Posted October 5, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,


Here’s the thing–
we must sing
the body electric
and we must trick ourselves
into singing
the body unplugged,

for the mind must be tugged
from reflection (that des-pond
of antsy)
to connection–a circuitry that finds answer
simply in flow–
it tows longing
into a much-loved song
whose minor key records
our humanity, a harmony–if we can but find
its parts–
that need not be studied
to be learned by heart–

But how hard it is to hear the song
of the long view–
the electric without
the body,
the connection without


Another drafty poem that I may link to the open platform on With Real Toads.  Photo taken and edited by me–all rights reserved.


Posted October 4, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,


All that animated the bodies
were their cell phones,
feeble, if metered, febrillators,
vibrating pockets slouched
in cramp
or release,
sluiced or wadded
with the wrong reds–
the workers stiffly straightening limbs
onto gurneys.

Most simply trembled
with aspen desperation,
like the voice that was surely picked up
by the machines,
but some chimed, knelled, their gamelon toll
far too game
for the silence of boom, shatter, shout, shard,

No one present able
to answer for this.


A draft poem of sorts; I will probably link to Real Toads Open Platform.  I wrote it thinking of the recent mass shooting in Oregon; it was inspired by reading an article about the mass shooting at Virginia Tech.  There are too many in the U.S. at this point to sort them all out.   (Photo is mine–ice candle piece by my husband, Jason Martin. All rights reserved.) 

Heart Poem

Posted October 3, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , , ,

Heart Poem

The heart, a coast flooded,
a much bloodied border,
refuses the order
of what is.

Though it won’t let go
to receive (maybe),
though it lays low
so the flood might recede,
though it pleads with shifting sands,
all it knows of land
and sea,
it beats
with what must be,
with what must be.


55 words for Real Toads, hosted by the wonderful Kerry O’Connor.  (Photo–of sky above Central Park, NYC–was taken by me.  All rights reserved.)  I have edited this slightly since first posting but kept to 55 words.

Not Bootless

Posted September 24, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: poetry

Tags: , , , , , ,

 Not Bootless

She wished the time lost
but it kept finding her
as if she were time’s shoe
and you,
time’s body,
and she so longed
for your proximity
that she let time walk her
day in, nights out
even when you
were no longer about,
as if you still might heal her
from afar.

So, paced
by your re-membered
by the weight of waiting, time’s toe tapping
her spine, she who shod time
prayed for it to be waylaid,
as if a foot and not a shoe
might be mislaid,
as if a shoe might just walk away
on its own two feet,
as if its sole might meet,
on some lamp- or moon-lit street, not its shadow, but
its shine.


Drafty sort of poem for a wonderful prompt on With Real Toads to riff off of poems written by students from Ladysmith High School in Ladysmith, South Africa, for a project of 300 poems in 30 days.  (The students blog is called somewhere I have never traveled.)   Mine was inspired by a poem by Verusha Pillay, Grade 10 (a micro poem called “Time Stops”–in which she used the line “He stood wanting the time lost.”

The drawing is mine.  All rights reserved (and, of course, to poem.)

To Jeb Bush Who Says We Were Kept Safe (from a New Yorker)

Posted September 22, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: New York City, news, poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,


To Jeb Bush Who Says We Were Kept Safe (From a New Yorker)

I did not feel it.  Not even as I shut
the windows tight, rolling towels into the gutted
frames, could I escape the smell, the pall
that slithered through the towels, the foul
breath of burning plastic, exhalation of steel
and swivel chair, melt of carpeting, and, against our skin, the feel
of flesh made smoke, ash griming the reflection
of all those posters, pleas for resurrection
headlined “Missing,” as if a person known
to have worked in the South Tower had just gone
for a walk, amnesiac or spree–
Don’t get me wrong–I could not breathe–
but I’ve earned
no right to complain–I was not burned
by a fire ball–

Not even when off the buses
they jogged, assault rifles shouldered without fuss
onto Canal, their camo so uncamo
in a city that wears black, their ammo
rounding chests already plaqued with bullet-
proof vests, faces young as pullets–
the few whiskers, crescent brows, strands
of feather post-pluck–not even as they ran
down the subway stairs in a continuous
booted line, uniforms pleating sinuously
about ridged belts, bulked thighs,
and I, stopping one GI, asked why,
are you here
and she replied, muzzle a diagonal to bunned hair,
to keep you safe–

Nope.  Not then.  Not that whole year
nor some years more–not, certainly, in the grand export of fear–
new carpetings of fire balls, new reasons
for retribution–no, not in that season
nor in the heft of its poisonous web,
dear Jeb, did we feel
kept safe–


A bit of a discursive rant here to Jeb Bush, running for the U.S. presidency, who, discussing his brother’s presidency in the recent GOP debated declared that “he kept us safe.”  I am not sure any president can avoid attacks and conflict, homegrown or brought from abroad, but Jeb’s comment seemed particularly disingenuous.   (I’m also not sure of those last two lines–whether I should simply write “we were not kept safe,” instead of alluding to how we felt, but am somehow a little too superstitious to write it like that.  This process note has been edited since Rosemary’s comment below.) The photo is one of mine–all rights reserved. 

Am posting to Real Toads Open Platform.  Check out the wonderful poets there. 



Phantom Heart

Posted September 20, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: elephants, poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , ,

IMG_3737 - Version 2

Phantom Heart

When I gave you my heart, I gave it for keeps,
though soon you were gone as far as fall leaves
blown on a wild wind, leaving a chill–
taking my heart where you keep it still.

Yet here I’m left wondering, why my chest it hurts so–
with no heart to ache, my breast full hollow.
I fear in your pocket it’s squeezed till it’s burst,
bruised by loose change and pen knife and worse.

Or maybe it pains ‘cause you’ve lost it somewhere–
a one-hour hotel, by a bed that you shared–
where the heart that was mine is half-choked by dust,
the half that is left made sick by your lust–

Oh how could I give up the one heart I owned
to a man whose own heart was harder than stone–
maybe that’s why it weighs so heavily now
that heart that you’ve taken in tow, in tow–
that gone heart that still beats me so–

A ballad, a song, ditty for my own prompt on With Real Toads to write something inspired by the work of Dr. Oliver Sacks.  (Here, thinking of phantom limb syndrome.)  (Sorry to recycle the elephant–and older one of mine–a print made by painting on a glass plate and pressing it on paper.)



Posted September 19, 2015 by ManicDdaily
Categories: poetry, Uncategorized

Tags: , , , , , , ,


Then there’s that part of the brain that speaks in Chopin,
at least my brain, that, at least, listens
in Chopin, whose light-piercing tones–
notes that lift the heart, that dance the bones–
reverberate in loss, incipient,
past, lasting. The brain, made pliant
by the beauty of the song–
the brain that sways its hands along,
bends at its waist, rises on lobes’ toes–
finds itself unlocked by those
toqued keys, slides from arms’ bed
into the flowered mound at coffined head
of a friend, lost–  And how can I be here
and she be gone?  And how can fair be fair?

Except that all will join her soon enough,
or him–that’s you and me and them–no matter how tough
our resistance, how unalloyed
our letting go.  This moment’s would-be joy
can’t swallow the leaded rune,
and the brain’s stretched hands that just had traced the tune
in air, affecting grace, now cover the brain’s face–
or cover anyway that space
inside the brain–that part that hears
a minor croon in every music of the spheres,
that part that weeps
in what sweeps
it along, as if grief were its duty
to beauty, pleasure, life waylaid–
the price that must be paid.



Here’s a drafty poem–I call it that because just written–for my own prompt on With Real Toads about Dr. Oliver Sacks.  (Funny pic is mine; bust of Chopin–my husband’s.) 

I attach below a video (really audio) of Dinu Lipatti playing a Chopin Nocturne.  Lipatti, one of the most wonderful Chopin pianists, died, like Chopin, at a very young age (in his thirties.)


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,189 other followers