Valhalla

Tapestry

The youthful maiden
toying with the threaded tapestry
of fate with her two sisters
about her, behooved the hero
to take up title and sword.

She said to win himself a place at the table —
the head of the table —
where he could recount the glorious
battle that leads to greatest honor.

“For what is worth the price of life,”
she asked with her palm, cool
against his sunburned cheek,
“If not to be gambled with?”

Fool that he was,
he thought himself in love,
and listened.

Pills

Shortly after my grandmother’s death
I looked upon her crowded shelf of pills
Thought about pouring a handful into my palms
Thought about pouring a handful into the aching empty places

I was left unmoored by the fragility of family
By the sudden rend of love’s security
And that was the first time such a concrete idea
Came into my head about a means to an end

I closed the cabinet door before I could make real
The possibility (impossibility) a mere reach
beyond my fingertips

I think of that self-preservation in tough times
I am thinking of it now

Seasonal

On the last day of April
The cherry trees besides my home
Have passed the height of their blooming season
And boughs have grown weary with their
Pinkish charges which now litter the streets.
Finding no delight in the windfall
I turn my eyes upon the crabapple instead —
Blossoms of white flesh
Split ripe from magenta casings —
And fool myself into thinking
Of the impermanence of death.

Charming

How charming is
The posy in your pocket
The curl of auburn
Nestled in your locket
Your smiles at
Yellow daises and daffodils
By the meadow’s little rill
Which will run a hundred days
As long as your laughter plays
And promises
You’ll stay.