Diane Lee Moomey – Three Poems


Black Friday at the Ocean

Some of us have chosen not to heed
the siren call of myriad malls that grace
our land, and cluster now atop the shaggy
bluffs by Pillar Point, tidepools below.
Above’s an opalescent sky whose tender

grays I might essay with watercolor;
between, the auburn wings of hunting hawks.
We’re families and strangers walking off
debauch of yesterday, perhaps—that day
of too much roasted bird, of good red wine—

some of us accompanied by hounds
plumper than they were on Wednesday, dogs
made round by treats dropped quietly beneath
the crocheted edges of white tablecloths.
Gifts of obligation for the season?

Still waiting to be found, or were bought
this morning on browsers by early risers deep
in second cups of coffee, or may be bought
this evening when sandy shoes are set beside
the back door, laptops opened, dogs collapsed

in gratitude beside the fire. Later.
For now, bright finny boards are ferried up
and down the crumbling slopes, a girl in yellow
tutu climbs a cypress tree and seekers
of shellfish forage on the rocks following

the tide. Which, today, will reach
its nadir at 2:22 pm exactly.



I’m opening a Brie for you. I’ll set
it where its shoulders, creamy firm, will slump
into the warmth of afternoon, and where
what breeze there is today will carry news
of “Brie” out to the highway, where you may

be driving. Yo-Yo Ma is at full volume
now (in case you’re walking by), and I’ve
opened the Neruda to the verse
that seemed to summon you awhile ago,
and read aloud its final stanza twice,

read aloud his final stanza twice.
And I have trimmed the ivy, cut the spent
camellia blossoms, swept the brown ones from
beneath the pots that cluster near the door
where surely you will knock and bring a poem,

like you did before.


Thirty Below

Beneath the borealis we are wrapped
in down and Dacron, glove in glove. Our love
tonight’s an argument about Intent:
you name this radiance Divine, with rapt

attention point out Heavens’s lights, and speak
of Gabriel enthroned above the Pole,
angelic trumpeting, a shimmering
that knows Itself and you. I must critique,

and speak of plasma and electrons blind
as stones on pavement; senseless proton, photon,
solar winds, and on I talk. You balk;
we’re kept apart by more than gloves tonight.

I think I’d give the whole of what is mine
to hear a single word from your Divine.


Author’s Statement on Beauty

I call it “Beauty” when something stops me in mid-sentence, when the only words I can find are oh, yes. “It” can be almost anything: a curious slant of light on dark clouds, tide-drawn lines on the sand, a pencil line drawn just so on paper, a passage of music, two colors next to each other. A certain face, even bones bleached by the sun. “It” can be the perfect set of words that will seed a poem, that makes me rush for pen and paper, all the while repeating yes, yes, oh yes.

I name it “Beauty” then, and won’t ask “why do I find this beautiful and not that”? but only say to Whomever may be listening, thankyou thankyou thankyou.


Diane Lee Moomey has lived and wandered around the US and Canada, and now dips her gardener’s hands in California dirt. A regular reader at San Francisco Bay Area poetry venues, Diane has published prose and poetry, most recently in Mezzo Cammin, Glass: a Journal of Poetry; The Sand Hill Review, California Poetry Quarterly, Caesura and Red Wheelbarrow. She won first prize and an Honorable Mention in the Sonnet category of the 2016 Soul Making Keats Literary Contest, and first prize in the Creative Non-Fiction category of the same competition. More at: pw.org/diane_moomey