Wednesday, December 30, 2009

News Flash

We interrupt this blog's regular programming to share some very sad news. As Santa's crew crossed Alaska early on Christmas morning, Sarah Palin harvested Rudolph and collected her trophy, which now hangs in a place of honour in her Wasilla, Alaska home. Unable to contain his grief, Santa has unfortunately since passed away.

Stop by Arsenisms to read the full news story here.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Ten pounds

Lose ten pounds of belly fat
follow this simple rule
cadaverous is the way to go
they should teach this in school

She scurries to the bathroom
for the thirteenth time today
to void that tub of ice cream
heavenly hash, no way

It’s a long way from heaven
to long for food, to dream of food,
to sleep for food, to die for food
you can’t touch, can’t have,
can’t keep down
must hold on
one day, two days, three days, four
then eat, eat, eat
to swell with food, to burst with food,
greasy lips, greasy chin, greasy
hold on

Lose ten pounds of belly fat
don’t ever let yourself go
bone-child you’re so gorgeous now
your ribs and hip-bones show
Rachel Westfall
December 29, 2009

Sunday, December 27, 2009


I knew you then, caught in hot amber light,
pierced in a fixed position
your look of alarm like that
of a butterfly captive. I knew

that shifty look, remembered myself in it -
the slink-away feeling where you hope
to move just slowly enough to evade attention,
and just fast enough to get away. You’d never

lie to me, you said, fingers crossed
and crossed again to hide
the stink of that lie, shaking thick, dark bangs
over mournful eyes to hide

their certain betrayal, their helpless,
voiceless truth.

What taste was on your tongue?

Rachel Westfall
December 27, 2009

Monday, December 21, 2009

Raven's delight

The angry flight of birds blacken
the late-morning dawn, feathers crisp with frosty breath
an arrow painted by the streak
and shriek of the hollow-boned ones, straight up
and across town to the place
where the orange berries sit in iced clumps, bitter and dry
for their midwinter flesh to be torn
in clumps and scattered, ravens’ delight

Just one man, coat puffed-up blue
jeans frozen stiff, a streak of vomit spittle running down
mouth‘s craggy corner, waterfall or avalanche
caught by yesterday’s frozen night tongue sore, head throbbing
with the racket of those damned birds
up and around this handy snow bank, this of all places
why can’t they go cuss up their mess
somewhere else, must get up and find me a drink

Rachel Westfall
December 21, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

on the first day

She slips into the intersection, small daughter’s hand cradled in her own, packages slung over the other arm

lights flash, some commotion mid-street as two large hoodie-garbed men press a third, smaller man into an unmarked car, several friends pressing close, small commotion, muffled voices, small sound

the man smashes the window, raining blue crystal over the icy street and the big cop’s face rolls into a silent curse then flashes back smooth and calm

and she presses the little one’s hand tight, steering her carefully away, across to the other side of the street, the promise of gifts hanging over one arm, blocking the sight

Rachel Westfall
December 15, 2009

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Saturday sillies

What better way is there to celebrate a wintery Saturday morning, than writing silly poems with the kids? These were inspired by Dennis Lee, and the kids and I came up with them together. We'd love to see your silly rhythmic rhyming creations, so please share them in the comments!

I went to play in the snow
I saw someone I didn’t know
He climbed up a tree
Then he said, Tee hee
Then he started to chuckle, Hoho!

I went to play in the yard
The dog was starting to guard
She growled and she barked
At the sleigh badly parked
On my rooftop, stuck really hard
The fellow was starting to yelp
He started to yelp for help
I did what I could
With my ladder of wood
While he stood there, munching on kelp!
After the sled was freed
I went to the man who was treed
A nut came down
On the head of the clown
From a squirrel, who wanted to feed.
I went to play on the roof
With a horse with a tender hoof
He had to eat hay
And couldn’t pull a sleigh
But he was a wonderful goof.
I’m running out of ideas
If you have any more, I’m all ears
Just type them below
(don’t slip on the snow)
And later, we’ll laugh over beers!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The sky is on fire

This was the sky at around 9:30AM a few days ago. Again, what words can I possibly find to describe it?

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Yukon river

How can I possibly find words for this? It's like a scene from some primordial age.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

We thought of you

For you, long-ago friend, and all the missing women.

We thought of you there
out alone in the frigid air
with your heart
pinned to that tree.
Those sleeves, your hands
tucked in, didn’t make up
for the powder pink
dollar-store shrinky gloves
that the weather only laughed at
so you lit up a smoke
to feel warmer. You were snug
in your jeans, not the best thing
for this time of year
and those boots, they were designed for
shopping malls and department stores
not these grit-worn streets.
We thought of you out there
alone with your heart
pinned to that tree
waiting to be somebody special
for somebody special
hair up like it’s the eighties again
black and shiny, black and shiny
purse studded metal
drooped securely
over one arm.

Rachel Westfall
December 3, 2009