The Trouble with Dozing in Parks

“Hey, excuse me?” called a voice.

I jerked awake; and was horrified to find I had slipped into fetal position mid-doze. I pushed myself up to lean, awkward, like some uni-legged creature.

There was a man standing behind the knee-height wire fence which separated Starling Park from the streets of Ranui. He had black pants and a dusty white t-shirt, which revealed sleeves of tattoos. He looked mid-twenties. Arriving at my mermaid seat from the heart of deep sleep, I was confused at his expression. He wore a mixture of concern and immense curiosity; as if he had never seen a female before, or he didn’t know the earth was round and was aboard his first airplane ride.

“Excuse me?” he repeated.

“Yeah?” I replied, leaning back on my arms to balance my posture.

“Are you alright?”

Continue reading “The Trouble with Dozing in Parks”




He walked high
and loose
noteworthy jingles in his gait;
the last was
a pocket of change
from the corner shop
and the first
the cataracts
we politely ignored.

Continue reading “Excuses”


The Sands Tell Tales


The sands tell tales of arduous tracks
of long, lumbering earthy strides;
there are those before me

who have pressed
the sand with leaden burdens
and dragging

the prints of souls unsatisfied.
Then there are

Continue reading “The Sands Tell Tales”


Shell Theory


My praise is but
the catacombs of waves
the stuff of ant children
and young sunflowers.

Waves speak quieter
than I,
and go much further.
I wave,
the whole earth grows—
how my arrogance is so!

Continue reading “Shell Theory”


Wild Man of Swaziland


Buck-toothed and dreadlocked
the wild man of Swaziland plunged sugared fingers
into a bowl of cheesy potatoes.
He shifted his restless feet
for a firmer perch against the mountain scree,
and spat out a hunk of chicken poo.
Plump beetles scampered around his hairy ankles
looking frazzled to existence;
the wild man took but peripheral notice
his attention otherwise committed
to thick fingered unraveling of cheesy potatoes.
Continue reading “Wild Man of Swaziland”


Celestial Gala


Cosmic harmony
dances upon toes,
& the sun which sweeps
arm hairs to spring bouquet,
(so fit for a gala)
keeps time.

Continue reading “Celestial Gala”


A Week of No Trash

The mission:

go a full week, from Saturday morning until the following Saturday, without placing any item into a bin, either a rubbish bin or a recycling bin. Alter the lifestyle for the week to be one where throwing away something isn’t necessary.

This looks like:

  • Eating the entire apple, sans the stem, so I wouldn’t have to throw away the core.
  • Saving the avocado skins and orange peels from picnic lunches to feed to the goats back home.
  • Reusing plastic ziplock baggies with the bulk food bins in markets.
  • Bringing my own bread bag to Il Forno.
  • Not using q-tips, face wipes, napkins in favor of a small hand towel.

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A Case for Willfulness

The sea—

at the lip of which
I sink,
my toes in sucking
black sand perch
the heavy surf swell tunneling
past my ankles

–still hasn’t made up its mind.

Continue reading “A Case for Willfulness”


To Furnish in Reverse


I rearrange
the furniture of my mind.

So much so
that the very chamber
ceases to be furnished—

Empty headed
level in every absolute
I can cartwheel
and headstand
without worry–
an unfurnished apartment lifestyle
suits me amicably.

Continue reading “To Furnish in Reverse”


Black Bird


The black bird
on a black tree
sprouting black

at me; me,
in my blended sweater
wooden bench

my skin dipped caramel
and the glint
of inside lamplight
against my watch face.

Continue reading “Black Bird”


Jakarta Postal System: 1; Josie: 0

I spent my birthday in Thailand, fleeing Indonesia for a week in order to renew my visa for the second half of my internship teaching English in Jakarta.

In Phuket, I watched sunsets set the ocean on fire. During the days, I trekked along the rocky coasts and lounged amongst the stones, staring at the ocean, swishing my feet in the changing tides to cool off.

I made very little effort to engage with the others around me. Phuket seemed comprised of 86% half-naked Westerners doing their best to be Westerners, and 12% locals trying to squeeze money off the eager creatures with promises of “hand carved buddhist statutes made in China.”

Continue reading “Jakarta Postal System: 1; Josie: 0”


That man, there


the one at the corner table
with a steady drip, drip, drip
of the rain gutter run off on the vinyl table
which splashes against his wristwatch,
even I can see the water drops
on his wristwatch
even I, from my middle table,
my table
under the wide awning,
safe from the refuse of rain
that pads the streets with puddles
that collects in the gutters along Lorne Street
and drips,
drip, drip,
upon the vinyl table
at which that man sits.

That man, there
with hair slicked back
slicked so to show
a grey rimmed grimace
tucking lips into cheeks
holding up downcast glasses
which otherwise
down his lowered brow–
but for all that, manage
to cling, limp,
to the tilt of his frown.

Continue reading “That man, there”