First Day Of Winter

First day of winter
whiff of skunk under cream cloud
river dark and slow

Sweet Goal

I dreamt that I scored
a sweet goal in the World Cup
and then I woke up

Freedom’s Scent

My dreams remind me
that I don’t know who I am –
they bear freedom’s scent

Loose Mesh

The loose mesh of mind
catches so much, lets so much
slip through without trace

Solstice Tree

A parrot’s flying
parallel to the ceiling
clinging to the fir

Changing Shape

Aftermath of love
when the dead are mists in mind
changing shape, color


The oaks are charcoal
on cloud as a gray squirrel
dives into ivy

At Haulover Bay, St. John

How could I have guessed
squid could be so seductive?
love’s not deductive


A tiny litter
of meerkats in my office
on a shelf of dreams


I am older now
than I’ve ever been, younger
than I’ll ever be

School On Magnolia

This jade is the last
living remnant of the school
where I taught myself

Wild Rose Tangle

In wild rose tangle
twittering small bird chorus
sings praise of sunlight


I’ve now put to bed
those who once put me to bed –
their last sheets are earth

Ice Ferns

Now sun starts to thaw
ice ferns from the dark puddles
in this muddy trail

Quaint As Clothing

I’m always naked
in my mind, so ideas
seem quaint as clothing


Sun in the tangle
of leafless winter trees makes
a delicate rose

Flicker’s Head

Top of flicker’s head
all the way up an oak, red
hammer on blue sky

Last Day

Last day of the year
my stomach aches for the past,
for the future, too.

How Wishes Travel

How wishes travel
down the generations, work
mischief and music

Black Noose

A black noose of coots
surrounds three snow white still swans
winter visitors

First Day – 2007

First day of this year
and I’m the same old me who
keeps slipping away

Mob Of Robins

A mob of robins
on the glistening green grass –
did they never leave?

Pink And Eager

Just whose tongue is this
in my mouth, pink and eager
even when I’m not?

Much Too Much

No declarations
of hope or bright ambition –
I’ve felt much too much

Fallen Jerusalem, BVI

Rounded rock and blue
sea and sky, Jerusalem
Fallen is just this


I’m leaving behind
tracks to show I didn’t know
where I was going

Final Shore

I’ve started dreaming
about my parents – they have reached
the far final shore

Not Me

The writer’s not me –
if he starts to think he is,
then he’s lost himself

Fog Pillars

Pillars of fog fill
winter morning woods as I
hike toward the sun


This warmest winter
coins January of gold
routs buds from their sleep

Changing Sky

Twenty winters I’ve
stared on these same bare gray oaks
against changing sky

Sunday Morning

Sunday morning, tea
and late oranges, sound of Bach
across seas of time

Deeper Mind

What my senses say
is question and answer both
for my deeper mind

Looking Away

Wisdom of looking
away from what I am, from
changing how of now


What I undertake
each day is but prelude to
last undertaking

Spring In Winter, January, 2007

The purple crocus
have now joined the wild parade
of spring in winter

No Confusion

White dog and gray cat
basking in warm winter air
show no confusion

Rain On Slate

The white dog asleep,
rain on the slate roof, gray cat
hiding under porch

Far From Home

In winter sunlight,
the pink orchid’s opening
so far from its home

Far Away

Songs from far away
and long ago, Bahia,
where beauty found me

Blue The Sky

How blue the sky is,
how many times I’ve said this,
how blue this sky is

Color Of Milk

At last it’s turned cold
and the puddles are frozen –
ice color of milk

Sunlight And Shadow

Sunlight and shadow
chase each other through the day
till blood tips the west


My mind is a crowd
each one with a crowd inside,
each with a story

One Voice

I’m a crowd, can’t speak
with one voice, but must wander
one voice to the next

Greenest Habit

The greenest habit,
is the greenest habitat,
how mind sings itself

To Gaze At The Moon

I’m turning away
from what I might come to know
to gaze at the moon


Here is where I am
and here, too, is what I am –
grizzled old fool – yes


My brain is slowing
and I ask “Better or worse?”
freedom’s not knowing

Wave After Wave

As seacoasts withstand
wave after wave, so we bear
our deep hopes’ dashing

Lone Point

That one cardinal
is the lone point of color
in winter landscape

Ten Years Past

Ten years past I met
a bald eagle on this branch –
for me he ‘s still here

Snow Drops

Snow drops are blooming
in this strange January
that can’t make one flake

Black Snail

Here’s a small black snail
with convoluted chambers,
its own life of sense

So Quiet

If I could open
the door into white dog’s dream
I’d keep so quiet


Gray cat is asleep
on the newspaper – I can’t
bear to disturb her

No Snow

White tails of brown does,
white of swans, white dog trotting
blue lake’s winter rim


Late afternoon light
intricacies of meeting
half a moon in blue


High in leafless oak
black vase shape of crow, watching
featureless blue sky


In a sand island
in the stream, cuneiform
imprint of deer hooves

Throwing Books Away

Throwing books away
after a lifetime’s reading –
no print in my heart

Yellow Bloom

Under this gray sky
witch hazel’s in yellow bloom
by the old white oak

New Bridge

Tiny children cross
creek on new fallen oak bridge –
they’re bright with delight

Like Skin

This form’s so simple
I’m almost ashamed of it,
but it fits like skin


The monk in the flames
can’t step out to talk to me –
I have to go in

Bright Shooting Stars

Rainbows in the hills
by day and bright shooting stars
above the night wind

My Company

I find myself here –
I’m glad of my company –
two hermits in one


Now there’s quiet here –
I don’t know where it’s come from
or how it got here

Next To Nothing

All I can put down
of me is next to nothing –
so I nuzzle it


Simplest things escape
like moths in silver moonlight –
no calling them back

Dawn’s Red Ribbon

The bare oaks impale
dawn’s red ribbon on their tines,
lift it as it grows

On Mei Yao-ch’en’s “Mourning For My Wife, Three Poems”

A thousand long years
before my birth Mei Yao Ch’en
knew my love and grief

Late Winter

I’m already drunk –
cherry blossom ecstasy
is born in winter

Fox On New Snow

A fox on new snow,
the great big red bushy tail’s
sleek gliding shadow


The phantom desire
rules my life and makes me want
what I do not want

Wisps Of Smoke

High up in the sky
migrating geese – wisps of smoke
without a chimney

Snow Storm

From featureless cloud
falling white flapping tatters
become one earth sheet


Sweet, babble of doves
late in winter as snow melts
and the snow drops bloom

Blue Pair

A blue pair of jays
in the bare weeping cherry
under charcoal sky


is a country all its own
where I am not me

Applause of Coots

The applause of coots
taking off from this small lake
that’s still half frozen

A New Peep

Spring light’s suddenness
changes the cardinals’ song –

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