August 17-24, 2015I/Blaise Pascal“The silence of these infinite spaces frightens me:The dark dissolves to numbered points and emptiness.I’ve tried to write of it, but the imploding blankSwallows what...August 3-10, 2015In this fine light the figurationsrise and dielike Attention and the senseand sensuous condition of paintand music God knows Degasknew the waltz of signs,...July 20-27, 2015“The bird lies still while the light goes on flying.”From “Unknown Age,” by W. S. MerwinThose with strapped-on wingsfor ages dreamt of flying like the birds...June 22-29, 2015For Sister Rosemary Johnson, R.S.M.And a river went out of the place of pleasure to water paradise.—Gn 2:10Adam…could not have inferred from the fluidity and transparency of water that it would suffocate him….—Hume...June 8-15, 2015The editors of America are pleased to present the winner of the 2015 Foley Poetry Award, given in honor of William T. Foley, M.D.Water leaped here not long since.Then earth belched up a ridge,and here we cluster, crabs all, cleaving...June 8-15, 2015
The original title of this year’s Foley poetry contest winner was, “After the Molt, the King of Crabs, Feeling Tender, Addresses the Folk.” On first reading, the poem seemed messy, too strange, haphazard. The long title contributed to that impression.May 18, 2015I’ll return for one night, carrying youpapaya. Thickly cut. Resemblingdriftwood scattered below the parking lotI can see from Sacramento’s river bridges.I’m taking I-5 south to 99....May 11, 2015“I am rebegot/ Of absence, darkness, death; things which are not.” — John Donne, “A Nocturnal Upon St. Lucy’s Day”Again and again, from nothingness I’m born.Each death I witness makes me more my own.I imagine each excess line of mine erased,...May 4, 2015The lady of the cleanersdoesn’t care.She really doesn’t care.She writes your fatein a steamed infernoand presses with despair.Three pins in mouth—...April 27, 2015Their shadows flickered and stretched to the west.The future fixed its lidless eyeOn concrete switchgrass, furrows of asphalt.Telescopes, searchlights aimed on highShot the flare of the mind at darkness.We stood on the moon but...