Sunday, March 20, 2022


You may recall, Dear Reader, I have befriended a wild red fox, and in the course of this endeavor, I have snapped photographs and composed some snappy prose pieces. Lo and behold, The Fox Who Loves Me has appeared as a perfect-bound chapbook. It features said photography and said prose. Masterfully published by Primary Writing Books, an imprint directed by the estimable Phyllis Rosenzweig of Washington, D.C., The Fox Who Loves Me chronicles my many encounters with this vulpine soul, in summer and winter, light and dark, dry and snow.

The fox herself, a rusty-red vibrant young critter, continues to orbit me. (Or vice versa: I continue to orbit her.) I see her virtually every day, typically around sunset. In addition to her striking colors, she also radiates mischief and intelligence. An opportunistic omnivore, she chows down on rodents and watermelon wedges alike. When I trot, she trots, we trot; we have jogged together several times. Lo and behold, as springtime has blossomed-forth, she has started to keep company with a bloke-fox. I attempt to conquer my heartbreak sensibly: with sessionable stouts and ales.

Let us sing the praises of Phyllis Rosenzweig. Her press has published authors from two generations of the “D.C. Poetry” crowd. Collectively, these Primary Writing Books—penned by the likes of Doug Lang, Ken Jacobs, Lynne Dreyer, Cathy Eisenhower, Chris Mason, Lorraine Graham, and Phyllis herself—explore the boundaries of poetry, prose, and image. Both a writer and curator, Phyllis has garnered MVP honors more than once: I’m recalling, in particular, the pre-pandemic chaos of an Adams Morgan Day street festival, when she joined me and Rod Smith for outdoor-indoor poetry readings at Libertine and the Black Squirrel. The three of us made a formidable team.

The Fox Who Loves Me checks in at 32 pages, with color photographs. Design by Bob Allen. Author illustration by Emily Cohen. To order a copy of this limited-edition chapbook, reach out to Phyllis [email: phyllisrosenzweig at comcast dot net] and she will give you ordering instructions. This would be a perfect gift for fox lovers and poetry lovers alike.  

Please consider supporting the vital work done by small presses. Without them, we would never witness the evolution of language and story. 

Thursday, March 3, 2022


Poetry. Published by Unsolicited Press (February 2022). 98 pages. Design by Kathryn Gerhardt. Edited by Alexandra Lindenmuth. Available online at Unsolicited Press website, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Books-A-Million. Available in Washington, D.C. at Bridge Street Books and Politics & Prose (Connecticut Avenue).

In a nutshell:

Per the memo recently circulated in triplicate, Metacarpalism establishes new standards for humor, elegy, and form(lessness). [n.b. Future works that don’t measure up will be returned to the factory.] These very lovely strophes memorialize after-sex ambiguities, Beef Pineapple Robots, (C)harm Cities, Peoples Who Don’t Listen to Music, anybodies (sic) named Danish Kroner, and sonnets, although what is a sonnet, everything is, nothing is, whazzzzapppp! You will laugh. You will weep. Simultaneously. Or separately. Kind of like a front flip and a backflip all at once. Or separately. Purchasing a copy will support a great small press. Thank you for your time and consideration. Well all right then. Two sample poems:

I’ve Got That on My Radar

—I’ve got that on my radar.
—Me, too.
—Do other people have it on their radars?
—Everyone has this on his or her radar.

—Remember the days of no radar?
—What was there if there was no radar?

—Heh heh heh.
—Heh heh heh.
—When my girlfriend moved in, she kept her radar.
—More women are keeping their radars these days.

—Do you see blips?
—Only when I stand up too quickly.
—Sometimes when I’m alone, I hear applause.
—Maybe you’ve got The Clap.

—Okay, I’ve got that on my radar.
—Do you have it on your sonar?
—Should I have it on my sonar?
—The sea ice, after all, is melting. . .

—Do you have that on your deep space probe?
—I’m not sure I care for that phrase.

—Does man drum in the woods?
—Do you drum in the woods?
—I have no drum. There are no woods.
—Then you must throw percussion to the wind!

The Emporium of Youth

Seen from another angle as when an area—
station, square—contemplated on a Sunday.
The expression may calcify into a demonstration
of thistle-thorn dismay. By “imagine your face”
I mean “shadow,” your expression itself a shadow.
These colors: sky, stone, graffiti: these colors now.
The emporium of youth versus the emporium
of adulthood. If Person A will ail at Point X,
then Person B will ail at Point Y. (Loneliness
aggrandizes the symmetrical nature of most pain.)
Whereas a big galosh of dirty cloud busts open
a caucus of old doves. Brighten the ticking synapses
versus what warms the solid-state capacity for violence.
These colors: stone, wood, tower: these colors now.
The difference between idling (unit of riverbank)
and waiting (unit of high-rise). Rust, rusty coloring,
what gnaws into our porticos of awareness.
By “imagine your face,” I mean the uncorrected
ritual of love. Or the sliding scale of sunlight,
or the balloting of voices in airshafts and alleys.