I shouldn’t have opened the door
(I decided I couldn’t take it anymore)
Shouldn’t have flung open my heart
(She said she would just come once more).
Left again, leaving me all ripped apart.
Not knowing the reason: a scrabbling on the roof?
I just had to go and see this storm’s proof,
Now gelled into rent and hidden autumnal leaves
Akin to slighted tricks up magicians’ sleeves.
No time like now, like the present, some day or this hour–
The gravity of the empty not knowing drags with such majestic power.
I shouldn’t have opened this, my old man’s prison door,
But creatures such as we must go out and must explore.
Thanksgiving Pumpkin Pie
A catastrophe of old goslings
Came sauntering on by
Hunting perhaps some pumpkin
Or, maybe yet, a little pecan pie
A horrendous howl of honking
Sliced thru the early morning’s fog
Perturbing the pigs and piglets
Of our farmers: Mr. and Mrs. B. Hogg
Seems our geese were quite giddy
Having been passed over for the block;
So, Thanksgiving would could be grand
For our fancy pastry-chasing flock
Peering perkily from yon copse,
Sally Gossamer Wingstep did risk a look
At the scene of gosling and farm
That rested askew beside the country brook
The winds nappered around from the North
Painting trees and cheeks in orange and red;
Our woodland fairie was on a mission
Having come in place of her ill cousin instead
Beyond the span of the Hoggs’ Farm
A fig tree grew splendid, round, and high
With just the right, rich and sweet fruit
To go in the Queen’s Holiday Figgerry Pie
Sally soared high up the loaded boughs
Selecting the most succulent figs to bag;
Thence to return to the Queen’s Kitchen—
Now weighed sore down, causing her flight to badly sag!
Overloaded Sally collapsed just past the copse;
The goslings saw, then quick-wobbled over to assist;
Flapping wings, cheery honking, and madness
Cut thru the thick new holiday’s swirling mist
Fairie and catastrophe arrived in a tumble;
Hooray, the figs to cook were delivered!
A freshened wind rolled thru the trees
Sending leaves reddening and beshivered
Sally asked how could she ever thank them
As they’d helped finish her mission on the fly—
And there on the morrow, our heroic of goslings
Munched on some of her Majesty’s Best Pumpkin Pie!
Happy Thanksgiving! Don’t forget to have some pie!
A Winter Southbound
The fallen leaves scattered across the tracks,
Southbound 53 would push these farther on.
A love that was empty as Ashland’s winter trees—
A hard weight was lifted now that she’d gone.
No tears, but also no joy, would be found here.
Yes, may the very best find its way over to her;
And should any good be left over hanging out
Perhaps might could entertain here along with Jack’s purr.
Santy Claus is due to arrive in a few days
And we’ve all tried to be and to do our best;
But sometimes it’s never close to good enough
And you cancel flights along with all the rest.
Maybe in the new year happiness real will come
And everyone can breathe and let it all just be;
Festivals and dances return for our lives renewed
And I can get back to that crescent bend in the Mississippi.
The southbound blew its horn passing thru Ashland town
And the online chatroom railfans counted up all the cars.
The empty trees shimmied in the rolling winter wind;
The resettled leaves looked up and counted up all the stars.
Sally Somewhat Lovely wondered why all the fuss
She had just been standing there awaiting the bus,
When Bob Horridman stumble stumbled across the street;
Bobby wan’t much to look at, but Sally, he wanted to meet.
Exchanged hellos and embarrassed burps and such,
The two wannaloves stood close but they didn’t touch;
Then Bob stepped off the curb to gather his thoughts
And a Chrysler mowed him down and connected the final dots—
Because inanimate objects always win over flesh and blood.
It dawned a rainy day, the sun came out, but ended with a thud.
Later on the Crosstown bus Sally Somewhat Lovely didn’t cry
She tried to remember his face, didn’t, couldn’t understand why;
She had just been waiting for her end-of-day bus ride home,
Now sitting seared with the image of flashing cloth, blood and chrome.
She looked out to see the leaves were all gone from the oak tree top,
Then the familiar called and she stood to say, “Okay, Driver, this is my stop.”