Saturday, November 07, 2009

to the child

life is a sleeping bear
for which you must prepare
asleep on his belly
your head in fur
don’t pull his hair
be ready for when he moves
he may laugh or eat you
don’t push
it’ll get there
just be ready to react
on your toes

Friday, November 06, 2009

poetry identification

a woman i am closely associated with
call her my wife for sake of argument
wanted to know why
what i write is poetry

i responded with the old adage
that by comparison if it looks like a duck,
waddles like a duck, quacks like a duck
then it’s poetry

frog winter

scooping leaves from the pond
where the sugar maple deposits them
there is a plunk in the water
it’s forty degrees this afternoon

who did I disturb but a frog
how can they live like that
sleeping in a plastic flower pot
submerged in the bottom of the pond

making a home for the winter
be solid as the ice through the snow
then come back chirping in the spring
well, rent is free, that I know

Thursday, November 05, 2009


Keyman made two keys for me
I looked him in the eye
guaranteed they are, he said
however, they didn’t work

not the guarantee I expected
but it would have been easier
i drove back with my receipt
laid it on the counter

looked him in the eye again
2.53 is what I paid
he also worked the cash register
after checking my receipt very carefully

he gave me back 2.83
i made thirty cents for my efforts
then knew that’s why neither key worked
Keyman needs a glasses tune up

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

the pool

we found a house to make into our home
near the local swimming pool
a year round facility
so far, so good

at the pool i spoke to the boss
who explained the moderate fees
his open smiling face content
as I gazed at my reflection

in over sized fogged windows
enclosing the grandiose pool
where water temperature is constant
at 88 degrees Fahrenheit

so much for that, i was hoping
to use the pool for swimming
i’ll place a kettle on the stove
if i want to make chicken soup

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

sweet dreams baby

sweet dreams baby
i’m on your side
hang on tight
for the nighttime ride
close your eyes
and you’re on the way
good night now
tomorrow’s another day

Monday, November 02, 2009

fortune cookie

all decisions you make today will be fortunate
my fortune cookie said that to me
that’s good, I’m up to here with gloomy
right now

this cookie’s a clear sign for me to put on my shoes
I’m leaving to buy my ticket for the lottery
pitching hard luck like old cracked pottery
right now

so, you been reading my poems, you see my style
then go ahead, write stanza four
there’s my other shoe, I’m out the door
right now

Sunday, November 01, 2009

the horseback preacher

now and then in the backyard
i’ve found some things
worked up out of the soil
remnants, rusted tools,
fragments of bones, tarnished spoons

rubbing a piece of an old porcelain cup
i wonder was it Sam’s?
did they drink from this?
was it on their table?
a keepsake, a wedding gift?
to Sam and Emiline

our house was home
more than a century ago
to that horseback preacher
who lived into his eighties

when upon a time he rode
to country towns around
in all seasons
including beautiful falls like this one

sometimes in a buggy she went with
to see her family at the next town
making visits, they had little money
but, oh, friends were plenty, all knew him

he’d chat with them, stop at farms
inquire of families new animals
offer what consolation a preacher can
making the rounds

on the way in fall he and Em
would share a special apple, talk together
about the passing years, what they’d seen
their joys, heartaches, their fears

the great events, old times
and mention how seasons so quickly pass
he'd rein up, look off, then turn to her to say
my dear, it seems like only yesterday

until one day he closed his eyes the final time
and they came from miles around
to tuck him under
what is now the tallest monument in the old cemetery

next to his friends, town founders
just across the train tracks
into the shadows of the great trees
at the north border of our town
above the river

by the edge of the woods
and the end of the Indians
for his remains to spend new seasons
at his quiet spot
marking another bygone era

though even now, somewhere out there
with sweet fragrant light wind at his back
and golden sun on his smiling face
rides the spirit of the horseback preacher