Friday, April 30, 2010

If Arizona's Iced Tea, I'll Drink Coffee

I was born
here in a Capital place,
as in DC, or so I'm told
by the yellowed scrap of paper
embossed with a seal,
which Birthers might say is forged,
but it's not, and that's
a happy circumstance for me,
because I hear folks like me
are different, maybe even
and with that lone American
difference comes a boat load of perks,
including the right to say
I don't see any difference
when it comes to simple
but I do feel different
than those who want to speak
in the name of the same
old stupid conceit
that some belong
and some don't,
all the while they search
for differences
and seize on the might
to drive wedges
between us,
and if they end up driving out
our differences with this crocked-up
lack of a due process
cloaked in the flag, well that would be
the real crime.

It's the final day of NaPoWriMo, an occasion marked with the mixed emotions of satisfaction, relief and a touch of sadness. Today's prompt from ReadWritePoem isn't really a prompt at all, but a free day (and farewell). A huge thank-you to the folks at RWP, without whose nudging this would have been much more difficult and much less interesting. Unfortunately today marks the last day of the RWP site too, and it will be missed. As far as this poem, I generally try to steer away from political commentary, but some issues demand a reckoning, and yesterday's news-inspired piece got me lathered up. Thanks to everyone who played along or commented during the 30-day Challenge, and I hope to keep the poetry rolling well beyond April.


Prop-topped seed dropping
on its breeze, prays for proper
berth to burial

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Straying Math of Dogs and Bullets

The news never stops, but sometimes it breaks
strange, like when the cops tell us,
Man throws dog at sister.

It didn't fly far, but across town,
the Police [did] finally catch [another] stray dog
on [the] Eisenhower Expressway

I hear it's driving a '98 Toyota Corolla,
which has nothing to do with
the 3 critically injured
when [their] vehicle hits [a] pole
on [the] Kennedy Expressway

They could be spooked by the report
that a Suburban girl, 11, threatened
to shoot up [her] school bus

She's been told pink bullets
are the latest preteen fad,
and to prove her absurd point,
there's more bad news of
2 children injured in [a] Far South Side shooting.

Add their names to the piled-up statistics
and the multiple PR reasons
an often divided
[State] Legislature [and Mayor] Daley [will try again]
to crack down on gun violence

This equation's always out of balance.

It's Day 29 of NaPoWriMo and yes that means only one more day of Challenge fun left. Today's prompt from ReadWritePoem is front page news. The task is to take 5 to 10 headlines from a favorite news source and build a story out of them. My seven headlines all came from the Chicago Sun-Times Website. They're in italics, and I smoothed them out a little with bracketed additions.

Young blooms

Young blooms don't suppose
impertinence of a nose
thrust uninvited

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Green splatters, a hint

They sprouted more than flew, and
there were quite a few, possibly dozens —
though, looking back, I always do
tend to exaggerate such incidents.

Anyway, this aphid swarm of grassy
greens decided to make me home,
and my chest crawled with specks, while
I waited for a bus to St. Peter's.

They could have been splattered "as if's"
spat from the mouths of hungry sparrows,
taken mid-swallow with a guffaw at
this tourist dressed in DayGlo.

I might've gotten the omen, but
intuition wouldn't surrender its clues
how to shoo insect guests attracted
by a coincidental cloth.

Perhaps they were meant as subtle hints —
an eternal city keeps its own agenda.

It's Day 28 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt from ReadWritePoem is intuition, in which we're supposed to write about an "a-ha" moment. I don't really have those, mine are more like "oh crap look what I don't understand" moments. This is based on a true story from my first visit to Rome, and no aphids were harmed in the making of it.

Blunders Happed

He pleads innocent
blunders happed by haste
then takes her forgiveness
a rightful plunder

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Playing the Archangel (an acrostic)

Militantly mustachioed, at least in my mind's eye, and
Invincibly attired toe-to-wing in sterling silver, he
Commands legions less scary than our mechanized monsters, but
Hell's soon-to-be tenants are awed enough to scurry. Swords, not
Angelic in a cherubic sense, wilt Lucifer's pride, and
Exiting those gates, the now-Dark Prince howls his lament. I picture
Laughs on Cloud 9, Michael sharing beers and war stories with chums.

It's Day 27 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt from ReadWritePoem is let someone else take the lead, in which we're suppose to write an acrostic poem with the first letter of each line spelling out a word that has special meaning to us. I used my confirmation name of Michael, which I picked as a 13-year-old because the Archangel seemed particularly bad-ass, as far as saints go.


Pick-me-up mottoes
repeated sottovoce
can't avoid flatt'ning

Monday, April 26, 2010

They Say, Times 3

They say,
Those who won't learn
the spirally past
are doomed to walk
its re-coiling paths
again, and I can't
argue with precedent.
I can point out,
my present and future
doubts, kneeling
down with guttersnipe
gifts and a candle
lit up to appease
history's stalking ghost.
What I really want
is to snuff it.

They say,
This world's gotta date
marked expiry
and it's all set to go
sour with a big bang
or a small bust
out from the fridge
of twenty-twelve's
wintry chilling.
Lately, there have been
jumbo packs of weirdness
spilling onto
every last shelf,
but things got strange
long before the Mayans
began tying knots.

They say,
you can take the brutish
and dress them up
natty, extolling
their hirsute
vices in basso
profundo voices
till we all queue
back to snatch them.
I've heard the jingle,
but I'm drawn instead
to wisdoms spoken
by officials
not officially
allowed to speak.
Their off-the-record's nice
and scratchy.

It's Day 26 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt from ReadWritePoem is get scrappy, in which we're suppose to revive the corpse of an abandoned poem. I used the fragments from three half-formed ideas to piece together this one.


His mouth's an eighteen-wheeler
trucking in pre-packaged ideas
from a nondescript depot

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Hyperbole Fills the Belly and Keeps It Lean

"The Pacific's the best
show on TV!
Best ... show ... ever,"
one lean teen blares,
wanting the whole train
to know it.

I don't know
how many shows
he's seen in his thin
decade of watching, but
that won't stop him
from its knowing.

I do envy
such certitude
compared to my fat
knack for lacking it, and
I bet he sleeps
well, tonight.

His mind's eased,
its hunger not baited.
Me, I'll be
restless and gorging
just to begin
the comparison.

It's Day 25 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt from ReadWritePoem is first things first, in which we're supposed to use the first words spoken to us today to launch our poems. I used bits of an overheard conversation from last week instead.


Religion's become
a store-bought brand, packaged
in age-old pizazz

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Tips for Being a Whipping Boy (or Girl)

You've made a sensible decision,
joining these ranks of stomped-on stand-in's.
I'll be your Virgil and guide you through
the ropes too often learned at lashing.

Don't overlook the import of choosing
proper cause and duly sainted miens.
Be better judge of princely nature,
for when he does stray, it's you we'll hurt.

The world has no shortage of pricks, and
to keep the knife at bay, befriend him
you must, lest he misbehaves solely
for the pleasure of watching you writhe.

If it comes to that, all you'll have left
is to pray, he meets an untimely end,
and loads your back with shuffled-off cares
to scape back to the wilds whence you came.

It's Day 24 of NaPoWriMo and the prompt from ReadWritePoem is find a phrase, exploring the origins of a common saying. For my phrase, I chose Whipping Boy, which derives from the once-royal practice of keeping a boy at court to beat whenever their prince misbehaved.

Proddy Gal

She's a proddy gal,
wasting borrowed capital
to push his returns

Friday, April 23, 2010

Odd Coupling: For the Love of this Internet

I know it's best
to keep these things professional,
but I've begun to crush
under the graceful strokes
of your sixty words
per minute.

You'd be amazed
how much I've learned from the simple
arrangements and careless
chats of your lives lived
so transparently
in front of me.

You may not feel
as intimately tied; that's okay.
All I'm asking is,
you'll stay, and sustain me
with your momentary

It's Day 23 of NaPoWriMo and there's only one week left to the Challenge. The prompt from ReadWritePoem is unlikely couples, pairing a voice and an action that don't usually go together. For mine I created a love poem from the Internet itself, and who could resist such a come-on?


Acid droplets
borne on envious breaths
erode the cheery
epitaph his future planned
to engrave

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Corvus Corona

Gaining a Perspective on Earth Day

She stood
thus, I wrapped fleshy
tendrils about scratchy
bark and consoled her
for all the trees I imagined,
rightly or wrongly,
were sacrificed to rusty
notions of progress
neatly packaged in
emporium form;
the saffron leaves
and peppery roots
lost to dusty

That's when
the crow came,
glowing eyes above
fierce wings, his caw
hinting at mockery:
"Don't flinch,
I'm here to help,
and you'll not get far
imposing such
improper intentions."

"The trick," he went on
reassuring me,
"is to always
stand apart.

"Yesterday's sigh becomes
tomorrow's squall
unless today's kept
at a distance.

"Fly up,
but not too fast, or
the only thing you'll feel
is dizzy."

And that,
without another word,
is just what
he did.

The Day 22 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is a wordle, the jumble of a word-prompt you see pictured at right. I managed to fit all of the vocabulary into this my strange attempt to commemorate Earth Day.

Trust of Trees

Spring's warming air gains
the trust of trees, emptying
their green-trimmed pockets

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Pass on, my imperfect

My meaning's gotten
garbled in a simulacrum of language
where d1g1t5 act
as harsh and angular interlopers,
bringing coined conversations
to a clanking halt.

Add to this the strange
ch@r@cter$, who've been irregular-
invited by secret-keepers
to play at masquerade
and waltz through endlessly
interchangeable interludes.

I pass on these words all-the-less
and expect they'll meet
equally imperfect listeners.

The Day 21 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is perfectly flawed, and my poem is about those pesky Internet passwords I'm constantly inventing with numbers and odd characters acting as my inadequate placeholders.

Garish Vampire

He paints ground-down teeth
garish shades. They can't bite sharp;
they shock with brightness

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

An Illiterate Criticism of Identity Politics

I, a hyphenated Italian,
will claim Shakespeare
descended the long
staircase, to write
our empiric wrongs.

It's all there in the plays,
if you've a keen enough eye
to catch these things,
and his name has cachet,
while mine needs
a laureled bling.

The Day 20 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is a hero poem. I took this in a slightly different direction than full-on idol worship, but I do have much fondness for the Bard. This is the second straight day with a Shakespeare reference, maybe that's because his birthday is coming up.

Snipe Gripes

Sniggering no more,
the snipe gripes of 'scaped earthworms
gratuitous grins

Monday, April 19, 2010

Getting to Shakespeare: A Theorem Meets Its Whimper

He doesn't have an infinite supply of monkeys.
In fact, he doesn't even have one.
Unless you count that stuffed toy on the dresser,
but it can't be expected to type,
not with those tin-cymbals glued to its paws.

Then there's the small matter of time,
which has always run out or been shut in,
at least over his lifetime of so-far off,
and he's not getting any younger,
so if it's gonna happen, it's gotta be now.

He bangs out a big-shot first word.
He thinks it's at random, but who can say for sure.
Galymbon? Maybe that's the name of a king;
it's certainly not one from Shakespeare.
His whimper isn't worthy of tragedy.

The Day 19 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is called light bulb moments. I don't know if this poem depicts a realization as much as a surrender.


Misers don't count on
depressions. When penniless,
they've nothing to pinch.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Easy Sits the Crown

Tucked-up tight
as a cotton ball
dappled with brown-black patches,
the part-calico queen,
presiding on a sofa-cushion throne,
surveys her square
and bounded realm.

The Day 18 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is called meow! and our task to lionize the feline. The poem is inspired by a friend's cat, Duchess, who I used to sit. Her regal bearing fit her name purrfectly.


Mars' rock-puckered face
is an indignant red farce,
blowing cross kisses

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Scaly breasts shudder with a gutter-gray cleaving.

She misses her breezy paramour's calming touch,
and their nostalgic days vent in pitched-white whispers.

If I could breathe back those mists, I might lessen her sorrow ...

Too-rigid muscles slide into aqua spasms.

She fidgets at the lack of fuss her fragments show,
and the brittle hours snap with metallic-blue cracks.

If I could massage those bursts, I might slacken her worry ...

A caustic blood simmers in vermilion bubbles.

She's whiling ways for the weak-spotted to crumble,
and languished minutes dissolve with yolk-yellow pops.

If I could stomach those boils, I might keep her from breaking.

The Day 17 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is called something elemental. I chose to write about earth, but I included some aspects of water, wind and fire as well.

False Prophets

Sugar-rich tongues preach
The necessary failures
of poor substitutes

Friday, April 16, 2010

Canvas and Rubber

Two loose yellow tongues flap me back
to that cul-de-sac of leather
balls bounced on a tarry hot blacktop.

The sweat came fast, our slapping palms
got slippery. We couldn't waste time
on excuses or fouls, just elbows

strategically placed, saggy smiles
and my canvas Chuck T's tearing
away from worn-down rubber soles.

The Day 16 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is called What's that smell? Through it we'll take an olfactory-based stroll down memory lane.


An idol's eyes strain
to find blood-stained scraps, inform
the worshipful wise

Thursday, April 15, 2010

White Lies

Ill my white lies lay
along black-truth's way,
attracting the stranded
eyes of idle watchers.

Dropped so indifferent
in hands that lead up
to one man's simp'ring god,
our antique worlds meet

and shake. His wired head
sits uncomfortably
near us, and spits words
by life left unspoken.

They feed the moon full
with dwindling day, to flesh
out love and make our steps
half-brothers, again.

It's Day 15 of NaPoWriMo, and the challenge is halfway to completion. Today's prompt from ReadWritePoem is called carrying a tune, that is to write a poem that's musical. I tried to give a sing-song feel to this piece. It's a type of "found poem" as I created it from a list of the most frequent words used in my poetry.


His hunger claims big
as proper's portion. Her smile
cedes him its poison.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

There and Here (a cleave poem)

there, come upon a greening once
in ticked and timely woulds
where all footed plantings have danced and swirled,
he takes a speculative girl
they tip-toe tentative steps of belonging
to meet, to part, join fingers and twirl
till they reach an inevitable verge
but with each successive passing
of the will to do and was not true
she grows fainter in his mirrored should and
their shy shadows wobble in recognition that
her hands can only feebly grasp at
what's lost is found, but never bound to
this fading pane of here

The Day 14 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is to write a cleave poem. This is a form created by Dr. Phuoc-Tan Diep, and the goal is to have two halves that can be read both separately and together. It proved both a challenge to write and to format.


"Your equipment lacks
the proper balance," she quips
mint leaf between teeth

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Poem Starting with a Line from Norman Dubie

The pearl slapdash of the moon is on the water.

It won't linger there long, so drink up and take back
your legs from wavering's pumpkin lip, before they slip
and are lost in a slurp of mucky goodbyes.

The ruby blush of the sun is on your shoulder.

It will fade with a mounting calm, unless you dive in
and cast off the dither of wormy squirm's pout.
Afterward we'll sip, now is the time for devout swims.

The Day 13 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is Smoke a Dubie. The challenge was to use a line from a poem by Norman Dubie to light the fire of inspiration. I used, "The pearl slapdash of the moon is on the water."


Slow slipping sand bribes
her, new bride to shallow vibes
only now matters

Monday, April 12, 2010


The testy toaster wheezes
a tart and frosty thrust,
"You sir can't taste
the sweet-meat of cause
if you won't stomach
its bland and crusty effect."

I'll come back to his riddle.
First, the percolator
keeps bubbling up
drips of bitter conversation
I've warned her nicely
to drop before.

The Day 12 NaPoWriMo prompt from ReadWritePoem is secret codes. I find my messages in a cramped kitchen.


Another earthquake.
Those moments she doesn't tremble
now come as a shock.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Bystander to a Bricking

You were always
a bit of backward
but your small, fuzzy grins
came cheap and easy.

We never guessed
they'd change the rules
so fast.

Salvation might have come
in coupon form,
and dolled-up pretty—
some say better than new—
we could have shared
old games, odd romance,
a few more laughs.

But I let that last chance slip,
and now a brick,
you're going gently onto
the back-alley rubbish
in the middle of the night.

On Day 11 of NaPoWriMo, the ReadWritePoem prompt is the thing you didn't choose. It's an apology to the analog TV I never allowed to go digital.


Ripple in a brown bag,
his saner days tumble
head-over-heel backward
before the tossed became...

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Cracking an Egg

What makes it
that perfect egg,
laying there, simply
narrow-turned nose
to broad-bend

What is it
this teardrop of smooth,
its quickening
shell not easily cracked
or taken
to a coating dye —
the slippery
dips in mocking pink,
acid-tongued blue,
and indigestible
pea green

I can't begin
to unlock that knowing,
and I'm not going
to swallow it

We're 10 days in and a third of the way home to the NaPoWriMo finish. Today's ReadWritePoem prompt is to celebrate. My most recent family-based celebration was a lovely Easter brunch at my sister's home. There's a peculiar little ritual we've practiced since we were kids, which involves a competition to see whose egg has the thickest shell. We tap them nose-to-nose and bottom-to-bottom until one emerges uncracked. After a champion is crowned, both losers and winners should be consumed with equal relish, but I've never liked hardboiled eggs. The tradition has been passed on to my nephews, so the cracking will continue at least one more generation.


Keep the flame level,
or it will singe. I'll take care
to stitch it tightly.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Sour milk

Merry is the marionette,
almost a miniature man, who finds
his wires new-severed do flap
where once strum-tight they dictated
the when to fall octopus-limp
or to dance a sprightly jig
accompanied by silly jug tunes
he never even liked.

Stringlessness comes at a price.
On disjointed steps, Merry
would he have to make his own way
as an unprovided walker.
He sets out, philosophical
tomes in hand, for the wooded
fringes where a brook gurgles
and he'll grapple with consequence.

"I have a goodly appetite,"
Merry remarks. "I'll attack
these meaty words with fork and knife."
But the ideas do stew
and uncomfortably stowed
between Being and Nothingness,
Merry wonders whether freedom is
not what he bargained for.

Just then he's startled by the tug
of wires gone taut, and caught up
by the dangle of an enormous
eagle, its talons eagerly
trying to untangle the strings
of a new play thing. Merry
might have wept, but who could cry
over the spilling of sour milk?

It's day 9 of NaPoWriMo and things are getting a little complicated. The ReadWritePoem prompt is a mission with a few tricky steps. Click the link to see the list of ingredients that went into this confection.

Thursday, April 08, 2010


I've a sui-generis tendency to ape
that sainted cat from Assisi who lends me
this moniker with mouth-confounding interests.

I cop ascetically tasteless means for living
and an auto-inflicting knack, but we part
weepy ways at the nobler wherefore of his arts.

He self-stigmatized for Faith, I stab at lesser
Love's tortured metaphors, and my plump palms bare
only the throb of a heart foolish for one once gripped.

Move on I must, wholly hand-in-hand with hag Hope
to cajole a jab by bumptious Charity,
touch of her tip flushing blues from my fleshy side.

It's day 8 of NaPoWriMo and love is on the agenda again. The ReadWritePoem prompt is unusual love connections. I started with a tortured metaphor, and then it got away from me.

Miserable Lark

Miserable lark,
mate-less trills dirges, then wings
off without a whim

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

He pleads

He pleads wicked wants
the willing locked in strong box
Love's a deaf-mute lass
She bites his shilling and mocks
glassy stares of disint'rest

Week one of NaPoWriMo concludes, as ReadWritePoem suggests love, funny side up. The task was to write a tanka on an amusing encounter. My personal experiences with romance don't lend themselves well to humor or poetry, so I went with a made-up bit of the twisted.


Misbegotten sprite
soured on woodlands, thumbs a ride
for cold and gritty

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Three lay stranded

These three lay stranded, spit back
black by a whipped and layered sea.
How now, if ever he was vengeful,
Jonah must joyless chuckle to see it

These three who lay stranded with toys,
littering the sand -- their phalli anchored,
oars stilled, and portholes spilling out
a last salty gasp to grasp it

These three who lay stranded, chasing
seamen with a frantic gaze, to fetch help
or seek simple solace from the monstrous
riddles staining their glassy eyes

These three who lay stranded, smitten
again by land long-ago left to reverse
evolution's tide. God can't undo
their nifty trick swift enough to save

These three who lay stranded and wait,
lonely for their brothers still headed to shore.

It's Day 6 of NaPoWriMo, and I'm still churning out the words. The prompt for today is to converse with images. I found the image above while looking up some information for another poem. It's a 1577 engraving entitled "Three Beached Whales" by the Dutch artist Jan Wierix.


As each noonday nears,
bedeviling with its heat and hunger,
Acedia sweetly abides to offer
the coolness of her shadow.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Filbert T. Gibbet

Your name is Filbert.
I'd rather use you as Fill.
Fill, gods may have put you here
for a victimless chatter,
but I'll bring you up
with the nonsense charge to meet
false expectations. I know
we don't see heart-to-heart, that
parting shouldn't stop us
from connecting the pesky
dots of our pupils. Let's learn
to be adult about this
uncontrolled glowing.
Your flighted fancies
can't leave the tarmac
without making one feel bold,
another frightened,
and everyone is a skosh
confused in the end.
I hope it doesn't bound
too negative. I meant well.

Day 5 of NaPoWriMo dawns, and I'm still up to the challenge. The prompt for today is to make your poetry personal. If I understood it correctly, that meant personifying my poetry.

Stormy Strum

Pointer and thumb stormily strum
backing his flammeous warble.
Terrified toes, fleshed thick and slow,
commence an arrhythmic flouncing.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

A Man, All Four Seasons

His spring was short, and he wore it
damp and dreary with query bulbs lightly
weaved in a soiled waistcoat. He will be
ready for summer.

His summer comes modest, not hot
enough for milking. Answers flower few,
so he dons a leaf-cushioned jacket
and waits for the fall.

His fall arrives late, too sweetly
burning assents of decay. Cracks branch thin,
and he slaps on a sappy topcoat,
with dread of winter.

His winter bustles with a bite,
but its nibbles and noms are blessedly
brief. He sighs, "It's a shame my seasons
can only be four."

This is Day 4 of NaPoWriMo. The prompt for today is to write an inside-out poem, taking the out-of-doors and bringing it in.


A dapper yellow man, he dances by
too careless with his caresses.

Tickled fields of flowering fancies
nip at rosy heels. Skipping west,

he doesn't notice.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Rainbow Abduction

There's a temperamental rainbow
he's seen, peeking out now and again, when
not shyly hid in cumulus cubbies.

He might, he can, win a sparkly trust,
luring it to him, between rainy bouts,
with promises of mood-altering

medication. Then, clapped with a lightning
clout, he'll stuff it in ten-gallon tubs
to struggle, bawl, and futilely fill

his deviant's plan. For in that muffle
of tinted pleas, its droppered breath will
condense against lids clamped-down tight,

and bottoms can collect sunny flavors
he needs to slather on the lolling
tongue of his too humdrum day-to-day.

This is the third day of NaPoWriMo. The prompt for today is to write about your fears. Well, who isn't afraid of rainbow abduction?


From winter's long roost
he's rousted, pulling up roots
spindly and thirsting

Friday, April 02, 2010

Repeated, I Worm

A decomposer
of brutish sins oft
repeated, I worm
past the pretty germs
shut tight in candied
shells, bursting to birth
untapped corruptions.
It's on the sawdust
dollops buried deep
I feed, biting bits
from soiled skins riddled
by regrets of not
offending good more.
Turning their oaken
flavors o'er gently,
my mouth will work them
down to a relish
of soft, black leavings.

This is my second NaPoWriMo contribution. The good folks at are providing prompts for the entire month. They suggested using an acronym, but I've always been more partial to anagrams. I fed "Read Write Poem" into my favorite online scrambler and found "Repeated, I Worm" to my liking.

Three Gory Bits of Holy Week

Three short poems, possibly sacrilegious, but inspired by Holy Week:

His vows don't just break.
They torment-tease, with the wait
of maundy kisses.

His faith is scratch deep,
not piercing. He'll take this nail,
etch coupled crosses.

His hammer flouts god
and grammar, punctuating
dull groans with sharp thwacks.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

An April Fool Ends Badly

In that age of aged seasons
predating our own's four-square rhyme,
a reasonable jape was hatched
beaked but hairy to a guilt-free Hen
whose humors ran with jaw-slackening
creatures, foul and not at all bird-like.

Soon after its mixed-up cracking,
two prattle-prone Wrens hopped to spread
rumors of an un-chickity chick
and the ungodly origins
of fatherless yowls. Their tittered jeers
found welcome ears, and Mother Hen preened
her babe chased by merciless guffaws.

This Hen was not one to lay
down meekly, and a never stony
tongue rolled out its antidote myth
to a pair of gabby Gulls: "My child
may look not-much, but he's divine
engendered and miraculous born.
Sure he's messy, ah, but you'll see
he'll grow to be, much-much-more than
any feathery tykes your like did bear."

She clucked it so seriously,
who were they to doubt her? The plumed
sniggering ceased. But before another
grateful day could dawn in a hallelujah
glare of right angles, out pecking
up a snack, Mother made eye
contact with an unfortunate Fate
brandishing his lucky-gripped ax.

What of her wonder-why, joke of a boy?
Left alone at straw-pocket home,
waiting for his Hen to return,
he starved then decayed to hollow bones,
and was never thought of again.

This is my first poem for National Poetry Writing Month. 29 more days to go...


Each year, he sows
barren lots with bits of spring,
assorted gears and gizmo slop.
Still, the earth won't yield
his robotic crops.