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One For Laura

C’mon let’s go
I’ve been waiting for hours
Time to conquer
All poetry’s towers

Open the doors
Let loose the knowledge
I gotta learn this stuff
If I wanna get into college

Dickinson and Eliot,
Starting with Gilgamesh,
But trust me, you’ll lose me
If you include ole John Tesh

So, let’s learn about rhyme
In all its naïf pentameter
Hey, this isn’t too bad
For an old rhyming amateur

A Safe Place

I’ve lost that place to let a tear;
My heart’s gone to its safe place.
How could things go so wrong?
What new horrors must we face?

Barricades fall from Seattle town,
But nothing’s better, not at all.
I’ve no stamp for my letter
Begging to be allowed to call.

Things today sing with a minor key,
But youngin there’s just one thing:
Passion stills, for just a moment, the longing—
Yet loneliness in old age still prides its sting.

Did she survive the novel virus?
Will she return to us fully alive?
Glasses for all to share the sauterne!
Breathe the air! Dance! Sing! Thrive!

I’ve lost the time to shed a tear,
My words go without a decent rhyme,
The End: how will we deeply know?
What new pain unfolds with wrinkled time?

Summer Fancy

Across the dank protean mire
On the slope of a mowed field
The breeze rumples a page over
And the lass missed the poets last verse
Bewitched by the youth’s jogging pace passing by
She dared imagine his arms about hers
And pondered about passion’s cruel curse

The sudden rain scampered our lass
While the boy turned north and to dorm
The promise of Summer freshened newly
Like Latin winds bringing Mercury back to Rome
And a new Arachnida’s web is woven
Life and Death never pause nor long tarry
A half Moon finds the eve’s far horizon
Rooms aren’t the only thing empty back home

Shy winking stars spangle up
To make smart the Southern sky
Lass and lad miles apart wash dishes done
Neither knowing the others’ longing heart
Many mini plans made for reading nooks
A mighty edifice rises in the Tangipahoa
A counselor and her crook’s getaway suite
In a half-told love tale just at the start

Author Of Quaint Cuteness

So he found his way into the next street bar—
So too many sunsets he’d watched on his own.
He spied an open seat next to suspicion;
He sat: the leatherette surrendered with a groan.
He’d read that other’s fine published work—
Smaller now, he slow-ordered a few subsequent reds;
An author of quaint cuteness in a virtual realm in rhyme;
The rest of his well-bought confidence littered in shreds.
Darkly he found finally his Feng shui front door;
Next time he promised himself to leave on the light.
What’s that cold tightness crawling up his arm?
Her glam memory long ago dimmed from all sight.
Jack meowed hard, his breakfast was kinda late—
The neighbor poured the proper measured morsels into the bowl.
Calls were made, tears will come later, most real, certainly—
The author of quaint cuteness in his virtual realm of howl.

Poet’s Last Word

Oh, where in the world can your poet run
When the words fall flat, and the rhymes won’t come?
Oh, what hard trials arise to squash younglet poetry,
Like a weeded up, oak-wilt, unlovely and broken tree?
No thesaurus, no dictionary, nor dog-paged Bartlett’s
Can save a poor rhymester when the scansion he forgets.
Arched over his blank page, a pen rusting in his hand,
He remembers clever phrasing that once lofted grand.
But today, too many hours passed, when imagery faded away:
No paragraphs soar to shine, no dark truths for a heart to sway.
Just letters on a keyboard accompany the page gleaming white—
Is it old age, or a brain cancer, or Alzheimer’s that’s blanked his inner sight?
Swirling leaves, the pelting rain; no, just tears to wet another empty page.
Crashing thunder, volcanic explosions; no, just writer’s blocked impotent rage.
Was all this alleged talent just Life’s joke on the unwittingly absurd?
What do you say to the one who cannot find the poet’s last word?

Proceeding

It was two glasses in
And the curling memory of brunette hair,
But she has erewhile gone
And Sonoma Merlot just doesn’t care.
The rhymes won’t come—
Here I am inside this couplet mess.
I guess it takes more than mere Love
To complete this synapsing poetic process.
Meld two roughs into one,
Balance the scan and mind the rhyme,
Maybe I’ll get some ‘Likes’;
I manage to do so from time to time.
Fear floods in;
I managed to lose my job.
Now with gray hairs and beard
Who now would care to hobnob.
Today next-door neighbor
Pleasantly responded to my hi and hello.
There’s no ‘there’ there
And it’s so past time for me to go.
Brother turned sixty—
Who knows about sixty-one.
Wish we were better friends;
A brother would be nice on this long end run.
We need a finishing couplet to release our tortured reader;
It’s all good, love from your poet, another forgotten bottom feeder.

Who’s That Old Man?

Looking at Sixty-two
Right in the face
Reminds me that soon
I gotta get out of this place
Back to the Crescent City
To ride a streetcar or two
Hang with my brother apes
Pay full cover at Audubon Zoo

Looking at Sixty-two
Who’s that old man?
Gotta dance some Cajun
Just as soon as I can
Meet John at Da Leaf
Then relax with David at the Columns
Then real beau coups soon
I can let go all these little problems

Looking at Sixty-two
Born in the magic year 1955
Wanna prove them all wrong
And gonna get out of here alive
Just one more beignet
And/or a Merlot-filled glass or two
Then it won’t be all that special
That tomorrow I turn sixty-two

Number 62 In Blue

The candle sputtered
Then guttered out
The wick a speck in the wax
The old poet looked
And suffered to stand up
The last present wrapped was Jack’s

A fresh Christmas candle
Striped Santa red and holly green
With its new flame warmed the room
Placing presents about
A tree to shame Charlie Brown
The shards of wrapping left with the broom

The cat’s tail flicked serene
The poet reached for his quill
As words soft filled a new page
A chance Winter memory
Spurred the poet on
Thoughts neither steep nor very sage

She bought him skis for a gift
Though “cross” country would mean something else
Tears of laughter with every tumble and spill
He wondered where she was now
A score of years have long passed
When meeting on Concourse B was such the piquant thrill

Chinese Five Spices
Floated upon the solemn merlot
The poet paused to let the tightness pass
Tomorrow the two-state drive
Back to his beloved Crescent City
Though this year without his own wee lass

Daughter would be skiing
Off out with her Mother and half family
Cross country over in the mountain West
He’d be with swiftly aging brother
And a Christmas with the family Creole
But things always work out for the best

A meow and a sigh
The poet let Jack out the door
A cat in search of secret nocturnal meetings
The candle blew out neat
The cold front had as promised arrived
As the rain pelted out its Season’s Greetings

Waxing and waning here came Christmas Number Sixty-two
But he yet looked ahead brightly through this Yuletide in Blue

A November To Keebler

18 more days of insanity
Who you gonna vote for?
I’d rather wash my dishes
Then head to any polling door

Maybe write bad poetry
Or paint those shuttered shelves
Who is going to be president?
I’d rather the Keebler elves!

What would be their policy
For thieves and foul mouths?
Whither goest medical or tax policy?
Is the border secure in the souths?

ISIS or ISIL shrinks out in the Middle East
Somehow I think that’s our problem least

Am I Close

I would like to be a poet
Am I getting close?
Metaphors mixed and tenses slashed
Imagery by a nose
Broken hearts and thanes slain
Damsels worshipped ever again and again
Perhaps a cheery rhymester
Bereft of similes orange
Sunsets abandoned
By courageous estrange
Does my poesy suffer to suffice?
Are you moved to a nether coast?
Or do you need more fodder
To render the lonely heart closed
Pay for my lines
Don’t you dare wonder?
Most of the good stuff
Passes thru the penchant blunder
Like me stuff—
Or turn to a kindred page
Drinking the lines ethereal
Is all the millennial rage