Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

Category: parenthood (page 1 of 2)

we inspect each bug
the blue magnifying glass
makes us scientists

my yard work helper
throws mud, laughing

high forties
running through sprinklers
in filthy pj’s

Natural History

Maybe it was the medieval
music, the darkness, or your young
age, but when we stood in front
of the Magna Carta in the museum
in Houston, you clung to my neck.
I don’t like the Magna Carta,
the Magna Carta is scary
you whispered. I suspect it scared
King John too. Like you, he
probably would have been much
happier in the paleontology exhibit
with T. Rexes and Pteranodons, their
fossil teeth and mighty wings frozen,
stilled and silent. Somehow less
frightening than the freedoms
that old treaty began, freedoms
I know you’ll someday demand.

we study the leaves
fallen beneath the oak tree
they’re brown, he says

a gray stone
shaped just like the moon
in his pocket

afternoon’s treasures
bang in the washer

he scribbles
a sidewalk chalk moon
whirling wind

Inspiration from Angie Werren who’s using full moon names as kigo this month. “Whirling wind moon” is passamaquoddy.

bundled in coats
we watch the tigers eat breakfast
my son whispers meow

Fragments at Qarrtsiluni

A year ago, while trying to stay awake so as not to drop my newborn son while on shift rocking him through the wee hours of the night, I jotted some of my thoughts down on my iphone between games of Words with Friends and reading blogs. I tried cobbling them into a poem but when I saw qarrtsiluni‘s call for submissions for the fragments issue, I sent the notes and looking at them a year later, found I liked them as they were. So apparently did the issue editors, since they selected the piece and published it yesterday as “Notes Made on an iPhone while Rocking My Son to Sleep, July 2011”. Thanks Olivia Dresher and Catherine Ednie for including it!

It’s funny looking at this a year later. A little over a month ago, the baby disappeared and there was a wonderful, curious, active toddler in his place.


sitting in the tub
my son

grasps at water

tiny wrinkled fingers


he stands in his crib
smiling and waving at me
where have ten months gone?

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