09 December 2008


Pieces of you get left behind.
Ripe dandelions on a windy day,
stragglers by design.
Pieces of you get left behind:
your skin, your breath, your imprint on my mind.
Sometimes I wish the whole of you would stay.
Pieces of you get left behind
as ripe dandelions on a windy day.

07 December 2008

Methodically walking because it’s the only thing I know how to do
as I contemplate leaving you.

I know you’re not the one but I still want you to be.
You’re too different from me.

I just want someone to love;
to love me.

To hold hands with down the street;
recite poetry.

But don’t cover me, nor devour me
or make me feel incomplete.

Life’s just not that neat
even with all the straight lines I see

as I walk from line to line
on the squares of sidewalk.

I gawk at the way we follow lines:
the crosswalk
the timeline, and tick-tock, the clock.

Even the cigarette in the hand
is a line to our death.

Oh nonsense, nonsense, none of this
makes any sense, like the yew and the moontree,

some great powers that be,
an inverted universe

where I am a poet
and the lines follow me.

Samantha Kolber
from 1/17/08

23 October 2008

I Think It’s Sort of Amazing

With the wind at my back, the points of yellow stars always point to you
as if the punt in the bottle coaxes the wine from the neck.

Sometimes your mind won’t stop, not even for
a moment, not even to take in the shift in color in a cloud at sunset.

They say the whole is greater than the sum
but I wonder if greater is better...or worse.

The sky that just sits above your head as an offering:
some silence is peaceful while others are awkward, drinking

wine the color of crimson and blood, like oceans after
a feed, rolling through folds of a tapestry more colorful than you can possibly weave.

Ruled by ways we can’t understand, the not knowing a weight on our shoulders,
and maybe, just maybe, all that came before, is all that will come to be.

24 August 2008

Words like branches reach out to the sky;
Poets always walk alone and wonder why.

Poets always stare too long at the beautiful:
a child, the moon, a blueberry bush so full.

A random lady in front of a Friendly's
bends to touch a white flower, its green leaves

point up skyward.
Again, I see that metaphor, awkward

of life and beings all reaching up
as if to grow from bottom to top is not to give up.

As if to write about it makes it so.
My son says don't write about me though.

He asks, Is it about these crayons?
It is now, but way beyond

those four basic colors, red, yellow, green, blue,
which can't even capture you.

The riper of two fruits to my taste
is a man's words that fall from so much haste.

All this desire I try to feed,
my fingertips stained from picking blueberries.

A Sunday afternoon, a day almost done.
A poet almost satisfied with what she's begun

to articulate, to communicate:
a fishamajig on a plate,

a few french fries, the still blue skies
and something from deep within that plies

through the waves of black ink crashing down on the pages through this pen.
As if writing in a booth in a crowded Friendly's is a way to find my Zen.

20 August 2008

Divine Light wants to pour into my head through an opening I am not sure I want to admit exists. If I am open, I am vulnerable. If I am closed, I may as well be dead.

05 August 2008

Epiphany at the end of a poem (or at 2:39 am)

This is what a poet must do: make the invisible visible
a thought, a feeling, an idea
only poets see these
fly as a bird, run as a wolf, stand naked as a tree.

02 August 2008

Red Dragon Breathing Flames

No one says the word baby and I
Place the box of tissues over the magazine cover of a round belly
I know she saw, the one unsterile detail in the room, the
Red dragon breathing flames,

Like the suction hose and speculum full of blood.
Her belly licks of stretch marks and scars,
Some fullness holding tight to walls
In that high tower, as if waiting to be rescued

Is a bad thing. No one knows the strength
Of princesses: women concrete in naïveté
Until it’s time to swim away
On white, fluffy clouds. On bubbles.

And she holds my hands too tight
And we fill the room with chatter
Contracting to anything
Born from the night and given to the light of day.

No one sees the curls of her hair stuck to her forehead
Or the brown bark in her eyes turn to water
To nurture the severed roots
As her fingers spasm in odd waves with the pain.

Definitely no one sees the secret muscle
Too deep inside layers of anatomy
Being tugged and pulled to almost weeping, and
Kahlua-colored iodine cold on thighs, which

Even the cotton balls can’t soften.

01 August 2008

Origins of Sweet and Salt

Sweet sap of Earth and trees
of land-locked lines rushing through
the orange plastic, running into
buckets, oh fill thy cup with sweet sap of Earth
boiled and taken to holy shades, cooked
and poured raw over fresh-baked buns.

Salt water of Ocean and cavernous depths
of the space between what land we see
what lands we don't, oh Mother Ocean,
borne of her amniotic waters, pulled into her
tides, her mouths, her great, powerful surges
what salty dangers wash us clean, and what do we offer her
but littered shores?

If only we could combine the two.
It would be like a chocolate-covered pretzel,
we'd suck and bite its sweet-salt pleasure just to enjoy
that moment.

06 April 2008

My Two Selves or Like Having Two Seasons at Once

The scope of winter things:
the baby in the bed,
frost on the windshield;
a low pervasive hum is Spring

as silent snow falls and gathers unseen.
Just last week the moon hung low in a pale blue sky
still and more silent than night.
I wished for green

instead of last night's dishes in the sink.
There was the sun showing,
my rhythms, like plants, turn to its glowing,
a miracle on the brink.

I used to gather sticks for my survival
now I buy four loaves of fresh rye,
an engine idles nearby,
a street corner's revival.

There's stasis in the daily shuffle:
people, kids, papers, things, dust and dirt
move back and forth like love and hurt,
move back and forth between home and work, it's awful

how a Self can be divided.
It takes a child to show that life's alright
look at the shadow of the spider in the flashlight
it's here I am mom and poet, united.

14 January 2008

Stolen Kiss

Time can always have blue,
the night star,
the white anchor above my head.

But not my heart
or my feet that leave the cobblestone
to jump into your embrace.

I curse time!

I want the weight of you.
Not just your hand like a delicate shadow
on my belly.

Not just your open mouth on mine,
your scruff on my neck,
no, this won’t do.

I don’t want pieces of you.

I want the cool finger of vision,
your hands down my spine,
our bodies wading shallow,

naked in a reflective pool.
Like two puddles coming together,
the meniscus of our

crescent shape
returning from the waterfall.

On your lips I tell you this,

taste our stolen kiss.
You don’t hear me
through the rush.

09 January 2008

A Place to Curl Into

Recently I found a dead mouse
in the toe of my son’s ice skate. No, I’m sorry,
dead isn’t the word for it: Decomposed.

Forgiven any semblance of a life form or body, just

Dark, downy fur in tufts and
tiny, white dollhouse bones. Dried,
papery shell-skins of maggots. And, oh, the smell!
The stench was deafening, or whatever the word is
that means impairment to your olfactory sense.

Deafening and maddening yet I inhaled it
so that now the mouse is part of me.
Particulate pieces of its body
now inhabit mine.

We all want that place to curl into

be it a shoe, warm house, or someone’s
pair of lungs with its many winding passageways.