Geri Digiorno







Geri Digiorno is founder and director of the Petaluma Poetry Walk, going into its 14th year, and Poet Laureate of Sonoma County (2006–2007). She is author of White Lipstick (Red Hen Press, 2005) and I’m Tap Dancing (Norton Coker Press, 2007). Her poetry credits include Paterson Literary Review, Bogg, Tomcat, Haight Ashbury Literary Journal, 33 Poetry Review, Cyanosis, Noe Valley Voice, Lips, North Coast Review, and Sonoma Mandala.







the juke box keeps cutting on and off
the repair man has come and gone
in the morning and during lunch time
and we still don’t have any music playing
the thing sits waiting dark and silent
like a bad omen
we call again desperate to get someone
then around two in the afternoon  this
small rugged looking guy comes in
carrying his tool box drops it on the floor
throws himself down and rolls under the box
lifting it up like he’s wrestling the thing
suddenly it lights up like it knows
this guy recognizes his stubby legs and fingers
like it’s paying attention like it knows somebody
that knows what he’s doing
the whole machine lights up and starts playing
macho man by the village people  after that
Stan the Man (as we call him) with magic fingers
knows that box like he knows his own mind
sits at the bar smiling orders a draft beer
and gives us a wink
you got to respect and love a man like that





I see my husband
sitting in cafe’s
in the crowd,
still young
and handsome,
serious, thoughtful,

not the devil
with the pale blue eyes,
the aught, the jokes,
the teasing Irish,
but rather a young man
with thoughts on his life.

Someone sitting at the window
of the coffeehouse drinking it
black and strong
the way he liked it.
Someone wondering about his life,
the mistakes he made,
worried about his kids.

Maybe I’m thinking of all this because
my daughters have found his people
over in England,
maybe he likes that.

He has a thoughtful look,
like that photo
when he was a little boy
and looked like an angel.

A face in the crowd,
not smiling or joking
or kidding around,
always the same look
and right at me.





I stand at the back of the car
the trunk open
pulling at silk blooms
pink blossoms
and one red fuchsia
in a tangled mess
a surprise like you

I straighten out the
pale green stems
work on the leaves
twisting them into an
almost believable leaf-shape

if you were here now
we’d be up in san francisco
eating pasta and roast beef
with a glass of red wine
at bruno’s on mission street
dancing every dance
you laughing and talking

I’m still here
but you’re not coming back
and the bar is gone
only a memory of the
regulars who filled the bar stools
and feed 50 cent pieces into
the juke box to hear
Frank or Ella or BB

the back bar burnt to a crisp
slate black bottles still
in their place
a toxic smell of
burnt plastic and booze
the carpet crunching underfoot
the pool table the guys from PG&E
talked you into
half burned away but still standing

a brightness coming through
a portion of the roof
lighting up the cash register
like we were still in business





tony and me are looking at property
up around nevada city
a nice  half acre
with a mobile home on it

the realtor is holding a stick
moving it along the ground
both hands seeming to guide it
he’s looking for water

he stands in complete concentration
his face half-tense half-relaxed
he stops in an open field
full of wild flowers and weeds

there’s water here he says
six  ten  feet down
probably an underground stream
i’m awed

i never saw anything like this
the stick is moving vibrating
like its plugged into a socket
we’ve stepped over to another world
of belief or hope
our city-selves standing there  in disbelief
like two strangers
wanting to look back to ancient times
to rely on instinct  to believe
to  listen to the earth










Articles similaires