Monday, March 31, 2014

Before You Begin (Poem 365)

to kill a poem 
before you begin 
decide: a masterpiece 
an epic important problem 
of intention and meaning 
decide: an elegant haiku 
to be quoted down 
the centuries
assign: an emotion 
tell people: what you plan 
to write about 
tell yourself: this 
is a poem 
insist on the form 
before the content    squeeze 
the cow into the carton
be inflexible about looking 
at the world through a haze 
of intimate wisdom 
be too flexible about 
your nonfat milk turning
walk through water, missing 
the exit feeling    guilty that 
the wish of doom
scratches against 
the toothy sketchbook paper 
on the table


(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Rain Turns (Poem 364)

The way soft streets 
break, tarmac murmurs,
and crooked brick paths
carry promises, the clouds
grow heavy, sagging 
with their jade burden.
A white piano catches, 
hums with flames, burning 
gazelle stupidity the way 
cities burn smooth kids.
Tepid rain turns, spits, 
purring smoke, 
admits nothing not proven 
by kiosks while neighbors
sleep, cats charm 
doorways, and sighs wander,
carrying blossoms to heaven, 
even as Hades stirs.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Call It (Poem 363)

Call it what you will, 
when tiredness sinks 
like syrup in your veins, 
turning your body to lead, 
thoughts growing heavy 
in your head, flowing 
like molasses through 
the channels of your brain,
feverish and dull, the trick 
is to find new dreams to dream, 
new thoughts to think, to fight
boredom, and stand up against 
the tyranny of despair. 

Call it what you will, this 
invisible illness bringing 
into question your every inaction, 
opening the doors of judgment 
among the more critical factions 
inhabiting your life, setting up 
housekeeping in your brain, 
changing the ever-changing life 
you hoped you'd have, the trick 
is to find a likely nook, build a nest, 
and crawl in for a few hours 
(or days) of rest, come what may,
to turn away from the less than 
understanding, and to be willing 
to embrace the mystery of it all, 
the unnamed maw drawing you 
closer each day, and the way 
the sun shines through 
your curtains in the morning. 

Call it what you will, if you listen 
you will hear a warning, 
whispered or shouted: 
Heed me; 
slow down; 
be more selfish; and 
honor the luminous light 
glazing the shimmering, 
glassine surfaces of 
the sacred temple 
that is you. This, 
call it what you will, is 
the trick, the secret, the answer 
to every question ever asked.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, March 28, 2014

So Should You Be (Poem 362)

When heaven's heavy air 
is jade, so should you be.
Desire, in a mightier soul
of constellated stars, 
hushes the liquescent
flame cut from gardens,
dripping with wisteria,
at their most verdant.
Oh, take away that map 
within—it learned to lie 
to me. Instead, wrap up 
your gratitude, and
watch the morning bloom,
then whisper, after dark
tonight, of the honor 
in beauty's name: 
A poet selling words 
of delight and ennui for 
hours in the blinding veils 
of deep blue desert twilight.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Health Care Costs (Poem 361)

Wash your veggies, cut them up,
And juice a green drink every day.
Let cow's milk never touch your cup!
Throw your whole-wheat bread away.
Make smoothies from fresh, organic fruit,
(Or frozen if you're in a rush).
Bake yams--the more nutritious root,
Not buttery, white-potato mush.
No meat! Eat varied beans and rices,
Cut out all sugar and caffeine!
Don't complain about high prices,
Or being too tired to cook and clean!
Too sick or poor to afford eating healthy?
Who cares? It's the privilege of the wealthy.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Photo: Jasper Greek Golangco 




Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Best Decision (Poem 360)

When I looked up 
and saw you 
staring at me 
from the store across 
the corridor, wearing 
that ridiculous, 
black leather, 
button-up vest, I knew, 
without doubt, that 
I had made the best 
decision of my life.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Naked Hands (Poem 359)

Looking down at my naked hands, 
I notice they are not working 
ice-cold water, a little at a time, 
into flour and lard, rolling the dough 
to a perfect thickness to contain 
beef juice and melting butter, 
nor are they handing the trimmings 
to little girls eager to fold and crimp 
their own tiny pies.

Looking down at my naked hands, 
I am amazed at how clean they are--
no paint stains too stubborn 
for turpentine, no red clay in crevices 
and grooves, no berry juice, 
tree sap, or dark rich potting soil 
under the nails.

Looking down at my naked hands, 
I notice they are still, rather 
than endlessly busy with needle, 
shuttle and thread, embroidering 
flowers and tatting lace for hundreds 
of handkerchiefs, pillowcases, 
doilies and antimacassars.

Looking down at my naked hands, 
I recognize a few tiny sun spots, 
a raised vein, the texture of skin 
not quite as plump and immaculate
as a child's. I see that they are 
familiar, comfortable, capable, and 
(with a frisson of surprise) 
I see that they are mine.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, March 24, 2014

Chestnut (Poem 358)

Chestnut-sheltered bench
Here, dusky flowers whisper
Becalmed waters sigh

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six




Sunday, March 23, 2014

You Are Mine* (Poem 357)

You are mine, are found in me,
Found, as you deny invisibility,
Found, unlike a shadow at midnight,
Found, as a raindrop on desert sands.

I dislike you, yet you lose me still,
Your earthly body, homely and dim,
Yet you are not you, refusing
Capture, as shadow is found in shade.

Let me lift you from the mire of apathy--
   touch
Your dullness, find you exulting 
   in sensation,
Planted in the cool, dark shadows
Of my dispassion.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six



*An exercise in contrariness, based on "I Am Not Yours" by Sara Teasdale

Saturday, March 22, 2014

At the Shore, in April (Poem 356)

Offshore, fog blooms,
but here, boats shimmer in 
watery sunlight, creaking 
old floorboard tunes.
Pelicans fall from the sky
over  rocks shivering
dark with sea lions 

Cold April winds set old lovers 
to walking, where poetry flutters in 
the budding trees like piano keys 
trilling under small, young hands.

Misty children skip along the wet 
sand, tracing lacy puffs of foam, 
their fits of giggles rising, gull-like, 
on the breeze. 

Selflessly, they offer jingling 
shell-and-sea-glass trinkets to their 
mothers, who watch the day unfold 
from rumpled plaid blankets, 
eyes scanning the stanzas 
written on the horizon.

As twilight blooms, wood smoke 
melts sunburned smiles, leaves bright 
eyes bleary. Foolishly in love, young
couples linger until midnight, then 
trail off, hearts burning for their 
white-painted bedrooms. 

In full joy, three dolphins leap,
luminescent, beyond the point. 
Boats sputter. Later, 
the golden stars will sway
and spin.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, March 21, 2014

Consolation (Poem 355)

The first time I heard them, there 
were only a few, but the nights 
had been silent, long, cold, 
and their voices rose like hope 
from the woods, making 
my heart ache and sing. 

Soon, the chorus swelled to tens 
of thousands, a chaotic rapture, 
myriad silver threads 
embroidering thin, blue evenings 
with a complicated pattern. 

When I learned that, here, 
neither crickets nor fireflies 
would glaze the darkness with 
familiar summer sweetness, 
my ribcage throbbed, bruised 
by longing and regret. 

Still, the ache lingers (growing 
sharp if I touch that spot, 
just so); but the worst of it 
has passed, eased 

by the choir of countless, tiny 
camouflage-clad froglets, 
to whose voices I opened 
my windows, despite 
the seeping chill, and 

by the heart's willingness to rest 
for a few beats--pressed close against nature's breast--
and be soothed by 
lullabies ancient and familiar.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Photo: Kevin JF Martin

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Fleurette Africaine (Poem 353)

Coffee, short and sweet;
a coral haze over 
violet shadowed streets 
portends the day's 
breathless heat;
voices of waking and
of a long night's end
linger in alleyways;
a radio nearby plays
Fleurette Africaine--
a thin, crackling version
punctuated by the dull
flap flap flap of sandals 
on pavement, 
the delicate snap 
of newspaper pages, 
and the rhythmic tapping 
of tiny cups touching down 
on wafer-thin saucers.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


   Photo: © Frank Schulenburg




Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Dirty Words (Poem 352)

Imagine fifty 
people

then
multiply that
group 
by a million 
and add, oh, a few
hundred thousand,
or so.

How much space 
do they take 
up, all those people?
What is 
that kid
in the third row
wearing?
How does his hair feel
to his grandmother's
veined hand, which rests
lightly, there,
on the back 
of his neck?

In America every 
single
one 
of this sea of humans
lives the dream

in food insecure 
households.
Children in all 
of these households 
were food 
insecure.  

Tens and tens 
of millions of

    People

live/love/starve/laugh on
Ten-thousand dollars
a year 
for a family 
of 
four.

Authorities 
who know
call this extreme 
poverty,
but 

[hush...]
poverty is 
     a dirty word,
so don't think
about
it.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Nightingale (Poem 351)

I feel like a nightingale
like a curse
like a poet   like a girl
like a Girl Poet cursed with
the liquiscent voice of a nightingale

I feel like a hamburger
like a traveler
like a prom queen
like a shooting match
Like a traveling prom queen 
dressed in tweed and brogues
for a cozy, country-estate shooting match

I feel like a pincushion
like a jazz fan, a swimmer, a candy bar
I feel like a listener, like a crystal
like a languid cat listening to a crystalline,
aqua-blue jazz set

I feel like myself     I feel   
like myself   I feel like my self

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, March 17, 2014

Private Club (Poem 350)

Triumphantly, the darkness 
burns away what sparse
blue coastal light remains 
at ten o'clock.
Deep promises are deftly 
uncorked; dreamy trumpet, 
faintly sharp, listens
to itself.
Thigh-to-thigh, at the bar, 
we imagine their small 
smiles of surprise at 
being admitted into 
our private club.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Violet (Poem 349)

Verdant, mosses beneath arching 
    lilac branches--bright, velvety, 
    a tiny secret world;
In earliest spring, windows, at last,
Open, house drinking fresh, 
    crisp air to quench 
    a winter-long thirst;
Later, when the day grows soft and 
    the sun rests
    on the moist
Earth below this room,
The scent of violets will alight, 
    fragile as the powder 
    on butterflies' wings.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Diamonds in the Sun (Poem 348)

It's too sweet:
that bright green tendril,
so delicate, breaking
through the crust of
dry, sandy earth.
It's too simple:
water, air, light,
and one gray speck 
so small my childish 
fingers fumbled for it 
in the wrinkle of flesh 
in my folded palm.
It's too delicate:
The memory of her
smile, her patience,
her joy in the everyday
adventures we shared,
like clambering down
rocky paths to run
on a quiet beach,
like seeing our sweet peas
waving like fairies' flags 
in the brisk Pacific breeze,
like walking along 
a sidewalk glittering with 
mica, and pretending
to be blinded by 
diamonds in the sun.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, March 14, 2014

Quest (Poem 347)

Disorientation. 
Analyst curious about 
deplorable snake. 
Quest...

Crossed paths with 
twelve howling, hirsute
prophets--more annoying 
than compelling.

Mouth of great basin.
Elder: "Behold, 
agreeable Pilgrim!"
Debauchery.

Noted phenomena 
with keen eye:
evolution of birds
bridge evacuations 
grainy acoustic gadgets

The birthplace of giving.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Early Riser (Poem 346)

Caramel colors glint in the sweating glass
That waits, hidden, behind the pumpkin-
    shaped 
Cookie jar; still dark, but morning comes
    upon us fast,
Gray and mysterious, louche figures
    lighting the trees, draped
Over branches and curled like cats in the
    bushes' dark undersides.
Behind the yellow gingham curtains, a
    cherry-red lamp burns,
Casting its warming smile over
    generations of memories that hide--
Barely out of sight--each patiently
    waiting, fluttering out in turn. 
Smoke rises in plaits from the cigarette
    she holds,
Affecting what she once imagined an
    elegant stance,
Palm turned upward near her chin, her
    elbow folds
Neatly against her side. Yawning,
    entering, I catch the merest glance
Of shadows in her eyes, before she 
    turns, beaming, to kiss me, and to say,
"Good morning, Morning Glory," coffee
    pot in hand, her ghosts now safely 
    locked away.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six




Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Liquid Fish (Poem 345)

Liquid fish caroused.
Having plundered seaside towns,
most tourists ran.

Walking along hard wet sand,
our hands stroke poetry.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Tuscan (Poem 344)

In a large house 
("mansion" is gauche)
in a well-to-do suburb
(Why is it, we don't say 
rich or poor 
anymore?)
a brittle, woman 
starves herself
to skeletal proportions
(unconsciously aping
that which she abhors).
Her proficiency in shrinking 
is unrelated to any 
social dilemma or moral crisis. 
She does not feel stifled. 
She does not feel voiceless. 
She has never felt less-than,
or passed-by. Yet, slowly, 
she vanishes, eclipsed 
by furniture that  grows 
grander in scale, heavier
day by day: looming trunks, 
towers and pillars of rosewood. 
(As a casket, her writing desk 
would more than suffice.)
"Tuscan," she tells her friends,
drinking espresso with 
a paper-thin twist of lemon rind 
from tiny bird's egg tazze.
"It's so lush. I'm doing 
the entire house
in Tuscan."

(c) 2014, by hannah six

Monday, March 10, 2014

Daylight (Poem 343)

Daylight, light of day, daytime
combination of all sunlight
diffuse sky scattered 
across the terrestrial atmosphere
each day, Earth rotates,
and the sun shines on, 
indirect, considered
outdoors during daylight, 
sunlight reflected from 
objects in time (i.e., moonlight) 
is seldom considered 
while every side of 
daylight, daytime, sunlight
(even reflected, despite being 
indirect) is understood to occur
daytime, daylight, 
sunlight, light of day,
unimaginable, happens 

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six





Sunday, March 9, 2014

Noontime (Poem 342)

Acres of bleached concrete,
Bleak under searing sun.
Noon, sidewalks shimmer.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Before Dawn (Poem 341)

Black dog barks and wails,
Fog wraiths moisten leaves and stones,
This hour before dawn.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, March 7, 2014

Accord (Poem 340)

Perhaps enough has been said about agreement.

Entire conversations, like trees, have grown and bloomed, while adversaries circle each other, round-and-round the trunks, until

Autumn's fury flares. Each one crows and squawks about the merits of his own ideas as they trample the bright, crisp 

Carpet into dun-toned dust. Neither is willing to give; both are too happy to take. Mere agreement is, finally, insufficient.

 (c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Black Cat (Poem 339)

A black cat whispers,
Immaculate shadows swim,
This dream of blue twilight.

(c) by Hannah Six

(Photo: Kreuzschnabel via Wikimedia Commons)



Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Go, Fan, Kiss (Poem 338)

Go fan kiss plan ply bland
In fire love is health
A hurried plum mystery dove a pawn been sent
Say heart glove thumbing
Bit of sod he blushed to stay by trove sea
Your hope his rove tryst
Was all that bit of Brahmin story sure
Half sell that wit may hammer glad defends
For love thine own sir
Friendly sands wet trim finishes three
He was Iceland is solved with a rhyme
Can share tour river mend who pulled your room love drill knolls
Thick rolls shore steed.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

End of the Day (Poem 337)

At the end of the day, 
when the bare trees 
stand in silhouette 
against the gray sky, 
I look over my shoulder 
and see you 
wandering up to me. 

At the end of the day, 
when the sun is setting 
into a sparkling pool 
of rose and gold, 
I look to my right
and see you 
standing next to me.

At the end of the day, 
when a spray of stars 
is softly veiled by 
a thin layer of clouds, and 
the moon little more 
than a gathering glow 
at the edge of the horizon, 
I look ahead 
and see you 
patiently waiting for me.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, March 3, 2014

A Lily, No. 1 (Poem 336)

Adventitious and true,
a glorious success,
mysterious, reclusive, 
while snowflakes 
whisper to themselves, 
she comes into her own
when days grow long,
gaudy petals glazed 
with pale moon-glow.


(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Reply When (Poem 335)

Reply when 
the holiday is 
forgiven    when 
the loveliest 
rose tree has been 
memorized 
for miles    softly 
and secretly 
imagining 
a new history 
pirouetting 
on a wish

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Come Calling (Poem 334)

Three days of wonder
whatever happened to
that one day of lost

Amid the pine
barrens flat, featureless
quicksand danger afoot

Then two days, then here
begin years of next until
more or less come calling

As they always do, how
nightingales sing on
a wednesday
when listened to


(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, February 28, 2014

Pirate Samba (Poem 333)

Slippery, picky path
almost intoxicating
hard-driving pirate samba,
profane, fairly cloudy 
salacious material,
a bell-ringing distraction
diverting quintessential
ceremonial intersection 
of sugarcane and copper
cow bells

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six





Thursday, February 27, 2014

Spring magic (Poem 332)

Bluebells  woods
Green filtered light
Spring's sweet magic
Clear cold nights
Secret blossoms
Presage fruit
Full and round
And ripe

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Welcome (Poem 331)

One simple morning, 
mountain folding back 
a golden rose blanket 
from its shoulders, 
first gaudy sunrise 
biting at the heels 
of winter's dark rain. 

One simple song 
on the radio, swaying 
in rhythm with northbound 
tires, taillights a swathe of 
crimson sequins draped 
over the rippling highway. 

One simple day, love 
and light a glimmering cloak 
whose only opening 
allows the future to seep in, 
unannounced, anticipated, welcome...

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Foolish Turtle (Poem 330)

Foolish turtle,
   walking your solemn course
   to nowhere 
Peering skeptic,
   the process pleases 
   you best
Some swift, grinning tart
   drifting in your wake
   may try to pass, but 
You, puffed up and solemn,
   forgive the interlopers 
   in your quest 
   for a pickled beet and 
   a perfectly uneventful day

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, February 24, 2014

New (Poem 329)

Tumbling lines 
of curvaceous 
skyscrapers pushed
this way and that
by black patent 
leather reflecting 
the sky    bands of 
brass and grasses 
Norwegian pine and 
glass    blue steel 
sequins glinting 
in the sun    no corners 
no cornices no clay    
powder maize peach 
and mint    cool 
liquid Jordan almond 
candy poured 
sweet and creamy    
making every side 
the sunny side of the 
newly paved streets

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Katja (Poem 328)

Billows of white
silk    swirling 
underfoot
clouds caressing 
ankles    hands
smoothing 
benevolent mist 
moving 
silently   assured
of admiration
and contentment

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Saturday, February 22, 2014

Search Wildly (Poem 327)

Search wildly 
    the spirited moon, 
consider the indigo sea.
You loved and were 
    clearly triumphant,
surprised by the pinch 
    of the years, 
fatigued by their 
    eccentric dance,
but brave to have 
    taken the chance.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, February 21, 2014

Morning Sketch (Poem 326)

White paper, black ink,
Coffee in cherry-red mug,
Now, saved for always

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Imperfection is beautiful :)

Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Lie (Poem 325)

Shaken by the idea of taking advantage, 
yet not enough to resist telling him what he 
wanted to hear, she knew the lie would remain, 
lightly folded and slightly threadbare 
from wear and tear, in her lingerie drawer 
for years. 

Who would not agree that happiness is more important than an engagement ring under your pale yellow, satin-encased pillow? 

On Sunday afternoon, at her mother's 
dinner, someone was asking questions.
Immediately, she gathered her cashmere 
coat and private concerns, tied a silk 
scarf around her neck, and said her
goodbyes. 

An hour afterwards, in a bleak, 
fifth-floor hallway, a certain detective presents a hawk-nosed investigator 
with the list of times and dates, then 
sits, tipped back in his arthritic 
desk-chair, and worries. 

The payments on the incandescent 
diamond ring--which he turns over and over 
in his right hand--are only half-finished, and their train will be departing 
(whether she's married or not) 
at half-past-six.

(c) by Hannah Six

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

One Last Explanation (Poem 324)

His car is new, the grass long 
and bright. They spread a blanket 
under the pines near the chapel, 
unwrap Italian hoagies from 
crackling white butcher paper, and 
eat together, apart. She is ambivalent, 
and finds his manner ingratiating, embarrassingly repentant. 
He hands her a brown paper napkin,
laughs too easily at her half-joking remarks, makes it clear he fears 
she's had enough. And he is right. 
His apologies are a decade overdue. 
The valley spreads broadly beyond 
the little ridge, a film of ocher dust 
tinting the air. His flattery makes her brittle and jumpy. So, when he offers 
his hand to help her up, she 
pretends not to notice, and when 
he allows his lower lip to tremble, 
she stands up, brushes off her jeans, 
and feels for her keys. Following her 
to her car, he subjects her to 
one last explanation, their final 
passage, ridiculous, entangled.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Hesitant (Poem 323)

Umbrellas of green 
shelter hesitant pink buds 
tricked into blooming

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, February 17, 2014

Ovation (Poem 322)

Yet I glean 
tomorrow   tonight 
we'll lay in   
my dreamboat   
is not empty
for none will be 
mine   let's sup 
on orange anemone
and wanton red apple   
ovation I want you  
for my sake   I wrote 
in a poem end 
to end (more)   reach 
to the sky   promise 
peace

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Photo: USAF Senior Airman Joshua Strang (Wikimedia Commons 2006 Photo of the Year)

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Bone (Poem 321)

Although he buried it raw 
hours ago, Dog looks at 
me with pity--I've forgotten, 
and will surely demur. 
He sits in front of the oven,
where a rather large
piece of cow is 
slowly roasting to a 
heart-breaking tenderness. 
You buried it, remember?
Looking down, I encounter 
a pitying pair of 
dark, doleful eyes. 
Of course, he will relish 
my gasp when, after
waiting all winter for 
the bone to cure, 
he pulls what looks like
a human femur--marbled 
with brown and oozing 
marrow--from the mud. 

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Saturday, February 15, 2014

Marlene's World (Poem 320)

favored symbols, ancient, versatile--inspired by indigo-warm, 
weather-brushed conscience 

selection of boutique-sweet 
pacts--women giving hope 
under uncomfortable drawstring pasts 
thick with utopia 

short takes of observation 
experiencing varied thick-spirited 
elements, mixed with 
current alpaca-rich traditions 
of aromatic goats, and patronage

festive dream 
spirit of small beauty and organic 
changes in iconic
reclaimed-copper knitting 

feeling perfect
provides the utmost variety 
combining the texture of popped metals 
in gorgeous fusion

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, February 14, 2014

Confection (Poem 319)

Strings of dancing 
fairy lights 
trailing dreams 
and wishes
through the trees
brighten this night
with memories
deliver the secret 
of a smile
of sunny mornings
and the sweetness 
of watermelon 
on my tongue

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six




(Photo: BriYYZ via Wikimedia Commons)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Shadow Soldier (Poem 318)

Shadow soldier at the fete, 
dancing, teasing, I laugh 
at myself, only in time 
to capture one last glimpse 

Arm around my shoulders, in 
the company of night-masked 
revelers, he walks me into 
the frozen aqua dawn

We step off the path to kiss 
a bit awkwardly--in a patch of
winter berries like droplets 
of blood on the snow--while 
the others go on without us 

Later, alone on the fourth floor, 
amid stacks of dusty volumes 
in German and French, I remember 

His hand in my back pocket 
and the empty city streets 
and the garnet-strewn ground 
and decide I can work with this

Oh, my God, I was so much 
braver when I was young.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Junk Mail* (Poem 317)

We have recently learned that 
discreet housewives can't say 
goodbye to weight-loss experts;
that hot Chinese girls never 
complete auto repairs or 
trick local Jewish singles;
and that the president waived 
the sexy visions of beautiful 
married women. 
But, what if technology could
restore youthful hair? 
You could already be longer, 
harder, stronger, more... You 
still have time to change 
your perfect panty, 
sell your timeshare, or browse 
profiles of love through faith. 
This 10-second holiday could prevent your heart attack.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six



*Once again, thank you, spammers, for providing such bountiful material and inspiration!




Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Ashamed (Poem 316)

How do the feverish ashamed
--cheeks prickling, eyes 
glowing and glazed--hide the 
gritty heft of their skeleton keys? 
How do they silence the jangling 
in their pockets that reminds them 
of the rusty-hinged doors they 
closed, of the dark, still passages 
leading there?
How do they capture and 
quiet the trilling flock 
of musical nights and diner days? 
How shade the vivid fury 
of diamonds and daydreams? 
In what gilded cages do they 
display the aging hearts' desires 
and unborn loyalties that would, 
otherwise, fall into a jagged V 
and disappear 
into the southern night?

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, February 10, 2014

Tsunami (Poem 314)

Long before it 
arrives
freight-train rumble 
bearing down
prairie storm inking 
out the horizon
tidal wave of
gunmetal thunderheads 
steamrolling creases 
from hills that glow
eerily in the half-light
claw all you want 
at the cliff's face
they say
this tsunami will break
and you will 
be overwhelmed, 
crumpled and finally
swept out to sea

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Pointillist (Poem 313)

Tuesday 
plastic food 
premiered park
bicycle bag fashion 
giant jazz butcher 
controlled trellis plane
prison beggars address
exam cactus calculators
aerial satin sparrow 
remote widow 
cream panther fur

(c) 2014 by Hannah Six





Luxe, Calme et Volupté ("Luxury, Calm and Pleasure") by Henri Matisse, 1904. Oil on canvas, 98 x 118.5 cm. Musée d'Orsay, Paris. 




Saturday, February 8, 2014

Look Up (Poem 312)

Odious afternoon that 
precedes the ominous 
night, the gentle tug 
of the clear water lapping 
at your toes. Why not look 
up, scan the horizon? 
The living sand, wet 
beneath your feet, begins 
to suck at your ankles.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, February 7, 2014

Attica Road (Poem 312)

High tomorrow 
we found plum 
magical you can fear 
her   you need air
then give her more 
cashmere and deal 
me in Friday
on Attica Road

Be still child of time   
morning will soon be 
the cat's ears are up
in the moon on his May
night time musical habit  
on Attica road

A bad heart can choke 
you   high on a totem
or color coordinated 
pool bar hotel
fearless magical naked
job left back standing
out in a bay 
on Attica Road

His empty tomorrow
a kiss a bow sing
to her   know for
a year or 
more   merry 
pair wrapped 
in a blanket 
on Attica Road 

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Banshee (Poem 311)

In northern realms 
grim woman keens 
and cries   lamenting 
twilight souls through 
whose lips murmurings 
of last hopes 
and lost loves 
passed in a whispering 
sigh   how dreadful 
to round the muddy
pathway's bend
and find her 
kneeling over the run
--dark and cold as 
the North Sea--
draped in mist   hands
raw and flaming red
scrubbing blood 
from the clothes 
of your dead
even as they grow cold

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Photo: Shaun Ferguson 
(via Wikimedia Commons)

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Who? (Poem 310)

Who 
can I say 
goodbye to 
after 
the barrel 
burstsWhen 
my mouth is empty 
of names, whose 
pain should I 
lament? 
When the dull ache 
of iron flattens 
the wind-creased 
February night, 
who 
can I cry for, whose 
shattered fragments 
should I gather in 
my thin nylon skirt, whose 
shards glue together 
in my vain efforts 
to reconstruct 
a hard-lost life? 
When galaxies weep, 
and the very stars, 
like shimmering shrapnel, 
rain down 
on peaceful dreams, 
on furtive love, 
on heated words 
that cannot be 
recalled, 
who
tell me
who
can I say 
goodbye to?

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Azaz, Syria 
(Photo: Scott Bob, VoA News, via Wiki Commons)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Winter White (Poem 309)

Like piped icing, swirls
of snow edge all the eaves
in town, the trees, and each 
wrought iron fence. The swing 
sets sparkle now; the trails,
the slopes are fresh, the
very streets pristine; and
the sacred mountain, always
she wears winter

white, like swathes of sweet
angora brushed to a fizz 
of mist by gales, winds,
each breeze, belying the 
bone-deep freeze that sears 
within her hardened heart, 
where she wears winter

white, September, 
March, and May--no slave 
to fashion, she 
prefers the shade 
of innocence year-round. 
Meringue, whipped cream, 
the color of a prairie storm, 
a pristine pearl, a sun-soaked 
beach where warm, clear 
water kisses sand aglow 
under a brilliant moon--
so round, so full of midnight 
dreams, and she 
wears winter white.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Monday, February 3, 2014

Bonfire (Poem 308)

Broken spires and 
shards of flames 
crack open the door 
to dreaming worlds

All around, woods 
are stained with inky 
swathes, whisper 
     their prayers
as night unfurls

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Hummingbird (Poem 307)

Floating in the sky, hovering 
in the water, blinded by 
veil upon veil of iridescent 
azure, cerulean, indigo;
Earth's steady breath tilts 
the elements, and I sink
into the rhythm, the soothing 
rise and sway, so that, 
when a thrumming current 
unzips the silence, my heart
dives deep and I rise,
ears prickling, expecting 
something dangerous, 
something swarming, or 
stinging--not this 
sun-struck gem buoyed by 
the strata of afternoon heat,
hurrying from honeysuckle 
to pine on a mission 
of utmost importance.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Saturday, February 1, 2014

First Crocus (Poem 306)

Before the advancing army,
a single scout crouches
under the gaunt maple
and tests the air
surreptitiously, 
wary of dangers and
inclement weather, 
carrying the mystery of
the ages, heart silently 
opening to the possibility 
of grace.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Friday, January 31, 2014

Blue Jacket (Poem 305)

It is enough that you closed 
the door, which had only ever 
been ajar to begin with.
It is enough that you prefer 
smooth, succulent new growth, 
I, ancient redwood groves. 
It is enough that you chose 
to turn, laughing, toward those 
who do not know how long 
you took to buy 
one black jacket.

You will tell the story of 
the door you closed, though 
you will say it opened. 
You will learn to love the fruits 
of summer, not only their 
fragrant spring blossoms.  
You will turn, laughing, toward 
those who know how long 
you took to buy 
one blue jacket. 

It must be enough that they, 
not I, will be there.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six




(In the interest of full disclosure: This poem is adapted from an original poem I wrote in 2011.)

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Oktoberfest (Poem 304)

A semi-sleeping dream 
found her washing up
on shore, helpless 
and deadly   serious
about enjoying herself

complete with dirndl 
dancing and a sweet
amber Fest-Märzen she 
proclaimed her intention 
to let her hair down and 
executed a perfect swan 
dive into Oktoberfest

swilling smoke and polkas 
trying to clear her heart
of him   of the glimpse 
of bright hair among 
the drunken sailors at 
the edge of the night

For that instant, heart pounding
For that instant, feeling lovely 
and hopeful and thoroughly vivid
swelling up with it all 
until her skin stretched taut
and shiny across her cheekbones 
But the festival is over.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wednesday Cafe (Poem 303)

The voices of Saturday afternoon linger 
in the walls, reverberating off a red concrete floor, 
cleverly poured in a terra-cotta tile grid, and 
scored with fine lines of charcoal-gray, faux grout.
The café tables, pushed and shoved on Saturday 
into unfamiliar groupings, are back 
in their customary spots, each with 
two or four unburdened chairs at rest below. 
Wednesday's voices--tender, serious, 
subdued--hang easy on the air.
"This space is not mine," they seem to 
say, "but I will share it with you."  
Nearby, a petite elderly couple share 
a table for two. (He: espresso and 
an owlish hooked nose; she: cappuccino
with a straw, her sneakered toes 
barely touching the floor.) Both
husband and wife have attained 
an equal degree of baldness. They take turns 
reading aloud from a shiny British magazine, 
exclaiming--just a tad too loudly--over 
familiar names and places, drawing chuckles 
and indulgent smiles from the scant 
handful of students, shoppers, and 
writers scattered about the room.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

The Cupboards (Poem 301)

(A bit of nonsense for you tonight...)

Impatiently, the cupboards 
groaned, all too aware 
their cherry tone, and 
bright brass pulls
had become passé.  
Trembling with impatience, 
they bared all to a consultant,
then panted through 
a painting, and put on 
a bit of bling. 
Darting toward modernity
they sacrificed capacity.
Their youthful glow,
they pray, might hide
the fact that they
have less inside. 

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Monday, January 27, 2014

To Designers of Writing Apps Lacking Autosave Features (Poem 300)

To designers of writing apps 
lacking autosave features:

I want to tell you about a 
beloved poem, and 
my bereavement...
After struggling for hours 
to meet my self-imposed 
daily deadline, I spotted and 
captured the elusive 
poem I was hoping to meet. 
Long and glossy, it slithered  
around my words, curling 
and twisting, flicking them 
delicately with its tiny, forked 
tongue until they draped over
the page exactly as I desired.
Oddly enough, this very 
poem disappeared without 
even a pouf, when my fingertip 
slipped a millimeter and
--instead of 'copy', 
   tapped 'paste'.
In the brief moment it took for 
my heart to disconnect from 
my chest and fall to the carpet 
with a wet thump, my winding, 
spiraling, untamed poem slithered, 
in all its jewel-hued glory, back 
into the impenetrable jungle 
of my mind.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Sunday, January 26, 2014

August, Ocean City (Poem 299)

boardwalk unrolls 
splintering gray runner
mouths gape to
accept wads of 
cotton candy 
crises of disallowed
ice cream cones 
headlined in bold
angry cries spread 
on shrinking towels 
hot oiled bodies 
brown and pink 
planks scuffed and 
polished by decades 
among hats and 
sandals purchased 
at damp gritty shops 
above the vast blue 
sky stark as a faded 
polaroid picture in 
a shell-encrusted frame 
light tang of salt on 
the air shimmering
as far as the eye can see

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six


Boardwalk at Ocean City, NJ 
(photo: by Arabsalam, Wikipedia Commons)

Saturday, January 25, 2014

From Your Window (Poem 298)

From your window, golden 
light paints six shimmering squares
on this pristine snow...
outside, I count falling stars,
my wishes linger like mist

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six



The poem above is a tanka, a 31-syllable Japanese form. To learn more, visit: http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/5793

Friday, January 24, 2014

One More Day (Poem 297)

One more day of sunshine 
on the Sound, of empty-minded 
wanderings, of crossing 
lawns too damp for dreaming 
on, deep glades of kelp that 
wave below the surface 
of the bay, so cold, always 
so cold...

One more day of cedars 
in the fog, black and gray, 
where color used to live, 
a robin and a crow assess 
the day (no scarlet cardinals sing 
on these limbs), remembering 
the silky light of June, 
a profusion of pastel foxgloves 
in her arms, gathered in a 
quiet roadside field, 
making even strangers feel 
at home, until the rains return 
and summer's gone.

(c) 2014, by Hannah Six

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Quilt (Poem 296)

His coffee cup meets the table: crack. She winces, and looks away from his shameful anger. The world, after all, is acknowledged to be unfair and unpredictable; but it is also graced with the gentle, everyday beauty she witnesses from this very window while she sews. With calm certainty, she knows he will soon wander back to her chair. With practiced nonchalance, he'll wrap her in a one-armed embrace and kiss her--first on her forehead, then on her left cheek, and finally, tenderly, on her slightly-parted lips.


Layers, thick and thin,
Married with fine filaments,
Pliant, enduring



(c) 2014, by Hannah Six




(Teachable moment: This form is known as Haibun, a short work of prose combined with a gently-related haiku. And now you know!)