points west

Some days,

I miss the hinterlands

some days

when the inland rains

don’t let up

and the gators

have snapped at the

last golfer on the course

in West Palm Beach

and the biggest python snake

in the world has been captured

in Kendall —

swimming in the pool

of a famous – but now

disgraced athlete

and the most informed

newscaster in the nation

has rushed to

Miami Beach

to report on the latest

scandal involving

some pseudo-politician

…it is then

…(and only then)

that I long for the plain pine bench

in the birch grove

on the shore of

some Lake Woe-be-gone

six miles southwest of Hibbing

…the one we used to sit on

when we were both nineteen years old

and we would both look west

far past Fargo, and Bismark,

…not stopping there…

on past Missoula and Couer d’ Alene

raising a toast to the setting sun

believing that it held the answer

to a tough question

that neither of us dared to ask

both of us thinking that if we

could just

watch it drop below

the horizon

on Venice Beach –

– just one single time

that our lives would change


time spent

When it’s late at night…
… 2:45 AM
and you listen to the wind
blow through the palms
on Singer Island
and the wind whispers to you
that the past
17 years have been
a commercial success
in spite of it all,
remember that,
the damned,
fickle, late night wind


Lying to you
telling you that
you really haven’t lost
3 homes to foreclosure
and that your position at the
brokerage —

the one that was arranged
by your cousin Sid
was simple destiny
yours to use or abuse
and the time that you spent
for two and a half years
was just time
owed the pensioners
for your sacrifice
at the hand of the
consummate professional,
the ultimate Satan
although it resulted…

…in the destruction of
your constitution
…the dissolution of
your marriage
…the demolition of
your soul,
(although not necessarily
in that order)
but in the end
your time
in Federal Prison
was a walk
in the