during November of 2012

seven years after the Storm

i was resident artist at the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts

[and kindly housed by the Joan Mitchell Center]





river runs deep + sometimes high leaving mudtides on dress hems the hues of stories or of aged bourbon in lush woods with blood blues from indigo sweat + tears + three too many drinks a shot over the mark flayed skin on pebble pavements or perhaps bleached bones that crackle underfoot raked at odd angles or leopard spotted like a lost blue-eyed catahoula pup + cypress roots poke at the sky live oaks knot + tumble elsewhere angels with softly folded wings like clean sheets brought in fresh from the sun sob silently in the cemeteries while in the park bells hum + sing in the branches + over the lake as the wind begins to dance seven years after

in the soft grass below tiny daisy stars turn their faces to the heavens + across the city in a café
 four women 
consider their mahjong tiles with furrowed faces thoughtful deliberating as though each move foretold the finite fate of a human life + rattlecan paint  marks on doors and walls from after the storm when seared x codes noted presence + absence + absence though present curls + peels like crusted sunburned skin seven years after

boats + trains hoot call + response the sounds of clouds fly overhead threaded + stitched  by swarming starlings many more than a mere murmuration who swoop + dive a shoal of feathered fish exulting in the slippery air seven years after

trackside in a deep puddle the moon shimmies rumbles + ripples in tune as the train shudders slowly by screaming at cars  playing at roulette  skipping the flashing red lights faites vos jeux geaux saints new orleans proud to swim home make levees not war seven years after

in the park i find a zippo lighter + three fat strings of beads then a white feather drifts from a tree while leaves cling on for dear life seven years after

weaving across town carried upon a purple haze stub toe + stumble upon a labyrinth + wander it wondering about the feet that went before meanwhile

a squirrel performs acrobatics on the high wire over magazine runs relays from side to side


over near bayou the old man grows his garden over the road

seven years after the storm