Two More Athletes

Jan Železný

The world needs Jan Železný,
His javelin to travel far,
Launching us beyond belief,
Exhausting the possible limits.
We need his Olympic records
To remind us that, if not greater
Than our ancestors, we can be
Superior to our own average.

Toni Turek

A football God, Toni Turek.
He caught the winds of fate,
Pushed ball lightening over his bar
And smothered fires on his line.
The miracle of the miracle at Bern
Was that a human being
Intercepted information,
Replacing an instant for an instant,
Editing headlines and history,
And like a time traveler
Waking far from where he slept.

Marsh Madness

More alive than a landslide
More brimming than prairie potholes
More eventful than a carnival
It is all the wings that keep it afloat
All the dragonflies that drive it
It’s a sea bound by old poetries
The single vine of multiple waters
And mother of all nurseries
It’s the face of migrating flocks
With reeds rioting for the sun
The hive of every insect alive
Like a water lotus and pod
It’s the blazing before brumation
The hunger before the torpor
The carp that swallows the moon
Before its resting state in hypnotic cold

Apple Orchard Art Class

Paint the cider you taste
With a tint you create.

The golden delicious
Should ripen on the palette.

The brushstrokes
Ought to flower into fruit.

The composition
Must bare transition.

The rot at the core
Nature itself will restore.

Lastly, give the picture
A reason for being,

A return for all the beauty
And for all abundance.

A bushel, ladders,
A human shadow, an answer.

Old Men

The world’s come to an end.
Old men killed my last friend.
Old men hide what they hoard
Like goblins encrypting gold.
It’s a myth that old men are wise
That’s more or less a fool’s guise.
Truth is grandfathers go insane
As though panic shares a mutual brain,
And even with incontinence
They seek control of continents.
They brag about their health
And inflate the value of their wealth.
They talk tough but shake to the bone
When the grim reaper’s on the phone.
Old men wage real imaginary wars
With everyone except guarantors
And by killing those they don’t know
Add microseconds with which to oppose
The long night of their own souls.


Everyone dies here,
Everyone’s born here,
The animal body leaps in,
The water body leaps out,
Foam washes in and out,
Spirit laughs
In the face of the spray,
Spirit goes in naked,
A swimmer emerges
On another shore.

Power Outage

Better a blown transformer
Than the heart stopped loving.

Better a blown fuse
To a restless muse.

Bitter the burn
Only felt in the urn.

Better a grid failure
Than to evade Cupid’s arrow.

Better a power surge
Than to have no urge.

Behind all the darkness
Begins the undressing.

Better a blackout
Than to let passion die out.

Between these outages
The light of the sages.

Better downed power lines
Than to ageing, resign.

The night is electric,
The body dialectic.

It’ll be dark forever
And touch will be never.

The Creutzfeldt-Jacob Sonata

My brother’s dying mind
Applies another gauze over his eyes.
It’s as though my brother
Has become his own third person.
It’s as though these prions
Are cementing him in dying,
Folding exponentially
So he’s dead before demise,
As though his perception
Can’t understand
Sinking in his own sand.
Only music penetrates
Like a first religion
The dimmest regions
And grants a sense of self,
Stimulating him
To conduct with his hands,
Almost joyously, mindlessly,
Like a conductor of the damned.

First Light

The first summer oriole
Both color and choral.

The summer equinox
Redoubles the lake light.

A sun dog in the north
Melts the eye of ice.

Initial inches of rain
Produce more grain.

Foremost the waterways
Must have their say.

Primary to the present
The future having no forests.

Earlier to being right
Honesty has plain sight.

Latest to wake
A young garter snake.

A maiden dragonfly
Cuts close to eventide.

Pioneers to these places
New growth races.

The first river otters
Return to our waters.

Growing Wild

In fifteen minutes of walking
I’ve discovered purple loosestrife,
Virginia creepers, hemp agrimony,
Blue vervain, horseweed, goldenrod,
Giant ragweed, Queen Anne’s lace,
Water hyssop, and clematis…
If I keep walking down this path
I’ll discover all the names of the earth.
As at the beginning of life
As at the end of death,
I’ll take root in the sun,
I’ll turn green and grow wild.