you know those days when everywhere you turn,
there is a wall?
and you are like, "i am 21 years old,
and i'm not going to freak out right now,"

but maybe you just want to be 12,
where someone else can decide things
and someone else can take care of you

i think my equilibrium somehow got tilted,
and all the letters in our story are mixed up
but i am drawn to you
and your still, small voice.


The sun still shines, but it presses wearily through fog and branches
The cat sleeps (I feel fonder of it than I used to)
Funny how we measure compatibility by feelings toward pets:
one dog, medium-to-large, outside, beloved.

Well I have made pumpkin into soup, steamed golden squash,
crushed apples into sauce and boiled jars in preservation.
I have crossed our field and picked apples as the sun went down.
My sister and I carried canvas bags
and I will not soon forget the image of her standing in the tree,
stretching to reach each apple.

I have read the words of a carpenter,
those ones that say there is a Shepherd who leaves 99 sheep
in order to find one who is lost and lonely,
in order to pick her up and carry her home.

And I think I want to scrawl Isaiah the poet's words on every wall and corner of my house

They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.
They will be called might oaks, a planting of the Lord.


In the time of my favor I will answer you,
and in the day of salvation I will help you;
I will keep you and will make you to be a covenant for the people,
to restore the land
and to reassign its desolate inheritances,
to say to the captives, "Come out,"
and to those in darkness, "Be free!"

They will feed beside the roads
and find pasture on every barren hill.
The will neither hunger nor thirst,
nor will the desert heat or the sun beat down on them.
He who has compassion on them will guide them
and lead them beside springs of water.

Shout for joy, you heavens;
rejoice, you earth;
burst into song, you mountains!
For the Lord comforts his people
and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.

But you say, "The Lord has forsaken me,
God has forgotten me."

Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
And have no compassion on the child she has borne?

Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!
See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands;
your image is always before me.


Well now,
Ciderfest has come and passed, and we finished the Harvest not three days ago.
I have heard the Canadian geese honking overhead,
and studied symbols of the coming cold in everything:
the tall mullen stalks aging brown and thin,
the yellow grass rattling in the wind at dusk,
the maples and aspen turning golden and deep red.

My hands are dryer than they've been in months,
(And I've been reading about the drought in East Africa, the worst one this decade)
Oh, forgotten lands!
But I will not forget you!

We have heard the Buddha saying, truthfully,
that to live is to suffer.
And maybe we can receive this even as we mourn the drought.

Maybe grief will grow on us like the changing of the leaves,
subtly at first, before we notice its overwhelming color.
For as long as we trade careful and authored farewells,
as long as I long for your hewn words,
I will watch the trees,
kayak glassy lakes,
miss you pensively.


on heartache. [digging out Over the Rhine again.]

I was born to laugh
I learned to laugh through my tears
I was born to love
I'm gonna learn to love without fear

Pour me a glass of wine
Talk deep into the night
Who knows what we'll find

Intuition, deja vu
The Holy Ghost haunting you
Whatever you got
I don't mind

Put your elbows on the table
I'll listen long as I am able
There's nowhere I'd rather be

Secret fears, the supernatural
Thank G-d for this new laughter
Thank G-d the joke's on me

We've seen the landfill rainbow
We've seen the junkyard of love
Baby it's no place for you and me

I was born to laugh
I learned to laugh through my tears
I was born to love
I'm gonna learn to love without fear