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The book The House of the World has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize and is now available on Amazon.


I have read about extinctions.
How the plate was wiped clean,
the wall lost all its graffiti,
the ocean swallowed all its dreams.
They say the Earth was visited five times.
That life began again,
like five great resolutions,
got up on its knees
and wept in the ashes
of unfinished stories,
the scattered remnants of disappearing tribes.

I can see the great tidal basins
coughing and dry,
the land hard as adobe,
the wind like an aimless panther
running on the ridge,
the ochre of its eyes
for the first time frightened.
So too,
I have braved extinctions.
The irreducible loss of a face,
a sound that spoke in poetry,
a hand that held blessings in my own,
and knew the small extinction
of a larger whole.

So I have read of Earth’s fate,
and its fate to be,
and we are one,
this old planet and I.
It’s best perhaps
to buy a doughnut,
have conversation over coffee,
greet the sky thoughtfully,
and accept extinction
like the morning paper.
Sometimes it’s late,
but it comes.

Published inIndex of all Poems