Unravelling and weaving, sometimes simultaneously

Passe Pour Blanc

What does it mean

to be a color

to be defined

not only by your percentages

and lineage

not only by your culture

or who’s your mama


but by the tone of your face

the lack of contrast on your hands


Who makes the judges of these things

who gets to pick and choose us

and conversely how do we

decide if we will play along


No matter  how much cream

you put in the coffee

there’s still a hint of the bean








and I’m reaching here

reaching for the projected identity

imposed upon each one of us

depending on our looks

yet predicated on our blood


What game is this

what five-finger fillet

are we playing at


from generation to generation


holding up paper bags

to each other’s faces

to our own


(c) RCGA 2018


Oh heed, oh heed, my sandwich friends

this jeremiad of lost bread

and not even in the style

of pain perdu,

but instead the ruined and violated

slice of soggy whiteness,

once pristine,

yet taken on its virgin journey from the loaf

by the swaggering snort of the mustard bottle

dribbling musquirt along her tidy skirt.


Oh, horrid villain!

Oh, cupidinous son of vinegar

muddled with the seeds of despair!

You have destroyed me,

along with the pristine sheaf

of half my wished-upon luncheon,

your drool committing unspeakable sins

I cannot bear to consume.


My heart is as crushed as those mustard seeds

that created your solution,

solute resolutely clinging to the container,

solvent freely evacuating its confines,

no matter how much you are shaken,

no matter if stored upside down;


your grubby molestation of that innocent slice

has caused me grief inordinate,

and lo

my tears are mingled with your effluvia

as I cast the sad remains

to the yard birds who circle…


and even they won’t eat it.



© RCGA 2018


I’ll be honest with you.

I still believe

in love and all that folderol,

in romance and

in passion,

and in long lives holding hands…


Despite that I have had no luck

in keeping what I’ve found,

and I’ve had lots of love, my dears;

they just aren’t still around.

The flavors still reside

at the edge of my tongue

from every kiss and sweet word,

every salty neck,

each long conversation

vertical and horizontal.


Some were simply transient by nature,

and there’s beauty in that ephemera;

whether we knew it at the time

we were making sand castles

and blowing soap bubbles

and chalking the sidewalk

with the nature of our love.

Some didn’t fit properly

when we tried to move together,

mismatched parts or broken gear wheels,

lack of lubrication…

and we left each other

on the rubbish heaps of our memories

for someone else to find.

Then… then there were those

who were the Solomons of my vineyard,

our time like lyrics manifested

seasons of sensation and delight,

both daily grind and magical moment,

two wolves, two crows, two swans…

too soon

I saw them cross the veil;

wine spilled in well-ploughed furrows,

lost vintages,

and then

where do you go, from there?


I will admit, I still dream color,

warm embraces, darkened eyes,

the scent of morning on the sheets

tumbled in the night before.

Somehow, I’m not as brave, now, though,

a bit more timorous in action

than that young girl or woman was

who sought her satisfaction,

and hadn’t a thought for here and now

or what tomorrow might or might not be,

only the cup of another’s mouth

and the drunkenness of love.

It is as if by having the best

I am somehow quite ruined for

what passes for it on the fly,

and fearing I may not find it again,

I pass the quaff

preferring to be dry.


© RCGA 2018


I watched a butterfly today,

her dip and float,

her flutter by,

those stained-glass wings

held up by autumn breeze

both widely spread as sails,

lit by the gentle beams of sun

dappling the afternoon flora.

So empowered by release from gravity!

In flight, though brief a life,

made stately in the graceful flit

from bobbing flower head to dangling blossom

round about the garden.

I sat, grounded in single shape

a-wonder at the transformation,

at the transport on display,

where once a being who knew nothing

but creeping and climbing

dreamed of the sky,

and wove that dream into a time capsule

that freed her to the blue.

selective focus photography of monarch butterfly perched on marigold flower

Photo by Katie Burandt on Pexels.com

RCGA © 2018

Sometimes an Angel

Sometimes an angel

is not what you think


Sometimes you are asked

to stretch your perceptions

around a little miracle

or intervention

and you think it will tear

you think it will rip you

from the inside out

to expand like that

because you imagine

reality is the only thing

that makes any sense


but it isn’t


and you can stretch

a whole lot farther

than the boundaries

of what you’ve been told


Sometimes an angel

is a stray cat

or a clearance item

or a dollar on the sidewalk

or a flower on that same sidewalk

emerging from a crack


Sometimes an angel

is the person who pays your ticket

in the drive-thru line

or the one that makes you be late

so that you miss an accident

or whoever noticed you forgot your lunch on Friday

and put it in the freezer


Angels are generally anonymous

but sometimes they are also

happenings rather than beings

sometimes they make you stretch

and it’s the good kind of stretch

that teaches you

how flexible you are

how much room you have inside

you’re much bigger on the inside

than you appear


Sometimes an angel

is not what you think

and the wings you feel brushing you

lifting you

embracing you

are part of your inside

stretching out into the world


(c) RCGA 9-9-18



White Wing Owl

How can it be,
brother of dragons
and companion of owls,
that here I am
a noisy, dark-plumed bird
still spinning in the sky
around your memory?
I recall your amber eye,
the tilt of your head
against the blue,
the smell of your sweat
in the sea breeze
intoxicatingly familiar.
We shared the wind.
There were no excuses
for our fealty
as it happened such a way
we did not notice it,
until the hope surrounded us,
and we belonged;
the swirl of yin and yang,
a little of you in me,
a bit of me in you,
around in the blinking sunlight
until you disappeared.

(c) RCGA 2018Snowy Owl and Crow

For Mani: 5-30-49 — 5-1-08


It has been too long since I have seen

an ocean wave, a mountain peak;

it has been too long since I have gazed

upon a vista’s raw mystique

and felt my soul lift in my breast

in joy and ardor, finding rest

amidst the raw and gravid plains,

or out amongst the ruddy rocks,

upon a high place, valley spread

before me, full of grazing flocks.

It has been too long, and I must go,

because my spirit tells me so.


© RCGA 2018

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