Saturday, February 24, 2007

Sad half sonnet

could’ve been your major
a question asked by scholars

could have been
the day you missed class

could have been
your Mona Lisa smile

loved not is half a couplet

My Bio for Plus Ultra

He was born in California, grew up in West Los Angeles, and moved to Tucson, Arizona in 1964. He attended the University of Arizona where he was a student poet. After the university he entered the food industry, first working as a retail meat cutter and later as a chef. He moved to Almaty, Kazakhstan in 1992 to work as an executive chef for a hotel. He started teaching English in 2003. He opened his blog Yuckelbel’s Canon in 2004. He has published his poetry in numerous magazines, bi-annuals, quarterly’s and journals. He has acted in theater, movies, commercials, on television, and sung in musicals. Currently he is a full time Lecturer in the Language Center of the Kazakhstan Institute of Economics, Management and Strategic Research.

Thursday, February 22, 2007


It was a mess
I didn’t make
sounds on the stair –
dog barking

it was a day
beyond lies
but less, far less
than truth

name me an ugly
dance, naked with
the heart-shot
falling bear

I am the anguish
that answers the door

Saturday, February 17, 2007


The night is huge and powerful,
a dark muscle, massive and bulging,
changing as a hammer hits
hot steel the color of sunset
and sizzling stars shoot
into the blackness of forge smoke.
There is no reason to face this,
she says, and a ship sinks below the surface
of convolutions and ripples.
He takes the bottle with the ship in it
and pours out an ocean around him
drowning till the clouds part
and in the full moon light
the faces of the bobbing, bloated crew
shine with grins.

The diamond of the day had a flaw
and through that crack came the brutal black –
the bulging blacksmith pounding, pounding,
telling all you wanted secret,
heralding in the ample night.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


The poem Mime is for all of you. I love you very much!


I have caressed this
rapturous book of silence
with which to tell you my mind.
Laced throughout are
obscene gestures,
genuinely obsequious,
ultimately polite,
which have prevented us
from touching,
from tracing eternity
along starlit paths of skin
strategically slippery,
here a pearl of spit,
there diamonds of eye light.

Monday, February 12, 2007


What is this stuff called time?
Do rare birds fly near our windows
With a beak full of it,
snatched from the sky,
to stand in our yards
in the afternoon sun
and partake of it,
even in winter when
there is precious else
to chew on?

Who is it
that so has her belly
full of it that she
has long ago
forgotten how to die?

Or worse yet
who has had so much of it
they have grown so bored
that, in mid air,
they fold their wings,
and plummet to the Earth
a small sarcophagus
of disinterested flesh
given up wondering?

Has a little bird,
head the size of the body,
said I can’t bare to start
so long a journey,
folding those yet
vestigial wings?

Do we breed
every billion years
and regret it

Friday, February 09, 2007

Only a question of time

For Luis Benitez

Do you realize who I am?
That is not possible.
I am less me today
than I was yesterday,
I am unraveling like
a badly thought out story.
I am now that piece of
sadistic humor -
the joke time
has told my birth.

Friday night came and went.
Nobody noticed poets;
they sang, they danced,
they romanced ten pinters;
nobody will see
yesterday without
some burden of regret –
fewer still
will understand
what was missed.

If I am different today
is that better or worse?
Is this more of who I am
or less?
Why does pain
and the chance for
happiness have
an inverse relationship?

What can my aging mom -
captain of the ghost ship
full of friends and relatives
only she remembers -
hope for with
tomorrow’s dawn?


Fat half of the moon -
crows fly with Spring at daybreak,
caws fold day's bedclothes

Tuesday, February 06, 2007


Drink the darkness
but don’t stir,
the glass of night
is a long, black silk sheet.

Tired eyes
dart to shadows
but fear the abyss found there.

Sheets of white
remain bright
but the edge of the room
is frosted with moon.

Still teaching after class.
The itch is scratched
with a red pen.