Tasseography Answers But We Often Wish It Didn’t

At the bottom of a chipped tea cup, I watch a far future form from wet leaves.

Hibiscus histories and
Spearmint sagas and
Licorice lives yet lived.

Soggy, soggy our future there
At the bottom of that cup.

Clumped together our future there
At the bottom of that cup.

A woman praying on the wall.
A dragon devouring the moon.

A dying child handle-bound.
A future seen too soon.

Tasseography Answers But We Often Wish It Didn’t

2017 Kansas City Poetry Throwdown

Videos of every reading here, in reverse order:


I may have some thoughts to put out later, but likely anything I’d write would be a variation of WOW! so I’ll probably just get back to the regularly scheduled programming here soon.

To all those that made it out, thanks for making the event fantastic.

To those that couldn’t make it: try harder next year!

2017 Kansas City Poetry Throwdown

Weapons Singularly Ill-Designed For Their Purpose

I am no damned good at golf
You are just the watcher
Me, incapable of swinging a club
You are the only thing that can decide
You are a spent power
You are just a cell dividing toward a better beginning
You are the chiseled, sober night
You are just a disparate figure on skeptical ground
You are a widening weary whirl washing windows while you weep
And I promise you so hard,
So true, so real so you never forget:
I am no damned good at golf

Weapons Singularly Ill-Designed For Their Purpose

The Waterwood Box, 30

Catch up!

“Speak up, lost water-man.”

“Go on, Adam. You’ll be OK. I’ll follow you.” That was Spot’s voice.

“No, Spot. I don’t want to.”

“You have to, Adam. To refuse is to doom us all. They’ll kill us. You can’t refuse. You just can’t. Swim up to the Admiral. They’ll take you to Tiskaloo, where the water-folk live. Try not to talk too much and you’ll be OK.”

“What’s going on down there?” called Admiral Pinch. “Water-man, come on. Let’s get you back home.” Sarcasm soaked his voice.

Adam swam out of the formation and up to meet the Admiral. “Hello, sir.”

Admiral Pinch’s spikes contorted and twitched. He called to the mass of urchins behind him, “He calls me ‘sir.’ Here is a water-man who knows his place.” The other urchins squeaked their approval. “Lost water-man, what do your people call you?”


“Well, Adam,” the spikes twitched again. Adam gathered that this twitching was how urchins giggled. “Shall we make for Tiskaloo?” He squeaked and twitched, clearly delighted.

“Yes, sir,” Adam said.

“To Tiskaloo!” yelled the Admiral. “Let’s get this liquid lung home. One so obedient must surely be missed.” The Admiral barked his urchin orders to the pilots at the manta’s mouth. The four urchins pulled back hard on the harnesses and the manta slowly backed up. One pair of pilots eased up on their harnesses and the manta began to turn. Adam watched the pilots on the fins as they manipulated their part of the manta. He looked back at the school, still floating in their diamond formation. Just before he turned away Adam noticed a tiny, black and blue spot of color spurt out of the formation. He followed the spot until it disappeared underneath him. Adam looked at his surroundings. Hundreds upon hundreds of urchins. Hundreds of urchins and a lost, young man pretending to be something he was not.

The Waterwood Box, 30