• California Poems,  Poems from the book Barefoot in the Sanctuary

    Participatory Budgeting Poem

    PB Poem This fine city of Vallejo is giving us a choice in the way things go with a budget that is of the people. We get to choose where our taxes get spent, making for more efficient government. If you want to help our kids, the art scene, and homeless folks, too, fix the roads, improve our parks, well, this is what you got to do! The choice comes around every year. Your voice is heard by city hall. It’s absolutely your call! If you’re at least fourteen, living in Vallejo, step on up, and participate in this scene. Get out and vote, then if you want to you…

  • Poems from the book Barefoot in the Sanctuary,  Poetry

    The Freedom to Love

    I joined the Stonewall Democratic Club of Solano County, marching and dancing across Vallejo for the 4th of July parade. This is the poem it inspired. The Freedom to Love Dancing downtown, amid a proud parade of people and partisans, arising in a righteous rainbow, a revolution of love filled these streets for the first time, this Fourth of July, declaring freedom from hatred as bubbles floated in the air alongside joyful songs, cheering townsfolk, and flags waving, red white blue, this year a few more colors, too, me and you, feeling a bit more patriotic when all are included and free to be truly who rings true soul deep…

  • Peace Poems,  Poems from the book Barefoot in the Sanctuary,  Poetry

    Souls Aflame #wearorange

    I joined a group of about 20 menschy folks from my synagogue as part of the #wearorange march across the Golden Gate Bridge, protesting against gun violence. This is the poem that it inspired. Souls Aflame It is good to march. To keep your spirit charged. And so here we are. We pursuers of peace with our souls on fire for the kinder world we desire. A sea of orange drifting across our Golden Gate unified marching against violence and hate. A passionate parade of protesting people gliding across the bay galvanized against the glorification of guns. Chanting clad in electric orange men, women and children who fight and who…

  • Poems from the book Barefoot in the Sanctuary,  Poetry

    Bernie on the Waterfront #BernieinVallejo

      Bernie on the Waterfront It started as a whisper, a rumor, skepticism. “Was he? Would he? Here? Really?” And by evening it became a wild roar, a joyous cheer, with excitement surging through the town, shouting, “Bernie is coming! Bernie is coming here!” Folks who don’t live here might miss the beauty of our majestic little city. We’re number one in diversity— representatives of all humanity fill up our rolling streets. And they said nothing big ever happens in this old town, ever since they shut the old navy base down, since bankruptcy disrupted our downtown, and acts of violence left folks wearing a frown. Thank God for the…

  • Poems from the book Barefoot in the Sanctuary,  Poetry

    #BernieInSacramento

    Bernie in Sacramento Standing sunbaked for hours, achy feet, people in the streets. collecting buttons, lazing in the grass, getting sunburned, hiding cross legged in the shade of the masses, waving signs about revolution and a better future. I think I found the hippie vote. The people who care if you and I can stay a float. I’m in. Bring it. Overheard in the crowd, “The music here is so good. The people are so nice. The hippies are back. All kumbaya. Yeah, songs—that really makes us dangerous!” That felt so much like home that I almost want to say it was a spiritual experience. Gathered in a sea of…