Four tankas

Bindweed in the hedge, /
Nasturtium on the leaf pile, /
Owl glides on soft wing, /
Am I—I ask a stranger— /
On the way for The Ostrich?

A poem

Once in a summer at haying time, /
My uncle Dave and the neighbour— /
A coarse fellow in bib overalls /
Who shat in the barnyard among his beeves /
Whenever the urge took him— /
Gave me a pitchfork and said to come along.


You don’t see praying mantises much any more. They’ve disappeared, along with grasshoppers and crickets. I remember them from my childhood in Brooklyn. On hot summer days occupying a place on the sidewalk, indifferent to everything, waiting and still, a little frightening in their composure.