Thursday, June 07, 2012


Bad Feather Day
—Photo by Katy Brown, Davis

—Patricia Hickerson, Davis

on a hot day in July
in the central valley
when it all hangs heavy
you can hardly move
when you’re burning up
you can’t speak,
you can’t eat
you can’t breathe

inside and out
you’re on fire
your skin dry as dust
wretched with wrinkles
hot to the touch
fever stokes your brain
can’t think

rip off your clothes
grab those ice cubes
lie under a tree
there might be a breeze
let the grass tickle your backside
cool your fingers, your palms
ice cubes
start chewing on them
let them slide down as they will
touch them to your throat
your nipples
your navel
between your toes
under your arms
between your legs

ice cubes


—Patricia Hickerson

her lips were two pink cubes
pressed together

she vowed never to open them
until Ms. or Mr. Right came along

she kept her lips cubed
year after year

her lips began to crack
and crumble

she died without ever parting her lips   


—Patricia Hickerson

eating oysters in Joe’s kitchen
east coast oyster
tint of sunrise on its back
ruffled ridge of shell
hard edge to protect the slime
slip the knife in, careful!

hands me a half shell
let it slide, Joe says
oyster pulp loosed from its root
head back, let it slide
plump and cool to the tongue

thanks, Joe
but Joe’s already gone
I can hear his shouts
from the shower he shares with Gianna
not about the oyster in his life
but the soft cool breasts of Gianna
how easily they slide into his mouth

Canada Goose
—Photo by Katy Brown

—Patricia Hickerson

you, you
who have set me on fire
like sunlight igniting the color blue
I’m now a passion tree
poems flaming along the branches
I’m all my own color
red hot
a new ignition of words
holding the lit match to the tree
you the ignition   


—Patricia Hickerson

I came to the party
to be with you, darlin’
you looking like a big ol’ baby
your pink shirt
skinned across your fat belly
matched your pink face
as though you’d been eating
tomatoes, radishes, plums
hot red peppers, all melted down
into a pink tint on your body
you blue-eyed baby in a pink shirt
I could eat you up
and I will!   


—Patricia Hickerson

she couldn’t come
to the party no matter what
no amount of music or liquor
could induce her to come
she heard her friends waiting
eagerly waiting for her to come
their voices urging her
their hands held out
reaching for her
to help her come
no, she couldn’t do it
just couldn’t come to the party
she dreamed of what it would be like
to come
to the party
how great she would feel if only
if only she could come
to the party
could let loose
something early on had frozen her
a scream, a head banging against the wall
so frightening as to make sure
she couldn’t come
couldn’t come
to the party


—Patricia Hickerson

I’m cold and
your heat rocks me
socks me
mocks me
locks me
you dear old fox
you’ve wounded me
where I longed to be
your big belly
my cushion against despair
your white beard
my notion of Santa Claus
grown kind and loving
not a scary thing
your hands holding mine
your lips grazing mine
your eyes cuddling me
stay with me, pal


Our thanks to today's Davisites: Pat Hickerson for her smokin' hot poetry, and Katy Brown for her photos of geese in McKinley Park—which have nothing to do with Pat's poems but gosh they're cool. Another Davis poet, Sibilla Hershey, has a new book of poetry from Primula Press, entitled The Bleeding Tree (with a forward by Davis Poet Laureate Allegra Silberstein). This perfect-bound book of poetry with illustrations is available on the Local Authors' shelf at The Avid Reader in Davis (617 2nd St.), and is beautiful. Sibilla is of Latvian descent; look for the Latvian in her new book.

I see The Avid Reader has opened a new location in Davis; now there are two stores within steps of each other, in addition to the Sacramento location at the old Tower on Broadway. Good to see an independent doing so well!

Also in the good news department, JoAnn Anglin writes that Arturo Mantecón, Co-founder (with Francisco Mantecón) of Los Escritores del Nuevo Sol/Writers of the New Sun, is one of three who have been nominated in the Translation category for a Northern Calif. Book Award for his translation of My Naked Brain: Selected Poems of Leopoldo Maria Panero, published by Swan Scythe Press of Sacramento. In addition Lorna Dee Cervantes' poetry collection, Ciento: 100 100-Word Love Poems, has been nominated in the poetry category, as well as Mary Mackey's Sugar Zone. For a complete list of nominees, go to and scroll down a bit. The award ceremony will be held this Sunday, June 10 at Koret Auditorium in San Francisco Main Library, 1pm.


Today's LittleNip:

—Patricia Hickerson

and goeth
as it slips its metal coil
of articulated prison tray
woe is the lonely ice cube
to goeth is to dieth  



Pigeon-Toed Goose
—Photo by Katy Brown