Falling Angel

You plaster your dreads with the skin of serpents
enmeshing a Medusa, compelling society
to look the other way. A seditious struggle
pierces flesh with iron and ink,
rendering the sacred lost
beneath its pledge.
A stigma.
A falling away.

Wingless limbs falter while
sporadic sparks of truth
flint off your soul’s tufted feathers
and fall like tread from your feet
through this nether world
appled in sin’s black veil.

Process Notes:
“Dreads” are dreadlocks. When I was in Ohio we dreaded my daughter Julie’s hair. People treated her differently. One woman actually pulled her children closer to her in a protective effort as we passed. It was disconcerting. Now I think Jules is an amazing young woman, not a falling angel, but obviously this poem contains a bit of her dreadlocked experience.

Visit The Sunday Whirl for more poems constructed around the wordle words below. I used all of the words except hinder. I had it in there as “hindering the sacred lost” – rendering made more sense.

seven years in vs. several months without

Jules readies herself for Stevon
as I damn another day’s driving
to pick up Len at Cleveland-Hopkins Airport
where Len will take the wheel, and we’ll
chatter a scattered path to Rochester
discussing house issues,
reprehensible renters,
curtains, paint, and stoves oh my—
Why did we buy this house so far away again?
It whirs hominess, family.
Trees and outbuildings mark its acre,
a summer kitchen,
an Amish shed.
Pears gild that tree, casting spells.
Its price parted clouds.
But mostly,
impulsivity blessed us both.

We will laugh as Pennsylvania blinks by
then land deep into blanketed bliss
at Henrietta’s Red Roof Inn near Rochester,
reality only a stone’s throw away.


For Stevon’s arrival in Dayton,
Jules twisted and dyed
vibrancy into a white cotton sundress.
The marvel of newly rendered dreadlocks
that buzz with life, animate her shine.
“Only 12 more hours until he gets on his plane,”
bursts forth from percolating dreams of life
in hippy-strewn Missoula
with her hairy man.
Jules’ smile ripples rings toward
tomorrow and yearning’s completion,
while I sigh and scan the clock
wondering how long her couch will
allow me to sleep before I get up
and drive yet again.


I wrote the poem the day before I left for Rochester, to pick TL up from camp. Julie was picking up her boyfriend, Stevon coincidentally on the same day Len flew in, to spend the rest of vacation with us. It was interesting to see her enthusiasm compared to mine. So I explored it here. Julie is moving back to Montana, after being out here for nearly a year.  Her boyfriend is excited, as they are moving to Missoula together.  It’s a new life for them and it’s fun to witness their blossoming together.  After I wrote the poem, I did the wordle and added all of the words to the piece, I like it better with the wordle words. I’ve never done a wordle poem that way before, it seems backwards, but Pamela Sayers did it once, and I always wanted to try it. It was a worthy pursuit.

Please visit The Sunday Whirl for more poet’s use of the wordle words.  The creativity and caliber of writing is impressive.

Boon Waits

A frenzied storm
beats rain against the stone
sides of our house in Ohio.
Thunder calls out its name
and echoes dance down a scalloped
forest of clouds disrupting exquisite stillness,
weaving sky music under rain.

The house shakes and Boon barks.
A sentinel in the window seat,
he waits for Jules and her Jeep
to scream around the corner
down past the silos
back to the village from Ottawa,
and the store that carries his bones.