Two Birds & a Squirrel Walk Into a Bar

Only it’s not a bar, but a yard. And they’re not walking together, so much as perched in a kind of triangular form, Felipe the crow on the telephone wire, Max the scrub jay on an adjacent line that extends from the roof, and Virgil the squirrel perched on the

Truth & Dare: The Cello Effect

In the spring of 1992, Vedran Smajlovic donned a black jacket and tie and sat down with his cello at a bomb crater in Sarajevo, where the day before, 22 people had been killed by a mortar shell while waiting in line for bread. He played Albinoni’s “Adagio in G

Truth & Dare

A Bird Came Down the Walk Reader, I mailed it. This month I sent a card to a poet in Montana, a letter to a penpal at a correctional facility and a card to my parents. Letters went to Massachusetts and to Idaho. I’m on track to hit my “30

Truth & Dare

What Happens When We Choose Both? Hello there. I jumped ship to this platform after the last newsletter I sent apparently arrived with a radioactive warning not to open it, (apologies to anyone who got that, and thank you for letting me know). So this is my Newsletter 2.0, with

Ode to BlackBlack: Buried in the Yard

O chicken, my chicken. Pale orange eye. Black feathers threaded with blue, Last Tuesday your mortal coil shuffled off Though plenty late, it felt too soon. You laid your blue eggs during George Bush’s war Always one year behind our Coen. Two presidents later, you’re tired, you’re worn, We were

Dispatch From the Measureless Theater

MARCH 5, 2023 “Fingerless gloves, check. Hot coffee with a shot of oat milk, check. Beeswax candle, picture of my children on the porch when they were small, check..” It’s how I began the entry in my journal one year ago today, when I arranged my desk at the Rice

The End & the Beginning

Poetry vs. War, plus a curious chicken First, two announcements:Hodge & I are the featured readers at the upcoming Lake Oswego Author series, Tuesday March 15th. It’s an online event, so you can register here and attend from anywhere in the world, in your soft pants on a couch. We’ll


It is a chilly December day and I am wondering where I might have misplaced October and November. But the last couple of months it’s been a good kind of blur to launch our book into the world. Loaners: The Making of a Street Library is in bookstores and we’re

Because Sun Stays..

My first year of college, I had a crusty professor who taught us Gerard Manley Hopkins’ poem “Spring & Fall.” That’s the lovely poem that begins: Margaret are you grieving/Over Goldengrove unleaving? A week later, the professor opened the class with a smirk: “Let’s revisit our Hopkins poem, which you’ve

Gratitude on A Book Launch, Plus Two Cats & a Scrub-Jay

October fifth is the publication date of our book, Loaners: The Making of a Street Library! You can register to attend our conversation with Omar El Akkad , watch our book trailer and pre-order a copy for yourself and a library patron. I’m at work on an essay for the

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