I'm standing very still,
in a room of vindictive and broken mirrors and 
they shiver,
fracturing reflections every time I breathe.
So I am quiet,
and whisper to my heart to slow its beating,
to keep the angry glass from shifting it's attention to me.
If I cannot go forward
and cannot stay back
how do I fix the brokenness?
How can I satisfy the maddened creatures
who demand my blood
but whose thirst is never slaked?
I call softly, 
scar to scar,
wondering if there are any other rooms nearby,
where someone else stands scared and quiet,
with a slow beating heart,
and open wounds that cannot be called defensive
if you don't know what you are defending.


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On the plains the bees hang,

hovering in the morning,

as they fill themselves with light,

their wings whirring as the warmth and whiteness rises within them and 

when full,

they fall gold and shimmering into the sky.

And silver scorpions march clicking and flaming arrow bright into the lava springs,

softening and spreading out,

back into the rills underneath,

resting in quiet and in deepness until prised out by the miners

and formed and polished into new life…


And fish with eyes of beaten copper do tail dances across the surface of fountains,

and tigers sing in the tops of tall trees to cajole them into swaying,

and coral eyed crab hatchlings scuttle for rock cloisters, 

where they can spin and dream in the cool dim light and remember what it felt like being a god,

ruling your whole world with claw and carapace.

While the clouds dream of being anchored,

and the cold blooded lizards call to the bees and beg them share the some of the light…


And through it all the skies,

the skies,

drape and billow high above,  

and the moon all hearty and round

fat with night revels,

coaxes the shy sun above the rim of the horizon;

“It’s time my dear…

It’s time to shine.”

And the talekeepers sing out,

“One copper! One coin of copper for a golden tale…”



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Butterfly Brain


“This cruel age has deflected me,
like a river from this course. 
 ~Anna Akhmatova

Anyone who follows my blog or my Chimera Poetry page will notice that I have gone dormant. If not silent – then at the least very, very quiet. Book editing can be blamed for some of it. New book writing can be also. But the actual problem is my brain. A condition I call butterfly brain, where it darts all over rarely lighting on one thing long enough to take form. I leave bits of shadowy shreds all about but nothing you can hold, nothing to pick up to look closer at or press between the pages of a book.

 I recently heard a phrase that I thinks sums it all up – “outrage fatigue”.

The news batters at me daily – and at everyone else I imagine. 

My country has lost its collective mind. Atrocities, blatant lies, shootings, children in cages, suicides, every kind of phobic-ism imaginable, racism apparently become respectable….we have been pushed back 300 years and I shudder to think how long this may last – and how much farther we may de-evolve. Although throwing rocks at each other may be an improvement…


I find myself deeply unsettled and unsatisfied with merely mouthing platitudes to try and express my stew of emotions.

So…I am digging deep inside and scooping up a handful of my poor battered soul rubble hopeful to find some glint of gold under close examination. A small scrap of something precious to share. Something real. I want definitive and comprehensive. I want a magic list with the magic lamp and the requisite 3 wishes (listed in correct order, preferably bullet pointed) that can sort the world out.

I want so badly to be part of the solution, but I don’t know how.  Which part, which solution?  And off my butterfly brain goes again, skittish and too nervous to sit anywhere for long.


Why have we become so furious? Why does rage overflow over everything? A TWEET for heaven’s sake – have you ever heard of anything more benign? Yet the trolls and hate mongers patrol those shores like vicious alligators ready to pounce…and are there in a flash.

Dare to disagree with anyone over anything…..instant conflagration.


Where is the turning point? What finally be enough? When will the world will right itself and let us go back to living? Will it? Will we?


I don’t know.

I do not know.

I can’t fix this, I wouldn’t even know how to try. It all went so horribly, horribly wrong…seemingly overnight. 

(Truth be told, I fear it wasn’t that fast. The horror movie that terrifies you at first….gets diluted each time you see it. You start to see traces of a zipper up the monsters back. Or maybe the actor has just come out of rehab and you read the story and that’s what you are thinking about instead of the carnage on the screen.)


 Maybe the virtuality of it makes it easier….keeping that filmy barrier of not quite real, not quite personal enough, fluttering between us and acceptance.


Or God help us, perhaps we are becoming immune.



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The Pen



It’s the pen that makes me strong,
makes me bold,
and sings those lush and intricate verses into the air…
not caring if they seed storm clouds or lightning.
It’s the pen that guides my feet,
thin and faltering stepping lightly so I don’t hurt anyones 
carpet and can pass unseen and unblipped on their radar.
It’s the pen I say,
sweeping both blame and praise away from me while 
holding the dust pan awkwardly,
some crumbs always slip through,
 but I whistle them away 
and keep carrying the tune
no matter how poorly.
The tune carries the brave face and the pen carries us both,
and I just hope no one needs to set me down,
or drop me,
any time soon.
It’s the pen I say.
I blame the pen.
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Write What You Know


“Write what you know”

they all agree,

and nod gravely.

And if that is true,

if this be the only rule,

then I must drop my pen,

close down my laptop,

leaving the page blank.

For I know nothing,


Not in a mocking, Jon Snow kind of way,

but still nothing.

I can write what I think,

and that is a many faceted stone,

a complex beast indeed.

But to know


is to understand the not,

to understand the already broken,

to let the empty bowl remain purposeless and

let it fall from your hand.

Ignore the shattering…

But all too often my mind,

and my restless whimsy rush to fill those cracks

with gold…


Write what you know.

What about what I can dream?

What cloth I can spin out of nothing,

to drape across the not,

to fashion into a figure I can name,

once named it is known.

And then,

and only then,

(the rules say)

can I write it…



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Rest in Peace Ursula Le Guin. You left us sad ~ but so much richer.


“Only in silence the word, only in dark the light, only in dying life: bright the hawk’s flight on the empty sky. —The Creation of Éa”
― Ursula K. Le Guin, A Wizard of Earthsea

“My imagination makes me human and makes me a fool; it gives me all the world and exiles me from it.”

“We are volcanoes. When we women offer our experience as our truth, as human truth, all the maps change. There are new mountains.”

“Go on and do your work. Do it well. It is all you can do.”

Ursula K. Le Guin On ‘Starting Late’ as a Writer





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2018 or Happy New Year….running a little late.

New Year!

New Me!
Nope, just the old me with new socks…
Ahh well
I am a little more honest in my resolutions nowadays….I mean (eyes wide open) What could I possibly improve on?
Humility you say? 
Just kidding.
There is Much room for improvement but that does not happen by List. Although Lord knows I have tried.
I have created some truly awe inspiring lists….but that’s an obsession / story for another day.
Here’s what I know for sure about me in 2018:
  • There will be writing, there will be a new book out soon (or two!). 
  • There will be traveling and tea and the worst ever puns. There will be sarcasm and tears and laughter and Prosecco and dark chocolate hidden in the desk drawers for “emergencies”.
  • There will be lists.
  • Oh yes…..there WILL be lists.
Wishing you all the best and brightest of 2018 
and, above all, I wish everyone Peace.
~ Jaye
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