Monthly Archives: June 2013

White People’s Coup

The US Supreme Court said to minorities this week
you gays can marry

but the rest of y’all are breedin’ like flies
so we gonna fix it so you cain’t vote.

Why in thirty years white people gonna
be the new minority in the US of A.

Now that just ain’t gonna cut it.
Be damned if we just gonna sit here

and watch our sacred traditions and privileges and our wealth
be trampled on by so many niggras and wetbacks.

We rigged it so it don’t matter how many of you
vote anyway–hell, we lost the last election by a million votes and still kept the House.

So you gays go dance around and be happy and suck up a lotta news cycles
while we undo fifty years of civil rights struggle and bring back Jim Crow.

Now pass that bottle over heah. Did I evah tell you the one ’bout
what has eight legs and goes “ho-de-do! ho-de-do! ho-de-do!”

Side Yard

Someone saw a cougar in the parking lot of the medical school yesterday.

Today I ate a sour cherry from the tree in my side yard where there are no cougars.

The neighbor has somehow gotten
my trees to stop growing over his property without being too obvious about it.

On my lot we have trees gone wild.
On his every leaf gets picked up.

It’s like Shakespeare said, all the world is a stage and we all have our corner of it
where we strut and fret for an hour.

And pick cherries.

Looking Down

Sitting in my cubicle
(what an odd name,
like packaging for lamps
or a church ceremony for lost furniture,)
staring out the window down the side
of the steely clean bank tower –there, on the ledge below:
a red-tail hawk has taken a pigeon
and is doing what hungry hawks do to pigeons.

Nothing that interesting is going on
on my computer screen.
There the tired larks of industry
are singing of copper falling
and of bringing oil out of the Bakken
by rail in a great segmented black snake
to thread its way through the dapper wheat fields of eastern Montana
and down the Columbia gorge
to inflate the dark carbuncled eyes
of the new terminal in Vancouver.

I turn back to the hawk
who has finished his meal
and left a few bits
for the blackbirds to clean up shortly.
I hope we are as thrifty with
the overburdened treasure of the earth
waiting in Vancouver to go into our cars
and out our tailpipes–
but I know we won’t be.

Hooray, Hooray These Woman Is a Killin’ Me

“The only thing a skinny-legged woman is good for is to run get a big-legged woman.”

–bluesman Sonny Terry (1911 -1986)


morning commute
two lanes jammed beak to tail
birds in tight water


The spine of my street
wakes up one house vertebrae at a time.
Here a light on, there a dog bark,
across the street at the telephone building
a gate slams and a truck
starts its day crisscrossing
the corpus of the city.

I spend the day looking for faces,
not everyone’s work face
but the ones that say,
in a moment of quick freshness,
like bread from the oven,
“this is my grandson,”
from the parking lot attendant
and “it’s nice to see you again,”
from the pie lady.

I found a dead hawk
in my street yesterday morning
lying belly up, wings spread,
already food for fellow blackbirds.
The space around it let cars
through, but in a different way,
so the hawk had time
to adjust her eyes to the new horizon
and take one last look around.

Chameleon Kid

President Obama,
Chameleon Kid,
shape shifting
constitutional scholar
who prosecutes more people
for espionage than all other
American presidents combined,

wearing your expedient reticence
like another college degree,
something you learn, like torts,
on the way to the top of the class.

You cannot blame the opposition
for your repression of whistleblowers,
your pervasive spying on us,
your murder by drone of Americans.

Even the ruthless Kennedys
ate their sorrows and quoted Aeschylus
to turn the raven on the shoulder
into the eagle of grounded hope.

When will you eat your sorrows
and become a man for our season?

An absent father does not excuse
an endless stay in the shade
of the enemy within.