Your mistakes will force you
beyond imagination
to something new.

You will deny your teachers,
betray your influences, turn away
from the past that constrains you.

An accident will lead you to creation.



A dragonfly darts around a water lily

Whine of insects
Meadow grass, thigh-high

So hot the pine boards sweat
In the airless loft of the barn

What relief to sink into
Cold Cobb Brook---

My hair fanning around me.



First memories are moving targets—
what the four-year old recalls,
the ten-year-old may have forgotten.

The processes of recollection
are constantly forming
deep within the brain
inside the bony ridge named for a seahorse.

Tracks lie on top of other tracks,
twisting and turning on themselves,
until we lose the reasons
why we became what we are.



I was death-haunted
and tried not to know it.
I walked along the park’s promenade,
my landmarks hidden in white mist
and melting snow, like a dream
where figures appeared out of nowhere
and passed in silence.

Once Rilke replied
to a tedious business letter,
lay his head down on the table,
and heard the voice resonating in his mind,
Who, if I cried out, would hear me among the angels' hierarchies?
Every angel is terrifying
, he heard,
imagining that annihilating embrace
empowering the Duino Elegies.

Sailing against the wind,
when you capture the resistance,
you can sail faster than the wind itself.

In seconds the fog lifted—
one moment visible
and vanished the next
from a rise in temperature.

Inspiration is everywhere and nowhere,
as diffuse as moonlight,
present as the hum of a refrigerator,
or the silence when the refrigerator
shuts off.