Thursday, April 18, 2019

A poem in response to Dorothy Allison's essay: A Question of Class.

For Dorothy.

Courage, humor and love
Simply disappear
In the politics of They.

Despair must be lived
In a world that despises the weak.

They who hold dominion
Overcome and deny.

The impulse to forget/remember
Those who disappear into:
One pair of eyes
One set of hands
--Heard by no one.

Our tears form the ground notes
In a howling cadence of
What will not change 
In the world of We.

Courage soul: learn to wield.

~Karen Joyce
2019

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Spring: A Work in Progress

You are not broken - you are part of a whole universe
Humanity.

The fear of losing ground
Baseless, vulnerable and afraid.

Looking out the patio door

I am lost in the unity of the wind, green freeness,
Trees, my father

A continuum.

Plugging in, topsy-turvy
An angel on my shoulder

Stay in place, safe exploring gentleness, grace.

~Karen Joyce


Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Perfection is never wasted in the moment - for those who are grieving still

Perfection Wasted

And another regrettable thing about death
is the ceasing of your own brand of magic,
which took a whole life to develop and market --
the quips, the witticisms, the slant
adjusted to a few, those loved ones nearest
the lip of the stage, their soft faces blanched
in the footlight glow, their laughter close to tears,
their tears confused with their diamond earrings,
their warm pooled breath in and out with your heartbeat,
their response and your performance twinned.
The jokes over the phone. The memories
packed in the rapid-access file. The whole act.
Who will do it again? That's it: no one;
imitators and descendants aren't the same.

--John Updike

Yin Yang


Breathe 2017


Bereavement 

Just for today I'm going to treat myself with kindness

A lot easier said then done

How did we get here?

B r e a t h e.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Why are they all leaving...

Belated Bereavement

Just for today I'm going to treat myself with kindness

A lot easier said then done

How did we get so hyper-critical

Thank god for SSRIs

Seriously.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


The Armadillo
by Elizabeth Bishop
For Robert Lowell

This is the time of year
when almost every night
the frail, illegal fire balloons appear.
Climbing the mountain height,

rising toward a saint
still honored in these parts,
the paper chambers flush and fill with light
that comes and goes, like hearts.

Once up against the sky it's hard
to tell them from the stars—
planets, that is—the tinted ones:
Venus going down, or Mars,

or the pale green one. With a wind,
they flare and falter, wobble and toss;
but if it's still they steer between
the kite sticks of the Southern Cross,

receding, dwindling, solemnly
and steadily forsaking us,
or, in the downdraft from a peak,
suddenly turning dangerous.

Last night another big one fell.
It splattered like an egg of fire
against the cliff behind the house.
The flame ran down. We saw the pair

of owls who nest there flying up
and up, their whirling black-and-white
stained bright pink underneath, until
they shrieked up out of sight.

The ancient owls' nest must have burned.
Hastily, all alone,
a glistening armadillo left the scene,
rose-flecked, head down, tail down,

and then a baby rabbit jumped out,
short-eared, to our surprise.
So soft!—a handful of intangible ash
with fixed, ignited eyes.

Too pretty, dreamlike mimicry!
O falling fire and piercing cry
and panic, and a weak mailed fist
clenched ignorant against the sky!