Wednesday, November 28, 2012

To Fomalhaut

Knitted Cactus
—Photo by D.R. Wagner, Elk Grove

—Patricia Hickerson, Davis

evening in August
we sat on a boardwalk bench
staring out across the spread of sand
to an in-pouring of waves
on the beach at Pt. Pleasant
crowds surged behind us
feet slammed the wooden boards
skyrocketing rides wheeled upward
whizzing and roaring through the warm sky
echoed faintly by the musical tinkle
the merry-go-round
children calling out

never again…


—Patricia Hickerson

at sunset
she found herself
caught in a whirl of white
gauzy strands
ghosts of yesterday
closing in on her
she held her breath

the web danced around her
not to be taken seriously
the sun started down
in flight from day
she remembered a strong figure
standing immovable before her
she spoke to him
found him elusive
till he made a strange declaration
about herself
and him

it was the poetry of sun going down
red flares pierced a drift of clouds
she floated
without pitch or mold
hands over eyes
not to see what had happened
waiting for his hand held out
sick with wanting


—Patricia Hickerson

this isn’t a TV show
where teams of ghost hunters
wield their technological toys
inspect old houses
hear whimpers and whispers
the restless dead
orbs appear
spooks shoot across space
(or are they just vagrant balls of camera light?)

this is a real haunting
a man you’d like to forget
somehow he doesn’t go away
always there inside you
gnawing at your innards
a savage process that will wound you  


  Late Summer Flowers
—Photo by D.R. Wagner

—Ann Wehrman, Sacramento

oh, solitary one, Fomalhaut
lonely autumn star
what do you feel as time stands still
400 million years or more
in your rainbow-shrouded darkness
time to remember, digest, forgive
time spent alone
at the edge of the world

life proceeds
pleasure, pain tip scales right, left
you remain untouched, silent, alone
will you host new worlds someday
will planets spin around you
will we someday know
your surface skin, your fiery heart
your life-giving warmth
your inevitable cooling and death


—Ann Wehrman

you’re like that illustration
in the children’s book
the spindly imp, cackling with mischief
and I, the fairy princess, floating
in a boat of leaves

your legs are too skinny
gnarly and hairy as a goat’s
all over you’re skinny
your nose is too big
your eyes light up
as you twist a phrase
to make it mean something else
more delicious

send a spiral of energy
sparking up my spine
massage the lower back
of my skull
remove the tension 
behind my ears
so that I can really hear—
and I find myself laughing
although you’ve long gone

so I lean back
safe in my woven cup
let the current rock me
white water sparkling left and right
until you return, all shy
with your warm mouth puckering
and your ageless, wise hands


—Ann Wehrman

face snuggles into your neck
your cheek
I could stay there forever
skin touching skin

arms extend down your back
holding, held
body heavy, warm

flying, I
clamber on top
ride your back
dip, swerve as one
liberated from gravity

soar side by side
dance around, beneath
ride currents of air
Earth turns
we scream with delight


—Ann Wehrman

back curves
black hair tumbles
eyes half closed, she dreams
scent of warm grass fills her
grass easy, prickly
underneath her
cool, dense earth

she rests in the sun
on the campus lawn
unafraid, un-self conscious

on my ten-minute break
I watch her lie there
covet her nonchalance, youth
freedom to lie on the grass
in sun’s warmth

bones ache with winter’s pain
I tighten my apron
return to work
job pays part of the bills
diploma in my dresser drawer


Today's LittleNip:

—Patricia Hickerson

here I am
my pillow soft
the moon high and hot
it lights the open window
whitens my sheets
outlines my lips
I’m waiting for you
and your good-night kiss  



—Photo by D.R. Wagner