Sunday, April 15, 2007

Our Bravery in the Face of It

Photo by Jane Blue

—Jane Blue, Sacramento

Every missive from my sister is a weather report.
But how are you, really?

The sky is busy catching the sun's rays
on its castled clouds, hiding and revealing the sun.

Lichen-encrusted limbs on the sidewalk,
a nest cast out of a tree, half done or half undone.

What am I? Half done or half undone?

Ash-blond grasses streaked with a little gray
are wound into the walls of a basket, or a chignon.

It seems a robin's nest, or an attempt at one,
with just a twig at the bottom where there should be mud.

The robin, liking water, shores up a tight little ship.
We all have a good bit of mud

woven into our lives, to remind us
of what we've weathered. Did the nest cushion

two or three little robin's-egg-blue ovals last year,
or was it just a failure in the stormy spring?

She thinks sometimes that her life is a failure.
No life is a failure, it is life. Think of your bravery

in the face of it. Eye-blue forget-me-nots
look up from the lawns. Yellow oxalis—a weed

covers empty lots like sunshine. We are weeds,
my dear, like turf daisies and dandelions

and the pale lavender stars of wild onions just beginning.

(from Turf Daisies and Dandelions, Rattlesnake Press 2006)


Thanks, Jane! Jane Blue will be reading next Saturday, April 21 at 2 PM at the McClatchy Library on 22nd Street in Sacramento (between U and V Sts.). For more about Jane and her poetry, go to and find her new page in the Rattlechaps section.


Medusa encourages poets of all ilk and ages to send their POETRY, PHOTOS and ART, as well as announcements of Northern California poetry events to (or snail ‘em to P.O. Box 762, Pollock Pines, CA 95726) for posting on this daily Snake blog. Rights remain with the poets. Previously-published poems are okay for Medusa’s Kitchen, as long as you own the rights. (Please cite publication.)

SnakeWatch: Up-to-the-minute Snake news:

Journals: Rattlesnake Review #13 is available at The Book Collector; next deadline is May 15. The new VYPER #6 (for youth 13-19) will be out the week of April 16; next deadline is Nov. 1. Snakelets #10 (for kids 0-12) is available; next deadline is May 1.

Books/broadsides: April’s releases are SnakeRings SpiralChap #7 from D.R. Wagner: Where The Stars Are Kept, and littlesnake broadside #33: Swallowed By This Whale Of Time by Ann Menebroker. Both are now available at The Book Collector. SpiralChaps are $8; broadsides are free. Or contact for ordering information. Coming in May: Playing Favorites by Ron Tranquilla; littlesnake broadside by Julie Valin; Rattlesnake Interview Series #2 by B.L. Kennedy: Malik.

Something new: Rattlesnake Interview Series with B.L. Kennedy is now available (free) at The Book Collector (or contact Kathy Kieth). #1 is Ann Menebroker.

Also: check out the Rattlechaps Chapbook Series page on the website! We've started generating separate pages for each rattlechapper/spiralchapper; scroll down through the list of books we've published and click on the names that are in red. That should lead you to a separate page for each of them, including photos, bios, poems, contact info—and more to come, once we get them all up and running. Sweet!