
within which he has found himself
but he is not giving up
he will use this evil for good

June 11th, 2010

road trip

we drive miles and miles
to find ourselves in another city
a place to pretend that
we are happy
a place to pretend that
we are okay

we will drive home again
and that happiness will dissolve
as we head
along the highway,
trailing out behind us, burned up
fuel to get us home

June 10th, 2010

rain rain
go away
never come again.
rain rain
is here to stay
you might was well make friends.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

june 9th, 2010

the story of my self-sufficiency begins with my edible garden

with each little plant
i plant -- placed in the plot
behind my place --
i plant a piece
of the plot

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

June 8th, 2010

unexpected winter

it's summertime but
the air outside is freezing
and there's a frost due
any day

my veins have iced over
my heart beats are slow
but not steady
trying to pump hot blood through
but the snowdrifts are high
and the pathways have iced over

i can't seem to move
because my feet
have frozen in place
and i don't anticipate a thaw
(there are deadlines i will miss
because of this)

Monday, June 7, 2010

June 7th, 2010

i am actually pretty pleased with the young and the restless lately

victor has gone to canada
ottawa, specifically,
and i love it:

in this interpretation
canada is full of thugs
in a seedy bar
we drink tequila, not beer,
and no one is wearing a toque

the knifefights on the dock
are refreshing
and entirely in english.

either the writers are progressive
or couldn't give a damn

Sunday, June 6, 2010

June 6th, 2010

i am trying not to run away

he holds himself rigid on the sofa,
still in his pyjamas
his coffee not yet cool on the small table beside him

this was a relaxed morning with a newspaper and
sunday morning love
until they started arguing
about something small
but it wasn't small
it was a metaphor for something huge
and the tears
and the pacing
and the but you aren't listening
and the i am trying so hard
and the where do we go from here?

these things happen
like minor earthquakes, like smaller tsunamis
they come out of nowhere and suddenly
everything changes
shifts occur

june 5th, 2010

don't believe them.

Friday, June 4, 2010

June 4th, 2010

i read him a story about a duck who loses his mother
and his eyes grew wide
and his feet stopped moving
and he stared at me for a long, long time

until all the pages were turned
and each picture examined
until the ducks were reunited
and the picturebook closed
and the he raised his hands (one still encased in a splinted cast)
and clapped
like this was the world's best opera
and he was in the front row

if he hadn't already been on his feet
he would have stood up
and if he'd had language
he would have shouted "encore!"

Thursday, June 3, 2010

June 3rd, 2010

you spend forever waiting for this to happen
and when it does
you wonder when it is going to end

nights on the couch
lying in bed
or doing dishes
or this
or that
and you are waiting for life to grab you by the scruff of the neck, shake you awake and remind you that this is the thing you wanted

question: so why are you wasting it?

a)because you secretly hate yourself
b)because you openly hate yourself
c)because you don't deserve it
d)because you deserve better
e) all of the above/none of the above

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

i am trying to do this thing for you.
it's not a big deal.
just, you know, save your life.

it's nothing, really.
really. don't mention it. it makes me blush.
self-conscious that i'm your saviour.
like, that i'm saving you before you get any worse.

i know you think you are fine with everything, i know you dont think you need saving
and that's partly what makes this so satisfying.
like, i want to see the expression on your face when you wake up and realize
i've changed everything
everything about you
and realize you like yourself so much better because
you're not you anymore
you're me.

and i will tell you what to do
and you will listen
and i will have saved you
from yourself.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

June 1st, 2010

i have spent
every morning
reading tea leaves
looking for news
of you

i have read coffee grounds
my horoscope
and yours
the entrails of a deer i found
by the side of the highway
on my way to your house

you weren't there

i made a pot of tea
with clippings from your lawn
and some leaves, crumpled, fallen from a tree
in your front yard
and looked and looked and looked in the wild for you

Monday, May 31, 2010

May 31st, 2010

absent peices

these days are missing:

april 2, april 16

may 30, 27, may 12 through 21st.

these days were either too good to write down
or too painful to keep track of
or maybe
a bit of both

Saturday, May 29, 2010

May 29th, 2010

Gary Coleman
Dennis Hopper
and Corey Haim, too.

Lena Horne and
Lynn Redgrave
and PK Page (who?)

Dixie Carter
Art Linklater
and Tiger Wood's career,

when it comes to grieving those we've never met,
it's been a banner year.

Friday, May 28, 2010

May 28th, 2010

driving through the dark trees
looming up on either side of your car
put on the headlights and head towards the deep green woods
and emerge on the other side
into a clearing
a prairie suddenly empty
save the deep pink sunset; a reward
for the miles of wooded darkness
you've just come through

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

May 26th, 2010

i am trying to write a poem
about the involuntariness of love
for a mathematician
and his banker fiance

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

May 25th, 2010

today i discovered that
the trick to getting your way
is believing your way
is right
and talking louder than everyone else.

listening only sets you back.

Monday, May 24, 2010

May 24th, 2010

you plant these things and then you walk away
and they grow and they grow and they grow

and they take things over
for instance the garden bed
and then the lawn
they come inside the house
they fill up the spaces in your walls
in your head
in your heart

these things become weeds
these things threaten to choke you out
these things you plant to be pretty
so soon turn against you
in the ugliest way

Sunday, May 23, 2010

May 23rd, 2010

There is something terrifying about
sitting down with the feeling
that if you don't get something written
there will be no reason to ever get up

May 22nd, 2010

I dreamed that I wrote a poem.
It was beautiful, the best poem i'd ever written
there was something about a bird
and a light
and maybe even a unicorn (but it wasn't cheesy—it was that good a poem)
but when i woke it was gone
and all i was left with was
the sinking feeling that
i do my best work
when i'm not even there.

May 21st, 2010

May 20th, 2010

May 19th, 2010

May 18th, 2010

May 17th, 2010

May 16th, 2010

May 15th, 2010

May 14th, 2010

May 13th, 2010

May 12th, 2010

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

May 11th, 2010

not today

when one finds oneself muttering
fuck, i have to write a fucking poem
one might just be best just
skipping the creativity and
headng straight to bed.

Monday, May 10, 2010

May 10th, 2010

I learned to chop up rocks today
he put a tool in my hands and said,
drill down deep
and i did

the rock cleaved in two
and it was fuck you, mother nature
as i harnessed the power to undo what was never meant to be undone

May 9th, 2010

Photograph #1

we are hunters
capturing time
searching for value
in moments
in space

who is happy
see where we all went
see how we were
happy then
happy there

each photo is a shot fired
an arrow
a fresh kill

May 8th, 2010

Photograph #2

While you are taking pictures of things
I am taking pictures of you

you with your camera and
me with my heart

but we share the same goal:
we want a touchstone
a reference we can go back to
to remind us when we begin to forget

Friday, May 7, 2010

may 7th, 2010

conference meals

my tummy is full of cake
i drank so much liquor it was a lake
and now i really ache.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

May 6th 2010

this hotel

we did some of our best loving in hotels
fighting, too

in rooms that looked much like this one
in other cities, countries
our story took shape
and a history was formed
and a future was sketched out
to be written down later

and now i'm here
in this hotel
without you
as though i'm writing a Super Summer Special
a sidestory
of my own
and i miss you
but sometimes
a character has to tell her own story
once in a while

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

May 5th, 2010

there are things we don't want to remember

i don't want to see him;
his heart broke mine.

it's not that the wound will open afresh
and spill bloody sadness across the floor--

it's not that i still love him
and the angels will weep at our meeting--

it's not that he wants me back
and i will go because i've not met anyone better
(and besides,
he' s not yet totally bald)--

it's that
i'm ashamed
that once my heart did break
that the sadness was so bloody
and the angels did weep

you see:
i'm horrified that there ever was a time when
i would have taken him back
if i had been given the chance

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

may 4th, 2010

may the fourth be with you

her pilates instructor
teases her because she knows things
about Star Wars
that a person in her position
shouldn't admit to knowing
and she wears this shame
as a secret thrill

Monday, May 3, 2010

May 3rd, 2010

a cup of tea

when your mouth is dry and pasty
and your day feels a tad bit wastey
i heartily suggest you contemplate
a restorative cup of tea.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

April 30th, 2010

i forgot about today.

that happens when you are busy
thinking about tomorrow.

May 1st, 2010

a three-stanza, abab poem about haiku
for patrick

in the land of the tokyo tower
in a place known for ninjas who duel
people know language has power
as long as it's written with rules

the format is simplistic and sweet
a pattern of 5-7-5 is the scheme
syllables count more than the beat
the images make up each scene

a favourite of children and teachers
within "the land of the rising sun"
the haiku itself has no equal
and writing them really is fun.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Aprl 29th, 2010

when someone offers to do something nice for you
you should let them.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

April 28th, 2010


i really need to buy replacement blades for that razor.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

April 27th, 2010


he doesn't want to marry her.

he realizes it once he's proposed. he's sitting across from her at the dining room table, the dishes with remnants of the meal they've just eaten, the one he' s just cooked for her, in front of them, and he's holding the ring out, it's in his hand, suspended above the table between them, and he's staring at her, and she's smiling, that big, toothy smile of hers, so wide he can almost see her tonsils, for god's sake, and she's saying, "yes! oh, scotty, yes!" her voice is so high and he's always hated when she calls him scotty, his name isn't even scott, it's david, but he's scottish so his friends call him scotty and she just started doing it, three years ago, and he has never told her to stop, never had the heart, or the strength, and looking at her giant, wet smile and her hair, too frizzy, too shaggy, too short, (sticking up in what she thinks is a hispter cut but it's really just bad) all over her head and she's shrieking "yes! yes! i have to call juliet!" and she grabs the ring and he sees there is food on her fingers, some tomato sauce or something and she crams the ring on and she leaps up from her chair and comes around the table to kiss him with that awful, wet, too-wide mouth and he wonders, "how does one go from love to hate in only four words?" and "what the fuck am i going to do now?"

Monday, April 26, 2010

April 26th, 2010

family planning

she sees them
two children, maybe there are three,
waiting up ahead.
the tallest one is maybe nine, ten, she's holding
the hand of a smaller girl, maybe six, five
and there' one in the back, it's a boy
the one she didn't see at first,
he's in the grass behind his sisters,
squeaking blades between his fat fingers.

is there a father? she can't tell
not yet
sometimes she thinks he's there but at other times
like right now
it's just the children, their father nowhere to be found.
he's not even a memory
he's not even named
as though it will just be her and the children,
her children

but then at other times,
when the sun is bright and she's feeling well-rested,
when she's not feeling so old, so alone, so despairing
she can see him, and he's a partner, he's her partner,
and he's standing beside them, the little boy in his arms
and sometimes seeing them this way makes her heart race
with happiness
and sometimes it makes her heart ache
and she weeps.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

April 25th, 2010


your eyes are green today;
your heart afire with envy
burning through your eyes.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

April 24th, 2010

Sloppy Joes


Friday, April 23, 2010

April 23rd, 2010

yesterday was earth day but today i hate the earth

it is snowing on the earth today
and the snow is a blizzard
and the blizzard is a hazard
and the hazard is a heartache
because it's keeping me
from you

Thursday, April 22, 2010

April 22nd, 2010

sometimes the day is best left

April 21st, 2010

i have
too much
to do

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

April 20th, 2010

this is love this is love this is love

i say, name three things that i love

and you say, coffee, pizza, wood-burning.

this last one is a joke, but i don't get it,
not right away
but when i do i am laughing
because it's a good joke, yes
but also because
you know me so well
you know to make jokes
i forget
i've already made.

Monday, April 19, 2010

April 19th, 2010

you can see it starting to dissolve
and there is nothing you can do about it.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

April 18th, 2010

how many times
have i stood beside your car
the window rolled down
our foreheads pressed together
and whispered
"drive safe"
and then
"i love you"
and then watched you pull away
your hand raised
and waiving
through the back window
and then gone inside to wait out the four or five or six hour agony
for the call
that tells me you've made it home okay

April 17th, 2010


we ate pizza on our first date
do you remember? we crashed into my apartment
at 2am after that party
and you said, let's order a pizza
and it was likely then i sort of fell in love

and since then we have eaten so much pizza
in so many places
and so many moods

you could say pizza is our crust
and our love is the cheese

but that would be a bit embarrassing
so i won't.

April 16th, 2010

Thursday, April 15, 2010

April 15th, 2010

My brain is filled with stuffing
My nose is sore and raw
I am tired
I am aching

...I wish I could plagiarize.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

April 14th, 2010

your muscles are sore and aching
you feel like your heart is breaking,
you bail on work and for once you're not faking...

you know you must be sick.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

April 13th, 2010

i am writing this
during commercials

tuesday is glee and lost day

so you can't blame me, really
my creativity is all caught up
in the singing, dancing,
and time travel on screen

Monday, April 12, 2010

April 12th, 2010

there is nothing like
eating soup
and talking pornography's role in the women's movement
in a friend's kitchen
on a monday afternoon.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

April 11th, 2010

To Do Lists

they include the regular, things like
make lunch
get groceries -- and then i make a separate list, labeled groceries, so i know what to buy --
sort recycling

and sometimes i write down the names of people to call, like
call keri (sister) and keri (friend)

and sometimes it's creative nudges like
write 500 words
30 minutes of tap practice

but lately the lists have included things like
get dressed

like i'm elderly and need to remind myself how to function
as though i'm losing my mind
but that's not it
i am simply organizing my survival

it is into chaos that people dissolve

leave the house
speak to someone
other than yourself and his answering machine

April 10th, 2010

three stanzas for amber

we give you the power
we give it up
it's not a surrender, though
it's a defeat

the closer we get to love
the closer we get to fear

instead of safe
in your arms i am unsettled
instead of calm this thing is dangerous
the better it gets the worse it is

Friday, April 9, 2010

April 9th, 2010

not quite cheating

there is an cliff edge
there is a sidewalk curb
a precipice
upon which she teeters
she walks it and sometimes
gets too close to the edge

alcoholics have to stay away from bars
and she's the same

April 8th, 2010

Plastic Surgery is a Soap Opera's Best Friend

-Please help us

-I'm in this just as deep as my sister is
there's no way out


-what's that?
a woman enters, she has had reconstructive surgery in order to look like lauren
you'll never pull this off, you know why?
you don't have any class.

-get me lauren's purse. and her wedding ring.

-no, no!

-give it to me or i'll cut it off. she rips off the ring and puts it on her own finger. mind the animals, kiddies. it' time for lauren to go home.

April 7th, 2010


April 6th, 2010

catchup haiku

i have been behind
by four days for a week now
i promise to catch up

April 5th, 2010

i have been defeated
by tap dance

by the f'lap-shuffle-heel-step
by the toe-heel-toe and the
stamp cramp roll
by the sickening turns
and the twinkles
and the triple-time-steps
the chugchug backflap toe

there is a rhythm to this
i'm missing
my mind wanders during the paddle turns
and by the time i've spun out the rest of you are
leaping forward but i'm only just
ball-changing back

Thursday, April 8, 2010

April 4th, 2010

watching the CBC news

Bob MacDonald:
Two fossilized skulls
were found --
a mother and son --
they only lived two million years ago
in South Africa
and now we don't know
how we went there from there to here.

Peter Mansbridge:
I don't know. They kind of look like hockey masks to me.

Bob MacDonald:
Thank you, Peter.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

April 3rd, 2010

Heart Ache

she says, "my chest hurts", and it does--
an ache that begins deep in the muscle,
sort of off to the side,
and she presses her hands into herself, doubled over, and sits.

"I'm just going to wait it out, you guys have fun," and she watches the dancing
from the sidelines, in her chest this hot, heavy weight

she spent all afternoon in emerg,
where they did everything
(x-rays and blood work and someone hooked her up to a monitor and they watched her heart beating regularly, like, well, like a heartbeat) but they learned nothing, they said it was nothing

and they sent her home

but the truth is,
the one she didn't share with them
is that her boyfriend
her great, galumphing boyfriend,
the one who'd taken her grandmother for lunch, the one who held her purse when she used public washrooms, the one who filled her freezer with ice cream that time she fought with her sister, the one who would bite the back of her neck at just the right time
he'd left her

"i just don't think i'm ready to commit", he'd said, as though committing were a choice, as though committing weren't something he'd been doing since the first night he'd gotten her number and said, "I'll call you" and then he called.

"after four years", she whispers and the ache in her chest expands, the heat of it fills her up and pushes up her throat and fills up her mouth, her eyes, until it is streaming out of her in gasps, in tears, and the rest of them keep dancing while her hands, pressed to her pain, try but fail to keep it all inside...

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

April 2nd, 2010

That Year When You Were The Department Chair And I'd Just Figured Out Death

When I was seven
or eight
and couldn't sleep
I'd find you in the living room
sleepless, too

you would let me sit up with you
in the darkness
you in a beige bathrobe and me in pyjamas
we'd sit
close to the television, our chairs pulled up
to the tiny set
like we were peering into a crystal ball or
some kind of secret
and you would drink scotch
and i would drink milk
from a scotchglass
and we'd wait for the danger to pass

Monday, April 5, 2010

April 1st, 2010

April Fools

He has two lips for kissing
when he's saying good night,
Two arms for holding
you to his chest, tight

Two eyes for gazing
on you with abandon
Ten fingers entwining
whatever they land in

Your one heart's for giving,
"I love you," you say.
His two ears for hearing,
his two feet for running away...

Friday, April 2, 2010

March 31st, 2010

every day of this
is a trip to a foreign land

i don't know your customs and you are struggling to adapt to mine
in these early days
it is so easy to offend you
and i misinterpret so much

our unfamiliarity with this whole other country
it gets us into trouble
and yet we are learning to love
this other place
we visit
each time we meet

March 30th, 2010


walking dogs
dropping easter eggs filled with messages and promises and stories along broadway for passersby to discover
tap dance
the young and the restless

Thursday, April 1, 2010

March 29th, 2010

March in Saskatchewan

Rip the plastic off the windows,
Rake the dust from the front lawn.
Find a shovel,
Turn the compost,
Because winter's nearly gone.

Raise the blinds and open curtains,
Extra blankets in a stack.
But keep your
long johns handy --
Because winter's almost back!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

March 28th, 2010

we are each alone
in our own lonely way

March 27th, 2010

Long Distance

I have been driving this highway for 900 days
and i know each mile by heart

Some claim an intimate knowledge of a lover's body
her hips and skin
her freckles as familiar as
his own

This highway is my lover
her flaws I have accepted,
Over 900 days I have become as regretfully patient
as a partner

I watch out for hazards,
unexpected weather;
I turn the lights on in the dark
and keep driving
my eyes ever watching for signs
that I'm almost home

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

march 26th, 2010

he passes a palm over
weary eyes
and closes them

when they open
they are looking at you
and they are still so tired.

you don't move
you don't dare move
you don't dare

but if you keep breathing
you might just see this through

Monday, March 29, 2010

march 25, 2010


you had just stepped into the shower when
your nose began to bleed
thr left nostril
streaming blood and i shrank away

i was soaped up and slippery
but the blood trailed through
your beard like a game of plinko

"it looks worse than it is," you said
and i took your word for it and finished up my shower

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

March 24th 2010

a yellow paperback
with green-trimmed pages
sits on a side table,
it's corners dogeared and waiting

while the girl watches television
and thinks about reading
the paperback
but never does

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

March 23rd, 2010

There is a poem inside every day
but there are days when
I don't know
where to find it.

Monday, March 22, 2010

March 22nd, 2010

Spring Back

Most people love spring.

I don't.

I don't love the puddles cracking open to
their murky bottoms and crusted edges

I don't love the snow that melts and runs and then ices back over again in ugly, uneven patches
threatening passersby with slippery surfaces
I don't love the false hope of sunshine when it's only almost-warm
the way shoes get damp, and then the cold leaches through and stains your socks with a wet that will never, ever dry

and then there's the dogshit

dissolving into the mud, into the sodden lawn
under a dark-edged sky

I don't love the green grass poking up through the fading snow
the burble of a newly woken river
the lyrical voices of birds come home to nest

people say spring is Hope, it's Life, it's yellow chicks portending possibilities

but i only see promises waiting to be broken
in those flowers which are aching to bloom

Sunday, March 21, 2010

March 21st 2010

You left your house in the midst of a prairie winter
to see if you could hack it in the heat of a far-off jungle
and returned to an early melt.

The basement walls had become a sieve, they were
running like a waterfall
and you had one instinct, only:
staunch the flow,
stop the water before it ate the concrete,
destroyed the foundation,
caved in the supports and tumbled your house into a heap:
you wanted to save your house
you wanted to stop this collapse

But here is another way of looking at it:

You could have stepped back
let the earth move
let the water come in

Wrapping the walls in plastic is only a bandaid solution
a temporary measure
you cannot stop time
with a sump pump
you cannot prevent the inevitable
which is the rising up of nature
the invasion of melted snow
the earth taking back what it rightfully wants

Step aside
and let nature take its course
stop imposing your vision
onto a structure
that is more than its crumbling basement cement
let the walls come down and see
what grows up
in their place

March 6th, 2010

sometimes silence is all you can hope for

descend into the quiet

hope for calm

patience will expand and fill the spaces

that love's cacaphony only crowds

March 5th, 2010

to become a ninja
eat sushi and clotted cream
also: watch your head

March 4th, 2010

Eating Tikka Masala in Vietnam

the air is wet
we move so slowly through these streets
but finally an Indian restaurant has us laughing
because this naan and mutter paneer
all of a sudden are familiar
and taste like home

you put your hand out
I lay mine next to it, our palms facing

"I can feel you, although we are not touching"

we are connected
through the warmth of
as it radiates from our skin

March 3rd, 2010

there are days when all your living
overtakes your life

March 2nd, 2010

...ocean view beach resort....
....montgomerie links...
...investment opportunity!...
....crowne international casino... or own...

these English words under white faces
on billboards strung along the
Pacific Coast highway between
Hoi An and Danang

it would seem the Yankees have
finally won the war
the Viet Cong beaten back by golf clubs,
the surrender to the all-you-can-eat
seafood buffet, while
Ho Chi Minh, defeated, sips
cocktails at the swim up bar
the sun blazing high in the west

March 1st, 2010

Motorbike Karma

You might as well look at the bright side
    --as searing as the Saigon sun--
you can only know how truly good you are
when you realize how truly terrible you felt being truly bad.

February 28th 2010

February 28th 2010

Cua Dai Road

they told us there was a tsunami warning
but we went to the beach, anyway

you rented us a motorbike
and drove us along the hot, dry road
to meet the Pacific

my head on your shoulder
my arms wrapped around your waist
like a love song