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Ernest’s Poem

Sometimes you don’t write but read
and talk especially with friends
but occasionally with others
to see the sharpness of speech
flung at high speed to hit hard
the fatty wattled throats of the
overly stuffed and effete.

The morning after you arise
feeling a strange hangover
look in the mirror and touch
your now tender throat then
clear the day to write to better
become the mensch you are.

 

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Poet’s Notes:

No draft image for this available at the moment; it may be uploaded later.

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

The Church*

 
She is hideous at times and
it’s not merely opinion; her
history tells of red hats sold
families sired in secret and
brave souls condemned to delight
adoring masses because they
did not believe as she believed.

Il Duce plied her open for his sick
pleasure as have too many priests
who swore exactly the opposite.
Despite the predations of men
over ten thousand generations,
I love her still. And I’ll be damned
if I can ever explain it.

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Poet’s Notes:

* The unflattering statements are well documented by numerous reliable sources. (Not “Fake News”.) Apologies to those offended. My purpose is not to offend but to speak candidly in a creative fashion. Feel free to click “Reply” and send me your feedback.

No draft image for this available at the moment; it may be uploaded later.

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

 

On the Boardwalk

My daughter begged for cotton
candy so I listed the various ills
and getting it stuck in your hair
but she would have none of it
because all of my friends…

You must be out of your cotton-
picking mind 
I said as I passed
a black woman holding a child
by the hand who held the treat
above its much smaller head

And I looked back wondering
if I had offended her; I heard
now don’t pay any mind to
such foolishness;
but it may
very well have been me.

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Poet’s Notes:
No draft image for this available at the moment; it may be uploaded later.

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

The Slowpoke

Der emes iz a kricher.
The truth is a slowpoke.
– Yiddish saying

The truth when not drunk
(availing a legitimate excuse)
is a tardy bastard. He saunters
out the door in the morning pulling
himself together as he slopes
to touch strangers in passing;
shambling by unnoticed
at the station as they pause
to reflect and ignite their
numinous epiphanies.

 

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Poet’s Notes:
No draft image for this available at the moment; it may be uploaded later.

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

 

Two Working Women

(for Louis and Steve)

Now that offices are verboten
the woman who sits with her
back to the break room browses
panties and boots but quickly
clicks away when the two men
alight to smile and stroke.

Beside her the executive
holds endless phone meetings
tossing acronyms like grenades
shattering the sixty foot space
with New Jersey diphthongs.
It’s important that those passing
through know she is who she is
despite the absence of the plaque
or the presence of the sphinx
sitting quietly beside her.
 

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Poet’s Notes:
No draft image for this available at the moment; it may be uploaded later.

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

Shakshuka at Mimi’s

You can eat Shakshuka
at breakfast for its eggs
or lunch for tomato stew
and dinner for all of it
and nobody will care.

Nobody will tell you
you’re silly for eating
that at dinner or so early
because it can be eaten
any damn time of the day.

So eat your Shakshuka
and don’t ask whether
it would be better earlier
or later because it’s just
perfect as it is. Dammit.

* A restaurant in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn with the BEST Shakshuka (Middle Eastern dish).

The Life Sentence

In the waiting room the man
nearly whizzed in his pants
waiting for “x months” to live.

The doctor arrived to nod
clear his throat and pull a
screeching chair to a halt.

You have the most peculiar
disorder ever found. In fact
incidents are most rare.

You are in amazingly good
health and we fully expect
you to live well for decades.

Decades beyond normal
human life expectancy.
What a fortunate man!

The man then began to
tremble and cry. The doctor
asked him what was wrong.

So what am I to do with all
the time? Already I don’t know
what to do with myself.

The doctor assured him he
could do just about anything
for the next thirty years at least.

The man remained distraught
so before he left he received
a bottle of anti-depressants.

He limped past those waiting to
come in who only became more
anxious to hear the bad news.

 

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Poet’s Notes:

Written recently, but the draft has not been located (it’s in my place somewhere).

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

Nancy Blue

Her eyes are shades
for the blue in her mind
(of a light crystal hue)
shaping, sharpening.

Not the blue you find
in a pool disinfected
or blue overwhelmed
by an ocean’s depths.

Her mind swims in blue
that clarifies, enhances
and never just reduces.
It is a blue undiluted.

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Poet’s Notes:

Written recently, but the draft has not been located (it’s in my place somewhere).

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

 

 

Writing Poetry

It is madness if you think of it
to sit and let in swirling
tidal waters held suspended
by some invisible wall and
loosened so the whole discarded
mess old sneakers and needles
and building materials and love
and suicide notes rushes in
so that if you’re lucky or
both fortunate and blessed
to end up on your ass
you find things poking out
of every pocket that make
mysterious claims.

NOTE: Revised on 1/15/2017

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PREVIOUS VERSION:

It is madness when you think of it.
To sit and let it all in. The rushing
tidal waters held suspended by
some invisible fence and let loose
so the whole discarded mess
old sneakers and needles and
building materials and love
and suicide notes (that you
never recognize as your own)
blasts in so that if you’re lucky
or perhaps both fortunate and
blessed to end up on your ass
you find things emerge from
every pocket that offer
themselves as gifts never
to be rightly requited.

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Poet’s Notes:

Written recently, but the draft has not been located (it’s in my place somewhere).

If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

Memory of the Whip

It recalls backs and buttocks
and its lines mark generations
settling into an open palm
or closed fist or even a pistol
fired by one who never felt it.

The scars of the whip begin
in the flesh but seep into sleep
into nightmares that can sprout
legs to stalk the day-lit streets
because the whip cannot forget.

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Poet’s Notes: The original draft of the poem is below. If you feel strongly about this poem, leave a comment (further) below.

 

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