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An Admirer Visits Paul Bowles

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I dropped out of college and flipped a coin, a 1929 half-dollar, and decided if heads, suicide. If tails, a life of perpetual travel.

Stephen King Stephen King

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In the early years, we never got tired of playing Stephen King. We played Stephen King at home and we played Stephen King in restaurants, shopping malls, airports, and hotels. We played Stephen King so much that we could have turned pro.

Three Short Shorts

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When Uncle Dan got sent to the Alzheimer's ward, the ladies licked their lips. Fresh meat.


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The gun is heavy. The tiny women hold it in both hands.

Another Version of My Life, in Which I am Played by Meryl Streep

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Rerunning, now it's published.

My Crush on Daniel Ortega

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Time advances. One space between words, two between sentences. When I'm not working, I rehearse the language of newspapers: teez, pica, reefer, jump, hed, sig.

Baby Hater

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You leave your husband and go to the nursery at 2 a.m., painted so cute, go to them, and that’s the only place you want to be, and there’s no chance to leave, or trust they will be okay if you turn your back on them. They won’t. SIDS. Meningitis. A

What He's Poised To Do

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The man is not happy at home. When he sees his wife or his son, he knows that he should be, but he is not.

That Kind of Body

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I was thin young. There's a kind of freedom to be found when walking around inside that kind of body that allows you to have in this world what's known as a presence. People see you eating but they can't make out what for. You're not going to gain an…

The Golden Moment

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I wait for the small gap of time where the note vibratos into nothingness...

complex numbers

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c = a + ib

A Caregiver's Homage To The Very Old

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When you take her grocery shopping take a list and make her stick to it as she forgets and duplicates a lot She is also very generous and will insist on buying you something I think she cannot live without fresh flowers or plants that are bl

The crack

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I put my mouth to it and said hello hello hello.

If I were dying

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The doctor told me: "You have 24 hours to live. no more, no less."

If You See God, Don't Tell Him

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A wrinkled old woman sat at the table next to me. “Are you a writer?” she asked. “Yes, I am.” “Are you Jewish?” “No, I’m not,” I replied. “Where do you come from?” she asked in her broken English. “Chicago,” I said. “The Bohemian ghetto there, o


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In the present moment, she is there for you. Faithful.

The Look

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He looks in silence and he looks with longing.


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The Trinity boys don’t blame me at all. They know I am not stupid about the world. I am a robust girl. Nevertheless, like everyone else I have limits. I am a clock that winds down.


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She was a big woman, a massive, misshapen tree of a woman, wrapped in a rain-coat the size of a tent. She wore a cap on her head, its beak peeking out, drops of rain slipping of its edge like so many pieces of transparent candy.

Men Don't Leave Me

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He didn’t hug me. He didn’t hug any of us. Instead, he shook my hand, his grip so firm I felt the bones of my hands crumbling in on themselves.


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"... you shake your head and look down as if I am a mongrel dog who has pissed the Tabriz..."

Unpacking Sentences

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This is what I do for a living: I unpack sentences.

So I Wrote Thirty Poems in Thirty Days And I'm Still Not Sure If I Learned Anything Except How To Write Really Goddamn Fast

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be accepted be accepted

I’m Waiting

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All carcinoma/ would be hors d’oeuvres/ for its dark appetite.

Cow Juice

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Theresa stopped speaking to me because I ate cows. This made things simple. There was no conversation.

Unmailed Letter to B'go

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I really detest dating that leads to sex=ownership or to the expectation of it. The men are so quietly demanding, authoritarian, pushy. Who are these nice fuckers? Strays a'hounding. I want to tell them: I have friends, real friends with art agendas.

Coping Stones

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Cahill—Dr. Cahill to those who knew him in his small town in Maine—had decided that his screened porch should be relocated. Wouldn't it be better to winterize the current porch, adding a door at the far end which would lead to a new, smaller porch,…

A Glimpse

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I am everything she wanted me to be. I am crossed legs, chest out; I am wearing a soft white dress—lacy and completely inappropriate to the Midwest, to 2011, to anything about my existence.

Comfort of Friends

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She drove me to radiation, to acupuncture and support group. She brewed me concoctions that smelled of twigs and dirt...

You're Gay? I'm Not Surprised. But Thanks For Telling Me!

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When I was young, my mother told me that J. Edgar Hoover was a homosexual. I don't remember exactly when or why she shared this tidbit with me. This was, after all, fifty years ago. But Mom wasn't a homophobe, so I'm guessing that what intrigued her about Hoover's…