Third of Three for Jane


Postcard from the Pillow


the world i have discovered

is full of more than sunsets and dreams

are not the only reason for being

sorry to leave you to sleep without me

supporting your head (if i had feet

i would stand by my decision) the world

is full of leaves and waking people

not limited by the fading colors

of sheets not tucked in and

not apologetic i am travelling

through a world so full of skyscrapers

and fireworks so full so full I bet you

wish you were here


Photo by Jane Kokernak.

Part Two for Jane


What the Pillow Said


All my life since the factory

I have lain on this one bed,

Cushioning the dreaming night

Visions of this one young man’s head

As they wandered through

The dizzy saturation of pictures–

Friends, storybook monsters–all blue

With memory. My job was clear

And without significant interest:

Make a soft place, put up here

And there with drool or even

The occasional murmur or snore.


So when he moved out of the dorm

I saw my chance and, leaping

From atop the laundry basket

Of despair, I fell. Keeping

Company with a telephone pole

For the last three nights and days

Has been eye-opening (or would have,

If I had eyes). Cars drive through haze

Into a future I could not imagine

Back then, before their journey showed

Me possibilities for adventure,

Before today began my life on the road.

Poem Written on Company Time #1

This poem is for Jane Kokernak of Leaf, Stitch Word, who saw this sight and wondered what I would make of it. “I don’t know why,” she said. “Because I write about weird shit,” I answered. “Oh, that’s true. You do.” Natch.


She asked me why a street might need its own

Pillow, off-white against concrete, light

And fluffy when compared to tar, all crabbed

And broken from wheels and feet and packages

Dropped, lives dropped. What moving student

Dropped the pillow, distracted, overloaded, and

Eager for freedom in a new space of his own?


No matter. No man’s pillow now resides here

In no-man’s land, as everyman tramples this

Sidewalk, proceeding from home to work,

From bliss to worries and woes. The sidewalk

Itself wearies from the eternal sickly glow of

Streetlamps, damp leaves, cigarette ends still

Smoking themselves. The sidewalk longs for sleep.


Now, Jane, send me the picture and I will write the other half of this poem…