LYNX XI:2
June, 1996
This is a small section of the total Lynx issue consisting of 92 pages. If you would like to see the whole beast, send $5.00 with your name and address to LYNX, POB 1250, Gualala, CA, 94554, USA.


A Selection of Tanka

"Blossoms" by Anna Holley

"Yellow Paper Poems" by Tom Clausen

"Coronary Care" by Sue Stanford

"One Flight Up , Third Moon on the Left" by George Ralph

"Moonshadow" by Keiko Imaoka

"Chinese New Year" by Alexis Rotella

"Mockingbird, Weep in Her Voice" by Robert Henry Poulin


A Selection of Ghazals

"Loving Extension Of" by Sheila E. Murphy

"A Minute" by Sheila E. Murphy

"Your Loss Again" by William Dennis

"Strong Vision" by William Dennis

"Ghazals 1 & 2" by Kenneth C. Leibman

A Selection of Renga

"Clay on Your Hands" by Jane Reichhold and Keiko Imaoka

"Behind the Mask" by Jean Jorgensen and George Knox

"One-Line Musings on Forty-Nine Springs" by Alexis K. Rotella

A Selection of Tanka

BLOSSOMS
Anna Holley

strange as
a flower blossoming
in mid-winter,
this happiness I feel
growing in my heart

a single flower
on the moonflower vine,
with no companion
doesn't it too, find
twilight hard to bear?

you blossoms
scattering too soon
don't be sad,
have you not escaped
the pains age brings?

though they say
the blossoms scatter
with unquiet hearts,
theirs seem peaceful
compared with mine

in order not
to sadden the flowers,
don't mention
please, that spring
is a fleeting thing

mistaken for
another stray blossom
scattered by wind,
afloat in the shallows
the flower-white moon

at no other time
does it seem quite
so hard to bear,
aging in the springtime
the flowers and I

does sorrow for
some hidden heartache
make them descend?
blossoms that scatter
without any wind


~*~

Sunday evening
my wife on the phone
with her mother
getting more beautiful
by the minute


can't sleep
without you
talking to myself
about the things
I should have told you

John Sheirer

~*~

Yellow Paper Poems
Tom Clausen

seeing her by chance
I once had a dream about her
years ago -
over time it's taken on
a substance of its own

we live in an age
where just to cross the street
can be a risk -
to meet you I must go
slow as ever

by spontaneous consent
our subtle flirting
has played itself out -
our friendship will be
all the better for this

how it becomes
so long ago, a dream
to remember that night
inside you,
deep in your city

I watch my children
joyfully, little and innocent
of everything ahead -
too much I know,
too much to tell


these days housebound
if only we could agree
to keep our words
silently
to ourselves

how can it be
I have more books
than I can read -
all this time the creek
flows on and on


the trees swell
with wind
this lazy Sunday,
a friend sits beside me
with little to say


a house, family
my health, a job
it occurs to me that
even with all this, at times
I struggle and despair

for years we used to talk,
now to look at you closely
I have a feeling
that I remember you better
as you used to be

my father
used to point out
birdsongs
how his face froze
to listen

leaves blow coldly
this late autumn day
its best to keep moving
and certainly you'll know
how alive you are

years are passing
unable to shed tears
for anyone -
will I wait to the end
to let it all go


CORONARY CARE
Sue Stanford


a flock of white
cockatoos demolish
the geraniums;
squawk on the roof of a house
emptied by ambulance

father in coronary care
(blue neck, blue feet)
recalls walking home from a dance,
torso blanketed in fog
above his head clear to the stars

mother weeps on the phone;
sings how doctors have no cure
for love
how 'golden ring and glove'
did not habituate her heart

I hold this hand
so hard to warm -
remember you built a sled
and set us laughing
down the sparkling slopes of night

my daughters' first tic-toc clock
in the heart of grandmother's
sleeping house -
steady drip of the thaw
hollowing hard-packed snow


ONE FLIGHT UP THIRD MOON ON THE LEFT
George Ralph

soundless sunsetting . . .
treading therefore on moonlight
daydreams scattered through
fresh snowfall: the church bell tolls
each tree whitens, disappears

a flashing moment
of moon snow ice-glinted streets
before winter winds
silence deep-throated hounds' howls
and dark clouds smother the stars

once more walking past
vacant windows in dark homes
not knowing whether
the denizens are out or in
the pale moon keeps flickering

ancient eaves dripping
through mid-January thaw
in pasty moonlight
emerging from rough brickwork
shadows stretching toward us

this moon a sliver
vehicles race past the rim
gray fog descending
to bury the roadway deep
in hollow distant hornsound

vines clinging closely
to the wall and still climbing
while across the moon
dark silver rivers of cloud
hint of an unmapped journey

yellow lantern light
tracing the bone structure stones
forever inert
why do these old pack mules keep
falling? staring at red moons

out of a night's haze
with its moonspattered shadows
in the gazebo
final words fading, darker
under a mosquito's whine

moonfall darkening
the darting butterfly then
the scurrying ant
silently escaping and
still welcoming Mother Death

the birds'
arch singing
I crept
through moonglow
and they screamed

a heartfall
in vaporous fumes
across the
lagoon some moonlight
fastens the mind: wait

on the window
moon and bony maples
scratch
a dog whimpers
at the door

the old house
falling finally
wispy ghosts
rising at noontide
in dust. . . out lost path


MOONSHADOW
Keiko Imaoka

cheeks held
in your hands
searching for love
in the moonshadow
on your face

tears mix
with blood on my lips
the taste of your kiss
forever bitter
and dark

a lizard tail
on my palm
has ceased to twitch
calling your name
I let go of love

hearing my name
I turn
into the breeze
scented with unknown
flowers of the desert

we are still friends
she said
to how many men
behind the haloed moon
thin clouds move on

gathering
the shattered pieces
of a mirror
I send you my smile
friends we shall be


CHINESE NEW YEAR
Alexis K. Rotella

Chinese New Year -
we barely graze their car
in the parking lot -
both husband and wife
start waving their fists.

In the restaurant
a tray comes to our table
of deep-fried toads -
one for each man
who disappointed me.

"Hang in there,"
the psychic says,
"he'll come around,"
but inside
I know better.

Our neighbor's yard
floods again -
she starts dialing numbers
looking for a neighbor
to blame.

After the late late show
that made us cry
the berdache from next door
kisses me hard
on the lips.

Unable to sleep
I hear him pick the lock
tip toe into the living room
to retrieve the shoes
he left.

Standing in the sound
of monarch butterflies
one clings to the tip
of a young girl's
braid.

MOCKINGBIRD, WEEP IN HER VOICE
Robert Henry Poulin

for Nancy Ford-Poulin 1947 - 1996

the time since you departed
stretches
the lone moments I sit dark
room weeping
I ride a wooden horse into infinity

in grief I pass nights
while moon hides: I seek!
wind at my open window
in comes that fragrance
and on it, you, here you are!

riding on the fog
I gallop over pine trees
flying over moonbeams
I struggle chasing you,
wherever now you exist!

blast! you screamed
the pain so intense
in your blue eyes,
I sit on a pine root
watching a clear sky

what has this to do with it?
I love her still
with the passing
I cross over floodwater's arch
walking the miles to get there

the storm of my heart
the wind blows over
lost in love's thoughts
these little weeds -
oh, my wildflowers!

she croons no moor
in mist, or storm:
mockingbird, sing me
the greatest of songs
in her weeping voice

A Selection of Ghazals

LOVING EXTENSION OF
Sheila E. Murphy

Summer thoughts of icicles imprint
voices on the fibers of young skin.

License to use syllables is painted
topaz maybe maybe yarn perhaps gold.

She rinsed her mail in salt water
protectively left leaves to dry.

Night defined by memory elapses
into solo heat that self erases.

He moved where nobody would recognize
his penmanship and started signing checks.

Weeds in the new yard grew fresh and tall.
He, loving extension of his beard.

A MINUTE
Sheila E. Murphy

A minute of the neighbor's abstinence from silence
s enough to last through winter and another season.

Pigeons own this tract of land with houses interrupting
randomness that allows building and brains inside to breathe.

I drink peppermint tea with rice milk sweetened to taste,
as imprecise as breathy mirror with life showing.

Letters no longer physical appear on screen
evolving toward communion bereft of touch.

She recycles wrapping paper which happens
mean less and less each time that it is used.

This the perfect time to orchestrate
what we promise ourselves we will recall.

Homeopathy does not tweak symptoms
the doctors keep bothering to unveil.

My video recorder only plays,
just as few people now initiate.


YOUR LOSS AGAIN
William Dennis
Memory's tiers all lend
The heart their drops to blend.

Your door had hardly sighed;
I lived your loss again.

Age could have saved us; I just
Had to poke in your den.

I'd question Socrates
For you in Plato's heaven.

My birds home on you,
Knowing your hawking reception.

Not even a tent in the sand ...
I'm haunted by home, my friend.

The foolish young Yeats of my youth,
I envy his age near my end.

STRONG VISION
William Dennis

Extinguished, I'll leave, still bright with desire for more living;
I smoke in the socket, disturbing my friends of the evening.

Height, width, depth, curve, color and brightness enter the mirror
Clangorously - insight scattering, judgment muffling.

Love's loosened cinctures slip the veil from beauty;
Exposing the tender eye to strong vision.

Hobbyist husbandry of the heart has grown profitless
For love of heraldic beasts, for love of its native kin.

My dear Asad, as we know, humor and love both are cruel;
Neither phlegm nor bowel, as we have known, is what it has been.

GHAZAL 1
Kenneth C. Leibman

crossing these liveoak boughs in cathedral arches
for matins nones and vespers birdsong

after allnight rain a bloody sun transected
later on more rain and more and more

and on the evening news more blood more blood
and every morning too more blood more blood

after twilight the chuck-wills-widows frantic call
at false dawn barred owl's crazy laugh

the words unspoken under the hidden moon
under morning sun falling into your kiss


GHAZAL 2
Kenneth C. Leibman

the redness of the rose seizes me
the petals drop too soon

in an ecstasy of anticipation
the cat rubs across my leg

oh yes another drink if you please
i need all the courage i can get

slow rocking on the front porch
the song is of another world

kenneth when you find the hour here
it has been gone too long


A Selection of Renga

CLAY ON YOUR HANDS
Jane Reichhold
Keiko Imaoka


opening the door
the clay on your hands
awakens my past

flame long dormant
firing the kiln

a glow on your face
as you speak the old words
kneading, wedging

centered in my palms
cardinal's call

gibbous moon
mouth of a crooked pot
the same size

into the darkness
voices disappear

time warps, leaps
then stops - two hearts
pounding

out the dried lumps
dust hides us in its shape

reflections
in the temmoku glaze
days gone by

earliest vessels are formed
mud pressed into a basket textures

shifting
as the sun rises
her wrinkled face

crackle glaze a success
the rough spot hidden

deep
beneath the burial mound
haniwa dolls

saved in a place of honor
one from the T'ang dynasty

butterfly's dream
caught in mid-air
the monarch vessel

wing patterns in the coils
thumbprints seal earth to earth

pit-firing
with cow pies and twigs
desert night

incandescent with stars
sparks fill the raku cup

such openness
strongly supported
just like her


delicate fingers
shaping a porcelain bowl

what a hunk!
the broad shoulders and muscles
of my teacher

sweat from the brows
joining the slabs

rigid lines
incised with a tool
ah a cool breeze

cycling home at midnight
lampshadow moonshadow

reflecting light
shiny pages of the new book
new ideas

images toss, turn
then burst forth in a dream

rainy day
the underglaze runs
into a surprise

quartz inversion splits
a platter in two

sand in my teeth
plates in the beach picnic basket
also nitty-gritty

details come alive
bubbles in the Shino

orange moon
rising over the canyon
tile mural

warm again at high noon
by the treeless north wall


damp-room
leather-hard sculptures
sweat under cover

growing smaller every day
the crazy idea of the big pot

arms full of roses
he bursts
into my studio

sharing a workspace
sharing a love

Started: February 27, 1996
Finished: March 19, 1996 - Done by E-mail.

BEHIND THE MASK
Jean Jorgensen
|
George Knox

kisses all around
at the New Year's Eve party
behind that mask... who?

her domino suggests
a smile that forbids nothing

a rock falls
the coal miner waits to see
if others follow

the spelunker vaults across
a dark bottomless chasm

dog's waterdish
the entire harvest moon
overflows it

his barn will not hold the hay
he has to bale up the rest

time for some fall fun
they head for San Diego
winter in the sun

couples of all ages
twirl on the ballroom floor

not concerned at all
that my date does not show up
midnight katy-did

tenderly she cradles
her new birthday doll

an attic scares me
I always search for remnants
of my lost childhood

above the stalagmites
hundreds of sleeping bats

serene detachment
the moon's night view of desert
death and survival

light drizzle at dawn
rocket soars off into space

"infinite" cosmos
new galaxies discovered
billions of years deep

he adds and subtracts
using fingers and toes

Rose of Sharon
diurnal blossoms and blasts
wherefore this sadness

scent of new leaves
in the Easter bouquet

May sun
warms her mother's kitchen
breaddough rises

old yeasts are ubiquitous
we learn in home wine-making

cream and mauve
the colors of the bridesmaids'
long gowns

unlocking the old wardrobe
a rush of pent up camphor

crude oil mixed with ice
washes up onto remote shores
dead birds

depths of folly in our minds
older than the glacial snows

for months
TV covers a murder trial
accused gets off free

the heart's autumnal sadness
post-summer surfeit of love

green and gold and red
the leaves in her bouquet
elderly suitors

many species of fauna
mate often, others for life

in the cool greenhouse
cacti cast eerie shadows
harvest moon

praying for a late fall rain
he fails to specify where

fierce desert winds
leaves from afar and screeching
roof top exhaust fans

black antique car
wins first prize at the rally

botanical gardens
winter tours for kids canceled
docent's lonely stroll

woodland buffalo
shed their heavy coats

dwarf Japanese quince
first blossoms white then turn pink
leafing out later

their twin sons
born on the last day of spring


January 1995 - January 1996

ONE-LINE MUSINGS ON FORTY-NINE SPRINGS
Alexis K. Rotella
- for anne

forty-ninth winter tiny lines around my eyes

early spring a solitary nightingale

pillow plumped for the third time where is he?

lump of light brown sugar the sunny breakfast tray

on a Russian linen tea towel rose-garden print

from blood oranges squeezing him juice

made in Italy the most elegant phrase

porcelain eggcup popping his navel again and again

in the old medicine cabinet a faded box of Q-tips

bulging in the realtor's pocket a ceramic doorknob painted by hand

perfect rosettes appear on the wedding cake

sunlight on the Venice lagoon sound of breaking glass

apothecary bottles don't know why I collect them I just do

age brings character at least to crackled glaze

lavender freesia jasmine ah the sounds the mouth can make

after his e-mail taking out handmade paper and sealing wax

already dry in the wind silk sheets

petals gathered all summer this teaspoon of oil

deep waffle pattern of the rug its imprint on our soles

silk charmeuse gown one pearl-drop button then it falls

cascades of rosemary on my evening walk again I have to forget you

a headboard a perch for courting doves

his fingers touch the frosted calla-lily on my eau de toilette

spirit-lifting flowers on the pillow case

sleigh bed away we go

Parisian flea market wooden box from the days of the Czar

linen closet a pink ribbon around each sheet

every bow tied by the spinster's mother

showering together smell of chamomile linden and orange

kilim piano stool right out of Matisse

on the gay priest's garage door tromp l'oeil cupids lift

Colette's paperweight it costs as much as a house

twin maples one infested with mistletoe

paperwhites that moment when they turn too sweet

black crepe-de-chine I wore to her wedding when black was still taboo

no cashmere no velvet under the tree

a jar of lip balm on the breakfast table raspberry taste

stonewashed silk the way it clings the way he held me in it

towels with tasseled fringe from a bath house in Istanbul

a crowd of purple hydrangeas on the nightstand

for cherry pits a tiny mother-of-pearl shell

starfish from the window falls and breaks

book of vintage wallpapers in the attic a dog-eared peony print

chirp of the bedside clock roman numerals ring its ivory countenance

a bouquet of tea roses on the vanity and a jar of green ink

red tulips in a pair of wooden clogs on a window sill in Cannes

both of us on Hopi time we never do connect

All poems copyright © Designated Authors 1996.

Page copyright © AHA Books 1996.

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