Hesitant Beginnings

I've not done NaPoWriMo before. Last year I dabbled, a poem here and there - but this year it feels necessary ... My father died in 1993, when I was 17, and I didn't have the tools or the capacity to really grieve his death. There is complexity in that relationship, years of abandonment and... Continue Reading →

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slowly twisting history I play measuring compassion and fear by the moment I move in pilgrimage toward freedom a spectacle of failing fathers lining the street as I pass heavy and plodding and never-ending wondrous, the legends of men who have stayed I marvel at the ease with which legendary men are made I ask... Continue Reading →


Look around This is where the adventure happens where I gather the ragged and beautiful pieces of myself and they fit and are assembled all separate and one whole individually epic collectively the silence here is unafraid of a cry ready for awkward and painful and cruel poised for the blow that is change while... Continue Reading →


in the circle I tell him the story the long drive to West Virginia the childhood home of carnival glass how they circled the grave these relations in thin suits and Sunday hats as I approached the crowd parted silence then the whisper began 'Doug's daughter' a rolling message 'that's Doug's daughter' harmonious in their... Continue Reading →


a very small me rides a very pink bike banana seated and plastic basketed Easter candy loot in her periphery she smiles sunshine on her face warmth and safety and freedom and spring and hope and delight and Reese's eggs My littlest Heather and there are so many more Heather who sat alone during the... Continue Reading →


  'whatever is cheapest' menu of services folded (an actual menu) rustling silence sharp suited salesman looks for disagreement searching faces that don't move watching his commission trickle away under my unwavering proclamation no one intervenes sixteen ordering my father's funeral no one speaks for me or with me my dad's belongings lighter cigarettes wallet... Continue Reading →


then he was dead alone face down blood pooling under his skin "acute and chronic alcoholism" thirty-nine I buy a pizza boyfriend asks 'are you ok?' I ask 'pepperoni and sausage?' still and empty a dull void monstrously inappropriate beautifully contained lifting the lid on that night I feel the heat such pressure produces I... Continue Reading →


a sudden reprieve wellness and shiny possibility a new start sober and healing in some small way released from the VA hospital blackbird flies he zooms to me old trans am Steve Miller cassette birthday wishes sweet sixteen case of beer driving under the influence driving without a license assaulting an officer jail then ten... Continue Reading →


gone rogue ill swollen yellowed dying disappeared abandoned dirty hospitals in strange towns letters trickling from the tap a keg of your need your want fingerprinted the dirty hands of bureaucracy blue and white plastic rosaries paint by number ducks red sobriety tokens again again again the 24 hour chip dozens of them 'it will... Continue Reading →


what does it mean to walk through a memory? is it destroyed somehow? modified? changed in the remembering? fresh footprints casting ripples of 'different' and then the memory is the memory of the remembering? and if I do this a million times if I walk these paths until my legs ache their surrender and my... Continue Reading →

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