National Poetry Month #5

Steeple River Faith


No need for a church

In a town with a river


Boys turn out fishing

And leave the ball fields


Empty: bleachers vacant

As pews on sunny afternoons


Reels of the faithful

Dance at the tavern


Honkey-tonk sermons

Tell them how to live


In songs that twang

Their innards while steeples


Hover over Sundays and

No one minds the call.


In a town like this

Anything could be fixed


Right down to the stone

Water river of the matter.

National Poetry Month #4

photo 2


The Tumbleweed


I am holding the tumbleweed over my head.

Below me, the Columbia River

Slides past Vantage— town, no town.

Far off, in Paris or Toulouse, my friends might take

The tumbleweed and shellac its thorny bits.

They would hang it from their ceilings

And imagine a cartoony, hopeful place

Where orbs were wound from wind and brush

Upon the butte where sage turned tinder,

And their wild friend chased the weed,

Her boots kicking dust, all the way to the river.