Monday, September 22, 2014

I Should Be Writing

No more excuses now remain, and yet
I have yet to take up that which I've longed
To do in earnest. Failure seems to get
The best of me ere I've begun. I'm wronged
In this by no one but myself. I'm mocked
Not by the blank page or the new-filled pen,
But by old habits of belief and thought
(The former more like disbelief; I've been
My nemesis for too long, know the tricks
Best played to thwart me -- when to mimic fear,
And when to use plain loathing so it sticks
There in the mind, so each and ev'ry year
It's harder to get started). How to silence these
But not the needed voices? Tell me, please.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Scotland: In Which It Needn't be the End

O Scotland, none can say ye dinna try
(And here I cease to try in dialect
Lest I err and offend). I know that I
Was thrilled to see your efforts -- so correct
And civil, as the Scottish way should be.
It's hard to leave a nest, and in these days
Of bigger seeming better, hard to see
How paring down might strengthen someone's plays,
So I suppose at any rate. All change
Is somewhat scary. Think on it some more,
However. While to old folk this seemed strange,
Your younger set, as stubborn to the core
Chose independence. They might get their way
In future. You might yet win free someday.

Monday, September 15, 2014

In Which is Had a Late Night Fright, but By Whom?

Unable once again to sleep, I sought
Relief in waters hot, of sulfur'rous smell.
Outside my door was waiting what, I thought,
Some kind of prank contraption. "What the hell?"
A radio antenna? Sculpture fail?
In silence, into darkness I stepped t'ward
The mystery. And then it moved! My flail
Of startlement near hit it. Almost gored
Upon a mighty antler, I withdrew,
Then, panting, frightened by a five-point buck
(That's on each antler; it's the West here). "Shoo!"
I said to him. I don't know why. As luck
Would have it, deer spaghetti was my lunch.
Was this revenge? I'd entertain that hunch.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Kirsten, Kirsten, Rest in Crazy Ass Enthusiasm

A crazy-ass Zen saint, I watched in awe
As we grew up together. Nothing stopped
Her having fun. I never, ever saw
A person so alive. Oft my jaw dropped
To witness such enthusiasm. There
Has never been her like. My fortune's great
To have had her example and to share
Times good and less so with her. And now fate
Has, cruel, decreed that we have had enough?
"Screw that," Kirsten would say, and I agree.
In memory of her, I'll make neat stuff
And do amusing things, will try to be
A bit more like her. And sit in my dress
As she did, now and then. It was the best!

Friday, August 22, 2014

In Memoriam: PG Holyfield

For nifty hats alone, he'd have my love,
But Patrick had so much more going on
A sonnet cannot tell it all. Speak of
A microphone and what just might upon
So small a thing be done, and there's a clue
Of what might lie beyond the wall. O friend,
A toast in some Tuaca, just for you,
The author of the Stanmageddon. Ends
Do pain so, but my tears are happy, for
I got to know you, if but slightly. In
Your honor do I make this pledge: no more
Will I let Balticons pass by. It 'tis a sin
To take for granted awesome gifts. I will
Give up no more my chances, love you still.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

A Rainy Night at the Hobo Pool

Steam rises, bubbles too, as soil and sky
Decide to bathe together in the rain
As darkness falls. I soak, relax and sigh
And let the heat and water take my pain.
It all dissolves away. And now the light
Which dances, stately, each eve on the pool
Performs a frantic foxtrot in the night,
Bestirred by slashing raindrops. I, a fool,
Who, dazzled by the fireworks that burst
As ev'ry drop disturbs the liquid sheen,
Thinks, of all who have seen this, I'm the first
To notice this. I weep to leave this scene.
Already, though, my ripples have died out,
Lost to the frenzied water's silent shout.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

No Town for Young Men -- Except in May

The river's course is slower in its banks,
From which it nearly overspilled; its roar
Resounding in our fears summoned the ranks
Of Guardsmen, football players... Days of yore
Saw us defend ourselves from waters' rage.
But now, enfeebled, we gladly depend
On others' youth and strength, and blame our age
For what our dollars cannot do. We send
The young to fight our battles ev'rywhere.
We did it once; it's your turn now, we say
To no one (for there is nobody there;
Our monoculture's drowned us out). Today
The sandbags block our views, but we just wait
To pay someone to take them, soon or late.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

For Megan James, As She Recovers

I am in awe; your ACL's been torn
For going on, I'm told, a good three years,
And you've been running on that. Don't they warn
Against these things in school these days? But cheers:
At last it is un-shredded. So now, BOOM!
The rest now should be cake. I say should be...
But something tells me you'll be in the room
We call our store too soon, that we shall see
You back behind your desk before you ought:
Unstoppable's the girl who runs on joints
Like yours have been. Before long you'll be caught
Within the rush again. Recall these points
However: rest is good. Take time for you
And be a bum a while, an hour or two.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Alcohol, Schmalcohol, I Know How To Soak

The Hobo Pool at night, beneath the stars
Is best of all the places that I know.
Let others go get lit in groups, in bars.
Hot springs impart a solitary glow
To those who choose to pass time there instead.
No cares survive the heat, no aches the balm.
A soak a day, not long before the head
Meets pillows, leads one naturally to calm.
Long after algae's scrubbed from off the skin
And sulfur smells are washed out of the hair,
One's grasp on stress is tenuous and thin.
Why clutch at it? Why should one cling to care?
A wine or whiskey's fine for now and then
But daily? Best remember where I've been.

Monday, January 27, 2014

For @RodneyAnon, With My Sympathies

I pick up my remote and softly click.
It's Robin Hood, and it's not Men in Tights.
I pause and briefly let myself feel sick
And click again. The wolves are dancing. Nights
Like this create despair. I try once more
The dreams that may come to this field, nightmares!
The Postman almost evens up the score,
But no. And Waterworld? Nobody cares
That I need some distraction here, I see.
No bodyguards, no goddamn baseball, stop!
My heart's untouchable, but, woe is me
My brain is vuln'rable to ev'ry flop.
O Costner, you must answer for these crimes
Here or in Hell. Bring on, please, the End Times!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

My Collie, My Folly

My darling and my dearest fuzzy friend,
Is leaving me. This afternoon I'll say
Good bye. The very best of times still end
But it's unfair that this one ends this way.
Why did you, Molly, have to get so old
At such a faster rate than I? Why do
You have to go? I know, I know, I've told
Myself that now's the time to say thank you
For all the years of love and laughs, to see
How fortunate I've been to have along
This bit of journey, gently herding me,
A dog like you. I still think this is wrong,
This time, this situation, and I weep
And cannot even find there's peace in sleep.

Monday, July 8, 2013


Oh god, I've seen inside, and it looks like
A set of wires and rubber bands and cogs
All gone askew, hooked up to it a mic
That amplifies the squeaks and squeals along
The length of you. I woke up in a book
Of Phil K Dick's, and now I can't unsee
What I took in behind your bug-eyed look,
And now I wonder if the same, in me,
Is what you've noticed. Were we both replaced
With broken down machines? Was tenderness
Illusory, a program badly traced
Into our circuitry until, I guess
It failed? Debugging skipped, we've gone straight to
The gubbish phase. Yet still I've love for you.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Did That Really Just Happen? I Guess It Did

So this is it. The band-aid has come off.
I'm glad I yanked it quickly. So at last
Our wounds get air to heal. I used to scoff
At those who valued closure, but, outclassed
By cold reality, I now admit
The error. We were fools, perhaps, to try,
Two freaks like us, to think that we could fit
Into a normal love. My eyes are dry,
But only from the sudden shock, too fresh
To even feel it. What shall I do now?
Myself and sleep, for it is late, won't mesh;
You're not beside me. Dull, I wonder how
This ever, ever seemed a good idea.
My sweet, I love you still, but let it be.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Lines Written On Receiving An Unexpected Gift

My roots are deep and strong, and now they're knit
Into a shawl, with prayers that I'll be well.
The purple yarn, with silver, is a fit
For all that regal heritage I tell
Those disbelieving others, who still say
A small town offers little. We who've known
The life, know better, know the finest way
Through sorrow and through pain is to have grown
Together in community with such
As those who made this gift for me. My tears,
I do assure you, are not sad. Too much
Emotion just leaks from my eyes, all fears
And hopes and love and gratitude combine
Whenever I wrap in this shawl of mine.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

In Which Is Considered Evil Dead 2013

An Evil Dead film done with a straight face,
In which the taxidermy never sings,
In which the slapstick's gone without a trace,
Might seem to be the silliest of things,
Yet earnest works when this much care is spent
On camera work, on angles, and on shots
That make each face strange ere malevolent
And gruesome art's applied. So there is lots
To recommend this movie. There is gore
Aplenty, speedy evil zooms, and all
That we expect, yes, that, and then much more:
This film is art! Yet funny, too. I'd call
It Evil Dead 3 -- Not Just a Remake.
Worth all the time and money that's at stake.