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Author: DOBYNS, STEPHEN
Matches Found: 487


Dobyns, Stephen    Poet's Biography
487 poems available by this author


A PLACE IN MAINE    Poem Text    
First Line: Shoebox upon shoebox - the elderly dawdle


A SEPARATE TIME    Poem Text    
First Line: In the years since I saw you on sunday


ABSENCE       
First Line: If these lines that I
Last Line: With the faces of strangers


ADAM    Poem Text    
First Line: It was something like a hole in the air
Last Line: Wouldn't it be a weapon against all to come
Subject(s): Bodies


ADAM       
First Line: It was something like a hole in the air
Subject(s): Bodies


ADRIFT IN THE LEAFY TRANQUILITY       
First Line: After a dragon has been seen in the neighborhood
Last Line: He would meet his fate boldly and keep his mouth shut


AFTER THE WAR WITH THE ESKIMOS       
First Line: Having forced the peace, the eskimos
Last Line: Our cousins half removed


ALLEGORICAL MATTERS       
First Line: Let's say you are a man (some of you are)
Last Line: Next time he wouldn't let it escape so easily


ALLIGATOR DARK    Poem Text    
First Line: Stiff as a fireman's spray, hisn urine smacks


ALLIGATOR DARK       
First Line: Stiff as a fireman's spray, his urine smacks
Last Line: Down to the alligator dark beneath the streets


ALTHOUGH IN THE THICK OF A JOURNEY       
Last Line: Churns and plunges and goes no place


ANCIENT TEACHING       
First Line: As he makes his steady way across the planet
Last Line: He has tenderly surveyed her darkest corner


ANGER       
First Line: I am the simplest of disguises.
Last Line: Sulphur: strike him anywhere


APHORISMS       
First Line: One was born with an intonation and went searching for a %language
Last Line: By choosing praise over achievement, he made certain his %fame would end with his death


ARRESTED SATURDAY NIGHT    Poem Text    
First Line: This is how it happened: peg and rob had invited


ART ET AL       
First Line: Four men shoot craps in an alley, crouched
Last Line: Can art endure much longer? The cop thinks not


ARTISTIC MATTERS       
First Line: The little killer must have his own room
Last Line: You see? He has just written you this poem


AT THE OCEAN HE STUDIED THE WAVES       
Last Line: Spaces between knowledge and unknowing


AT THE OCEAN HE STUDIES THE WAVES    Poem Text    
First Line: At the ocean he studied the waves – how they built and broke
Last Line: That filled the spaces between knowledge and unknowing
Subject(s): Waves


AT TIMES HE TRIED TO LOCATE THE MOMENT OF CHANGE       
Last Line: Gate. By the time he was settled in his seat, his question would be %forgotten


AT TIMES IT WAS IN FRENCH OR PAGES WERE MISSING       
Last Line: While he cursed himself and whipped himself after his ever- %plunging ambition


BACH PARTIA OR ONE OF THE GOLDBERG VARIATIONS       
Last Line: Being outside of himself can he ever be within himself


BAD LUCK FENCE       
First Line: Three jerks crack jokes on tv
Last Line: And the fat boy croons to his chocolate, %oh, black flower, black flower %come put me in your power


BEAUTY       
First Line: The father gets a bullet in the eye, killing him
Last Line: As if that's what it means to govern your life by it


BEING HAPPY       
First Line: A dog on a street corner sits on a soapbox
Last Line: His paw. Afterward, they tip the busboy five bucks


BELLY       
First Line: The belly puts on a bright red wig
Last Line: Something like a hiccup, something like a sob
Subject(s): Bodies


BETWEEN HAMBURG AND BUENOS AIRES    Poem Text    
First Line: Yesterday I took the dying taxicab that is my body


BETWEEN THEM ROSE THE BONER OF CONTENTION       
First Line: Heart checks into a revitalization clinic
Last Line: Would be milk or lemonade, fig newtons or ginger snaps


BIRDSONG, SUNSETS       
Last Line: To confine them to the future as goals to work for, stratagems to %make him persevere


BIRTH ANGELS       
First Line: The heavy-lidded enterprise of the dead
Last Line: A sudden consciousness, the thrashing of wings
Subject(s): Angels


BIRTH REPORT       
First Line: The week the nuclear protesters stormed the gates
Last Line: Red mouth -- tearing and rending, devouring its children


BLACK DOG, RED DOG       
First Line: The boy waits on the top step, his hand on the door
Last Line: Black dog, red dog -- now more despairing, more resolved


BLACK GIRL VANISHING: DETROIT, 1970       
First Line: When the truck crawled up from the river
Last Line: Unable to hinder, unable to help: and still %the indifferent traffic keeps roaring past
Subject(s): Bodies


BLACK STITCHES DOWN THE MIDDLE       
First Line: While heart is at the butcher, a thief breaks
Last Line: The benefit of his contorted smiles and people's sympathy


BLEEDER       
First Line: By now I bet he's dead which suits me fine
Last Line: Some new loser to link us in frailty again


BODY OF ROMULUS       
First Line: The granular surface of the snow shines like parchment
Last Line: Pieces of liver, the bright blue eyes of the god


BODY'S CURSE       
First Line: Sad to say there's more than one--loneliness
Last Line: Question the whole crazy and quarrelsome %conglomeration, and it says touch me
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S HOPE       
First Line: Whatever lifts the body up -- muscles
Last Line: And the back door beckons and the peacocks cry
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S JOURNEY       
First Line: Born, it's not good for much, a vehicle
Last Line: Its calming stroke and a loon warbles its cry?
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S JOY       
First Line: The slick kiss of an oyster slipping
Last Line: A barn swallow that twists and flits, a bright %flung thing caught in the vanishing light
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S REPOSE AND DISCONTENT       
First Line: Sometimes the body needs to collect
Last Line: Through discontent we make it go, just so %some god someplace can watch it sparkle
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S STRENGTH       
First Line: The mind may not mind death. It means
Last Line: And no place left to get to
Subject(s): Bodies


BODY'S WEIGHT       
First Line: A bookcase has its books, a horse supports its rider
Last Line: Or butterfly wings, and then the darkness begins
Subject(s): Bodies


BONEYARD       
First Line: These people in the future won't be like us
Last Line: Black stumps, blackened foundations, %flat stones with people's names cut into them
Subject(s): Bodies


BOWLERS ANONYMOUS       
First Line: Here comes the woman who wears the plastic prick
Last Line: Flickers, fades, and is never perfect again


BRAVADO       
First Line: Smart, stupid -- let me tell you how to do it.
Last Line: I've just shown you how to write one


BRINK       
First Line: My son stands at the shore's lip
Subject(s): Bodies


BRINK       
First Line: My son stands at the shore's lip
Last Line: And won't the story be repeated until we ourselves %take the page and tear it from the book?
Subject(s): Bodies


CAN POETRY MATTER?    Poem Text    
First Line: Heart feels the time has come to compose lyric poetry.
Subject(s): Poetry & Poets


CAN POETRY MATTER?       
First Line: Heart feels the time has come to compose lyric poetry
Last Line: Corn field, and two old dobbins pulling a buckboard of song


CANTO HONDO       
First Line: For three days the goat was tied to the stoop
Last Line: A long and perilous journey, and why should we %worry and feel sorry when he felt only pride?
Subject(s): Bodies


CARD GAME       
First Line: The boy has never known her not to cheat
Last Line: Over her, keep his cat body nerby to protect her


CAREERS       
First Line: How difficult it was to look at them
Last Line: Those childless women from their chosen calling
Subject(s): Bodies


CECIL       
First Line: How calm is the spring evening, and the water


CEMETERY NIGHTS       
First Line: Sweet dreams, sweet memories, sweet taste of earth
Last Line: Will wake from sleep and perhaps bark back


CEMETERY NIGHTS 2       
First Line: Because the moon burns a bright orange
Last Line: Hitting trees, clumps of earth; seeking marauders, %indians,pirates to kill just to protect her


CEMETERY NIGHTS IV       
First Line: Betting on how many leaves cover a birch
Last Line: And what dark fields would be his destination?


CEMETERY NIGHTS V    Poem Text    
First Line: Wheel of memory, wheel of forgetting, bitter


CEMETERY NIGHTS V       
First Line: Wheel of memory, wheel of forgetting, bitter
Last Line: Presses his mouth to the erect nipple


CEZANNE AND THE LOVE OF COLOR    Poem Text    
First Line: Because his wife refused to miss a dress fitting
Last Line: Of color - true representatives of light and air
Subject(s): Bodies; Cezanne, Paul (1839-1906)


CEZANNE AND THE LOVE OF COLOR       
First Line: Because his wife refused to miss a dress fitting
Last Line: Of color -- true representatives of light and air
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE AND ZOLA    Poem Text    
First Line: At thirteen they were known as the inseparables
Last Line: “all day,” a friend said, “we heard the sound of weeping.”
Subject(s): Bodies; Cezanne, Paul (1839-1906); Zola, Emile (1840-1902)


CEZANNE AND ZOLA       
First Line: At thirteen they were known as the inseparables
Last Line: All day,' a friend said, 'we heard the sound of weeping.'
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S A MODERN OLYMPIA--1872       
First Line: Most women frightened him, their breasts, their beauty
Last Line: While before her on a pink sofa obviously at ease %rests cezanne himself unblushing and released
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S AMBITION       
First Line: He hungered for the fame of bouguereau
Last Line: Of blue sky stretching above it -- oh, blessed escape
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S ANGER       
First Line: Around the building where he worked, a tangle
Last Line: When he yanked open his windows and flung the ugly, %the slack or stupid canvas into the ravenous tr
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S COLDNESS       
First Line: Another person's hand upon his arm, the threat
Last Line: Some scrap of self with anger. Better to loathe them. %better to spit or they'd stick their hooks in
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S DOUBTS       
First Line: He was a hard painter to pose for. Hours stuck
Last Line: At the grim and outcast creature he had become
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S FAILURE       
First Line: His doubt made him impossible to live with
Last Line: Before his senses, saying, 'I paint with pleasure %but lack the wealth of color that animates nature
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S FORTRESS       
First Line: His clothing smelled, he rarely washed, often grumbling
Last Line: Of the artist himself. And the critics kept taunting: %'thetriflings of a savage, the daubs of a tra
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S LOVE OF POETRY       
First Line: Nearly friendless, with only a few years to live
Last Line: Like what slips by and what one keeps painting for
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S MONTAGNE SAINTE-VICTOIRE       
First Line: Observing cezanne's paintings of this mountain
Last Line: A slope-shouldered pile of stone, bald as a skull, %as if painting himself, painting his stony will
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S OUTRAGEOUSNESS       
First Line: Like a child,' mary cassatt said, describing
Last Line: I am the only one alive who can paint a red
Subject(s): Bodies; Cassatt, Mary (1844-1926); Cezanne, Paul (1839-1906); Paintings And Painters


CEZANNE'S PORTRAITS       
First Line: In cezanne's portraits of his family it seems
Last Line: To put down exactly, because wasn't it also his own: %the desire to escape his enemies, to be alone?
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S SECLUSION    Poem Text    
First Line: I have begun to think,' he wrote in a late letter
Last Line: Writing, “a vague sense of apprehesnion persists”
Subject(s): Cezanne, Paul (1839-1906); Solitude


CEZANNE'S SECLUSION       
First Line: I have begun to think,' he wrote in a late letter
Last Line: Into an expression of tenderness, which he dismissed, %writing: 'a vague sense of apprehension persi
Subject(s): Bodies


CEZANNE'S SUCCESS    Poem Text    
First Line: The girls he followed down the street, the heartbreaks
Last Line: Stopped calling. Harsh wind at night , no loving hands
Subject(s): Cezanne, Paul (1839-1906); Success


CEZANNE'S SUCCESS       
First Line: The girls he followed down the street, the heartbreaks
Last Line: Of mind. No jokes, no girls, no wine. The friends %stopped calling. Harsh wind at night, no loving h
Subject(s): Bodies


CHEAP VASE       
First Line: Pursued by threat of war and violence


CHILDREN       
First Line: In the evening the couples came down
Last Line: Are deserted. We were their future %and we have erased them from this earth
Subject(s): Bodies


CHOICES WERE BETWEEN HIS LIFE AND HIS ART       
Last Line: Dreams-a voice from his youth, an impractical voice


CLOUDS    Poem Text    
First Line: The clouds moved in another hundred feet
Subject(s): Clouds


CLOUDS       
First Line: The clouds moved in another hundred feet
Last Line: To find something solid to hold on to


CLOUDS ABOVE THE MOUNTAINS       
Last Line: Event already lost from memory


COMMIUNITY       
First Line: Had it worked well even once? Can one point
Last Line: Stamping and snarling and beating their chests


CONFESSION       
First Line: The nazi within me thinks it's time to take charge
Subject(s): Bodies


CONFESSION       
First Line: The nazi within me thinks it's time to take charge
Last Line: Not noisy. No singing, no dancing, no carrying on
Subject(s): Bodies


CONNECTIONS       
First Line: Two days of listening to a police radio
Last Line: My lungs like a swimmer diving to the bottom


CONSOLATIONS OF WATER    Poem Text    
First Line: Picking your way barefoot across the parking lot to the beach
Last Line: Soft hands seek to rub anger from stones
Subject(s): Seashore; Water


CONTINGENCIES    Poem Text    
First Line: There is a picture, a french painting showing


CONTINGENCIES       
First Line: There is a picture, a french painting, showing
Last Line: A glass target among all things pointed and haphazard


CONVIVIALITY OF COWS       
First Line: In the ungreased field they cling
Last Line: Kicking soft hooves for company


CORN TO POUND TO MAKE HIS BREAD       
First Line: Snakeroot, bloodroot, smartweed, nipplewort
Last Line: With his dusty brogan, he adds: and ladies too, of course


COUNTERPARTS    Poem Text    
First Line: There is no sky today, echoes of birds


COUNTERPARTS       
First Line: There is no sky today. Echoes of birds
Last Line: Of summer. There are seasons no longer acceptable


COUNTRY CLUB       
First Line: Among the yellow leaves of old oaks
Last Line: Fattens above me feathered and huge


COVETOUSNESS       
First Line: Keep your toys and small possessions
Last Line: Dreaming you were me, sleeping with mine


CRIMSON INVITATION       
First Line: More sex, more books, more cake, more murder
Last Line: As the sun sank into the water as if for forever


CROSSROADS       
First Line: Heights, I never climbed through windows.
Last Line: These are directions you too must follow


CUIADORES DE AUTOS       
First Line: It seems like the world's most useless profession --
Last Line: And grew confused with the pounding of my heart


DANCE, DANCE    Poem Text    
First Line: They have become quite a crowd: the ones
Last Line: Your shadow plays in the light cast up by the world.
Subject(s): Dancing & Dancers


DANCE, DANCE       
First Line: They have become quite a crowd: the ones
Last Line: Your shadow plays in the light cast up by the world
Subject(s): Dancing And Dancers


DANCING IN VACATIONLAND       
First Line: The people in the houses behind searsport are dancing
Last Line: Vacationland world might stop spinning beneath them


DARK AND TURBULENT SEA       
First Line: Sailboat, sailboat - so heart counts the ships at sea
Last Line: Is he aware of the wintry weather's fierce attack? Guess not


DAY THE WORLD ENDS       
First Line: The day on which the world ends will
Last Line: The ring, drags down the already forsaken shade
Subject(s): Bodies


DAYTONA FRESH AND INDIANAPOLIS IMMACULATE       
First Line: Just as a long rainy night in winter softens the trees
Last Line: Become one dollop of mush, one heap of chips, one dust


DEAD BABY       
First Line: My great-aunt had a story she often repeated
Last Line: Only to fail and feel it slip and fall away


DEAD CURTAIN       
First Line: Sometimes late in the evening, I count the hairs
Last Line: Trembles as somethng invisible slides through it


DEAD POET HA HA       
First Line: The bird on the branch was singing of gladness
Last Line: Inflaming the poet's farewell sparks my inspiration!


DEAD ROPE    Poem Text    
First Line: Chukka, chukka - so he repeats when the waitress


DEAD ROPE       
First Line: Chukka, chukka-so he repeats when the waitress
Last Line: Insult all the world with chukka, chukka, the creep?


DEATH LOBS A BOSOM INTO THE FIELD       
First Line: Toys that bounce, toys that jingle, toys that go whizbang
Last Line: A night bird trills, a bell chimes, cows shuffle back to the barn


DELICATE, PLUMMETING BODIES       
First Line: A great cry went up from the stockyards and
Last Line: Like a net to catch the delicate and plummeting bodies


DELICIOUS MONSTROSITY       
First Line: With the flat side of white plastic spatulas
Last Line: A little dance as he swiftly departs, licking %drops of blackberry jam from his unshaven lips
Subject(s): Bodies


DESIRE       
First Line: A woman in my class wrote that she is sick
Subject(s): Bodies


DESIRE       
First Line: A woman in my class wrote that she is sick
Last Line: In the cell block, steel bolts sliding shut
Subject(s): Bodies


DETERMINATION TO WRITE    Poem Text    
Subject(s): Writing & Writers


DIGGING THE KNIFE DEEPER       
First Line: One crystal of salt on the tongue. It isn't hot
Last Line: Of their complaint to make our evening more complete


DO THEY HAVE A REASON?       
First Line: Life begins, you make some friends, %what futures you plan for one another
Last Line: You love is changed for another, it's like that


DOG-TIRED CANNON FODDER WON'T SALUTE       
First Line: At times romance has wrinkles which even heart
Last Line: And why, asks heart, couldn't you have done that before?


DOUBLE       
First Line: Arriving home late one night, a man
Last Line: He dreams of fighting, he dreams of trucks %roaring their motors throughout the long night
Subject(s): Bodies


DREAM       
First Line: She dreams her girl loover steals toward her


EBB TIDE       
First Line: In early morning the gulls flew down to make


ECHOES       
First Line: With her tight black leotard a second skin
Last Line: She turns and casts her eye, she finds hereself %answering back, lovingly and full of desire
Subject(s): Bodies


ENVY       
First Line: You invite me to a banquet in your honor
Last Line: Is another reason to hate you


ERSATZ METAPHYSIC OF COMMERCIALISM       
First Line: Heart wonders why he's such a sucker
Last Line: Not a single vibration, all colors ashen, no horizon


EXILE       
First Line: The time came for him to be released
Last Line: The unruly fiction which he labored to believe
Subject(s): Alienation (social Psychology); Dissenters; Exiles; Marginality, Social


EXPANSION SLOTS       
First Line: The ground lies muddy and dark down here
Last Line: His own death in moscow at the age of sixty-one-- %my friends, I wish you all long lives
Subject(s): Bodies


EXPLAINING THE NATURE OF EVIDENCE       
First Line: After the tables and chairs
Last Line: You ask, what? You don't know who %I talk to, talking to you


EYELIDS    Poem Text    
First Line: Shy defiers of the existential world
Last Line: This is the world to love. There is no other
Subject(s): Bodies


EYELIDS       
First Line: Shy defiers of the existential world
Last Line: This is the world to love. There is no other
Subject(s): Bodies


FACE IN THE CEILING       
First Line: A man comes home to find his wife in bed
Last Line: How ferociously %the great machines bear down upon them %andhow courageous it is for them to be ther


FACES       
First Line: My daughter baby clio lies on her back
Last Line: Of a thief, one with the face of her father


FACING FAILURE       
First Line: Heart lies on on a board with his hands crossed
Last Line: The knack to join the ranks of the ambulatory defunct


FATAL KISSES       
First Line: Brutal lips, slasher lips -- as a stunned toddler
Last Line: Your skull -- all that's left of course -- grins and grins


FAVORITE IRAQI SOLDIER       
First Line: Into his kit when sent to the front he had tucked
Last Line: To devour me when my days on earth are done


FEAR       
First Line: His life frightened him. The sun in the sky
Last Line: Over and over, biting and rending the night air


FEET       
First Line: The brave, the beaten, the shameful ones
Last Line: Contortion just right, imagining the audience's %final roar,the curtain descending on its chains
Subject(s): Bodies


FIGHTING BACK       
First Line: At times it seems to heart that the truck has left
Last Line: With a washcloth over his brow and the music turned low


FINDING THE DIRECTION    Poem Text    
First Line: It is quiet. It is a place where


FINGERNAILS       
First Line: Little excavators, postage stamps
Last Line: While the silence answers with more silence %and a beetle shoves a pebble up a hill
Subject(s): Bodies


FLAWED LANGUAGE: THOUGHT'S SHADOW       
First Line: Love letters, heart is sick to death of love letters
Last Line: Heart returns to common diction for his lovelorn fiction


FLEAMARKEY       
First Line: A display of padlocks on a blanket on the sidewalk
Last Line: The eye that surveys the dark and sees only itself
Subject(s): Flea Markets


FOLK TALES       
First Line: Sometimes looking over your shoulder
Last Line: Lie unkissed in their beds, and all through %the city the lights are blinking out
Subject(s): Bodies


FOOTSTEP       
First Line: Each evening the man whose wife has gone
Last Line: For too long had been unmoving and unchanged


FOR ONE IT WAS THE WISH TO BE LOVED       
Last Line: Can't recall but which decides each day's action and worries him to %sleep at night


FOR YEARS HE THOUGHT MADNESS MUST BE PEACEFUL       
Last Line: Rushing out of control, pistons rattling, metal fracturing, gobs of %oil flung off


FRAGMENTS       
First Line: Now there is a slit in the blue fabric of air
Last Line: Beautiful daughters and one has died


FREIGHT CARS    Poem Text     Recitation
First Line: Once, taking a train into chicago
Subject(s): Bodies; Railroads; Railways; Trains


FREIGHT CARS       
First Line: Once, taking a train into chicago
Last Line: Come back, call home, we need you
Subject(s): Bodies; Railroads


FRENCHIE       
First Line: I was eating a chicken sandwich with mayonnaise
Last Line: The left hand can't pretend it doesn't know the right


FRIENDS OF HIS YOUTH    Poem Text    
First Line: Friends of his youth, friends of his prime
Subject(s): Friendship


FRIENDS OF HIS YOUTH, FRIENDS OF HIS PRIME       
Last Line: Ultimate listener-would, with a sympathetic whistle, casually dis-perse


FRIENDS WITH WHOM HE HAD QUARRELED       
Last Line: Road stretches ahead, indifferent and unexplored


FROM THE INVISIBLES       
First Line: In copley square, the derelics sit side by side
Last Line: Blazing up on a stack of old coats in copley square


FUNCTIONAL FORGETTING    Poem Text    
First Line: Here is the world, here the world's forgetting
Last Line: With opportunity. Ah, death, unloose your thighs
Subject(s): Forgetfulness


FUNCTIONAL FORGETTING       
First Line: Here is the world, here the world's forgetting
Last Line: With opportunity, ah, death, unloose your thighs
Subject(s): Forgetfulness


FUNERAL       
First Line: When her coffin had been carried from


FUNNY       
First Line: These guys, it's hard to believe these guys
Last Line: Fifty-year-old eyes. Now that's what I call funny


FUTURE       
First Line: Next day, next week, next year
Last Line: And just before it all becomes clear-- %safe at last, we shout, but is nobody there?
Subject(s): Bodies


GARDENER       
First Line: After the first astronauts reached heaven
Last Line: Begged him for the chance to make it on their own


GEESE       
First Line: As a green thread winds through blue fabric
Last Line: On his arm, turning and finding himself alone


GENERAL AND THE TANGO SINGER       
First Line: Some people put their trust in art, others
Last Line: Fire toddles off to dreamland on a full stomach


GENERAL MATTHEI DRIVES HOME THROUGH SANTIAGO    Poem Text    
First Line: The part where general matthei leaves his office
Subject(s): Matthei Aube, Fernando; Chile


GENERAL MATTHEI DRIVES HOME THROUGH SANTIAGO       
First Line: The part where general matthei leaves his office
Last Line: He will half roll and half shrug one of his shoulders %as if letting a heavy strap at last slide fro


GETTING TOUGHER       
First Line: In the workshop for transitional children
Last Line: Where the sun is rising and his friends waiting


GETTING UP       
First Line: The cat with yellow eyes doesn't yet realize
Last Line: And the cat takes a half-step, preparing to leap


GIRL IN WHITE       


GIVER OF GIFTS       
First Line: I am the giver of gifts, the bringer of life
Last Line: Is it the night, you sk? Now you understand me


GLUTTONY       
First Line: My stomach is the sky
Last Line: I am the island they see in the distance


GOD'S POORER PARTICLE, I.E. THE DEVIL       
First Line: After heart's pal frank gets mushed in a car wreck
Last Line: Must signify a sort of proof, but, of what, heart asks, of what?


GOLDEN BROILERS       
First Line: What is it about how these chickens set
Last Line: As he slaps the chicken's carcass across the counter


GOOD DEEDS       
First Line: Heart sits on a stump in the backyard
Last Line: The singing of formerly unheard birds grows audible


GOODBYE TO THE HANDS THAT HAVE TOUCHED HIM       
First Line: Rocky roads, sleepless nights, heart decides
Last Line: For breakfast he'll fry up a batch of dead poems


GOTTERON LANDSCAPE       
First Line: The stark rock bulk of gotteron ravine rises
Last Line: Winds him home through the rock bulk of gotteron ravine


GRANDFATHER POEM       
First Line: He is something he is falling into:
Last Line: Still echoing on what was never a funeral


GREAT DOUBTERS OF HISTORY       
First Line: The woman who kicked out the back window
Last Line: And no days off for your best behavior


GREAT JOB       
First Line: Heart considers the nature of fairness
Last Line: That he alone reaps the rewards of his manic guilt


GREEDY CHILD       
First Line: Gripping the mantel with thick fingers
Last Line: Wants to suck in all the rich and tasty world


GRIEF       
First Line: Trying to remember you
Last Line: My feet be severed from my body


GUITAR LESSON       
First Line: Hand gripping the girl's thivh, pressed nearly upon
Last Line: Teacher and all the tuneless world should thank her


GUN       
First Line: Late afternoon light slices through the dormer window
Last Line: This morning? Now it is smaller. Now it has gone away


GUTTER TROUBLE       
First Line: Detritus in the roadway: litter, broken
Last Line: I hoped to write woke me from the soundest sleep


HARSH WORDS, DISMISSIVE GESTURES)       
Last Line: Situation? By which he meant life itself


HE FELT BEST MOVING BETWEEN TWO POINTS       
Last Line: Never doubted his mastery


HE FELT BULLIED BY HIS POSSESSIONS       
Last Line: Played on the mantel for a few weeks before being banished to the %attic?


HE GREW FOND OF HIS UNCERTAINTIES       
Last Line: And whiskey-laden kisses. It's the only kiss that endures


HE HAD SPENT HIS YOUTH       
Last Line: The world kept on as before with no memory of his footsteps or %desire


HE KNEW HIS VULNERABILITIES       
Last Line: And accept those compromises which the day would force upon %him in return?


HE KNEW HIS VULNERABILITIES, AND CONCEALED THEM    Poem Text    


HE KNEW IT WAS FOOLISH       
Last Line: Before making his way home through the darkening city


HE LOVED HIS JOY       
Last Line: Gone, rushing again through the capricious world


HE LOVED THE GENERAL OVER THE PARTICULAR       
Last Line: Touching as he spun away to the silence of his life


HE PRIDED HIMSELF ON HIS HONESTY       
Last Line: Resemblance to how he saw himself? It became the only self %he had


HE TOLD HER, HE LOVED HER    Poem Text    
First Line: Party all day, party all night-a man
Last Line: Seeking out the face of his one true love
Subject(s): Love - Erotic


HE TOLD HER, HE LOVED HER       
First Line: Party all day, party all night-a man
Last Line: Seeking out the features of his own true love
Subject(s): Erotic Love


HIDDEN WITHIN THE SLEEVES OF THOSE DARK ROBES       
First Line: If they had shape, how beautiful might be that shape
Last Line: Our kind purpose enough, wasn't our love enough? %needle fingers, old needle fingers


HIMALAYAS WITHIN HIM       
First Line: Heart worries about the sound of his own heartbeat
Last Line: Artful coloration and his own heartbeat: constant and sly


HIS DECISION       
First Line: After his stroke (it was a tiny one)
Last Line: Of his choosing, he felt certain of it


HIS DEFINITION OF BEAUTY       
Last Line: Drifts off on the least of air


HIS FAILURES    Poem Text    
First Line: His failures - could he blame them on time


HIS FAILURES-COULD HE BLAME THEM ON TIME?       
Last Line: Him, soothed him and had never told the truth?


HIS FAVORITE BLUE CUP    Poem Text    
First Line: Over the years - and heart has had many years
Last Line: I've been away, says heart, I've been away
Subject(s): Memory


HIS FAVORITE BLUE CUP       
First Line: Over the years - and heart has had many years
Last Line: I've been away, says heart, I've been away
Subject(s): Memory


HIS LIFE WAS THE PRACTICE OF FORMING A SINGLE SENTENCE    Poem Text    
Last Line: Evolution and release: a full life
Subject(s): Conduct Of Life


HIS WANT FORMED A CRAVING NEVER SATISFIED       
Last Line: Him and draw him within, then shut the light


HOMERIC OFFERING       
First Line: Achilles leans back and strums his harp
Last Line: Tell that to his victims. How would they react


HOPELESS TOOLS       
First Line: These thorns that snatch at our sleeves
Last Line: Sharpness only, joy of tearing and rending


HOSPITAL WAITING ROOM    Poem Text    
First Line: Bald, yellow skinned, with only four
Last Line: Or cast down as litter on a barber’s floor
Subject(s): Hospitals


HOSPITAL WAITING ROOM       
First Line: Bald, yellow skinned, with only four
Last Line: Whether to be lifted up with great rejoicing %or cast down as litter on a barber's floor
Subject(s): Bodies


HOW COULD YOU EVER BE FINE?    Poem Text    
First Line: I dreamt last night I heard someone speak your name
Last Line: People on hard streets dragged to inevitable ends.
Subject(s): Bodies; Memory


HOW COULD YOU EVER BE FINE?       
First Line: I dreamt last night I heard someone speak your name
Last Line: On whom does it shine now, whom does it welcome? %people on hard streets dragged to inevitable ends
Subject(s): Bodies


HOW HE NURTURED HIS CYNICISM       
Last Line: Guard, the very sum of his cynicism, always it was the first to applaud his cunning


HOW IT WAS AT THE END    Poem Text    
First Line: The box was set in a hole in the ground
Last Line: From the trees to that nothingness called eternity
Subject(s): Bodies; Death


HOW IT WAS AT THE END       
First Line: The box was set in a hole in the ground
Last Line: From the trees to that nothingness called eternal
Subject(s): Bodies


HOW SWEET AND PROPER IT IS    Poem Text    
First Line: Color of silver, surrounded by barbed wire


HOW TO LIKE IT    Poem Text     Recitation by Author
First Line: These are the first days of fall. The wind
Subject(s): Animals; Dogs; Memory


HOW TO LIKE IT       
First Line: These are the first days of fall. The wind
Last Line: Answers to what comes next and how to like it
Subject(s): Animals; Dogs; Memory


HOW YOU ARE LINKED       
First Line: There are days when you wake and your body
Last Line: The treasure, the curiosity you have passionately %tried to decipher for all the years of your life
Subject(s): Bodies


HUNTING DOGS PURSUE THE WOUNDED DEER       
First Line: Heart descends to hell to look for old friends
Last Line: For a four leaf clover: a good-luck wish to save for later


I'M MUSCLE, I'M BRAWN       
First Line: Hearing the pet shop has picked up a load of pups
Last Line: That whiskey's smoky tang should overwhelm his tongue


IN A ROW    Poem Text     Recitation
First Line: The mailman handing me a letter
Last Line: I paid for that one, that one belongs to me
Subject(s): Money


IN A ROW       
First Line: The mailman handing me a letter
Last Line: I paid for that one, that one belongs to me
Subject(s): Bodies


IN SOME DREAMS HE COULD RUN       
Last Line: At times gaining entry, at times being turned away


IN THE BEGINNING, HE WAS LIKE A CROWD       
Last Line: That's the one you see now, your final partner, no choice about it


IN THE HOSPITAL       
First Line: He has refused absolution and moved piece by piece
Last Line: In benediction. There a tree, there a river, there a tree


INAPPROPRIATE GESTURES       
First Line: A butcher glances through a bank window and sees
Last Line: Ties to the train tracks of tomorrow's locomotive
Subject(s): Bodies


INDIFFERENCE TO CONSEQUENCE       
First Line: Blossoms like the fluted bells
Last Line: Roar your meager motor ever louder


INVASIONS    Poem Text    
First Line: The abrupt presentiment of illness
Last Line: Waking in a house you thought was yours forever
Subject(s): Bodies; Sickness; Family Life; Aging


INVASIONS       
First Line: The abrupt presentiment of illness
Last Line: Remember that time? A parade of bright mornings, %waking in a house you thought was yours forever
Subject(s): Bodies


IT WAS THE LACK OF CERTAINTY    Poem Text    


IT WAS THE LACK OF CERTAINTY THAT DISTURBED HIM       
Last Line: And thank you, and even passed the roast beef


IT'S LIKE THIS    Poem Text    
First Line: Each morning the man rises from bed because the invisible


IT'S LIKE THIS       
First Line: Each morning the man rises from bed because the invisible
Last Line: Until at last I lift you up and wrap you within me


IT'S NOT THE HOOKERS OR OPIUM DENS       
First Line: Heart decides that when you die your wrinkles
Last Line: Unearthed ex-chums, the dear departed together again


JAPANESE GIRL WITH RED TABLE       
First Line: The japanese girl thinks she will die today
Last Line: Hopelessly to hold his cup steady and make no face


JAPANESE GIRL WITH RED TABLE       


JONAH'S FLIGHT TO TARSHISH       
First Line: His mail, mostly bills, was already being forwarded
Last Line: Heard a story, which they have chosen not to repeat


KATIA READING       
First Line: The book is golden with an orange spine, and the girl
Last Line: Who condemned to a room is at last free of the room


KENTUCKY DERBY DAY, BELFAST, MAINE       
First Line: When I was twelve, I happened to guess the winning horse
Last Line: No, just another damn fool who won't make up his mind


LAST JUMPING JACKS       
First Line: Heart deliberates upon the end of the world
Last Line: Before the power is cut - still burning, still bright
Subject(s): Death; Hearts


LAUGHTER       
First Line: As a pair of hands can stretch a rubber band
Last Line: Black shapes grouped in winter trees, %trying to snatch something of their lives back
Subject(s): Bodies


LEARNING TO THINK       
First Line: My stepdaughter tells of voices in her head


LEAVING THE BAR AND LOW LIFE AT CLOSING, I UNSUCCESSFULLY       
First Line: Keep your laughter to yourself, dixieland band.
Last Line: Ever told me there were streets like these


LET'S PEEK AT THE DENTAL WORK       
First Line: Whoops, heart loses a tooth, then another
Last Line: Drinks with a straw, hides his teeth lest trouble starts


LETTER BEGINNING WITH THE FIRST LINE OF YOUR LETTER       
First Line: Here the weather remains the same. Constant
Last Line: The sea repeats your name to the desireless sand


LIGHT IS DUSKY THE SHADOWS LONG       
First Line: When people speak of recurring dreams, heart gets quiet
Last Line: Once its special note has been pointed out, you hear all round


LIKE A REVOLVING DOOR       
First Line: Heart feels sad. He's tired of being a heart
Last Line: Sometimes a car stops. Sometimes there is nothing


LIL' DARLIN'       
First Line: The radio station was a rip in the fabric
Last Line: As behind him one by one the lights blink out


LIVING ROOM       
First Line: Sunday, mid-afternoon, radiator pipes knocking
Last Line: And her parents' thin shapes among heavily laden trees


LOGO OF FIXED BEWILDERMENT       
First Line: In fragonard's painting of the girl on the swing
Last Line: Hoping to take that day's interpretation of heart from you


LONG STORY    Poem Text    
First Line: There must have been a moment after the expulsion
Last Line: And tack our few brave sentence onto the end
Subject(s): Garden Of Eden


LONG STORY       
First Line: There must have been a moment after the expulsion
Last Line: And tack a few meager phrases onto the end
Subject(s): Bodies


LOST    Poem Text    
First Line: A cry was heard among the trees


LOUD MUSIC       
First Line: My stepdaughter and I circle round and round


LOVE IS ELSEWHERE       
First Line: Heart journeys to a whorehouse to discuss love
Last Line: Off key - no doubt a smart alecky remark in bird talk


LOVE OF MUSIC       
Last Line: He had someplace important to get to, so he turned up his collar %and hurried away


LULLABY; FOR STEPHEN KING       
First Line: The zero of a yawn eclipses your face
Last Line: Goodnight, the century is going to sleep


LUMBERJACK SHIRTS AND MOTORCYCLE BOOTS       
First Line: Lacking muscles that pop from beneath his shirt
Last Line: He asks. No, no, declares heart, I'll eat them here


MACFLECKNA'S STOREFRONT CHURCH       
First Line: Heart has grown enamored of a pear-shaped critic
Last Line: Of a virgin's first night among the riffraff of sexual abandon


MALDITOS MAKE A RACKET       
First Line: The banditos of memory gallop their sorry nags
Last Line: And be like you or me or anyone-just a civilian


MARCH MORNING       
First Line: It could never fly--the heart in its cage
Last Line: Of muscle, while the heart heaves us upward, %with lips pursed to kiss the glistening air?
Subject(s): Bodies


MARSYAS, MIDAS AND THE BARBER       
First Line: The duel between marsyas and apollo was one of those
Last Line: In favor of a long life and anonymity forever?


MEN WITH LONG FACES       
First Line: The men with long faces have come after my knives
Last Line: How shall the darkness now keep its distance?


MERMAID       
First Line: When are we satisfied or get what we want
Last Line: To his own unique but not uncommon story


MIDDLE-AGED BLACK MEN       
First Line: Here is the sea and here a boat upon the sea
Last Line: Here was the sea and here a boat upon the sea


MINUTE GRIT IN DEATH'S UNDERGARMENTS       
First Line: Each fuck is a poke in death's meddlesome eye
Last Line: His orb: death's own eye, of course, being forever dry


MORE HE CONSIDERED HIS DEATH       
Last Line: Promise, it was the child who hurried forward to take him by the %hand


MORGUE ATTENDANTS CLUTCH THEIR KEYS       
First Line: Heart checks out the morgue at midnight to catch
Last Line: The living to work as day number xxx cranks up


MORNING NEWS       
First Line: Searching for bugs, rolling in the grass
Last Line: Their bright chatter as wisps of fog shift %like tattered cloth and soon the foghorns blow
Subject(s): Bodies


MORNING SONG       
First Line: Today, the pastures have dressed in their best grasses
Last Line: Not knowing for what


MOUNTAIN       
First Line: Who does the mountain belong to anyway? As wordsworth
Last Line: That like a mountain he will ask nothing of all the world


MUSIC ONE LOOKS BACK ON       
First Line: In early autumn, there's a concerto
Last Line: And geese, geese flying south out of winter
Subject(s): Bodies


NAME-BURNING    Poem Text    
First Line: Ashes, the dissonance of unicorns; the edges


NAME-BURNING       
First Line: Ashes, the dissonance of unicorns: the edges
Last Line: Shakes himself, grumbles off through fields %of flowering clover


NATURE OF LOVE       
First Line: Heart makes an inquiry into the nature of love
Last Line: To climb aboard. He holds his pen aloft like a baton


NEW AUSTERITY       
First Line: Heart is lonely so he buys a bird
Last Line: In the new austerity of heart's life, this is enough


NIGHT SWIMMER       
First Line: Lifting his arms, the man half swims
Last Line: When he had only his own good name to lose


NIHILIST       
First Line: He was depressed so he made something
Last Line: Wrong, wrong again. Listen carefully, hear the laughter


NO HANDS       
First Line: Punch in the nose, kick in the head
Last Line: Of the daffodils, then passes away


NO MAP    Poem Text    
First Line: How close the clouds press this october first
Last Line: Showing the dark places and how to escape them?
Subject(s): Surgery; Fathers & Sons; Birthdays


NO MAP       
First Line: How close the clouds press this october first
Last Line: Showing the dark places and how to escape them?
Subject(s): Bodies


NO MOMENT PAST THIS ONE    Poem Text    
First Line: I tell you, it always seems to be out there


NO MOMENT PAST THIS ONE       
First Line: I tell you, it seems to be always out there
Last Line: How could I live, how could it be withstood?


NO TANGOS TONIGHT    Poem Text    
First Line: Heart meets death in a fashionable singles bar
Last Line: But then a dance begins, a tango. Heart will sit it out
Subject(s): Dancing & Dancers; Death; Hearts; Dead, The


NO TANGOS TONIGHT       
First Line: Heart meets death in a fashionable singles bar
Last Line: But then a dance begins, a tango. Heart will sit it out
Subject(s): Dancing And Dancers; Death; Hearts


NOISE THE HAIRLESS MAKE       
First Line: How difficult to be an angel.
Last Line: The noise the hairless make when defeated


NOSES       
First Line: Little emissary to tomorrow
Last Line: Between these sweet upside down heart shapes?
Subject(s): Bodies


NOUNS OF ASSEMBLAGE       
First Line: Two scenes lie before us. In the first
Last Line: Horde, clamor, litter, swarm) do you belong?


OATMEAL DELUXE    Poem Text    
First Line: This morning, because the snow swirled deep
Subject(s): Oatmeal


OATMEAL DELUXE       
First Line: This morning, because the snow swirled deep
Last Line: What trouble could I make for you, a woman?


OCCASIONALLY AND FOR WHAT SEEMED NO REASON       
Last Line: A few bright threads of borrowed splendor


OCCUPANT IN PERMANENT TRANSIT       
First Line: Heart brings back a hermit crab from the beach
Last Line: As big as alaska on its back. Bigger yet, the very planet


ODYSSEUS'S HOMECOMING       
First Line: You see, it was the deception that did it


OF COURSE HE SAW THAT HIS DISLIKE OF RECEIVED IDEAS       
Last Line: Mystification and obscurity, couldn't he claim that it was innovation?


OFTEN IN DREAMS...       
Last Line: A dream city, all swept away when he departed from the other, %the one we call real


OFTEN, IN DREAMS, HE MOVED THROUGH A CITY       
Last Line: The other, the one we call real


OH, IMMOBILITY, DEATH'S VAST ASSOCIATE    Poem Text    
First Line: Oh, immobility, death's vast associate, you are the still center around which we jog.
Last Line: The reality? To bang your drum in the mortal parade. And the dream? To believe yourself dancing
Subject(s): Alienation (social Psychology); Inertia


OH, IMMOBILITY, DEATH'S VAST ASSOCIATE       
Last Line: Parade. And the dream? To believe yourself dancing
Subject(s): Death; Dreams; Physical Disabilities


OLD WHAT'S-HIS-NAME       
First Line: Heart writes a letter to the ones who are missing
Last Line: Old what's-his-name, the fellow thinks: up to his tricks


ONE GOOD TURNS DESERVES ANOTHER       
First Line: As a gift to his friends, heart offers to take on
Last Line: He begins to recite every bit of verse he knows by heart


ORPHEUS       
First Line: Immediately on emerging from the dark tunnel
Last Line: But slaughter what had pricked their creature hearts?


OVER A CUP OF COFFEE OR SITTING ON A PARK BENCH    Poem Text    
Last Line: Uncharted lands.
Subject(s): Childhood Memories


OVER HERE HE MADE A PILE       
Last Line: Made its own pile


OVER THERE HE MADE    Poem Text    
First Line: Over there he made a pile of what he had had


PABLO NERUDA       
First Line: Pablo neruda stands on a corner next to a poster
Last Line: Throb deep in their black pockets. Bite me, bite me!


PARACHUTES       
First Line: He'd not known he loved her so he let her go


PARTY       
First Line: You enter a room -- indians, iraqis
Last Line: That gets left over when all the rest collapses


PASSING THE WORD    Poem Text    
First Line: The poem as object; communicable; naked
Subject(s): Poetry & Poets


PASSING THE WORD       
First Line: The poem as object; communicable; naked
Last Line: Her half smile nd dreams of trees heavy with apples


PASTEL DRESSES       
First Line: Like a dream, which when one
Last Line: Can we not hate it for what it takes away?


PATIENCE    Poem Text    
First Line: What is she ran shouting from the house? What if she
Subject(s): Fathers & Daughters


PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS    Poem Text    
First Line: This is how my friend behaves: first


PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS       
First Line: This is how my friend behaves: first
Last Line: You take the vegetable and plant it


PLACE BETWEEN US       
First Line: You sit as I do
Last Line: With our own hands


PLACE IN MAINE       
First Line: Shoebox upon shoebox -- the elderly dwawdle
Last Line: And all my world is busting up outside


PLAY IN FOUR ACTS    Poem Text    
First Line: South was the promise we were born with


PLEASURE OF CREATING SOMETHING       
Last Line: Foolish to think no payment was due; his error was in not learning %the price


POEM ENDING WITH A LINE BY SU TUNG-PO       
First Line: My friend is afraid he is dying. Of course
Last Line: One must make certain that the mind never clings


PONY EXPRESS       
First Line: Some would have you think the pony express
Last Line: Just seems to flash out as if someone had snatched %up its last light and smashed it to the ground?


PRIVILEGES OF PHILOSOPHY       
First Line: Two barn owls discuss descartes as they
Last Line: Shivers, yawns, then drops another two degrees


PROOF       
First Line: The body's fear is to be forcibly overthrown
Last Line: Pain corroborates the world. His body's %taste between his teeth proved he was alive
Subject(s): Bodies


PURSUIT    Poem Text    
First Line: Each thing I do I rush through so I can do


PUSHING AHEAD       
First Line: A brush fire that sweeps up the hill devouring
Last Line: Of charred tree trunks? I made it, this is mine


PUTTING IT ALL AWAY       
First Line: The wind from the mountains is closing my doors
Last Line: The whole house is like red mittens. %I put them aside


QUERENCIA       
First Line: In the children's story of ferdinand the bull
Last Line: That word could have any meaning in such a world


QUERENICA    Poem Text    
First Line: In the children's story fernando the bull


QUIET TIME       
First Line: Burdened by hazards the future seems to hold
Last Line: The horses running loose over the bloody plain


RAIN SONG       
First Line: The woods are full of men with umbrellas
Last Line: Body greased and waiting for the long swim


READY AND WAITING       
First Line: Heart feels ready to begin the work of forgiveness
Last Line: What happens, nobody can say he was caught napping


RECEIVERS OF THE WORLD'S ATTENTION       
First Line: It is the shoes that show the breaking point
Last Line: A new black pump with the heel snapped off
Subject(s): Bodies


RED GERANIUMS    Poem Text    
First Line: She says she believes in reincarnation
Last Line: The sudden emotion the confusion then nothing?
Subject(s): Flowers; Geraniums; Reincarnation; Transmigration; Pretas


RED GERANIUMS       
First Line: She says she believes in reincarnation
Last Line: Is this what causes these unexpected over-sweepings: %the sudden emotion, the confusion, then nothin
Subject(s): Flowers; Geraniums; Reincarnation


REFUSING THE NECESSARY       
First Line: Becoming the river, we are the river
Last Line: And bottom, we may hang forever


ROOM       
First Line: Either it's her sister or an apparition, and she hopes
Last Line: Without book or roman senate or big sister to amuse her


ROOTLESS    Poem Text    
First Line: He must have been born with greased feet
Last Line: Where he has come from and what lies ahead
Subject(s): Bodies


ROOTLESS       
First Line: He must have been born with greased feet
Last Line: Where he has come from and what lies ahead
Subject(s): Bodies


ROUGHHOUSING    Poem Text    
First Line: Tonight I let loose the weasel of my body
Last Line: Your pastures rush toward me to embrace me
Subject(s): Love - Erotic


ROUGHHOUSING       
First Line: Tonight I let loose the weasel of my body
Last Line: Your pastures rush toward me to embrace me
Subject(s): Erotic Love


SANTIAGO: FIVE MEN IN THE STREET: NUMBER ONE       
First Line: Four fellows in orange uniforms
Last Line: Unfurl their little flags of green


SANTIAGO: FIVE MEN IN THE STREET: NUMBER TWO       
First Line: In the back of a garbage truck parked on a side street
Last Line: Into the trash with einstein and his furious sums!


SANTIAGO: FORESTAL PARK       
First Line: Teenagers and oldsters, married couples and lovers --
Last Line: Kindly it takes my hand as we cross the busy street


SANTIAGO: IN PRAISE OF COMMUNITY       
First Line: Six blind women bustle along with arms linked
Last Line: Blinded by the excitement of completing his ode


SANTIAGO: LA AVENIDA PEDRO DE VALDIVIA       
First Line: This is common: two ancient buses careening
Last Line: Youngster flings into the face of another


SANTIAGO: MARKET DAY IN WINTER       
First Line: Among market stalls the pickpockets prowl
Last Line: Let me sit among thieves and learn to steal


SAY THAT EACH WORD IS A BOARD       
Last Line: So slight that it might even be imagined. Breathe lightly, %don't you feel it now?


SCATTERED OAKS IN FULL LEAF       
First Line: Why must calm and reasonable behavior make up
Last Line: Morning light bedecking the palm trees, blue vaults ascending


SEEING OFF A FRIEND       
First Line: Early april on broadway, south of union square
Last Line: All his answers cover their faces


SEPARATE TIME       
First Line: In the years since I saw you on sunday
Last Line: And a woman calling her husband in for the night


SEPARATIONS       
First Line: To begin with photographs of summer: lakes
Last Line: Cold night, cold street: my love, we had such %kind intentions


SHAVING       
First Line: It is really the most minuscule thing
Last Line: Floating, and then they're gone of course
Subject(s): Bodies


SHORT RIDES       
First Line: What is the division between good intention
Last Line: As life slips by in a succession of short rides


SHRILL       
First Line: Like an abandoned car, engine gone
Last Line: A writer, and her father, a rabbi--kind people %for whom her cry goes on undiminished
Subject(s): Bodies


SIDEBOARD'S MAHOGANY SURFACE       
First Line: Click, click, the man flicks out the downstairs' lights
Last Line: The woman frowns, begins to speak, then bites her tongue


SILENCE       
First Line: I am the music you were born to.
Last Line: I am where you are going


SIX POEMS ON MOVING       
First Line: I precede you in emergencies. I betray you
Last Line: Now it is over you. Now it is falling


SKELETON       
First Line: That human pyramid those circus
Last Line: Cranks up and the lions, like a whiff of ruin, %dismember the complacency with their roars
Subject(s): Bodies


SKETCHING HECTOR'S EYE       
First Line: In my sketchbook of lonely moments
Last Line: On my knees and weep as my own story ends


SLIPPING AWAY       
First Line: It could be like one of those dreams
Last Line: And across it is printed whose name?
Subject(s): Bodies


SLOTH       
First Line: If you were running, now you are
Last Line: Close them. Tomorrow might be a hard day


SO SKILLFUL GREW HIS RHETORIC OF SEDUCTION       
Last Line: More than particles of sand in a sahara of his making?


SOMETIMES CONFUSION WAS A VEIL    Poem Text    
First Line: Sometimes confusion was a veil across his eyes
Last Line: Him at last in clarity as lately as he had seen them in confusion
Subject(s): Confusion


SOMETIMES CONFUSION WAS A VEIL ACROSS HIS EYES       
Last Line: Seeing him at last in clarity as lately he had seen them in %confusion


SOMEWHERE IT STILL MOVES       
First Line: I was having dinner with my friends howie and francine
Last Line: Is possible. We are the creatures that love and slaughter


SONG FOR MAKING THE BIRDS COME    Poem Text    
First Line: All winter you felt nothing. As your body


SONG FOR MAKING THE BIRDS COME       
First Line: All winter you felt nothing. As your body
Last Line: You have summoned arrive to make their nests


SONG FOR PUTTING ASIDE ANGER    Poem Text    
First Line: Four walls open to the sky. You are
Subject(s): Anger


SONG OF FOUR DANCERS       
First Line: A path between two rows of pines; spring
Last Line: He cannot imagine a time without her


SONG OF THE DROWNED BOY       
First Line: Three oranges on a blue plate
Last Line: Lady of water has taken me home


SONG OF THE WRONG RESPONSE       
First Line: The poem is bare-chested, black and
Last Line: Each time you will act falsely and be afraid


SORRY FRONDS OF THE PALM TREES       
First Line: Dressed in white and driving a white panel truck
Last Line: As he patiently waits for the poison to exit his system


SPIDER WEB        Recitation by Author


SPIDER WEB       
First Line: There are stories that unwind themselves as simply


SPIRITUAL CHICKENS       
First Line: A man eats a chicken every day for lunch
Last Line: His corner on truth? -- better just to go crazy


SPITE       
First Line: I steal your mailbox, leave
Last Line: Yesterday, I stole your curtains


SPLEEN    Poem Text    
First Line: Oh, much maligned one, meager hunkerer
Last Line: The one, our burden, and the other, our dream
Subject(s): Spleen (organ)


SPLEEN       
First Line: Oh, much maligned one, meager hunkerer
Last Line: The one, our burden, and the other, our dream
Subject(s): Bodies


SPRING RAIN       
First Line: Drill holes in small rocks, then press your lips
Last Line: Turning back on themselves, always back on themselves


STREET       
First Line: Across the street, the carpenter carries a golden
Last Line: And all that immense black space between them


STREETLIGHT       
First Line: The streetlight from my patents' bed at night split
Last Line: You're nothing I desire -- then looks away


SUCH DAYS AS THESE    Poem Text    


SUCH DAYS AS THESE       
Last Line: Shadows across the lawn. How soon the sun begins to set


SUCH PLEASURES HE HAD TAKEN    Poem Text    


SUCH PLEASURES HE HAD TAKEN IN BOOKS       
Last Line: Measure himself against and nothing of the future to encourage his %restless speculation


SUMMER EVENINGS    Poem Text    
First Line: As I finish my wine, I think of my friends
Last Line: Enriched by them
Subject(s): Friendship


SUMMER EVENINGS       
First Line: As I finish my wine, I think of my friends
Last Line: The solitary journey made by each of us, %rushing streams, broad rivers, unknown seas
Subject(s): Bodies


SUN GAZERS    Poem Text    
First Line: My stepdaughter is three and we have some games


SUN GAZERS       
First Line: My stepdaughter is three and we have some games


SURPRISE       
First Line: As a man with a trowel can smear wet concrete
Last Line: And with what further disguises and gray %substitutions will the years malign my bones?
Subject(s): Bodies


SWEAT       
First Line: Lacrimae [or lachrymae] of the body, for whom do you weep?
Last Line: Dark circles stain its clothes beneath the armpits
Subject(s): Bodies; Perspiration


SYRACUSE NIGHTS       
First Line: So your belly feels hungry
Last Line: I guess your guess is as good as mine. %is that how the nights take you, my friend?


TAKING A CRACK AT IT    Poem Text    
First Line: We have discovered dark paint for the sky


TEN FEET OF ROPE       
First Line: Tight around my waist the knot
Last Line: This was a beginning


TENDERLY    Poem Text    
First Line: It's not a fancy restaurant, nor is it
Last Line: Darling, touch me there, tenderly, one more time!
Subject(s): Restaurants; Cafes; Diners


TENDERLY       
First Line: It's not a fancy restaurant, nor is it
Last Line: Darling, touch me there, tenderly, one more time
Subject(s): Restaurants


THAT DAY HE AND THE WOMAN SPENT HOURS ON HORSEBACK       
Last Line: Creatures, hauling themselves inch by inch toward ever vanishing %horizons?


THAT STUFF ABOUT A BETTER PLACE       
First Line: It seems to heart that people are dying at a faster rate
Last Line: And that, making diving misses as his friends go splat, splat


THDE NEW AUSTERITY    Poem Text    
First Line: Heart is lonely so he buys a bird
Last Line: In the new austerity of heart's life, this is enough
Subject(s): Pets


THE BIRTH ANGELS    Poem Text    
First Line: The heavy-lidded enterprise of the dead
Last Line: A sudden consciousness, the thrashing of wings
Subject(s): Angels


THE BODY'S HOPE    Poem Text    
First Line: Whatever lifts the body up -- muscles
Last Line: But eagerness to plunge into the next second
Subject(s): Bodies


THE BODY'S JOURNEY    Poem Text    
First Line: Born, it's not good for much, a vehicle
Last Line: Its calming stroke and a loon warbles its cry?
Subject(s): Bodies


THE BODY'S JOY    Poem Text    
First Line: The slick kiss of an oyster slipping
Last Line: Flung thing caught in ther vanishing light
Subject(s): Bodies


THE CHERRY TREE    Poem Text    
First Line: Perched on the fifth rung of the ladder, the girl
Subject(s): Cherry Trees


THE CLOUDS ABOVE THE OCEAN    Poem Text    
First Line: The clouds above the ocean of mexico – how palable they are
Last Line: With his surrender a minor event already lost from memory
Subject(s): Clouds; Storms


THE COMMUNITY        Recitation by Author


THE EXIGENCIES OF ART        Recitation by Author


THE GARDNER    Poem Text     Recitation by Author
First Line: After the first astronauts reached heaven


THE GREEDY CHILD    Poem Text    
First Line: Gripping the mantle with thick fingers


THE GUITAR LESSON    Poem Text    
First Line: Hand gripping the girl's thigh, pressed nearly upon


THE INVITATION    Poem Text     Recitation by Author
First Line: There are lives in which nothing goes right


THE MERCY OF LAZARUS    Poem Text    
First Line: Groggy, sure, and in the midst of bad dreams
Last Line: His miracle without your deceit-- your laugh and eager shout, the out-stretched arms?
Subject(s): Lazarus


THE MORE HE CONSIDERED HIS DEATH    Poem Text    
Subject(s): Death; Dead, The


THE MUSIC ONE LOOKS BACK ON    Poem Text    
First Line: In early autumn, there's a concerto
Last Line: And geese, geese flying flying south out of winter
Subject(s): Guests; Family Life; Friendship


THE PROOF    Poem Text    
First Line: The body's fear is to be forcibly overthrown
Last Line: Taste between his teeth proved he was alive
Subject(s): Bodies


THE ROOM    Poem Text    
First Line: Either it's her sister or an apparition, and she hopes


THE SIDEBOARD'S MAHOGANY SURFACE    Poem Text    
First Line: Click, click, the man flicks out the downstairs' light


THE STREET    Poem Text    
First Line: Across the street, the carpenter carries a golden


THE SURVIVAL VARIATION    Poem Text    
First Line: Trees like apartment buildings, closed


THE WAYS OF KEYS    Poem Text    
First Line: The justice of bells, persistent in ringing


THEIR TETE-A-TETE IS DONE       
First Line: Something deep, resembling headache or plantar wart
Last Line: Tottering on the brink of the white space spilling past this point


THESEUS WITHIN THE LABYRINTH    Poem Text    
First Line: The lives of greeks in old days were deep


THESEUS WITHIN THE LABYRINTH       
First Line: The lives of greeks in the old days were deep
Last Line: Jumpy, full of second thoughts, and bravely unprepared


THIS LIFE       
First Line: Blue sky to the south, clouds to the north
Last Line: We will say is so impossible to walk through


THOSE BRICK WALLS       
Last Line: Mark on the road to someplace else


THOUGHTS AT THIRTY-THOUSAND FEET    Poem Text    
First Line: The penny holds out its little promise
Last Line: So keep the whole mess from exploding
Subject(s): Air Travel


THOUGHTS AT THIRTY-THOUSAND FEET       
First Line: The penny holds out its little promise
Last Line: Like a locked door against the earth %to keep the whole mess from exploding
Subject(s): Bodies


THUS HE ENDURED       
First Line: Heart's friend greasy gets nixed by a stroke
Last Line: His pals ditto: pallbearers envying the one who rides


TO BLOW YOUR ENEMY A FINAL KISS       
First Line: Heart's two feet are stuck two feet deep in the muck
Last Line: Return to litigate against the goat? Heart won't push his luck


TO CONCEAL THE PIERCING LIGHT       
First Line: For a few weeks heart lugs about an antique possum
Last Line: Heart puts a finger to his lips. Meanwhile his mind races


TO EXIST IN THE GIVEN MINUTE       
First Line: A long stick with a hook and a first rate fly reel
Last Line: All the negligible stuff he neglects, overlooks, or forgets he likes?


TO KEEP ONE'S TREASURE PROTECTED    Poem Text    
First Line: Within the lump of coal the flame lies hidden
Last Line: A sigh – isn't it like a scream turned inward?
Subject(s): Human Behavior


TO PULL INTO ONESELF AS INTO A LOCKED ROOM       
First Line: These are days of sickness and forgetting
Last Line: But to each one he says no


TO SLEEP THE SLEEP OF THE JUST       
First Line: Heart is visited by the police who want him to discuss
Last Line: Just the fear the old fossil might fall flat keeps him alert


TO STAND ON A HIGH PLACE    Poem Text    


TO STAND ON A HIGH PLACE       
Last Line: Line between shifting cloud and unsettled water


TOMATOES        Recitation by Author
First Line: A woman tavels to brazil for plastic / surgery and a face-lift. She is sitxy
Subject(s): Surgery, Plastic; Cosmetic Sugery; Face Lifts


TOMATOES       
First Line: A woman tavels to brazil for plastic %surgery and a face-lift. She is sitxy
Last Line: Starvation, think of his ravenous kisses
Subject(s): Surgery, Plastic


TONGUE       
First Line: Is it you who have destroyed me, sweetness
Last Line: Still ascendent, embracing the compromise %that elevates death as the inevitable draw
Subject(s): Bodies


TOPLESS       
First Line: At first I went just for the girls
Last Line: Zigzagged like lightning across the fretful dark


TOTING IT UP    Poem Text    
First Line: He bought one pair of boots, then another
Last Line: In the distance, that brightly disappearing speck
Subject(s): Conduct Of Life


TOTING IT UP       
First Line: He bought one pair of boots, then another
Last Line: In the distance, that brightly disappearing speck
Subject(s): Bodies


TRAFFIC       
First Line: I was driving to pick up my daughter from day care
Last Line: And I would thrust my fingers into the grass %and hang there, arching my back and quick of breath
Subject(s): Bodies; City Traffic


TRIANGULAR FIELD       
First Line: In bright morning sunlight, the horse appears pink
Last Line: But who for the brief moment he has chosen to believe


TROUBLE IN MIND       
First Line: Blue shadows falling, heart explains to the cat
Last Line: They shiver and drop gobs of oil. They rasp and growl


UNDER THE GREEN CEILING       
First Line: Two men walk along the edge of a country road
Last Line: Of a world that is endlessly random and violent


UNEXPECTED HOLIDAY    Poem Text    
First Line: In the story of orpheus and lot's wife
Last Line: The slightest hint but still distinct taste of salt
Subject(s): Lot (bible); Mythology - Classical; Orpheus; Sodom


UNEXPECTED HOLIDAY       
First Line: In the story of orpheus and lot's wife
Last Line: The slightest hint but still distinct taste of salt
Subject(s): Lot (bible); Mythology - Classical; Orpheus; Sodom


UNTIL WE DROOL AND PISS OURSELVES       
First Line: Car honk, donkey bray, seal bark - it's only since
Last Line: This tumult, undefined, forms the footpath to the final death: his own
Subject(s): Change; Death; Social Protest


UPRISING       
First Line: Straitjacket, straitjacket, straitjacket
Last Line: Let's make sure they bury us standing up


UTOPIAN MELODIES       
First Line: As a stone has a sense of its hardness
Subject(s): Bodies


UTOPIAN MELODIES       
First Line: As a stone has a sense of its hardness
Subject(s): Bodies


VALENTINE MATHEMATICS       
First Line: Heart rides a wagon down a mountainside
Last Line: A black line. Those who come next can add them up


VANITY       
First Line: He lines the walls with mirrors
Last Line: He wears fur coats inside out


VELOCITY OF COWS       
First Line: Standing there with tony sorce
Last Line: Share the velocity of cows


VISITOR    Poem Text    
First Line: Those patches of cold air on the far side
Last Line: Now the chance of answering has passed?
Subject(s): Death; Souls


WAKING       
First Line: Waking, I look at you sleeping beside me
Last Line: Seemed clear and each moment was its own reward


WAKING, THE CHEERING BEGINS    Poem Text    
First Line: Suddenly, rising, another rises with him


WALLS TO PUT UP, WALLS TO TAKE DOWN       
First Line: The old madhouse in santiago stood tucked back
Last Line: Leaving just the city, its constant jittery motion
Subject(s): Bodies


WAY IT GOES OR THE PROPER USE OF LEISURE TIME       
First Line: Now all my words are bricks
Last Line: This is a poem abut being alone


WAYS OF KEYS       
First Line: The justice of bells persistent in ringing
Last Line: Learn the ways of keys


WHAT GOOD IS LOVE UNLESS IT'S AGGRESSIVE?       
First Line: Deck the halls with cock and balls, intones heart
Last Line: Before the greasy water in his fish tank breaks into a boil


WHAT NEXT?       
First Line: Heart tunes in his poetry shortwave crystal set
Last Line: But this time no waiting on the front steps staring at his mailbox


WHAT THEY DO ALWAYS       
First Line: Through the peugeot's open window we heard it
Last Line: Here a splash makes no sound. It must be imagined


WHAT YOU HAVE COME TO EXPECT       
First Line: The worn plush of the seat chafes your bare legs
Last Line: Is the crude outline of the moon's: distant, as any family %you might have had; cold, in a way you h


WHAT YOU SHOULD HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT EARLIER       
First Line: Twelve murderers are eating their dinners
Last Line: The ones you should have thought about earlier. %ring ding goes the doorbell. Welcome to crazy times
Subject(s): Bodies


WHEN HE FELT MOST LOVED       
Last Line: Or had ever known more than the rock walls and shadow


WHEN HE WAS MAKING LOVE       
Last Line: Claim him, none of his own


WHEN THE LEAVES FELL AND THE OCTOBER WIND SHOOK THE TREES       
Last Line: Wind through the trees he felt certain he heard his name being %called


WHEN TUBES PIERCE EVERY EXTREMITY       
First Line: Wrinkled face and liver-spotted hands
Last Line: And out creeps the old joy-hook for a fortifying pinch


WHEN YOU'RE DANCING, MAKE THE WHOLE WORLD DANCE WITH YOU    Poem Text    
First Line: Bring my name upon a platter, I have danced
Subject(s): Dancing & Dancers


WHERE WE ARE       
First Line: A man tears a chunk of bread off the brown loaf
Last Line: From the dark, flits across a lighted hall and disappears


WHITE PIG       
First Line: A family decides to have a party
Last Line: Through the dark places, songs of conquest and revenge


WHITE SKIRT       
First Line: For an hour he wonders what the girl could be thinking
Last Line: Grips his arm, draws him down to his own dark home


WHITE THIGHS       
First Line: White thighs like slices of white cake
Last Line: His final capitulation to the dark


WHO IS MISTAKEN?       
First Line: These small lizards darting across the white
Last Line: Brute nature. Some he plays with, some he eats


WHY FOOL AROUND?    Poem Text    
First Line: How smart is smart? Thinks heart. Is smart
Last Line: Smart or stupid they circle the hook: their education
Subject(s): Reason; Schools; Intellect; Rationalism; Brain; Mind; Intellectuals; Students


WHY FOOL AROUND?       
First Line: How smart is smart? Thinks heart. Is smart
Last Line: Smart or stupid they circle the hook: their education
Subject(s): Reason; Schools


WHY IS HE SUDDENLY PARALYZED?       
First Line: Sometimes the sky is so blue that it makes heart sad
Last Line: Accustomed to the importunities of dreamers such as heart


WIND CHIMES       
First Line: Begin with a victorian cottage in a rhode island
Last Line: At the door and his whole busy life rushes forward


WINDOW       
First Line: The woman who is waiting for the evening draws
Last Line: Look, they say, see how gracefully we are dancing


WINTER NIGHTS       
First Line: Like day laborers bunched around a construction site
Last Line: And ever so fragile expectation of happiness?


WISH HAD BEEN THERE ALL ALONG       
Last Line: Watch the clouds in their flight across the sky


WORLD'S MASTER PLAN       
First Line: Baby bird with uplifted beak. Kitten, calf, or pup
Last Line: Defecation constructs the globe on which he stands


WORLD'S SIDEWALKS AND DAILY HOOPLA       
First Line: When heart's lover's breast gets lopped off - a surgeon's
Last Line: Slope, the arched expanse of velvet skin, the perky nipple


WOUNDS WITHOUT PAIN       
First Line: For heart this earth is neither spherical nor flat
Last Line: Only rocks stay put, he thinks, folks like us live on the fly


YELLOW BEAK    Poem Text    
First Line: A man owns a green parrot with a yellow beak
Subject(s): Life; Parrots


YOU TAKE A TRAIN THROUGH A FOREIGN COUNTRY       
Last Line: You can almost hear the door again bang shut, the key grate in the %lock