#BlaPoWriMo – Sonnet


Some days I think my poetry making
is done. I try to turn a verse or two
and it all falls flat – no rhythm, no rhymes,
no magic, just words and punctuation.
I need some time at sea to stir things up
a bit. A trans-Atlantic crossing would
be optimum – a paddleboat up the river
will suffice. I’ll always and forever
be a man of simple pleasure. But the air
we breathe is complicated, full of lies.
All the canaries are dead, heaven-bound
in this brave new world where skepticism
is not allowed. A heavy fog surrounds us.
Which sentinel species is next in line?


BlaPoWriMo – from the archives

Some Errant Wednesday Thoughts

It’s Wednesday, which means I’ll spend
the afternoon at work at the reference desk.
But I’d much rather stay comfortably at home,
sip French-pressed coffee in my trendy sweats,
and read poems my friends post on Facebook.

And what will they say of my verses when
I am gone? It’s fair to be circumspect
about the other side, the end of now.

Do you think they’ll call my verses amateur
(that’s what I call myself, I’ll never make
any money off non-rhyming poetry!)?
Will they criticize my work as shallow,
superficial, a bit naive? Or maybe dark,
troubled, complex (only out of a sense
of charity, of course). It won’t matter
that much to me – I’ll be resting peacefully,
with the poets, down by the river.

#BlaPoWriMo – from the archives

Life is so much more like

Parks and Recreation than

Madame Secretary.

So don’t get it twisted

when you pull the curtain back.

Poetry is just streaming words –

nothing high brow about it –

painting is lines and shapes

splashed on canvas with a brush –

and dancing is shifting weight

from one foot to the other

in motion across a wooden floor.

If I were a strong wind I’d wrap

all around you – if a river,

I’d rise up to your knees –

if a song, I’d bounce tenderly

against your eardrums, until I

found my way into your inner heart.

Life. More like Parks and Recreation,

less like Madame Secretary,

nothing like The Good Wife.

Life. Don’t get it twisted.

#BlaPoWriMo – Haircut sonnet

“I think of poetry as being more a transformation of experience
rather than a transcription of it.”  -Carl Phillips

Finally after two months of growing
my Afro out, I went for a haircut.
“Neither I nor the world appreciates
your baby Afro,” my loving wife inveighed,
she, the African woman in my life.
“It’s retro, and passe, and bushy,”
she continued in a rhythmical riff,
“all fuzzy and uneven and unkept.”
“But don’t I need to grow it while I can?”
I vainly offered. It was futile. I gave in
and got it cut real close. Now I’m claiming
my haircut is the reason why Spring is
coming early; I don’t care what shadow
the groundhog may or may not have seen.

#BlaPoWriMo – Saturday night special sonnet

Each universe with which we interact
demands of us a level of respect
and complicity, yes, complicity,
while we wonder if we are hypocrites,
or merely disbelievers. As if it
even matters. And what doesn’t kill us
endows us, becomes our strength and power,
our shelter in a storm. The paths we trod
we tread, the record of our deeds becomes
our judgment day, our immortality.
Be patient with me – I’m not finished yet.
Pay no attention to my southern charm,
that folksiness you underestimate
is just a steady cadence for my march.

random thoughts

This morning I noticed
both the hair cream
and the shaving cream
come in long black tubes.

OMG! Have I been putting
shaving cream in my hair
when I’m up before dawn
and not yet lucid?

Beam me up, Scotty.
My work here is done.

a repetition of the infamous 2013 quartet – from the archives

#1. Invitation

“Many others did go and there was a sacrifice, of what shall we, a sheep, a hen, a cock, a village, a ruin, and all that and then that having been blessed let us bless it.” – Gertrude Stein, Idem the Same – Let Us Describe

The Queen’s Henchmen
request the pleasure of your company
at a Lynching – to be held
at 23rd and C Streets NW
on Tuesday, December 18, 2012 –
just past sunset.

Dress: Formal, Masks and Hoods –
the four being lynched
must never know the identities
of their executioners, or what/
whose sin required their sacrifice.

A blood sacrifice –
to divert the hounds,
to appease the gods,
to cleanse our filth and
satisfy our guilty consciences.

Arrive promptly at sunset –
injustice will be swift.
There will be no trial,
no review of evidence,
no due process, and
no accountability.

Dress warmly –
a chilling effect will instantly
envelop Foggy Bottom.

Total impunity at the top.
A kangaroo court
in a banana republic.

Refreshments will not be served
because of the continuing resolution.

And the ones being lynched?
Who cares? They are pawns in a game.
Our game. All suckers, all fools,
all knaves who volunteered to serve – us.
And the truth? The truth?
What difference at this point does it make?

In case of inclement weather,
or the Queen’s incapacitation,
the Queen’s Henchmen will carry out
this lynching – as ordered, as planned.


#2. The Wizard of Oz

The wicked witch of the East?
The old, decrepit, ancient East?
She dead.
House fell on her ass during the storm.
Feet all shriveled up.
That witch ain’t going nowhere!
Ain’t gon bother nobody!

But the wicked witch of the West?
The new, modern, amoral West?
She’s alive and kicking.
Causing all kinds of trouble.
Done signed a deal with the Wizard –
the lying Wizard.
Dorothy has her hands full with those two.
And the lion ain’t got no courage.


#3. Trapped in a purgatory…

“The top of the pyramid – the organization is composed of Technologists who only pretend to have power, although they are only actors in the theater of mirrors. When the mirror is broken they die, because the internal drive of their actions vanishes.” – Svetislav Basara, The Cyclist Conspiracy

Trapped in a purgatory
of their own conceit…

The web of lies they weave
gets tighter and tighter
in its deceit
until it bottoms out –
at a very low frequency –
and implodes.

It may be just
a matter of perception –
they can’t undo their wrongs
for fear it’d undermine their
perceived authority –
an authority they think
they require to stay in charge.

Yet all the while,
the more they talk,
the more they lie,
and the deeper down
the hole they go.

There’s nothing I need
to go back to –
nothing to re-litigate –
nothing to defend –
and certainly nothing to prove
to the unworthy.

Just wait….just wait
and feed them rope.


#4. Man and the expanding universe: art

moral courage dies
and corruption’s stench prevails –
lies erase the truth –

my LinkedIn friends keep endorsing me
for Government. But me and Uncle Sam

are a shrinking universe. I’m leaving
the troop that errs, the team that lies,

leaders who destroy lives for sport, as art –
themselves a crime, a sin, a plague. Farewell.