Hope Rides High

Like a bat or a flying squirrel, hope
has expandable wings, translucent
faithful skins, carefully folded.
Hope rides high, counts her chickens,
sees light at the end of the tunnel,
catches all the straws, never says die.
Hope shows promise,
always assumes the best,
paints only the rosy part
of the spectrum, chooses
the most comfortable seat
in the waiting room.

Hope has no waist,
no heart, no brain.
Hope is all legs.
Take away her silent e
and she becomes
the one-legged lope
of the amputee.
Hope free-falls
to earth, her
artificial legs dangle
on long silk cords harnessed
to a parachute that’s never
supposed to fail.

Take away her p, her
forward looking pucker on a big stick,
and she is still gung ho,
a stripper gyrating up and down
a pole, or an explorer
crying Land Ho!
Or maybe she’s just ho-
moecious, a parasite
that never leaves its host.

Take away her h, that trellis
we all climb, and she still chants
with her last breath O
O, lips pursed to remind us
she is the alpha and the omega.
She thinks she has the right
to hang around, tail
in her serpent’s mouth,
all that no beginning and end stuff.
O no you don’t, hope.
What’s that you say?
Get a life.

published 2004

publisher BuschekBooks

category The Thing with Feathers

Full list of Poems


Like a River Flows



< >


An Offering

Controlled Burn

No Need

April Addictions

Some Functions of Poetry

Some Functions of Snow

Digging Out

My Sweet Love


Have you started your seeds yet?

Palmer Rapids



The Thing with Feathers

Hope Rides High

Badminton and the Seven Deadly Sins

Ode to Milk

Said the River – One

Apologies 1

Left over Papadoms

Grocery Store Tulips (two versions)


First Smiles


Elegant Death


When you Love

I Wanna Fly