Bus ride

The  girl with the blue hair

the color of the rhododendrons in my old Oregon

neighborhood gets off at the stop

right before the corner lot where the guy

parked his truck when he didn’t want to pay

for closer parking

The squat building that I barely noticed then

I now recognize as a windowed dumpster

filled with sagging poster ads and

haphazard haystacks of PVC pipes

skirted by concrete and asphalt 

the bed for parking spaces marked by phantom lines

price tags for opportunity

A slim steel box stands sentry near the street

to be fed by folded dollar bills crammed

into its multi-slotted mouth

I recall the guy’s chagrin and our 

skinflint’s hike down the scorched but shaded

sidewalks to the ballpark 

where even the cheap seats cost too much

My bus glides by here every day now and I

am thankful that I wasn’t worth the price

of tickets or convenient parking


No ordinary night

Between the covers

Tom Petty lies beside me

Rolling Stone issue

It was a wretchedly extraordinary night. I wonder if I wounded Quotidian when I said I couldn’t see her in her name. Did she slink off like an animal? Did Extraordinary smell blood? She seems to be circling.

In the early morning moment when I was jolted awake by my screeching security alarm, it was no ordinary thing. Even in my son’s voice, which I have known from newborn cry to maturing man. His absent-minded distraction is not unusual these day – a girl is in the picture – but that sacred ray escaped my notice under the circumstances. The screeching was picking up speed, even as my fingers froze.

Then the phone. The calm voice wanted my Password. I’ve never used this password. My brain is packed with passwords.

Before long an urgent rapping on my front door brought me face-to-face with a badge on a blue uniform. Extraordinary is unabashedly mocking me.

 But then Quotidian appeared. At my feet. A tender tan-ish blade-shaped leaf unswept from my porch. She is a fragile and dusty wind-blown traveler. Her ancient heirs are innumerable, but the maiden voyage which landed her beneath my distraught gaze, ended with no fanfare.  She lay there. I spied her.

When the badge was gone, I swept her up with the friends who followed her, and with that simple rite, I obtained my bearings. My faith was restored. We are friends again.