Archive for October, 2008


From the Devil Dog:

October 29, 2008


Three Poems About the Moon for Late October

October 29, 2008

He Does Not Care for This Movie

he won’t say “I love you” or “go to Hell”
though each might apply equally
when she has become the full moon
hiding behind clouds        the Gothic sky
and he is cast as the open book
full of demonic engravings
pages flipping in the wind
he does not care for this movie
twisted shadows gypsy music prophetic poetry
he waits for the book to slam shut         coughing dust
the clouds to slide away like mercury
the moon silver light to rain like bullets
shooting through wayward wolves
the lovers who’ve forgotten
they have been cast aside
the same cursed curs
who scratched at the door
waking the dreamer before she could swallow
the cure

Walking on the Moon*
Tell me, are there many heavens above the moon? — Marlowe

God wept fire.
The Devil spat out the moon.
Angels and demons, and you

toss a bit of silver onto the plate.  You
know the saints swallowed fire.
You know sinners walked on the moon.

You know the pearl in the Virgin’s ear is the moon.
She knows angels and demons
know you.  And you know

the taste of fire.  She walks with you
across the moon.  Through God’s fire
angels and demons and you

spin and stumble and swoon.

Every night the moon is mine — Natalie Imbruglia

you lie
suspended in the black vacuum
of the heart your light bleached
and unoriginal
O dull mirror        every lover’s conceit
how the practitioners cherish you
the single pearl saved
from the broken necklace
O false sun        that you would blind me
just once        that you would hide me
cloudshadow crossing mountains
that you would turn your eye         away
so that I might see for myself         open        in your cold light
your mouth against my ear        the thunder’s prophecy
the cold rain        your secret places
your unspeakable names revealed
O haunted lover        promiscuous satellite
acknowledge me         initiate me
tell me         you are mine

*This poem originally appeared in The Blue Moon, Volume, 2, Issue 5, May 2004
**This poem originally appeared in The Moon, Volume 2, Issue 6, June 2004


Three More Poems from “The Offical Handbook for the Creation and Care of Clean-Eyed Machines” (2003)

October 24, 2008


Three Poems from “The Offical Handbook for the Creation and Care of Clean-Eyed Machines” (2003)

October 20, 2008


Fiji Mermaid in the Birdcage Theater

October 9, 2008


Three Poems about a Witch

October 9, 2008

Poem 1
That Woman

she opens her mouth
and the tranquil half-moon dissolves
on her tongue moonflowers bloom
in her mind’s garden her hair is long grass
drowning in a flood her words a chain of bubbles
pulled from between her lips coherence
unbraided by the rage of current

you must fill your bags with sand
build the dam don’t follow her
thought’s Celtic knot
bury the other half of the moon
poison the bloom beware the mud lying
under the river of her voice the trap
she will never be like you

Poem 2
Picking Flowers*

The woods are like this at night —
lost souls tangled in the trees,
shaking branches, trying to get loose.

For over forty years I have prowled
in this place, collecting
charmed blossoms and choleric berries
beneath the second-hand light
of my floating lamp, the moon.

My ungrateful husband never knew,
never once stirred as i crept
in and out of our hoary nest;
I would lay a broomstick beside him
and whisper:
“Tonight, sweet dreams
of a good wife beside you
and the riches of kings.”

I did that for a man
who seasoned his food with saltpeter
at a time when i was the fairest
in our village.

But this is what i am here for: purple-veined
henbane, and there blanched
thornapple, and succulent midnight blue —
and over there, the deadly nightshade.

These are the tender, terrible delicacies I gather
for myself; ingredients for the tingling
ointments I concoct
to hurl my spirit across the world
so that she may meet
with her sisters
while my arthritic frame sleeps
in a corner of the root cellar.

Look there! Monkshood,
a purple procession of cowls;
solemn flowers
I keep hoarded for my bitterest potion,
for my last escape
from reproachful priests.

But here, come back
to my hut with me, and I’ll show you how
to make the sky blacken and crack
from a pot of cold swirling water
and a handful of rotten sage.

Poem 3

no apples in this picture
no snakes but secrets slinking
up your spine circling nesting
in your head        the witch flexes her fingers
begins the cleaning        scouring        shaking
out damn security        out damn trust
make room for the serpent pregnant
and ready to burst


*Seattle Review, Spring/Summer 1989, Vol.XII, No.1


Bus Stop Bicycle

October 6, 2008