“the thin blue flame
Lies on my low-burnt fire, and quivers not”
—Samuel Taylor Coleridge, from “Frost at Midnight”

I get confused about red. Is it
a door, pair of jeans, or a flashing
light I want to guide me
toward the darkest day? Again, the longest night will stretch

into that moment
of optimism when all shrinking
is done and I can almost imagine
the view from the sun.


To panic about ice
yet to form, comments yet
to be made, technology
yet to break down,
a Coleridge poem printed

and not read
is to be most afraid
of how serendipity dances
across pavers—
cracked or not.

Post Away Girl

So afraid
of needles, she refuses 

the vaccine that might protect her
from the thing 

she fears
(and desires) most. 

She’s still willing
to risk the damage 

from a crash
so beautifully choreographed 

and strummed. Still
believes in Coleridge 

and his “willing suspension

of disbelief.”