Uncle John Drops His Teeth

ann-sullivan-girl-in-boat.jpgUncle John Drops His Teeth

I dropped m’ teef.”
His lips formed sloppy
where his frown had been.
We shared mutual dislike…
me…a ten year girl-kid
John…seventies ancient…
burdened with each other
that August afternoon.

John…take her clammin’.”
Heat peevish…all of us.
So while the moms and pops lazed
sipping dry martinis on his sailboat,
Uncle John and I sloshed in tidal water
glum, sunburned…mosquito welted.

His lips flopped…”Hep me fine ‘em.”
I searched with my toes…
imagined joke store dentures.
Wind up at the hinge…they chatter.

My toes touched them. “Uncle John!”
He submerged…lost his hat…
rose with his pearly whites.
Clamped them to his mouth.
A wave swelled behind him.
We staggered…fell…hollered…
splashed hysterical with laughter.

“What’ll we do now?”
I followed him all that week.
We clammed…crabbed…fished…
chipped flaking paint.
He took me sailing.
Let me take the Nereid’s wheel.
Let me steer her in cool breezes…
burdens lifted.

Bonnie Marshall

blurred vision


here in a hangar
in oppressive…stagnant air
I pay a visit where above me
dust motes sift to aircraft
there in suspended instants
of arrested flight

below these…parked…
in angled strategy
are salvaged planes
some with human names…
Jenny, George, Enola Gay
Genevieve and Nick

here is neatness…here is order
where no black oil drips
to gray smooth pavement…
and battle disarray is washed
to near vanishing

my viewing hours are ending
and visitors are few…
sound is muffled
here where laughter bursts
are sparse as merriment
in a funeral home

I take a final look above me
and movement blurs my sight…
where barn swallows swoop
and dip and glide and slip and bank…
and amplify regret

bonnie marshall

In Presence of a Rain

Photo Credit: Frank Christopher Talbot
Photo Credit: Frank Christopher Talbot

In Presence of a Rain

In presence of a rain
grey-dry stalks of ocotillo
desert flame pines…
spined with thorns…
slit to leafing.

At their tips bloom
scarlet blossom torches
luring ministrations
of persistent droning bees
and ticking hummingbirds.

Again the southwest desert
sunburns…inevitable… to aridity
and leaves drop…deciduous…
while this spindly evolution
spikes still viable
against heat-wavering blue…
a testament.. to resiliency.

Bonnie Marshall

Lunar Rorschach

Full Phase Moon
Credit: Museum Victoria

Lunar Rorschach

Moon watchers in Buenos Aires
Southern Hemisphere
imagine a minstrel
sitting on a rock
hatchet poised…menacing
a hatted chicken
…or fowl of some sort…
with an imp upon its back
to freeze frame hacking doom…

Shift one-eighty
to a Northern Hemisphere
and a hill in Nova Scotia.
The Moon’s image changes.
There imagination flips
an emoticon in space
…wide-eyed gaze…
to become a rabbit
long-eared and askew
a stare…a distorted hare…

No matter…
for I’m a Pollyanna
so I’ll bask in moonbeams
thrill to the pulse of tides
think gibbous is a funny word
know gravity…is grace.

Bonnie Marshall