Saturday, March 31, 2018

Love covers

Crucial to remember

Love covers
A multitude of sins.
Oh Peter
I rejoice in your wisdom
On this day
Before Easter
As I rejoice
Every year
Bur sometimes
So much
I forget
On a regular basis.
This is one thing.
Only one thing.
There are others
But this one
Is crucial
To remember

Friday, March 30, 2018

Clarity is...

"Clarity is just questioning having eaten its fill."   -Jenny Xi

Ah, the Buddhists
They know clarity
Is impossible.
We Christians often
Think otherwise.
The boy who heard
The children's sermon
From the pastor who sat
And told a story,
The children gathered
Around him.
What is it
The pastor said
That gathers nuts
Buries them
And has a long furry tale?
I know the answer is Jesus
Said the boy
But it sure sounds
Like a squirrel to me.
Is sometimes
A squirrel.


Monday, March 26, 2018

In my world


 In my world
Which is of course
Your world
Which is
Of course
The world
Of the woman
Who walks
Her German Shepherd
In front
Of my house.
The German Shepherd's world
By me
But still known
To the Chihuahua
On its short little legs,
Its body
Low to the ground.

Sunday, March 25, 2018

It begins

Another year with Molly the donkey. This year I had a front row seat.

Holy Week
Is underway.
With the walker
I got a front row seat
In close proximity
To Molly
The donkey.
She tolerated
Waving palms
We are marching
In the Light of Christ
In the Light of Christ.
She stood.
I could swear
She smiled.
She led the procession
Into the church.
I could swear
She smiled.
Was a vital role.

Saturday, March 24, 2018


Once again, time to learn to double-team.

So often.
We think it necessary
To go it alone.
It took me awhile
To learn
The two-head
It might be taught
On our mother's
On our father's
All too often
It isn't.
Here we are
Learning it
Here we are
On the learning curve.

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Sentinel geese

Spring, a time when the geese, who have practiced all winter, really take their post seriously.

It is time
For sentinel geese
To take up their posts
Feet wide
Necks stretched.
There's a nest there
Females hunkered down
We will never see
The eggs
If the sentinel goose
Has anything to say.
About it.

Monday, March 19, 2018


March 19. St. Joseph's Day.

His day usually falls
During Lent.
A reason to break
The Lenten fast
Bury him in the lawn
Facing the house
A quick sale
He will be paraded
Around the block.
He requires a position
Of honor.
Heaven knows
He didn't get it
In that stable
With his Son
On the cross.
He simply disappeared
But not today.
Not today.

Saturday, March 17, 2018


Bird niches

The juncos
Are still here
Even as the red wings
Have arrived,
Each has staked out
His own particular
The robins
Move in
More slowly,
It seems they wait
For winter birds
To move on.
I wonder
About bird niches,
One takes over
Where the other
Leaves off.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Change back

Today I would like to sit on the park bench and talk with Emily Dickinson. We would talk about writing. We would talk about what a very few words can do. Maybe we wouldn't say much at all. She would understand the very clutteredness of Lent. She would understand the irony, the almost sigh of relief when Easter comes.

Everyone it seems
Produces extra things
For Lent:
More words and poems
Fill the mailbox
Fill my head
Fill my heart
Connections become
Somehow imperative
In these forty days,
In this wilderness,
In this damned March snow.
It is as if
This is the only time
Anyone really pays attention
It’s Lent
Easter is coming.
Then it will be
Too late.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Mouse in snow

Part of the "animal in snow" series

Without the snow
It is impossible
To tell
Who went
Over the lawn.
Years ago
It was a mouse
Small footprints
Tail line
Trailed behind.

Monday, March 12, 2018


They are faithful as clockwork.

She says the hummingbirds
On May 1.
How do they know
How does she know
When to put out
The sugar water
So they will be fed
The flowers bloom,
They always arrive
On May 1
In Minnesota.
Maybe it's a day
Or two earlier

Sunday, March 11, 2018


The lake is still there.

I figure which place
I would like to visit
From the other side
Of the lake.
One of the
Ten Thousand
Minnesota claims.
This is not
Arrowhead Point
But Pickerel Bay.
Next to the Bluewater Channel.
The geography
From the good part
Of my childhood.
Before it was sold.
The lake
Is still there.
Arrowhead is part
Of Chippewa National Forest.
It is time
To return
To Pickerel Bay.
The lake
Is still there.

Saturday, March 10, 2018


Different things hold a couple together.

We share a taste
For brownies
No frosting.
Does not allow
True appreciation
Of the brownie
Powdered sugar
Is okay
But frosting
Absolutely not.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Best enemies

Bad decisions, good decisions.

They took us
At our word
No more
No less.
I suppose
We should be grateful.
They trimmed the red bud
So no branch
Touched the house.
It will touch
By June.
We are already
Almost out
Of Girl Scout cookies.
No more until
Next year.
I suppose
We should be grateful.
We are our own
Best enemies.

Thursday, March 8, 2018


Another Peterman catalog arrived in the mail this week. It is the stuff dreams are made of.

I read the catalog
From cover
To cover
When it arrives
In the mail,
Dream the dreams
It inspires.
I have bought
The dreams
Enough times,
Not many,
But enough
To keep
The catalog
In the mailbox.
When I grow up
I would like
To write copy
For Peterman.

Monday, March 5, 2018


In my family we all learned to drive in Lakewood Cemetery

We will drive north
Come spring,
Maybe summer,
Figure which plots
Walk through
The bird sanctuary
Named for
My great grandfather.
I hope to walk then.
We will see
Which birds
Have returned
Which birds
Have remained.
We all learned to drive
In the cemetery
Next door,
To park
Our wheels
Or out.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Oh, it's different now

I write about women because that is my experience, and I dare not generalize.

Oh, it's different now.
Women writers
Do not need to hide
Behind initials
Or even men's names
To be published
To be read.
It's different now.
It hides underground
With earthworms
But still
It has to emerge
Like rain-soaked ground
Won't allow it
Any longer.

Friday, March 2, 2018


I remember the parish foray I called "Adventures with Catharine." It seemed a good idea. I never did learn how to make mayonnaise.

Everyone has gifts.
Mine do not include
Years ago
I invited people
To show
Me their gifts.
The chef
Tried to teach me
She did not
It was
A worthy effort.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

If you chose

Thinking of Billy Graham lying in state at the Capitol

Where would
You have your body
Lie in state
For those to bow
Or weep
Or perhaps
Lay lilies
Throw roses
White or red?
If you chose
Where would it be?
Who would you want
In attendance?
What flowers
Would you choose?
What words
What words
What actions
Would say
Most of it
Or even a lot of it
E c h o i n g.