Truth or Consequences

I’m in T or C, one of my favorite places, particularly in the winter. This piece below was written a few years ago, but feels like the present. After all, T or C doesn’t change that quickly.


Truth or Consequences Haibun

At the Pelican Spa Motel, a lime green wall, a purple curtain, a turquoise bench. A brick red roof. A turquoise sky. I describe the colors over and over in this notebook as if I were painting.
I’ve noticed that in the Chihuahuan desert Christmas trees always seem to be white or silver. Great clumps of cactus. In the cafe, strings of very beautiful neon colored lights: purple, deep blue, yellow, cherry candy red, kelly green.

this town
is all about color
(and loss)

Trailer parks, funky apartments, half deserted Main Street. An odd courtyard, maybe once a motel, doors guarded by jeweled Buddhas.
They’re building a spaceport here, in Truth or Consequences, New Mexico.
When I peeked inside the windows off the courtyard I saw lavishly aportioned apartments in an Asian style–like something out of the Arabian Nights.
We soak in the deep baths. Nat sits in the sun and writes a haiku about how after twenty years I’m still a poet and she writes prose. She laughs out loud.

The OPEN sign
is all I want to see
on the cafe

at the Sunset Grill
with the old-timers

So many years–at least forty–writing in some notebook, drinking ordinary coffee, in some out of the way corner of the world.

I was young
once too
you know

I write, as if to remind myself. And settle in.

Call for Submissions: Small Canyons


Send in 10 to 20 haiku or haikuesk poems (senryuu, tanka, cinquain, haibun, SciFaiku, rengay or sequence) to me by email if possible and a 3 to 4 line bio. Send to asap, deadline Oct. 15 Write ‘small canyons’ in the subject area, place the haiku and bio in the body of the email, it comes through better that way. The haiku will be published in a chapbook with a folded color cardstock cover with (I hope) 50 to 60 pages

If you want a copy of the book it will cost $10 which includes postage which you can order from me at.

Jim Applegate

601 Fulkerson Drive

Roswell, NM 88203-4127