Crows At The Park

Like a family at a picnic

They were trying to be together,

But they didn’t get along.

Well, not completely.

Tolerating each other’s presence, they walked about and

Checked out the scenery; stood at the edge of the river

With hands on hips, making polite noises

Watching lily pads float.

Then someone found a good thing

In the garbage. That’s when the trouble started.

They argued and pulled at it until the biggest one

Flew away with it in his beak,

But it was too heavy, and he dropped it…big mistake.

The rest of them swatted it with wings and stabbed at it with

Talons, until a breeze came by and blew it into the river.

They stared after it

Making side-ways glances at each other

Until it was forgotten

Because some new smells drifted across the campground.

They flew in circles

Landing in the branches of pines.

Except one, who still paced the shoreline

In the shadow of the picnic table

Knowing he could get it back if he tried.

© Diane E. Dockum, Just Beyond The Hill, 2008

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The Tintype

The Tintype


She has no smile,

And possibly, she thinks

Her corset is laced too tightly


Her hair is

Twisted in dull bunches

Above the ears


The starched high

Collar cuts under

Her chin


Her lips are rigid

Holding, holding

Until the flash powder


Blinds her, she blinks

But we do not see

She smiles


Too late for her great, great


Who stare


At her image


For their own faces.




© Diane E. Dockum, Just Beyond The Hill, 2008


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Birdie, Birdie, Birdie

What are those birds

That say, “Birdie, Birdie, Birdie”?


Wouldn’t it be nice

If my bird book had sounds?


Like instead of


It would be



Oh yeah…

That would be

The internet.



© Diane E. Dockum

April 18, 2014



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On My Way Home

I am driving home from work

Yawning most of the way

The separation between work and home

Closes at 45 to 50 miles per hour


I pass by car dealerships

And a few houses that need repair

Several hundred feet of wetland

And cross a railroad track


The car bumps over the rails

I look down and around the curve

A deer is standing in the tracks

I worry the train might come


Now the road inclines

Past an old drive-in movie theater

That is now a used car place

And a dog grooming place


Then there is a car repair place

And lots of woods

And a dirt road

And a Frito-Lay storehouse


I pass by cornfields

I pass by a field full of wild turkeys

And many more deer

To the bend in the river


The road becomes a hill

A curving incline

I look down through the trees

And see the river getting rid of its ice


I enter my village

Decending the hill

And I see there is still a Christmas Tree

In the living room window of a house


This is odd, I say to no one.

Some giant dogs play in a driveway

And I signal to turn onto my street

And in seconds I am home.


© Diane E. Dockum, April 17, 2014

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Finding Altars

From room to room

I wander

Noticing the altars

Of my life


Built unknowingly

Pictures placed just so

Incense burning

In gentle prayerfulness


Books arranged

With no seeming order

Only the one

In my mind


I see with opened eyes

Reverence for my

Wake, and the passing

Of my energies


Into those who will follow

After me, and look also

Upon the shrines

I’ve left behind


by Diane E. Dockum

© 5.25.2003

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Entering the Forest

Entering the forest

Without moving the grass

Unfailing power

Dispelling the darkness


Igniting the colors

Revealing the secrets

Nothing is hidden

The soul surrenders


Entering the forest

Without making a sound

White light cleanses

The air and the ground


Let the light in

Open the path

Walk in the sunlight

Like on the first day



©Diane E. Dockum, April 15, 2014


Entering the forest without moving the grass


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Fog creeping through the cemetery

Crossing the highway

Forming a wall of white mist

As the waterlogged land meets

The cooling twilight


Setting sun fills the sky with fire

And in the shadows of leafless trees

Creeps the fog

Over rolling pasture

Over the long slow hill to the river


Prowls down through fields

On panther paws

Hiding the long stone walls

In the encroaching darkness

Veils the brown undergrowth


Curls down into the waiting laps

Of ancient trees

Who wait patiently on the sloping bank

And begs a bedtime story

Without words





©Diane E. Dockum, April 14, 2014









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