When You’re Not There

Poetry Challenge Day 362 (Wednesday, October 5)

It’s one thing to wake up
every morning beside you,
quite another to find you not there.
Without you there I find myself
wondering what life would be like without you.
It’s not a pleasant thought.
I’m better and happier
when you’re there.

Please note I spelled “your” with an apostrophy.


Poetry Challenge Day 361 (Tuesday, October 4)

Don’t vote for a candidate because
they tell you their opponent is bad.
Don’t vote out of fear.
Vote for a candidate that will
improve your life.
If you’re already happy with your life
vote for a candidate that will improve the lives
of people less fortunate than you.
If a candidate can’t tell you what they
will do to make your life better once elected,
your vote are doing more harm than good.

The Oncely Alligator

Poetry Challenge Day 360 (Monday, October 3)

Perhaps all this poetry nonsense
stems from my childhood.
To get me out of the house
my parents enrolled me in a
summer writing program.
I remember our class titled
our composite summer’s work,
The Oncely Alligator.
I wish I could remember who
came up with that title.

Famous People

Poetry Challenge Day 359 (Sunday, October 2)

I know a guy that threw a pumpkin
off the top of an FAA Control Tower.
He traded his pumpkin tossing skills in
and become a commercial airline pilot.

I know a guy that was the first to ski
a snow covered volcano
in the Aleutian Islands.
He never got credit for it.

I know a woman
with exceptional English Language skills.
she spends her time correcting my grammar.
I love her for it.


Poetry Challenge Day 358 (Saturday, October 1)

I would love to just sit down
and write a poem
but of course it doesn’t work that way.
I really don’t have a clue
where they come from.
This is probably a good example
of what happens when
the answer to that question is unclear.

What If

Poetry Challenge Day 357 (Fri Sep 30)

What if you got tired of me
and decided to live without me.
Of course you can,
any time you like…
I hope you don’t.

The Window

Poetry Challenge Day 356 (Thu Sep 29)

I stare out the window,
the wind is blowing
what is that…
A car goes by.
I don’t know where I would go
if I were in it.
I suppose that all depends
on who I am with.
If you were with me
I would take you to Marfa Texas.
It’s the coolest town in the Lone Star State,
cooler than Austin.
I’ll go back someday
and I’ll take you with me.


Poetry Challenge Day 355 (Wed Sep 28)

It seems we have lost our ability
to laugh at ourselves,
perhaps even listen to one another.
So much anger.
Where does it come from?
It comes from our words.
If we speak mean words
we will find ourselves
being mean.


Poetry Challenge Day 354 (Tue Sep 27)

Where did numbers come from?
It’s hard to imagine
humans could come up
with something so beautiful
just by staring at their toes.

You And The Cat

Poetry Challenge Day 353 (Mon Sep 26)

I miss you and the cat.
I’ll survive.
When I see both of you next
I’ll be better,
As long as you both remember me…

A Small Crisis

Poetry Challenge Day 352 (Sun Sep 25)

I read a poem today.
I saw it in a magazine.
Apparently the poet is accomplished.
I have no idea what
he was trying to tell me.
I guess I shouldn’t write poetry
if I don’t understand what
real poets are trying to tell me…
I would like to know
what feeling he wanted me to have.
That said,
I actually liked it,
but it pisses me off.
Why can’t he just tell me
what he wants me to feel?
After a year of trying to write poetry,
I am no closer to understanding what poetry is
than I was before I started…
Perhaps that is not surprising,
perhaps that is the point of all this.


Poetry Challenge Day 351 (Sat Sep 24)

Just as hunting
brutalizes the hunter,
the use of demeaning speech
demeans the speaker.


Poetry Challenge Day 354 (Fri Sep 23)

I’m tired of
dirty politics.
I want to go back to the days of
dirty policy.

The Supreme Court

Poetry Challenge Day 353 (Thu Sep 2)

At a bus stop near my home
Some graffiti caught my eye…
“Abort the Court.”
Who can really disagree with that?
Oh, I suppose if you have assumed
the role of preventing people you don’t know
from going to hell…
(Good for you, that is your prerogative)
but realize, it’s not your job
to take away someone’s freedom,
even if you think you are doing them
an “eternal favor” (your not).
Taking away someone’s freedom
will only send you to that place you abhor…
Think about it…
State mandated maternity is nothing more than State sanctioned rape.
Think about it…
If you support abortion bans,
you’re not only taking away someone’s freedom
for which you will be damned…
but you have also made yourself a rapist.

Escatalogical bullshit added to this poem for emphasis…

Words To Live By

Poetry Challenge Day 352 (Wed Sep 21)

I have spent almost this entire last year attempting to write poetry that is original to me and at least, to the degree that I am able to do so, interesting to perhaps one or two other people. Buried deep in this motivation that spurs me, is the desire to reach some truth, some lasting vision of the world that will motivate me, and sustain my actions at least throughout the rest of my life. (I don’t pretend to speak for the beyond, I don’t really believe there is any real benefit to the here-and-now in doing so.) That said, I stumbled upon these words by Walt Whitman that spoke to me deeply. I was so moved I felt compelled to share them. Not only because they inspire me, but because I think they are worth sharing, and perhaps, just perhaps, you might also find them inspirational and even guiding in some small way. I promise this will be the only time (at least until this project is finished) that I quote from someone else. As you may have already surmised, I wish I had penned these words, but then, that is a bit unrealistic, I’m no Walt Whitman…

“This is what you shall do.
Love the earth and the sun and the animals.
Despise riches.
Give alms to everyone that asks.
Stand up for the stupid and crazy.
Devote your income and labor to others,
hate tyrants,
have patience and indulgence toward people,
take off your hat to nothing known or unknown,
or to any man or any number of men,
go freely with powerful uneducated persons
and the young and with the mothers of families…”

I took some liberty in formatting the quote in order to present the ideas more visually and thus (I hope) more clearly.


Poetry Challenge Day 351 (Tue Sep 20)

There is no “correct” way to write poetry.
There is however an incorrect way,
and that is to not do it at all.

A good thought to keep in mind.

Remember, as you proceed through life,
experiences are only failures
if they are never attempted.

Fear And Power

Poetry Challenge Day 350 (Mon Sep 19)

Why do I not hear the phrase
“Hitler 2.0” echoing from the roof tops?
Why is it not obvious to everyone that’s what we are dealing with?

I’m not a smart person
and I can see it.
Why are so many, so blind to this?

I suspect that fear trumps consequences.
My apologies for using that particular homonym to describe
such a serious matter.

The “homonym” referenced here is a master a ginning up fear in less thoughtful people.

Old Age

Poetry Challenge Day 349 (Sun Sep 18)

You know your getting old
and reminiscing about
your child-rearing years
when you talk about
“changing the diaper”
on the coffee machine.

The technology that produced my coffee machine is realatively new… I’m a sucker for new shit.

True Inner Peace

Poetry Challenge Day 348 (Sat Sep 17)

True inner peace
comes from the nature of our thoughts
rather than the beauty of our surroundings.
If you choose to surround yourself with beauty
(and of course you should)
you must do so for it’s own sake,
not as an escape.
If you treat your surroundings this way
you will rewarded more fully.

Prose Poetry

Poetry Challenge Day 347 (Fri Sep 16)

I guess that’s what you have to call this.
Our River Guide read us a poem
as we waited for the Helo to evacuate
two of our party.
(That’s another story.)
The poem was “The Ballad of Belle Zabor.”
The poem goes on for pages and pages
(the Helo was delayed).
Four lines per stanza
rhyming in alternate lines,
first and third, second and fourth, like so:

“Far beneath the rim of this canyon grim
Speeds a river wrought with woes.
And the shadows are deep, and the light is dim
Where the wild water froths and flows.”

…No thank you,
not my cup of tea,
just the thought makes me blue,
way beyond my capacity.

I’ll stick with my non-rhyming, odd sounding words
that pass (at least in my own mind) as poetry.

Good Writing

Poetry Challenge Day 346 (Thu Sep 15)

Good writing is something I aspire to
but may never achieve.
Instead, I’m going to settle for good handwriting.

I was recently told I have that.
A server in a bar last week,
looking over my shoulder, told me as much.

I’m glad she took the time comment.
I hope she wasn’t expecting to find
Edward Abbey like prose.


Poetry Challenge Day 345 (Wed Sep 14)

I don’t like lists.
They make me look back
instead of look forward.


Poetry Challenge Day 344 (Tue Sep 13)

The quality of our life
Is determined by
The quality of our value judgements.


Poetry Challenge Day 343 (Mon Sep 12)

There is always love.
Give it, do not withhold it.
You may not see the benefit,
but someone will receive the benefit.
That will make the world a better place.


Poetry Challenge Day 342 (Sun Sep 11)

Why is it some humans desire power
over their fellow humans?

Why is it some humans desire to simply
live in harmony with nature?

Which view is correct, why can we not agree?

I want to leave the world
a better place for my children.

I don’t think I’m going to be able
to claim that as an accomplishment.