Alice, hopelessly romantic, but also rather smart,
Builds a blooming garden with a Victorian sub-plot:

Dahlias for dignity – in her suit and gloves, Miss
Ethel’s constitutional, each day at three o’clock.

Foxglove for the NIMBYs and their hollow care:
Galloping property taxes do not improve the block.

Hop Vines remember Markus, lover lost to rare disease,
Irises keep hope to find a cure, but only when they’re blue.

Justicia to push on through the pain, with
Lupine for finding love anew.

Marigolds celebrate a graduation:
Niobe has her family’s first.

Ornamental onions for the courage of their trip,
Petunias for friendship after oceans traversed.

Queen Anne’s Lace for all are welcome here,
Rosebay cements our bonds.

Sunflowers for the puppers: boundless loyalty
Thistle for the cats, aloof and in the fronds.

Ulex blooms all year round and thanks the postman
Vincent in rain and shine and snow.

Winnie invites you in for coffees, and with her daughter
Xanthe, always have a casserole when times are low.

Zinnia gets planted for those two: beloved constancy.

Na/Glo PoWriMo Day Nineteen asks for an abecedarian poem: one where word choices are in alphabetical order.

I’ve missed two days due to a big work project, but I’ll aim to make them up.

Women of the Wheel

Women of the Wheel

Tuck my skirt tight against my thighs,
and I ride.  Wind in my hair,
tears in my eyes, no compromise,
I ride.

My grandmothers’ aunties fought for
bloomers and split-skirts, with
bone-bruises and blame; petticoats
and blood built my bike.

On the Burke-Gilman, the InterUrban,
I fly.  I spin, I pedal, I sweat,
a jingle jangle belled on your left,
I ride.

At the farmers market, my bike will get me a token,
a couple of bucks for saving some gas,
but great gran got the vote
from ladies who passed.

E-ticket to ride, anywhere my legs
and mind can take me. Unsupervised,
Life thrills my wheels,
breaks rusty chains of
chaperones and supervised travels.

Dames who dared,
wind in hair, and tears in eyes.
No compromise.
We ride.

Na/GloPoWriMo Day Sixteen asks us “to write a poem that uses the form of a list to defamiliarize the mundane.”

I didn’t do that, but I was inspired by taking something ubiquitous and delving deeper: bicycles and femme-empowerment. I’m also inspired and informed by Tessa Hulls, artist and cyclist extraordinaire. She’s my bike shero, and one of the things she does is speak about bicycles as tools for social liberation. She’s bad-ass, and she bikes.

Also for your perusal: a quick primer on the history of women and bicycles.

At Physical Therapy

Metal scrapes on my skin, and, WOW!, but
my arm feels light, this crunchy muscle
fiber may be breaking up —

yes, I’ll do my exercises, of course,
and more often, too, with more
stretch and more hold, more saute pans
I can throw on fire, and flip, and I want to
be throwing pans on the fire 20 years from now

yes, yes, stretch every day, before work,
and after. I will, I’m sure, I want to.

I can’t think, walking out, I’m glowing, floating —
I’m like that every time I’m manipulated, every time
my body is pushed and pulled, and, OW!
four hours later, this hurts,

an ice pack now, and some exercises?

Yes, of course. Manipulated, pushed,
and pulled.

Na/GloPoWriMo Day Fifteen challenges us to write a monologue.  I had a physical therapy visit today.

I don’t love this one, but that’s not the point of Na/GloPoWriMo.  The point…..is stretching.

Leeward Dry

Leeward Dry

A gathering spell this mountain hides

glacier-carved and hewn time and time again

pushed up from forces unimaginable

windward blows the rain down

and summit stops.

Leeward is dry with waters lost:



Na/GlowPoWriMo Day Ten

asks us to incorporate a regional weather colloquialism into a poem.  “Rainshadow” may not be a colloquialism, but it sure is common in the Pacific Northwest.  When a wet front approaches a mountain and climbs, the water is dumped on the windward side.  The leeward side of the mountain is protected from the rain, as the moisture as condensed and dropped out with the altitude climb.




Things That May Have Been

Things That May Have Been

Our legs tangled in the midnight waters of a suburban pool,
cheap beer and underaged drinking our ballast;

Basil-breathed vodka stories greet the rooftop dawn,
stone roses, garden hoses, a record on the player;

A lace dress, a gimlet kiss, a stairwell to lean
against your chest, maybe on your next trip through;

Always, you and I, crushed, sweaty, against the long hallway
in the club, melding to the beat, and never going home, come dance;

A long walk, and a picnic out by the soccer fields,
grass stains a fading memory, I’ve kept the bottle.

A touch and something more –
ghosts of past futures possible
ripple outward still.

Na/GloPoWriMo Day Nine asks us to write a Sei Shonagon-style list of “things.”

dVerse’s Tuesday prompt is water.