Tag Archives: taxes





I could have been born a bird
on a gravel island in the creek,
learn to hide in a small world

before I found the gentle grace
to fly, hop rock to rock
as mother drew intruders off

with shoreline flaps of her white
petticoats, feigning injury,
crying seriously in low circles.

I could have been born a bird
without certainty, without worries
about my death or taxes.






                                    I’m below the snowline
                                    biodegradable as hell.

                                          – Red Shuttleworth (“Cafe With Slot Machines”)

When the taxman finds us,
there’s always the argument
over appraisal of this and that

accomplishment, certain failures turned
skyward to face floating white cumulus
with hopes of a more productive afterlife.

The news is too much, poor excuse
for children’s stories peddling common sense.
No Aesop, not even the Brothers Grimm

can keep the future in bread crumbs—
no little red hens to do the dirty work,
no hands-on tools for grindstones.

When he comes, we may be out in the barn
with friends, dusty antiques with loose screws
he may overlook if the dogs don’t

give us away, so far from the house,
trying to freeze time by supposing
we might have made a difference.