A Hole in the Sky

sky hole

For Laura Boss

“Every living thing is turning into something else.” – Ovid

All of your poems that remain unwritten.
Promises to and from family not kept. 
Urn of ashes on a son’s mantle.
Things read aloud to laughter and tears,
now lost in the country of time.

Laura Boss was an American, award-winning poet and a friend and mentor. She was the founder and Editor of Lips poetry magazine for four decades. Laura died on April 9, 2021, after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.


Walt, born 1819. He moved around frequently
but at the end of his life
he settled where I started – New Jersey – 
which has more poetry than most imagine, 
and ghosts reciting from Camden to Newark.

Whitman house

Walt Whitman’s home on Mickle St. in Camden, New Jersey

Poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Casket Rediscovered in Former Wine Cellar

A funeral rime for one who considered

spirits, drugs and zombies in his life

and whose remains in a lead coffin

journeyed from chapel to church wine cellar.

Toast a blood-red wine to his life.



Read more: smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/poet-samuel-taylor-coleridges-casket-rediscovered-former-wine-cellar-180968811/

Picture: The Great Falls


The Passaic River is


on its journey to the sea by

Little Falls


Great Falls

in Paterson, New Jersey

that inspire poets,

lovers and photographers.

My screen shows

a couple on the bridge

we all pause

a moment –


I allow the water

to move them

ever so slightly,

then take the picture.



One Whose Name Was Writ in Water

Here lies all that was once mortal.

An empty page of a short life.

He who wondered “Can death be sleep,

when life is but a dream?” now

knows more than we want to know.


John Keats’ tombstone in Rome

John Keats’ birthday was on Halloween. This poem was inspired by his tombstone. While caring for his brother who was dying of tuberculosis, John contracted the disease himself. He died in Rome early in 1821, at the age of 25. He had wanted his gravestone to carry this one beautiful line: “Here lies One Whose Name was writ in Water,” but his two closest friends added a message as a way to attack some of the poet’s critics. This has always stuck me as so very wrong. They added: “This Grave contains all that was mortal, of a YOUNG ENGLISH POET, who on his Death Bed, in the Bitterness of his heart, at the Malicious Power of his enemies, desired these words to be Engraven on his Tomb Stone.”

On Death

Can death be sleep, when life is but a dream,
And scenes of bliss pass as a phantom by?
The transient pleasures as a vision seem,
And yet we think the greatest pain’s to die.

How strange it is that man on earth should roam,
And lead a life of woe, but not forsake
His rugged path; nor dare he view alone
His future doom which is but to awake.

John Keats