August 6-26, 2007: Diane Elayne Dees and Tod Duvall

week of August 6-26, 2007

Diane Elayne Dees and Tod Duvall

click here for submission guidelines

Diane Elayne Dees

Bio (auto)

Diane Elayne Dees is a writer and psychotherapist in Covington, Louisiana She recently burned out after five years as a liberal blogger and now publishes a women’s pro tennis blog, Women Who Serve Diane received two Pushcart Prize nominations for poetry last year She has poetry recently published or forthcoming in The Raintown Review, Mobius, Umbrella, Out of Line, and the Syracuse Cultural Workers’ Women Artists Datebook.

The following work is Copyright © 2007, and owned by Diane Elayne Dees and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.

Highway Scene

The fox, all bones, can hardly stand
up to eat the duck it has killed Meanwhile, other ducks swim
around the hospital lagoon, geese
ruffle their wings, and an egret
picks lunch from the ditch
by the highway Patients
in wheelchairs go in and out
of the main doors with their families,
children ask for bread to feed
the ducks, an ambulance slides
into the emergency entrance Doctors and nurses consult
in the doorway I am just yards
from my office, and stop to call
the hospital information desk “They’re not our ducks,” the woman
tells me The fox is suffering, I explain;
it may be rabid “They’re not our ducks;
I don’t know what to do ” I call
animal control, and later, the fox
is gone, but the half-eaten corpse
of the duck lies near the highway,
on view for anyone who takes the time
to look out the window, as cars speed
to get to the hospital, the doctor’s office,
the insurance company And the golf
course, where, not so long ago,
the foxes’ bones were covered
with flesh and fur, and the ducks
belonged to everyone, and no one

Parallel Parking

Writing poetry is like parallel
parking The driving instructor
told me I was lucky I could see
my way into the classroom
and my parents should get my eyes
checked But there was nothing
wrong with my eyes–there was
something wrong with his eye test Depth perception, the instructor said Depth perception is needed
to parallel park I believe to this day
that my depth perception, as defined
by the driving manual, does not exist I do not know how many inches,
how many feet, how many yards
I have to spare before I crush metal I am an expert parallel parker And though I am not an expert poet,
and still struggle with feet and depth
perception, I think, from time to time,
of the instructor and the manual
and the eye test, and how I can squeeze
my car into small spaces, and glide
it out like a blue bean zipped from its shell,
though–even now–I do not understand
anything about parallel parking.

Tod Duvall

Bio (auto)

Tod Duvall lives in Cincinnati and is a scientist A product of 1960’s SF, I retreat in an inner utopia of music, color, and love I currently hurt in a world of inhumanity The in-between is obsolete

The following work is Copyright © 2007, and owned by Tod Duvall and may not be distributed or reprinted in any form whatsoever without written permission from the author.


save us from extreme wear and tear
the deadpan hours herald another passage
smudged in the blue cold plume
of an idling motor coach
a turnkey plea
powered out of passion
the road of life

expose our kissed fume
excuse and send us shank-end of the fellow
re-layer of shale whatever remains
the rubber that sped a generation
the claim of a cold grey metal

my father’s sleep

From a distance he signals
through steady overbreathing My father’s Wordsworth, feels more closely
the casual forty beats a minute
somehow sustaining I linger in
the unfamiliar stillness
of a Saturday afternoon
Of my own dream i’d wake you
and slowly you’d emerge
the man we knew Your gapped-tooth smile
showing all the innocence you still
possess The crescents of the eyes,
your talent for affection Your hands,
the attenders of sorrow

But father, your sleep reduces me
Your essence escapes
in every passing breath

Feel me here Ready to accept the years
you never chose as yours Slowly i’ll
become the simpler Jesus, in boyclothes The life you gave,
lending you a savior

But don’t wake, 
just yet
Let me bless as only a son knows how Without
symbolic hand-waved cross Without
the lighting of a candle Without
a parody of prayer
Let me simply be here
when you wake, Father,
and show you the stare
of unconditional

children of the marble
.Visit to the Wall, Washington, D.C
Your days were many
of the lovely thoughts of children
grown around you suddenly here

Mending in their touch
your simmer of desire
spent to drift a darkest marble

Tell me
One last time, 
My only given brother,
The reason why you could not stay
And hid in what seemed paradise
Reaping all your softest features

Withdrawing us the bone
And where we once lie in our home
I’ll rise a thousand times
To hear the children of the marble
Screaming to return

Where rather than a monument
We’ll forge for them instead
The promise of a lifetime

As well tended and preserved.

Subscribe to our weekly Newsletter: