Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Simon Howard 1960 ~ 2013

It is with deep regret that I have to report the recent death of our friend and poet, Simon Howard.
Simon was the first ever poet published in our series of eBooks and the first poet published in our limited chapbooks. A great supporter of the Red Ceilings, a fine poet and a gentleman. He will be greatly missed.

Simon's last book, Wrecked, can be found here at Oystercatcher Press

His Red Ceilings eBook, Numbers, is here at issuu
and the print edition here at Knives Forks & Spoons 

The first part of the plus que parfait collaboration written with Emily Howard and Mark Cobley, the title goes here, can be found here 

And his personal blog....walkingintheceiling

A line from Harry S. Truman ~ Mark Young

A line from Harry S. Truman

In the devastating after-
math of Fox News'
continued assault on the
labor movement, bumble-

bees seem to be dwindling
at an alarming rate. It's not
always about getting up
close & personal—& even

channeling the late great
Jamaican musician Bob
Marley cannot cure all
financial ills—but matters

of the mind & spirit are
wreaking havoc on people
in the Midwest. Trauma
accumulates in sensitive

tissues over time. My wife
removed several large cater-
pillars from our tomato plants.
The Senate is in an uproar.

Just how honest was Oliver Stone? ~ Mark Young

Just how honest was Oliver Stone?

Every time I'm out
on the street, ex-
ploring the effects of 
elemental vortices
by means of three
popsicle sticks, a
small piece of wire,
& a hot-glue gun

with a mathematically-
defined tapering
diameter within the
chamber, shots "un-
connected" to the
badger cull ring out.

A line from Yo Yo Ma ~ Mark Young

A line from Yo Yo Ma

The last two outings of the
U.S. Patent Office have
disappointed at the box office.
The first, based on three short

plays by Molière, was a pod-
cast of naturally carbonated
water: the second, a device
that looked like a tiny wash-

board, punched holes into
another dimension to make
the transmission of music
travel faster than light. The

new endeavor, which has an
optional external battery, uses
an antenna splitter to take
advantage of loopholes in both

European laws & the very root
of traditional American popular
music. Many people like that
tingling feeling on their tongue.

Mark Young's most recent books are the e-book Asemic Colon from The Red Ceilings Press, & The Codicils, a 600-page selection of poems written in the past four years, out from Otoliths.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Thursday, November 7, 2013

excuse my vandalism ~ lars palm

Heiligenschein : Petrarch Sonnets 160 - 180 ~ Peter Hughes

New limited edition chapbook available on the Red Ceilings

Heiligenschein : Petrarch Sonnets 160 - 180,  by Peter Hughes

[rcp cb24] A6 28pp 40 copies. £5.00 inc. p&p (UK)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Options ~ Kenyatta Jean-Paul Garcia

Surrender was option C
    and E was all of the above.

Tonight A, B, D were eliminated
    from consideration
    without first proving
        their falsity
within god’s paradigm grip
    as learned through
            to Orpheus
back to the dead
    of which dying
        was option D

And the mountainside
    dominated the switchbacks of A and B’s
                                                            steep faces.

Kenyatta's work has appeared in ditch, BlazeVOX, Caliban Online, The Mind[less] Muse and others.  They also post work at kjpgarcia.wordpress.com.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Endless / Nameless ~ Rachel Sills & Richard Barrett

The gingerbread silhouette of my father
Is absent today I’m perspiring
Or you could say shimmering over a coastline
In a row pegged-out, colour coded
Three weeks' worth of hearts
A Freudian couch with sponge cake perhaps?
An arrow, a narrowboat, arrowroot blot
A stair-lift stops, temperamentally
I decline to use the honesty box
But am generous for life-guards
On a good day, only on a good day
A magazine before dinner before, later, the paper
The evening smell of tobacco
'Papa?'  I hear; to which I answer 'yes, Nicole?'


Beneath the H bar shadow in the bathroom
The lie of the land becomes clear
Land's End here. Oh no that's Cornwall
White is perfection, turquoise calm
Enjoy a Toblerone, like the Prince on Wednesday
Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain
But keep fingers crossed the interview goes well
A wing chair can overwhelm a room
As the sea can. Green, wet and very deep
An unruffled surface is far more disturbing
For dream interpretation avoid Yahoo Answers
So what IS the significance of a cream tea?
On a worryingly under loaded passenger ferry
The message in the bottle reads "let's talk"


Oblivion. Nothing: side-by-side on a bookshelf
Above a bookshelf. Where I keep last year’s diary
Volumes I - III and VI - VIII
They are not a legal proof, dreams
They melt into dark praline shadows
It's your birthday tomorrow so "best wishes"
Or alternatively "bon voyage"
None of this matters of course (still I worry)
Note: avoid ledges, edges, suspension bridges
One room is not the house taken over
After this the conversation flags, imagining
(Easier to) the end of the world than the end of capitalism
And prefers his seascapes to be stormy
Meaning re time and motion: a different concept entirely

Rachel Sills lives in Manchester. She has a PhD on Frank O'Hara's poetry, and has had poems published in Stand Magazine.

Richard Barrett lives and works in Salford. He is the author of several collections of poetry and the editor of Department Press. He co-organises the reading series Peter Barlow's Cigarette.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Poem ~ Isabell Dahlberg

wide skirt
knocked off head
swamplike tattooed
tiny feet

let’s meet after
when all apricot beer has been
rally with pouting
watched by
laughing moons

hoards of nesting boys
in her hair
and silver blouse and socks
ticking with

bereavement says it will
read the papers again
until politicians
washing their mouths with
war mold

under wonderland
the shadow:
pale blue african roads
where redtopped butterflies
batter hands with eachother
then roaming off
to get to the public bath house
in time

not where I was
but after that
the ceiling here hung hurt
like the heavy body of
a newly slewn
fallow deer

shave that boldness off
bear in your
that not one
of these trees
has seen
the ocean

grandmothers make time
after death
make and take and
won’t talk about it
                                         unless fed with ripe prunes


swirls of pancake
in the grass
needle glitter
pop in for needless
speechacts with
and then:    dream

hearing the afternoon
sweet dollhumans
crowding the city
fat with

no pressure
in mouth the month after
swallowing the news
of disaster

making work
the essential goal
for any society
is honestly
– rubbing your knees
more shameful than

the bus will wait
he said
she said it will not
as the sky drove by
ancientlooking and
speed-ticket fast 

not pale but
in july
air whispers behind
your back

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Foetus ~ James McLaughlin

There are places where my mind
simply refuses to go.
A place of intimacy and correction:
a sullen unnurtured child
that stands beside me always.
A locked box.
A concrete sarcophagus.
A cist in the lens of completion.

It formed long ago - perhaps
in childhood - or in the unformed foetus -
in that egg the turned unwanted
in that sage saline liquid
that coil of blood and hope that
gasped a breathed nicotine

It holds me – still
always a little way off -
always a just at arms length -
always almost there.

Now it
Turns stoically.  
From closed doors -
from broken dreams.
from life itself.

Always seeking sanctuary -
walking through woods in summer
along river banks
through ancient tunnels to nowhere
always always alone.

poems ~ Rob Burton


breath a fabric woven in three strands
will let its spool pattern out the ways
hours slipping return in its flux; the life which
flickers in a flame’s passing also carries its heat
into the dark and burns its flare a deep
sea white. thawing the primal wo/man untwists
its mercury lip and pulled from the deep
returns new flesh warmed in the flesh to come.
as long as there is flesh intention accretes in
colour; layer by layer laid in flakes of coral
and dispute it reaches after warmth. this spring
again will not be denied and breath will push
on through the years stretching its limbs out
in your limbs; the air and any future yours

we lie out under open skies;
between sunset and rise of sun there is probably
cold enough to freeze water from its vapour
no intervening phase. I try to start a fire
carving it to a lens and focussing
a single beam to paper thin wood,
but can’t begin and who
can start them anyway. Image holds
the surface of the lake for a moment where
we dip hands. The traveller felt pressed
by derision there once, at the hill top
and grinning reached a hand to thawed earth
cracks widened to swallow the journey as fatuous;
her temp a constant 0 degrees

in morning I think of my optimism
(disguised) as its own priest
persuading to gatherings, as
smoke in the room and every
particle lit in its movements
turning the skin’s crosshatch
close up

it applies makeup the face wide at the
cheekbones a cadmus son  in drag
its substance drawn apart
by the eager hands of daughters

sometimes it is shaped, as
encounters taking petals, in hotel
corridors, those broad petals
held by dolls

Greet the dog, a good one
Telling condition as “well”
You learn short or long
That’s all there is
Playing its vast weight up on
Your shoulders there
Muzzle pressed against the back
Of the neck a single frame stop
Seeing you arch back into it


my girl painted Barbie pearl necklaces
drawn bigger than eyes strained match
wood open
held the wig on blonde like the mouth
plumped trying young and innocent
mouth a little too hard for full and
on fate more than I knew gets there
looking to walk onto villa party lists
stars drawn over breasts fall showers, counterpoint
flesh defies gravity, disengaged as vacant stared
intent and
understrut marginal the elder hand support,
redundant skin the towel to dry
officials after bathing, weathered past it, hands
cracked and aching

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Impossible I ~ David Eingorn

Delighted to announce a new title on the Red Ceilings Press.
Impossible I by David Eingorn - available as a free ebook from the Red Ceilings Press website where you can also see all our ebook titles and our limited edition chapbooks in print.


Mono-oxide ~ P. A. Levy

i was chemical you was oxygen
that’s how it all began
and i collected
the elements of every kiss
you’d left on my lips
keepsakes trapped in petri dishes

over time we became
a breathless reaction
long shadows holding hands
on the edge of sound
un-hale me you said
leaving me blue
hypoxic over the rust of ex you

Born East London but now residing amongst the hedge mumblers of rural Suffolk, P.A.Levy has been published in many magazines, both on line and in print, from ‘A cappella Zoo’ to ‘Zygote In My Coffee’ and many stations in-between.  He is also a founding member of the Clueless Collective and can be found loitering on page corners and wearing hoodies at www.cluelesscollective.co.uk

Monday, August 5, 2013

Songs My Mother Taught Me ~ Simon Howard

The street leads to the shout at the start of a ghost
and bitter juice of boy inside the body. 
Giles Goodland, 'Streetview' from The Dumb Messengers

Beware bright ribbons offered on a stormy day
slow clouds rumble
over rapid buildings / temporary dwelling

The child who gathers wind worn pebbles
against catastrophe
the fuzz in their uniforms grim

Ace; inside out, in my lovers arms
on a quiet day of wispy clouds
& burning automobiles

Do you remember
the man who fetched the rent, children playing on a wilderness-ed
bomb shelter / first amnesia, last narratologist

One year the fair came to visit
until I missed the target
& lost out on the toy

And, little town, thy streets for evermore
Will silent be; and not a soul to tell
Why thou art desolate, can e'er return. Therefore

They drove all night & are driving still
you were wearing the latest slacks for ladies
some kids played one game of pinball

another until
we were no longer there. 

Simon Howard : walkingintheceiling

Friday, July 19, 2013

September 19 1929 ~ Simon Howard

Poem for my Mother

The strangers exchange smiles
now I can’t stop smiling

Dark bees swim inside
a radiant Absolute

A white perfumed bush
lifts into the sky below my feet

There are advertisements forgotten
on a patch of forgetful ground

Describe your experiences of semi-invisible architecture
try to stop crying

We were waiting for a train
when a huge tempest broke over the sea, I

attributed your exemplary calm
to my eating an ice cream

Simon Howard : walkingintheceiling


Friday, July 12, 2013

The Grimace ~ David Berridge

Delighted to announce a new limited edition chapbook by David Berridge.
The Grimace - available as a limited edition from the Red Ceilings Press website where you can also see all our titles in print and our free ebooks.


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Those Good Tomatoes ~ Donal Mahoney

 Chicago, South Side

Late July and I am waiting
for those good tomatoes
brought to the city from farms
on trucks with a swinging scale,
brought to the city
and into the alleys
by Greeks and sons
in late July
and early August,
tomatoes so red they reign
on the sills of my mind all winter
too perfect to eat.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Love Poem ~ Simon Howard

The information I receive
accurate to a sequel  
is there difference
between internal language

Unseen architecture
shall appear unseen
take delight in nothing
nor dye your hair candyfloss

Simon Howard : walkingintheceiling

Friday, June 21, 2013

The Chomedy ~ Ollie Evans

New free ebook...

The Chomedy by Ollie Evans
Ollie Evans
is a performer and poet based in London. Has had poetry published by Department Press (Stutter Studies, 2011), Red Ceilings Press (Dash Booked a Builder, 2012 and The Chomedy, 2013), Stoma Press (High Digger’s From the Ear-far-out-wrung of these Thinkings, 2013), Veer (Kettles, 2013), and his poetry has also appeared in Depart, International Poultry Review, Vile Products and Materials.

He occasionally performs as a noise-poet, makes puppet shows and is currently undertaking a Phd on the ‘Performance of Finnegans Wake’ at Birkbeck College.

To see this and our full catalogue of free ebooks and limited edition print chapbooks visit The Red Ceilings Press

Plated Echo ~ Andrew Taylor

Paris never
sounded so good

Carry of cable

a capture

Dust dampened
movement restricts

Weather forces


like simple mortar
we are prone

to crumble

Only Shallow ~ Andrew Taylor

Take shade of trees
     arc of cool

spread from the pack

regulate breath
     wait for sides
to fill

road initials painted

benefit from shade

Aware of chat behind
      comfortable pace
like feet on piano pedals

De Magenta ~ Andrew Taylor

Transcontinental journeys before the funeral
handwritten messages on the newspaper’s front page

plastic bag in the fridge contains the gift of beer selection

walk the boulevards punctured by coffee and cognac
it is clear that we are English

traditional and handcrafted roasted beans
it is evident by the taste

the apex of the station’s glazed roof reveals
redundant architecture

it really was the time for headwear
the breeze from the river was icy

Andrew Taylor lives in Liverpool and his debut full collection, after several pamphlets, Radio Mast Horizon was published in early 2013 by Shearsman.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Top Ten Tyres ~ Gareth Twose

Delighted to announce the debut chapbook from Gareth Twose. 

Top Ten Tyres - available as a limited edition from the Red Ceilings Press website where you can also see all our titles in print and our free ebooks.


Thursday, April 25, 2013

The Turnip's Return ~ Paul Sutton

New free eBook out today.

The Turnip's Return by Paul Sutton

To see our full catalogue of free eBooks and limited edition chapbooks visit the Red Ceilings Press website

Paul Suttonwas born in London, in 1964. He graduated from Jesus College, Oxford, worked in industry until 2004, then left to travel; he now teaches English in a secondary school. His work has been widely published in UK and US journals.

The collection Broadsheet Asphyxia (Original Plus, 2003) explores instability, corruption and repulsion, using twisted narrative voices.

His pamphlet The Chronicles of Dave Turnip (Original Plus, 2009) conflates poetic and other fragmentation, using parodied self-mythologizing of crime. This sequence concludes the 2010 collection Brains Scream at Night (from US press, BlazeVox).

His most recent British collection is Cabin Fever (The Knives Forks and Spoons Press, 2012).

Two longer sequences of polemical work are available in a Salt anthology of poetry manifestos, Troubles Swapped for Something Fresh (2009). A set of narrative poems feature in Rupert Loydell’s 2011 anthology Smartarse (The Knives, Forks and Spoons Press). A collaborative filmic sequence Voiceover is also available from The Knives, Forks and Spoons Press (2011).

Previous publications from The Red Ceilings Press are the hit e-book Indigo Not Violet and the chapbook Gemstones, both published in 2011.

Friday, April 19, 2013

At-Will Employment ~ Kristen McHenry

Each employee’s employment is terminable at the will of the employee or the company at any time, with or without cause and with or without notice.

Yet let us begin where we know to begin—that in death you will not haunt those you loved, but where you resided in your labor, where you gave the whole of yourselves for oranges and flour, where each pair of indentured hands coveted the chores of their opposite: those that flew envied those that strained and plodded, hands that healed, those that maimed. You will return to duty, to vocation, to your gig, you will twitch in synchronicity with each familiar motion. You’ll ache for not so much for love but for occupation, to feel your usefulness again, to be taken for indelible. Your time will go unchronicled. You’ll leaf through paper as gone stiff as old wings, searching for the traceable.

Or upon a living loss, you will find yourself standing in a white pond, nothing graspable. You’ll drink comfortless tea in a plastic booth, haunted by this same florescence, the relentless light of loss. Bathe your idle hands in it and dream of clean swathes on the wound, a thing done and done again, a clock, a shuffle, a cough, a fix. Your hands, that ache with want of it.

Team Building Exercises ~ Kristen McHenry


•    The Great Egg Drop

For creating a sense of yolk and afterbirth. For bonding over fragility. To remind them of soft falls and metaphors in pink. A protective instinct, all attention focused on the mystery of one tiny incubator, hastily constructed. To unite them in the thrill of the death-leap, a moment really happening, impact and ritual survey of carnage. They will say we did our best with what little we were given. They will mourn their failed experiment, but only theoretically, theatrically. That night they will dream of floating in polystyrene, they will remember they were once protected. They will awaken, and rise to dress in the dark.

•    Balloon Activities 

Promotes gentleness in dealings, also reaching slowly so as to not stir the air. They will learn expansion in increments of breath, they will stretch their ribs and prod and smile. There will be powder blue and yellow, and the fervid among them will lose inhibitions and dab at their eyes, remembering The Red Balloon. It will seem there should be birthday cake and they will laugh at this. It will end with each of one trailing a balloon tied to their wrist. Even the grimmest will for become for a moment lax and knowable again.

•    Picture Perfect

The pictures are randomly ordered and handed out. The group tries to create a unified story from the set of sequential pictures. No one will agree on the final tale and for a duration their world will become exhaustingly absurd, so that when they view out the window a balloon flattened on a tree branch, a dead egg stretched on the walkway, it will seem normal, just the way of things. Still they will try; keep up chatter, focus, earnest explanations. Still they will rearrange the pictographs, in the re-ordering, another mystery, and the effective use of the therapy tool, "projection". 

Kristen McHenry is a resident of Seattle, Washington and is a poet by night, and supervisor of volunteers for an urban hospital by day. Among other publications, her work has been seen in Bare Root Review, Numinous, Tiferet, Sybil's Garage, Big Pulp, and the anthology, “Many Trails to the Summit” published by Rose Alley Press. She was a top five finalist in the 2009 national poetry competition “Project Verse”. Her chapbook “The Goatfish Alphabet” was runner-up in qarrtsiluni's 2009 chapbook contest, and was published by Naissance Press in 2010. Her second chapbook, “Triplicity: Poems in Threes” was published by Indigo Ink Press is 2011.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Filming ‘Blood Shot Silk’ – Deleted Scenes ~ Christopher Barnes

Deleted Scene (43)

Wardrobe!  Languishingly fingered props.
Expand Camera 3…whining door,
Tar-black gills on overset mushroom,
Frills on Roma Graves unfallen shoulders.
A brushworked skull
Deranges the smalt-and-flock wall.
The self-contradiction of surviving Cupid’s sting
Is woven explicitly
On a bandaged music-box marionette.

Deleted Scene (45)

A hearing-aid to the subway track…
Blood lunges down a crag.
Cut to…finishing-touch moon…Ali Wrey
Cur-trailed in torchlight.

A grand piano collapses
Jostling silver birch stairs.  Wide-eyed mob’s wheeler
Tremors a stick, slobbers.  Fade out.
Noose-slip into haycart reawakens night.

I verify some foredoomed distortion
And frisk another cigarette.

Deleted Scene (47)

In cobwebbed tapestry
A dingy-eyed shadow.
Bevan squeezes for pulse –
Manola’s neck.  Snap dilation
Of scarlet-spittle mouth.
Camera 2 – possessed by a blue-black scarf
Shackling her wrist.  Mortuary lace
From outpouring dress
On polished marble fireplace.

Spirit-raising menace
Insidious in octaves…
Submerged nudges
Images can’t deliver.


Christopher Barnes’ first collection LOVEBITES is published by Chanticleer.  Each year he reads at Poetry Scotland’s Callender Poetry Weekend.  He also writes art criticism which has been published in Peel and Combustus magazines.

Friday, April 12, 2013

The Pocket Reference Library ~ Glenn R. Frantz

New free eBook out.

The Pocket Reference Library by Glenn R. Frantz

To see our full catalogue of free eBooks and limited edition chapbooks visit the Red Ceilings Press website

Glenn R. Frantz
is a native of southeastern Pennsylvania. His poems have appeared in publications such as Great Works, Stride, Shadowtrain, kill author, Blackbox Manifold, BlazeVOX, and Otoliths. An index to his poetry and music is available at grfrantz.atspace.co.uk.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

cut out ~ Andrew Spragg

New free eBook out.

cut out by Andrew Spragg

To see our full catalogue of free eBooks and limited edition chapbooks visit the Red Ceilings Press website
Andrew Spragg
is a poet, performer and critic. He was born in London in 1984 and lives there currently. To Blart & Kid is due to be published by Like This Press in early 2013. He has had work appear in Hi Zero, Half Circle and on The Literateur. His writing was also included in Dear World & Everyone In It: New Poetry in the UK (Bloodaxe, 2013). He edits Infinite Editions, a blog that publishes free poetry postcards for download and distribution.

Publications include
The Fleetingest (Red Ceilings Press, 2011), Notes for Fatty Cakes (Anything Anymore Anywhere, 2011) and cut out (Dept Press 2012/ e-Publication by Red Ceiling Press 2013).

Vulcan's Lamp ~ Virginie Colline

brain viced
he spills tequila on the floor
in the forge of Volcano

Virginie Colline lives and writes in Paris. Her poems have appeared in The Scrambler, Notes from the Gean, Prune Juice, Frostwriting, Jack Move Magazine, Prick of the Spindle, Mouse Tales Press, StepAway Magazine, BRICKrhetoric, Seltzer, Mad Swirl, Overpass Books, Dagda Publishing, The Four Quarters Magazine and Yes, Poetry, among others.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

variant lines and other poems ~ wayne clements

New limited edition print chapbook available from the Red Ceilings Press website

Wayne Clements
writer and artist, studied fine art at Chelsea College of Art and Design, where he researched machine methods of generating text. His artwork has been widely exhibited internationally. First published by Bob Cobbing’s Writers Forum Press in the 1990s, seven books of poetry and visual work have followed. Recent publications are: Clerical Work (2010, Veer), Western Philosophy (2011, Knives Forks and Spoons), and Archeus (2012, Depart)

48pp - 30 copies
UK £4.50 (inc p&p)

Europe £5.50 (inc p&p)Rest of World £6.50 (inc p&p)

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


We are now open for submissions again. Yep, we did all the work on the house (except decorate) so we can concentrate on the far nicer energy of publishing great poetry. So if you have something for the blog or the Press then don't be shy!

If you have submitted work over the past few months then feel free to send it in again - if you haven't had it published elsewhere!



Monday, January 14, 2013

Bobby Parker

Very interesting review and interview with Red Ceilings poet Bobby Parker, who discusses his RCP chapbook Building Murder with a Smile on the Quietus blog.

Soft Rush ~ Peter Hughes

New limited edition chapbook out now..

Soft Rush by Peter Hughes

To see this and our complete catalogue of free eBooks and Chapbooks visit the Red Ceilings Press website

Early Rehearsal ~ Beth Levin

Early Rehearsal


Get up in the dark
feel for my pants and shoes
coffee offers false hope
the eyes not responding
Wet Paint
voices travel the cold tiles
Stand the whole way
feel for my music
reading "Esme" miss my stop


I never know just how long
to keep the egg boiling
before it's a goner
and I opt for toast with butter

Some are organic these days
a lovely brown with speckles
I imagine the chickens
are left to roam free
having a party around four
and the good sense to go inside
before it gets dark

Waiting for the egg to boil I muse on it
half dressed and with one sock still to be found
there is the striped creature
peeking out from beneath a pile of washcloths
completely out of its realm

We walk single file to the school yard
tallest at the rear
so much order before the chaos of recess
At the beach you bury my legs in the sand
swim too far out

We are so young untutored
I wear a skimpy top
unaware graceful

Now I listen to jets and imagine bombs
Nam erased you
and I'm in layers too heavy for summer


Awake fresh
grudges shopworn hangovers shed
dress in a jiffy
barely a mirrored look
walk out in the wet air
steel gates lifting
vegetables newspapers coffee
my breath fast and cold
the morning reveals the perfect plan


You see I live on a hill
with a canary and a potted violet
My lover comes and goes
when he is hungry or in
the mood to talk
his eyes moist from
cabbage soup
a day on the stove

Schubert on the Bechstein
pears on the blond table
love songs under my fingers
my fingers like fans
only wanting a tender voice to
wander the melodies

But my furniture is oaken
pears go uneaten
Schubert's on the shelf
my borscht comes from a can
the life I should live
follows me like the night winds
of the Erlking


I live alone
Lulu walks on the piano
sprick-spack, sprick-sprack
One blue eye one green

My dreams have fled
yet I'm content
to laugh at myself
knowing the secrets truth kept
from desire

Frying two eggs in the iron skillet
butter stings the surface
bubbles dance
eggs combust with butter
balloon out here and there
before setting

At night wrapped in a patterned shawl
I rummage old letters with a Florentine eye
My lovers sweet demanding
I spy a nuthatch
Woo-ee-ah, Woo-ee-ah
all the day long

Death does not trouble
I hope he takes me
as I sit at the window
staring at wild thyme

Time is beauty
An instant
a breath


This morning she walked out into the freezing day
her long brown hair under a Woolrich cap
S. lugging her kit
Inside a koala clutching its baby
a few plants not all survivors
Elgar on the radio soup on the stove
I could sleep now and dream of the girl
I could tell you the sweetest stories
I could think in puzzles
or follow a clear thought to its conclusion
I could weep or look at you bemused
I could sit in a chair and not move
and listen for footsteps


 there is something about the way
 sunlight hits an ivy plant
 there is something about the way sunlight
 hits an ivy plant on the oak table by the window
 there is something about the way sunlight
hits an ivy plant on the oak table by the window
 on a late summer's afternoon
 there is something about the way sunlight
 hits an ivy plant on the oak table by the window
on a late summer's afternoon before the rain
 and the cool darkness sets in


A crinkled skirt of blue
a print of old patterns
I lift it to wash my feet
under the hose
scrape against the screen door
running back and forth
the air soft again pulling me
could you see through
the filmy blues
to my skin
alive in the bare breeze


At home I miss home
the stories begun unfinished
aromas penetrating silent rooms

On the street I miss the street
the travel never commenced
my bags packed unpacked
the music learned forgotten

In winter I miss winter
snows of another time
the crooked hill where I sledded
in spring the thick mud that ate my shoes

In this hour I miss this hour
the bark of the tree that never scraped at my ankles
the appointment never kept
the coffee cup with a pink stain where we never sat