Snippets 214, 215, 216

Does anyone remember snippets?

Sure you do. Three-line collage poetry on ATC-sized cards. I started doing these about 4-5 years ago. Read this post from 2014 about the beginning of the snippet revolution in my life – I think you will be amused by what I said back then and how the snippet situation developed since.

But – I haven’t done any snippet-writing (composing? maneuvering?) since 2017. (Here’s the last post including them that I can find.)

Oh dear.

I was cleaning out my collage poetry work box and found these three. Don’t know when I did them. I felt a little sad. And I got the itch to try to do some more of them.

Now, snippet composition is slow and deliberate. I need to cut out lots of phrases and words and then I need to sit down. Slow down. And take my finger and push the little papers around until I get something that gels. It’s like a Little Vine, but slower-growing.

I want to return to this location, Snippet World, and do some more. Yes.

Anyway, here are the three strays. Read them and I hope you enjoy them. They have been waiting a long time to speak.

my finger,
thin and scrawny
I have pointed it

People under the influence
clinging to the truth
of that chalky pink vague story

Tell nobody.
I would Tell nobody.
I can’t wait to tell somebody


From Enough for a Book, published in 2016.


I feel
the strands
I used to hold so tight my knuckles turned white
in fact often looped them around my hands
a few times and now what’s happened
I’ve lost hold of them
maybe they greased themselves up
so they could accelerate through my grasp
or they learned to unwrap themselves
and slither off
all while I was looking somewhere else
I feel
let loose. I feel
I might get lost track of. Please.
Turn around and grab hold
of the strands. I can’t seem
to do it myself

ATC swirls red and off white 3-18 small

Artist trading card, 2018






Bad Directions

From Enough for a Book, published in 2016.

Bad Directions

The highway
pictured on the cover of the road atlas
is a smooth matte black. No potholes no repairs.
No big trucks in the left lane passing little cars
when they
shouldn’t be going that fast and scaring timid drivers.
No gas stations.
How is anybody going to get
without a place to fill up
including you
what if you need
some crackers and peanut butter?
Restless passengers and bathroom stops
clouds promising rain
construction zones with barriers and flashing lights
nowhere in sight in this guide and so I can tell you
from decades of experience with
long car trips
this road atlas cannot be any good.

Sun with sunglasses looking at a car small

Artist trading card, 2014.



Math Study

From Enough for a Book, published in 2016.

Math Study

The students open their notebooks
point their pencils at the pages
covered with figures. One girl
understands the skipping hopping math and her pencil
runs all over the page chasing it down
the other girl
twists a silver ring around and around on her finger
and her math is motionless
possibly feeling poorly
and her pencil will put on weight
if it doesn’t get some exercise soon
but it just stands there.
Negative two is the answer just captured
and written down by the one girl
and the other girl watches and
her pencil is lying down stretched out full length on the paper.

I Ran a Few Numbers small

Artist trading card, collage.




The Familiar

From the collection Look Winter in the Face, 2015.

The Familiar

Eighty miles an hour he says
hanging his jacket over the back of the chair
telling her about the eighty miles an hour
even before he takes a seat at
the tiny little lunch table here in the cafeteria
or puts a forkful of spaghetti into his mouth
Eighty miles an hour
and she seems to know what he’s talking about.

I walked fast, small

Artist trading card, 2015.

The Color Red Is So Brash

From the collection Generous With the Details, published in 2017.

The Color Red Is So Brash

Striking out into the stream of traffic
your two feet mark invisible signs
on the concrete sidewalk
with each step
Bad Judgment
Stiletto heels send you into a stagger
at just the wrong moment
Broken ankle
and whose fault is it?
The sidewalk records
a confused muddle of traces
plus the heel broken off
a red stiletto shoe.


Sun looking at a triangle tree on a red hill small

Artist trading card, 2013.

Sleeveless Black Dress

From the poetry collection published in 2017, Generous With the Details.

Sleeveless Black Dress

I must attend
a fancy party
one month from now
requiring a dress
in a style
suited to a fancy party.
A style of dress
I do not presently own.
with trepidation
I shop. I find myself
meeting dresses
who look down at me
and others
who won’t
look at me at all.
In the end
an alliance is made
between me
and a dress
desperate to leave the store.


Yellow faced lady in a black dress small

artist trading card, 2014


Change Gears

From Generous With the Details, collection published in 2017.

Change Gears

At the cross street
I watch
The pairs of legs
do their
back forth back forth
heel toe heel toe
with amplified intent
and increased tempo
now that it’s started raining.


ATC steps and legs 3-18 small

Artist trading card, 2018.

One-Time Tour Group

One-Time Tour Group

The leaves that are ready, they let go. Today
right now
they are setting off on their first and last trip
just as they’ve done everything else
for as long as they have existed.
The light dry clatter as they cross the parking lot
rises and then falls
when the wind pauses and they settle,
uncertain. No one
is very sure where they are going
They wait,
shifting a little,
uneasy now, some of them.

ATC 2-18 pink leaves small

pink leaves, artist trading card, 2018.