Inside, Outside

June 22, 2019 12:02 pm #3

Through the house, past dead ants,
dusty floors and bookcases overfull with books
and games and more dust.

I push the neglected can of prayer requests
in front of the door to hold it open.

The warm air outside makes the
house feel cool.
Stepping outside, I smell bacon.

The cicadas are singing. I walk through
an invisible thread of spider silk
strung across the drive.

On the cement, tiny ants are busy.
Behind the crack in the pavement, and
the poke bush, the hydrangea
has a pink flower.

Near the mailbox, I pick up a yellow leaf
and a small red one. I leave the pecans
lie. Next door the neighbor’s lawn is as
neatly groomed as mine is not.  English
ivy, elaeagnus and trees grow at
will over here.

A car goes by. Through
the newly trimmed bushes I see
my wild yard.

Detroit Summers

June 22, 2019 10:57 am #2

We spent sunny summer Saturdays in
our grandparents’ yard.
Squeezed into the swing
under the apple tree,
we rode
the magic carpet to adventures,
barely escaping monsters lurching towards
us down the dirt path.
“Geni of the magic carpet, go, go, go!”

We bridled our sawhorses with jump
ropes, throwing Nanny’s pillows on
for saddles. Our tents leaned against
the old chicken house or the
wooden slide we waxed with a candle to

Sometimes we splashed through
the red and green
wadding pool.
Once Barbara said she saw Mershell,
our little ghost uncle, looking out
of the upstairs window at us.

Four generations ate
lunch by the snowball bush
on a board and sawhorse table.
All I remember is the
pineapple juice in metal cups,
so cold and
vanilla ice cream
cones, a maraschino cherry on top.

Come evening, we squashed into the car, two
sisters and their five children,
singing home across town.

I Am

June 22, 2019 9:35 am #1

I am the notebook and
the pencil.
I am the flow of words.

I am the branch of red leaves,
and the green bamboo
in my neighbor’s yard.

I am the truck and the workers, the
orange shirt and the stripped vest. I
am the bags of leaves
they handle.

I am the candles and the flames
on the altar.

I am the dot at the end of
this line.