Feels like poetry tonight . . .

A glass of wine to ease the way

A cup of red scented sweetly as bruised roses

Warming the flesh and humming along bones

Alive with memories of days long past.

The storm came and drenched the road,

Ragged clouds harried before by mighty wind gusts

emptying torrents of rain on the blanching grasses

and jewelled leaves still clinging to the trees.

There is a waiting about the air,

A pause in the atmosphere,

A stillness in the movement of time and tide

while the planet hurls itself through space.

The season changed, but the earth resists,

delaying the fall into barren branch and frozen earth

as a woman plucks her silver hairs

as a man fights the aches of age.

September Thoughts — a poem

Cold feet in thick socks

Cold nose and chill fingers

Mid-September coolness seeps

Despite sweaters and jackets and hats.

More leaves are gathering in uneven sweeps,

Yellow and orange and red scattered roadside fragments 

While the clouds lower grey brows close to the rooftops 

And the heavy dew silvers almost into frost.

And now, a poem: September Haze

September haze 

Warm and sweet with the scent of gentle rot

Thick air like soup blurring the moon

Pockets of yellow on shields of green

Heavy dewfall soaking the earth

Last breaths of summer slipping through the chill

A season on the fence, teetering uncertainly


Unwilling to go

Unable to stay.

A gory, gross poem about my housefly

The housefly disappears when I bring the swatter out.

I can hear it buzzing in its slow flight,

roaming the humid air of my home.

How does it know to evade?

Does it sense its imminent death on the psychic waves?

Can it see the shape in its multiple eyes?

Do flies tell stories about the swatter

from one generation to the next

passing down cautionary tales?

And why won’t the damned thing settle?

I feel the impatience of the hunter stalking the prey

Wish for the reflexes of a cat

and the eyesight of an eagle.

Stop and rest your wings, fat housefly,

so I can squash your shell into your brains!

No sticky ribbons for you to be trapped,

feebly wiggling your legs in a futile reach for freedom.

No empty glass to release you into the wild,

for in your stupidity you will bumble back inside.

It is only, for you, a great smashing swat,

and your body will pop out of living existence.

My apologies if you are the spirit of an ancestor,


I am disgusted when you land on my face as I sleep

I dislike the scratch of your legs on my calf

I hate that you crave my food without providing in kind

And I know that you carry germs on your hairy bits.

Come to me, round insect,

Come to me and accept your fate.

Waiting for the Perseids — a poem

With time to kill under the darkening sky,

I stoke a fire with cardboard and dried rosemary,

Listening to the crickets and frogs and loons,

and the distant rumbling of the night train.

The fuel catches and flames churn upward,

Flickering in broad leafy columns, never still.

Grey flakes wander lightly down through the evening air,

Harbingers of the long winter yet to come.

The chugging roar of my fire echoes the train,

air conditioners and rooftop fans nearby.

So bright, the flames, my yard is illuminated,

In the cool darkness, the heat is welcome on my legs.

When the rush dies down, the smoke is scented

sweetgrass and thyme rising and falling about me.

More stars speckle the midnight dome above

than I could ever hope to count in a lifetime.

And the Perseids come.

Am I imagining the streaks of light?

Brief lines of white?

Are my eyes, adjusting, playing tricks?

Or have I been welcomed by the universe?

I recognize satellites, and familiar patterns in stars,

as my head rests against the top of my chair.

And then — out of nothing — a bold lashing white

As a piece of a comet’s tail burns into our world.

Ode to a Storm

The wheel of the year has turned, 

and it has brought storms in its wake. 

Distant rumbles, unremarkable at first,

could be passing trucks or a load of timber.

Looming clouds block the summer light

with jagged edges and smooth front lines

as the front pushes itself overhead.

Infrequent growls, the great animal rises

its approach marked by gusts of wind.

Flashes of light announce each giant step,

booming echoes, crackling sound waves

shaking the house and frightening the dog.

And then the rain, cascading in sheets,

pounding in random rhythms on the roof. 

Close the windows to keep the room dry.

Open the windows to soak in the petrichor.

glad I came: a poem

Belly laughs until the tears are falling

Splashing in rolling frothy waves

Board games in the waning light

Floating in tubes along the glistening sunset waters

Lunch in the shade of elms and oaks, talking

Movies in pyjamas

Sharing space companionably

Dares and stories and memories…

Sleepovers are not only for children,

And vacations are not couples-only.

When two friends meet for days of R&R

Even Nature smiles.


Semi-drunken post-concert poetry; or, impressions of a small-town rock concert with a big-name Canadian band


Heat is a series of smoky walls sliding open

An invisible atmosphere from another planet come to rest with the music



My head and shoulders reverberate 

Ears deafened

The bag on my shoulder shuddering

It’s not my phone that’s ringing 

Is anyone else self-conscious here when they dance?

Is that a sobriety test?

Hipsters standing elbow to elbow with white-collar executives and average joes

Avoiding eye contact except among their party 

Or to slip past with full cups of alcohol in hand 

Some splash against my calves

When I get excited I flail my arms and hands

I hit the first drink my husband offers and splash him


Pull him deeper into the crowd

Who else is dancing?

He stands behind me when I choose a gap

My shepherd 

My protection 

I spy another gap

Closer to the stage

Understand the phrase “a sea of people”

Energy rises and binds us to the stage

Performers loving us back

Front man’s mic is his plaything

A rope

A paintbrush

His players driving the beat while he steers an imaginary wheel

I laugh as loud as I want

No one can hear my voice in the mass of sound

I sing even when I forget the words

I know the tune

I focus on the moment

But I want to freeze it 

Stop caring if anyone is watching

Just dance

Cranberry and vodka

Drink three is the loosening of bolts

My feet are glued to the floor no longer



Fever and all that comes with it: A Parent’s Poem

Heat under my palm where cool should be

Sleepy eyes ringed with circles over pale cheeks

Hoarse cough and hoarse voice 

Dry and baking little fingers clasping my own

She asks for water after her medicine.
Not her first time with fever, nor the last

But her colds are rare, often sickness undaunting —

She turned down bouncy castles today

Choosing couch, pillow, blanket, quiet

Not her typical personality.
I count my blessings always that she’s healthy

I watch her drift into sleep with flushed cheeks

I hope and pray it’s just the virus others have had

A temporary shift into discomfort

Try to keep her happy.
But knowing there is only so much

Life goes on and due dates tick closer

Guilt and apologies, letting go her hand

She’s old enough to understand

Not sure which part aches more.