Posted in Passages


The 1980’s
big hair, shoulder pads, tight jeans
Ronald Reagan and Dire Straits
Gorbachev and glasnost.
Deregulation everywhere, the stock market
banks, savings and loans, marriage,
marriage –
living in sin became partners and respectable
even the drug market
cheap, clandestine marijuana
gave way to proud, sophisticated cocaine
night skiing was what the parties were called.

conservatism was making a comeback.
In our small town a fundamental church had a retail shop
selling bibles, icons and spiritual reading.
in the front display
a leather strap with tooled hand grip
and a quote from Scripture
“ spare the rod and spoil the child ”
the item boldly displayed labelled,
the rod – with a price.



Most of my life has been spent on the bench, occasionally called into the game by extravagance or attenuation. Waiting has turned a loner into a recorder - nondescript and inconsequential, more not noticed than overlooked - the non-vantage point of children not yet considered old enough to understand. Orphaned Islands (Un)poetry is a lifetime of picking anecdotes up and not throwing them away. Stories collected like odds and ends placed in a box in the basement, the garage, the garden shed - uncertain as to what their use might be but knowing that one day there might be one.