Tuesday, December 2, 2008

February 2008


[or, Bard in the Yard]

If Billy Collins came to my house,

The first thing he would not see

would be the neglected landscaping.


The gall of blackberries gone wild,

Now binding patio furniture to the deck,

[Really] a keen advantage in the high March winds.

The aged cracks in the walk, pure guile.

The torn awning, picturesque, flapping above small skates,

Bent Hula hoops and rusted rakes;

Still life in motion.

At the door the cocky duck sculpture

Would make him smile, assured.

He would feel at home before I even

Answered his knock.

If Billy Collins came to talk to me,

We both would prefer coffee over tea,

With fresh blackberry ice cream, and later –


We would say who we liked and who we didn’t;

Just like that,

And not always agree.

“This is such a surprise,” I would say,

Feeling suddenly shy.

“Why have you come?”

“I saw your calico cat caught

between heaven and hell,

Armies of armored tendrils holding her back

from mounting her attack on a fly.

Did you know your massive blackberry

Patch can be seen from the sky?”

-Jane Rogan
Inspired by: I.K., B. H. and of course, B.C.
Written as an apology for my husband, Phil
February 22, 2008

Michael, the dancer

It is a full moon on your death,

And all I can think about is your life;

How you turned my kitchen upside down

For the sake of the gravy last Thanksgiving;

How you made my children laugh with your

Funny faces and fart noises at the table;

How your body flexes and bends to your

Demands, leaps and curls, writhes to the poetry

And song of the dance, to the snap of it all.

I watch you now, your life dance an India rubber ball;

Bouncing out of bounds, retrieved with a big slobbery pant,

Now large, now small, crouched in a quiet corner of the universe.

The spotlight that follows you casts a long shadow,

Missing its mark.

We try to fill it with meaning and are not

Successful because no one ever is doing that.

It is empty, this shadow dance.

But then

We try to fill it with love

And the dance begins.

The dance will be because of you;

Because of you we will move in ways

We would not otherwise know.

-Jane Rogan
March 2005

Full Moon Shell Game

You can't write full moon poetry

When there is no full moon

You can't save those peppy whiticisms

Prognosticate what you might say

Foresee what you will feel

and then say you wrote them on the full moon

That's just not honest

That's not the full moon

You can't protect yourself from

When the full moon does not inspire

When it is shrouded in clouds

When the eclipse cannot be seen

Even though you know it is there

Somebody told you so

You see so many people writing full moon poetry

Make something up

Just to fit in

That's not full moon poetry

Go outside

The day of that moon

Listen to what she is singing

Even if it is wet and dripping

and you cannot see that moon

she is saying

do your taxes

Now that is full moon poetry

-Eric Moes


Lust and the room grew

small as zero.


So, I escaped everyday

to my silly restaurant job

watched Santo

in the kitchen peeling shrimp,

extracting blue veins from flesh,

with the kind of grace

you lacked.


There’s no salvation

in distractions,

only moments

of “what ifs” driving me

back to the ocean

to search the seaweed

and sewage.


Clawless crab, gull bones, syringe.

Man of War, deflated and blue

like balloons the morning after a party.

I carry them home

set them on the bathroom sink next to the soap dish.

You don’t want to touch them.

-Terri Carrion

When I Stopped Dreaming This Morning

When I stopped dreaming this morning

black trees upon a white mist

quietly sought my eyes

making me

their untakeable offer.

As the white sun ascending

cleared the clouds,

I became convinced

I had a home

in a shred of mist

clinging to a redwood branch.

Later, when the day

broke off a fragment of blue

to share with the children playing

in the black and orange garden,

I wondered how

I had ever failed to love

the leaf-strewn bench

too cold to sit on.

When the moon rose,

we agreed to resolve our differences.

Then, I began to dream.

-Deanna Hopper

February 2005