What’s wrong with

making love to your husband who no longer lives with you the night before you leave for your weekend retreat just because he, having agreed to overlap your early departure to care for your small son, appears in the bathroom naked and erect as you sit steeping. What’s wrong with slipping under the lifted wing he has made of the … Read More

Dear sparkly superball,

My son has made for you a Mommy’s house–– primary-colored shack of Legos with two cactus flowers stacked alongside the racecar flag. And Daddy’s house, a press of plastic, pastel blocks that seem to be all fingers wanting to weave. This compound has no door, so we lift then lower the roof when it is time for your nap. We … Read More

Bai Hua

There is a child in China. I do not speak her language, she does not speak mine. What I hold are clippings of her life in translation. The day she admitted she had something to say, someone wrote it down. Rice could make the classroom beautiful. She painted what the marker could not sustain. Making beauty last: Bai Hua’s feet … Read More

I want my eggs

soft and in between destinies the yolk undecided the white a nimbus of coagulated light haloing its small yellow sun as I have lived trained to the perimeter of what is most alive in me, accomplice to and bearer of its diminishing light.


the dogs have followed me downstairs like heartbreak. sadness is our habit. i cannot find kindness on the shelves. i have no recipe. only eggs and butter and faith. there is no saving grace, no blame, no place of rest. until i trust the sun to its own descent, forgiveness breaks me down to dust the waves carry me out … Read More

Queen of Wands

Calling our beasts by their proper names means letting go of hope and its long distance ecstasies. Each rightful companion has her own ending place. Grief the graveyard of names. In the open space, exchange. I lost panther to gain leopard. My hair let go of its color and as I let go of my pain even my leopard started … Read More

First Law of Thermodynamics

My son begins to notice other kids have one home with two parents in it. We are driving and he wants to know why Daddy can’t live with us. The oil tanker is all mirror. It returns us stretched wide to ourselves. I never wanted to be moving forward in all directions at once, but here we are, inverted, the … Read More

Dear Divorce,

Your branding iron hovers over me as if there were only one way to give up hope. The lawyer has advised me who owes what. How we can expect to be judged. There are precedents for everything in the unwinding of yours from mine. I know there have been endless sons shuttled from half-home to half-home that won’t add up to anything … Read More


Gravity borrows her name from the bird who stopped trying. He said the poem was a hinge, that a bird fell into her womb from the well. There is no law that can convince me otherwise. Call in the scientists if you must and name their theories after themselves. Our entire lives, after all, are comprised of the world looking … Read More