How do you safeguard your free time? One of the greatest things about my lil’ ole blog, is that I get to postpone housework to do it. That, or sometimes I write poems while washing the mirrors in the bathroom. But mostly, I put stuff off, and I think that is noble. We all make sacrifices for our art, and my clean house is one of them.

By all that you hold dear, on this good earth, this is how I think you should treat your laundry:

I would like to sweep the kitchen. BUT NOT THIS DAY! I would like to clean the bathroom. BUT NOT THIS DAY! It would be nice to pick up the living room. BUT YOU GET THE IDEA!

Today I will poem, selfishly and attentively, so that later husbandpants and I can watch a movie.

I don’t really know what the poemspiration is for today. It comes, a little from thinking about my time in Missoula, the greatest of mountain towns, from treasuring the friendship of my teachers, my parents being the greatest of them all, and from believing that of all the people who might read this, they believe in me as they do themselves. And because of this:

I hear this, “I am haunted by waters”, and I know that someday, I will be too. Fishing after funerals.

I believe this to be true, too, that “the world is full of bastards, the number increasing the further one gets from Missoula, Montana”. Word.

Thank you, oh merciful professors of poetry and Trout. Hmm, Lord of the Rings and A River Runs Through It references all in one fell blog. Good day. Good thing I’m not vacuuming.

Today’s effort comes from fishing, and Montana, and the Grizzlies. Blessed notions.

This poem is for Dad, who taught me to cast wide and slow, in the rhythm of ten and two o’clock, just above the surface.


Trout Mouth

The dusk of my home waters call. Come, cast wide and slow, they say.

The mouth of Trout Creek on the Clark Fork became Trout Mouth, in our sibling lexicon. We had no idea that we were along to provide respite to our mother. We thought they created the biggest adventures just for us.

We were given the lesson of a dead or dying whitefish to build pools for in the shadows.  Granted the blessing of scales and small teeth and strange eye films.

Wet your hands before touching the body, to safeguard the scales of the impaled.

And be mindful of the right hand behind, keep a good distance from the brush, to avoid snags.

These sharp hooks.

Don’t skip stones or shout near the angler. When boats come and park in the water territory, then you can shout and skip them away. We built rock towers and rubbed willow resin into our denims.

He has work to do, the work of grazing the pink sky with an insect, the work of enticing fins, the work of forgetting and memorial, he is working at play. Even now, with shaking hands and fading eyesight, he plays, and the play is a teaching.

The line disappears, at times, in the yellow settling sky. This water is our church. It is noble to catch and then let the release happen. The grand stunning takes them brief liquid moments to shake.

The dark was the only hastening, and holding stick wands we trudged back to the dirty car over sand and stones and a heady river scent. Driving home we gathered the biggest lesson inside,

that all creatures rise,

hungry for shadows.


Hi Daddy. Love you. Thanks. Happy Saturday, Poemfish. Love you, too. There’s a bit of tense-switching going on in today’s effort, and I think it comes from an earnest desire to be there, again, everyday. I was and am this love all at once.