Portrait of an L.A. Daughter

hannah

Her third eye is strawberry jam
has a little iris in it
her eyelids
are red
she’s sleepy
and the milk
has gone down
the wrong way.
I’ve just had breakfast
with the smallest person in the world.  
 
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One-Stop Foot Shop

xray

“We walk with angels and they are our feet.” “‘Vibrating energy packets,’” he calls them. “‘Bundles of soul in a world of meat.’ Early warning system– dry skin and brittle nails; feelings of numbness and cold; these are symptoms; they mean something. I see things physicians miss. “All you have to do is open your… [Read More]

For Gloria on her 60th Birthday, or Looking for Love in Merriam Webster

for gloria

“Beautiful, splendid, magnificent, delightful, charming, appealing,” says the dictionary. And that’s how I start… But I hear her say, “Make it less glorious and more Gloria.” Imperious, composed, skeptical, serene, lustrous, irreverent, she’s marked by glory, she attracts glory “Glory,” I say, “Glory, Glory.” “Is there a hallelujah in there?” she asks, when I read… [Read More]

Barbecue

bbq

—For William Dickey I They were spraying Pepsi and moth-juice on the fire. The mosquitoes, lawn flies and moths dove, flashed and were painlessly consumed. There was applause …we entered. And while my wife was kissed, they clapped me on the back. They wanted to know that I was there. And then I kissed them… [Read More]

Uncle Dog: The Poet at 9

Press Play to Start Audio I did not want to be old Mr. Garbage man, but uncle dog who rode sitting beside him. Uncle dog had always looked to me to be truck-strong wise-eyed, a cur-like Ford Of a dog. I did not want to be Mr. Garbage man because all he had was cans… [Read More]

COLLECTED POEMS 1957-2004

collected poems cover

“What I would really like to say about The Collected Poems of Robert Sward would not be a book review. I would like to say: Listen to this! …”
– from Amazon.com book review  
 
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A Man Needs a Place to Stand

Father: “Snap out of it, son! Yes, of course I’m dead, but you think I’ve left the world? Then how come you’re talking to me? Nu? ask yourself: How is this possible? Listen to me: There’s more good news. That’s right: Death doesn’t separate you from God. This is a surprise? You were thinking there’s… [Read More]