is a National Endowment Award-winning poet, the author of five poetry books and her recently published spiritual memoir, The Future That Brought Her Here
, (Nicolas Hays/Ibis Press) which demonstrates the process of Embodied Dream Image Work.
She has trained with Dutch Jungian Analyst Robert Bosnak in facilitating dream groups. Her full collection of poetry, Original Human
, publishes in 2010 from C.W. Press.
She is the editor of Orpheus & Company; Contemporary Poems on Greek Mythology
. Recently she won The Paul Hoover Critical Essay Award from The Packingtown Review 2009
and The Santa Barbara Poetry Award 2008.
—Back to Gall Contents/Issue Links—
When will my last poem be written about The Attachment?
The Browse and Choose. And why was my choice the lousiest one,
the one that yanked at my neck like the diamond-studded collar
a French poodle would wear. And the poodle, scruffy, unkempt,
that would be me, and I’ve always felt averse to poodles,
of all the annoying dogs for God’s sake, the truly ridiculous,
curly-cued, cosseted, overly-inbred canine of kings who wore velvet
slippers with embroidered foxes on their toes
and knee-length silk for socks . . .
but back to the poodles . . . or what I became with The Attachment,
that preening coquette. If only it hadn’t been opened, or was formatted differently,
in something other than Rich Text, because finances
were our problem, or his problem with me . . . like I had no dowry
as in the olden day tales where I would have been too poor
to ever even own a poodle. And one could just not make a match
like that in certain societies, an Edith Wharton House of Mirth scenario
without the final poison, so much less dramatic you would assume
though Lily’s death took less than a few hours whereas
my no-rest-in-peace added years to my face, my anxious system
infested with allergens, if not chloral hydrate or nightshade,
or hemlock, just tricky irritants suppressing my breathing nonetheless,
strangling my bronchial branches which made breathing painful,
so painful, hence living too, for, well . . . so far—the rest of my life.
My Heart in the Witness Protection Program
I was afraid they’d off me, those crooks
whose sordid business I’d exposed at the televised trial.
My heart was pretty darn sad to pack everything up
and leave Massachusetts for that desiccated land
where language was flat as the side of a semi,
for that suburbia of ordinaries
stepping out of their houses each morning
still in pajamas to pick up the paper before the loose dogs
pissed on the headlines. And yes, my heart missed the comfort
of New England trees, avuncular oaks, assorted canopies
of green, and it winced a little each day as we drove
my witness-protected Toyota down to the canyon KMart
where we could wander the aisles like nobodies,
not pink and contused, not bleeding between the steel slats
of the shopping cart. Not even screaming at sticks staked
through the soil of discounted plants as we walked
among the appliances, cusinarts with seven situational
speeds for chopping and crushing, mincing and flaying,
for slapping and stabbing and mutilating—Do I need
to say my heart wasn’t happy in that arid little Gulag?
But weeks rolled into months as we played Black Jack
on Friday nights with other meat-stained tattlers and killers,
thieves and thugs who lived down the avenue, and like anyone’s
heart, mine acclimated to that contaminated little town . . .
through all the black heavens scorched starless—
with their twisted, their listing, their skinny, balsamic moons.
[from Harmony of the Next, Winner of the Riverstone Poetry Chapbook Contest, Riverstone Press, 2005]