Poem: Whisper Horrors to Children

Most stories for children
are insanely cruel.
Filled with baby-eating witches,
and lawless fledglings flung
to the winds, we whisper our
reassurances that their worst
nightmares will never be real
so long as they trust us
unconditionally.

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Poem: A Paradoxical Epiphany

A lakeside photo was intentionally
displayed upside down,
and it took forever for
me to come to terms
with my feeling of
unreality.

The muted reflection
established my Truth
of the world at that
moment, while I
struggled to accept
the clear and sharp
presentation of
existence upside down.

I thought of the paradox,
momentarily,
and suddenly realized
what Plato must have meant.

Poem: A Peeved Pet

I don’t think she ever loved me.
We’d sleep together, but she
never touched me in bed.
If I tried to stroke her face,
she’d pull away in disgust
with a violent shake of contempt.
From time to time, she’d run
away but return in due time.
She didn’t seem interested in
anyone else, so we appeared
doomed to share grudging company.
Maybe she was happy cohabiting
in shared shelter with no feeling.
Maybe she really longed for love,
but dreamed only of joining
a tight pack of her own kind.

 

Poem: Ingress without Invitation

The bulwark is protection
from him, not for him.
He sidles along
the perimeter,
Touching the sides,
looking about furtively,
imagining tunnels and
catapults that could,
in another time and
circumstance, be his aids.

He’s come this far,
but in his old age
he has no choice
but to keep searching
for an opening,
for he’ll have no
ingress without invitation.

And at last, he finds
the wound in the wall,
slides through the
curtained entrance
and follows what appears
to be light.

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Poem: Where Authors Whine About The Poor Quality Of Their Readers

Nothing is explicit.
It’s all implication
and innuendo.
Layers of irony
lay waiting for
anyone willing to
claw their way
down to the core.

But these things
take time and
people read quickly.

So they just look up,
bemused, and ask,
“How is this even a poem?”

 

Poem: In Which Orgasms are Compared to Musical Elation

Sometimes when musicians finish
A piece that has gone well, they let out a
Combination sigh and laugh that
Expresses relief and pure joy.

It’s the same laugh you hear from
Women who have had a satisfying
Orgasm, enhanced by a slight tinge
Of guilt for being unduly blessed.

Of course, these laughs are never
Unwarranted. In both cases,
Substantial effort is required
To produce an even mediocre effect.

To achieve a crescendo of pleasure
Deserves a chuckle at least, but
Probably warrants a standing ovation.
And sometimes we do bask in the spotlight.

And bask we should, because we’ll soon
Be loading equipment back in the van
In a wet parking lot or shivering under the
Sheets, listening to neighbor dogs barking.

But, hey, tomorrow’s another day,
So we run through the scales, flirt
With the barista, steel our nerves,
And prepare to move heaven and earth.

person playing brown guitar
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Poem: Dominatrix, Doyenne, Shaman

She held fast to truth, this
Grim taskmaster, serving
Lashes to the mendacious,
And kisses to the veracious.

And all wanted to serve her,
Uncovering the wounds of
Brutal honesty, one kick to the
Crotch or messy cuddle at a time.

No one asks for enlightenment
In a Dungeon until the dominatrix
Shines through moral fog and
Removes both fear and reticence.

And secrets are sloughed off
As the previously damned
Rise shamelessly to a loving
Embrace they can’t refuse.

She’s crushed the ball gag
Under her heel so you can
Finally speak. So you can
Finally say your “peace.“

woman in black top standing beside wall
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Poem: Sulfurous Attacks on Blood-Sucking Arachnids

A sock of sulfur by the door,
And you better not ignore
It before going out in the woods,
Or it’s certain you would
Pick up hitchhikers in the form
Of ticks, chiggers, and no-see-ums.

It really made no difference,
You’d be facing weeks of itching,
And soaking in Calamine lotion,
Epsom salts, bleach, magic potions,
Or anything you could find
To soak in and hope to die.

Chiggers are the worst,
They’re a sentence or evil curse
From the God’s of wooded adventure
Or the demons of dark overtures.
Burrowed just under the softest skin,
Dissolving flesh and turning it to poison.

So, anyway, don’t forget the sulfur,
Before you go stomping through briars.
And be sure to take a shower when you get back
To wash off the ticks and prevent an allergy attack.
And when your done you better be sure,
To thank God for the blessings of nature.

male bugs illness disease
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Poem: Treks and Trysts

He couldn’t hear the word “hitchhiker”
Without also hearing John Fogerty
And the guilty sounds of the seventies.
And all that made him think of a tall
Girl with gray eyes who terrified him with
Her treks and trysts across the Rockies
And beyond on her own except
For her verve and bravado.

She wasn’t afraid of anything.
She took chances from Sherman to Denver
With no money and just one change of clothes.
Risky for a girl of 18, of course, but
God only knows what trouble she
Left in her wake, and he was
Enthralled, envious, and horrified,
But he listened to every word
She said on her return and became
Worldly through her words alone.

She told him the ways of the world,
And showed him the ways of a woman
With a condescending but caring grace
With only the slightest hint of cruelty.
She laughed at his naïveté, at first,
But gently removed it and did her best to leave
A campsite free from smoldering embers.

white long coat dog lying on highway
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Poem: In Unironic Praise of Older Women

I was lucky, he said.
A sexy baby sitter took
My virginity off me before
It became a burden.
I became a man before
I finished being a child.
I knew my way around,
Worldly in the ways of women,
But lost in the wild abandon of boys.

The others were filled with envy.
If only they had had a nanny
With a name like big, fat Fanny!
They could have walked the world
With pride, chest out and shoulders high.
They would have been the rivals of the others,
And the heartbreak of daughters and mothers.
They would have lived on the loose,
The Lucky Ones.

And our brown-eyed boy
Was proud of his conquests.
He was the real wild one—
Drunk and disordered—
The loner untethered to anyone.
Promiscuity is praised in a boy,
And a sad loner has a certain mystique.

He was lucky no one could ever
Tie him down, and he
Tied the knot in the noose himself.

rear view of a boy sitting on grassland
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