First Rites of Spring: a Poem While Mountain Biking

Hepatica while riding at Pleasant Valley Park in Grafton, Wisconsin

Stopped and write this poem during my first ride of spring. Working at a nature center has the benefits of now beginning to recognize the plants along the trail.

WordPress being WordPress it didn’t retain intended line breaks, so I suppose I’ll let you imagine where they exist.

Grinning in the sudden fragrance

of last year’s Christmas pines

winding now scenic trails;

a lemonade of civil engineering

in the echoes of the town dump

bike tires lean past

Wild Leeks leafing amidst moss

as the auburn of Wood Betony

stretches it’s floral tentacles

nowhere near an octopus ocean.

I crouch down, saying hello

to the pinkpurple Hepatica.

Blood still thick with last month

body baffled by this new mercury

panting gladly for a breath

within the leaves of last year

New poems published in BlazeVOX 20th Anniversary edition

I’m pleased to have a few new poems published in the latest edition of BlazeVOX. Hard to believe this hardworking press has been a “Publisher of weird little books” for 20 years now. Congrats to editor Geoffrey Gatza on the anniversary.

Go here to read the new BlazeVOX.

(photo taken by my son while experimenting with panoramic photography)

Thoughts about happening upon a moment and stopping to take that picture

Who ever needs that? And more?

Came up in my f-book memories from a decade ago and continues to be head-shaking laughable.

This is one of the first times I recall trying to compose a photograph with intention. Shot it with a hybrid smart/flip phone that featured a full keypad.

Years removed, looking at this picture, for me it’s not about how crisp or precise the image is or isn’t. It’s about having stopped with the decision to attempt to take an intriguing or entertaining photograph. Taking the time to practice, regardless of however inefficient it might be for the rest of the world – our coworkers and friends and family members – to slow time to take a photograph.

At the time I was selling Christmas trees in Florida. My employer waited a minute or two for…

“Hold on – we’ll be there in a minute…Eddie’s taking one of his pictures. Of a bad cock. Yeah, a BAD COCK! Two bad cocks! And MORE!”

Always stop to take the picture/write the poem/phrase of what captures your attention/ire/amazement/laughter.

And granting the people in your company the luxury to do so is a grand form of patronage.

Delighting in the Fleet of Prairie Grasshoppers

New Poetry in Junk Drawer Magazine

I sent out a few poems to the folks at Junk Drawer Magazine and two were accepted. One is relatively recent, and the other I wrote when I worked at Schlitz Audubon Nature Center (a factual poem about House Wrens making nests). Click the cover image below (Junk Drawer’s artwork, not mine) to see the latest edition.

Catching my breath, and a little winter sanity, outdoors

Got out on the trails for a little ride this morning. A few extra photos on my Instagram account below (including a little brief poetry). Feel free to follow me there.

Wisconsin winters are long…we’ve got to get outside and celebrate whatever weather we have. Or we’ll all go insane indoors.

Poem while sitting in traffic

This is how poetry happens. By noticing what you’re noticing. Not some crap about being visited by the muse. Just pay attention to what catches your eye, your senses, galls your sensibilities, your curiosity for language. And play with that, follow that. Even if it’s consternation about the name of a company while waiting at a stoplight. Click the arrow to read this here little poem.

Furrow Release Party Wednesday Night

UW-Milwaukee has an undergraduate literature magazine called Furrow. I sent them a few poems and one got published. The release event takes place Wednesday, May 8 at Art Bar in Milwaukee. Check out the full details here. Reading! Poetry! Live!