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Searching for: Walt Wojtanik; 2010 Challenge


It fills my head where thoughts should be,
the deadness is an anomaly,
here alone with work to do,
I think to write a poem or two,
with past behind me, future calls
here within these empty halls.
No one here but prompting starts
releasing words within my heart.
Feelings only words can tell
in this empty lonely hell.

(49 words)

Orbison sings and I'm all ears,
for in the telling of the tale,
the loneliness rears it's ugly head.
The alternative instead would
suit me better, and if I were
a betting man, I'd say the payoff
would fill my bank. I thank
the powers that be for this respite.
I revel in its completeness,
there is a neatness in my thoughts
unmangled by the distractions around me.
I will not let my losses sour me,
I will not take a critic's words
as gospel; constructive and helpful.
I will not leave thoughts unturned
or well worded phrases for that matter.
For only the lonely will find
a clarity in their own voice,
a choice of diction depiction
that fills your muse with worth.
Where else on earth could you
find peace in solitary serenity?

(117 words)
Great starts Asiders! Finding our footing on solid poetic ground is this void of a cyber-meeting hall. Outstanding!

Nancy, seems we tapped the same vein on the last two. Your words are never out there lonely. There is a throng of us who clamor for your voice.

Brenda: Lonely in a crowded room is possible, if you truly believe. I've seen that demon.

Chev - Beginning brilliance. Out of the blocks early and I'm loving it.

Lisa - Gripping tale. Nicely done.

Brother Earl - I stand proudly in your presence my friend. You as well offer credibility to this whole venture.

Susan - A prodigal muse returns. Welcome home.

Partner? The band is really hopping today, you think? Thankfully, you're pretty light on my feet. And on our anniversary no less!

(124 words)

Free isn't lonely.
The choice to "uncleave"
is all your own.
Freedom is a long embrace
of the space one's been given,
living within oneself
comfortable in the skin you own.
People who see as lonely,
what is actually an escape,
see with only half-closed eyes.
No surprise, the half-filled glass
seeks its own level.

Lonely isn't free.
There is a price to be paid,
a ransom laid for relinquishing
the part of oneself that is life giving.
The self-proclaimed sacrificial lamb
led to the slaughter of uselessness,
when it ought to take inventory
of all it has to offer.
Stewing in the juices
of a sad lament meant
for the ears of one who cares;
falling deafly. Bereft of completion.

Being free does not render one lonely;
being lonely does not set one free.

(115 words)

Flitting aimlessly,
bounding from wall,
to fall; to flit
and fall again.
The shortest distance
is never a straight line.
Direction be damned,
wings frantic for a
perfect landing, standing
alone and still for the moment.
No presence of flame
a welcomed sight; for tonight
the moth flies unencumbered.
The one time loneliness
is a welcomed friend.

(46 words)

The train away draws
from the station a
heart has abandoned.
An upper berth for one,
done with the trappings
of unforgotten places;
faces. Traces of guilt
sifting through the ballast
of time, left blowing
always knowing this is a
temporary transfer.
The answers await
the questions formed
in the mind of self-doubt.
Not derailed; just a failed
attempt at keeping the track
clear from obstruction.
Intentions do not a
destination make, but
it denotes a willingness to
continue, drivers churning,
grounded in the belief that
this train will travel
where the lonely heart
finds its peace, happily.

(81 words)

The conversation continues
as it has for going on fifty-three years.
The scene; pastoral. The changes; few.
The bench remains the connection
of a life well lived. He sits
lost in a circumventing tangent'
that will always bring him back
to this place. She sit in silence,
her presence more a memory than not.
Joseph Crenwinkle, armed with
a multi-purpose umbrella, which he's
egos uses as the cane he reluctantly
refuses to use. Newspaper tucked
tenderly under his failing arm,
and all the charm he can fit
into the bag of peanuts he brings
faithfully for their furry friends.
It never ends, this connection,
a union long cemented in the vows
so ceremoniously expressed when
they were closer to their birth
than the reference point that sits
on the horizon. Joseph can no longer
chew the nuts, but on occasion
sucks the salt off of the red kernels,
a reminder of his youth. And he speaks.
To Effie, to the squirrels, to any
passers by who will listen to the gentle rant
of his seasoned years. "Effie?" he starts.
"Remember this spot, don't you?" He rubs
his right cheek as he looks out. It was a peck.
Nothing more. But that was a matter of perspective.
From where he sat, that first kiss
was a contract; signed and sealed, delivered
to his time worn heart. "Come for your prize?"
he questions a brown squirrel that curiously
edges closer to their seat. Joseph shells
the confection, tossing the nuts in an
underhanded motion. "Enjoy!" he comments.
"See, Effie? I still got it!" Glancing over
to the end of the bench, he smiles. "More than ever"
he says sweetly, expressing the amount of love
that continues to reside deeply within. His smile
saddens, with her inability to answer. But he knows
his smile still warms her silenced heart.
Pointing to the ball diamonds, Joseph's mind
reverts to his boyhood days. "Home.
The place I lived. On that field." he grips
an imagined baseball bat, making a half-hearted swing.
His gaze wanders to the swing sets, and the children
at play with their mothers and fathers. "Hold them close"
he chides from the distance, knowing his words are
unheard, but somehow heeded. He swallows softly
and turning in his seat his voice is sincere.
"Effie, I'm glad we can still have these moments."
Kissing his palm, it is placed it firmly
on the empty place where his wife used to rest with him.
"Same time tomorrow?" he asks, knowing well the answer.
Joseph Crenwinkle continues to sit alone.
But he is never lonely. He always has his Effie with him.

(388 words)
midnight oil burns
impatience your companion
no return in sight

(7 words)
d m, thanks for pointing out that my watch is slow. I though I was going at a poem every 54 minutes clip. I said I'd stop after I write my best poem each day. Which one is it, 'cause I don't feel it's been written yet. Thanks for the kudos. ;)

Tip o'the hat to: Salvatore, RM Atwater (Hey Buddy!), Daniel Ari, Nikki,
Sheila, De, Theresa, Marie, Laurie K., Nancy, Earl, Don, Barbara, Patricia (Feel better), Sharon, Heather, Susan, Terri French...more as I read 'em.
(83 words)

She carried herself with grace and dignity
through all the inglorious afflictions presented
on a life reclaimed on two separate occasions.
He wandered alone, in search for the salve for his lonely
heart; a lotion, only her motions could satisfy.

would come through a longing placated by the lovely
smile she possessed, a smile that kept lonely
at bay. To say it was a powerful affectation that dignified
anyone she chose to offer it to would be occasion
to celebrate the blessed fate presented.

in his life ever so briefly, she found what it took to satisfy
his need to have her. Together was an occasion
they would not let pass unheralded. Her gentle way was lovely,
Stately and dignified,
suffering in body, never in spirit, and denying his loneliness.

in the days since her presence
was taken from him, meeting an end with dignity
but making her life a gift that satisfied
his broken heart. For in remembering how lovely
she was became a welcomed occasion.

something would trigger a memory that made him much less lonely,
a reminder of the loving kind; how he felt loved
by those times he was in her presence.
They left him feeling complete; satisfied,
vindicated and dignified.

Dignity -
the grace and class that she espoused occasionally
rubbed off on him and that fact satisfied
her base instinct that he would be fine. Not so much lonely,
but with the presence
of mind to know her heart through her loveliness.

She was lovely in her dignity,
and she presented him with many occasions
to satisfy his heart. Although, through her passing, he was alone.

(244 words)

Standing in the middle of a large field,
I yield to the emptiness that possesses me.
It mocks and caresses me with the coldest hands,
squashing the boldest plans we had made.
A masquerade born from your own bout with lonely,
only to hitch your wagon to my star, hoping
I'd be coping much easier with that dilemma.

You had found your feet and my defeat
was harsh and unrelenting, presenting me with
the choice to voice my objections and re-find
some lost direction for my battered heart.
So here in this clearing, I'm hearing these voices
in my head, and they've said "together is so overrated",
but I'm less than elated since you've gone.

(110 words)

Buffalo and life is grand,
temperatures more like I can stand,
April Two and it's just steamy,
who'da thought it'd be so dreamy
Seventy-five and it's real nice,
except it seems I'm out of ice.

(32 words)
Float on lake of life
keeping head above water
be a good buoy

(10 words)

Across the lake, muse comes alive,
beauty comes to roost,
life comes to words so expressed.

Across the lake, a heart paces
the pulse of inspiration,
a contagious rendering of existence.

Across the lake, a woman accepts
the mantle she has been destined
to take up to claim her position as poet.

Across the lake, a man struggles
under the mire of muse, refusing
to silence a voice found over time.

Across the lake, the music
of a collaboration of like souls
composes the symphony of poetic thought.

Across the lake, I find that jointly
this woman and man, kindred strangers,
embrace friendship for a common cause.

Across the lake, confidently,
friends who have never met
stand abreast in the celebration of words.

Across the lake. Eerily.

(109 words)

The Niagara River run
helps provide some fun,
betwixt New York and Ontario,
it is truly number one.

It's Lake Erie that begets her,
Lake Ontario is what gets her.
Her ebb and flow is the way to go,
if the damn ice dam will let her.

Her rapid current runs quite fast,
around Grand Island she goes past,
over the gorge to down below,
her mighty fall is a real blast.

Niagara Falls, she is a mover,
her mist sprays far, you'll need rain cover,
lovers scurry for her show,
until the honeymoon is over.

(82 words)

Placid. Silent. Serene.
In the glint of moonlight,
you reverberate in my heart.
I had returned, as promised,
to this place we held dear. Right here.
Where the stars are so clear,
and the shadows cast on this stretch of sand,
point to a section of beach. Our oasis.
The call of the sea birds becomes
a soundtrack of sorts. And the crash of
Erie against the shore, stands as the only view
for my sad and longing heart..
Shards of moonlight dance, as scattered
as broken glass, across the water's murkiness,
and in the glint of moonlight I remember.
Breathless and nervous, we were.
Loving and passionate, we were.
And so in love. We were
where we were meant to be.
The heat of that moment warmed
the sand beneath my feet and
you filled my heart as you did then.
In the glint of moonlight I felt
the warmth of your smile
and the sparkle your eyes left behind,
lit this evening sky. And I fell in love again.
In the glint of moonlight.
(153 words)

He sits.
Stewing over yesterday's news,
the direction of his muse,
and the words he'd choose to use.
Nary a sound proffered,
submerged in the thinkings
of his murky madness,
a worn duress tattered
causing his verbal faux pas
and making his slips show.
But he knows that somewhere
in the depths of his insides
there hides a verse or two,
strong and vibrant, not
watered down versions
of redundancies he's mastered.
The bastard knows his next
profundity may be his last.
Writing as if there is no tomorrow,
a skipper setting his canvas
into an indecisive wind. Poetic, but
tossed in the gale, running aground.
A castaway set sail on a three hour muse.

(98 words)

Napoleonic Complex aside,
I never find the need to hide.
For my ego is an empty cup,
good to the last drop and
while it lasted, but I'm passed all that.
Battles waged with an eye on conquest;
go west young man and take a stand,
but don't forget to write.
I drench myself in poetic perspiration,
seeking my inspiration where my heart leads.
But indeed, having faced my harshest foe,
I know it will take some doing
to shore up my defenses and swing for the fences again.
I have loved and lost, and strangely love returned,
and it will be the end of me in the long run.
A war I will wage gladly; repeatedly.
My Waterloo.

(103 words)

Stage fright always comes to call
when you most expect it,
your pride will come before your fall
but don't try to dissect it.

When you most expect rejection,
you're probably going to fail,
but don't try to escape dissection,
set your wings and set sail.

You're probably going to fail
sometime, fear needn't rule your try,
set your wings and set sail then,
you'll be amazed how high you'll fly.

For sometimes fear needn't rule your try,
your talent will lift you to heights,
you'll be amazed how high you'll fly,
just give it one hell of a fight.

Your talent will lift you skyward,
and speed you along in a dash,
just give it your all and make it your night,
they'll applaud you for making a splash.

So speed yourself along in a dash,
your pride will keep you from falling,
They'll applaud your effort at making a splash,
and keep your stage fright from calling.

(137 words)
Thanks Heather. I like to dance to different music. It keeps the soiree fresh. Glad to see you stepping onto the floor with more confidence. It's bringing out your best.

Sheila, don't swoon too early in the month. I'm just getting warmed up, and there's more romance where that comes from. I scrolled down a bit quickly and was taken aback by what flashed by. I saw "PRAYER FOR WALTER" and panicked thinking, "What does Sheila know that I don't?"

Gerry, I'm usually good for a tear, a chuckle or a swoon. Glad I hit your funny bone this time around. Heather as well.

To my pretty palindrome, happy to see you making your way back into the general population. Keep your mused amused and your heart in your art, and the family will be much better off for it!

Hope the Mother and Daughter reunion is going swimmingly across the lake. Muse in absentia, but close at heart.

Beth, we like unbridled resonation here, so if it feels good to you, by all means! Thanks for the boost.

Joseph, FLOOD STORIES floats my boat.

Chev, Amy (they jump out even more since I know of which you speak),
Susan (there's no problem going to THAT well once too often. Thank you.), Iain's "Water of Life" trilogy, is outstanding. Theresa, "I Saw Water" is inspired.

Everyone has raised the bar this year. Loving this community even more. Thanks for your talent Gals and Guys.

More specifics as time allows.

(238 words)

Muted hues and portraits
of you and views of
'scapes o'er land and sea,
vibrancy surrendered
in a surreal fashion,
rife with passion and
an expression, one
stroke at a time.
Much like rhyme,
the closer you get
to realism, the nearer
your truth stands.
In your hands, tint and hue
becomes you. The rendering
of your vision finds a
clarity as you see it.
Work it until you're done.
Painting a thousand words
suitable for framing.

(61 words)

In the river of truth
you come to cleanse
your weary soul of
the indiscretion of
life's challenges.
You manage to profess
a confession; to elicit
redemption. Washed in the
current of forgiveness,
your soul is rejuvenated,
baptized into believing
that anything is possible.
Sanctified with living water,
blessed through your faith.

(39 words)
Sheila, That was awesome. As they say, "from your lips to God's ears." Don't worry about Marie. Our friend was going to pick up her daughter to spend the holiday. Her spirit is with us always.

De, good you were able to post finally. Wouldn't have been the same without you.

Amy, your muse flows like the Niagara today. Powerful and persistent.

(59 words)

A neophyte, unsure of ability,
the consummate of fair gentility,
poetic posturing her new dance,
if she gave her muse a fighting chance.

And he, no veteran as they go,
ensconced knee deep in Buffalo,
writing rhyme, a haiku harrier,
reaching across this Great Lake barrier.

The poetess, her verse inspires,
fueling his poetic pyres,
And poet, his sheer numbers "wow" her,
with assumed poetic power.

A stretch to think their muse would tie
their muse together, eye to eye,
across the lake, this eerie connection,
a proving ground of poetic perfection.

As the water rolls and churns,
confidence and strengths are learned,
prodded with a gentle hand,
this fair lady and gentle man.

From Toledo to Buffalo,
a "handshake", and "away we go",
connected how we ought to be,
Across the Lake, Eerily!

** "Across the Lake, Eerily" is the name of the shared blog Marie Elena Good and I have collaborated on to fuel our poetry and observations, based on our mutual and strangely similar connection to our Lake Erie divide. The "water" prompt is right up our shipping lane.

For the curious, our link is http://aleerily.blogspot.com

(167 words)

The voice of reason,
from within, in any season.
Verbal bandy rife with rhyme.
Occupies the glut of time.
In my life the words have flowed
commensurate to how I've grown.
Not in girth as you hear it,
but in in love and heart and spirit.
Partly because it is my choice,
the expression of my inner voice.

(54 words)
Got up with the birds this morning Jeremy. A lot to do, so little time (but always time for rhyme!) Good morning back at you.

Thanks Beth. That first one is always just impulse. It sets the tone for my day. Your work is catching my eye in a very good way. Thanks for you additions.

Carla, the emotion jumps out of that one. Thanks to you as well.

(66 words)

It's not that I am pompous,
I cannot toot my horn,
it's just I had a way with words,
from the first day I was born.

I started out with basics,
"Mom" and "Pop" did rule,
A vocabulary that increased
the day I started school.

Kindergarten planted seeds,
that bore a fruitful bounty,
nouns and verb and other words,
more bits that I could count, see?

Cat to hat to baseball bat,
fell like fallen trees,
the syllables were palpable,
fueling my word anxiety,

Curious as the day is long,
an inquisitive canary,
that question were a bit too much,
"Go check the dictionary"

So now I am expressive
with words I have amassed,
though other poets, I am sure,
would love to kick my ass.

But in pursuit of poetry,
I'm just part of the chorus,
thanks of course to a mounting muse,
and devouring a thesaurus.

(127 words)

The passing of time.
The great healer,
has lost her magic touch.
The chasm of moments
shared, and canyons forded,
grows large, and wide and deep.
My chore would be less hard, I'm sure
if you didn't haunt my every moment.
It's been a year, and you're still here,
buried in my heart; this unrelenting
aching has been a constant.
I loved you as I always will,
for I can't change what was,
But these thoughts inside
I'd just soon tuck away, but
your spirit would not let me.
A tourniquet around my chest
would not be as impeding,
so this flow of ink upon my page
will be my way to honor you
and your place in my life.

(105 words)

A muse in waiting,
in the starting blocks to run
the race of resonant rhyme.
He'd be crazy not to express his heart,
he'd be just as crazy to do it.
Baring a soul dragged through the trenches,
a thirst and hunger, unquenched
and never sated, fated to be
a man of many words with a way
to use the tools given. Driven
to write the verse of his life,
in the company of friendly strangers,
in spite of the dangers that present themselves.
Writing at a surreal pace, laughing
in the face of expression for the sake
any concession he gives to battle
the trappings of a broken heart.
In the long run, his madness is only
partially responsible for his verse.

(108 words)
Thanks Carla for your kind words.

Anders, I appreciate your comments as well, but I am merely just another poet in this stable of talent. Marie-Elizabeth Mali is the deserved and current Poet Laureate of PA, and I wouldn't deny her that recognition. Thanks though.
(43 words)

Concentration wanes,
I struggle through my muse,
a mother and her daughters,
more noise than I can use.

A battle for the bathroom,
sharing space and time,
fighting over make-up
messing up my rhyme.

Waiting for some new thoughts
to shake up my mangled mind,
and a quiet corner somewhere,
something I'll never find.

(43 words)

An enigma am I
a man with a story,
not often told,
no pretender to glory.
A common guy with
a common cause,
for the common good
please hold your applause.
In fifty-six
I got my start,
frail of leg
but strong of heart.
A creative eye
and a lovers soul,
silver tongue,
or so I'm told.
Middle of seven,
but one of a kind,
not athletic
but sharp of mind.
An ear for music,
and eye for beauty,
a caring brother,
a son of duty.
Lost in the crowd,
sad and shy,
just your introvert
average guy.
Met me a girl
to love for my life,
sadly for us
she'd not be my wife.
But a true inspiration,
with all that she'd given,
my pulse, my heartbeat,
my reason for living.
So through these words
I bide my time
A poet of sorts,
a writer of rhyme,
paying her homage
through her sad affliction
to celebrate life,
the strange contradiction.
Through life as in death,
this passion regaled her
with hopes in my heart
that my love never failed her.
And so through this craft;
these words and this rhyme,
my persistence continues
and will for a time.

(152 words)

They call it recliner,
A chair with a notion
To help you relax
with a half laying motion.
Feet raised to aid you
achieve your nirvana,
for a quick forty winks
or to read if you wanna.
I love my recliner,
it's a seat I enjoy
and I'm honored
it's named after me...La-Z-Boy!

(46 words)

Not in a hurry to learn to drive,
But eventually did at nineteen.
in a 1972 Satellite wagon,
a tank in hunter green.

Not a "chick magnet" by any stretch,
but it served its purpose quite well,
and once I learned the rules of the road,
I drove like a bat out of hell.

The first car I owned was a Duster,
I loved its power and lines,
in my powder blue demon, I would go screamin',
happy this baby was mine.

A Seventy-Seven blue Firebird,
replaced my Plymouth in kind,
I drove her fast, giving her gas
and letting her engine unwind.

A silver bird from 1980,
a succession of Pontiac pride,
she was faster and sleeker by far,
a beautifully wonderful ride.

The birth of a daughter had changed things
and my vehicle choices did too,
a family man with a Blazer in hand,
driving like family men do.

And as my brood grew my car did too,
a lumbering green mini-van,
not a "chick magnet" by any stretch,
but it's doing the best that it can.

(155 words)
Those who forget past
are destined to repeat it
history reruns

(8 words)

History is a chronicle of past events.
History is the moment we are in now.
The story changes continually,
not in a rewriting of it,
but in the reliving of its relevance
to every breath we take.
The birth of a child,
the death of a parent,
the loss of a love so true,
all become our legacy.
And each step helps to mold
future events in our ability
to accept and deal with such episodes.
It is said "Time and Tide wait for no man".
But it is Time's Tide of motion and emotion;
the constant ebb and flow of existence,
that tinctures our lives
in a prescient way. A moment in time,
a part of our history; it's no mystery.
We change things with each passing moment.

(118 words)
FEBRUARY 3, 1959

"...and the three men I admire the most,
the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost,
they caught the last plane for the coast,
the day the music died." ~Don McLean from "American Pie"

Three they came singing praises
in Clearlake, Iowa in the days
of a Rock 'n Roll infancy,
on the day that I turned three
a crash; none survived although
the music didn't die at all.
The music lives within our heart,
spawning copy cats, inspiring the starts
of the Beatles and Stones;
the list never ends. For Bopper (the father),
and Valens (the son), riding the cusp
of the Holly ghost, the world lost three
minstrels of song, but their musical
legacy lives on and on.

(105 words)

Went for a run this morning,
I ran all day yesterday too.
I wished I didn't head for the track
after eating all those prunes.
The bananas did not bind me,
neither did the cheese.
One more cramp and I'm so sure
it'll have me on my knees.
I better cut this short,
the running urge compels,
I think I'll spend another day
run, run, running like hell.

(58 words)

"There is something I need to tell you"
as I lead her to a chair for a sit.
"Now, this won't be to easy for you to hear
but I had better get on with it."

"See, for over a year I've been 'occupied',
lost with my head in the clouds,
I wanted to tell you, but knew you would yell,
and Honey you yell fairly loud."

"The moments at night that you wonder
where in the world I could be,
well, you see I've been sneaking..."
Her interest was piquing, with doubts of my fidelity.

"She's quite a remarkable mistress,"
I heard myself starting to say,
"She gives what I need when I need it;
she's holding my wild heart at bay."

"I've taken her down to the lake shore
to walk in the wet wave swept sand,
with the sound of the gulls acapella,
She's quite magical here in my hands."

"She shows me that life is a wonder,
most precious of gifts to behold,
with mirth and emotion, and puerile devotion,
she fills me right down to my soul."

"I whisper sweet things in the night time
only to hear how it sounds,
she rolls off my tongue, and when I am done,
I'm ripe for a couple more rounds."

"A few of my friends think I'm crazy,
the rest think I'm wasting my time,
but, the ones most approving can feel the earth moving
without knowing the reason or rhyme."

"In the darkness of my empty old homestead,
We get lost in a heartfelt embrace,
With thoughts of me growing right there, and knowing
the intimacy of that vacant space."

"I can't break away from her power,
A spell cast from the very first word,
You've given me chances, but this new romance is
The most beautiful thing that I've endured."

The hurt in her eyes was heartbreaking,
the sound of her voice mixed with sobs,
she sought her composure to give her some closure,
while I felt like an insufferable slob.

But she gathered herself in an instant,
I could see the words form in her head,
when she started to speak, I turned rather meek
and just listened to what she had said.

"I don't know why you need to torture me,
my heart is about to explode."
The hell and the fury of this woman scorned
is about to make her thoughts implode.

"Who is she?" she said. "No, I don't want to know,
Just leave me to process this scene"
Now fire and anger soon put me in danger
I never had seen her so mean.

"Are you telling me, you're having an affair?"
I panicked, "Yes, all right? It's the end!"
"Oh good" she exhaled. "For a minute there,
I thought you were writing again."

(411 words)

Meanwhile, in a new part of Western New York,
the internet idiocy continues,
with a new angle, my inbox is strangled
as more filth and nonsense ensues.

There's just too many folk with an obsession
concerning the size of my manhood.
Bigger, better, wider, wetter
none of it does me any good.

My finances also spark interest,
my mortgage can use an upgrade,
pay off those bills, go for a sail,
click on this and your day will be made.

You've won the grand prize in a contest,
you never had entered before,
these coupons and savings will have you just raving
with investment deals here by the score.

You don't know me but I need to be your friend
to talk about old times we've missed,
and bountiful babes could be my sex slave,
for no bigger cost than a kiss.

Forgive me but I wasn't born yesterday,
not even the day before that,
don't sell me your pills to cure all my ills,
and I don't need to neuter my cat.

E-mail me if you know me,
tag me if we have been friends,
but don't waste my space if I don't know your face,
and hopefully this spam-jam will end.

(My apologies Amy)
(181 words)
My Weight Watcher Tracker has busted a staple,
from logging eat bite, lick and taste,
if I chewed on this paper, I'd probably be safer
and the pulp wouldn't go to waist.

I've had it to here, but again I fear,
that my belly lapped over my belt,
and just a year later, I thought I'd feel greater,
but this is the worst that I've felt.

I'm munching my thumbs and crunching the numbers
to see how many points I have eaten.
I'd give up for trying, and I'm really not lying,
I hate giving up when I'm beaten.

So I'm putting more movement into my routine,
and watching my servings religiously,
and I write it all down, this Weight Watching clown
so I'd fit in my swim trunks, prestigiously.

No whale on the beach; have a goal within reach,
but my pen has a penchant for fibbing,
and I'll get on the scale, up a pound (never fails),
but believe me I'm really not nibbling.

Too Much Ingestion it seems has swelled my ranks,
and my jeans weren't stretch denim when I bought 'em,
Now I'm stepping up pace, and not stuffing my face,
to win this Battle of Bulge that I'm caught in.

(181 words)

Our PTA hired them
a CPA to figure out
and PDQ what the
IRS wants them to do,
concurrent with the GNP.
A member of the GOP,
in the grand old USA,
card carrying member of AARP
and the AAA, attended
his weekly AA meeting
where he acquired an STD
from undercover FBI agent.
He notified the CIA to have
them cooperated with the LAPD,
to infiltrate the SLA.
The Captain who attended MIT
had maxed his score on the SAT.
So the bureau sent out an APB,
in hopes of capturing the BMOC
for some Q&A.
Meanwhile, the NFLPA filed suit
with the NLRB for no apparent reason.
But a SNAFU at HQ prompted
the SGT to deliver a briefcase
to both UN and NATO,
full of directives from the EU.
Upon further inspection, the NAACP
was up in arms over the KKK's attempt
to TKO their organization.
Over at NASA,
a tank on LOX was diverted from the JPL
to LAX on it's way to NYU.
But a wrong turn put the convoy on the QEW
and ended up in TO instead.
So a gather of scientists from RCA, and IBM,
and a smattering of professors from RIT
figured it was A-OK to book some room
at the YMCA for the CONFAB with SAC and the USMC.
The UAW and the AFL-CIO stood in solidarity
to ratify the contract at GM, which was SOP.
And when it all landed as a skit on both SNL
and SCTV, the people in charge of ADM were PO'd.
In the end it was decided, it was TMI

(231 words)
Thanks for getting it Marie. Those were all situations I wrote about in the past year. My daughters both get and appreciate where their writing skill come from. My wife for some reason sees my writing as a major waste of my (and her) time. She's doesn't read any of it, so she doesn't understand it. But it is what sustains me, so I do it when I can. Also why weekends are a struggle to get on and post. Yeah I know, you couldn't tell.

Richard - Thanks. There were many more I toyer with using, but hten it surely would have been TMI.

Randi, thanks as well. Yeah, I missed me too!

Gerry and Amy, enjoying both of your immensely.

Back to the grind for now!

(123 words)

Fleet of foot and graceful,
long of leg and desirable.
A new world to explore,
rife with danger and adventure.
Given to the dictates of nature,
beauty resounds through
this precious creature.
And the lovely maiden in
th buckskin, ain't bad either.

(35 words)

Pocahontas runs swiftly,
as swiftly as the wind in the trees
whispering in the colors of life.
She thinks, "Captain John Smith,
you pursue but must go far
to catch Pocahontas, for if you are
determined and resourceful,
you may have my hand. Your weapon,
will not be that rifle you carry,
it will be the longing in your heart"
She leaves him in her trails.

Brother Deer runs swiftly,
as swiftly as the rapids of the mighty river,
telling tales in the hues of creation.
It thinks, "Lady, move your ass,
or get out of my way, that guy with
the gun, he means business!"
It leaves him in its trail.

(99 words)

The spell has been cast,
thrust into the darkness,
deprived of the presence of light.
Conjoined and consumed;
a sinister sisterhood.
A barbaric brotherhood.
Lead in a macabre dance,
deceived by the lightness
of their steps, releasing
the magic within; a denigration
of all life forces. Terror in
the transference of evil, deceit
looks down from the depths of hell.
Witches of a like soullessness,
in control. Relinquishing life;
extinguishing the light.

**Flight of the Witches, by Francisco de Goya
(67 words)
Deerest Memories

The lithe doe, sure of foot
and most beautiful of God's creations,
lifts its head from the silent river
to watch the maiden Pocahontas race by.
Lifting her snout, she sniffs, and the doe
recalls. Strong was he. And wise;
a leader and a teacher. A father
and a mate. Proud and handsome,
he stood tall amongst the wandering herd.
And she is amused in her thinking;
he had never run so swiftly before.
She is lured from the stream, hurried
to follow, in the memory of her buck.

** Pocahontas, by Annie Leibovitz
(84 words)

I lay on the floor and cower,
futile my attempt to cover
and conceal myself. The howls
and screeches of my despair
become my mantra most disturbed.
In my solitude I feel the
vibrant steps of the demon
in this dance of darkness.
It's sheath whips violently
in the winds of tumult, a rant
more hideous and heinous, than
angry and obtrusive. They float.
They soar. They descend to mock me.
In my eyes, the terror is palpable.
In my throat, my heart beats erratically.
And in my mind, I am swept away
in the torrent of sardonic misery.
They descend. Carrying my lifeless soul,
they've returned to seal my insanity.
Blood curdling are my rampant screams,
a pulse of a frantic fanatic failing.
My madness lifts my head; my eyes
deceived and faulted. I am alone.
Can you save me?

** Flight of the Witches, by Francisco de Goya

(129 words)
Thanks Robert. I'm looking for the less obvious viewpoint. I'm the guy on the floor. I even scared myself with this one.

Linda, Karen and Amy, I appreciate it. It's what drives me.

(31 words)

Witches indeed!
The troupe continues
the rehearsal in darkness.
Clowns, hideous in appearance
spiral down; descending on
the unsuspecting fools.
Calliope pipes hiss and hum,
dancing midair until the
crescendo of applause
triggers a new ascent.
Shielding myself from their
sarcastic sight, my inner child.
Clowns are witches indeed.
I've always hated clowns.

** Flight of the Witches, by Francisco de Goya

(53 words)
No problem Iain, as long as you share the apparent vilification for being a "guy".

(14 words)
Sorry Penny. It was an underlying theme. You just happened to give it a name. Yep, there is a difference. I sit corrected.
(22 words)

Thinking on my feet
not usually a problem,
but with a head full of concrete
I'm have to wait.
Time at a premium,
I must hold my thoughts
until I have time
to see what muse wrought.

(33 words)
** having - Line 4
(4 words)

Day breaks and I struggle
not lucid or fluid,
just a wisp of myself.
A long night of sleeplessness
exacts its ire
upon a mind tired and wanting.
Still, my muse summons,
work to perform and miles to go
before I think of slumber.
Lumbering through the day lit hours,
I bide my time until the shadows
go into hiding and I find myself
holding on until the sunset calls.

(60 words)

Until my heart beats again, I will wait,
and remain the victim of my fate.
Without a sense of hopelessness, I find
enough reasons to keep you on my mind,
thoughts of you to which I can relate.

A distant love to languish at the gate
between despair and life we celebrate,
compassion of a good and gentle kind
until my heart beats.

The chasm, although wide, is not so great
to leave me standing near the ledge of hate,
for feelings so destructive will unwind
the love of life it took so long to find.
I will remain this victim of my fate
until my heart beats.

(97 words)

Until the tide returned
the sand beneath our feet
always held the essence of our love
and the memory of us together
always brought her here,
until the waves washed us away.

And when we were washed away,
the one thing that always returned
was the special times we had here,
always bringing us to our feet
face-to-face, together
to express the verity of that love.

It is said, "There is life, where there is love"
So what reason is there to lock life away
when all I was before we were together
never left or needed to be returned,
keeping me firmly on my feet
to continue to love as if she were still here.

For her heart still resides here,
beating the tempo that drove this love;
a beat that moved our feet
in this tender dance, in a way
that said, love given will be equally returned
in an eternal state of together.

taught me all I could be without her here
because since I have returned
to the soulful expression of our love,
I know she's never far away;
she's always at my feet.

And even in life's defeat,
we will remain, heart and soul, together.
Herr influence will never be far away.
Her memory will keep her right here.
And that will be the legacy of our love,
until the day our connection is returned.

Her heart that once had been placed at my feet
beats in me still, keeping us together in love.
Always here; never far away.

(219 words)
Until sunset falls
words are expressed by sunshine
poetry of light

(8 words)

Night falls and I come to stand
in the darkness corner of lost love,
and if given the chance to illuminate
this broken heart, the lamp of wisdom
would be on my side. A knowing heart
can see things in the dark, that
the naked eye sometimes tends to overlook.
Ans as you lurk in the shadows I can sense
your breath; it is a breeze that rustles
the leaves and tousles my hair.
I can hear the faintness of heartbeats
as it had come to synchronize itself with my own.
A tingle on my fingertips is the sensory
meandering of your skin as its tactile reach
becomes like the gentle caress of a mother
and her infant. And long after the stars
are extinguished and a black pall engulfs
all it surrounds, my search will continue.
Until my eyes no longer see, I will not falter.
Be assured, my heart will find you.

(147 words)
Unfortunately, typing with my eyes closed is not recommended. Here is my last with the typos repaired.


Night falls and I come to stand
in the darkest corner of lost love,
and if given the chance to illuminate
this broken heart, the lamp of wisdom
would be on my side. A knowing heart
can see things in the dark, that
the naked eye sometimes tends to overlook.
And as you lurk in the shadows, I can sense
your breath; it is a breeze that rustles
the leaves and tousles my hair.
I can hear the faintness of your heartbeat
as it had come to synchronize itself with my own.
A tingle on my fingertips is the sensory
meandering of your skin as its tactile reach
becomes like the gentle caress of a mother
and her infant. And long after the stars
are extinguished and a black pall engulfs
all it surrounds, my search will continue.
Until my eyes no longer see, I will not falter.
Be assured, my heart will find you.

(161 words)

Dance with me Cinderella,
your beauty enhances my night.
Not quite a prince,
but I think I do alright.
All eyes fall upon you
the subject of leers and sneers,
but you walk into my arms
and extinguish all my fear.
You are the fairest maiden
the lightest on your feet,
and such an intellectual,
the smartest that I'd meet.
Let me be your humble servant,
the man to light your world,
let me lift your banner high
and let our hearts unfurl.
Dance with me while time allows
for it would be a sin,
that at the stroke of midnight
I revert back to a pumpkin.

(89 words)

The power of persuasion
in the palm of my hand.
No screwing around,
it's hammer time.
One mighty swing,
one fell swoop,
and I drive the point home.
(25 words)

My father's favorite ploy,
keeping us at bay for a time.
When the questions became
incessant and repetitive.
"Go get my left-handed monkey wrench."
was always his command.
And I would stand for
more minutes than I'd admit to.
"Nope, that's not it!" he laughed.
But eventually, he answered
questions with a lesson in mind.
I never did find
his left-handed monkey wrench.

(52 words)

A funny tool the awl.
A nail with a handle.
Poking holes and
marking things.
I never saw the point
of an awl.

(19 words)

nearly digested,
finding what to say
in a slightly different way.
With it at hand
my order is its command.
I love my rhyming dictionary,
but my thesaurus will not tarry,
in offering a better way
to articulate the things I say.
It is my most favorite dog-eared tool,
to see it near makes me salivate heavily.

(46 words)

The editing tool of choice
for those who have a voice
a way with words or phrases
absurd deletion control in phases.

Mistakes think you rub them
the wrong way for sure,
for unwanted marks,
you make them obscure.

But thanks to the wonder
of that little white bottle,
your discovery is ...

...the greatest invention!

(45 words)
Huh, that's weird! A part of my poem was obliterated. The last stanza should have read:

But thanks to the wonder
of that little white bottle,
your discovery is not worth the mention
since White Out is the greatest invention!

How the heck did that happened?

(40 words)
Sam, the problem is you've decided to participate in the April Poem-A-Day challenge. That has been the nature of the beast when the glut of submissions hits such rapidity. A necessary evil I'm afraid (as much as the inability to indent, italicize, etc.) Some have accepted it and deal with it, some continue to curse the darkness. Frustrating? Yes. Debilitating? In a way. Cause to cease submitting? Not on your life. Want further proof? Ask Marie Elena or Hannah Gosselin to explain "Prompt Code Poetry" to you. Don't give up the ship. We're all in the same boat. Full rudder ahead.

(100 words)
Thanks Shar, I try! :)

(4 words)
Darn it, see what you malcontents did!
One got through! Automated poets!
As is the market wasn't hard enough already!!!
(17 words)

My father's will was read.
The spoils were divided
equally, laden with kitsch
and trinkets were we.

Mom's silver set,
Dad's electronic equipment,
insurance policies and stocks.
And from the master carpenter,

the tools of his trade.
Four sons and an in-law,
all inclusive in the lottery.
Circular saws and power drills,

routers and sanders. And "The Box".
An old wooden tool chest
hand-made from scraps of
discarded railroad lumber,

born of boxcars gone to decay.
It's contents were as hideous:
rusted hammers and files,
a hand saw and blunted chisels,

seized up pliers and assorted
hardware. My brothers snickered
under their hands as my name
became attached to the box.

And they certainly did not
understand my smile at the
bequest. I knew the box.
The tools were more ornamental

than functional. They represented
life as I had come to know it.
The tools belonged to my grandfather,
Walter Francis; handed down to my father,

Walter Edwin and handed down to me.
Walter Joseph, was the third carpenter
in possession of the tools that
helped build my hometown; my childhood

home. These were a treasure given
to one that my father knew would
appreciate and know the significance
of the toolbox. I have much of which

to be thankful. Under my father's tutelage
I have honed my carpentry skills.
I learned to respect the tools of the trade.
I have come to cherish the toolbox.

Sadly, there are no more Walters
to claim the grail. But there is
a Melissa who has learned to swing
her great-grandfather's hammer very well.

(219 words)

My father had a simple rule
by which he did abide,
when cutting wood for projects,
and maintaining workman's pride.

To keep from buying extra wood
and looking like a dunce,
take your tape and measure twice,
and only cut it once.

(39 words)

I was my father's helper
from an early age. Always
holding things for him,
his hammer, his tape measure,
and with an apron full
of nails or screws, I held
whatever he needed, learning
every step of the way.
"Here Sonny, hold it."

He came home one day with
the station wagon full of wood,
a project in the planning.
"I'll need your help" he'd say.
"Want to help me hold the wood?"
My brothers shied away from
being Dad's helper. I always
saw an opportunity to learn
something from our bond.

Down in his workshop we toiled,
him feeding the boards through
the spinning blade of his table saw;
me holding the planks up as they came through.
I learned that safety always came first.
I also learned that sometimes, things
can go wrong. Terribly wrong.
We thought maybe it had been a dulling blade,
or a hard knot in the board as he cut.

Jammed in the kerf of the second last piece,
the saw kicked back, yanking the wood out of my
soft grip. The board came back wedging itself
into my father's chin. The wound immediately
soaked his shirt a deep crimson. It seemed
I had three hands,pulling the plug out of the wall,
grabbing a clean towel from the laundry, and
pulling the wood from his gash, all at once. Pressing the towel tightly to his bleeding chin I helped him upstairs.

He drove to the hospital as I sat beside him
towel compress in place. "Hold it Sonny, hold it"
he said through gritted teeth. It was a short drive,
but it seemed to take forever. Dad collapsed at the
Emergency Room door, but the towel never left his face.
Twenty stitches inside and out left him sore
and slightly embarrassed for the example he had set.
But it also left him with a cleft chin which in its way,
rivaled Kirk Douglas', handsome in a twisted way.

(285 words)

Behemoth of his power tools,
the table saw did indeed see
years of action. Many cuts made;
many piece trimmed.

It belonged to him, my Dad.
Skilled carpenter; an artist with lumber.
When the saw ran, the screech and hum
was unmistakable. The sawdust hung,

suspended in air; a slightly burnt smell
of wood and electrical ozone filled
each breath. The sound of the table saw
meant Dad was home, hard at work.

When he passed away, the saw fell silent.
The whole house did really. It was apparent
the was no longer life here at "home".
There was no saw dust; there was no hum.

Walking through the empty house, it no longer
felt like home. Nothing would changes that.
Or I thought so anyway. Cleaning out his
workshop offer many unfinished projects he had

left so due to his illness. The entire shop
was as he left it the last time he work in it.
A pile of wood sat in the rack, a canvas without
its Picasso. Mantle shelves, I thought.

I brought down the boards to the table top,
measuring lengths and marking cut lines.
Goggles covered my eyes, and the guard was in place
over the spinning blade. I flipped the switch.

The motor moaned to a start. When the saw ran,
the screech and hum was unmistakable.
The sawdust hung, suspended in air;
a slightly burnt smell of wood and electrical ozone

returned. The sound of the table saw
meant I was back home, at least once more.
The shelves now hang in my living room, reminders
of my Father and the hum of his table saw which I inherited.

(245 words)

Learned from the Master,
everything in its place,
and a place for everything.

Thus, the shop aprons.
Neck to knees,
you were covered

in heavy denim,
haltered around the neck
tied in the back.

And pockets?
A pencil pocket over
your right breast;

the left side
held your note pad.
Across the waist were

pockets for nails and screws,
a hammer loop and
a pouch for your tape measure.

All close at hand;
all within reach.
Everything in its place.

(61 words)

through magnetism
a data eliminator
near my hard disk drive
(9 words)

No toolbox is complete
without your presence inside.
Stops the transmigration
of things that shouldn't slide.
A strip of your adhesion
is sure to keep thing still.
"Clamp on a roll"; you're in control
and I guess you always will.

(33 words)

In the shadow of my father,
a chip off the old man,
hands are scarred and calloused
rhythm to beat the band,

a style all my own with a way with words,
a self-made nonconformist,
classic look of a class clown
in the foggy mist.

Hair is slightly balding
but not enough to notice
scraggly beard from time to time
but not enough to notice.

A smile when it is needed,
a scowl to push the issue,
a softness in this heart of mine,
that will require a tissue.

(74 words)
3/4 (Waltz Time)

Poised at his keyboard
tapping a melodic Morse Code
in attempts to attach
music to the lyrics
so long languishing
in the silence of his mind.
Black and white; keys on his Yamaha,
notes on his page, the
transparency that he claims
as his life. More a complex
ditty than the symphony
his heart envisioned.
Enraptured with the progression,
an instrumental awaiting a name.
Much like the compositions
left in hiding from his anxiety.
Songs where his words dance
across the page in time to
the effort he expounds.
Slow and steady, a simple
box step in a closeness of
a shared heartbeat. A pulse.
1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3, turn.
Walt's time worn thin.
The one-song glory he's come to own.

(97 words)

Stashed into a closet,
your hideous life gone searching
for the face of reason. A persona
put out there for the public to view;
a mask to fuel the masquerade you have assumed.
A charlatan; a repulsive micro-manager
of a well oiled muse. Refusing to accept
the rightful place to rest your laurels.
In time, your mind tires and your words fail,
you flail for the grasp of a master,
but the best the bastard can do
is whitewash his canvas, and begin anew.
With words that never grow old, a well protected
portrait of a paltry poet's posing.

(89 words)

A son placing fourth in a field of seven,
born on a day the music would die, with
childhood memories, that remain heart warming and grounding.
Dodging barbs of an inebriated father that I would come to adore,
even as I stood by to watch his alcoholism nearly destroy us.
Finding early on, a penchant for music and words; the music of words.
Growing in compassion and fashioning my deeds on a need to love,
heartily and unconditionally any who cross my path.
I find myself always searching for the best way to express myself
judiciously with a muse fueled with a mix of
kindness and kerosene, sight unseen but felt in each nuance
love exposes. A devotion to family; to brothers and sisters of the same
mother and father, developing in my own unique way,
not a cookie cutter of the people who not
only gave me life, but also
provided the tools I'd need to succeed,
quietly making my marks on the world
regaling it with all I have to offer.
Surrounded by like minded greatness I
try to live up to a standard set early on.
Under the surface, I think I did alright,
verifying what my mother always said,
"Wally, there is nothing you can't do!"
Xeroxed and hanging on my wall, those words
yield this determination to live with the
zeal this gift of life constantly requires.

(211 words)
54deg 40' or Fight!

My angst was debilitating
on my fortieth birthday,
a day I dreaded for some reason.
A child in the sixties,
trusting anyone over thirty
was not an advised undertaking.
Forty seemed ancient.
But sitting before you
is this child of fifty-four,
with more fire in his belly
and more compassion in his heart,
than I would have imagined on the
thirteenth anniversary of my birth.
My weight is a caloric roller coaster,
a thrill ride into oblivion,
taking my hair, and cholesterol
and blood pressure along for the loop.
Battling a colon that has resorted to fighting dirty,
and hoping my last bit of sleep
would keep from being just that.
I served my time as a lover.
Now, I lace up my gloves and keep
my right up and don't let my guard down.
I'm happy in my position;
a pompous poet with a passion
for delivering the words my heart
is intent on hiding. Surviving the life,
fifty-four, forty, of fight!

(139 words)

An obsession of sorts
four who came, saw and conquered,
Vene, Vidi and Richie on drums.
And in the milieu of musical muse
I see myself in their number,
not the fabulously faux Sullivan
mugging for the crowd.

In '64 I had just turned eight,
a crusted Dippity-Do helmet for hair,
that when washed and left to hang loose,
was a Beatle Bob. Six days into my eighth year
they came here, came to America to change
everything I knew until then; mesmerized
before the Black and White Hypnotist.

Camera angles change, highlighting each
member of the band. We knew the names:
John, Paul. George and Ringo. But the men
we hadn't come to know until the passing years.
It was then I saw it; I am the Beatles.
Not air guitar and yeah, yeah, yeah.
No, no, no, that wasn't it.

I am Paul.
Then, he had the bounce of youth,
he had the looks and more talent that
any of the others. But in his later years,
he writes his music in fear that someday
his head will run out of his allotment of words
and he would be silenced. With reckless abandon, he writes. I am Paul.

I am George.
Quiet and disarming, alarmingly spiritual,
a little dance and a lead guitar, Krishna
in his pocket and a mouth full of God knows what
for teeth. Philosophical and mercurial, a passion
for the essence of all life holds. Nothing consumes life,
all things will pass. I am George.

I am Ringo.
Quirky and self-effacing, straight-laced
with a sarcastic twist. Rhythm to beat the band.
In the background, keeping pace for those who
take the lead. One of a breed all his own,
not over-blown, not the original but trying hard
to be better than Best. I am Ringo.

I am John.
Assumed leader, wrapped in words of wit and wisdom,
Ever changing, and still remaining John. Passion
for his one true love. Expressive, analytical,
sometimes political, love him or hate him, there was
no silencing him. Seeing the world though
kaleidescope eyes, no surprise, I am John.

The music remains, and I am mused and amused,
seeing a bit of fab in my faults and foibles,
not an obsession after all; an observation,
a self-examination, a determination that
an expressed voice can change things, move people,
open eyes and invoke a response in a clap, a scream,
a faint or a gunshot. I am the Beatles.

(356 words)
Looks to me you found some very expressive words there. Take each little gift for what it is. And celebrate it. You'd be surprised how gratifying it can become!
(28 words)
Goo, goo, g'joob to you as well, Genevieve!
(7 words)
Gerry, here's your chance. Running off to visit colleges with my youngest and have zero time. That's scary enough. It's all yours. Later Peeps.
(23 words)

Domineering and obnoxious,
she rides rough-shod over
the familial grounds.
A headless horse's ass,
never thinking before she
severs your bloodlines.
Always in the shadows of your thoughts;
more sad than scary, is she.
Speaking in tongues and logic
you never understood, you
back away slowly. Stop her,
before she speaks again!
Your wife can't help from whence
she originated. A dark pall
falls over your life, thanks to
your wife's mother entering the room.
She creeps me out. My Mother-in-law.

(Okay, so I had a little time for a silly one. Ciao, Poets!)

(82 words)

First drafts do appease me,
I'm a first story man.
Which works wonders for my vertigo,
I always take a stand
here on terra firma,
is where my feet belong,
going up a few stories
for me would sure be wrong.
Ladders do not lift me up,
elevators scare me,
escalators aren't the worst,
their moving stairs, but spare me.
If I must rise, I close my eyes,
until I'm where I'm going,
but you can tell, I am not well,
my knocking knees are showing.

(71 words)

Francois Binoche was mad,
as mad as scientists come.
Monique, his assistant was mad as well,
madly in love with Francois.

Binoche did experiments,
to regenerate dead skin,
looking for the right formula
and what kind of things to put in.

He found that leeches could be used
to increase the flow of blood,
Monique who kept the shelves well stocked
didn't think leeches were good.

So as Francois called for ingredients,
Monique, she stirred the elixir.
But when he asked for the leeches,
fly larvae took the place in the mixer.

Now Monique has a bad case of eczema,
and applied the weird paste to the patches,
the two were not big on guinea pigs,
so she used up the first three batches.

She immediately felt a tingle,
her skin, she said, started to crawl,
Francois kept an eye on how much she applied,
and was concerned that she had used it all.

Up in their marital chamber
the two settled into their bed,
and all through the night, his sleep he did fight,
as nightmares invaded his head.

Sitting up with a start Francois shouted
cold sweats had soaked through his shirt,
a hand rested assured on his shoulder,
another bad dream to avert.

He reached up to acknowledge her comfort
by patting her hand with his own,
It's then he had noticed her arm was gone,
he let out a terrible groan.

In terror he reached for the light switch,
and his fear and his screams made him gag,
Monique's side of the bed saturated with blood
and parts of Monique feeding maggots.

Francois the mad scientist was quite distraught,
and now he was quite bereft of her,
his friend, his love, and his right hand,
and now that's all that is left of her.

(258 words)

The archaic lettering called to me.
It haunted me. Every afternoon,
I passed by "Madame Toltasz's Moroccan Palace".
This hovel bore all the gaudiness
of a porcelain Rama with a digital clock
in its belly. This place exuded mystery.

She was standing near the window,
hidden beside the placard of the "all-seeing eye".
Toltasz was a gypsy, a seer.
To some, she was a real witch.
Her eyes moved along with me,
making me feel as if she were directing my steps.

"She's going to make me late again", I said
as I stopped dead in my tracks and turned
for the door of the shop. "Velcomen" she greeted
in her thick Hungarian accent, "Tarot today?"
Hands nestled in my pockets,
I nodded towards her corner table.

Her crystal ball adorned
the center of the table scarf.
Tapestries and abundant strings of garlic
gave her bizarre little bazaar its appeal.
And its aroma.
At least I though it was the garlic.

With a grand sweeping hand gesture,
Madame Toltasz pointed at the empty seat before her.
I sat in drawn anticipation as she shuffled her deck.
She drew each card from the pile, and as she did,
she made a little noise. Each squeak, or Oooh, or Aha!
was laced with her dialect.

As she lay the pattern upon the tabletop, I felt optimistic.
She laid my last tarot card on the table. I smiled.
It looked like a pretty good one.
But when I glanced up to meet her cloudy blue eye, she frowned.
"Shit, this is bad," she said in her best Brooklynese,
her accent now completely gone. "Very friggin' bad."

I saw the panic in her eyes as she raised
from the table in abject fear. The last thing
I remembered was glancing over my left shoulder
just as the Metro Bus came careening
through the plate glass store front.
I guess it just wasn't in the cards.

(313 words)

Erratic rhythm
inside the turbulent chest,
strains of the cardiac kind.
Racing and tracing,
circulating; veins and
capillaries coursing
forcing rivulets of
blood through plaque
encrusted pathways,
aneurysm soon to end
it's circuitous path,
fluttering to finality,

(32 words)

Cardboard carton
of moo elixir
new vacancy for breakfast
"Where is everybody?"
Oh, not another one

(13 words)
I hate when that happens. Say goodnight Gracie!
(7 words)
RJ, They've been toasted. Now, we refer to them as "Post Toasties"!
(11 words)

Shimmers in her hair, the moon does,
and offers her silent steps to a
lunar driven tide. A nocturnal newness
awash in memories of old and
anticipation of every new heart
that touches his soul through
the walls he's erected, behind which
he will incarcerate their past.
No good comes from hanging the
present out to dry, all the while
holding the past like a lifeline.
In the solitary moment in which he
returns to say his sad goodbyes,
he know this will be the last time,
the last languid memory, the last waltz
in the paleness of night. The song ends.
He soon will follow.

(94 words)

Drawn out into a soulful sigh,
a gasp of breath in between
puckers and pecks,
the taste savory and sweet
when lip to lip, the last you touched.
It stays on your mind,
arousing every sense;
making none in the process.
Soft and moist, parted
into a slight invitation,
a wanting; a longing to stay with you
after the lamps are extinguished.
On the coldest of nights,
the one thing that will keep
your heart warm and your
soul warmer still. The lasting kiss,
released, but never given up on.

(76 words)

She was skin and bones, frail
as all skeletal remains become,
with every last breath of life
still sticking to her ribs. Every
exhale came with the burdened
anticipation of the next deep gasp.
Her eyes, a vacuous stare, looking
through me and seeing nothing but
a chance to finally go home to her rest.
Well past the need for words; or the
ability to express the same. Her face
contorted with each painful smile,
pleads in silence for one last embrace.
Wrapping my arms under her absence,
closing around her distance; squeezing
through my need to feel something,
only to fail miserably. A flame, extinguished
well before the light in her eyes had dimmed.
And I stood in her darkness, clinging
to the shadow of her and any lasting
memory that she had left me.
The last time that I held her
was my last goodbye.

(129 words)

In the close confines
of a corner booth,
two in an effort
to recapture the magic
once given up for dead.
Thoughts in their heads
of how it was;
how it could be again.
A smile, a laugh,
a touch of a hand
once holding the coldness
of a frozen porterhouse,
now well thawed and offering.
A gentle kiss upon
the first knuckle lingering,
as eyes connect in a newly
found spark of passion.
The bartender bellows last call,
but no one has remained to hear.
Gone to continue their rediscovery
in a new light. The evening is
just getting started, full circle
they are rejoined.

(98 words)
Thanks Karen. Anyone who remembers from last year knows I lost the love of my life during the PAD challenge. A year ago today was the last time I held her; the incident today's poem was about. It was great timing for a great prompt.

Loving all the work I've been reading. Nice work gals and guys.

(56 words)
Willy and Theresa, you don't know how much your thoughts mean to me. I have struggled these first eleven days because my mind keeps going back to then, and I feel heavily burdened by the perspective time has presented. There is a guilt that hangs over me for pushing forward through the challenge and not grieving Janet's passing directly. I mean she encouraged my writing and wanted me to pursue the challenge, but I think it and the subsequent Wednesday prompts kept me from my dealing with my loss. Today may be one of the more prescient days since last April 18. It brings a new focus to it. I hope I can continue with the prompts with a bit more passion than I've brought to the table so far. But knowing my friends have my back helps a great deal.

(140 words)

An American Beauty,
perfect, yet thorn ridden,
hidden from my heart for years
only to re-appear at our perfect time.
She was dying of Cancer, and I died a little
everyday with her knowing another reunion would
be brief and intense, but end terribly...again.
Summer came, fall and winter followed, but my thoughts
return to thoughts of love for my beautiful red rose.

(59 words)
Don, Thank you, the prayers are appreciated.

Pearl, you always find ways to lift my spirit with your flair and common sense. I'm glad the "Doctor" is in. Thank you.

Randi, Doesn't get much better than Jersey Hugs to keep a guy grounded and focused. Thanks for the e-embrace.

Pamela (PSC) as with Pearl, your reach across the East Coast to my Buffalo heart is calming and something for which I am grateful as well.

Kim, Thank you for your thoughts. It's this community that has kept me from drifting into oblivion. All these "lifelines" from which to choose!

And you, Across the Lake, have been a constant and a Godsend. Everything for a reason? My finding a way to get your attention on Day Three last year was Providence in the very least. Your understanding and compassion are my most valued assets for well over a year now. I know the words are not needed. But, Thank You seems inadequate. I'll just say, "Here's Looking at You, Kid - from Across the Lake, Eerily"

Robert, thanks for allowing this "therapy session" to work its magic daily since last April. The "Community" has been both astounding AND outstanding.

(191 words)

Here, at the crossroads,
on poetic overload,
my muse is confused
and fused with my music
on occasion, it's amazing
how a lyric can stick in your head
instead of flowing off your lips,
it slips and trips,
does backflips; beeps and blips
into an oblivion I can't fathom,
(or choose to) I refuse to
dream of a scheme where
my seams bust and I can no longer trust
the absurd words, phrases heard
time and again, when all I need
for placation is a separation
of the song from all the wrong ideas
I can come upon, keeping my melodies
word free until I see the "me"
in the prose I propose, poetic rants
with half a chance to be view,
chewed up and spit out in away that says,
I will serve no rhyme before its time.
And as the last poet leaves the stage,
sage and uncaged, his words hang unheard.

(133 words)
It wouldn't be PAD if we didn't get at least one day MIA!

(12 words)

"I once met a girl from Buffalo.
Why I can't meet anyone from normal parents, is beyond me!"
~ Groucho Marx

In Buffalo.
Wow, did he miss the ferry!
A state of mind in a State of Confusion.
I was born here, raised here,
if I'm not careful
I'll continue to live here.
But in Buffalo, "live" is a relative term.
But as Marv Levy would ask,
"Where else would you rather be,
than right here, right now?"
I can't answer that quickly, but
there has to be an answer to that.
Even if it takes all day!

(85 words)

Steel City of the Lakes.
Speed bump on the I-90,
home of the Steelers,
and Father Nelson Baker;
Ron Jaworski of the NFL,
Writer/Director Anthony Yerkowich,
comedian Dick Shawn,
and Playwright/actor
Reuben Santiago-Hudson,
the Infamous Lackawanna Six,
and me, Walt and Irene's baby boy.

(33 words)
But it has to be Crystal Beach Loganberry, or it's just fruit drink, Amy!
(13 words)

It's no Paris, I'll tell you that.
Buffalo was sitting fat,
laying claim to having, they say,
the very first electric street lights in the U.S.A.
This is a proven fact, although deceiving
that even I have a hard time believing
any bright idea could have found its way
out of Buffalo to light the way.
(53 words)

Buffalo, Buffalo, it's a shame,
short-sightedness be thy name,
half-assed attempts have kept you down,
from being one hot, toddling town.

September 6, 1901
a crazy anarchist with a gun,
had President William McKinley in sight
ostensibly turning out his lights

Along came nineteen twenty seven,
and the populace was in heaven with a bridge
linking Buffalo to Canada, built in Peace,
the iron hulk a monstrous beast.

Needing a new upgrade, the bridge is in debate,
and has been since nineteen forty-eight,
Union leaders and politicians wrangle without guilt,
in the meantime, be quite sure the new bridge won't be built.

In 'twenty-eight, a new train terminal was completed,
just what the New York Central Railroad needed,
an Art Deco beauty was doing fine,
until the market crash of 'twenty-nine.

Abandoned for years and in decay,
the structure stands until this day,
groups involved to held rebuild it,
while the powers that be would rather kill it.

February 9, 1964,
across the ocean came "The Four",
a new invasion had been started
with music taken to the heart.

The Beatles played on the CBS stage,
and their music was the biggest rage,
a venue for their first concert after Ed,
offered first to Buffalo, but the bigwigs answered

"We don't know. This new band is a real blast,
but we don't think they're gonna last.
We'll wait and see how they pan out,
'til then, there'll be no Twist and Shout.

Through the years more chances laid
at the feet of this sad charade.
Halls of Fame for Comedy and Rock and Roll
with more denials out of control.

Take, "Wide-Right!" and "No Goal"
and losses in four Super Bowls,
The City of Dreams now broken
disparaged and never spoken.

Surely in need for something good,
I'd like to see it, I really would.
But we'll be left with this retort:
Buffalo - A Day Late, and A Dollar Short!

(276 words)
Darn it Collette, and I just quit my position at the Chamber of Commerce! Shoulda, Woulda, Cou...wait, I did that one already.

(21 words)
OK RJ, so if I say Flyers over the Devils in seven, I'll have your attention?

That's it. I should have written about Byron when the prompt was about tools! Not really sold on Mayor Brown, Amy. But I keep an open mind.

(41 words)

Liverpool, Ginsberg called you
"the centre of the consciousness
of the human universe".
You gave rise to the musical
poetry of the Beatles.
That Sixties scene influence,
heavily guided by the Beat Poets
of the Nineteen Fifties.
Your expression was direct;
your language simple.
Contemporary and alive.
Bathed in humor, ranged
in emotion and dripping with
experience of the
human condition.
Henri, McGough and Patten,
you were "The Liverpool Scene"*.
Working class values painted your muse,
shunning University for Art College.
Your heart is ever tied to the Pop culture,
pubs and clubs were your element.
Mersey could not contain you.
It drove and defined you.
It was your pulse. It was your beat.
The Mersey Beat, in music and muse.
Beautiful in simplicity,
Honorable in it's accessibility.
Poets of the world.

* "The Liverpool Scene" was a 1967 book published by Donald Carroll
featuring Liverpool poets: Adrian Henri, Roger McGough and Brian Patten. The comment by Allen Ginsburg appears in the book.

(138 words)
Amy, yeah Marsden was good. I had an opportunity to go to Liverpool for a Beatles Festival when I worked with a local Beatles tribute band (Beatlemagic), but one of our "lads" took ill and we had to pull out of the competition. The fellow that performs as John is so spot on it is eerie. His "Imagine" is like a live recording of Lennon. I was mostly a McCartney fan (wasn't everyone?), but earned a new appreciation for John Lennon through my association there.
(84 words)

You float.
Astral and ethereal,
a wisp of a thought
tattooed on my soul
for my lifetime.
In the mist of a memory,
I hold your eternity.
Immortal you have become.

(29 words)

Can my heart have a rest?
Worn and time burdened,
lost in many broken shards
cutting me to the bone
a blood-letting with
the agony to go.
The guy who said
"Love Hurts", had something.
Who needs it?
Me, I guess.

(34 words)

Life in the balance.
The scales reflect
what the mind will not fathom.
Life in the balance.
Hate strays from balance.
Complete love is distant from balance.
Somewhere in between
it is achieved.
True love knows
there is balance in heartbreak.
There is no other way.

(42 words)
Anders, you are a cynic. But, therein lies the Bylund Balance. Good work my friend.

Ellenelizabeth, Salvatore, Beth, Rachel. Way to jump all over this one.
You are the balance to which we all aspire.

(32 words)

and every which way, but loose.
Where her and I ended,
you and I began.
And when we ended
she filled my heart again.
Fitting, I suppose
in her repose we had
returned to a beginning redux.
Know my memory is full.
Full of her and full of you.
The then and now of
my past and present.
Love never runs out,
even anti-love is love
if you view it with
a skewed, but tender eye.
And in returning to
that place where love was planted,
I have re-discovered
the friend that rescued me
from the buzz saw of love absent.
A love mulligan, a fresh start,
two hearts who continue to do
when they said they would.
The light of the past
illuminates our future.
Learning from our mistakes,
Back to the Future.

(110 words)

A father laying in wait,
half his mind gone from his latest fall.
The hemorrhage has halted
and memory has vacated his stare.
"WHO THE HELL ARE YOU?" he shouts,
an accusing finger choosing you
to absorb his tirade. The pain
burrows deeply, but you remain
the loving daughter that
understands. Your sisters have long
departed, hurt feelings and ego
their motivation. His greyness
defines his waning health, his eyes
are sunken and going down for the third time.
You search the window for a sign of life,
a blade of grass in a wind-blown dance,
a bird/worm tug of war, a wisp of sun
through the clouds that surround you.
And you look my way, and your smile
provides the light you seek. Warmth
returns to your heart and you give
your father his answer. "Dad, it's
Janice. Your daughter." His gaze strains
for recognition. "Oh. AND WHO THE HELL ARE YOU?"
I have become my father-in-law's target.
"Uh, I'm with her" I explain. A remnant
of a smile creases his lips. "Yeah, me too".

(155 words)

This dance,
choreographed and plotted,
twist and turns, flurry and dip.
And you. The partner joined in this
waltz, arms length away, with sighs
and long drawn breaths feeding your
energetic romp. Step and stomp,
glide and slide. And me.
Your two left-footed Lothario.
Feigning my fleetness of foot,
finding fellowship in our flight.
Grace and beauty abound, a new found
promenade to the tune love chooses.
It will leave us breathless and
wanting. But, such is love.

(67 words)
What is this? Everybody got hitched in April? 27th in '85. Would be 25 if we didn't get the hiccups for a few years. Health, losses and other concerns have us trying to make up for lost time, if it's possible. Worth the effort, I'm sure. Congrats to Marie, Amy and all who qualify. The rest of you wait your turns.

(60 words)
That's funny. I wonder how many poets are writing love/anti-love poetry over at ReadWritePoetry today? Somehow, the cross over tastes like czarnina, and you know how much I hate Chocolate Soup! But, that's just me.

(34 words)
Forgive me Robert, but I'm posting my "parody" of "Mornings with T".


I wake to the sound of the shower running
and the gurgle of Mr. Coffee through the half opened door.

All but Andrea wears glasses, and still the only way I tell time
is by the "Can-Can" ringtone from Janice's phone for the fifth time!

In the first bedroom, Melissa's alarm wreaks it's electronic wail.
Who cares if there's a dog barking in Duluth, Georgia?

(75 words)

The spring breeze rustles
the tender sapling branches,
moving uneasily, touching the
souls of angels and arousing
their voices. I hear it,
the hushed sighs in the openness;
a choir of cacophonous cherubim
in heavenly song for their loved ones
left behind to suffer this life;
whispers for the promise of that New Day.
An offering from the Purest Love,
meant to bless our existence.
(56 words)

...and if I look at you from across the room and you smile,
will I know that I had touched something deeply without moving my feet?
Does that one glance illicit the old fire; the slumbering ember
that has crackled since the first day we would meet?

...and if I see something in your eyes that flashes a semaphore;
signals deciphered in the darkness that your gaze outshines,
would my heart steer clear of the jagged rocks that had clouded our past
and find safe harbor in your heart as you had in mine?

...and if these lips would dip down to sip the refreshing nectar
that your passion has rekindled and your heart has shared,
would our journey find a restful companionship in each other
and seal the fate that brings the knowledge that we still cared?

...and if I sing to you, the songs my soul has written,
and offer them up to the heavens for the angels to sing along,
would your step lighten and your dance be liberated,
and would they tell you where my belongs?

...and if I hold you in my arms, will that embrace
erase all the turbulence that had shadowed our doubts and fears
and bring us closer than ever to indulge the lives we have remaining,
putting heartfelt meaning in the expression of our tears?

...and if I whisper "I love you" in the midnight darkness,
would you respond in kind, knowing that was all I needed to stay,
and give you every bit of me you would need to be completed
because you wouldn't want it any other way?

...and if I did all that, would you understand?

(256 words)

Independent streak aside,
nowhere to hide on an island of one.
Like the two men in the elevator,
both know from whence the flatulence comes.
Floating in a sea of trouble,
it would be double if left
to handle adversity alone.
A helping hand can make work lighter,
and keep a disposition brighter,
No man is an island.
But a peninsula...?

(54 words)

The land of opportunity.
Many came to live in freedom
and prosperity. The immigrant
flow came through the turnstiles
at Ellis. Communications nightmare;
names changed, destinations altered,
illness quarantined and detained and deported.
Mission aborted in a time of change.
The face of a nation took a new flavor,
in favor of those precepts and their allure.
To be sure, adventure awaits long after departing
the land of your birth for the land of your choice.
But will you be chosen? The line moves slowly.
You stand in silent fear and anticipation.
The rebirth of the nation in the shadow of Liberty,
by way of Ellis Island station.

(93 words)

Shipwrecked in this remote place,
with this garish smile across my face,
for as far as my eye can feign perception,
I'm surrounded by these mass confections.

My sweet tooth does a happy dance,
as I'm stuffing pastries in my pants,
sticky buns and big bear claws
are dripping frosting on my paws

...er, hands. Chocolate bars and Nonpareils,
cream puffs, eclairs and stuff that sells,
cookies, cakes, candies and pies
for your sugar Jones and eyes,

cobblers, custards, gelatins, mousse,
puddings, meringues and tiramasu,
ice cream, compote; Sorbet will go far,
as will Italian Ices, and Baklava.

So, you should always leave here smilin',
glad you landed on this island,
just hope your dinghy stays afloat,
you've become your own island, so I wouldn't gloat.

(107 words)
...and unusually queer, Hermey? I WAS Hermey in a past life. You're not suggesting... Didn't think so. Good work RJ.

Prompt code: SEEH7. In a mirror it is 7HEES, as in:


(35 words)

In the region of Pancreas,
inhabited by a cell of Endocrines,
A mostly hormone-producing culture.
Discovered in 1869 by Paul Langerhans
There are about one million islets
in the Pancreatic regions, distributed throughout.

Hormones produced in the Island of Langerhans go
directly into the Blood River flow.
Various cells of the Endocrines are hard at work.
Alpha cells produce glucagon where they lurk
and Beta cells bring the insulin.
The Delta cells state that somatostatin is their pride,
while PP cells do Pancreatic Polypeptide.

Island inhabitants can influence each other's station
through Paracrine and Autocrine communication,
and Beta cells share electricity with other beta cells.
Their culture functions peacefully, but the threat is, well,
always there for an attack by Type 1 Diabetes.
Transplanted Islands of Langerhans can beat these instance
according to Langerhans, the German pathological anatomist insistence.

(129 words)

No matter how life leaves me stranded,
presenting a fate so star-crossed,
the challenge of living as demanded,
at times leaves me surrounded and lost,
I'll pull up my boot straps one-handed,
and show them exactly who's boss,
take it as long as I can stand it,
as head over heels, I'm tossed.
For even if it's in defeat,
always, I'll land on my feet.

(59 words)

A warm embrace,
a group hug,
upon your return.

Warm in the hearth
of heart and home,
upon your return.

Warm as a summer breeze on Lake Erie,
Floating in familiarity,
upon your return.

A tingle, heart warming and true,
flush with the passion of love,
upon your return.

A newly discovered self-made island,
totally surrounded on all sides, with love
upon your return.

(55 words)

It's a mad disturbia,
here in new suburbia,
Nassau county's all around
this nestled little Levittown.

For this land tract, you're the "brand" name,
in the land development game,
from forty-seven to fifty-one,
is when this grand plan had been done.

Up near Hempstead you reside,
with proud Lawng Eyelundas there inside,
planned community, prototype for all,
the Grandfather of suburban sprawl.

Mass-production was your claim,
taking William Levitt's name,
post-war planning, World War Two,
the master of the building boom.

(68 words)
Amy, count Walt in as interested in your WNY proposal. Could be a good time. Although the fear of not being accepted in your hometown has got the butterfly vultures churning my gut.
(32 words)
Barbara, I'm taking reservations, but we're booking quickly.

(7 words)
As far as Amy and I are concerned, I'm a terrible insomniac (no, actually, I'm very good at it, unfortunately) and Amy was drinking coffee all day. And Buffalo coffee will take the paint off of your stomach. So between the two of us, we have a load of time to muse poetic.

(52 words)

Keep your eyes open,
your eyes can deceive,
sometimes eyes will not see
what you truly believe.

Things appear backward,
out of their turn,
not quite the way
you mind has learned.

There are these mirages
to toy with your head,
since thing look quite different
than the way that they're said.

Things out of place,
or totally missing,
confusing for sure,
it's the language you're dyssing.

And writing the words
is less than perfection
when the consonants are facing
in different directions.

A drift on this island
where things are disheveled,
if it were up to me,
this whole place would be leveled.

Life is much harder when looking askew,
on Aixelsyd Island just what would YOU do?

(94 words)

And after the great conflagration,
peace reigned: for a day, and a week,
and a month, and a year.
He and his "henchmen" brought to bear
the wonders of that island there.
Words expressed in rational tones,
amidst the broken legs and tailbones,
Standing abreast of the carnage there
was Commander Anders in recalcitrant stare.
"What we have here is a chance to just chill,
since there's nothing to do, and no one to kill."
On Bylund Island everything's still,
the hard won serenity of mind over will.

(76 words)

The prompt is posted
and I've just found it.
There are times I'm
confounded by it.
And since I've got
a lot to do,
I better rhyme
with out ado,
Time's a wastin'
And I'm writing,
before I start
my nail biting.
Please excuse me
gotta run,
poem finished
now I'm done.

(41 words)

Setting a goal to coalesce
with the condescension of my heaviness,
a bit of a paunch has brought to bear,
a self-imposed weight loss deadline there.
I need to firm up my "ab" region,
to prepare me for the summer season,
But, odds are slim that I'll look great,
too much pressure making weight.
(47 words)
Beth, I almost titled my second, "Waist not, Want not"! Nice start.

(11 words)

Days, numbered and languishing,
lumbering to their natural conclusion.
There is no illusion that placates
a soul weary from the delusions
that we mortal beings have control
over the length of our lives.
So, time is passed and we've amassed
a resume worth noting, and all awards
and after-thoughts have left us sadly gloating.
For in the end the facts my friends
are a testament to reality. When our time comes
the total sum of our lives reaches finality.
Because, when our lives go by before us
with all the things we did,
the final dead line reads like this:
"Survived by wife and kids."

(91 words)
Yes, but you didn't miss the boat there, Grand-nephew!

(8 words)
Linda, when I'm not posting the first poem, I'm doing what everyone is doing. Sleeping in.
(15 words)
Just kidding Linda. Actually, I'm a narcoleptic, insomniac with obstructive sleep apnea, so I never sleep. Thanks for the props on the posts.

(22 words)

Always running,
but getting nowhere fast,
the last great poet in my mind
trying to find time to think,
let alone meet some timetable
that will enable me to breathe
a bit easier, for no apparent purpose.
And what's worse, despite this rhyme and meter,
my timing sucks like a Hoover.
More of a shaker than a mover
and behind in these undertakings.
"He had the makings of a fine poet
with his wit and expressions
which lent a dimension to his work."
But, going berserk to be on time
will end up putting me in my grave,
save for a wedding and the birth
of two daughters, every one ought to know
that even at my funeral, I'll be referred to
as the Late Walt Wojtanik. Timing is everything.

(117 words)
Linda, I snore loud enough to wake the dead, and those little breaks in breathing do wonders for my sleep (or lack of) patterns to mess up my commute to work. (Although red lights make for great catnaps as long as the guy behind me has a loud horn). LOL, JK.
(50 words)

Days of future, past come to the fore,
leaving us at heaven's door,
Volcanos, earthquakes, twunamis and more,
wreak havoc on each coast and shore.

Violent earth changes bring concerns,
though all the science we have learned,
goes up in smoke, our theories burn
and we're kept trying to discern

the course our fate has handed down,
through air, and sea, and underground,
destroying cities, bergs and towns,
until there is not much around.

Visions of an ancient's eyes,
come years later as no surprise,
predictions of the world's demise
with cautions taken by the wise.

The "Ring of Fire" has erupted,
and Teutonic plates have been corrupted,
with lives and property left disrupted,
and natures cycles interrupted.

But the future's not in our command,
and few people really understand,
deadlines fall like shifting sands
it's up to us to take a stand.

(120 words)

It's with sadness that we say
a legend has truly passed away.
Recognized by young and old,
this icon's candle has gone cold.
Age had finally taken its toll
to claim this good and loyal soul,
though its condition was protected
its passing was not unexpected.
A service will be held tomorrow
for the public to display its sorrow.
The body will be whisked away
and will be buried in two days.
Its roar is silenced, it calls no more
but it truly was a noble roar.
His memory will go on and on,
but another dead lion's come and gone.

(90 words)
ME, no dead talk, just dead lines. Not heading anywhere yet that the Big Guy doesn't want me to go. Just looking at the prompt from "down there" (different perspective). I'm not looking to re-write what's already been written. And did you say you "disliked" one of my poems? A FIRST, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! See, we're not marching in lock step!

Barbara E - Thank you, but the truth is, the words find me most of the time. You're bringing a fine mix of verbiage to the table yourself!

Iain chimes in loud and clear. Good take, Brother Kemp!

Collette, Maggie, Cousin Tim, el Mosk, Bruce (always a good Niedt), Clay, Sharon all posting excellence for the length of the challenge so far.

Patricia (Wordhawk), Nikki, Darlin' De, and Hannah (Where's Hannah?):
your consistencies are always a warming to my heart. Reliable and well done.

Amy, Well wishes! Thanks for your gift. Expressive and skewed at times (it must be the WNY water)which I'm loving none the less.

Pearl, always sweet, you are. Thanks for the support and insight. Your work rises like cream: always rich and flavorful, and welcomed as well.

Beth, Chev, Karen: all of your works reach out and grab me.

(196 words)
And you call me Morbid!
(4 words)
No beating, Beth. Apparently wrote my "death" poems yesterday, so I'm going easily early. But have at it folks!
(18 words)

Life ended.
And you were interred.
It was inferred that my struggle
was just beginning. There was no winning
in this scenario. There was just you
and the living; no losers in this game.
But, all the same, tomorrow came.
And the day after that. Each succession,
bringing a sunshine, and things to do;
poems to write, and a survival
one day at a time. Don't get me wrong,
you were on my mind, but my life
still continued after yours had ended.
Your inspiration still fills me,
and your battle strengthened me.
You gave me life when life released you.
Everyday is a new day; a new life.
After death, there is nothing else.
A New Life.

(101 words)

Without invitation,
quite unannounced,
not primped and prodded,
not fleeced or flounced.

Not looking morbid,
so unassuming
you are unaware
of the fate that is looming.

But you invite him in,
and offer a seat,
he'll sit and make small talk,
he'll put up his feet.

You'll give him some coffee,
and he'll sip for a while;
show him pics of the grandkids,
he'll nod and he'll smile.

Then he'll watch some T.V.,
put on something inane,
there's just something about him,
you're wracking your brain.

He'll ask how you're feeling,
as if he didn't know,
when it's time to be leaving,
he'll ask you to go.

And you'll feel quite uneasy,
there's a twinge in your chest,
you decline his fine invite,
but it was no request.

He came for a visit,
he stayed a bit more,
now you fuss and you fidget
and collapse on the floor.

Then you rise just to comment,
you've not felt this good,
the pain in your chest
is all gone, knock on wood.

You reach for your coat
because it looks like it's snowing,
but he says you won't need it
in the place that you're going.

"There's no time for a note,
we're running behind.
No, you can't say goodbye,
are you out of your mind?"

"Let's go Mr. Johnson,
our transport is here."
And you say, "Mr. Johnson?
he moved out of here last year!!"

Now Death is embarrassed,
he begs you, don't mind him,
"And about Mr. Johnson, uh...
know where I can find him?"

(212 words)

Yum, Death By Chocolate
is my favorite cake,
my stomach just aches for a sliver,

It looks damn near perfect,
and smells heavenly,
I'd sell out my soul (or my liver).

My mouth starts to water,
and I know that I ought to
not have that cake in my belly,

it's just one little bite,
I'll work out half the night,
I swear, so stop acting so smelly.

Pretty please, I am pleading,
you know that I'm needing
a bite of that cocoa confection,

I'll attend some more meetings
my cravings are seething,
I must have that chocolate perfection.

There's no point to this cake,
did I say, no points for this cake?!
I think I'm beginning to deny it!

I'm dying to try it,
but I'm trying to diet,
so I'll just walk away, and not buy it.

(124 words)

Adventures don't come cheaply,
you pay for them through the nose,
you'd have to have a lot of cash
and an extra change of clothes.
And, if you are looking to just get away,
and not worry when you'll be found,
with just a shovel and five dollars a day
we can put your away underground.

Reserve your space now!
Headstone engraving is extra!

(59 words)

It is an art, it sets one apart,
from finish to start, these well worded "darts",

fly with humor and wit, and a smidgen of snit,
towards the small minded twits who don't understand it.

Have you heard of sarcasm? Not a smarmy brain spasm,
that fills the wide chasm between synapses like plasma?

For there are times that I need what just you can provide,
and that's your absence, so trust me, just go someplace and hide.

And although I'd feel almost too horrid without you,
it'd be just like having you here, this is true.

I've never seen someone love nature like you,
in spite of the things it has done to you.

You've an eye for art, when you chose to use it,
and unfortunately Van Gogh's ear for music.

For when I look at you, I'm reminded of loneliness,
and with you by my side I'm content in my onlyness.

You seem to be lost in thought and it stinks,
maybe I'll draw you a map, don't you think?

Could I BE anymore sarcastic?

(162 words)

Thinking of this science prompt
has caused my brain to bleed,
my mind has gone to hibernate,
my grass has gone to seed.

I haven't got an inkling,
my head has started hurtin',
if I was in a better frame
I'd have it pegged for certain.

The heat I'm generating
is messing up my diction,
by rubbing lobes together,
I could do with much less friction.

It's not for lack of stimulus,
my petri dish is full,
my agar is in culture shock
its responses are quite dull.

I have a pot of coffee
brewing in a beaker,
at least I think it's coffee,
it just melted half my sneaker.

The test tubes in the centrifuge
contain some kind of a paste,
it looked a lot like sour cream,
and a shame to let it waste.

My Bunson burner's cooking dogs,
they really cut the mustard,
The sour cream is yellow now
and tastes a lot like custard.

And there inside my microscope
I see some wiggly things,
they look like flying amoeba,
single celled with wings.

My head has lapsed to migraine stage,
the lights are bright; I'm cautious.
My stomach has a nasty ache,
I'm really getting nauseous.

I'm ending my experiments,
it's lab tech dereliction,
I'm taking pause from illness caused,
by a case of science friction.

(182 words)

I'm sort of feeling guilty,
there's plenty here to do,
but, my girls are at the hockey game,
my wife is somewhere too.

And me I'm in my La-Z-Boy,
writing science poems,
Bob Ross painting on TV
I'm all alone a home.

Dishes in the kitchen sink,
I'll get to them eventually,
I'll pre-wash every pot and pan,
and fork and spoon sequentially.

I thank God for that catnap,
ten minutes was a steal,
it felt so strange to fall asleep
without being behind the wheel.

The sky is dark and overcast,
the rains, they come and go,
I really can't complain a lot,
it could be worse...and snow.

I'm shaken from these doldrums
the phone is my alarm,
I have get out of this chair,
it is so soft and warm.

My family will be pulling in,
my guilt is so demanding,
I kick my ass into high gear,
or I'll be dead here where I'm standing.

That inner little moral voice,
has hid its face in shame,
too bad it reared it's ugly head,
it's getting all the blame.

(154 words)

I rush to lab, to see her,
she has the finest mind,
and open to experiment,
two qualities hard to find.

She's peering through her microscope,
developing some culture,
I approach her like I'm stalking prey,
a lasciviously vile vulture.

She's in her clean starched lab coat,
I'm so nervous and I'm coughin'
"Hellllllooo there Madame Curie!
Do you come to this lab often?"

(53 words)

A little numerology:
thoughts Pythagorean,
a numerical divination.

Zero. Everything or absoluteness.
All inclusive, quite elusive.
Devoid and annoyed resoluteness.

One. A solitary individual.
Bold aggressor. Sole possessor.
Empty and insubstantial. Yang.

Two. The scale of balance.
Communicative union. Receptive and offering.
Full and substantial. Yin.

Three. A meeting of minds; an attraction
of communicative interaction.
Triangular in neutrality. A crowd.

Four. A creation in striation.
Drawn and quartered, bricked and mortared
Inflection of direction.

Five. Quintessential action.
Restlessness protraction.
Pent up emotion and then gone.

Six. Adverse reaction; an axiom of flux.
Responsible infusion. Juxtaposition.
Sextupular indecision.

Seven. Realm of Thought.
assured self-consciousness.
A lucky prime.

Eight. The insinuation of power,
the ultimate sacrifice.
An octagonal; a geometric shape.

Nine. The highest level of change.
Mudville mates.
Mythological Muses.

Ten. A return to origin.
The worth of rebirth.
the decadent ultimate redux.

(114 words)
Anders, add my voice to the chorus. A good bit of functional application for the poetic masses. Very cool. There may be another poem in it for you.

Prompt code for this: 5FANS

My assumption is you have a lot more than that right now. Good job!

(44 words)

Edgar Cayce knew it,
he saw it in his sleep.
Nostradamus knew it too.
through his basin wide and deep.
Mayans with their calendars,
point to date and time,
and Jeanne Dixon warned the Kennedy's,
they thought her out of mind.
Sylvia Browne's a seer too,
lost in psychic session,
Gordon-Michael Scallion's changing earth
is currently in question.
St. John the Evangelist,
had his Revelation,
St. Malachy was the guy
with Papal Divination.
Their claim to futures sight unseen,
has been their stock and trade,
but give me six number in the lotto
and my future will be made.

(81 words)
Where goeth Elena?

Wtr Josph Wojtnik
(4 words)

Put up your dukes,
I came here to fight,
a fifteen round bout,
I'll be out there all night.
I've trained for four months,
my arms are so tired
from all of the upper cuts
and jabs I have fired.
Theses cauliflower ears;
this head vegetation,
does keep me from hearing
your standing ovation.
In the red corner,
I'm here with my trainer,
and in just three more rounds
I'll eat food through a strainer.
My eyes are so swollen
but my cut man won't cut me,
and the moron I'm fighting,
just tries to head butt me.
I've got just four more fights
I can finally confess,
if I don't win one more purse
I'll be wearing a dress.

(100 words)
U? Yeah, I guess I AM! Ditto RJ.

Thanks RJ, for a minute there, I thought I may have been a genetically altered Walter.

Theresa, good to read you again. I just thought I'd tell you.

Sally - likewise, I'm sure!

ABLe - Very much so. You amaze me lady!

Beth, Collette, Karen, Janet, Linda G - Thanks for the props throughout. And thanks for sharing your muse with the rest of us. You each bring a wonderful bit of work to the table.

Speaking of Janet, it was a year ago today. She remains near.

The Barbaras Y and E, strong entries on all counts.

Ellenelizabeth, always an anticipated read.

Marie Good - You have been a bright light at the end of a VERY long tunnel. You have brought wonder and brilliance to my life and the warm fuzzies when you post your DElightful and HANNAHful MARIEness.
Like I've always said, I couldn't imagine a better friend if we ever would meet. Thank you for all ME does for me.

Joseph Harker, Patricia Hawkenson, Laurie Kolp - you all present a life affirming slant to all you do. It has been an honor and privilege to be read amongst your finery.

Nancy, Brian, Rachel, and Daniel(s) Ari and "Pai" keeping us all honest and driven. Thank you.

Khara and Kyhaara, two similarly wonderful names for two divergent and strong points of view.

Robert Lee, you do indeed rock, Brother! Thanks for allowing me into the playground.

To everyone else, to much greatness for such little space and time. I appreciate you all (y'all).

(249 words)
Gosh, I am remiss. Add the Kimikos to the lengthy list. Well done.
(12 words)
...and Sheila, and Willy, and Demsy, and MSchied, and Mr. Wright, And Maggie, and mj...

Stand outs all.
(16 words)

I think, therefore
I tend to think some more.
The more I think the more
I am to think about.
It's a vicious Mobius strip.
The surface that shows hides
within itself only to be.
I am therefore, I am.
I am what I am.

(40 words)
Yes, Amy. I am Hercules with a haircut. I have no more power. Not this early on a Sunday, anyway.

(19 words)

I have been without,
a year in silence from
the sound I had grown accustomed.
The symphony that words
always expressed in the
timber of your voice.
It still speaks to my dreams
clearly and lovingly.
I know you by the softness
of your melodic call,
a siren luring me
away from the obstacles I face
with a gentle hand upon
these shoulder that bore your
strength and courage. A cause
to go on in living tribute.
The poet of your soul
in expression to your heart
long slumbering. Rest well.

(77 words)

Not in Kansas anymore,
distant in the land
where technicolor
is a way of life,
no trouble or strife,
just a place rife with
little people and witches
the sound on nails on
a yellow brick road.
A furry companion,
full of bravery and
a yappy bark, in stark
reality to the fantasy
only the young at heart
could imagine. The path
leads where others follow,
and in the hollow of your heart,
you start to miss the
place you belong, full
of song and a view of the
rainbow no one else has fathomed.
Where the people and neither
cowardly, or brainless,
or heartless in reality,
but are caring, and sharing
and daring to risk everything
for what you need. It is a wonderful
land, an Emerald in the rough,
and it's tough to argue,
there's no place like home.

(115 words)

A share of good and bad,
with a touch ups and downs.
And in the passing of time,
the challenges that are offered
can make or break an existence.
Sorrows can drown, and
joys will be celebrated,
for that is how it is
meant to be. If God
wants us to be joyful,
then far be it from reason
to disappoint Him.
So raise your glass.
Drink. L'Chiam. It's the
gift we share.
To life.

(61 words)
Pearl, Thank you! The beauty in everything you wrote, has touched me in a big way. You've pulled me through a rough day, and it is greatly appreciated. It's what friends do.

Linda - I wish I could do the story justice. Even the small part that has been exposed, is only the tip of the iceberg. Thanks for "meeting" Janet.

(60 words)
Marie and Amy, thank you for your tributes. I am again touched beyond words.You've help to make a heavy heart less so. It is the gift was share, this life. Sorry if you may have been misled, Marie. I had mentioned the year in passing on the piece I wrote (THE LAST TIME I HELD HER)on day eleven. The last time I did hold her was last April 11th. A week later, she was gone. Yesterday marked THAT year.

(78 words)

The day reaches through the blinds
and plants a gentle slap across
an exposed cheek, moments before
the wail of alarm invades.

Snooze, no an option. Eyes closed
remain so, and deadlines or
a slightly fast time clock
fall to the wayside, offering

more opportunity - and less reason
to get out of bed. Feet find the coolness
of the pile rug an aberration,
despicable and demeaning; annoying.

Convinced today will be the "new" day
for which a vacant heart has longed,
a foot moves forward, joined by its mate.
This game of follow the leader propels

a ragged shell of a man back to respectability,
one step at a time, not by leaps and bounds,
but a forward direction in which to put
the mistakes of the past behind, and give memories perspective.

(120 words)

Slumber becomes less evasive,
and rest finds a tired soul.
The ability to relax and find
moments of contentment is now
a quest paying dividends.
Late night traipses through
a darkened heart seem to diminish
as your demon insomnia gives up
the ghost and refuses to host
the marathon session of wakefulness
that eventually sapped the energy
from the power grid of life.
Dreams return; nightly mystic visions
of an empty heart return to fill
the nooks and crannies of a cavernous
cranium. They hang like stalactites
and stalagmites; nearly connected
synapses finding solitude in
rapid eye movement, resuscitating your
imaginative inclinations back to life.

(90 words)
Thanks Patricia. I try.

Day 19 has arrived!
(6 words)

The epitome of class,
a person swept with the grace to know
and the presence to attach herself
to a life with support and caring,
sharing the moments at a distance,
across the lake and for the sake of all involved;
the best friend I've never met. You bet!
(42 words)

Liverpudlian of great repute
as fact that few could well dispute,
a presence on the worldly stage,
wise, expressive, compassionate sage.
A lad who exponentially grew
with three potentially to be
innovators and creators of a sound
that haunts and lingers; blister on
his fingers and scars for the attempts
to claw back into the consciousness
of karma. Imagine if house-husbandry
were enough for a while more.
One of the four; the voice of an age,
once the rage. Remembered in stance;
give peace a chance. AKA John Lennon.

(77 words)
(The Poetic Palindrome)

Her muse is mired in motherhood,
and in the biblical sense,
she writes her poems from her heart
and offers no pretense,
She's as perky as she's pious,
She's sweet and quite serene,
She's Hannah, coming and going,
lighting up the poetic scene.

(37 words)
Now, that's funny. Hannah in Stereo!

(5 words)
Ilio DiPaolo

A man among men,
a towering teddy bear
with a heart of gold
and the Midas touch
with children and Fagioli.

A professional wrestler in the golden age,
before the mass media theatrics,
and soap opera story lines,
Ilio played both sides of
his rope lined office.

But his renown and fame came after the ring,
as restaurateur was Ilio's acclaim,
a gentle giant with a table side manner
quick with the greeting and a lively banter
laced with his strong Abruzzian accent.

A fifth anniversary dinner at his "Ringside Lounge",
brought the "newlyweds" and their four year old Melissa,
To dine and be regaled by the wrestling memorabilia.
A daughter in awe of the Romanesque portrait
of this Adonis in grappling gear.

He emerged from the kitchen; to initiate his small talk
and devour my daughter's young face with his large meaty hands,
planting a kiss on the forehead of his "Little Sweetie".
She made the connection, as did he. His departure prompted her response.
"Daddy, that Mr. Apollo was a nice man!"

** Ilio DiPaolo was a local Buffalo Celebrity. He died in 1995 after being struck by a car during a torrential downpour. Ilio DiPaolo was indeed, a nice man.

(180 words)

There once was a girl named Melissa.
And everyone near her would kiss her.
On hand or on cheek,
maybe once, twice a week,
and when they weren't near her, they'd miss her.



A four-dimpled girl named Andrea Lea
had two on her cheeks and one on her knee.
When asked with suspicion
the others position,
she said, "That's the one you won't see!"

** Written about my two daughters, Melissa Lyn (one "n") and Andrea Lea (Lee, spelled Lea). They both asked at separate times in their lives why their middle names were spelled differently. When they got their answer from me, they responded with the identical line.

MY ANSWER: "Because I picked out the middle name."

THEIR RESPONSE: "Oh Great,that figures!"

(111 words)

Queen and saint,
pragmatic and charitable
dedicated to helping the poor,
established orphanges and hospitals,
and housed the homeless.
Always depicted wearing an apron,
hiding bread in her garment
to feed the poor.
Her unfaithful husband, King Denis,
confronted his Queen about her apron's contents.
the bread had miraculously turned to roses.

**The name chosen by my daughter Andrea as her confirmation name this evening.
(61 words)

Sitting at the piano keyboard,
the coexistence of ebony and ivory
a microcosm of life played out
in a dirge over which Beethoven
would have proudly cut his hair,
or in the least, borrow a comb.
Alone at home, hammering a melodic
memory only the dog could hear.
And drawing the same "Prit-tee"
girl who would hang on every note,
not impressed with this "Ludwig von who?",
but crazy about the curly locks
of the piano man. I smile and play
the tune that elicits your own smile.
They called me Schroeder,
and I played for you.

(83 words)

Standing on the cusp of a new adventure,
son of a cavalry commander in a country
steeped in tradition in a turbulent land
of ever-changing borders and politics.

Out of Igolomia the soul sprang, songs
of patriotism and struggle inside your head;
an opportunity in a law that prided itself
on offering every chance to make a life.

A life free: to encourage self-reliance,
personal responsibility, to build a family,
a home, a legacy which is that strong thread
that this tattered fabric relies upon for its beauty.

It became your duty; your determination,
to come to a nation so rife with mystery
for a young man whose name had been changed
through an unknowing smile by a disinterested bureaucrat.

Assume the position; stoic and proud, a tribute to
a military upbringing by a father that released his son
to make a better life in a new land. Handsome, the
strong dark Eastern European; the broken English American,

of Polish descent. Not displaced, not discarded.
Accepted to make a name in a land of many names and religious
beliefs. Jozef Kura. Your name means "chicken" in Polish.
You were anything but. You were strong, proud and driven.

You were my Grandfather.

(176 words)
Yep, heard that one before! But it still retains a freshness and a...oh, what's the word?...Love that never ages or gets tired. Keep walking Sister! Sounds like a Good path to be on.
(32 words)

Forward, forward, ever onward,
the march of a life time begins
where my last step ended.
Befriended by many on this journey
to a destination that is the land
of every opportunity and challenge.
Making a name and a reputation
that will serve the rest of this trek proudly,
as I loudly express the muse that
seeks a place, somewhere out there.

(54 words)
As I concede to the Lady from the Great State of Ohio

Prompt code for above: MM2KG
(17 words)

a recovery.
saved from an incineration
at the local dump.
mud clotted and tarnished;
plastic woodgrain end mangled.
but there was something there.
he saw it. he always saw it.
it would be different when
he was done molding it to
a new glory. it was only a toy.

a reconstruction.
a wire wheel found its soul;
an oiled rag found its shimmer.
mud, unplugged and liberated,
fated for better things.
a learning experience.
master and apprentice; hands-on.
it would be different when
they were done fighting for
its new glory. it was only a toy.

a manipulation.
hand-crafted and brought to a new light,
a fight for what was good and right.
a father and son searching for
a common foothold; standing abreast together.
one expressed in words; one spoke in woods
both with an eye to an uncertain future.
he looked to the father for the guidance to cope;
the elder looked through a smoky brown bottle to deal.
no glory, it was only a toy.

a presentation.
shiny; newly blued gun barrel, detailed and gleaming.
shiny; freshly carved gun stock, his father's vision,
a craftsman in artistry; an artist in craftsmanship.
mounted on a placard of equal polish and shine.
and it was all his. they worked it together,
each with a unique vision for a common cause,
amidst applause and a few more draws on the foamy malt,
they shared in its pristine newness; a bond - father and son.
fated in glory, it was only a toy.

a disintegration.
perspective breeds contempt, pubescent and independent,
the son and father, sharing a name and a craftsmanship,
and little else. offspring, impressionable and fragile, a lump of clay
eager to be molded. parent, increasingly cold and inebriate,
escapist artist with a hand at wood, but not clay.
the father becomes the hunter, the son the protector
of all they had shared. slowly being extracted from
his warm and living hands. the bond; the truth and reality.
the alcoholic without glory and a boy with a toy.

a destruction.
shiny; newly blued gun barrel, detailed and gleaming.
shiny; freshly carved gun stock, his father's vision,
a craftsman's artistry; two artist's craftsmanship.
mounted on a placard of equal polish and shine.
the solution to an argument; a physical affront to the abuse
of a mother caught in the cross hairs. a drunken stare
and a lashing out to cause as much pain; as much mutual
destruction. a common bond; a joint effort;
one time glory. it was only a toy.

a devastation.
a project bringing/tearing apart all that was attained
through camaraderie; for an ideal. a father, taking the barrel
between his calloused and smoke scented hands;
swinging for the fences, sending shards of white metal shrapnel
skittering; sending slivers of burnished mahogany into flight.
throwing the shattered remains at my feet. a declaration;
"you are my son. you walk in my steps unfaltering."
an upheaval. rebellion. a denial of all preached as gospel.
devoid of glory. it was only a toy.

a resentment.
long harboring animus for one so loved and revered.
bonded in a conservative ideal, from opposite sides
of a shared misery. a choice; a road less journeyed.
the son strays to find his way; his voice, his choice
to walk his path. the father grasping at what had always
passed from father to son, somehow undone in this rendition,
and his suspicion lies in the opposition they have assumed.
the old mule and the young pachyderm seeking an open mind,
lost glory. it was only a toy.

a revelation.
scars remain on a heart that had found peace and forgiveness
in the passing of one so loved and revered. the fear of
taking a contrary stand against the old guard long buried
along with whatever hatchet remained. the vision of shattered
dreams and ventures, made somewhat whole. in heart and soul,
father and son again achieve oneness. two men joined in name,
sharing similar styles, from diverse sides of the aisle.
the thoughts stir up a laugh and a smile, all in mutual forgiveness;
a new glory. it was only a toy.

(606 words)
Harker's "Motley Fool"; followed eerily by Anders Bylund. Karma?
(8 words)
Jean, I had been without a code for forty-five minutes before my last one went through. Seems to be an oppressive problem today more than ever. And of course, no code as I prepare to send this response.
(37 words)
Joseph, no reflection on Anders in any way, of besmirching your intent.
There's an Anders Bylund tied to a site called The Motley Fool, and unless my suspicions are false...
(28 words)
I bow to your nerdness Anders. We're not worthy, we're not worthy! (Nerditity?) Whatever.
(13 words)

I keep pushing myself until I reach the end;
never looked back. Forward, forward, ever onward
down an early dawn street.

All the while my eyes unblinking, thinking
maybe this path will lead to greatness;
getting there is the hardest part,

full of promises; hope for new tomorrows,
remembering life as it was. Good times mostly.
Rebuilding faith in time and space, reconstructing;

hand-crafted and brought to a new light.
Ignoring the small things, just another dimension
that matters. Each little thing reminds me

never to look back again.
Pulling me forward into the hollow;
thin dark gaps between edges that behind me,

I could see from where I stand. The water looks warm.
I imagine I can hear the people, but I don't have time for that,
you're not blessed with eyes in the back of your head.

Age races along, seeping into sleepless dreams;
I feel the undercurrent take me.
Yesterday, there was one leaf, green and growing strong,

astounded by the sun back-lighting the trees.
Lift your feet quickly, one after the other; don't turn around.
Tread everyday in the same way.

And if it is turned inside-out, life could never be.
So, always keep your eyes a little down the road -
looking forward to something.

**A Cento of today's submissions so far.

(192 words)
memory becomes
the blueprint for tomorrow
your past teaches you

(7 words)

So, we're back here again, aren't we.
We've done this before, didn't we?
Stood on this stoop of love
with constellation eyes
and tympanic hearts a-flutter.
Didn't you mutter those same words
the first time we were here?

I sort of remember this scenario,
it was a wee bit scary, but oh
the exhilaration it offered; reaching
into the coffers of our most tender souls
for the spare change to pay the tolls
required to cross the bridge between us;
wasn't there a bridge between us?

That smile is so familiar; I've seen it.
A lovely affectation of what those butterflies
that have taken up residence in your insides,
bubbling up to the surface, effervescing
through your face, and leaving traces behinds
for me to gather up as our lips meet,
an oh so sweet joining of passions.

Those words! I've heard them before,
soft and lilting, filtering into my ear canal
and channeling directly into my thought processes,
releasing their power and unless I'm mistaking,
set my knees to shaking when the images you speak
wreak havoc on my desire; a fire the you spark
with the stark reality of your "I love you!"

I recall those hands, massaging a memory of
a million such meanderings; tactile and tender,
a deal ender in my thinking. Drinking in
all that your inner beauty presents by way of
understanding that this man of words is left
speechless and mumbling, stumbling over each
loving phrase like the clown prince of passion.

No? You don't remember all that?
Hmmm, I would have sworn we'd been here before!

(230 words)

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?
Waiting...waiting...eh,eh, ARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
You son-of-a-bitch, WHY DON'T YOU GO THROUGH! Oh, this is new.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?
Waiting...waiting...eh,eh, ARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
You son-of-a-bitch, WHY DON'T YOU GO THROUGH! Oh, this is new.
Where's the code? Another wasted attempt? This can't be! Is anybody
in there? Hello? Humph! Here it comes. P - R - 8 -F - H, .

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?
Waiting...waiting...eh,eh, ARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
You son-of-a-bitch, WHY DON'T YOU GO THROUGH! Oh, this is new.
Where's the code? Another wasted attempt? This can't be! Is anybody
in there? Hello? Humph! Here it comes. P - R - 8 -F - H, .
Why you dirty, no-good, son-of-a-mother-without-a-brother, I HATE YOU.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?
Waiting...waiting...eh,eh, ARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
You son-of-a-bitch, WHY DON'T YOU GO THROUGH! Oh, this is new.
Where's the code? Another wasted attempt? This can't be! Is anybody
in there? Hello? Humph! Here it comes. P - R - 8 -F - H, .
Why you dirty, no-good, son-of-a-mother-without-a-brother, I HATE YOU.
I wonder what's on TV. Maybe I can take the dog for a walk. But this poem is killer; it'd be a shame not to post it. Just one more time.

You write a verse,
a couple of stanzas,
expounding your heart
in words soft and tender.
You nuance is metered, your
parlance is profound, and all
you need to do is plug into the
prompt code for all your cohorts to see.
But it didn't go through the first time, so
you give it a quick glance and chance another code.
This time it just sits there as if lost in thought,
when it ought to post your muse. You choose a new code.
Thinking you did something wrong, you retrace your steps,
having regrets that your piece may be lost. At any cost, submit.
Now, dammit, this is getting ridiculous, I mean really!
How many times can the robot police frisk a poet, anyway?
Waiting...waiting...eh,eh, ARRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
You son-of-a-bitch, WHY DON'T YOU GO THROUGH! Oh, this is new.
Where's the code? Another wasted attempt? This can't be! Is anybody
in there? Hello? Humph! Here it comes. P - R - 8 -F - H, .
Why you dirty, no-good, son-of-a-mother-without-a-brother, I HATE YOU.
I wonder what's on TV. Maybe I can take the dog for a walk. But this poem is killer; it'd be a shame not to post it. Just one more time.
What the...it can't be! Saints be praised. It posted! IT POSTED!
Rover, go sit down, Daddy's on a roll. NOOOOO! Typo on line three!

(1206 words)

According to my mother,
there would be days that just
fall short of expectations.
And in anticipation of all
perceived notions, going through
the motions just isn't your bag.
But, you suck it up and know
tomorrow will be another chance to fix
what life had mangled. You untangle
and get a good night sleep, refreshed.
Just remember, Mama warned you!

(53 words)

Things should be moving swimmingly,
across this great divide,
I'm using every ounce of strength
to swim against this tide.
The ebb and flow of all I know
has given us our start,
things should be moving swimmingly
according to my heart.

Life should be a piece of cake,
to give your time its fill,
but it's taking everything you have
and I guess it always will.
You come and go, God only knows
just what your day imparts,
life should be a piece of cake,
according to my heart.

Love should be a wonderment,
a chance to let souls shine,
a tender, everlasting thing
for someone else, not mine.
A give and take for heaven sake
to bless the lives apart,
love should be a wonderment,
according to my heart.

Friends have been a constant joy,
all blessings from above,
guiding hands that understand,
with compassion and with love.
Caring, sharing ups and downs,
no better way to start,
friends can be a constant joy,
according to my heart.

(141 words)

According to an animal loving dyslexic atheist,
his beliefs are always in question,
since his declaration of fact claims
"I never go walking without my god!"

(28 words)
According to my father....

According to my father
we are all simultaneously
as small as a single grain of sand
and as vast as the sky
melting into the sea
According to my father
we are all part of one
living interconnected tapestry
According to my father
I might look for him in
the whisper of the wind
through sun dappled leaves of
a tree or I suppose in
the sky or out there in the sea
But there are those days
when I wonder where is he?
and find questioned comfort
that all according to him
all that he said can truly be

The joy of technology
links one to another
forming friendships
in cyberspace and
The frustration of technology
when one cannot post
tears one from another
makes open expression
a poem thrown into space
from the heart
transformed to tedium
and rather than preventing
robots we unwillingly become
recruited into mindless
typing of unlinked letters
where no words can be shared

According to Poetic Asides Today
According to this site
at least today
no one wants to hear
what I have to day
It's been 9 attempts I started
on post 2 it's not letting me
in but it's letting in you
I can take a hint
I know when I'm not invited
but simple frustation is getting
me fairly incited!

According to my rational self
there is no paranoid intent
that 12 posts have been spit back sent
I'm wiping off the sputum
and putting back a smile
and give this nonsense another little while
I never thought that writing was anything but fun
But this type of repetitive frustration almost has me DONE

I'm now on try thirteen and
others have gotten through
I would hope that the whole site
would crash and the problem
get the attention then that it's due
but my irrational self bends quickly
to what is fair and others seem to
be able to post and so this torture
I shall bear!


I'm done I'm done this is not fun
I will try later on today
It seem that this site will not
accept anything I say


only posted by
(337 words)
In an effort to alleviate the angst inherent in posting today, anyone who wishes to, may post over at the micro poetry blog at the link below.

The sixteen line minimum will be waived (not sure what FB allows) but it may give you a bit of relief.

I administrate the blog and will have no problem if the load ramps up.

I would also have no problem if you chose not to. I am just presenting this as an option.


Although, Robert, would it be preferable to post on the Poetic Asides Facebook page?

(91 words)
Okay Kids, you heard the man. Go to it!

(8 words)

According to my aching back,
it feels a bit like rain,
it's a wee bit sore,if it were more,
I'd guess it's really gonna pour.
The grass could used the moisture,
which would make me a happy fella,
but with my luck I'd be all wet;
bad back and no umbrella!

(47 words)
Iain, there you go! The man made a promise. Stick with it chap! (And if you can, post a bit about "Poetic Asides" bowling shirts, as long as you have RLB's attention!) Seriously Brother, the support is spot on though, isn't it?

ALB - The mascot for VJHS wouldn't be the "Virgins" would it? Side note: My sole surviving aunt (Mom's Older sister) just moved to Vestal to be closer to her daughter. Looking to made a road trip down the line.

Laurie - Write arm! Let the family without dysfunction throw the first ham through the window. (Thanks for nothin', Ozzy)

Taylor - I'm anxious to flip my calendar to that page as well. Saturday looks like a good one around here. Plant away.

(121 words)
I don't care who said it, I just want the shirt! I figured if Iain has Robert's ear, you'd have a better shot at getting your shirt, Patricia. But, mine has to say "Tex" over the right breast pocket.
(38 words)
Tex! (It was a choice between Texas and Louisiana. You'd want I be Louise?)

(13 words)

Standing firmly
feet rooted and drawing
life from whence we came.
Feeling and growing into
an extension of all
the earth provides.
Neither denied, nor refused.
Taken as life giving,
reaching for the strength
to change in unison.
The earth, home and sanctuary.

(35 words)

You were the voice,
sultry and seductive,
in an age of icons, you
were once the front-runner.
You WERE Catwoman
and the best part of
her was your purr.
Santa Baby was your mantra
before Britney was wetting
her diapers. No one holds
a candle to you. But your light
still shines. Eartha Kitt,
whatever you had, I'd loved itt!

(53 words)

On an archaeological dig,
through the historical site
which is my life.
More precisely,
an archive-logical dig.
A search for ancestry;
a validation of descendancy;
a self-searching soul.
Progenitors I had never known,
from places I have never
seen, nor heard about.
All clues in this
investigation, no revelation
left unturned. A return to
my origin, a re-birthing;
an unearthing. Placing me
at the scene of this life,
lived according to the dictates
of my DNA, and nurtured
by whichever diamonds
in the rough I uncover.

(68 words)

At a crossroads of life,
beautiful children,
a loving wife and a gift
given with intent to
be put to wise use,
and the abuse of all that
is in taking too much time
to realize what had been
intended for me on this earth.
When standing before "THE GATES",
will my ledger be in the black?
Will my achievements outweigh
my wastefulness and my avarice?
Do my deeds and intents justify
the life I had lived? Questions.
Self-doubt born of a lack of faith
in the Divine Guidance we all
receive, knowing or not.
In the end, we own what we have done.
And I for one plan on trying to
regain the promise given; return to
the "Home" of my origin.
All things between heaven and earth;
a convergence of mind, heart, body and soul,
all controlled with a Loving Hand.

(124 words)
Marie, Thanks for the usual. Alway appreciated. For the fib, my thinking is "When in doubt, leave them out." Let your breaks punctuate.

Chev, Beth - Ditto on the Appreciation.

Joseph - I read you. I get you. I love Harkerwrite. Reliable understood.

Linda(s) - Stereo never sounded better than both of your takes.

Hannah - Perfect.

More later...

(53 words)
Ptaricia, I know that was your "baby" last year, but I said it as a joke. But if the shirts are your cup of tea, knock yourself out. Here in Buffalo, bowlings shirts are considered formal attire. And I don't get to too many shindigs much.

(45 words)
Curse my damn fingers! Sorry for the "earthy" language, and the misspelling Patricia.

(12 words)
suspended in space
no strings or wires attached
God's science project
(8 words)

They're watching.
Guarding, guiding
silently gliding
in and out of our
realm of thought.
Celestial sentinels,
shielding us in the cuff
of their outstretched
wings. Comfort and peace
their offering; heavenly love
in surrogate for the Most High.
Eternal understanding in the
guise of cherubic eyes.
At the ready, at your shoulder;
having your back.
Always a prayer away.

(47 words)

Your music was musical,
and you wove a fine tapestry,
given to Goffin more than
a partnership; one would Neil
to lament your praises, Oh!
Loved yesterday and today;
tomorrow will be assured.
Left cryin' in the rain
since it poured until September.
Writer and rocker in her
Hallowed fame. A King and queen.
Keeping feet moving by
moving the earth under them.

(50 words)

A diminutive race,
inhabitants of the lands
of this intermediate region,
"Halflings" and "Periannath"
they were called; Bilbo, Frodo,
Samwise and Peregrin were their
names. Tied to the race of men,
at the end of the third age;
the Middle-Earth was home.

(38 words)

When she left him,
he thought he'd land on his feet.
Resiliency was a strong suit,
defenses were all in place,
and in the space of her
vapor trail his true status
became more apparent. His
eyes saw her face in every woman
who dared smile in his direction.
His ears heard nothing but the sound
of her voice in the whisper of wind.
Without her, his legs were broken,
not allowing him to wander any further
than the extent of his longing.
Oh, but his heart. It would take time
for the pieces to mesh together again.
When she left, he had been ruined
beyond anyone's usefulness.
His dismantling was complete.

(100 words)


Code, code, code
Propmt and post
code, code, code
When will this madness end.

I have been wearing my finger
to the bone hoping to drive
this poem point home
and when I get to submit

No code.

Enter no code to get another,
Frustration is surely setting in
brother, my hands are tired,
my eyes are flipping,
I've getting blisters on
my keister from sitting.

Poetic rhyme, one more time,


I'm tired.

(61 words)

April to April,
with November thrown in,
I should start to grin,
but I'm not feeling it,
Constantly dealing with it,
the pokes and the prods,
the poetical nods to the
words being bandied about
in my mind, and I find that
lately, my mumbled jumble
is just that.

But continuance is vital,
for thoughts that are idle
and waiting their turn to
express or excite, I know
it's not right, but it
feeds my muse which I use
indiscriminate of how i feel.
The really big deal is
for the race to continue.
And but I'm tired, and
all my thoughts are exhausted.

(84 words)

Clouds cast a shadow,
cold and miserable,
a testament to languishing
in the embattled trenches
for far longer than could
be imagined for a lifetime.
Alcove of trees; a shrine
to the magnificence
of nature's taunt; a tease.
A bench, isolated in the chill
of the sullen shade; pessimistic
in its occupancy, bench half empty.
A solitary silhouette stationed
where once two shared, daring
fate to separate their oneness.
Now seated in defeat; a surrender
to life's victory, a demise
of gradual decay haunts and beckons.
Motionless and lingering; stalling
for the time remaining for one
broken and worn down by the trials
of a life long adjudication,
in this station waiting
for mercy to commute the sentence.
A driving rain commences.

(101 words)

Internal combustion,
a rambunctiousness of
wordiness. Explosions
on the down stroke,
a poke at the rapid
acceleration of a mind
too long at idle,
a spark to ignite the
gaseous idea of an ill-fated
thought. Asphyxiating and
inebriating, inhalation
of the wafting of fumes.
All exhaust should be vented.
But what is emitted hangs
in a poetic cloud of inspiration.
(49 words)

Under the weather,
not quite right,
head congestion,
up all night,
a bit of fever,
cough and sneeze,
hack and yawn,
huff and wheeze.

Having problems,
I can't sleep,
nodding off,
but not too deep,
feel as if,
I've expired,
but I didn't,
just sick and tired.

(33 words)

The radiant glow of the last wisps of sunshine,
ignite the horizon, crashes of cyclical waves
wash over the warm sand; memories sparked
in heartfelt supplication. Night, on the brink.
Standing in the swell, barefoot and determined
to rinse the hold love had on a ravaged heart,
success is fleeting. The stars appear one by one
announcing their place in the heavens, drawing
eyes up to a brightness gone unnoticed until now.
It is a new constellation. It is the birth of a new galaxy.
It is a new star taking its place in the vastness
of space; a spec of brilliance in the darkness.
As darkness falls, the void of heart had been
closed, always to be seen when eyes divert skyward.

(110 words)
Beacon bright
splits the night,
making everything
all right.
(5 words)
I just hope my striped shirt and whistle won't have to be replaced by a whip and chair!

(17 words)
A moment in time,
this one enchanted evening
brought us together

(9 words)
Bringing together
two hearts on a starlit night,
an evening of love

(9 words)

A night out,
uptown to the
Performing Art Center
known as Shea's;
tickets for the show.
Four Street Corner
Crooners from the coast,
the most recognized
sound around. Out of
the Valle, comes music
no matter what time
of year it is.
Here in Buffalo,
we love our Four Seasons,
the Jersey Boys deliver.

(44 words)
Is someone abandoning the Lake? Where's this link to your page? All this confusion, I can't take this all evening!
(19 words)
Yes. Yes, much better! Now I can enjoy my evening.

(9 words)

A bit of macabre
in black and white,
stories to give
your heart a fright.
A weekly ritual,
my grandfather and me,
watching our program
on his TV.
Just us "men",
grandson and sage,
spending our time,
sharing history's page.
An outline apparent;
a matched silhouette;
music - "The March
of the Marionettes"
My grandfather mimics;
he had me believing
when he joined Alfred
in saying, "Good Evening".

(58 words)
Stars glimmer in sky
crickets chirping at full moon
silent shadows cast

(9 words)

Frogs croak loudly in the swampy bog,
dogs howl in the distant valley,
music lilts softly through the kitchen window.

Lovers walk in a hushed closeness, holding
hands and their breath, anticipating;
waiting for the moment where lips meet

under the streetlight on a summer's evening.
(42 words)

The death of daylight was sadly mourned
in the dirge of a waning afternoon.
The hours that survived were never scorned.

An early rise of the sun was born,
but evening approaches much too soon.
The death of daylight sadly mourned,

a melancholy demise; forlorn
in the mire, a most tragic swoon,
the hours that survived were never scorned.

Lost in the passing were passions torn,
a slow, painful seething, after noon
the death of daylight was sadly mourned.

In the evening sky darkness is adorned
with a preponderance of stars and moon.
The hours that survived were never scorned

as day breaks anew, a life reborn
in a bird filled dawning, a mellow tune
in the death of daylight. Sadly mourned,
the hours that survived were never scorned.

(112 words)

is day
with no sun

(3 words)

In the dying of the light,
love does not sneak away
like a thief in the night,

it holds no power
that it is not allowed;
passions yearn in a labored

attempt to hold life
in the palm of a withered hand,
unwavering in a static moment,

as life nears it's final hours.
Going away silently is not an option,
and the onslaught of evening is cursed.

(56 words)

What's happening here?
It used to be fun, meeting here
for a quick pick-up game
of poetic ping-pong.
Gentle back and forth
of an "unscored ball".
I come for fun and inspired muse,
I find "World of Warcraft"
and carnage. I hardly recognize
the place we constructed.
This used to be my playground!

(50 words)

(Sounds of Silence - Simon and Garfunkel)

(6 words)

"Hey, what a surprise! I had a feeling..."

"A doctor's appointment down the road, I thought..."

"Glad you did. We haven't done this for a..."

"I know! We haven't a lot lately..."



"I love this place. It never changes..."

"Except for Ilio not greeting..."

"I know! Hey, wait, here's Dennis..."

"We were just saying...not the same...your dad..."

"Thanks Folks, enjoy! Buon Appetito!...

"Looking more like him...where were we..."

"Here, always back to here..."

"What are you having?..."

"How's your scallopini?..."

"Pretty soon we'll have the whole house..."

"Thank you..."


"Understanding, I..."

"...didn't. I still don't. I just didn't know what to say..."

"Thank you anyway..."

"No, no dessert. Check please..."

"Thanks for the nice lunch..."

"Talk to you later?..."

"I'll leave the light on..."

"I love you too..."

**"Scenes From an Italian Restaurant ~ Billy Joel"

(116 words)

The hardest thing is letting go;
going on without your dream.
Sometimes, dreams don't enter
into your thinking; a disconnect
between your head and heart.
Promises made are harder to keep
when accountability holds no power
over the realities of a life lived.
So, you make the hard choices;
knowing you have no control over your fate.
You just live as if nothing ever happened,
and allow death the dignity it deserves,
being true to your word and her memory.
The hardest thing is letting go.

(76 words)
LIVE AND LET DIE ~ Paul McCartney
(6 words)

Across the miles,
me stretched from ME to ME to DE,
as wide as the smiles they elicit.
Quite explicit is their muse,
I can't refuse to choose
the work they aspire to,
and inspire. Right to the wire,
brought together in poetic terms,
to express the heart that relies
on the others to remain beating,
words fleeting but preserved in
the milieu of the amassed brilliance.
Subscribed to the thought of
"Play nice, or don't play at all"
I never fall with Marie and Hannah and DE.
(Oh, All right, ME, ME and DE!)
(83 words)

It comes without fail
in the tug of alarm, no harm
no foul in the waking of the soul.
In control for another day of
work and rhyme, my time to shine
and be noticed. A bright Good Morning,
with the chirp of birds, a peek
of a spectacular sunrise, and
nine more minutes on the snooze!
Glibby, gloop, glibby,
nibby, nobby, nooby,
la, la, la, lo, lo.
What the hell was that?
Make it fifteen more minutes
on the snooze!

~ As performed by Oliver. Originally from the musical "HAIR"

(80 words)

A melodic meander through
the obstacles life offers
as speed bumps, preventing
a pass through more quickly
than needed or planned.
Pain is shared, joys are
expanded in the celebration
of other weary travellers.
The path remains the only route
to the only destination.
The wonders of the world
evolve with each passing day
always in a beautiful way,
in the eye of the beholder.

~Chuck Mangione

(53 words)
BLACK COFFEE (by Squeeze)

The nectar of the gods,
never at odds with the
brew, dark and seductive,
caffeinated or non,
always game on with aroma
and tincture; my kryptonite.
By the cup or the gallon,
the pick me up I rely on,
No morning begins until
Mr. Coffee announces his
arrival. Vital for survival.
Going that extra mile, by far!
I like my coffee like I like my
roofing tar. Hot, black and steamy,
not sugared and creamy. BLACK.

(64 words)
COME TOGETHER (McCartney - Lennon)

For a common cause,
a goal to expose the soul,
in a nuanced padding through
the mire that is the presenting
of every day life. Rife with strife
and angst, against all odds, and at odds
with each other. We believe what we believe.
No one is condemned or vilified.
A political slant does not indicate
ones soul. A religious belief will not
sway or sanctify. A life style choice
will not render a voice moot.
And the great divide of life and death
will be forded by all eventually.
But in our words, we are poets!
We carry the "news"; we express.
Not in anger, not in desecration,
not in some moral/immoral masturbation.
For a cause. The propagation of poetry.
It cries out with one voice.
"Come together, right now, over me!"

(117 words)
Thanks PKP. My poetry is not presented as heterosexual, Catholic, Conservative, Republican, (which I am), nor as homophobic, anti-religion, Liberal, or Democrat (which I am not). My work has always been accepted in that "anonymity". I write poetry from a place so deep inside me I don't even know where the bottom is. I self-edit when I need to, and respect what others write and say. An open book with an open mind. Does any of the above diminish my voice, now that the truth is stated? I should hope not.

(90 words)
Thanks "Doc", you ARE a Pearl!
(5 words)

A lost connection:
a faulty wireless router,
giving and taking away.

A frayed cord on the telephone
cracking and crackling and
inaudible incoherency.

A heart string that was
forever pulled taut but
was never allowed to break.

A sibling rivalry that threatened
the familial bond beyond compare,
brought to bare by the passing of Pa.

A failed divorce, a phoenix rising,
in the imminent demise we all face,
dealt with in grace and dignity

for our sake as well as the kids.

(69 words)

You touch the light switch,
you touch it again.
One more time for good measure.
A treasure to be sure,
but battling a compulsion
and repulsion that threatens your
sanity. There is no vanity
in your foible. A matter of mind over
repetitive matter. Rest assured.
The light is out. The door is locked.
Your slippers rest at the edge of the bed,
facing south, and crossed the way your
feet hit the floor every morning.
And despite your malady, the reality
is that I wouldn't change a thing about you.
I'll just remain here to see you through.
We can do this, together.

(87 words)

More than five times have I been blessed,
from my vantage point, the middle man.

Two sisters and four brothers
all offspring of the same mother,

all with their quirks and styles,
(everyone with Dad's smile) and

a completely separate branch on the family tree,
foliage gone, but the rings around the trunk

assure a longevity; a brevity in the span
of this vast universe so created, and elated

that we have come to reconnect at a time
where the incredible shrinking surname

wanes towards obscurity. A factual surety
that frames this portrait with love and understanding

no longer demanding and pompous, an enormous relief
in the belief that in assuming the mantle left behind

we will find our footing and map out new ground,
profound in the knowledge of our origin and happy

we were afforded the opportunity to flex our wile,
while never straying far from our connection.

Joseph, your history is our mystery. Not around long enough
to make a blemish, although leaving your mark on our fabric.

Cynthia, queen mother so assumed, groomed for the position
of matriarch with enough of a spark to be yourself.

Paul, sure and independent, most reticent to belong,'
too strong for your own good, a marvel with wood.

Tim, wild and free, determined to take life by the throat
and squeeze every ounce out of its living.

Ken, backbone in question, but heart always in place,
a face only a mother could love, (and she could have been jiving!)

Laurie, a singular soul, her only attachments are her siblings
and her felines, straddling the fine line of "Crazy Cat Lady".

Where does that leave me? The word guy, know-it-all, writing the script that skirts dysfunction for the joy our bond provides.

You got that right, Brother!

(264 words)
And tomorrow marks 25 years ago at my house. Congrats Hannah!

(10 words)
Oh bother! I'm headed back to the Hundred Acre Woods. I'd rather deal with Heffalumps.

(14 words)
All further submissions to the prompt by me will be posted at my blog, "Through the Eyes of a Poet's Heart" at the link below. My comfort level has been shaken here.

Joseph, my respect for you and your abilities has become stratospheric. You are a marvelous poet and a tremendous talent. That has been apparent through your work from day one. Now, I have to add, a beautiful human being. Thanks for caring that much. I think if there is any naivete out there, it is in the denial of the parties involved that their intentions were nothing but honorable and that the "other person" was in the wrong. The "Patriot" and the "Activist" are doing Robert and the Poetic Asides poets a grave injustice. Knock it off.

Thanks for all your support and good luck to your writing endeavors.

(139 words)
It is said, where there's hope, there is life.
And life carries the promise of every new dawning.
In this promise, the offer of the gift of life
is glowing with love of a Good and Gentle nature;
nature, like the awakening of a new spring.
In the Ever-lasting Spring of our new life,
we will take solace in knowing that hope springs eternal.

*Posted with trepidation. Once bitten...

(63 words)

Making a change for change sake,
is akin to shouting into the wind.
Intentions aside, masking the futility
of where your fire is directed.
In retrospect, nothing really
does transform. It is manipulated.
It is cajoled; a good front is placed
before the vile vision still seething.
Thoughts become controlling; left to
simmer and boil over again in time.
Turning a jaundiced eye to the truth.
You hope for better, but don't hold your breath!
How's this hope and change working out?

(71 words)

I celebrate with you,
in familiar places; in time honored ways.
Dinner for two where love was planted,
walking along the rail where the Great Lake
languishes, lapping the break wall as a back beat
to the gulls wailing. Boats, sailing in the still
chill of a winter recently departed, stopping
at a point where a proposal became a life long commitment.
A view of photographs, remembering the past
and her role in our right now, and how you looked
a quarter of a century ago. A woman-child
with a nervous eye to the future; the present of that past.
Going airborne over the "speed bumps" of life and landing
no worse for wear on all four feet, replete with
the memory of a nervous I do. Romance re-ignites
a smoldering ember, hopelessly. On this
anniversary, I get hopeless all over again.

(125 words)
Thanks De, aren't I morally bankrupt enough?

(6 words)

The alarm drawn and incendiary,
lighting a fire under my tired ass,
a kick start to the trenches and
the tangle of traffic yet to be fought.

Swinging feet to the floor the ache
that had settled into the kidneys
has spread across the lower back,
precipitating a reach around and rub

to eradicate the twinges. Joints creak
and the ability to speak comes out as
a series of groans and an expletive,
PG-13 and a tube of Tartar Control toothpaste.

It's such a waste to let the morning get
any further along without a song or at least
a vagrant whistle to accent the caffeinated
motivator on what looks to be a shitty day.

Two distinct sets of tappings on the door,
alerts to the fact that the time spent
untangling the ravages of sleep from your matted
mess of hair, was much to long to matter.

The rush of humanity on an early morning,
proffers the perfect opportunity to take
an inventory of the life survived so far.
Two beautiful daughters and a wife engaged

and lost in conversation through most of the long night.
The morning took a turn. It's gonna be a good day.

(175 words)
Bruce, glad your day was memorable. My 25th anniversary wasn't too shabby either.
All in all, a good day.

(17 words)

Always with a quip
or a sarcastic jab
not one to let
a high hanging
fast ball linger
going for the jugular
with a smile or a tweak,
trying to find a serious
side to all life has to offer,
only to laugh all the way
to the next one liner
nothing is finer
than to be at wits end.

(51 words)
Been aware of the vote early, vote often aspect of the Poet Laureate.
Been holding my end up (which invariably makes me walk funny).

Go vote again peeps!
(25 words)

Im having a problem with my colon
and my semicolon too
Im not a comma chameleon
my apostrophe usage is few
a hyphen takes my breath away
I hyper-ventilate
my wife has all the periods
thankfully shes rarely late
there is so much to question
the answers leave their marks
the mad dash to the finish line
is saved for the leaders what a lark
(I dont use parentheticals)
they just get in the way
I never hack a bracket
and I haven't to this day
there has never been a quotation
that has ever left its "mark"
and no clue of a virgule
a slash would be too stark
I could extend my exclamation
but I just dont have a point
I better quite this writing
before they toss me from this joint

(111 words)

A length of cord attaches,
wound and secured to the center
of your emotion. A stretch
to say the least, that all tied up
can keep the rest of you from unraveling,
hearts traveling at the speed of light,
second star to the right, and straight on
until morning. Without warning your senses
drop all pretenses and leave you hanging
precariously, daring to wear thread thin
and snap at the first sign of pressure and doubt.
But, therein lies the crux of your dilemma.
What had once connected to a fleeting past;
a love for a lifetime, again joins you to your
very survival and you strive to hold on,
both hands clutching and hoping for your vital signs
to be as vibrant as the day is long.
You are feeling stronger every day.
Heartstrings remain in tune; their symphony
is the song for an all-consuming love.
Hum along if the words escape you.

(136 words)
De, it resets every day. You can only vote once in a twenty-four hour period, but you could have gotten back in daily. But keep trying it may not be a "stroke of midnight" thing.

(34 words)

Always the instigator,
starting something at every turn,
there's so much to learn, and so little time
spent in rhyme. A fresh start,
a rejuvenation; the rebirth of heart,
a salutation to the new day.
In introduction, souls unite
doing what's right, right off the bat.
The sun rises, the journey embarks,
hearkening to the initiation
of this daily itinerary, nothing scary,
just a chance to commence with
the life to which you had been inaugurated.
Slated for greatness, starting now.
Funny how beginnings alway pick up
where endings tend to leave off.

(79 words)

A challenge within a challenge:

The last line of this haiku become the
first line of your haiku. Can the PA
poets keep the chain alive?

distant horizon
giving perspective of end
window to the world

(36 words)
Tim and RJ, nice start. The intention is a "Barrel of Monkeys" kind of thing. The last line of the previous haiku becomes the first line in the next, and so on. A daisy chain of haiku. The haiku that never ends.

(41 words)

Sheer delight awaits
in the heart of endless love
beating with passion

(13 words)

love has no ending
since the beginning of time
love has continued

(14 words)

The final juncture in the meeting of minds,
thoughts refined and lingering,
fingering the guilty party with a crooked eye,
the guy with too much time on his hands.
Biding his idleness in minutes and hours
torrential showers of wordiness left
languishing, lurid and vacuous his
rant, and he can't decide if he should hide
or suffer the slings and arrows of an ill-fated
debate on the merits of a productive muse.
The tact that he chooses, loses something
in transcription, a dereliction of duties
ceases to be a burden; a certain means to an end.

(83 words)

I'll re-organize the two threads and post them as one and two.

It's getting rather maddening to follow.

Hold your additions until then. Thanks.

(26 words)

A challenge within a challenge:

The last line of this haiku become the
first line of your haiku. Can the PA
poets keep the chain alive?

Rules: The intention is a "Barrel of Monkeys" kind of thing. The last line of the previous haiku becomes the first line in the next, and so on. The first continuance posted will be the thread chosen to follow.

A daisy chain of haiku. The haiku that never ends.

distant horizon
giving perspective of end (Walt)
window to the world

Window on the world,
Reveals the biggest picture, (Janet Rice Carnahan)
Love has no ending.

love has no ending
since the beginning of time (Walt)
love has continued

love has continued
as its very creator (Marie Elena)
God, who continues

God who continues
to love, to forgive and save, (De Jackson)
hold me very close.

(125 words)

This is the second thread of a challenge within a challenge:

The last line of this haiku become the
first line of your haiku. Can the PA
poets keep the chain alive?

Rules: The intention is a "Barrel of Monkeys" kind of thing. The last line of the previous haiku becomes the first line in the next, and so on. The first continuance posted will be the thread chosen to follow.

A daisy chain of haiku. The haiku that never ends.

distant horizon
the line where sea and sky meet (RJ Clarken)
magical ingress

Magical ingress,
Into the earth's heart deep core, (Janet Rice Carnahan)
Sheer delight awaits.

Sheer delight awaits
in the heart of endless love (Walt)
beating with passion

beating with passion
the percussive mission strikes (Linda Goin)
home in the dancer.

home in the dancer,
hope tiptoes, twirls and tumbles (De Jackson)
reaching for the sky.

reaching for the sky
Set free from boundaries (Tim Snodgrass)
A child of the stars

(148 words)
CHAINKU ONE (Thanks to CJillFriend for the label)

daisies and petals
grow in beauty and stature
blooming without end

(15 words)
CHAINKU TWO (Again, thanks to CJillFriend)

waiting to unfold
in splendor and in glory
endless; unending
(12 words)

Getting it down to a science,
a chemistry ensues,
at the root of all alcohol
the real process rings through,
In the art of fermentation,
zymurgy isn't to scary,
but for the purpose of this rhyme -
end word in the dictionary.

(35 words)
M Wood, nice piece. Wrote similarly titled poem to one of last years prompts. A good take.

(16 words)
Daniel Ari Fleischmann, we knew you well through your work before we "knew" you. Glad to finally "meet" the man behind the nom de plume.

(24 words)

If you set every poet
side-by-side around the equator
until they are able to join hands,
the beginning of the line
and the end of the line
disappears, leaving nothing
but poets for a far as the eye can see,
forever and ever.

Can I have an Amen?

(39 words)
Thanks Tim. It's something Marie and I do on our blog from time to time.
As Iain has stated, string as few together and it paints a great picture. I have to be away for a few hours. I'll compile them again and see where we are on it. Write on!

(49 words)

This is the second thread of a challenge within a challenge:

The last line of this haiku become the
first line of your haiku. Can the PA
poets keep the chain alive?

Rules: The intention is a "Barrel of Monkeys" kind of thing. The last line of the previous haiku becomes the first line in the next, and so on. The first continuance posted will be the thread chosen to follow.

A daisy chain of haiku. The haiku that never ends.

distant horizon
the line where sea and sky meet (RJ Clarken)
magical ingress

Magical ingress,
Into the earth's heart deep core, (Janet Rice Carnahan)
Sheer delight awaits.

Sheer delight awaits
in the heart of endless love (Walt)
beating with passion

beating with passion
the percussive mission strikes (Linda Goin)
home in the dancer.

home in the dancer,
hope tiptoes, twirls and tumbles (De Jackson)
reaching for the sky.

reaching for the sky
Set free from boundaries (Tim Snodgrass)
A child of the stars

a child of the stars
a glittering universe (RJ Clarken)
waiting to unfold

waiting to unfold
regathered brillance lumbered (Jenifer McNamara)
dawn's golden invite

dawn's golden invite
shows its breathtaking visage (Peter Amsel)
near the edge of space

near the edge of space
coldness permeates all things (Peter Amsel)
leaving us alone

leaving us alone
we bask in shadows and light (Peter Amsel)
waiting for the dawn

waiting for the dawn
we keep our eyes fixed ahead (Theresa Cavicchio)
on the horizon

(216 words)

A challenge within a challenge:

The last line of this haiku become the
first line of your haiku. Can the PA
poets keep the chain alive?

Rules: The intention is a "Barrel of Monkeys" kind of thing. The last line of the previous haiku becomes the first line in the next, and so on. The first continuance posted will be the thread chosen to follow.

A daisy chain of haiku. The haiku that never ends.

distant horizon
giving perspective of end (Walt)
window to the world

Window on the world,
Reveals the biggest picture, (Janet Rice Carnahan)
Love has no ending.

love has no ending
since the beginning of time (Walt)
love has continued

love has continued
as its very creator (Marie Elena)
God, who continues

God who continues
to love, to forgive and save, (De Jackson)
hold me very close.

hold me very close
tripping monkeys with (CJillFriend)
daisies and petals

daisies and petals
grow in beauty and stature (Walt)
blooming without end

(143 words)

A gasp for breath, filling lungs
with the energy to expound the
final bit of wisdom before the end
draws near, with all the pomp and circumstance
of a one man band. Stand on your
laurel hoping it had been enough
to draw eyes and attach lasting impressions
to your name after every epitaph
has been uttered. There is felt a flutter
inside and all tried and true lessons
come to roost to boost your ego and
bring forth the verbiage long awaited.
It has been fated; to the showers
and wash all previous failures away,
a mantle of newness becomes a cloak
and every word spoken makes a lasting
mark. It becomes your last word.
Until the next great idea explodes
into the shrapnel of thought.
They'll be picking your brain for years.

(118 words)

A gasp for breath, filling lungs
with the energy to expound the
final bit of wisdom before the end
draws near, with all the pomp and circumstance
of a one man band. Stand on your
laurel hoping it had been enough
to draw eyes and attach lasting impressions
to your name after every epitaph
has been uttered. There is felt a flutter
inside and all tried and true lessons
come to roost to boost your ego and
bring forth the verbiage long awaited.
It has been fated; to the showers
and wash all previous failures away,
a mantle of newness becomes a cloak
and every word spoken makes a lasting
mark. It becomes your last word.
Until the next great idea explodes
into the shrapnel of thought.
They'll be picking your brain for years.

(118 words)

It still irks,
the pea had been extricated from my mattress
and replaced by a bowling ball.
And all I hear is Journey in my head,
"Don't Stop Believing". But, I gave up
all hope of it making any sense.
No closure. Loose ends.
Unfinished business. And those
insipid ducks! Consigliore clings to life.
Or not. The head of the family is nuts.
Or not. Paulie Walnuts is your last loyal soldier.
Or not. And how do you get "Gabbagoul" from Cappicola?
Suspicious eyes wander around the diner.
Flipping the hit parade. In walks the missus.
Glance at the menus. Junior arrives.
Your daughter can't parallel park. She's getting whacked!
Or not. A guy goes to the restroom, eyes meet; tension builds.
Baby girl walks in, heads turn. Get the onion rings.
And Phil Leotardo sleeps with the fishes, sort of.
Fade to black; don't stop believing.

(127 words)
Penny, it works for me. Way to close it out.

(9 words)
Now we just need Phil McCracken to post something!

(8 words)

A long journey to the place we stand,
hand in hand and looking forward
for the first time in the same direction.
No dissection, or analysis, just a kiss
between two lost souls, yearning to
feel the burning of passion long languishing.
The anguish of lost years playing a role
in the fervor to which we cling to this "new" life.
You, my wife, and me, the guy of words and ideas,
pleas for a together that may falter, but never fall.
And suddenly, love returned and life was good again.
(85 words)
...and I keep tripping over dangling participles! Go figure! Thanks Anders!

Hey, it's ok, I'll keep the Lake afloat by myself for a few days. Are you knocking my rapidity?

(28 words)

...to ask if Tammy has a sister!

(10 words)

Labored and shallow,
a respirator kept the last vestige
of breath on a regimented pace.

Inhalation and exhalation mechanized;
kept the plane of life still in view
for eyes closed and mortified.

All sense of pulse was just
a faint memory, and suddenly
the sound of a father's voice was hard to recall.

The strength of it nestled in a heart
so deeply that it defied fibrillations.
The ashen hue of his drawn cheekbones

made the vision of him indistinguishable.
Erratic and broken now, each gasp begged
to be his last. A faint squeeze

of a clutching hand flashed the image
of your "hero" walking you across the street
for the first time. Now as he crossed,

it was your grip that led the way.
There came a gurgle; a guttural gag.
And suddenly the room fell silent.

(124 words)

A nice view I have here.
High, I can see right over these...
...you know, I wonder just how high
an elephant's eye really is!

Ack! Crows! Shoo! Scat!
A beautiful day anyway.
Azure sky,a smattering of clouds
Ha! Azure. Smattering. Big Words;

make me sound like a smart guy,
uh, sort of. I can see for miles.
Some folks come this way,
and some prefer that way.

Still others...what the...?
Someone's coming from over there!
What a hideous beast! A real dog.
And the thing on all fours ain't much better.

Blue Gingham? Who the hell wears gingham?
Did she see me? She didn't see me!
I'll just hang around here for a while longer.
I wonder what's in the basket?

Hey you! You, with the red shoes!
The bent nail in back, can you...
Ahhhh! Who? Dor-a-thee? Hey Babe,
what's with the gingham? Uh, never mind.

You're going where? Emerald City?
You're not messing with my mind, are you?
Go with you? Eh, sure why not!

(153 words)

A heart beats; strongly keeping the pace of a life,
a metronome that pulses every movement.
Engaged in the pursuit of poetic pondering
and wondering where it will all end.
But, in the beating of that solitary heart
words take on a life of their own, and touch souls.

For deep within the souls
of the tender spirit, survival maintains the life
to which we have become accustomed, holding our hearts
to a standard that continues to assure our movement
until this tantric dance comes to its graceful end,
leaving those left behind to ponder

what magic had been born in the grouping of words. In pondering
the merely obvious, they learn more of what the soul
can provide to your thought process, and to what end
would words contribute to their lives.
Like the most lilting symphonic movement,
we take the music of words to heart.

Step lightly in this poetic dance. For what remains in the heart
is immune from the scrutiny of others. It is left for you to ponder
and thoughts you had looked upon as moving
become barriers to the total depth of the soul
as it relates to the yearning for an expressive life,
becoming a means to your end.

And in the end
all nuanced verse that lay languishing in a labored heart
become the body of work that is your life.
Leave all exposed for the world; leave them pondering
how these words are able to placate their souls,
for it will come to shape them; control their movement.

And in releasing these moving
pieces of your poetic heart you find their reservoir never ending.
More wisdom and wit will revive the tired souls,
lifting the sorrow and bringing a joyous voice to a loving heart.
They leave little left to ponder
except for the beauty we poets impart on these lives.

Every breath becomes the movement of the heart
and in living we put an end to our pondering,
words take on a life of their own, and touch souls.

(309 words)
Ellenelizabeth - Thank you for that. I find that the more I hear of the "voices" of all the other excellent poets here, the more my "voice" speaks to me. That one had been brewing for a while. As Robert has expressed in the past few days, the "coming together" of we expressive souls is truly life altering. Just as your work has become.

Robert - What the vote exposed has really only certified what we all felt here on "the playground". You have been and remain to be our own Poet Laureate for a long time. The election just gave you broader scope.
Great work, my friend. You make me a better poet.

Chev - Stay on that path. You'll find that when you see no one else before you, it is because they are all behind you. And we are all behind you!

Joseph - High compliment coming from you. I love your heart and your passion. You are one helluva good man. And an extraordinary poet. An honor to post alongside you.

As Joseph did earlier, I also thank Daniel Ari for his amazing sestina template. "Heart in Words" was done with its help. I also admire your muse and work Daniel.

Speaking of "gadgets", "Commander Anders" you have done more to make life easier at Poetic Asides as any one. When you get melodies to those lyrics, I wanna hear them, one closet composer to another.

Beth and Kimiko - My list of must reads gets longer all the time, due mainly to your talents and voices. Thank you for bringing them home to roost.

(261 words)

How's it go?
Stop and go.
Come and go.

There we go.
Good to go.
Stay or go.

Go / no go.
Twenty-nine down, one to go.
Get it to go.

I'll have that to go.
Where did you go?
Where did the time go?

Touch and go.
Go, go, Gadget, go!
Letting go.

Let her go.
Always on the go.
Do not pass go!

Get up and go.
Look at him go!
Green means go.

Miles to go.
Time to go.
C'mon, let's go!

I gotta go.

(63 words)

The race is done.
Long after the starter pistol
has been holstered and
all participant have been bolstered
by the camaraderie and friendship;
this poetic kinship. Brought to bare
by a good and driven Brewer
whose yeast prompted the rising of
a kneaded muse so expressed,
at the very best level for which one could hope.
As each "runner" crosses the line,
a cheer of "Well done!" goes up
from the crowd, as loud as anything
heard in the realm silent thought
wrought by artisans of the written word.
All Michaelangelo's of Muse.
In the end, everyone wins.

(84 words)

This will carry on,
'til Wednesday hits the skids,
writing rhymes of letting go,
then no one ever did.

"We'll see you on the playground,
My facebook name is this,
say goodbye; let's not cry"
just seal it with a kiss,

one group hug, a random shrug,
a wave and toodle-loo,
this is so sad, I feel so bad,
yeah, I feel lousy too.

So you vow to post just one more verse,
a life awaits your presence,
you save your comment and heave a sigh
but it drip with such pretense.

You're never going to stop this thing,
you may as well admit it,
so write one more, and then another,
go ahead submit it.

Before you know, November's here,
this time you're gonna show 'em.
But you take a peek, and slyly sneak
away to write more poems.

This is a vicious circle,
this rat race takes a slide,
and Robert Brewer is the cause
of this Poetic Aside.

Nope, still didn't let go...

(139 words)

Time and distance have a way
of dissipating memories,
leaving shadows of remembrances
groping for familiarity.
Held in your heart sometimes
buys moments to solidify
the thoughts, but as
the hours and days, meld
into weeks and years,
the misty yesterdays trail off,
recalled on occasion but
left behind in a stride toward
the next new thing, becoming
a fond smile on some cold winter's night.
You love your old ghosts,
but there comes a time to let them fade.

(67 words)

A safety zone exists,
where life becomes manageable,
and the feeling of invincibility
is commonplace. Every trace
of angst sits just out of reach,
lurking in the shadow of doubt
and fear. The opportunity exists
to master this new domain.
It is safe; protecting a fragile
muse that is used to coddling.
But then, a time comes when comfort
must be foregone, to offer
growth and depth to the skills
acquired. Tired of never being
adventurous,the shackles are broken,
a token of a newly perceived confidence.
Stepping into unexplored territory,
excitement bubbles to the top.
The fear of falling doesn't
sway the bravado espoused.
They safety net is gone,
but the instincts say,
"Take a chance, let go"

(98 words)

Rooted to the foundation,
everything feels substantial.
No matter the shift in consciousness,
feelings become one with the surroundings.
In the winds of change, a banner
unfurls leaving defenses down.
Charge the energy; feeling the chi.
Back foot weighted and steady,
ready to face the challenge,
letting everything sink to the floor.
Empty all wasted feelings; release them.
Differentiate what matters.

(50 words)

Holding hands longingly
searching for the words that
will never placate the aching of heart.
There's a start, but it falls short
at every turn, burning the midnight oil
to completely embroil the soul.
Eyes avoid contact, an exact refusal
knowing the shared history and connection.
For everyone's protection it is agreed;
let go on the count of three.
But the the grasp remains tight,
letting go is terribly hard.
The deadline looms and all is hell
until the midnight chime begins.
Everyone wins; the battle of whims is over,
and poets return to their scattered lives;
collective sighs and a vow to visit
every Wednesday for the weekly reconciliation.
Wait a minute...today's Wednesday!
A new prompt is due for the poetic masses
and asses. April Poem-a Day 2010 can
finally be put to rest. Kiss it goodbye.
There's a test this Wednesday.
Many will be called, and few will refuse.
You snooze, you lose!

(139 words)

I can't believe it's you.
You look regal; majestic.
Amongst your peers,
and yet, you stand out in that crowd.

Quiet, unassuming and blooming
into the strong and determined woman
we quietly payed you'd be.
Finally finding your way,

on the course to a dream.
We should have known.
Your sister worships you
for she knows, she'd be

less well off without your influence.
The games you played despite
your seven year age difference,
put you on the course

to take your spot on that stage.
You played school, the two of you.
She, the eager student.
You, the patient teacher.

You taught her an alphabet.
You showed her math skills.
She acquired reading skills at three,
thanks to your loving tutelage.

She learned what you taught,
as she continues to do today. I've never
seen her so proud as when you walked
across that platform to take

what was well earned and deserving.
You graduate today.
Now you are certified to do
what you've done all your life.

Teach. You've even taught me
a thing or two. Because of you,
I've learned that beauty and brains
are a lethal combination but

hold great power in the proper hands.
I've learned that my methods weren't as
maddening as I feared, giving you
a firm bit of ground on which

to make your stand. And I get
the sense that I'm not letting you go
out into the world unprepared to deal
with life, I'm giving you to the world

to give others the pleasure of your smile,
the warmth of your personality,
the courage of your convictions,
and the same advantage your sister had

in learning how to survive this life.
For no matter where you go, there you are!

(251 words)