Now That the End Is in Sight

Our shared strength wanes–
vaxxed, we talk about the end
like a peek of sunrise through
the blinds. Yes, beyond
winter depression we just had
depression and didn’t know
it. Spring sun’s out and
we are outside drinking.
Kids graze by like
the virus never happened.
But I was there. I was
strong. Even as a kid,
finding my father crumpled
on the floor and convulsing,
eyes rolled to the back of his
head during his stroke,
I calmly dialed 911
and waited until the
ambulance arrived, and
I was fine the whole time.
But when my sister
screeched her SUV’s tires
into our driveway, I let
go. A lifeboat. I ran
into her arms, crying,
not knowing how to say
anything I wanted to say,
and she just held me
and said it’s going
to be okay– but she
didn’t know. This past
year, I’ve held you to tell
you it’s going to be okay,
but how could I know?
Now that the end is in
sight, we wait for the light,
wilting in its arms to meet it.

(originally published in Capsule Stories, Spring 2021)

Descendant of the Big Bang

Self-absorption has turned me
into a selfish alien. On Earth,

we live in isolation
waiting for the cosmic dawn

to return in a brilliant explosion
that would rock this rock like

a great song
performing on its uppermost

stage, all of my being
expanding like a flower

until the whole universe
opens wide

like a Great Eyeball.
Our role will be to find

inexpressible
connection– a ring

of stars passing rings
of fire, each a small

cluster of blue petals.

(originally published in The Subnivean, Winter 2021)

Third Anniversary (During COVID-19)

                        After Mikko Harvey


I don’t
want you
to be
scared. Maybe
thinking of
a cat
would help.
Have you
seen
the video of
the one
waddling into
the ocean
to be with
her friend?
She swims
onto his
head
and they stay
afloat.
When they’re done,
she beelines
through sand
to the towel
he set up
on the
beach,
and he pours
sun-warmed
water to
heat her up
before he rubs
her down.
Sometimes we
have to remember
the world before.
We don’t know
what’s going
to happen.
Kingsford and DQ
are especially
tender
at a time
like this.
What
are we
supposed
to do?
Not pet
them?
Right now,
DQ is snoring
on the blue
blanket of
the futon
without
a worry.
Our first
three years
have been
that soft.
I hope
this passes
soon.
Until then
we will squeeze
each other–
holding
our cats
close, all of
us afloat.

(originally published in Pendemic, Spring 2020)