Phantom Fingers


I cannot have your phantom fingers
On the nape of my neck,
Rolling over my earlobes,
Running parallel lines down my spine.
I have responsibilities.
I have schedules, calendars, deadlines.
Your hands, and their lingering indentations,
insinuations, and general implications,
need to find time in the aforementioned schedule
when I can devote the necessary mental energy
to reveling in their phantom touch.
As it stands, they are an annoyance,
a reminder that I was more agreeably occupied.
Now I have work to do.
I cannot afford to be distracted
By the ghostly sensation of pleasant pressures.
This is me, not being distracted.
Not being tempted.
Not remembering.
Am I succeeding?
I am not.



I feel we created emojis
Because there was no concrete way of ensuring
A smile reached its intended target.
That a personal look
Would not be absorbed by the general populace.
That something precious
Would get tarnished by intruding eyes.
I’m smiling at you.
Far easier to attach a round face to a number,
Send it around the world,
Up into space,
Through science and technology and thousands of tiny metal bits,
Just to avoid any confusion
As to the subject of my grin.
Don’t you think? 😉

Process: The Halloween Poem


Every year I write a Halloween poem – most of the time I try to write a funny poem. When I was in college, I even wrote some performance Halloween poetry (which wasn’t that bad – I should try to find where I stored those).

Anyway, when I was working on this year’s poem, I got into a good rhyming flow, right up until this point:

I waited there so patiently
Out on the grassy hill
But not a soul came near to me
The air was light and still

So far, so good, even if I wasn’t a fan of the fourth line. I had a plan for where I thought this poem was going. It was going to tie into my being abroad. The original title for this poem was “Indifferent Spirits,” because I felt a real disconnect on Halloween. Normally I’m good at finding a spiritual connection on All Hallow’s Eve, but not tonight.  This poem was originally going to involve a bunch of ghosts wandering by, speaking Japanese and wondering what I kept talking to them in English.

The rhyme suggested a different path, and because I didn’t plot out this particular poem I followed. When it turned out the narrator was dead already (what a twist!) I realized that I had wanted to tell a very different story than a funny miscommunication piece.

The last line was a tough one, because my brain really wanted me to end on a scary note, not a funny one. The last four lines were to culminate in something like “There is no pleasure greater than/ a death on Halloween.” I thought this entirely too dark for my desire. While I wasn’t going to change the angle of the poem, I also didn’t want to end it on such a strong, morbid note. Better to go with the angle of time and Halloween, since I think that is what resonates more with a soul than the idea of accumulating more souls.

My brain was upset at this, because it was a really good rhyming couplet. But first thoughts are not always the best thoughts. I try to limit editing when doing a flow poem, but I think the writer has the ultimate authority to step in when tone takes a sharp left turn. Especially when its within his or her own voice.



Haikus Again



Jade, for travelers.
Rabbit’s foot, to bring good luck.
Whiskey? Just because.


Ease of Play:

Gotta catch ‘em all?!
Your backpack will weigh a ton.
Stick to D&D.


Bold Thought:

A perfect spring day.
We both know what must be done –
The answer is me.


Meteorological Expectation:

Summer sun and wind
Brings promise of thunderstorms
And heavy, fresh rain



I’ve found I enjoy writing haikus – a form I never really utilized. There is something playful and challenging in trying to express an idea in a limited number of syllables and space. Like writing a sonnet and keeping a meter.

Sorry for the slight delay – faulty internet has been glitching for a few days now. Drives me insane.

You lie, World Wide Web

You promised me internet

But left me alone.

Omnipresent Inseam


Omnipresent Inseam


You hear the music in your soul

And just like that away you go

A favorite beat, a lyric sweet

Motivation for your feet.

You’re by yourself so no one sees

How much you creak when you bend your knees

Through jumps, leaps, stomps, reaches, twirls

First you spin and then you whirl.

Just remember that as you dance

There is one thing which sees all…

Your pants.


And pants, they never cease to judge

They sense each millimeter of pudge

Your omnipresent inseam knows

Just how far your dance can go

And you push it just one bit

It will summon all your dignity…

And split!





Movie Trailer: The Thorax


Voice-over: When she murdered his brother, he promised revenge.
Woman: (startled, sitting up in bed) What was that?
Voice-over: The darkness is his ally…
*Camera flashes tight shots of what appears to be a tunnel, dimly lit. Cut to store.*
Store owner: I’m sorry, I don’t know what you expect me to do.
Woman: I need you to help me stop it!
Store owner: There is no stopping it!
*steely-eyed woman now glares at middle distance*
Voice-over:…because the light is his doom.
*Back in the “tunnels,” the camera skitters out of a patch of sudden light. The angle changes around the light to reveal that it is a flashlight, and the point of view is actually very small and close to the ground*
Woman: (holding flashlight and a shoe) Where are you, you bastard?
Voice over: This summer…revenge knows no size…
*Camera pans down and around from woman now, to reveal a single large cockroach on the ceiling over her head*
Cockroach: You know, you’re really starting to bug me.
*cockroach drops in slow motion*
*music beat*
Skittering to a theater near you….