Thursday, June 08, 2023

Tasting the Day

—Poetry by Nolcha Fox, Buffalo, WY
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy 
of Nolcha Fox
I’m inside

the arrival of a woman
who walks through a door
of a house. All the doors
are the same. She walks
through a room like every
room in the house. She
crawls out a window, she
doesn’t know which one, every
window in every room
is the same. She walks
around the house, a house
just like every house
on the block. I am inside
the arrival of a woman
who walks through
the door of the wrong
house. She is lost. I am
that woman.

(Inspired by “Index” by Kell Connor)



So intent on capturing
this moment with her camera,
the flowers springing
forth from cracks
in shades of pink and red,
she didn’t see the gutter water
rushing faster through the alley,
threatening to sweep her up.
She didn’t see brick cliffs
on either side move closer,
threatening to crush her.
Her photo was a hit on Facebook,
capturing what she ignored.


I taste the sky.
It is metal singing
sonnets in my nose.
It is velvet petals
melting into clouds.
It is oven heat
and cloves and salt.
I hear the sky.

I need a butterfly net

to capture words
that flit and flutter
out my mouth
before I know
what I said.


Drunk, he staggers
from the bar
of chocolate melting
into honey as the bees
swarm, storm, and hail,
rain that drains across
the trail derailed,
a train of thoughts
I cannot follow
through the mud.


I love the quaint streets, folks that know me,
mountain shelter, quiet life,
but most of all I love this bar,
the place that I call home.

This dusty town is dark and small,
neighbors are such gossips.
Keep the mountains, give me sea,
I wish I didn’t live here.
If I don’t find my lazy man,
I’m home to Mom without him.

Bill, the barkeep shakes his head
and hands the phone to me.
I know who’s on the other end,
I know just what she’ll say.
“Don’t bother, Bill, she’s going home,
another beer for me!”

(after “I could not stop for Death”
by Emily Dickinson)

Because I could not stop for caffeine or for Death, he kindly stopped at the local coffee drive-through. For me, he ordered an Americano with heavy whipping cream. He took his black. And why nobody commented on the carriage? Well, it is Wyoming, after all. I paid for the coffees, but just for ourselves, and Immortality had to pay for her own. She was miffed. We slowly drove, he knew no haste (plus he didn’t want to get another ticket, or his license would be suspended). And I had put away my labor over that embroidered bed curtain. And my leisure too, for his civility. I was losing at croquet anyway. We passed the high school during recess, where children strove in the wrestling ring. Hey, Death, can we watch them for a few minutes? The future Hulk Hogan may be rolling around in the dust. Oh, you’re not a wrestling fan? We passed the fields of gazing grain. If they wore sunglasses, they wouldn’t have to squint. We passed the setting sun, or rather he passed us, that’s how slow we were driving. You’d think Death would have to hurry to pick up more people, but no. The dews drew quivering and chill. Good grief, if I knew I was going to die, I would have brought a coat. For only gossamer, my gown my tippet only tulle. What, I don’t need a coat over a shroud?  Well, Death, maybe you have a body temperature, but I was cold when I was alive, too. We paused before a house that seemed a swelling of the ground, the roof was scarcely visible, the cornice in the ground. Death, if you took a little time off, you could repair your dilapidated shack. How do you even get in the door? Since then, 'tis centuries and yet feels shorter than the day. No, more like night, considering how slow this carriage is moving. I first surmised the horses' heads were toward the barn instead of eternity. Eternity? Really, Death, can you speed it up a little?

A park bench

won’t divulge the stories heard upon his lap:
quarrels, gossip, farewells, first loves,
wisdom, pureness lost.
He listens without judgment,
and when he’s all alone,
communes with trees and lake and lawn,
guards sun and moon across the sky,
at peace with everything.


Here in desert isolation,
stars abandon consolation,
sleep behind a cloudy curtain.
bramble bushes scar my skin.

Stars abandon consolation.
Far from home, I
sleep behind a cloudy curtain.
Footprints vanished, no return.

Far from home, I
languish, no desire, just despair.
Footprints vanished, no return,
held to desert isolation.


You are a wild child,
dancing to “Wake Up
Little Suzie” on my
head. In high heels.
Before sunrise, you
show your best moves.

Please turn on the coffee
before you get me
out of bed.

Today’s LittleNip:

You’ve come so far

since you came here,
you really are a marvel.
You’ve learned to sit
and come and stay.
You love to play
and cuddle.
You’ll get a treat
and top reviews

if you don’t poop on the floor again.

—Nolcha Fox


Our thanks to Nolcha Fox for her fine work today! It's Thursday already, and there are plenty of NorCal poetry events to keep you busy! Click on Medusa's UPCOMING NORCAL EVENTS ( for details about these and other future poetry events in the NorCal area—and keep an eye on this link and on the Kitchen for happenings that might pop up during the week.


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