When all at once the world decides to fail,
on such and such a day, when pundits claim
to clearly see our leaders in the ooze
of mad careening chaos, and then rail,
without a single scrap or crumb of shame,
that all exclusive blame for the great ruse
lies with our high command, not you and I,
what prize can that debate’s proud winner claim?
When of our fictions we are disabused,
what does it matter which of the great lies
14 FEB 2017
From eyesight, there are half a dozen words
that represent a myriad of lies.
The surface, then, is never proof enough;
relying on appearance is absurd.
It puts us in a world of slick disguise,
transmitting second-hand its show and bluff.
There are no such illusions from the ear:
with sound, we gather in, and become wise.
Discerning what is real is never tough;
the undertone is always sharp and clear
03 MAY 2011
This morning, when I rose from bed, the street
was all abustle with the weekend’s chores.
Fresh coffee brewed, I filled my favorite mug
and sipping slowly, found the flavor sweet.
The cat was chasing lizards ’round the floor;
I shook my head and gave my wife a hug.
Outside, the sounds of lawn and garden tools
and stereos blended in a dull roar;
I shuffled, still half sleeping, ‘cross the rug,
whispered silent curses at these fools
10 APR 2004
If there exists a cause to take up arms,
while breath survives some live to find it just,
and seek to purify themselves in blood,
forsaking for the fray their fields and farms
to wage war on their brothers; for they must,
to raise themselves, throw others in the mud.
Then when their deeds of heroism fade,
and victory’s bread is devoured to crust,
when time has dried to dust the victor’s flood
of rhetoric, what’s left of the charade
19 MAY 2003
To be quoted by a thousand scholars,
used as a prop for some hopeless causes,
while earning enough to feed my old cat
bringing in those endless stipend dollars;
the rewards of my royalty clauses
helping me to grow sassy, sleek and fat,
outgrowing these cheap artistic collars –
the mind tends to boggle, as it pauses
to contemplate success so great as that.
And yet, I would rather be known as one,
who despite my many fatal flaws, is
trying to listen and join in the scat
of each new day and moment that’s begun,
20 MAY 2003