Saturday, March 31, 2018

What Teachers Earn (Day 437)

My thoughts shift, recapturing 
Home. You were scat singing 
by an open window, saying Oops! 
whenever a song veered off in 
an arbitrary direction, 
or your thoughts wandered 
down the darkened street where 
I lingered among a scattering 
of streetlight puddles.

Hearing the neighbors whispering 
in their beds, I learned that 
our teachers earned less 
than the pale, sweaty man 
who managed the dollar-store, 
and considered bursting 
into tears at the brutal, repetitive 
nature of injustice. 

This is what we like: 
Holding hostage those who hold 
all of our knowledge, because 
they are too dangerous to trust
—except with our children’s minds 
and our own vivid future.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: tookapic/Pixabay

Friday, March 30, 2018

Pointillist II (Day 436)

Breathe hush wind beach fog 
Petal cup hand abundant kiss
Slice green point edge damp
Electric shiver ice steel frost
Marine slough clear shimmer curl 
Breath flow gurgle chime rocks
Bird floral bittersweet wing dust
Knowing warmth wait send tucked

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: Patterns of the superbloom 
at Carrizo Plain National Monument 
Bureau of Land Management/ Flickr

Thursday, March 29, 2018

A Simple Matter (Day 435)

I am told 
  it’s a simple matter 
      to grow old.
To grow old but 
   to want 
      to look
  a certain way
  at younger men
  and be looked at in return.
To want to look 
  at photos
    of people who are alive
      not at the dead ends
      of my long-lost friends.
I feel too big 
  to become so small. 
I feel too hard 
  to become so soft,
too young 
  to become invisible
I am assured 
that even if 
I am alone   which I expect 
I will be    since you left me
there will be 
some charity or other
  to drop in on me 
    as I knit socks by the window.
But that isn’t 
how I want it 
to be.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: Vincent van Gogh, Scheveningen Woman Knitting, watercolor on paper

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

The greenness of yesterday’s grass (Day 434)

They fantasized 
about resting 
on ancient oceans’ 
sticky surfaces,
about finding a path 
their feet would recognize 
as the way home.   
Among the fortunate few 
who could forget 
the greenness 
of yesterday’s grass, 
in the end, for this 
privilege, they were met 
with disdain, scorned 
and rebuffed, but 
they remained hopeful and 
taught their children 
to swirl through the world 
having vast adventures, 
voyages of possibility, 
and when they encountered 
their own ripples, 
swelling like waves 
to wash them 
clean away, without a trace, 
they knew that choosing 
this deafening moment 
is everything.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: Martie Swart/Flickr

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Hesitance (Day 433)

A repression 
of frilly hesitance
velvety fields 
of yes 
when no 
was intended
weep for the generous
fence rails 
from which 
many a comfort 
was upended and fell 
to Earth in a heap 
of sanctioned

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: SimpleInsomnia/Flickr

Monday, March 26, 2018

Sunday, March 25, 2018

In the Second Place (Day 431) the first place, she said 
to the window, the violet desert 
night, her flushed face mirrored 
back in a reflection, where their 
eyes met. And, in the second, 
you don’t even know who I am. 

A swell of annoyance, or maybe 
it was boredom, lifted her off 
her feet for a few seconds, and 
suddenly, she could see herself 
from outside, from out there where 
stormclouds of stars piled up on 
the horizon, where a hot wind 
sipped sweat from your skin so 
quickly you never felt a prickle, 
where that silvery road unwound 
like a mystery, northward, over 
a series of rocky hills.

Outside, where the scrub brush 
met the drive, two glowing green 
eyes appeared like magic. They 
seemed to be looking directly at 
her, shimmering in rising waves of 
ambient heat. She gazed back, 
momentarily unaware of the man 
waiting for her to further explain 
herself. The green eyes blinked 
once, twice—then vanished as 
she stepped out into the evening
closing the door firmly behind her.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: fancycrave1/Pixabay

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Have You Ever (Day 430)

Have you ever come home exhausted from a trip 
to the grocery store right before Thanksgiving, 
having fought crowds of last-minute shoppers 
and carried in bag after bag of ingredients for
the feast—and dropped the bag of flour you just
bought to make pie crusts? The whoompf when 
it lands, the explosion of powder that covers 
everything and hangs in the air for hours so, 
as soon as you finish cleaning, every surface is 
once more covered in a white film that turns to 
glue when it comes in contact with water...?

You are that everlasting cloud.

Have you ever stumbled into the kitchen to make 
coffee at some ungodly hour, barely able to see, 
only to find a damp mass of yesterday’s grounds 
fermenting in the brewing basket? Wrinkling your 
nose at the oddly ashtray-like odor as you upend 
the filter into the trash, you manage to miss the bag 
entirely. Fine grains of wet coffee scatter, bead-like,
onto your bare feet and the kitchen floor, finding 
the most arbitrary and unreachable hiding spots, 
and crunching underfoot for days...?

You are those day-old grounds.

Have you ever invited a friend to dinner at your 
new home, freshly decorated in airy shades of cream 
and white, shown him to your favorite Italian-leather 
chair, handed him a glass of pinot noir, and watched 
in horror as he spilled it? He offered to pay all of the 
cleaning bills, but you graciously refused and, when 
he returned for another soirée, he exclaimed about 
how everything looked as good as new! (Because, you 
did not say, it is.). Once again, he relaxed into his seat, 
and once more his blood-red wine landed with a 
sickening splat on your white wool carpet, thin purple 
veins trickling down the buttery sides of your chair.
Have you gritted your teeth, reassured him, replaced 
your chair and carpet again—and then invited that 
same careless friend back to your pristine home for 
another evening of wine and cheese? No?

Well, my friend, neither have I. 

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: roegger/Pixabay

Friday, March 23, 2018

Words Hit the Paper (Day 429)

The words hit the page differently when 
the light enters my room from the east   

letters tumble and scatter  landing as they 
may in heaps and clusters  later in the day 

I will find an hour or two  when I can linger 
and hold them  gaze fixed softly on an image 

in the middle distance  fingers folding and 
coaxing the rambunctious disarray until 

a gentle thrill of recognition wakes me to 
poem  now revealed in its inevitable form

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: Unknown miniaturist, The Monk Eadwine (c 1150),
 illustration on parchment, Trinity College, University of Cambridge

Thursday, March 22, 2018

This Inert Drama (Day 428)

This inert drama—
winds freeze 
you in place, warm 
on the tender petals
of your eyelids, closed,
face tilted toward the sun.  
Still, from within, 
ancestors urge you now
to run 
from that resentment 
while it sleeps. 
Smart, wiry dogs 
rush to their owners, 
joy crackling underfoot 
like ice in April.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Photo: ulleo/Pixabayu

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

She Wished to Arrive... (Day 427)

she wished to arrive 
before the others 
into a neighboring party
this had happened

why when one is in a rush 
does every road 
suddenly burst 
into garlands of traffic
interrupted only 
by red lights and 
drowsy lumbering busses

that evening it seemed 
all those wide empty highways 
had suddenly shrunk 
down to two lanes 
simply in order to delay her 

stepping into the room 
she was momentarily disoriented
as if she had just jumped 
into a deep hot bath

anyone who sensed her 
anxiety perhaps assumed it 
explained her unusually
perfunctory handshakes and 
neutral cheek-busses
which had always been quite lavish 
as she understood it 
should be among friends

anyone who sensed her
would know just why she was
there and what strange
primal instinct
had drawn her 
like a fluttering summer insect
to a porch light at dusk

she closed her wide lips 
around an olive 
and chewed like a man 
on a thought 
that would normally have 
made all the difference 

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

In memory of Sue Grafton, whose mystery novels I’ve 
so enjoyed, and whose words inspired it.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

No poem. Just an honest letter about my dog.

I am too upset to write a poem. So I’m just going to write. And hope I don’t regret it tomorrow.

The next door neighbor’s dog attacked my dog.

She is OK, just injured. A miracle, considering the other dog is a “Pit” known to be vicious. She saved her daddy’s life (and HE most definitely saved hers).

This is a bad neighborhood, with a lot of crime. Not the kind of place where I spent my life, but since I got sick with ME/CFS, and live on SSDI, this was all I could afford.

It’s not worth it, though. 

Living here is not safe for our spirits, let alone our bodies. I don’t want any of us to live here any more, and will eat 99-cent ramen if nevessary to make that change happen. 

For tonight, though, the dog and her dad are safe and sleeping. And I am laying here, trying not to think about the suffering neighbor-dog, injured during the “prying off” process, whose owner refused to take him to the vet. 

Trying not to think about how the police and animal welfare officers refused to respond to the scene because it is snowing.

Trying to feel safe, and not sad about how shitty life feels right now. Trying to quell a feeling of helpless rage. And to resign myself to dealing with this until we are able to leave.

Finally, reminding myself of the few neighbors on the block who reached out to help by calling the cops, running over with a pry-bar of some sort, and asking, later, how Lucky is doing. The world isn’t all bad.

A terrible photo of beautiful Lucky

Monday, March 19, 2018

Up Three Flights (Day 425)

Sandals landing on wooden 
steps like flat palms 
on drums  she runs up three 
flights and knocks back
humid air  thick 
with the scent 
of undergrowth  sweet 
and dark as late-summer 
midnight sweat on clean 
sheets  thinly sliced 
coral from a corner streetlight 
falling through bamboo shades 
across the bed  and his head 
less peaceful  less quiet 
than she knew  on the pillow 
for now anyway  a place to rest 
her mind when the present 
feels too sharp  because 
understanding is worth 
the effort  but you don’t always 
have to do it in the dark

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Edited image found on Pexels

Sunday, March 18, 2018

All Those Beautiful Places (Day 424)

I was there when 
that small warm bundle 
called life dangled limply 
in your arms a load of laundry 
bound for the line or a chilly 
expression of reticence on 
a face once generous 
as grandma’s whipped-cream 
fudge and fresh-from-the-garden 
berries served sunwarm with 
our breakfast every morning 
the artist doesn’t tell she shows
and deserves a snap of the fingers 
for all those beautiful places 
where magically even when 
there is no peace
there is still love

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: Pixabay

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Infidel Savior (Day 423)

Poverty givers rise cavorting clambering over masses who collapse and fall scythes whipping through spring blossoms like sharp beaks strip off soft bark exposing insects hiding underneath 

Their highest blunders oozes siren words poison to disparate pens unsheaths and sinks his fleet sword’s blade in to the hilt and twists like death on a swinging rope lips curled in a vulpine sneer

Infidel savior poverty giver tilting his resilient hate at guiltless guileless dreamers unaware of his voracious plague growing fierce on their unspoken fears and silent sleepless nights 

That brilliant terror festers under victims’ thin-stretched skin while his beknighted demons stroke and savor fevered brows drooling for a payoff drunk on inbound self-branded hell

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: PxHere

Friday, March 16, 2018

You Say (Day 422)

You say no
more are coming

In the near future
we will see

You’re not finished
chewing, spitting

But you can’t make
red out of blue

No matter how
you rearrange things

One man only
speaks in lies

Millions more 
will bear the cost

Only one man
knows the truth

Losing side won,
but, winning, lost.

(c) 2018, by Hannah Six

Image: US Dept. of Homeland Security/
Wikimedia Commons