New Year’s Eve

in 2019

Bruce learned to ski from up high

into a new life

in 2019

a drain drained our resources

and worsened our debt

in 2019

my girls adjusted again

to life’s challenges

in 2019

we were given the rare chance

to make a difference

in 2019

we traveled through the country

searching for ourselves

in 2020

we’ll make a better life

everywhere we go


like a lost puppy
he waits every afternoon
hoping for some help

i enable him
wonder where his friends might be
knowing he has none

everyday struggles
of left-behind countries, wars
haunt my students’ lives

tomorrow, the same
i’ll give him the look; give in
heart too wrenched for no

i’ll carry work home
(not as heavy as his load)
pray peace will find us


there is no measure
for a refugee’s story
it starts where yours ends

to gather the words
thick Asian-Afro-accents?
world peace in ears

just open your heart
your eyes your gut, God your soul
and you will hear them

bleeding through parties
drives across suburban hell
and comedy works

you will hear their cry
their mothers’ and fathers’ cries
and yes, you will cry

it’s the cry that springs
open the dead ache inside
oft named white privilege

please, measure their words
bring back those crossed continents
good Lord, bring them home