For the one born blind…

Grace in Mud

They sing,
we sing,
all sinners sing
of grace
that’s amazing,
of grace
that makes
the blind see,
grace that
does what can’t
be done.

Never, they
say, It’s never
to anyone,
so don’t think,
don’t dream
it can happen
to you,
deservedly, en
utero (what
terrible thing
did your parents
do anyway
that you should
be born…you?)

Grace in this
spit and dirt,
grace in mud
that must be
washed away,
washed to
see what you’ve
never seen;
you’ve never seen,
ever; grace
in mud made
you see.

The reason I was born…


Thank you, blind luck,
the binary chance known as me,
the accidents we call history,
when Mom and Dad were where
and I became here instead of nowhere
in the geography called home
for now, but who knows next year
where this might all be I fear
like those who first tried surviving
in the someone else’s somewhere
of those indigenous Wampanoag
thankful with others but not sure why;
may I be at least as unaware
and thus grateful as I don’t care.

Too young, too soon, too sad…

Billy You’re Gone Too Soon

It never occurred to us
that you’d be so quickly gone,
so quickly stolen away, too soon,
too young, too sick to stay.

From that young Billy boy
all toothless grins, always bouncy,
never still, never quiet, until
asleep finally, ’til morning.

Mama’s baby boy, her
favorite, her only, her child
of tireless days, tireless plays,
tireless dreams of joy.

And now you’re gone,
gone too soon, gone to where
bouncy Billy’s go to be young,
to be true, to sleep until morning.


When Leukemia is Life

Can it be what is deserved
by a four-year-old child?
The cells distorted and
deteriorating inside, from
inside her bones still soft in

youth, but fragile from birth,
some signal isn’t working,
white cells that won’t mature,
too full and crowding life from
within; the word everyone
uses is ‘acute’ – a bad and
unwelcome thing with too
many synonyms to count,
all bad and unwelcome things
with a mysterious origin than
no one knows so there’s no
one to blame, except God;

she only has strength to
smile through dry, cracked lips,
her skin is taunt over thinning
features and only her cheeks
show her adolescence, while
adults are masked to protect
her from what’s always worse,
more tiring, more frightening;

it hardly seems right she is
unafraid and just needs to
rest, while everyone around
her is just terrified and can’t.

Naomi’s Easter…

pulmonaryPulmonary Fibrosis.

That’s all I have to say about that.

Well, and this…

That moment between – the
the suspense dividing life
and whatever else
there should be
the pneuma of suffocation.

Shuttered, concealing the
draws of hallowed oxygen
and medicated abet
passively delivered
wait im-patiently for air.

Dialogue is no longer
saving strength for a draw
and forcing life
stilly available
a fearful ovation.

They say Jesus died
on a Roman cross of shame
and that’s why
blood and water
from his side.

No one dies from much,
just a few things kill us
and so we
bleed and die
fluidly drown.

One wish she relates – her
prayer –
for misericordia’s blessing
and allay her one fear –
minimize this disrepair.

Answered aspiration in
she’s found breathless
and in peace
no longer in between
is Naomi’s salvation.

What’s original about sin…

Eve-shoving-the-apple-in-Adams-mouthBlame the serpent (that’s Eve’s ploy), then Adam blames Eve (though she was just a toy), and God who created it all; add this together and we have the fall.

The history of religion is the history of blame, the motive for religion is guilt, the means of religion is empathy, and the denunciation of it all is sympathy. That is, only those who care go to hell.


History of Sin

History a tale of fallen’s friends
giving account of what had to be,
fixed  by a sovereign who sees the end
saddled with desire to be free;

lost to be found, but only through Rome
intrude on our lust, our passion, home,
named ex opere – the lusty lie
sprinkle the babies lest they all die;

create the fright, threaten what’s scary
touch our babes, but you’re still necessary,
triumph assured, all wars justified
feelings condemned not capitalized.

Who erred that all are born this way
simply answered, we all come astray,
it’s sin, not hunger, that babies cry,
and not biology why we all die.


Love Story

We met at the beginning of the circle
when all was new just to each other,
soon we thought we were always we,
stories merged like one on another;

what it was, was easy enough to be
always something, everything undone,
damned by fruit of a forbidden tree
critiquing what once was begun;

tested, not tempted, fallacies, not lies
our Kant dared us from infants to grow
question by taste, deceived by our eyes
stop just taking, trusting, we can know;

no prudes, no rules, the circle begun,
exemplary yet derided for immemorial
blamed by Hippo for perfection undone
but not the cause, simply the tutorial;

we’d eat it again and again in love,
the defiance was arbitrary after all
as was the command – it was a shove
toward deconstruction and not a fall;

it’s quiet, our story, beyond this plot
we loved, with fear – that our glory,
wandering together for what we ought,
we are Eve and Adam – a love story.

Jesus is looking for me for some reason…

388089281f54b1fcdc489fd76080f8c3Ninety-Nine and One Hundred
There are one hundred things I wish to do
but ninety-nine I never will it seems; they’re
not dreams so much as wishes and urges,
conscious and clear, not fantasies at all;
they’re real, as real as life and air and my
beating heart, and they’re mine – all mine
because no one else could do what I wish
to do, or would want to it seems. Not all – just
some – would admit such things; frustrations
and hopeless hopes are what the ninety-nine
are to others and the one done – the one
done over and over again – becomes routine,
monotony the others call real, ordinary, life.

Jesus left the ninety-and-nine to search for
the one, in some twisted appeal to his
everyone is important, everyone matters,
everyone gets a trophy gospel of me,
myself and I that numbers hairs, dresses
flowers better than Solomon, and offers
funerals for every sparrow that succumbs,
while the boring ninety-and-nine never leave
home, never leave each other, never explore,
never risk, never have anything to regret,
never live; like the prodigal’s older brother
who wanted a fatted calf for – what, staying
home and never returning to life in his
father’s eyes?! There is no fatted calf for
never trying, never dying, never living again.

You’ll Soon Be Dead
Buying a scale won’t make you lose and weight,
like owning a treadmill won’t make you an eight;
and those fitness magazines sure aren’t evangelism
that will magically transform your sluggish metabolism;
of course, it’s all in your genetic predisposition
and eating because of an unhappiness mission;
and the drive of snacking out of life’s painful boredom
requires one to super-size every single portion;
so regardless of what your doctor always said,
it’s just the way you are and you’ll soon be dead.

Last meal and testament…

2-clicksupperWhat would you like for your last meal?

Be creative, and thoughtful, and enjoy the chance to change your mind.

Famous last meals are solitary choices. Some, it seems, use a last meal as a testament, a statement, a protest, or a final middle-finger to the world as they succumb to the ultimate judgment here.

So, what would you like for your least meal?

There’s a fascinating exhibit at the Mary and Leigh Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University in Evanston – “The Last Supper” by Julie Green is 600 Plates Illustrating Final Meals of U.S. Death Row Inmates ( This is a fitting complaint about how easily and ordinarily death row is used to ease our bloodthirst for revenge (or justice) – I’ll let you decide.

Early Last Meal

It was too good, I’m sorry to say
too good for an ordinary meal
in the middle of an ordinary week.
The meat was too tender and tasty,
the vegetables too crisp and right
and the wine too right and dry.
Many kings have lived and died
and not eaten this well, I thought
and I am and will never be one.
This could have, should have
been my last meal and testament;
I will never eat this well again.
I now live the life of the condemned
with time between meal and maker
to live on in satiated dissatisfaction.

Famous Last Meals

There are two kinds of last meals that one may enjoy;
the first last meal is of the judicially condemned
(but that doesn’t happen much in the days of
conscience and the humane treatment of homicidal
sorts – only mass murderers, terrorists and
southerners are afforded this privilege today).

The caring province has become an indulgent ritual;
the condemned’s last three, four, five or six requests
of fried chicken, shrimp or catfish (southerners),
fries or onion rings or deviled eggs (appropriate),
occasionally a pork chop and mashed potatoes,
pies, cakes, éclairs, ice cream of all variety,
and cherry Pepsi’s – three, four, five or six.

The single course final meals are always curious,
such as the strawberries – pints and pints (washed),
or gallons of mint chocolate chip ice cream;
the bottle of fine wine (obviously in Europe),
or the ingenious convict who ate himself obese
and sued claiming he was too fat to be electrocuted;
failing that he requested plenty and plenty of eggs.

Anger or irony are, of course, on the menu as well,
as is a request of a fistful of dirt (or a cup of yogurt),
a frozen pizza eaten uncooked (until electrocution);
the olive (with the pit still in it) for Iowa’s last to hang
to resemble his own Adam’s apple noose slung;
and the smart ass who asked for shit and denied it
asked for justice, equality, world peace (also denied).

Most murders have already changed the world
(and in return, the best world is without them),
but refusing his own, one asked that a pizza be given
to a homeless man (denied, but it was still done);
or the repentant fasting of a woman who prayed
and read (the Bible) and listened to oldies all night
(like there wouldn’t be enough of that in hell).

The more famous one is, the more infamous
the choice of final food, though for Socrates
hemlock was not his request but was had willingly,
as was Cleopatra’s figs with a side of deadly asp;
and Robert E. Lee has kept alive for weeks
after a stroke with beef broth and brandy –
which is preferable to the others’ finales.

In first class on the Titanic you enjoyed salmon
(before becoming food for the same) and rare lamb,
veggies of all sorts and sweets to match as the
band played, and wines with each and every course;
as the Chinese, Greeks and Romans insisted,
providing food for the journey of the afterlife,
while Aztecs fattened their human sacrifices annually.

These first last meals, though, most often involve
chickens (always plural) in batter and/or buckets,
though cheeseburgers are a fond and close second;
everything else is regional or, sadly, what their
Mama used to make when they were nourishing
and loving and caring for their baby and the day they
would grow up to kill someone’s else’s baby.

The babies that grew up to become famous for us
and eat the second kind of last meal – that of surprise;
diets of those unexpectedly returning to dust
soups, chowders or salads, for lean and fit lives
or yogurt, granola, even bacon and eggs –
the breakfasts of those who planned to have dinner
but they didn’t even make it to their lunch.

If the great wished to be memorable for more
than heroism or intelligence or power or magnetism
then they’d avoid the likes of tuna fish or dry toast,
chefs wouldn’t dine on peanut butter and bananas,
the King would have avoided cookies and ice cream
for his breakfast, but the Rebel without a cause
might still have had apple pie and milk.

Some second meals should really count as firsts
of the premeditated kind but gone terribly awry;
Hemingway had a steak, potato and red wine,
oh, and a twelve gauge for his dessert, so sad;
Jesus shared his Seder with eleven plus one
sopping wine with bread and insisted that all
do the same and never forget this nosh.

And that brings us back to the premeditation
of Arc’s holy communion, and a cup of cold water,
poisons and pills, ropes and rivers, dosages and damns;
damn if lead doesn’t kill more than suicide –
and depression bows before malnutrition and war;
light a last smoke readied for paradise city,
after a fine meal, and make ready.