Hollowed out

Eviscerated by volatile events

Gutted over strenuous years

Tattered edges frayed

Shredded in perpetual exposure
Yet it stands

Inexorably upright

Defiantly sun-reflective

Vibrant streamside

Against all odds


Words and Birds

In the darkest
Of her days
Twin beacons
Sustained her
Transported her
Through the inferno
And beyond

To survival

Avian visitors
Fluttered and flapped
Past her window slit
Into her imagination
Burgeoning hope
In external miracles
Worldly peace

Verbs, nouns and adjectives
Swooped and drifted
Past guilt and despair
Into her soul
Lifting expression
Voicing angst, anger, pain
Ventilating agony

On a wing and a verse
Synonym snapshot
Verbal portrait
Observational oratory
She built a bridge
Above Dante-ion abyss
To a livable life

Vagina Politics

My vagina

Along with those

Of all the foremothers

And all my sisters

Every race, creed and color


Is held to account

For every action and reaction

Erection and ejaculation

Of all penises

Within cruise missile range


My flawed cavern

Is cause of misjudgments

I am much too intelligent

To ever have committed

I am repeatedly reminded

While simultaneously accused

Of using my wily organ

To corrupt and subvert

Penis-headed right activity


Ownership of said aperture

While the embodiment of

My weakness



Foments the mystifying misbehavior

Of elsewise well-behaved

Carryin’ career criminals


I know why penises

Blame us vagina owners

For their missteps

This source of ecstasy and comfort

That baffles and befuddles

Humbles and contorts

In moments intimate and obscene


It is incomprehensible

When my sisters

Equally gifted and afflicted

Wield the sharpest swords

In the vicious dismemberment

Of my vulnerable core


Inexplicably oxymoronic

I am possessor

Of the orifice

Most powerful of all

While weak and tainted

Beyond imaging


With such power

In my being

My nucleus implodes upon

The enigmatic dilemma

Over which I have

Zero control


No third person distance here

This story is my own




Back in the real world


She looks, walks and talks the part

Suburban professional

Soccer mom

(Minus the soccer playing children, now grown)

She knows this world

Can speak it’s language

Follow it’s unspoken rules


Yet surrealities abound


She was dragged

At gunpoint

Chained and shackled

Into hell (*prison)

Left to languish in

Fetid anguish

Befitting the evil


She walked from the gates

Shoulders squared

To catcalls of “hey Shawty”

From cell windows

Forever scarred

AND strong, resilient

As never before


She used her “mom voice”

With gang banging drug dealers

Sunday morning in the

Halfway house dining room

Hands akimbo

Asserting her rights

In a right-less world


She strode to the podium

Spoke her public shame

While advocating

For openness

In doors and minds

For herself, unemployed

And countless compatriots


She walked the tightrope

Of abject gratitude

At opportunity offered

With resurrected saleswomanship

Articulating strengths

Owning existent skills

Surviving incarceration


She proves herself

In early morning promptness

Dedicated attentiveness

Creative self-directedness

The wearing of multiple

Unlabeled hats

As she walks a mile


In these ill-fitting new shoes

Life Moments

In moments she lives life

Normally, as if

In today’s vernacular

Normal was a thing


She drives to work

Lead-footed as always

Focused on tasks up-coming

Until she remembers

A speeding ticket

Could violate her probation

Prompt prison’s return


She speaks her mind

With authority

Borne of decades’ experience

Hard won knowledge and education

Forgetting the felony

That stripped her of all

Authority, dignity, voice


She laughs, spontaneously

Struck by incident or comment

Hilarious, incongruous or ironic

That tickles her

Sensibilities, funny bone

Oblivious to the wreckage

Of the life which she inhabits


She dances

Twirled and spun

By the glorious updraft

Of a song, bird or human

Or blessing of the sun

Insensible to her unending

Incomprehensible grief


She lives

Moment by moment

Day by day

In a life bereft

Of all she would formerly

Have deemed crucial

To survive and thrive


And moment by moment

Surprising herself

With innate tenacity

She lives