Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Out here,

             It is dangerous.

mad men inhabit the blue hour,

glittery fictions glide

In the crevice of shadow

comfortless as firedogs in the wind.


heat-cracked crickets

creep into our hair.

Erasure of Sylvia Plath's Sleep in the Mojave Desert from Crossing the Water

Friday, November 26, 2010

Wicked Expeditions - a found poem tribute

Wicked expeditions

        wild   bitter greens

the blistered brine     still lives in me.

I praise   wild

   bristly chicories.

I linger lost to blossom,

sap & seed.

Thank you, Dana Tommasino, for the essay at Narrative, Primal.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

As if from the Shipwreck we returned - A Neruda Cento

Climbing vines murmured as we passed.

The gray stones knew us - the wind

in the shadow. Between you and me

a new door opened.

All that we learned was of no use:

we emerged from the ocean

as if from the shipwreck we returned.

Everything carries me to you:

aromas, light, metals,

boats filled from within with black light,

there too I would like to let my blood sleep

against the devil's webs,

     against organized misery.

You have seen the same sky each day,

the same dark winter mud, the endless branching

of the plum trees and their dark-purple sweetness.

Night has fallen for you.

Perhaps at dawn we shall see each other again.


Cento Source Text: The Captain's Verses Pablo Neruda , 1952
Image: Fisherman at Sea by William Turner

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Searching for Goodbye

This saying good-bye on the edge of the dark

reminds me of all

that can happen to harm.

I'm going home:

in the blood in the bone over coffee ... a promise

grows richer;

the fog,. shifting, salty, thin,. comes closing in. ...

something survived

without shame,

lingered for hours.

Last night I awoke,


That I should say goodbye now

To these verses. That's how it always goes

After a few years. They have to get out.

I think of the path

Veering and halting;

of the shapes hands make ...

Source text for Cento from The Poetry Foundation:
Good-bye, and Keep Cold by Robert Frost
Good-Bye by Ralph Waldo Emerson
Movement Song by Audre Lorde
The Moose by Elizabeth Bishop : Poem Guide
The Whitsun Weddings by Philip Larkin : Poem Guide
The Fall of 1992 by Randall Mann
Eight Variations by Weldon Kees
Free Verses by Sarah Kirsch
Five Accounts of a Monogamous Man by William Meredith

Saturday, July 31, 2010


Follow this link to construct your own erasures online.

Friday, July 30, 2010

175 Borges

Hand red with the edge of sleep


like eight hundred years,

a sanatorium, a room

that was not his own.

He was blinded, bandaged

in the bottom of a well,

the slightest coolness

prickled, the promised day

partial to symmetries

his life

a ramshackle old house.

An erasure of page 175 from The Collected Fictions of Jorge Luis Borges, translated by Andrew Hurley

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Bonewhite light - A Plath Cento

Something else hauls me through air——

Listen: these are its hooves:

A bonewhite light

behind all things.

The low smokes roll from me like Isadora’s scarves.

A life baptized in no-life for a while,

the spirit

escapes like steam.

Tonight it has receded like a ship's light.

I can't get it out of my mind.


This is a cento constructed with lines from Sylvia Plath's poems from Ariel: Ariel, Elm, Fever 103, and poems from Crossing the Water: Insomniac, Last Words, The Surgeon at 2 a.m., Zoo keeper's Wife

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Smudges - an erasure

The first morning:

those first disquieting hours

trying to distract myself,

wandering, listening, wondering how

we still know less than nothing.

I never realized

how everything is permeated,

the heavy noontime air

alive with shimmers and mirages.

However much we didn't want to,

however little we would do about it,

we'd understood: we were going to perish

of all this, if not now, then soon, if not soon,

then someday.

I remember

starlings beneath the eaves,

carats of nightfall,

every sidewalk scribbled with hearts.

Source text: Tar by C.K. Williams.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Chromium Nebulae - an erasure

Mantras drift through sonic sculptures

twisting close to the shimmer

of harmonies, merge

with endlessly stretched silences,

sail past geological tones, laval

creaks and spiralling darkness suffused

with a sense of brooding. Soundscapes

abandon the melody

matrix. Eliptical orbits

of rhythm transcend.


An erasure of a page of reviews for Anthony Manning’s Chromium Nebulae

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Crescent of Silence is Brimmed - a Neruda collage

When I open the door of night,

the crescent of silence is brimmed.

It is midnight: all around me

death beats on a gong, black water

the screaming of birds in the rain.

Something shoves me toward damp houses, into dark

corners, into hospitals with bones flying out of the windows,

devoured by haze. All things that live

give some part of themselves to the air.

The big breathing encircles me

with its raddle of towering blossoms, mouths

with their teeth black at the root:

a kiss dusky with pitch.

Phrases and lines from Five Decades: Poems 1925-1970 Pablo Neruda, translated by Ben Belitt
Painting: The Water-Sprite and Ägir's Daughters by Nils Johan Olsson Blommér

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Paradise Lost: an erasure

Restore us, chaos

I invoke thy Song,

the vast in me is dark.

Nine times the Space that measures Day

and Night:

Let us not slip.

Let us rest if any rest can harbour there,



Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Five Ways of Looking at a Peregrine


In a forest of leafless ash,

all that stirs

is the wind and a peregrine.


The constellation that shimmered

when you were born

is as irretrievable as the peregrine's innocence.


The peregrine's grace

is a measure of feathers

in a minor key.


Two lovers are more than the sum of themselves.

They promise to honor the unknown they'll engender

as they honor the peregrine roosting in the shadows.


I do not know what to heed:

the hunger for silence,

the satiety of stillness,

or the merciful transience

of the peregrine.