Saturday, May 31, 2008

each day

learn more and work diligently
avoid haste and waste
stay calm

live in honor
give and accept compliments
stay fit

peace is the way
love is the answer
in truth you survive

pond 3

the pond is an irregular ten by fourteen feet
i put it in about ten years ago
it must be getting ripe

the fish are happy
they number about 20
they go under the lily pads and plants
in the middle of the deep end

the five frogs seem content
five? what is happening?
big frog sat in the middle
four smaller frogs hung around the sides

last year big Herb liked
the sound of my push mower
and often accompanied my mowing
"herb, herb, herb"
that's how he got his name
the call sounds like the
pluck of a loose banjo string

ohio has 15 frog species
ours are the family ranidae
and they look like uh, kinda green frogs with some yellow?

they travel in the rain
big storm coming in tonight
and unless they can dig under the wooden fence
they must be using the driveway

Friday, May 30, 2008

skip rope song

went with mary to the country
the sun was shining there
then down behind the cow barn
for a little dairy air

Thursday, May 29, 2008

one for each of us

she told me
to get out
one of each for both of us
i looked over my shoulder at her
wondered if she were kidding

three vitamins bottles
six pills
this is easy
two pills from each bottle
maybe this poem is already over

i picked up the first bottle
and tried to remember when i first opened a pill bottle
maybe i was reading comics then
and got distracted

when did they start these funny tops?
isn't the fact it is a pill bottle enough?
do they have to make the bottles tricky to open?
can't parents put pill bottles
where kids can't get them?
what happened to "no"?

oh, yeah
i was countin' pills
one for each of us
i mean, one from each bottle
make that two from each bottle
don't confuse me


morse code

in the days when i was a
ham radio operator i liked
the Morse Code best and spent my time
sending and receiving dots and dashes

send out a call to anyone who
was standing by out there
and someone replies
then a conversation began

some hams used big rigs
large antennas and fifteen hundred watts of power
or illegally more and could shake passing car windows
mine was the basic unit
a light bulbs worth of power

from Northern California i talked to
Antarctica with my one hundred watts
once i made contact with a guy in Philadelphia
who was using a rain gutter as an antenna
and ten watts of power

it's strange that you know
if you like the other person
just as quickly as when
talking to a stranger face to face
there is never any doubt
you get along with the other, or don't
not by what they say, just by
how they send the dots and dashes

Of course, even poets have a point of view, and as
with Morse Code, you can read the person in there
cause we can't hide ourselves, although we think we do.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

meri cut the grass

meri cut the grass then worked
in her garden while i sat
on the stone step
and watched some
drinking a soda pop

she does good work
sweats some, and i am ready
to hop right up and help her
but then the heat is telling me to watch a bit more
just then the library calls

kim said they have a book
for meri and i, it sounded like a trick
so i asked if it was one book
she laughed and said no
so then it is books we have!

i happily replied i'd do something about that
she told me there was no rush
we have until next monday, so i sat back down
thinking - now, today is only wednesday
of course we'd be in before next monday

did she think we'd come running
or was she being kind
or is that what they do at the library
call people on the telephone?
well, hats off to everybody!

wind's work

who watches the wind's work
sorting through a row of bushes
plucking dry leaves
i do
follow the swirl
see the swath as it's winding

there are indicators for life
signs that point the direction to follow

a something on the sidewalk
where is the tiny cause for concern
overlooked in haste?

a trip on the stairs
a dab of sleeve and mustard
an offhand thought turned remark
the song on the radio
how do accidents happen?

mark your words as they go by
point into the wind
stay alert and be keen to listen

don't save up for life
like rain in a bucket for water on a fire

the setup is now while the joke
may be years down the road
don't forget to laugh when the time comes

dust on the counter
a veiled layer of disuse
clues are a sidestep
to the rhythms of life

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

get up

609, 611, 614 a.m.
how many times i've seen
those same red numbers
day after day
what do you know, what do you say
it is an abrupt start from dream
to dawn on another day

what does it all mean?
that is the question of all time
look around, it is the same
familiar, home, sweet . . .
as i stretch out of bed
shake the cob webs outta my head
waking slowly
getting showered and dressed i catch
a glimpse of myself in the mirror and wonder
should i cut my hair or let it grow?

what is this stuff
do i really like dry cereal making noises
make a note: why doesn't it play music?
now, what do i need to take with
oh, don't forget my keys
then, out the door
wait, did i lock it?
i did

three peas

three peas balanced
on the blade of a butter knife
one is you
one is me
one is eternity

Monday, May 26, 2008

thunder in the pass

yonder there's a net
over the pond
much of it
elevated a few feet
waving just enough and
flashin' like a star

so, long before sundown
blue heron came flappin' in
sauntered right alongside
lookin' for trouble

caught him gazin' round over the rocks
like they was tombstones
but he twitched, got nervous
didn't like the looks of it
then up and left town

big frog is there
sitting on the side
on a rock above the water
puffed up on a lotta pride
kinda grinnin'
and the fish are swimming again
feeling safe
practically dancing

peace has been restored
just plain yup

a bite

of poems
i thought a thousand would do
though time has passed
i'm still not through

i could load you up
pour out my treasured best
you'd be stacked high in aces
with too much to digest

one at a time is better
so if you stumble through and snatch a few
that'll do
like the bird that occasionally
flies in an open window
who should have paid more attention
to catching insects
may find something to nibble
if he doesn't panic
and the cat doesn't find him first

perhaps some other day
there'll be a thought right for you
not too much, a line or two
even a bird flying with mouth open
is hoping, and sometimes catches a few

Sunday, May 25, 2008

poetry lesson

on poetry
know the rules
there are no other rules

start writing and then finish
or just do part
then do some more later

editing is importance
sews spelling
an rhymes good

whether you start each line
with big or small letters
is to the authors perverse discretion
so i heard
but you hear a lot of contradiction

now go for the throat
oh, and read what you wrote
too cheek four ears

i found it useful to title poems
with names coming from the heart
so as they stack up
you can still tell them apart

justice on the pond

the fish have stayed low
for several days now
afraid of something
blue herons on the prowl
maybe ten fish are gone
so i bought a net
covered the pond
no more will they get

now i worry about the frogs
maybe they're gone
but rain comes in two days
i've got to raise the net
i want everyone safe
and frogs travel in the rain
pond stuff takes time
but peace i'll maintain