Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Piles of Books!

 First, I am humbled to have received such a wonderful tribute from a delightful writer, Christie Nelson, author of of Beautiful Illusion, a book that truly should be made into a full length feature film:

Dear Dotty,

First, congratulations on the most handsome and splendid publication of Henceforth/Ask not Good Fortune.  I was enthralled from the first poem to the last.  It would be remiss not to tell you I consumed all the poems in one gulp.  Of course, the night was black as pitch, silent as an empty church, and I was in need of a deep drink of humanity.  Your poems opened my soul and put me to rest.  

While prose writing is challenging, to be a poet takes an extraordinarily special lens.  Yours is that talent.  How many times have I sat in my car at a red light to watch a poor soul make her way across the street and shake my head in wonderment?  How many times have I marveled at unaccompanied minors dance along the sidewalk in my hometown and sorrowed at the children in cages on the border?  Kissing Toothbrushes?  Conversation snooping at San Rafael Joe’s?  These are only a few of my favorites.   

 Hometown Poet, I salute you!

 With respect and admiration,


 Next, here is the box of books, many promised but some still available and of course, always available for sale from Finishing Line Press.


Thursday, January 7, 2021


 Thank to Clare MacQueen for posting this poem in MacQueen's Quinterly:


 Raccoons are funny, even cute in their Lone Ranger faces when you catch them rummaging through the trash you neglected to bungee down securely, even as you run at them with your witchy broom, and they waddle away slowly, sated.

Clowns, on the other hand, are frightening with their fake happy faces and big feet and lots of frothy red hair made out of string. Mimes are a close second. Maybe it’s all that white-face?

At the Halloween party, who is that masked man? Who pretends to know me, to ask me to dance or buy me a drink? Who is sidling away?

Then there are bank robbers, in their pulled-up bandanas, or ski masks. Are they for real, or playing badass with the pandemic? Should I cross the street, or wave hello? Not wanting to offend.

Who wants to piss off a mugger, a stalker, a predator? The Masque of the Red Death or death itself, and what about the ones with the grinning Joker face, humorous or hostile?

And those awful times you forget your mask, walking the dogs, like normal times, until you realize the one strangers are glaring at is you, and you turn away, ashamed, risking traffic, not to offend, to infect.

And the stories about people who cough on babies or push security guards to the floor in the grocery aisle because Bygod! it’s their constitutional right not to wear a mask!

Give me a raccoon doing what it does in the garbage can any day. Safe and predictable. Making the kind of mess I can do something about.

Wednesday, January 6, 2021


 I think this flocking and breaking apart in patterns is trying to tell us something.