Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Weavers Continue

—Photo by Cynthia Linville, Sacramento

—Taylor Graham, Placerville

Call it poor hygiene—
the old barn hasn't been mucked out
in years. Just take a sniff, it still smells
of the under-parts of horse.
Nor have time and weather been its friends.
Cobwebs dawdle in corners,
the first storm of the season waits
in ambush—termination dust.
Don't buy this place, just let it be.
In every warping board and rusty nail
is a secret text
the land writes mysteriously.


—Taylor Graham

The piglet on the young girl's lap
sits thinking as she takes her nap,
and counts crosses by the road
where travelers laid down their load.
Humans wonder at each cross.
Pork chops know that life is loss.
The piglet on the young girl's lap
sits thinking as she takes her nap.


—Taylor Graham

As sunlight dwindles in the west
the hawk recalls an oak-tree nest.
Oaks are all uprooted now.
No good-mornings, calf to cow.
Arthritic in every beam,
the old barn shudders in dream
as sunlight dwindles in the west.
The hawk recalls an oak-tree nest.

—Photo by Cynthia Linville

—Taylor Graham

Our trickster puppy, slipping out the door
shadowing or shall we call it
chasing sheep of late September?
Not a fleecy cloud in blue;
the sky so noncommittal,
like ancient gods named Thor or Loki.
What can we count on
when there's scratching at the door?
What can we count on?
Like ancient gods named Thor or Loki,
the sky so noncommittal—
not a fleecy cloud in blue
chasing sheep of late September
shadowing. Or shall we call it
our trickster puppy slipping out the door?


—Taylor Graham

Here we've all come together,
poets with words to change the world
for good. And here you are

out-of-the-blue yelling at that
girl—for what? Her words. Were they
too soft or subtle for you?

Not enough tinder-spark, or smoke?
No explosion, riot, blowing
the old bad world to smithereens?

She's walking away now,
her words packed carefully back
into the satchel of her mind,

ready for the winds of change
to carry beyond
anywhere your yelling could reach.


—Taylor Graham  

A length of line, a knot, a word. With ancient
craft, she weaves a net to hold our night-sky
starry in its place: Arcturus, Sadr's swan-space.
    Through a loom's warp, the second
shuttles her spindled yarn—live, grazing sheep
for fleece; an old shepherd-dog (the woof).
                     The third—he weaves
a frock of all this, so finely-textured of history,
roses, star-spume rivers over rock.
     Sometimes, one will leave the loom
unattended. With a key-tap, another of the three
sneaks into the room
                   and shifts the pattern: a slight
switch in color-scheme, image, theme—as any
true weave requires one small glitch,
        a nick, a crevice to let sky's-
light shine through; a loose end, half-rhyme,
fingerhold for metaphor, a farther flight.


Our thanks to Cynthia Linville for today's pics, taken at San Francisco's Musee Mechanique. Cynthia will be reading tonight at Verse on the Vine in Folsom with Poetica Erotica (featuring Cynthia, Lytton Bell, and Shawn Aveningo). Thanks also to B.Z. Niditch for the LittleNip, and to Taylor Graham for the poems. TG is writing to our Seed of the Week as she fiddles with our current form, and she and Katy Brown and D.R. Wagner continue to talk to each other through their poetry—and we are all the richer for it! Well-published poet (Judy) Taylor Graham is a long-time SnakePal, and it's always a pleasure to post her poems; we've been doing it since the early days of Medusa, when she was one of the first of local poets to take a chance on this Gorgon and this wonky bloggy website.

Taylor Graham and Cynthia Linville are also among the many poets whose work appears in the new Ophidian—that's right! It's finally done, and can be seen at  Our thanks to Richard Hansen for his beautiful design, and for finishing it up so close to his surgery

You can also see Taylor Graham tonight at Poetry Off-the-Shelves, a monthly read-around that takes place in Placerville. This is a busy night in area poetry, with Poetry Off-the-Shelves, Poetry With Legs at Shine Cafe (featuring Laverne Frith and Dale Pendell), and Verse on the Vine. You'll have to make a choice, but you can't lose either way with our fine area poetry! As always, see the blue board at the right for all the details.


Today's LittleNip:

—B.Z. Niditch

Brother of flame
remembers you
to mourn the past,
sister of fire
puts a wreath
for the future for us
on an unknown field
called poetry. 



 —Photo by Cynthia Linville
[See for more about
San Francisco's Musee Mechanique]