So Big, So Small

The river at night is
a dream I once had.
“He’s made my life so big
Yet made it so small.”
I never ran over the ocean
the wind and the rain stopped me
I could never gain enough speed.
When I dream,
I also dream of the sea.
“Terrible case.”
When she dreams, she dreams
of earthquakes and waterfalls
but never shares at all.
I live on the blankets of
mica shores
and miss the dessert
like always,
yet dreams of thousand-year
saguaros over orange ocotillo flowers don’t reach
under the sheets for me.
Cats are present,
their strengths and weaknesses
make life so big and so small.
They exist over time and space
like the seasons
and will always dream
when we aren’t looking.

for Heidi


When she spoke
She spoke love.
Commands so sweet and short
Her companion heard this lullaby
Lifted their large head so that droopy
jowls and bright eyes were seen
through the veil.
Is there always something hidden?
Perhaps not in this voice–
tired, climbed out of a long
stretch of sleep
patient in the 730 calm
Gently tugging her companion along
Our voices marry undertones of compassion,
emotional intelligence
and memories of graveyards– we sit with each other longer,
fill our cups again and again
and reach out–
unravel worlds of inhibitions,
free every part of our soul,
no longer stare listlessly
without turning the page.
Because once, sitting cross legged for hours, we reread our passages again
and again and again
until the dog with the big
head lifted their droopy jowls
once more,
to ask us where
we truly live.

Basil (with no middle name)


I urged you.
Gentle, kind
behemoth hands to your frame,
small and full of bugs.
They were a test to us.
Everyday intelligent bacteria
reign over the ending–
yet create lovely spindles of joy,
flowers in the garden and the grass you eat.
I worried you would die
and that our long trips up the
mountains would never see us through.

We can head over the Catskills
and try to drag the demons
out of your most prominent ribs
but the journey won’t end there.
You can’t speak to me–
I can’t speak to you.
I just cry out when you’re missing,
what if you did lurk down the foxglen streets instead of
hiding under torn mattresses?
No, you woke alone, trying to tell me the ending drew near.
I couldn’t hear you over the tires
on the highway and the rattle of
dresser drawers.
You survived off dog food remnants
and drool mixed with a little water
while my heart tore open.

On anyday, you run at me after
downward facing dog and remind me
who is the best at stretching and sleeping,
who is the best at spotting squirrels.
You remind me who is always going to curl at my feet
or in my lap after a long day.
And I feel the meat on your bones
and I sleep.
You’re still here.