26 February 2009

Little Ballerina

Pink toes.
Tights pulled too high,
Loose with wrinkles,
Smile up to the window.

I'm a ballerina!
Pointing to prove
At her dancing top,
Touching her tiptoes.

Look at me!
Tutu curtsy
And a shuffle spin.
I'm a ballerina!

It was ballet class tonight.

24 February 2009

Grade School Basketball

Grade school basketball
Is choreography synchronized and rehearsed
But performed to music you've never heard before.
It's your favorite song
In a language you don't understand.
It's rolling through the stop
As you catch the cop
From the corner of your eye.
It's shooting at the wrong goal
With a particularly unembarrassed smile.
It's asking the referee,
"Who do I guard?"
It's both teams in the same color
And guessing who tipped the ball off the flagpole.
It's aunties on the court
And little brother sitting on the players' bench.
It's a stepping stone to knowing,
"This is not my kind of game."

I've been [poorly] refereeing some 5th grade basketball games. This is taken from observations of the games and retrospection on my officiating... skill.

19 February 2009

Low Earth Orbit

A slow ascent above the sky
At 280 miles a minute.
The continents and seas trail back
In hypersonic grace.
The push of icy wet oxygen
Thrusting us just above the clouds

If we’re lucky.

The rocket’s empty lungs fall away
Heaving us up to the edge
Of gravity’s confining grip.
Not quite to the cosmos,
But not quite earthmen anymore.
Lucky to be so insignificant.

Just a scrap of steerable debris.

I made some revisions to an earlier piece.

18 February 2009

My Daughter Loves the Stars

Tonight she was looking up at the sky as we were driving home and she said, "Daddy, the stars are coming with me." That got me thinking.

17 February 2009

15 February 2009


Learning is chocolate,
Each fact a handcrafted confection.
It's two scoops of ice cream
That you can't not eat
When you shouldn't
Have another bite.

Ideas are rainbows,
Glimmering every color twice.
They are the soft curves
Of natural beauty.
They are swimming
With dolphins at your wet fingertips.

Knowledge is a rippling richter wave
Rumbling through all the earth.
It is the flaming fusion
In the sparkle of the stars.
It is moving parts and solid state.
It is worth every thought.

I got the idea for this from a film I watched about learning differences. It was a kind of tribute to Bill Cosby's late son, Ennis, who was dyslexic. Anyway, a girl, maybe about 10-12 years old who had gone through school thinking that she was unable to learn happened across some good teachers who figured out how to teach this girl. The point to all this is that when the girl started to learn, she did not want to stop for a second. She said, with a huge, giggly smile, "Learning is ice cream!"

14 February 2009

This photograph is the inspiration for these thoughts. It's from Linda's pic-a-day blog.

This is very much incomplete. But I am exhausted.

A home will
Eventually fall into forgotteness.
The wooden joists
Splinter off into breezes and rain.
The doors will
Fall away from their frames.
The floors will
Turn to grayed dust ruts.

13 February 2009

Scrap of Logic

Is a geometric ray.
A point of origin,
And a direction.
A straight rail
An electric flesh brain
Sraight out
Staight ahead
Straight through.
Point after consecutive point,
One leading to another
To the next and again
In a perfect plot
Of graphable order.

Natural Gas

And you thought this was going to be
A crude poem
Saddled on a rancid pun.

It almost was.

Low Earth Orbit

A slow ascent above the sky
At 280 miles a minute.
Lucky just to get above the clouds,
Luckier still
To become
Just another scrap of steerable debris.

11 February 2009

Incidental X-Ray

Pulsing through it all
In penetrating undulations,
But silenced in stealth.
It can come from
Any everywhere.

An accidental invention.
Just another wavelength.
It stops when we say.

An astronomic afterthought,
Spinning out a billion miles
And a million billion more
In escape
From a crushed oblivion.

It exists just because
Something else was,
And then,
Was not.
But it still has
A million miles left.

Because the tech
Switches, dials, and knobs
Behind the heavy glass
While I sit very still.