Thursday, December 20, 2018

American Product

The nihilionnaire American
president swells like a boil
full of white-supremacist pus.
His central capacity
is rage, which no amount
of hatred and greed
can dilute. He is an American
product, promoted and sold
and deadly.

hans ostrom 2018


Pavement is silence
and rain is noise.
Air is a mystery
filled with solutions.
Trees are anguish;
factories, disappointment.
I've heard the music
that results from your playing.
It is less interesting than
you, and who can blame it?

hans ostrom 2018

Unhappy Meal

The soup is thin
and dejected. I console it
while spooning it up.

The bread is dry
and rigid like an
angry pastor.

I introduce it
to the soup,
baptizing it,

and it softens.
The wine's eyes
are bright with tears.

It misses sunshine.
I sip it gently.
This food is sustenance,

I must not complain.
But I cannot deny
that this meal

is in mourning. So
I leap up, kind of.
I flee in search

of a rich dessert
or a witty woman in
a red dress, or both.

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Winter Work

I got used to working most Decembers.
Shoveling snow. Washing pots.
Pounding nails as a carpenter's laborer
between semesters. Once we framed a house,
in sparkling sub-zero weather, High Sierra.
It was oddly exhilarating, though after one shift
I slept so deeply before supper, I
woke up stupefied thinking it was morning.

Then came decades of reading
final essays written by exhausted
college students. Ritual academic
labor, not hard work but grinding still.

This year I'll stumble around
in garden beds, grabbing dead
soggy stalks and seizing final
weeds. Not labor but gesture
of toil, enough to pump cold,
rinsed air into old lungs
and get me feeling sympathetic
to all the people who have
to work shit jobs in the cold
just to get by.

hans ostrom 2018

Loyalty and Sincere Is Me: A Spam Poem

(found poem)

i'm Rose a
single lady positive thinking,
good heart and kindness,
easy going and playful
person, Honest,
loyalty and sincere is Me,
I hate lie and cheat, looking
for nice person for
friendship Take
care Rose.

hans ostrom 2018

Spring in November

November day, Pacific Northwest--
and Spring came back. It sobbed
thunderstorms, slammed sunlight
into steel clouds, lobbed lightning,
and lit up the sky at dusk like Magritte.

From dark roadways and dim ground,
we may have smiled. Hard to tell
in the Age of the Grimace. Anyway,
Spring knocked a lamp over as it stumbled
back into seasonal order. Across
a muddy field, December
stared like a weary wolf.

hans ostrom 2018

Sunday, November 18, 2018

The Rack of Seasons

What a rack of seasons
that was. In January
I fell backward into snow
and was almost buried. Noise
left the world. Someone
pulled me up and tossed
me into Summer, where I
heard a rattlesnake,
broke boulders with
a sledgehammer for minimal
wage, and drank cheap wine,

which tipped me over onto
Spring, where I caught a cold,
grew anxious, and hoarded
books, which opened up
into October, where I stacked
the last haul of firewood--
dry oak from dead trees.
Acorns pebbled the ground
and the North Wind
began to say No.

hans ostrom 2018

Music of Our Days

Behind the high green
muscular hedge (laurel),
a tall black Doberman
holds his howl mournfully.

He hears the red sound
of sirens. It hurts and disturbs
him. Self-soothing, he howls
again but at the end

of this extended note, he
moves the moan up
a half-note. The sound
is unexpected, artistic.

He is called Caesar, this
tall sad dog. Praise him.

hans ostrom 2018

Friday, October 19, 2018

The Matter with Matter

It rolls on. It
rolls over itself as it
rolls through itself.

How could our relationship
to it--matter--be anything
but terrifying?

Terror may be
the original spark
of myth, ideology,

religion: To explain
elaborately so
as to defend ourselves.

Christ, you think
(if you think Christ),
I'm already dead. 

hans ostrom 2018

The Sea Has Its Say

Seas always have their say.
Winds and rivers, too.
They're preparing new things
to tell us, even as
we think we've heard it all.

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

October Figs

Finally they've changed
from hard green knobs to small
soft purple pouches, veined.
Inside they're vegetative
geodes. As filtered through
O'Keefe and Lawrence, they
may amuse you with vaginal
likeness. That's fun, but anyway:
harvest. Their deep brown stems
are so soft now, the figs
fall into your palm almost
before the pick. The taste
is outside sweet or savory.
It's creamy, calmly robust.
If you must, think of lust.

hans ostrom 2018

Monday, October 8, 2018

Wittgenstein's Progress

After trying to reduce
philosophy to mathematics,
Wittgenstein went on
to explore a forest
of rhetoric and psychology,
of banter and brain.

hans ostrom 2018

Transformation: Chess

The pawn's a piece of candy.
The bishop is a blade.
The knight, a hook, The rook's
as smooth as jade.

Queen's a budding branch.
King is an hour glass.
Foreheads of the players
shine like brass.

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, September 27, 2018


Earth, the biggest mouth,
moistens as water squats above
in heavy clouds. Before
the burst, you stand and smell
the rain to come, your brain
enthralled by a wet-soil freshness,
a perfume. Petrichor, they
call it, that smell. How long

have hominids savored it?
When the rain arrives, slapping
and drenching, it drives away
the ancient earthy fragance,
replaces it with something
which can't hold you outside.

Inside you're not quite wistful
at a window. You wish you could
have put that odor in a vase.

hans ostrom 2018

Can't Help It

The last red rose of the year
from the Mister Lincoln tree 
lives in this here sentences,
kind of. It exists when I sniff
its luxuriant perfume and when
I tell myself the black nick
on one petal is to be preferred. 
and the petals are fluid sculptures.
Yes, I know, poets and roses,
roses and poets. Can't help it.

hans ostrom 2018

Frail Wishes

Everything seems more fragile now:
my hip, democracy, seas, trees, trust,
wisdom, wolves. I wish dictators
and white supremacy were more
fragile, to the point of collapse.
Such wishes seem especially frail.

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Nuts and Washers

I would tell you what
I'm thinking about but I can't.
Except perhaps in pieces--
debris arriving on shore,
nothing about how the flow
brought it. Here's a piece:
"You can use a nut as a
washer but not a washer as a nut."
I thought something similar
to this (the shape of language
is not the exact shape of thought)
while the thought factory roared
in the background.

It seems much easier to invent
what I'm thinking or give
approximations, tailor them
to conventions of discourse,
and keep moving through life,
remaining aloof from quests,
prophecy, and other forms of
certainty. What do you think?

hans ostrom 2018

Tuesday, September 4, 2018

Off Your Coast

It looks like I'm just off your coast,
cold in a boat. A night sea's no fun.
A buoy bobs like a clown's head.
Let me into your harbor, please,

not because I imagine I love you
but because I'm cold and you
are warm. Simple as that.
Your lighthouse seems delighted

to see me. I'm turning my back
on it now and rowing. I don't
know if you'll be on the beach.
I know how I'll fee if you are.

hans ostrom 2018

Remember: It's About Adaptability

A gull with a fish in its mouth
flies low. A steller's jay cackles
maniacally as it dives toward a
task. Comes a couple of woos
like wind through a hole in a wall:
a dove. Crows shift their feet
on a street corner as if considering
a labor strike, a starling
gossips at the top of a pole,
and a hummingbird, tough
as a boot, not cute, pierces
awareness. All of this within
an hour's time. Birds seem
to own this place, mortgage
free, indefinitely. They're better
at Earth-living than we.

hans ostrom 2018

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Train Station, Milano

Because you're exhausted,
not to mention privileged,
you rest in Milano's main station
and let it be a buffering space
between you and America's
grotesqueries. You wonder if
anyone uses the word grotesqueries
anymore. Prob'ly not. You can't deny
the passport in your pocket.

You prefer the station cafe,
which pigeons frequent. They
thrust their monocled eyes
into the mix, use crumbs
as dice, and gamble away
their past with glee. Their
conversations distill many
throated percolations. Same
goes for the people.

Words from many human
languages try the air. Your
wish not to hear American
English is granted. People
in the station are happy
to see each other, their
laughter isn't cruel, and
no one's belligerent. It
seems miraculous.

hans ostrom 2018

Saxophone Sunset

(Ben Webster, "That's All")

Plump notes, tenor sax. Ripe
peaches, warm fuzz exteriorily
wry. Now

things must move uptown.
Phrases must front style.

Though even among neon
and hard traffic & hard lives
they do not lose
their memory of sunset.

Sweet, tart, sad, not bitter,
that's all.

hans ostrom 2018

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Take Him In

Madame, take him in.
He's like an old dog.
Give him some water,
scratch behind his ears
(so to speak), and he'll be
loyally enamored,
or is already. You could
probably use the company.

He doesn't talk much,
and he'll listen all night.
After you fall asleep,
he'll read, or daydream
at the wrong hour.

Later, give him some food
or ask him to bring you some.
Give him something
to bark at on your behalf.
Call him whatever
you like when you
invite him to leave.
Names are as common
as fleas, and he didn't
name himself & so has
no investment in the thing.

You don't have to keep him--
around or otherwise. Merely
take him in, madame.

hans ostrom 2018

Leopard Slug

Why hadn't you seen that kind of slug
before?  Limus Maximus. Irresponsible
of you, really. Nutmeg
speckles on a pond-gray body that looks like
a liquid bean pod. Of course
there were the pale, knobbed antennae
for listening to quick
tunes on a slug radio.

Across an expanse of concrete
moved the mollusk, not a crawl
but patient glide. You didn't have
all day to watch it and anyway
too much slug observation
creates a strange pathetic mood.

hans ostrom 2018

Opera Operative

An operative at an opera
ogles the audience,
lets singing sluice her
professional suspicion.

The operative serves
no cause, only fulfills
assignments, and laughs
at the news.

The opera is a tragedy
apparently--like civilization,
thinks the operative, who
has seen what needed

to be seen, so that the mission
may now blossom like an aria.

hans ostrom 2018

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Jury Duty

We passed through voi dir,
my dear, were made peers
of a rococo realm, with its
perched presider and purchased
persuaders.  We nodded at passing
evidence, became a dozen guilty
buzzards asked to shadow
a creature offered on an altar
called The People. We heard

arguments open and close
like shutters banging in the wind.
In a room, our opinions
accumulated like snow.  In that
drift was buried our decision,
which we seized.  The facts had
whispered to us, “He is guilty.”
We listened to them and repeated
what they said.  The defendant

bowed his head.  Shadows
of our doubt followed us outside,
where, greasy-winged, we joined
The People leading perfectly
legal lives.

hans ostrom 2014/2018

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Eve's Note to Adam

Thank you for the box
of twigs. How did you come to think
to save them? And the pebbles, too.
Pebbles and twigs, apples
and figs, ah what a summer it was
even though we got evicted.

hans ostrom 2018

Monday, August 6, 2018

The Mouse of Contrition

The mouse of contrition
withdraws to its nest.
I am sorry, I am sorry, says
the mouse. For what, I can't
remember, but I do apologize. 

Wise, the mouse enjoys sleep
more than guilt, and so
in the warm embrace of old
newsprint chewed, it dozes
but doesn't stop the quivering
of its nose, which is agnostic.

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Lizard and Person

A lizard springs out of always and scurries
perpendicular to level across a hot face
of tan granite. Stops. Stares at a person
who stares back with perception larded
with knowledge, free association,
and mind's always frenzied business.

The lizard focuses, grins thinly, sprints
into a crack between boulders, and settles
into shadow to digest a fly. The person's
mind is beset by why.

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Swatting the Rumor

A rumor made the rounds,
gliding slowly like a fat skurzing
fly. Before peaking, my attention
got briefly piqued. I lost interest
and swatted down the rumor.
After wiggling its dirty legs,
it died on its back.

hans ostrom 2018

Friday, July 20, 2018

The Thin Thick of It

Well here we are in the moment's
techno-trend, alone in groups with our phones,
semi-ignoring the quasi-friends
sitting next to us. With our thumbs,
we hammer at glass like chickens
trained to play beak-bingo.

We swim in a river of gerunds--
posting, texting, liking, blocking,
attacking, retweeting, de-friending,
muting, sharing . . . We belong

to fractured unaccredited schools of fish,
unspooling into fractal clouds
of selfies. Masses mediated
mediate masses, sniffing fumes
of toxic gasses. It's all very real
and revolutionary, as well as false plus
reactionary. It's headed toward the only
destination left to us on the map: More.

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, July 19, 2018

This Is Not Just to Say

A plum's uninhibited purple
epidermis entertains a faint
silver mist, you noticed.

Even as you chomped
through the fruit
to eat what you expected,

your abstracted mind
nibbled on a
nebula of thought.

hans ostrom 2018

("This Is Just to Say," William Carlos Williams)

Haiku Flu

too sad, haiku, you
have the flu & your
fevered syllables shiver

hans ostrom 2018

Peckish Muse

Should Muse want to munch,
pre-lunch, on a haiku,
fix a syllable-snack

hans ostrom 2018

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

I Thought Broth

I'm trying to understand
why I'm writing about broth.
Was it your idea?

I thought broth, and then--
here I am, wrangling
words about it.

Both is good, right?
It's basic and pays
due respect to water.

The word itself, Broth--
excellent. Could even
represent a Nordic figure--

Broth, son of Erik the
Ambivalent. You know,
I think I'll leave it there,

bring this broth boat
back to port beside a warm
and salty sea.

hans ostrom 2018

Good News: You're Out of Touch

Because now it's all connected,
because now it's all infected
with connectivity, parasiting itself,
surveilling every person, place, and thing, you

don't feel connected, nor do you
especially want to. Your data's connected
very well indeed, not you. There
goes human culture, rocketing

off, and you're staying behind
in your material here, although you fake
living virtually very well. You feel
solitary but not sad. It's a relief

to be not interested in what it's all
coming to, whatever it's coming to,
and who would know, given the fact
and farce that human culture hurtles

with indifference to consequences.
It's virtually like standing in an empty town,
which the residents abandoned. Your
data's off partying with them. Sometimes

it reports back. The town, an existential
cocoon, does this thing that no one and
no thing does anymore. It leaves you
alone. Not heavenly, but nice.

hans ostrom 2018

Betty's Version of Time

Every death shatters time. For instance,
Betty, 92 years old, died, eased (we tell
ourselves) out on a morphine drip. Her
consciousness housed a vast museum

of time with complex installations composed
of fantastic materials perception had gathered
and memory had refined into alloys. There
were fabrics woven of intimacies, light,

fear, houseplants, brooms, secret beliefs,
desires, cooking, laughing, parenting, and
itching. Neuro-video loops played on angled
surfaces. Betty's sense of Betty

powered the place, a generator deep
in the basement. It all collapsed in an instant
just after 3:00 p.m. one day. Betty's magnificent
version of time, gone.

hans ostrom 2018

Sunday, July 1, 2018

What Would Bukowski Write?

I wonder what Bukowski would be writing
now. More Bukowski poems, of course.
Rooted in his life, some stuff made up,
who cares, and then, in a line anywhere
in the poem, a statement strikes like a snake.
You get an insight not offered up as one.
It tears into you. His poems usually ignore

the wider world beyond San Pedro
and other Hank haunts, as if the world,
because it was so stupid and mean,
wasn't worth his time, and it isn't,
and it's getting worse. Maybe he would

have said something about Trump, though--
how low down, dirty, and mean he is.
A pimp. A psychopath--the kind that kicks
a sleeping drunk on The Row to show off
to his friends, other rich boys. Kick and laugh.
The kind that deserves to end up
on the losing side of a brawl one night,
knocked out, beaten, bloody, and down,
nobody gleeful about it but lots of people
feeling like it was an exorcism.

hans ostrom 2018

Recovering Vikings

Me and my friends rowed and sailed
from Scandinavia to Newfoundland
(your names for these places) without
a proper compass, adequate outerwear,
good hygiene, enough jokes, and
sufficient nutrition. We fought off
parasites, boils, and madness. This
happened in the 10th century or so--
your system of time. We're still trying
to recover. At an undisclosed location.

hans ostrom 2018

Of Time and the Chickering

I like to give jazz standards
a good bruising on the old Chickering
parlor grand piano, which long ago
was rescued from the Buckhorn Lodge,
a bar in the High Sierra where whiskey
had been sloshed on some of the hammers.
Good times. I really can count
beats and measures, honest. But

I get distracted. I dawdle or rush,
freeze or trip. My fingers suddenly
turn into bear paws, then shrink
again back to size. Much depends
upon the weather, the atmospheric
pressure, the presence or absence
of crows in the area.  Anything
Ellington can mesmerize me,
and I start thinking about how
in the harlem he ever came up
with that chord or phrase. Sometimes

I just look into the deep brown
varnish of the Chickering, or stare
at the decal, Johnson Piano Company,
Portland, Oregon, and I wonder
what the route was from Boston
to Portland to Sierra City and finally
for a while, Tacoma, where the piano
had earned a restoration, where
it sat beside Cher's white piano,
which had also entered rehab.

I salve the blond
nicks with linseed oil
and always throw away
the rag. A tuner comes in
regularly, praises the tone,
rich and seasoned, whiskey-
tempered, long suffering
with regard to my drifts
into alternate space-time keyboards.

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, June 28, 2018

The Sound of a Person Inferred

The sound of air moving, of moving
air. The sound, moving through air,
of air. The sounds of other things,
other sounds, impromptu syncopation--

a glass against marble; a door,
a bird, silverware and silverware,
a plate against wood, none of these
seen, only heard, a person inferred.

The dopplerized squall of a passing car.
A lid going back on a jar.

hans ostrom 2018

Everything Had Its Say Today

Everything  had its say today.
Behind their branches, fir trees murmured.
Cars, as always, couldn't shut up, their
speeches dull and linear. Beams and joists
and pipes chatted, whined, and groaned
in buildings. Lots of complaining.

I kept waiting for rocks to talk.
They will one day. It takes them eons
to formulate a thought.

The sky speaks sign language,
except when lightning strikes.
Then comes that unmistakable
laughter of delighted air.

Also, sounds of screaming
and crying seemed to spring
from cages America locks children
in on borders, in jails. Yes,
weirdly, even steel and depravity
had their say today.

hans ostrom 2018

Jim Crow Never Left

In America White Supremacy's
the deepest state of all. Jim Crow
never left. He became Chief Justice.
He became President and Senate,
infiltrated police departments
and border patrols. His spores

live in millions, who demand
(and get) a nation in which only
they are people. Jim Crow always
demands and gets. His sulphorous
spirit rides in white sheets through
people's stupidity-soaked rage.

Only people who think they're white
can get rid of White Supremacy,
and they never do. They can't live
without it. It forms the core
of their religions, schools,
and neighborhoods. So

Jim Crow never left,
stays obese by feasting
on America's depraved soul.
He's driving the segregated
train back toward 1920
and off a cliff.

hans ostrom 2018

Pick and Shovel

Dig with a shovel, dig with a pen:
Heaney's formulation. This

morning I dug a shallow trench,
recalled my Old Man, Alec,
who taught me how to use a pick
and shovel right. The crucial
nuances. (I've never seen

a Hollywood movie in which
the digging and digger weren't
unintentionally ludicrous. Usually it
starts with the genre of shovel itself.)

Alec had dug everything from
blasted quartz gold ore to river
gravel mixing concrete, from
sewer-lines to stone-wall footings.
Also graves. Often he used a long steel bar
to make a boulder twice his
weight dance aside. In another

life, without a war, he would have
been a mining engineer or geologist.
He appreciated High Sierra rock
and soil. He never got frustrated
with them. Instead he stayed steady,
befriended leverage, let the tools
work. Piles of rock, piles
of dirt.  Soon the task melted.

Labor isn't poetry, but it has
a rhythm, rides repetition,
requires alert attention. By

the time finished the trench
today, old jeans and a paint-stained
shirt had siphoned pools of sweat,
and I as satisfied again with
the father I had had.

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Kinds of People

There are two kinds
of people in this world:
those who think
there are two kinds
of people in this world
and those who don't.

hans ostrom 2018

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Bell Sound from an Iron Bell

Nostalgia asked,
"Don't you prefer the sound
of a bell to come from a bell?"
I answered, "Yes, but not
because of you." It's true.

hans ostrom 2018

After Frogs Finally

After frogs finally
and all at once
(as if by contract or with
music charts) stop their
maniacal, charming belch-fest,
night air's suddenly
full of unused echoes,

which will stay for next
night's sprung chorus.

At this time, there will be
no statement regarding
hominids listening to frogs
while both have occupied
Time's gorges. Instead

we suggest you wonder
how it feels and sounds
to be a wet frog croaking
among other croaking wet frogs,
goodnight, goodnight, goodnight!
Do sense yourself a part of that fest. 

hans ostrom 2018

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Metro, Milano

Three steps down,
and you inhale a wash
of metro exhale,
a garrulous breeze blending
smells of dirt, steel, people,
and the past. As with all metros,
even the air commutes.

Turnstiles and silly small
gates need to know about your ticket,
which gets eaten then
barfed up by something chrome.
How strange
that all the metro workers have
left these caves.

Because you think in cities
that violence whispers to everyone,
you hang back from the track
at least six strides.

The train bullies a wind
in front of it.  The car doors
hiss like bothered cats. Outflow
of guarded faces comes before
inflow of anxious faces,
and don't dare take your time,
as if it belonged to you.

How quiet the riders are.
The train does all the talking--
a recorded voice from the 1960s,
lilting and aloof. A few furtive
glances disrupt the numbed
glumness. In the caves,

a few beggars and buskers
reshape not at all the flow of torsos
and heads on legs.  Branches
of the River Metro flow against
gravity up to level, where
oceans of noise are ludicrously
loud. Below, above, it's all
a goddamned semi-efficient mess.
Take your allusions

to Plato, Styx, and Persephone
and toss them like a ticket.
Nobody cares.
This is urban business. Surplus
value rides these trains
wherever these trains ride.

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, June 6, 2018


odd word, alps--
awed by these massifs we
use a word that is a gulp

hans ostrom 2018

Museum of Design, Milano

in the cafe of
the Museum of Design
a warped table wobbles

hans ostrom

New Stars, Please

As we know,
the night sky needs updating.
Many stars visually
echo light from dead
sources. It's
astronomical lying.

Has Orion's belt
fallen off completely?

Has Ursa Major suffered
a mortal wound?

Are all the Seven Sisters
still a family?

I recommend looking
through glasses that filter
out light from dead stars.

True, astrologers might
be horrified. A bad
night for their horoscopes--
who could have predicted it?

hans ostrom 2018

So Somewhere Sally

So somewhere Sally
got lost on vacation.

She was working too
hard at relaxing.

She heard a cat

The sound brought
her back to here,

where she were, in
the blur of being somewhere.

hans ostrom 2018

Swallows in Sicily

How long have swallows lived
in Sicily? They don't
ask questions like that.

They seem to live in
every town, just like Sicilians.
Their evening flights weave
patters impossible to extract.

They carve and slice the air,
teasing it into life after
its mid-day coma.

Their cries are tuned
to waver between
shriek and whistle.

At nightfall, in Cefalu,
we miss the swallows more
than the sun, more than
the fun we had, if we had
some fun, today.

hans ostrom 2018

Haiku Shoes

sonnets wear slippers,
ballads like boots
L-A-N-G-U-A-G-E poems,
hip waders, &
haikus, just shoes

hans ostrom 2018

At the Airport

airplanes not flying
sniff gates sadly. they
are too big too enter

hans ostrom 2018

Ducks Are Optimists

Paddle a little,
float a lot. Keep
the upper body
still and sturdy.

Where there's water,
there's food. "A
rounded bill will get
it's way." (Old

duck-saying.) Paddle
and float. Sleep well.
Mutter observations.
Migrate with light.

hans ostrom 2018

Lake Como

The mountains say
What should we do
with all this snow?

The lake says
What should I do with
all these mountains?

Together the mountains
and the lake say Get these
people out of here. We
don't need them. 

hans ostrom 2018

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Bird Reticence

Well, maybe if you
didn't try so hard
to understand birds,
they'd share their
observations with you.

They're very busy, they
know how horrible
humans can be, and
they used to be dinosaurs.
Hence the reticence.

hans ostrom 2018

Young Olive Tree

smooth meandering trunk
young olive tree
soft silver mist, Sicily

hans ostrom 2018

Conditional, Tense

I would introduce you
to my friends, but I
don't have any. Hardly.

I'd give an hour-long
speech (favorable)
about your personality,

but I have nothing
prepared. If you would
give me your consent,

I'd kiss you on the cheek--
face or derriere. (Yes,
I am enamored of you,

an I use the term
"enamored of"). I
would do this, I

could do that. Life
lacks luster, and I am
conditionally tense.

hans ostrom

Inside the Cake

Tonight I feel as if
I'm inside an invisible
cake. Reality cake.

I didn't have anything
to do with baking
a cake. I don't know

who baked it, or if
it just baked itself.
I'm simply inside the

cake. Tonight that's
all right. I don't have
to know why the

cake exists or why
I am inside it or why
reality is this cakiness.

hans ostrom

Friday, May 4, 2018

College Test in May

students look at the test
a contract with memory.
sunlight in windows

hans ostrom 2018

Lichen, Sierra Nevada

pale green lichen
on blue rocks, top of mountain.
a patient form of life.

Hans Ostrom

Consider It Done (Hike Haiku)

as we hiked I said
I like you & promised to write
a haiku for you

hans ostrom 2018

Gangster President

vile gangster president
(cult of hatred) makes war
on law and knowledge

hans ostrom 2018

The Stemware of the Bourgeois Garden

tulips. red yellow white orange
flexible stemware
filled with soft secrets

hans ostrom 2018

Wrong Order

these are not the
seventeen syllables I ordered.
a refund, please

hans ostrom 2018

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Curriculum Vitae

I taught my final class today. I'm retiring after 40 years in the college classroom and 35 at the same college. So I thought I'd report back after all these years--mission completed if not accomplished. My curriculum vitae (and that has to take a special place in the Academic Phrases Hall of Fame.

Curriculum Vitae

HANS OSTROM                                                                            2018                                                                  
Professor of African American Studies and English
University of Puget Sound
Tacoma, WA 98416
TELEPHONE: 253-879-3372 (work)
Ph.D. in English, University of California, Davis,1982
    Dissertation: “British Romantic Verse Satire”
    DAI 44, no. 01A (1982): 0177. Examination-areas:
    18th century British literature; 19th century British
     literature; modern British and American poetry.
M.A.  in English, University of California, Davis,1979
B.A.   in English, University of California, Davis, 1975
Academic Employment
University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, Washington: 1983-present. Current appointment: Professor of African American Studies and English
2008-2011: James Dolliver NEH Distinguished Teaching Professor, English Department
Uppsala University, Sweden: Fulbright Senior Lecturer, 1994.
University of California, Davis: 1977-80; 1981-1983. (Teaching assistant;lecturer; director of the Campus Writing Center.)
Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany, 1980-81: Visiting Lecturer in American Studies.

Subjects Taught

Unless otherwise indicated, the courses have been taught at the University of Puget Sound; courses are listed alphabetically.
African-American Literature (senior-level seminar)
American and Japanese Cultural Identity (emphasis on literature and cinema), core-curriculum, senior-level course
American Literature: 19th century (graduate seminar, Uppsala University)
American Literature and Culture (undergraduate survey course, Gutenberg University)
Asian-American Literature (senior-level seminar)
British Literature: Survey, 1800-1950 (sophomore-level survey-course)
Composition (first-year college writing-and-rhetoric)—U.C. Davis, Johannes
     Gutenberg University
Creative Writing: Introductory and Advanced, Poetry and Short Fiction (sophomore-and senior-level courses)
Critical Reading of Poetry (U.C. Davis) (sophomore-level course for non-majors)
Detective Fiction (junior-level course, primarily for majors)
First Year Seminar in Writing and Rhetoric (core-curriculum)
Genre: Poetry (junior-level course—an overview of Anglo-American lyric poetry and a study of prosody)
Harlem Renaissance, The (core-curriculum, senior-level course)
History of Rhetoric (senior-level seminar)
Introduction to English Studies (sophomore-level course)
Twentieth-Century American Literature (senior-level seminar)
William Wordsworth (junior-level seminar)
Writing and Gender (senior-level seminar blending rhetorical theory,
    feminist theory, and literature)

Awards, Fellowships, Honors

James Dolliver NEH Chair in Distinguished Teaching, English Department University of Puget Sound, 2008-2011.
Dirk Andrew Phibbs Memorial Award, presented by the University Enrichment Committee, University of Puget Sound, 2006.
President’s Award for Outstanding Teaching, University of Puget Sound, 2005.
Distinguished Professor, University of Puget Sound, 2000-present.
Burlington Northern Curriculum-Development Grant, University of Puget Sound, Summer 1999.
John Lantz Fellowship, University of Puget Sound, 1996-97.
J. William Fulbright Fellowship for Senior Lecturers, Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden, 1994.
Burlington Northern Faculty Achievement Award, University of Puget Sound,1986 and 1989.
Alumni Association's Citation for Excellence, University of California, Davis, 1989.
Invited Participant, Matsushita Seminar in Modern American and Japanese Literature and Culture, 1989.
Martin Nelson Sabbatical Fellowship, 1987.
Teaching Award for Outstanding Graduate Students, U.C. Davis, 1982.
Regents Fellowship, University of California, Davis, 1977-78.
Professional Memberships and Listings
--Lifetime Member, Alumni Association, University of California, Davis.
--Listed in the Directory of American Poets and Fiction Writers and Contemporary Authors, volume 43, new series.
--Listed in the Poets & Writers directory (online).
Langston Hughes Society
National Book Critics Circle
PEN/American Center
George Orwell’s “Politics and the English Language” in the Age of Pseudocracy. Written with William Haltom. New York and London: Routledge/Taylor & Francis, 2018. In the Routledge Series on Rhetoric and Composition.
Clear a Place for Good: Poems 2006-2012. Tacoma: Congruent Angle Press, 2012.
Without One: A Novel. Tacoma: Congruent Angle Press and Amazon Digital Services. ASIN: B00771XFF2
Honoring Juanita: A Novel. Tacoma, Congruent Angle Press, 2010.
The Coast Starlight: Collected Poems 1976-2006. Indianapolis: Dog Ear Publishing, 2006.
The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature. 5 volumes, 2,010 pages.  Edited with J. David Macey.  Westport and London: Greenwood Press, 2005. I also contributed 61 entries to the encyclopedia. They are listed below under Articles.
The Subject Is Story: Essays for Writers and Readers. Edited with Wendy Bishop. Portsmouth, N.H.: Boynton Cook/Heinemann, 2003. This anthology for college students and teachers includes essays about narration in nonfiction writing, narrative aspects of rhetoric, and related topics.
A Langston Hughes Encyclopedia. Westport, Connecticut, and London: Greenwood Press, 2002.  495pp.  Sole author, except for 8 entries.
Metro: Journeys in Creative Writing. (Lead Author.) Written with Wendy Bishop and Katharine Haake. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, 2001. This is a textbook for use in college creative-writing and advanced-composition courses.                                                                                                                  
Subjects Apprehended: Poems. Johnstown, Ohio: Pudding House Press, 2000.
Genre and Writing: Issues, Arguments, and Alternatives. Edited with Wendy Bishop.Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann/Boynton Cook, 1997.  The book is composed ofessays on genre-theory and on connections between writing-pedagogy and definitions of genre. I contributed a chapter in addition to co-editing the book.
Colors of a Different Horse. Edited with Wendy Bishop. Urbana, Illinois:National Council of Teachers of English, 1994. The book is composed of essays about the influence of rhetorical and literary theory on the teaching of creative writing, especially in American colleges.
Langston Hughes: A Study of the Short Fiction. New York: Twayne/Macmillan, 1993.
 Water's Night: Poems. With Wendy Bishop. Grass Valley, California: Mariposite Press, 1994.
Lives and Moments: An Introduction to Short Fiction. Ft. Worth: Holt, Rinehart, Winston, 1991. The book includes eighty stories, with critical overviews, writing-assignments, and bibliographies.
Three to Get Ready. Oakland: Cliffhanger Press, 1991.  Novel.
Spectrum: A Reader, co-edited. San Diego: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1987.
Leigh Hunt: A Reference Guide.  Written with Timothy J. Lulofs.  Boston: G. K. Hall, 1985.    The book is an annotated bibliography of secondary sources, including contemporary reviews of Hunt’s work. 264pp.
The Living Language: A Reader. Co-edited with Linda Morris and Linda Young. New York: Harcourt, Brace Jovanovich, 1984.
Articles and Chapters (Selected)
“Hidden Purposes of Creative Writing: Self, Power, and Knowledge,” in Teaching Creative Writing in Higher Education: Anglo-American Perspectives, edited by Heather Beck.  London: Palgrave, 2012.
“The Audiences of Wendy Bishop’s Writing,” in Composing Ourselves As Writer-Teacher-Writers: Starting With Wendy Bishop, edited by Patrick Bizzaro and Alys Culhane. New Jersey: Hampton Press, 2011.
“Rudolph Fisher,” in Scribners’ Contemporary Authors Supplement XIX edited by Jay Parini (Detroit and New York: Gale/Cengage, 2009), 65-80.
“Tutoring Creative Writers: Working One-to-One on Prose and Poetry,” in Creative Approaches to Writing Center Work, edited by Kevin Dvorak and Shanti Bruce. New Jersey: Hampton Press, 2008, 147-158.
 “Teaching The Ways of White Folks,” in Teaching the Harlem Renaissance, ed. Michael Soto. New York: Peter Lang, 2008, Part II, Chapter 13, 137-144.
“Langston Hughes,” in An Encyclopedia of Literature and Politics, edited by M. Keith Booker (Westport: Greenwood Publishers, 2005).
“Masks of Revision,” in Acts of Revision.  Edited by Wendy Bishop. Portsmouth, N.H.: Boynton-Cook/Heinemann, 2004, pp. 28-37.
“Story, Stories, and You,” in The Subject is Story. Edited by Wendy Bishop and Hans Ostrom.  Portsmouth, N.H.: Boynton-Cook/Heinemann, 2003.
"Edward Moxon" and "Frank O’Connor [Michael Francis O’Connor O’Donovan]" in the New Dictionary of National Biography, ed. H.C.G. Matthew. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004. See
"Spiders, Flies, and Other Creatures of Reading’s Brave New World," in The Subject is Reading, ed. Wendy Bishop. Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann/Boynton Cook, 2000, 191-204. Co-written with Sarah Sloane, Wade Williams, and Teresa Giffen.
"Elizabeth Bishop’s ‘The Fish,’" in a Reference Guide to American Literature, ed. Thomas Riggs.  Detroit: St. James Press, 1999.
"Access: Writing in the Midst of Many Cultures," in The Subject Is Writing: Essays By Teachers and Students, 2nd edition, ed. Wendy Bishop. Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann/Boynton-Cook, 1999, 62-72.
"Langston Hughes’s ‘The Blues I’m Playing,’" in a Reference Guide to Short Fiction, ed. Thomas Riggs. Detroit: St. James Press, 1999, 770-771.
"’Carom Shots’: Re-conceptualizing Imitation and Its Uses in Creative Writing Courses," in Teaching Writing Creatively, ed. David Starkey. Portsmouth: Heinemann/Boynton-Cook, 1998, 164-172.
"Countee Cullen: How Teaching Rewrites the Genre of `Writer,'" in Genre and Writing (cited above under Books).
"Grammar ‘J’ as in Jazzing Around: The Role Play Plays in Style," in Elements of Alternate Style, Elements ed. Wendy Bishop. Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann/Boynton Cook, 1997.
"Letting the Boundaries Draw Themselves: What Theory and Practice Have Been Trying to Tell Us," co-written with Wendy Bishop, Cream City Review (volume 19, no. 2), Spring 1996.
"William Everson's `Earth Poetry' and the Progess Toward Feminism," Essays In Honor of William Everson, ed. Bill Hotchkiss. (Corvalis, Oregon: Castle Peak Editions, 1993.)
"Mary Morris: Riding the Iron Rooster" (profile of American travel writer Mary Morris and discussion of her book, Wall to Wall), San Francisco Review of Books 16.3 (Fall 1991), p.3.
"Edward Moxon," Dictionary of Literary Biography: British Publishers I (DLB, volume 106) (Detroit and London: Gale Research Series, 1991).
"Prelude: A Program for College Freshmen In Writing and Thinking," Washington English Journal 8, no. 3 (Spring 1986), 22-27. Co-author.
"The Blue Review," in British Literary Magazines: The Victorian and Edwardian Age, 1837-1913. Ed. Alvin Sullivan. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1984, pp. 41-43. (The Blue Review was edited by John Middleton Murry .)
"Samhain," in British Literary Magazines: The Victorian and Edwardian Age, 1837-1913. Ed. Alvin Sullivan. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1984, pp. 376-379. (Samhain was edited by W.B.Yeats).
"The Mint," in British Literary Magazines: The Modern Age, 1914-1984. Ed. Alvin Sullivan. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1986, pp. 264-267. (Edited by Geoffrey Grigson, The Mint published writing by W.H. Auden, Sean O’Casey, Graham Greene, Peter Taylor, and Simone Weil, among others.)
"New Poetry," in British Literary Magazines: The Modern Age, 1914-1984. Ed. Alvin Sullivan. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1986, pp. 284-286.
"The Disappearance of Tragedy in Meredith's "Modern Love." Victorian Newsletter 63 (Spring 1983): 26-30.
“Blake’s Tiriel and the Dramatization of Collapsed Language.” Papers On Language and Literature  Vol. 19, no. 2 (Spring 1983), 167-182.
"Pope's Epilogue to the Satires, 'Dialogue I'." Explicator, 36:4 (1978), pp. 11-14.
Articles in The Greenwood Encyclopedia of African American Literature (5 volumes), edited by Hans Ostrom and J. David Macey (see under Books above), listed by volume number and page numbers.
“Ralph Abernathy,” I, 1-2; “Lewis Alexander,” I, 20-21; “Jeffrey Richard Allen,” I, 23; “Regina M. Andrews,” I, 34-35; “William Andrews,” I, 35-36; “Allen B. Ballard,” I, 78-79; “Melba Patillo Beals,” I, 100-101;”Barry Beckham,” I, 106-107; “Charlene A. Berry,” I, 116; “Michele Andrea Bowen,” I, 171-172; “Jill Witherspoon Boyer,” I, 174; “Sharon Bridgforth,” I, 178-179; “Theodore Browne,” I, 208-209; “Louré Bussey,” I, 221-222; “Ben Caldwell,” I, 230; “Civil War, The [American] [and African American literature],” I, 235-237; “Frank B. Coffin,” I, 298; “Maud Cuney-Hare,” I, 382; “Julie Dash,” II, 390-391; “Bridgett M. Davis,” II, 396; “David Drake,” II, 448; “Drama” [African American], II, 448-453; “Erotica,” II, 505; “Federal Writers’ Project,” II, 531-532; “Patrice Gaines,” II, 605; “Hattie Gossett,” II, 646-647; “Bill Gunn,” II, 683; “Abram Hill,” II, 767-768; “Laurence Holder,” II, 783; “Elaine Jackson,” III, 829; “Mat Johnson,” III, 885; “Edward P. Jones,” III, 890-891; “Alain Locke,” III, 988-989; “Monifa Love,” III, “Memphis, Tennessee [and African American Literature],” III, 1077-1078; “Gertrude Bustill Mossell,” III, 1130-1131; “Heather Neff,” III, 1190-1191; “Rob[ert] Lee Penny,” IV, 1272-1273; “Charles Perry,” IV, 1279-1280; “Willis Richardson,” IV, 1399-1400; “Kimberla Lawson Roby,” IV, 1409; “Signifying,” IV, 1477-1479; “John Steptoe,” IV, 1540-1541; “Natasha Tarpley,” IV, 1563-1564; “Eisa Nefertari Ulen,” V, 1635-1636; “Olympia Vernon,” V, 1659-1660; “Persia Walker,” V, 1682; “Michele Faith Wallace,” V, 1683-1684; “Afaa Michael Weaver,” V, 1703-1704; “Cheryl I. West,” V, 1714; “Edgar Nkosi White,” V, 1726-1727; “Roy Wilkins,” V, 1737-1738; “John A. Williams,” V, 1746-1747; “World War I [and African American literature],” V, 1775-1778; “World War II [and African American literature],” V, 1778-1781; “Charles H. Wright,” V, 1782; “Charles S. Wright,” V, 1782-1783; “Andrew Young,” V, 1801-1802; “Shay Youngblood,” V, 1803-1804.
Poetry (Selected)
(Listed alphabetically by title of magazine, journal, or book.)
Abbey, no. 99, “Stephen Spender,” “Story Problems”; no. 100, “Grief for the Number 10,” p. 80.
Acorn, The #41 [El Dorado Writers’ Guild], 2004, “One Feather Shy,” “A Hod Carrier Reflects,” “Wren,” “Bears Waking,” and “Squirrels,” pp. 8-12.
Arches (Alumni Magazine, University of Puget Sound; Summer 2003), "Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven" (invited reprint of the poem).
Art of Music: A Collection of Writings, Volume II, The, ed. Liz Axford (Del Mar: Piano Press, 2004), “Bobby’s Crop,” “The Lesson,” and “Interior Departments.”
Art Times (forthcoming 2005-2006), “Tour of a Painting.”
Aurorean, The (Winter 2003-2004), “Request” and “Can’t Complain,” p. 20.
Barbaric Yawp Volume 7, no. 3 (September 2003), “Story Problems,” p. 29.
Blind Man’s Rainbow (Spring 2004), “Fingernails.”
Blue Collar Review (Winter 2003-2004), “Hands of the Wind,” and “Cheap Labor.”
Blueline Volume XXV (2004), “Heat Stroke” and “The Son She Never Had,” pp. 148-149.
Bogg #74 (2004), “Weaponry Quatrain.”
Borderlines 34 (Anglo Welsh Poetry Society, Powys, Wales), Summer 2004, “Of the Valleys,” p. 39.
California Quarterly (Summer 1980), "Sierra City, September."
Cape Rock, The (October 2004), “Trees on a College Campus” and “The Leopard and the City.”
Christianity and Literature Vol. 53, no. 1 (Fall 2003), “Instrument of Good Works #59” and “First Scrutiny.”
Cider Press Review Volume 4/5 (2004), “Jack Benny and T.S. Eliot In Heaven,” p. 38.
Coal City Review (2004), “Christ and Camus In Heaven.”
Commonweal (October 10, 2003), “Orientation Meeting In the Afterlife,” p. 10.
Connecticut River Review (Fall 1985), "Of A Beaver's Other Dam."
Crazyquilt (Vol. 3, no. 3), September 1988, “Reconnaissance Pilot.”
Cream City Review (Spring 1988), "Paid Mourner" and  "Sierra Nevada in March."
Creosote (2005?), “Statement of Policies and Procedures.”
Cumberland Poetry Review (Spring 1983, Spring 1986, Fall 1990, Spring 2004),"Young Woman on Old Skates," "The Coast Starlight," "In Pompeii," "Migratory Executives,” “The Reinvention of Light in Sweden.”
Cutbank (Fall 1985), "Tornado in the Pennsylvania Hills."
Dominion Review (Spring 1989, No. 7), "Freudian Cowboys of the Purple Sage," "Once I Saw A Sad Old God," and "Harmonica River,” 1-3.
Edge City Review, The, #19 (Spring 2004), “Listless,” p. 43.
From These Hills: An Anthology of California Writers, ed. Judith Shears. Corvalis: Castle Peak Editions, 1991. "Six poems."
The Galley Sail Review, Series 2, #39 (Vol. XII, No. 1), Spring-Summer 1991, “Victory.”
Hadrosaur Tales (#19, 2004), “Suburban Xanadu.”
Harvest (Spring 1978), "Spider Killing" and "The Exiled Dead."
Hazmat Review (2005), “Back Lot, Paramount Studios,” “Düsseldorf and So Forth.”
Hidden Oak (Summer/Fall 2003), “Little Lyric” and “Listless.”
In Tahoma’s Shadow: Poems From the City of Destiny, ed. William Kupinse and Tammy Robacker (Tacoma: Exquisite Disarray, 2009), “A Tacoma Sonnet,” p.93.
Inside Poetry Out: An Introduction to Poetry, by John Hayden (Chicago: Nelson/Hall, 1983), "Calm and Fear" and "Spider Killing."
Intro 10 (1979), "Sestina: Ellis Island/Amelia Earhart."
Iris (Fall 1987), "Alicia's Affidavit" and "Funeral in Los Angeles."
Journal of the American Medical Association [JAMA], January 2004, “Morphine.”
Kersh (College of the Redwoods, Crescent City, California), June 2004, “Moth Anxiety.”
Kiss Off: Poems to Set You Free, ed. Mary D. Esselman and Elizabeth Ash Velez (New York: Warner Books, 2003), “Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven” (invited reprint of the poem).
Krax (England), forthcoming 2007, “Mum Is the Word” and “Memo to Citizens.”
Lantern Review (Ireland), 2004, and “Boden: The Rudiments.”
Laurel Review (Summer 1985), "In The Sierra."
Leading Edge: A Magazine of Science Fiction and Fantasy # 47 (April 2004), “The Trafficiad,” p. 69.
Love's Chance Magazine (Summer 2004), "Just Between You and Me."
Lullwater Review: A Journal for the Literary Arts Volume XIV, no. 1 (Winter 2003-2004), “Mum Is The Word,” p.13.
Medicinal Purposes Vol. II, no. X (Midyear 2004), “St. Petersburg, Russia,” p. 3.
Metro: Journeys in Writing Creatively (see under Books above), “Of Reading.”
Möbius (forthcoming November 2003), "Interim Report" and "The Last Place."
Nexus Volume 39, Issue 1 (Fall/Winter 2004), “Environmental Policy,” p. 53.
New Delta Review (Spring 1985), "The Collector."
Northern Review (Vol. 1, no. 2, Fall 1987), "Kiruna: New Year's Day."
Offerings (fourth quarter, 2003), “Cup,” p. 25.
Old Red Kimono, The, Volume XXIII, (Spring 2004), “Her Confession,” p. 47.
Opossum Holler Tarot #672 [Spring 2003] (New Orleans, Louisiana), “The Subject Is The Bicycle,”
Pablo Lennis (Spring 2000), "Whether Report."
The Panhandler (Fall 1986), “Night Bus In Frankfurt.”
Pennine Platform [England] # 55 (May 2004), “God’s Predicament,” “Interior Design,” “Monastery, Monserratt,” pp. 6-7; 13.
Perspectives: A Journal of Reformed Thought [published at Hope College, Michigan] (January 2004), “To War Again,” “Eligible,” p. 20; (February 2004), “Skylights,” p. 18.
Plains Poetry Journal (July 1986), "Sierra City: April," "By Water," and "Alicia's Ceremonies."
Ploughshares (Spring 1992), "Sierra Nevada: Cold Work Moment."
Poetalk (Summer 2003) [Bay Area Poets’s Coalition], “Childhood: Sierra Nevada,” (Autumn 2003), “Aftermath,” p. 11.
Poetry Motel (2005), “Earth™.”
Poetry Northwest (Spring 1987), "From Another Part of the Forest."
Poetry Nottingham [England] 58, no. 1(March/April 2004), “Söderfors, Sweden” and “Not Walt Whitman,” pp. 22-23.
Pulsar (Ligden Poetry Society, Swindon, Wiltshire, England), “Self-Interview on the Subject of God,” p. 23.
Rearview Quarterly, Volume 2, issue 4 (Winter 2003-2004), “Fable: Noah and Raven,” p. 17.
Red Owl (Spring 2004--#18), “Zen Ambulance”
Red Rock Review (Spring 2001), "On Finally Understanding the Notion of a Happy Hunting Ground" and "Panic Attack."
Samsara, no. 11 (2004), “The Tasks of Grief” and “Grief and Kindness.”
Sierra Journal (Spring 1978), "Climbing" (Spring 1990), "Three Poems," (Spring 1996), "Child of the North Yuba River,” (Spring 2003), “The Acquittal of Socrates” and “Deer in the Headlights.”
Sierra Nevada College Review Volume 15 (Spring 2004), “Friendco,” p. 44.
Smiths Knoll [England] #32 (Fall/Winter 2003-2004), “The Son She Never Had.”
Something Understood (BBC 4 radio program), August 17, 2008, “For Librarians,” read by an actor.
South Carolina Review (Fall 1985), "High School Football."
South Dakota Review (Fall 1984), "Winter Nocturne."
Sow’s Ear Poetry Journal Volume XII, no. 4(Winter 2004), “Nose,” p. 22.
Spoon River Quarterly, Vol. XVI, no. 1-2 [single issue], “Balloonist’s Log, Final Entry” and “She’ll Be Driving Six White Horses.”
Sucarnochee Review (Fall 1989), "Elvis Presley and Emily Dickinson in Heaven."
Tacenda (Fall/Winter 2003/2004), “Environmental Policy” and “Annual Report.”
13 Ways of Looking at a Poem, ed. Wendy Bishop (New York: Longman Publishers, 2000). "Elvis Presley and Emily Dickinson in Heaven" (invited reprint of the poem), "13 Ways of Looking at Wallace Stevens," "Prepositions for the Waitress, "This Is The Gazelle Gazalle," "Fortuitous Twos."
Thorny Locust 10, #4 (2002), “Morphine.”
Timber Creek Review (Winter/Spring 2003), “Fox and You.”
Transcendent Visions (Fall 2003), 'The Quiet Child."
Tulane Review (Spring 2004), “Bobby’s Crop,” p. 71.
Washington Post (“Poet’s Choice” Column by Rita Dove), May 20, 2001, “Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven” (invited reprint of the poem).
Wavelength #9 (Spring 2004), “Ludwig’s Dinosaur” and “The Cherubs, The Harbors,” pp. 19-20.
Willow Springs # 53 (Winter 2004), “Bread and Bus: An Essay” [poem], p. 57.
Wisconsin Review (Fall 1987), "The Day of Small Things," "Electrician," and "Composer in Exile."
Vortex of the Macabre (Fall 2004), “Wickedness Tours,” and “Official Correspondence.”
Xavier Review 23, no. 2 (Fall 2003), “Jean Toomer,” p. 46.
Zillah (Volume 3, Issue 2), Summer 2003, “Career.”
Short Fiction
Red: A Book: open-ended online collection of short nonfiction, flash fiction, prose poems:
"Seven Fables For Teaching and Learning," in In Praise of Pedagogy: Poems and Stories, ed. Wendy Bishop and David Starkey, with an introduction by Ken Autrey Portsmouth, Maine: Calendar Island Books,  2000, 134-137.
"I Guard The White Rhino," Webster Review (Fall 1987).
"The Green Bird," Ploughshares (Fall 1986). Special issue edited by Madeline DeFrees and Tess Gallagher.
"Trouble Reports," South Carolina Review (1990).
"Bluestone," Willow Springs 24 (Spring 1989).
"The Wife of the Ambassador," Whetstone 6 (1989). Reprinted in WIND/Literary Journal, 1991.
Prizes for Poetry and Short Fiction
First prize, Warren Eyster Competition, New Delta Review, 1985. "The Collector." (Poem).
Second Prize, Redbook magazine's annual fiction contest, 1985 (announced in March 1986 issue). "Hostage in Residence" (Short story).
Grand prize, Ina Coolbrith Memorial Awards (California), 1979. Judged by William Dickey. "Elegy for a Distant Relative." (Poem).
First prize, Harvest Awards (University of Houston), 1978. Judged by Stephen Spender. "Spider Killing." (Poem).
Third Prize, Third Annual Art of Music Writing-Contest, Sponsored by Piano Press (Del Mar, California), “Bobby’s Crop” (poem), 2003-2004.

Reviews (Selected)
Susan Koppelman, ed. Women's Friendships: A Collection of Short Stories. Studies in Short Fiction 28, no. 2 (Spring 1991), 231-233.
Carol Bly, The Passionate, Accurate Story. Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries, March 1991.
William Pritchard, Randall Jarrell: A Literary Life, Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries, January 1991.
Susan Lohafer and Jo Ellyn Clarey, eds., Short Story Theory At A Crossroads. Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries, June 1990.
"Gluck's Vision of Text and Textuality" (review of Reader by Robert Gluck), San Francisco Chronicle Review, March 4, 1990, p. 5.
"Bones, Triggers, Continuous Dreams: Books on Creative Writing" (review-article on 12 books), Associated Writing Programs Chronicle, 22, no. 6 (May 1990), p. 1 and ff.
George Lakoff and Mark Turner. More Than Cool Reason: A Field Guide to Poetic Metaphor. Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries, February 1990.
R.S. Hughes, John Steinbeck: A Study of the Short Fiction, Studies in Short Fiction, Volume 26, no. 1 (Winter 1989).
"Small-Town Doubts in the Vietnam Era," review of Monoosook Valley by Elisabeth Hyde. San Francisco Chronicle Review, June 4, 1989, p. 8.
John O. Hayden, ed. William Wordsworth: Selected Prose. New York: Penguin, 1988. Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries (January 1989).
Philip F. Deaver, Silent Retreats. Winner of the 1987 Flannery O'Connor Award for Short Fiction. Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries (November 1988).
"The Price of Sibling Rivalry," review of Born Brothers by Larry Woiwode, San Francisco Chronicle Review, September 18, 1988, p. 7.
"Understated But Powerful Stories," review of Indecent Dreams, by Arnost Lustig, "Books," San Francisco Chronicle, June 1, 1988, p. E4.

"Families Fraying at the Core," review of Valentino and Sagittarius, by Natalia Ginzburg, San Francisco Chronicle Review, May 8, 1988, p. 6.
"A Mad Poet Who’s Not Going To Take It Anymore," review of Easter Sunday, by Tom Clark, San Francisco Chronicle Review, February 7, 1988, p. 3.
Francis Blessington, Lantskip: Poems, Choice: Current Reviews for College Libraries (January 1988).
Harold Orel, Victorian Short Fiction, Newsletter of the Victorian Studies Association of Western Canada (Volume 13, no. 2, Fall 1987).
George Hillocks, Jr., Research on Written Composition: New Directions for Teaching, Washington English Journal (Spring 1987).
Anne Blainey, Immortal Boy: A Portrait of Leigh Hunt, Victorian Studies Association Newsletter 37 (Ontario) (Spring 1986), 31-32.
Richard Beach and Lillian Bridwell, New Directions in Composition Research, Washington English Journal 7, no. 3 (Spring 1985), 26.
Suzanne Ferguson, Critical Essays on Randall Jarrell, American Poetry 2, no. 1 (Fall 1985), pp. 90-92.
Lehman and Berger, eds. James Merrill: Essays in Criticism, American Poetry 1, no. 3 (Spring 1984), pp. 92-93.
Michael Allen, We Are Called Human: The Poetry of Richard Hugo, American Poetry 1, no. 1 (Fall 1983), pp. 91-93.
William Everson, Earth Poetry: Selected Essays and Interviews, Small Press Review (September 1980), p. 11.
Newspaper Column
Twice-monthly column on the literary arts, Tacoma News Tribune, Tacoma, Washington. Sunday readership: 300,000. August 1990-November 1993. The column included pieces on Antonia Fraser, P.D. James, Aristeo Brito, Robert Bly, Rita Dove, John Haines, Gary Snyder, Charles Johnson, Itabari Njeri, Helen Washington, Stuart Dybek, Sue Grafton, Philip Appleman, Yevgeny Yevtushenko, Cristina Garcia, Coleen McCullough, Terry Tempest Williams, and others. The column combined author-profiles (based on interviews) with book reviews.

Conference-Presentations and Invited Lectures, Etc. (Selected)
“Revisiting Orwell’s ‘Politics and the English Language.’”  With Professor William Haltom. Pacific Northwest Political Science Association Conference, Spokane, Washington, Fall 2010.
“Teaching George Orwell in Karl Rove’s World: ‘Politics and the English Language’ in the 21st Century Classroom,” written and presented with Professor William Haltom, Western Political Science Association Conference, Vancouver B.C., March 21, 2008.
“Langston Hughes and the Poetry of a Dream Legally Deferred,” Law and Society Association Annual Conference, Humboldt University, Berlin, July 2007.
“Teaching Langston Hughes’s The Ways of White Folks,” brief presentation for a Roundtable Discussion on “White Scholars, Black Texts,” National Conference on Race and Pedagogy, University of Puget Sound, September 15-16, 2006.
“Langston Hughes and the Politics of Rhetorical Accessibility,” Conference on College Composition and Communication, San Francisco, 2004.
Moderator, panel on “Langston Hughes and the Critics,” Let America Be America Again: An International Symposium on the Art, Life, & Legacy of Langston Hughes, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, February 2002.
"`Imagination’ and Writing in the Disciplines," paper given at Conference on College Composition and Communication, Minneapolis, March 2000.
"Keeping the Personal Ghost in the Machine of Academic Writing," paper for panel on "Voices in Scholarly Writing: Reflections and Complications," Conference on College Composition and Communication, Phoenix, March 1997.
"American Literature Of  The Region, For The Region, and By The Region," lecture for seminar in American Studies, United States Embassy, Stockholm, Sweden, April 1994.
"African-American Literature from Douglass to Morrison: Some Key Challenges and Achievements," lecture at University of Umeå, Sweden, sponsored by the Swedish Fulbright Commission, Spring 1994.
"Round Up The Usual Suspects: American Crime Fiction," presentation to the English Society, Uppsala University, Sweden, Spring 1994.
"Langston Hughes's Short Fiction: Against the Modernist Grain," guest lecture in Professor Rolf Lundén's graduate seminar in American literature, Uppsala University, Sweden, Spring 1994. A revised version was presented at the 1995 MLA conference, Chicago.
"Reconsidering Genre-Boundaries," paper given Modern Language Association Convention, Toronto, 1993.
Co-designer and co-presenter, post-convention workshop on the teaching of creative writing theory and practice, Conference on College Composition and Communication, Cincinnati (March 1992) and San Diego (March 1993).
"Surviving to Write and Writing to Survive: The Complex Case of Langston Hughes," paper given at Conference on College Composition and Communication, Cincinnati, March 1992.
"Designing a Writing Course,” paper for panel on "A Case Study of a Successful Student Writer," National Council of Teachers of English 81st annual convention, Seattle, November 1991.
"Film Criticism as Autobiography: James Baldwin's The Devil Finds Work," paper given at Conference on College Composition and Communication, Boston, March 1991.
Chair, panel on "American Literary Journalism," Conference on College Composition and Communication, Seattle, March 1989.
"Writing in the Pacific Northwest," colloquium and reading (with Madeline De Frees and Joan Swift), St. Martin's College, Lacey, Washington, Spring 1987.
Poetry Readings (Selected)
Berkeley, California (KPFA Radio); Davis, California (KDVS); Ragdale Artists Colony (Lake Forest, Illinois); "Across the River" Reading Program (Oregon and Washington State Arts Commissions); Tacoma Art Museum; "Distinguished Poets Series," directed by Laura Jensen, funded by a Lila Wallace Foundation/Reader’s Digest grant, Tacoma, 1997; University of Puget Sound Faculty Club, 1998; Art Gallery, Pacific Lutheran University, at the opening of “Apertures,” an exhibit featuring the photo-collages of Betty Ragan and poems by Hans Ostrom, April 3, 2001; Lawrence High School and Centennial Elementary School, Lawrence, Kansas (February 2002), as part of an outreach program connected to “Let America Be America Again: An International Symposium on the Art, Life, & Legacy of Langston Hughes,” hosted by the University of Kansas; Center for Contemporary Art, Seattle (with Bill Kupinse), Spring 2006; Peninsula Book Group, Gig Harbor, Washington, 2006; Western Literature Association Conference, Tacoma, Washington, Fall 2007; Daedalus Society, University of Puget Sound, April 2008; Tacoma Public Library, reading in connection with the publication of In Tahoma’s Shadow: Poems From the City of Destiny, ed. William Kupinse and Tammy Robacker (Tacoma: Exquisite Disarray, 2009); Poetry in Hard Times, poetry reading at the Washington History Museum.

Miscellaneous Publications and Small Press Community
Web Log: . This features posts on poetry and on topics of general interest. I also post drafts of poems, and I post poems by others (public domain) and comment on them. @ 900 posts as of October 2009.
“Diversity and the University of Puget Sound,” Advice to New Students: 2008 Orientation, edited by the Prelude Committee, University of Puget Sound, pp. 8-16. Subsequently printed online.
“Hans Ostrom Papers 1978-1992 [and ff.],” Department of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, CA 94305 SPEC-COLL CALL NUMBER  1) M1713. Includes incoming correspondence from  Associated Writing Programs/David Fenza; Bishop, Wendy; Bly, Robert; Bryan, Sharon; Conoley, Gillian; Conroy, John; Davies, John; DeFrees, Madeline; Dove, Rita; Gallagher, Tess; Hammer, Andrea; Hayden, John; Hotchkiss, Bill; Hyde, Elisabeth; Mailer, Norman (to Lloyd Van Brunt); Redbook Short Story Prize; Runciman, Lex; Shapiro, Karl; Spender, Stephen; Thornberg, Newton; Van Arsdel, Rosemary; Wagner, Esther; Wiley, Richard.
Administrative Experience and Contributions to University Governance (Selected)
Faculty Member, ASUPS Media Board, 2012-present
Advisor, Writers’ Guild (student-run organization), circa 2005-2009
Catholic Campus Fellowship (student-run organization); and Blues/Swing Dance Club (student-run), current.
Member, University’s Budget Task Force, 2008-2010. Appointed by the President.
Member, Diversity Advisory Council and the Council’s Committee on Curriculum andAdvising, 2008-2010
Chair, Department of English, 2004-2007.
Member, Faculty Senate, University of Puget Sound, 2006-2009 (elected position).
Chair, Faculty Senate, University of Puget Sound, 2001-2003 (elected position).
Co-Founder and Co-Director, African American Studies Program, University of Puget Sound, 1995-2003.
Chair, Board of Trustees, Seabury School, Brown’s Point, Tacoma, Washington, 1999-2000.
Member, President’s Committee on Diversity, 1990-91.  The Committee was responsible for producing a comprehensive strategic plan for diversity at the University of Puget Sound.  The report was presented to the Board of Trustees in Spring 1991.
Co-designer and co-director of Prelude, a first-year orientation program involving critical thinking (1985; 1986).
Founding Director of the Writing Center, University of Puget Sound, Tacoma, Washington, 1984-86.
Assistant Director of Composition and Director of the Campus Writing Center, U.C. Davis, Davis, California, 1982-83.
Member, Academic Standards Committee; Diversity Committee; Library and Media (academic technology) Committee (various times), University of Puget Sound.
Miscellaneous Professional Activities
Member (1990-present), Editorial Board (involves reading of manuscripts), Writing on the Edge (academic journal), published at the University of California, Davis; manuscript reviewer for Journal of Advanced Composition and College English (intermittent); proposal-reviewer, stages I and II, for the national Conference on College Composition and Communication (Minneapolis, 2000; San Antonio, 2004); invited outside-reviewer in tenure-evaluations, Boise State University, Florida State University, Indiana University/Purdue University at Fort Wayne, Loyola University, Miami University (Florida), and others; manuscript reviewer for Boynton-Cook/Heinemann, an academic publisher specializing in books about composition, rhetoric, and pedagogy (Summer 1999); manuscript reviewer for a composition/rhetoric book submitted to Utah State University Press (Spring 2003); proposal-reviewer for an anthology of detective fiction, Oxford University Press; manuscript reviewer for the Publications of the Modern Language Association (PMLA), twice; book-prospectus reviewer (composition text) for Cengage Learning/Wadsworth Publishers.
Non-Academic Employment (Alphabetically Listed)
Cafeteria Server and Dishwasher (U.C. Davis, 1973-75); Carpenter’s Assistant, Summers, 1973-80; Editor (Office of the Auditor General, California State Legislature, 1981-82); Grocery-Store Worker, Summer 1971; Hod-Carrier and Mason’s Assistant, Summers (1973-80); Laborer, Gravel Pit (Summers, 1971 & 1972); Resident Assistant, Dormitory, Sierra College (1972); Sports Stringer/Freelancer (1971-73), weekly and daily newspapers (reported scores, wrote news articles).