Thursday, March 22, 2012

Casting Our Nets

—Enhanced Photo by D.R. Wagner, Elk Grove

—B.Z. Niditch, Brookline, MA

of dividing worlds
into the murder
of silence
when words
do not swear in
our language
to warrant
on the life of a poet
who strikes nature
to defend us
for imagination
by courting love,
exhibiting art,
mindfull of night music
prophecy and psalms
feigning death,
when chaos threatens
our enlightenment
we lean back
to cast the net
as fishers
from the aboriginal sea.


—B.Z. Niditch

Some earth has fallen
along the snow banks
by grackles' flecked wings,
waters move on pine combs
from grassy tall blades,
and nature's step child
draws out the combs
for her once pinned hair
against the calls of wind
out of sight
by a rented bicycle
of her lanky twin brother
whose voice just broke
on an apple core
and sings a French tune
with a sad discourse
of a past life
hearing feral cats
capturing bread
left for small birds
on the dusty footpaths
of a white glazed road
as each flake slumbers
on the common ground
memory doubles
on frozen second natures
leaving midwinter branches
blinded from
a dispersed storm,
two encircled shadows
skip through the woods
breathless with amazement.


—B.Z. Niditch

Distilled rain drops
along the pulse
of the pedaling river
feeling self-conscious
of being a year older
than the stray lab
hiding in the grassy banks
on the Cambridge side
of last winter's numbness
who reappears
for broken bits of bread
by purling grey waters
my leafy eyes
close frosty silences
from trembling chills
of a vacant earth
with streams of birdsong
on thousand-year evergreen.


—B.Z. Niditch

the sandlots
will open
near clubhouses
and all records
with new papers
written down
and numbers on uniforms
like blades of gold
sewn on for posterity
and the youngest
with granny and dad
will make their way
toward stadiums
consumed with joy
as the American pastime
after spring training
arrives on the scene
in search for competition
and sport.


—B.Z. Niditch

You carried me
and your sax
down five flights
of a fire escape
in a tenement
when I was a child
took me to hear
Ella Fitzgerald
and Armstrong
in the Village
up town
to a jam session
contending with a kid
with a heart murmur
through snowy streets
hearing beautiful
foreign tongues
and people reading
newspaper print
from right to left
causing us to stop
the music
at the Savoy
you rattle my first song
with me at the piano.


—B.Z. Niditch

In the redolent
snow kisses
the relief muted
at a posthumous season
incognito you carry
your sax
by a surprising storm
and drang
stiffened by fishers
of buried ice
your carmelized socks
fallen in liquid silence
by your wet shadow
consumed by sunshine
over the long steppes
traced by a red scarfed
poet glazed
by falling birds
on an absent sky


Thanks to Chef Extraordinaire and SnakePal B.Z. Niditch for today's poems, casting his net all the way from Massachusetts, and to our own D.R. Wagner for the pix, cast all the way from Elk Grove. Read more about B.Z. at And of course D.R. is always readable at

Word on the street is that tickets to the Philip Levine reading at American River College (7pm, June 2, $25) are selling out fast. To get yours, go to Levine is, as you know, U.S. Poet Laureate; read more about him at His reading at ARC will be as the Keynote Speaker for ARC's SummerWords, their creative writing event that runs from May 31-June 3. For info about that, go to and click on May 31 on the calendar.


Today's LittleNip: C.S. Lewis put it, there is no such thing as an ordinary person. Each person you sit next to on the bus is capable of extraordinary horrors and extraordinary heroism.

—Davis Brooks, New York Times [for the complete article, go to]



Sushi Plates
—Photo by D.R. Wagner