See Books for ordering information on my latest!
I’m so thrilled that my second collection, The List of Last Tries, is approaching its completion. I’ve signed off on final edits and the book is headed to the printer at Sable Books.
May 5, 2:30 pm: Reading from The List of Last Tries, with John McCarthy, author of the new collection Scared Violent Like Horses, at Book Stall in Winnetka
More details to follow, but I’ll be part of the RHINO reading at Evanston’s New Year’s Eve celebration!
Hello out there in radio land–
A few readings coming up! Please come if you’re able. I’d be so happy, for real–
Friday, September 23, 7-9 pm with Tupelo 30/30 Poets: Arts + Literature Laboratory (ALL), 2021 Winnebago St, Madison, WI
Saturday, September 24, 5-8 pm with Tupelo 30/30 Poets: Danny’s Tavern, 1951 W. Dickens, Chicago, IL
Thursday, October 13, 7:30 pm at book launch for Amy Strauss Friedman’s Gathered Bones are Known to Wander: Women and Children First, 5233 N. Clark, Chicago, IL
Saturday, October 15, 2-3 pm: Vachel Lindsay House, 603 S. 5th St., Springfield, IL
You were dishonest, say—
you did something wrong,
were grumpy or even bad to
Say your wrongs took place millions of years ago
and you are now a teenage girl.
Can it be real
that you are the cause
of a needless fall
millions of years from now?
Can you believe that how you rebel—
you, a teenage girl—
will someday need to be forgiven
by the granddaughter
of another time?
Your family believes
you make your own luck
and it’s wonderful, your family
and what they believe.
But you are apart from them
and their fantastic hopes.
You say Forgive me every day.
(Source: Conscience Letter 322 and unnumbered letter from 13 January 2014)
Get Rid of the Moon
not far from us
The moon rocked in turmoil
On our honeymoon
we lived to be killed
(Source: Conscience Letter 466)
Why I Do This I Do Not Know
It may be perfect.
I have never unwrapped the color I craved,
never taken the crystal from my pocket.
What if I looked and was satisfied?
What if I saw and was afraid?
What I have, I keep.
(Source: Conscience Letter 228)
being a true Christian,
forgives me constantly
for my wrong doing.
I am not the same as my husband.
I am against
lessons learned the hard way
I replace guilt
with a better thing
and keep it hidden
in my bra.
(Source: Conscience Letter 83)
Since Then, the Ghost
Each week worse,
a piece of wood
for burning hope.
My life frightens me
Years ago I had children
and a car and possessions.
Now I know not much of anything.
It’s overwhelming to look at
what I had. What I felt destined to have.
I claimed I had children, right?
Don’t I ever change for the better?
(Source: Conscience Letter 352)
When I burglarized my business,
I stole my briefcase
and embezzled my own story.
I have insurance on my own loss,
for it will be
I paid fully for my grave
and a curse to top it off.
History attests the obvious:
I own the lost.
(Source: Conscience Letter 285)