winds whip, waters rise
marsh animals converge on the bridge
like Noah's ark

and we are left to wonder
did they all get along
in this moment of terror?



old white refrigerator
orange rust splotching in
from the corners and edges
not wedged between cabinets but cradled
in the old weathered branches
of a large tree
standing lonely in a marsh beside the road

and 3,000 once dwelled here
but if the winds weren't enough
that gave their homes for trees to hug
the oil spill cost them their daily bread
and 400 now remain
to hold a semblance of a town
where abandoned foundations outnumber houses


nature's hungry centrifuge

shaggy palm trees arranged around a square
a slab of concrete swept almost clean
but for three bent pipes left clinging desperately
and everywhere, scattered
abandoned foundations of once-houses
survived by gnarly wind-swept trees
reaching for--something
(those who left?)
bent like old men
--longing for the boy lost somewhere inside
buried by time--
dreams, lives, the everyday mundane
thrown into nature's hungry centrifuge
obliterated in an instant



palm trees and
shotgun houses like neat little boxes
but peeling

trailers on stilts of cement and
great swooping branches of ancient oaks
dripping with grey spanish moss

marsh gives way to
oil rigs, shrimp boats,
gulls laughing and floating

like kites in the wind...



deep inside your throat
doubled over
for lack of air
violently shaking
and finally a gasp enters
laughter bursts forth
until a sigh
a chuckle
and silence

Note: I might be without a computer for the next week, so either I'll post 8 poems at once or pick my favorite when I get back.


fairy dance

bud peeking from tip of branch
almost spring
but a cold laced flake perches
and melts
another follows and soon
the world looks like a fairy dance
a young bud wonders at the excitement of it all
and waits
just a little longer
for spring


crow in crystal branches

fog kisses gently the earth
weary of its own weight
curtains the still morning
revealing winter's true beauty

dark lines peer through crystal branches
--mist solidified--
above, a crow caws to its mate
an echo response


Ash Wednesday

white falls like ash
to cloak the ground
when pictured as ice and slush
but really just another
billion kisses from heaven
a whisper
a reminder
that God draws near
and Jesus comes
to fall like ash
and heal a cold hard world


billions of flakes caress the ground
unique as individual humans
clusters of rain too cold to fall
so they drift
occasionally whisking sideways
or briefly spiraling upwards
to defy gravity
purely for the joy of it

and a girl deemed too old 
for awe and magic
familiar with trudging through cold
stares out the window


surprise snow

No one saw it coming, not even Phys. Plant, who failed to put ice melt in front of the student apartments.  Perhaps the snow mocks us for putting hope in an early spring, even as it turns to slush upon touching the too-warm walkway.

a honk
and eyes implore the clouds
for a rambling V
but settle on a lone goose

and chin drops towards earth
where boots slosh through slush
of snow fallen on too-warm ground
and puddles form


AD Building

How many
         hands caressed this banister before me
         drops of sweat from sun glaring through towering glass
         feet thundering down blue textured stairs
clambering for freedom after long boring class?


Sunday afternoon walk

My fiance and I went for a walk after church today, and laughed at the antics of some ducks who really just wanted a bite to eat.

Mallards in a shallow stream
churning paddle feet
burst of murky cloud erupts
iridescent green head dips,
pulling feathered tail towards the sky,
bill scoops and reemerges
dull brown collected on smooth orange,
churning paddle feet


therapy horse

I visited a therapeutic horseback riding stable today, and this is what resulted.

large, fuzzy, plodding
guided by a child
yet protecting

stands still as child shifts
unblinking to find body lying across
or sitting backwards in the saddle

plods on
velvet muzzle held low
gently placing hooves

guided by a child
no--holding precious bundle
teaching through obedience


home (an almost poem)

I was born and raised south of the Mason-Dixon line, but far enough north that I didn't realize until I went away to college that it was, indeed, the South.  It never occurred to me why I saw so many confederate flags or why people in my town talked funny--some more than others.  For some reason, in history class, both the North and South were "them" and "they," though I identified more with the Yankees 'cause they were the good guys in the Civil War.  Sort of.  I never paid much attention in history class.

But once I made that realization I clung to it, holding tight to my sense of place and where I come from even as I went Away north to college.  Each time someone discovered yet another word I say different--five, nine, tour, theater--I pretended to be amused and slightly annoyed, while inside I filed away another piece of home.  They say you can take the girl out of the country, but you can't take the country out of the girl.  Well, it's true.

I come from a partly wooded hill up a long driveway set back on a dirt road, cradled by some of the oldest mountains in the country.  And even as I travel to different states, different continents, I discover just how much that little speck of earth shaped me.  It held me, and now I carry it inside everywhere I go.  As I look to the empty future of countless possibilities I know that there is one place I can always return to and know that I'm home.


cold season

I'm sick.
Nearly skipped a two-hour lecture,
Wished I had.

after rain
verdant green
against dark chocolate crust
silver light through the clouds
pours yellow on the earth


Happy Valentine's Day...

I apologize for this depressing poem on Valentine's day, but I woke up in a not-so-great mood. And I need to work on this whole lack-of-titles thing.

The day improved immensely when I came back from class to discover my fiance had spelled out "I <3 U" on my bed with mini 3 Musketeers and a box of mini Reese's cups.

crept in during the night
unnoticed, unwelcomed
engulfing, stifling chill



shivering on the branches,
then still
sun shining through
their papery skeleton


brother phoenix

For some of you, this poem will have great meaning.  Others may simply be confused.  I believe in allowing the reader to take from a poem what they get from it, for it has already served its writer's purpose in being written.  And so I present it to you without explanation.

brother phoenix
we have a bottle of Lorenzo's Oil
in the kitchen cabinet above the stove
tucked in a corner behind the pasta sauce and olive oil
I don't know why it's there
and not in the medicine cabinet beside the fridge
with all of the herbal supplements and ibuprofen
but anything could have happened
in the 18 years since its last use
yes, even a life unfolding


growing words

I have decided to write a poem a day.  Call it a belated new year's resolution if you like, but this is what I'm doing.  Hopefully it will strengthen my writing both for creativity's sake and my budding journalism skills, but if nothing else the creative juices will be flowing.

The purpose of this blog is to share with you, dear reader-guinea pigs, my raw unedited verses and to hopefully get some feedback.  Tell me what you like, share gently what made you cry in agony.  

And without further ado, the first poem.

growing words
as I stare at this blank page
--snow blanket--
and see that which lies beneath
awaiting my pencil to coerce it
through the cold nothingness
grass springing up
when we have lost all hope
the world will ever green again