Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus) photograph by Michael Baytoff

Piping Plover (Charadrius melodus) photograph by Michael Baytoff

August 27, 2013 – Re-Instatement August 20, 2013

They turn us off, they turn us on,
they hope it satisfices –
they banish us, invite us back,
and think that it suffices –

they are a stain, a plague, a curse
a lame excuse for leaders –
they cover-up, they obfuscate,
they lie and trick the readers.

Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Cyclamen, 1922

Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Cyclamen, 1922

August 26, 2013 – Last Day in Purgatory

My last day in Purgatory
and I am writing haiku
about it. I should be out –
celebrating the end of this passage –
not at this table, trying to reduce
it all to words, to symbols, to
hieroglyphs on postcards.
I’ll take a walk to the Post Office.

Buffalo wings recipe, Rochester, NY

Buffalo wings recipe, Rochester, NY

August 25, 2013 – Restoration Haiku

Black knight to G 2 –
one move left. Black bishop zooms in!
game is up. Checkmate!

Silly games we play –
courage, we lack; truth, avert –
the same sad ends. We reach.

Marcel Duchamp, 1887-1968. Comb. 1916.

Marcel Duchamp, 1887-1968.   Comb.  1916.

August 24, 2013 – L.A. Times

I’m not much for contests
and competitions – all that
reminds me of work, of a life
I want only in the rear-view
mirror. Nonetheless, I submitted
two poems to the L.A. Times
Op-Poetry call. They may not
choose my poems. They may.

11th century church, Assisi

11th century church, Assisi

August 22, 2013 – Pocket Compass

And old friend brought me back
a gift
from a market in Afghanistan

a brass pocket compass with
a poem
inscribed in the screw-on cover

it’s final verse (engraved
in words
too small for 57-yr-old eyes) reads:

“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –
I took the on less traveled by,
and that has made all the difference.”

The Wheelchair Heart Symbol

The Wheelchair Heart Symbol

August 23, 2013 – Postcard Poems

I treasure receiving these
postcard poems –
and so I send in hopes
that I’ll receive –
today I expected to harvest
a bumper crop –
but none came.

Still, twelve have arrived,
so I go back
and re-read them all,
one by one,
line by line.

A lovely stack of thoughts –
my treasure,
my winning lottery ticket,
my pot of gold
at the end of the rainbow.

#1522 Bartolome Estaban Murillo 1617-1682 Die Wurfelspieler

#1522   Bartolome Estaban Murillo  1617-1682  Die Wurfelspieler

August 21, 2013 – Lady Day (a sonnet, sort of)

I could listen to Lady Day
sing – all night long –
those blue minor chords that
don’t quite seem to fit
except for their perfection;
those flat notes that fall so
softly from her lips, like
manna, to our awaiting souls –
like dew, early, early
before sunrise…
I could listen to those
old songs all night long –
“Bend your branches down –
along the ground – and cover me.”