(for Melissa)

Even in the quietest moments
there is no mistaking
the love of a mother for her child.

When the son of my niece was diagnosed with bilateral sensorineural hearing loss, she and her husband did not miss a beat. At less than six-months-old, her son now wears hearing aids. A fierce advocate for both her son and her daughter, it’s clear that she would climb any mountain to seek what’s best for both of them. This past weekend, friends and family joined her in the Buffalo Walk4Hearing to raise funds for national awareness and educational programs through Hearing Loss Association of America.

What Is Nine Hundred Miles? ~ prosery

What Is Nine Hundred Miles?

What is nine hundred miles to a man when family is a short flight away, or a drive in a day? Is there separation when connection is as simple as a message, a call, or FaceTime? What is the separation when the difference is measured in split seconds?

The heart will guide where the mind cannot see. And so the man made the move. Both baggage and cartage. A relocation of nine hundred miles to be with the woman he loved, loves still, and to know happiness. He learned that nine hundred miles is actually eighteen hundred miles, for the heart must always return. He has traveled that distance many times over the years, so that he could know the two sides of happiness. So it is, and will always be, for crucial to finding the way is this: there is no beginning or end.

This is my response to Prosery: Finding Your Way, the prompt from Merril at dVerse ~ Poets Pub. With Prosery, the challenge is to write a piece of flash fiction with a 144-word limit. Included in the bit of prose is to be a complete line from a poem. For this prompt, the line to be included is from “Map to the Next World,by Jo Harjo.

“Crucial to finding the way is this: there is no beginning or end”
                                                                                                    – Jo Harjo

I’ve met the additional challenge of hitting the 144-word mark, exactly.

July will be nine years since I moved from New York to be with Bonnie. We were married three years ago, but there have been many trips back to Buffalo to visit family.

the journey ~ found poem

the journey
a gift of love, life, and Mother Nature

to write of hope
of survival, like a flame
to have mattered is a joy

to become a better vessel
letting go of illusions
learning how to say goodbye

tomorrow is an uncertainty,
rebirth an existence beyond this one
more than belief… the Design

brought into manifestation
part of the One, still part of the One
the fruits of our learning

Creation’s understanding
the One is All… separation
through loss or death is illusion

seeing both sides of life
we know how deep love goes
in the end, choosing the way forward

learn from living
even more, dare to dream
love is always enough

This is a found poem. I hesitate to say it is a blackout poem, because I would not dream of blacking out one word from its source. Sue Vincent’s health is failing, and with no way of knowing when her time will have run its course, she has put into words her thoughts on life and what it will mean to be gone. The full body of that message, The Last Post? can be found at The Silent Eye. By no means is my poem meant to be a summation of her words. It is inspired by her message.


In the Beginning ~ haibun

The prompt for Haibun Monday 30/03/2020: Snapshots of Our Lives, from Kim at dVerse Poets Pub, is to write a haibun that tells the story behind a poem from our personal archives. This is the story behind How I Knew I was a Poet, my video poem from 2017.

In the Beginning

I first visited YouTube in 2006, and it wasn’t long before I was making videos of my own, including video poetry. As time went on, I joined other video sharing sites. In 2010, one of the vloggers I followed was planning to travel from Chicago to Boston on his motorcycle, and he asked those along his route about meeting up for coffee. I took him to see Niagara Falls, and offered a room and a bed for the night. He told me to visit him any time, offering the use of his spare room.

The following year, we planned a meetup that included four other vloggers. Two of them also were from Chicago, one was from Washington state, and the fourth was from Missouri. Over several days, we visited a blues club, took a boat tour of Chicago’s architecture along the Chicago River, and visited the Green Mill Jazz Club (the home of slam poetry) and The Poetry Foundation. Everyone had a good time, and I had some interesting conversations about poetry at The Poetry Foundation with, little did I know, the woman who would one day be my wife.

I moved to Missouri in 2012.

whispering verses
witnessed by poets
in the beginning

Image: The Poetry Foundation, in Chicago

A Day Like Any Other

A Day Like Any Other

With like minds, we scorn this greeting card holiday,
yet my mind still turns to you, a turn made
nearly every moment since that first turn
on the path that brought our hearts together,
since the first words I wrote for you, words
I would write on any day, even this.

My un-Valentine’s Day poem.

And more words of LOVE.

Notes, while driving with a love supreme


Notes, while driving with a love supreme
    (random riffs recorded on the road)

Layer upon layer of clouds holding
a snow that never materialized
deliver a gray light,
but there’s joyful anticipation at the start
of this long drive home like a pulse
of contentment. A love supreme.

Piano pulls me forward with resolve,
when Coltrane comes in
pursuing that love
as drums urge me onward.

Like a psalm rolling through me,
clouds give way to blue sky,
the hint of home drawing me closer
on this long cold drive.