Friday, October 28, 2016

waiting in rome

the function of bureaucracy
is to make you wait
to show who is boss
to keep you little people down,
in place, engaged

there is a seat, take it
it will be a while
take a number
grasp the ticket
no one will look at it
but it gives you
something to hold on to


Sunday, October 23, 2016

nothing doing

from fifty yards away, black and white,
serene on the banks of a placid pond.
i watched for fifteen minutes
fifteen geese taking life easy

they sat or stood in the sun,
a few briefly walked a tight circle,
then sat again. content with time off
from what they do when they're busy


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

october wind and warm/
still, pancakes for breakfast were just right/
u sure?/
wait...there aren't two voices in a poem./
tell Shakespeare/
his were different/
and yours is the same?/
well, not the same...You know i made your part up, don't you?

Thursday, October 06, 2016

by request -
hey, tomc
okay, hey
it's national poetry day

i'll wait for intergalactic poetry day
and the new planet they found,
where life has just begun
a mega-gazillion miles away/

so after a giga-zillion years
it's not spinning on it's axis/
there it's still ten in the morning - day one/
what fun. spinning takes practice.

went to Oregon
bought marijuana in a store.
smoked a joint. it took three days.
didn't finish it all.
best i felt in years.
$9, it was fine.
couldn't bring any back to Ohio.
come on, America.
the young can bang heads playing football;
we old want to sit in a chair, relax
and feel good.


Monday, September 26, 2016

fog in the morning,
we used to say thick as pea soup.
now, perhaps it's broccoli du jour
jesus crimney - i mean it


Saturday, September 17, 2016

rain louder than the train

harvest moon so soon it seems,
though it's been a year;
this night i stayed in bed, didn't open the curtain to look.

Then a brilliant flash at three
and i counted the seconds eight, nine, ten, eleven...rumble.
again a flash - i counted to nine that time.
nine miles away.

i imagine the storm diminished
as i slept gain
until rolling thunder when i woke at six.
left to right, across the sky.
and the rain was louder than the train...two trains around seven.
pouring hard on and off this morning.

This night i slept well,
wrapped in good thoughts and dream.
how about'd it seem?


Sunday, September 11, 2016

that place without time

where i go in dreams
is seems/

boundless, sweet love


Thursday, September 08, 2016

Went to the grocery store
bought a ham sandwich.
At home she cut it in two.
I asked which half was mine.

While cleaning up the last of the mustard she blew all over the floor
she zeroed right on it when she said,
"Take the half that doesn't have a bite out of it."

There wasn't any mustard on it either.


Saturday, September 03, 2016

Old friends are special;
if you can deal with old coots.


i hear the softest melody
when i think of you.


Sunday, August 28, 2016

My, it's hot. even
inside air conditioned;
dampness creeps the walls
and clings to you.

Not a day to stroll shady woods.
skip that. they say it'll be cooler tomorrow.
why not sit down, relax;
sip green tea.


Friday, August 26, 2016

when it's warm out
and work is done
i'll sit quietly
and wonder.


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The whistle seemed a good idea
lets people know a train is coming.
First a guy invented the whistle,
Another said, "I can make it louder."

We live a half mile away,
over the hill and down a bit.
every morning after the train runs through town
I have to straighten the pictures on the wall.


Someday they'll find
those early morning,
ultra blasting train whistles
blew America's mind.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

already summer is moving on
don't have a final tally
the garden's given many veggies
now, it's yours to rally

took the wire from the garden,
come on, boy, don't chu dally
we win, we do; and you do too
we'll call it bunny valley


Monday, August 08, 2016

geeze cake

Seek and enjoy.
when you find, and we found
a breakfast spot, another
not a big corporate job...
a little ma an' pa,
and this one had cheesecake.

ok, not your usual breakfast fare but, how about it...
four different kinds, brought from Cleveland.
cherries, blue berries, straw berry and another..
call it a wonder berry...I can't remember.
oh, yes, to look at them is fattening. What a way to go.
I tried a, not tried, I ate a piece.
As good as I good as you can imagine.

Saturday, August 06, 2016


two eggs, two pancakes, i ordered.
the chubby waitress, embarrassed
about her glasses; still cute and kind.
and the world goes on spinning;

sipped coffee by the window.
i see giant nimbus clouds roll by.
geeze, big as old sailing ships.
thought of mocking-birds, used to hear them.
Uncle Clifford's hand pump well,
and fresh, clean, country water splashing.

then outside, a drunk on a bicycle stops traffic.
he's old enough to know better.
and the world goes on spinning.
i'm glad there is nothing for me to hang on to
or i'd write the same poem every day.

Friday, August 05, 2016


Oh, welcome thee of the illerati
now chillax.
click-bait and pocket monsters
sort them out; it will be.
i went dark yesterday, no one noticed
OMG, your guyliner is smudged

Thursday, August 04, 2016

early mornig train

slid the window open after three
dreamed clouds again until five-thirty
when, from long beyond
i heard the name say - i am train

calling low in light rain,
sweet voice, milk and thunder
clawing on wings of steel,
lonely is the night, strong, sure

swinging through, blasting,
rolling heavy on quick-wheel feet
powering around, long through, then out of town,
murmur lonely; cutting night stillness, like a blade on ice

iron maiden go, into first morning light
familiar friend, shaking windows with your power,
i smiled, low in bed, covered my head
slept another hour.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

wen fer

wen fer lunch,
place 20, count 'em 20
miles, long down on the straightaway.

going and coming back, also,
cause they more to dis story..
musta ha'seen over 'em
five, cars on the road.

I'm tellin' ya...somethin' goin' on
right hereabouts in Ohio.
i'm happy as darn about it.
Eat chur corn, Roy.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

eyebrows are

eyebrows are so
you can look startled
curious, interested,
or angry

eyelids are for winking
and closing out light
the part of the night
when you're sleeping

crying is for babies
and feeling better, after

Monday, July 25, 2016

the antique clocks run a week;
how often i must wind them.

Sunday, July 24, 2016


95 and humid a third day.
clouds belly down and booming
at noon, drop a fortune of water;
gardens are not opposed.

Friday, July 22, 2016


the extreme heat of this afternoon
creeps inside where it's cooler
and gets me sleepy
at least for a nap's worth

Sunday, July 17, 2016

cell phone dilemma

major red alert,
cell phone is missing -
the pulse of my life line.
gone but not forgotten.

went back where i had coffee.
questioned everyone repeatedly.
most seemed honest in their replies.
evidently i didn’t leave my phone there.

staggered home dejected.
instead of crying right away,
dumped big trash can in the drive.
two cops driving by stopped to watch.

i put it all back,
took a half hour,
searching the sticky mess
a piece at a time.

then brilliant idea
struck like lightening. wow.
i asked the cops to call my cell number
and put it on speakers in their car.

if the rat face sleaze at the coffee place answers
i’ll recognize his wheezy, whiny voice.
from the squad car they let me dial,
misdialed my cell number several times.

chatted with interesting people,
talked longer with the nice ones
a few wrong numbers were angry,
cops were growing impatient.

i suggested, “Lend me a dollar, i’ll call
for a medium pizza, split it three ways,
if you drive us to pick it up.”
cops were unhappy.

head down, i kept dialing.
finally got the right number.
two seconds later
my pocket rang.

Monday, July 11, 2016


tumble and never fall
clouds do


i hate cloud poems
with the word fluffy in


Monday, June 27, 2016


if cows
can talk


if cows could talk to me
that would be interesting
don't have one
haven't seen one face to face for a while

just thinking of the eyes, one eye on a side
big and brown, looking
nearly thinking of something, the cow
calm, for the most part, depends, mostly

Wednesday, June 15, 2016


Wellington, a forgotten town
a line drive 22 miles east of Norwhere
where 18 crosses 58...
the heart of nothing special but goodness.
an old, tin-pressed ceiling cafe is large, welcoming.
no music, no TV, the hum is locals talking quietly.
cheery Karen from the other day seats us.
glassed in, on the corner over coffee we view
big-rig, cross-town traffic,
the action at the center of the berg.
sipping, we decide how to take two eggs
with two pancakes...too early
for too many decisions; no rush,
all is Wellington

Monday, June 13, 2016

every 17 years

near Shiloh
The other day we heard them...
like crickets, over the hill somewhere.
I pointed so she would know
what hill they were over.

M said,"Those are locusts. They live in the
ground and come out every seventeen years."

I really glared at her. "I know that...
do you think I'm stupid?"

She paused, looked toward the hill,
then said, "That's a dumb question."

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

open window

slept by an open window,
dreamed poetry
until sunshine ran over it
and left me plowed.

good day, some say, sometime;
sunshine, here's to you
from the bottom
of my heart.

Friday, April 29, 2016

dream from where

often i have dreamed poetry,
a few words, an idea.
when writing poetry every day
my dreams were poetry ideas,

then in the morning
i'd write from those ideas.
last night i dreamed mdf: 236748,
mdf: 566924, mfg: 73479

there was a paragraph space
then another series of letters and numbers.
i had a page of these letters and numbers
all single spaced and

still sleeping i noticed what i was reading.
it was a print out i had been reading;
after a bit of time i was still sleeping when
i noticed what i was reading/dreaming

don't know what it was
but when i woke i remembered
this strange dream
and wrote it down.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

the cart

Walking into Walmart
I put my cane aside when
a mysterious voice said,
"Use the cart, Luke...use the cart."