my heart was petrified

fossilized remains

of tenderness

turned to stone

under voluminous ash

on sight, you intuited

its squishy loving center

under the calcified layers

I felt a crumpling

beneath the heat-lamp

of the soul in your eyes

I gave a stern warning

to this wayward heart

cracks in ossification

lead to devastation


my heart was petrified

quaking and quivering

while it ping-pong

between twin ghouls

Loneliness and Pretend I’m Okay

Pretend I’m Okay

a stately presence

marched me past you


on her mission

while Loneliness

saw I caught your eye

I delivered a full lecture

abandoning the lectern

pacing, with emphasis

terrors inherent

in this connection apparent


my heart


hopelessly hopeful

failed this course

in self-protection









with a new lover

invariably involves

comparing of scars

childhood mishaps

in shiny white relief

on forehead, knees and shins

color in early chapters

adulting misadventures

cicatrixed upon hands, arms

character sketch

in smudged charcoal

faded surgical lines


in place of angry red

chronicle a life inhabited

with accidents or infirmities


we disclose our pockmarks

fingertracing the defects

as we murmur

to each other’s skins

narrating full-lived lives

connecting dots

on a sensory treasure map

yet neglect to mention

fissures in our hearts

gashes in our souls

that bleed on contact






Vacation Introspectered

vacationing with ghosts

packs apprehension in her luggage

specters of years shared

memories made

moments tasted

linger in the back of her throat

as she swallows melancholy

apparitions of her beloved

shadow every room

stroll in tandem

down windy country roads

sunbathe beside her

lakeside, longing

they drift among the hours

lazy and relaxed

haunting lackadaisically

ever-present reminders

of love lost, never forgotten

phantom remembrances

hover, visions evergreen

sunsetting in mauve




Epic Glances

I want to look into the eyes

of the you who sees

in my ambered flecks of pain

long traveled travails

not smoky jet trails

of practiced perfidy

I want to hold the gaze

of the you who regards

the lines feather-etched

in optical corners

testaments to smiled miles

not aged allegations

I want mutual glances

to bask in storied tales

tenderly turning the pages

of our life and times

writ of love and heartache

with every kiss of my lips

each slow-motion

wink of an eye

(Artist: unknown)


there is no owners manual

in the afterbirth

this mothering business

takes guesswork

extensive on the job training

my children share my DNA

not necessarily sense

sensibilities or sensitivities

each one a new mystery

my mistakes are many

my devotion never-ending

slivers of my soul

infuse every intention

along this journey

have lurked pitfalls

misguided misdirections

deep valleys and high peaks

despite heartaches

tremulous doubts

shrieking fears

joys are unequivocal

these children

I have been gifted

my most priceless




Take me on a tour of your memories

those hallowed and haunted halls


in the spacing of the photos

lie the glimmers and scratches

floored in your storied soul

I absorb heart’s nooks and crannies

in lightest finger trailing

the tingling of your history

seated within my feelings


among the shadows neglected

dusty framed and absent mats

scrapes and dents and aches

hidden there from yourself

in empathic gazing

I hold your moldy pain

with firm and tender grace


far back in cobwebbed corners

seethe the roaring poisons

wounds packed of soiled gauze

corridors you pass on tiptoe

psyches wrapped, inoculated

we taste bittered embers together

de-ghosting haunts of ghosts

I Wanted…

I wanted you to love me

with chasing puppy enthusiasm

tumbling pell-mell

in your haste to be with me


I wanted you to cherish me

beyond winning buzzer beaters

championships victories and

emblems of grief


I wanted you to kiss me

as a life-affirming dementor

expanding our souls

in their communion


I wanted you to hold me

closer than body-plate

armor against fear

shield from calamity


I wanted you to see me

in foibled wholeness

backbending work in progress

pretzeled imperfection


I wanted you to claim me

rooftop proclaim us

more essential than outrage or

musical celebration


perhaps you did…

in ways mistily translucent

that now cling

hauntingly chilling


encroaching invisibility

corroded my soul

rust-encrusting pain

determination painted


I solved it, of course


eviscerated love on impatient

thrusts of my wounded urgency

I proved myself unworthy

terminally unlovable


you are gone

my heart howls madness

at the waning moon

still wanting