four words walk into a bar to decide if the Parti can surpass a Lone View into a Dale

There’s that
word again. It
comes to divide us, match
make no one inside the perfect
parti.

Next year
I will break free.
No more five line stanza
straitjacket to dictate my lone
holler.

I don’t
want to use that
word dale to describe this
morning as it foreshadows our
decline.

When you
walk faster than
you run, you know you’ve reached
the plateau where the final word
is view.

It’s all
code for making
time meet space for a drink
when the sun begins to sink so
early.

Because the Avon Street Fire, October 8, 1990

A bag
of pepitas
to sprinkle across fields,
a rustling in the copse alerts
you and

who else
to diagnose
these days as scars, nights more.
You ascend the hill alone, save
a bird.

Halos
getting lost in
translation shift too quickly to
measure.

There was
that fire 30
years ago and that fly
on the VP’s head that won the
the debate.

You keep
saying we all
have a fire story to
tell, this one’s yours. Who really owns
the flame?

Who knows
why she swallowed
the firefly, or who she
is. Only that now they have gone
missing.

Not the
torch’s fault, nor
the cardinal’s, nor its
nest. The man on the roof didn’t
bother

to check
for smoke before
climbing down. You didn’t
believe it could happen to you.
Lucky

to lose
nothing because
you had nothing to lose.
It took decades to learn how to
exhale.

First Two Days in October

Half a
lifetime in one
place more north than midwest,
still it’s the McIntosh apples
you crave.

28 years.

The weight
of his death, the
one who drove the U-Haul
truck for you, presses against your
lungs. Heart.

10 years.

Is this
the half you want
to be remembered for?
Empties removed, no need to be
replaced.

18 years (almost).

Counting
poems, runs, leaves
left on old elms in this
little city’s central park, this
one’s yours.

20 years (almost).

You can
call it northeast
corridor saudade, the
way you hold onto old New York
City

Subway
Metro cards just
hoping they won’t expire
before you return, ready to
stand clear

of the
closing doors. Get
ready for another
ride of your life. That ding dong chime
again.

Half a
lifetime living
a thousand miles from
the platform, the train, the gap, the
third rail.

28 years.

Even
if you did fly
back east this moment, would
there be any strangers left to
ride with?

This year!