Three red tulip blossoms
Return each spring

And we greet each other silently
As we have done for 30 years.


Petals drop
Stems dry

The tulip withdraws within itself
To prepare for reawakening
At its prescribed time.

Charles Bukowski writes…

when a hot woman meets a hermit
one of them is going to

I have not met a hot woman
since I have become a hermit
so I cannot confirm.

But, even at my age,
the possibility provokes
a glimmer in my eye
(but only in my eye).


Ah, you ladies of the night
and you of the day.

All of you.

Back then, I did not know for what you really wished
and now, my age provides immunity and I longer care.

For tonight my comfort lies
not within your embraces

but in a solitary bed
with a single pillow for my head

The Last Poems

A category generally unknown and even unimagined
until the aged poet reaches that place in life
where he disappears into the depths of his soul.

A soul finally unfettered from the chains of youth.

The Face

The face in the mirror becomes less familiar with time.

The image is somewhat blurred in the morning
when my senses are not fully alert and
the sleep crust in my eyes obscures.

Later. it will become distorted
by the fatigue of the day
and will not be the face of my memory.

One day soon, I will stop looking at it.


I watch out my window for the flock of robins
that will pause at the end of my driveway
on their migration north to the breeding grounds.

I see only snow in the air
and ice on the road.

The month is March.
The time of greening
and I grow impatient.


We cannot see
beyond where we are now standing

It is not dark,
merely not lit by any illumination
that will provide sight
beyond where we are now standing.

We try.

We call on seers and oracles
who will ask us to believe we can see
beyond where we are now standing.

They mislead.

There is no light
No fear
No hope
beyond where we are now standing.


We tweak and bend,
slipping down one dark alley and up another
striving to reach the light hidden just beyond us.

The light we will never see.

The Box

The hermit sleeps in a cave with his only possession, a small box. When he opens it each morning, he is always happy to find it empty.

One day, a passing pilgrim shows interest in the box and the hermit, pleased to be relieved of this last burden, gives it to him.

My box is not empty. It holds the envy I feel for the hermit.