Sunflower Field


Every summer when I visit Marcus,

the last thing I do is walk in the field of sunflowers

south of town.

It reminds me of my comings and goings

and how life goes on.

The grasshoppers will be jumping,

and the dew will drench my sneakers.

I’ll track mud back to the rented car,

and that little bit of Iowa

will travel across the country

with me.




NaPoMo: April 3


Where are you going?

The wind beat its fist on my door today.

I remember how long ago it was always going somewhere.

You could sit on the south side of the farmhouse and hide from it.

But walk around the corner, and it took hold of your skin and shook it.

As if to remind me, as if I could ever forget,

that I was as rootless as the black soil.


A night of poetry and art

Last night was the 2nd annual Poetry and Art event at the Wickford Art Association. Months earlier poets were asked to write a poem that related to one of the 40 pieces of art and sculpture created by art association members. Those poems selected were printed and hung next to the artwork.

I had selected a piece of art of old benches because I liked the technique and the colors. It also reminded me of the work of Andrew Wyeth. The artist turned out to be one of the poets I knew, so it was a wonderful surprise. I loved going around the room and reading all the poems and relating them to the artwork. There were some wonderful pieces.

The night was beautiful — the building is near the Wickford Harbor. I’ve posted the poem and the painting here with other photos of the night. It’s a great idea for other art associations to try.

Weekly photo challenge: Extra



Extra sky. Extra color. Extra lights on the buildings in the Providence skyline. I don’t seem to notice the sky as much out here, unless I’m at the ocean. Last night’s sky was especially beautiful and it took a long time to reach its most saturated point. I was driving, and I worried that the glow would be gone by the time I got to the overlook on the East Bay bike path on Narragansett Bay. But it waited for me.

Racing the storm


Racing the Storm

                                              Jagged rage flicks overhead,
grumbles in primeval throat.
                                              Maddened cloaks of sea green
                                                         shroud tunnels of tall corn.
                                             Truck headlights skitter over
splintered cottonwood sentries.
You look back at rosy sunset,

then grind clutch,
spit gravel.

I wrote this short poem awhile ago, and it appeared in a lit magazine called Sliver of Stone, which is produced by students in the creative writing program at Florida International University in Miami, Florida.

At this time of year, I remember how quickly the clouds could turn that sickly shade of pea green in Iowa. How the wind would come up and then it got real still, and then how the hail would come down. And how my mother would stand outside and watch the sky as it bubbled and churned, especially if my father was still out working in the field.



Writing your heart out

That’s what you want to do.
Write till it hurts.
Write till it stops hurting.
Write till the whole world
Finally says, “Okay, we get it now.”

But there’s so much that can go wrong.
Beware writing your heart out.
They’d rather you eat your heart
Than wear it on your sleeve.
Beware. Then write.