Alphabetical Page Poem Index (+ Five Star Rating)
God decided to punish a Welshman.
So doing a repeat of the old Jonah story, he put him inside the dark and gloomy belly of a whale.
After a while God noticed that the Welshman was singing like a lark, and looking very happy.
So God asked: “Don't you understand? I put you inside a whale to punish you.”
The Welshman replied: “God. Don't you know? Everyone likes to sing in Wales.”
The Oracle of 500
Around the board room table,
The Harvard mafia have many colors
Coffee, black, yellow and pink
They carefully reveal the year in which they graduated
Exposing their agendas.
Pizza boxes, dwarf Evian bottles and red Coke cans
Lie scattered across the table.
Pages of old programming
Are brought into service as plates
With the odd Palm Pilot for note taking.
Forks are abandoned for fingers.
The English major
Former lumberjack and farmer
Explains his philosophy
Comfortable with the popularity
That half a billion brings.
About past exuberance
There is enough success
Probing reveals no jobs
Available for the pink, yellow, black and coffeed.
We leave on a hint of a possible career change
To a more popular portfolio;
And renewal of bonds
Among those fresh issued
Descending in the elevator.
The Oracle stands tall
They paid money to hear him speak.
His wife would never believe.
I Hate Carl
Carl has only one advantage
His lines are short
The Mexican or Indian.
Flaccid chicken without texture.
Steak sandwich with elastic fat
Cheese and mayonnaise on everything
Unless you ask.
And senseless bacon limp and tasteless draped across the so called protein
Fountain software drinks
Lack the sparkle of a can
French Fries leave a greasy unsatisfying stain on your psyche.
But even worse
All the purveyors of higher saturated fat
Have shorter lines
For shorter lives.
The only solution is to travel further
To eat more slowly
Find early parking
At the Chinese or Japanese down the street.
For the Mexican is trumpet shrill with loudspeakers
Announcing the arrival of numbered assembled food
Deafening patron tongues, making ears noisy.
And, the Indian looks so lumpensoggy.
Owed To A Spreadsheet: Spread the Sheets For Love
Many years ago
My first Macintosh
The one with one hundred and twenty eight K
And no hard drive
Was a joy to us both.
I have to give you credit.
It was your move.
You always remember your first.
The one I fell in love with
Even though it was a buggy beta
Others look like aspirin
Nothing else matters
Except continuing the building
Continuing the building
Until you get it right
Which you never do
Until enormous crises drives you away from
Drug departure, great regret.
Others can't appreciate your love for
They just weren't there
They did not build
They did not care for
You don't want to share
All they'll do is mess up
A Greek once said
You cannot step in the same spreadsheet twice
He was wrong
He did not spread the sheets for love
Nor admit mistakes
And back up.
I Did Not Know I Was a Witch
I have a theory
If you aim for the next slot over
Turn back towards your slot
You rarely hit the pillar
And the act is graceful.
About to back up
A Land Rover roared behind me
A second away from
More than a kiss from my bumper
My adrenaline stomped over
To point out the error of his way.
In a hurry,
He said he had not been going as fast
As I said
I thought about dire predictions
Incantations and protestations
What I wanted was a curse...
My sanity restored
I realized I did not need to throw a curse.
He had self cursed
Would reap the rewards of his own driving
I am a lazy witch
I monitor my karma
Listen to my blood pressure.
Seeking only graceful intervention.
Dark Chocolate Profiterole
As I lay there on the bench
Face in the green vinyl
Working on my triceps
One arm at a time
My personal trainer barking orders at me
I realized what had transpired:
Wanted to be told what to do
Dark chocolate leather
With thigh high boots
I raised my head
Shared my thought
She rollicked laughing on the floor
The jigsaw came together:
She told of April Fool at the gym
Where dressed in dominatrix leather
She caught his attention
And many others.
She taught me how to eat like an Italian
To roll the eyes
And murmur at the food.
I wore three courses upon my shirt
Salad, soup, dark chocolate profiterole
My shirt was almost good enough to eat
In turn, I offered advice
As is my wont
Even when unasked
And said to her unmasked:
“It sounds like a premium personal training service to me.”
And she ate another dark chocolate profiterole.
Quality of Service
Your lost words floating in the bowels of the Internet
Chopped up like worms, perhaps to reunite
In some new email, read randomly by carnivore strangers
Mutating into new emails
The sound of your bytes echoes across terabyte-walled canyons
Through unknown routers and brouters, switches and packets,
Checked and reconstructed, bounced and resent, reassembled
Diminishing, fading, until the meaning exists only in your cache
The phone rings
Robert the Bruce and Steel Town Liz
Led our way to the sea
Ducking under fallen trees
Down flowered Steep Ravine
Where Fleet of Foot
Who races in perpetual track
Shifted into second
Baker Boy trudged ahead
And Robert named the spring
Flower of no name
New released Prison Girl
Missing Fleet of Foot
Asked where she had gone.
And Abercrombie hiked back up
Unaware of pain
But Steel Town Liz
With legs of steel
Said she wanted more
So Prison Girl and Steel Town Liz
Ran the beach and shore
But could not find Fleet of Foot
They searched at every door.
They figured that she needed more
Than Baker Boy, or Bruce
Could walk in heat of day
And so she walked and ran and talked
She would not take the bus.
Angry Finger, Soothing Wind
I am your biggest fan
My goal is just to sooth.
You've left behind other fans
Who like to chill your bones
Air conditioners on wheels
Window units with remotes
But I am your biggest fan.
I like to see you troubled
Then I can help you sleep
Wipe the tears from your face
Perspiration from your brow
I love to sleep all night with you
Windows fetching wind
I love to see you sleep
Your face relaxed and calm
I am your biggest fan
Don't poke right back at me
To get around my guard
Don't blame me for weather inside your head
Or you may lose the point
I am your biggest fan.
I notice the breasts
Full and proud
Perched on high heels
God, I love this city in summer.
The low moment on the walk was when James trod in a cow patty
The highlight - wild strawberries small and sweet, close to the ground
Where James can see them easily.
The movie moment when James fell down the stairs
Had a happy ending with blueberry pancakes and tears
Ironic, he should just have mastered Slinky-racing down all fourteen steps which takes a little technique.
The fireworks on Canada Day were exceptional for a small town
And so was the weather
As the crowd shivered, dancing to keep warm, whirring their glow sticks
And while the wind was high
It kept the mosquitoes away
And that is never bad.
But when the wind went down
James and Sam found a net and a sticky insect catcher
And did quality control on errant insects
Stomping and catching
Sticking their prey on the gluey bar.
But the high point was the scraping of the cake bowl
The chocolate faces
That needed a water fight in the lake to clean the boys to their original state
The third time that day that they achieved original state
Thanks to the washer and drier.
2001: A New Odyssey *
Last week my new TV arrived
Flat screen, built in DVD, stereo
65,000 points on my American Express Card
Which I failed to order via the Internet
And had to resort to phone:
It is my alternative to more airplane flights.
UPS arrived as I came home
A masterpiece of timing
After missing me the previous day,
Wheeled the box into my living room.
I had a good out of box experience.
It worked first time
Though there was a little trouble a few days later
When I tried to hook up the outputs to my stereo system
Too many buttons depressed on the amp the eventual diagnosis
My first TV was a small black and white
Given to me by my parents who thought I was weird for not owning one.
My second TV, a 12 inch Sony
Made me think I was going blind
When trying to read subtitles at 20 feet.
So now the signal comes in through a channel converter
Bought to provide volume control for the 12 inch TV now gone
And more recently used with my 30 year old post-marital geriatric TV
Purchased by my younger sister, doing her fellowship in Nashville
In pediatric orthopedics
At a garage sale for twenty-five dollars
The one that makes all films look as if they are filmed at night.
It then goes to the VCR
From whence it travels to the TV
Whose outputs feed the input lines of the rack mountable cassette deck
With the first generation LCD volume indicator
A recorder that does not get used very much any more
It gets involved because the TV output cords are too short to reach any further.
The cassette recorder, in turn, when it has a cassette inside
And “Record”, but not “Play” is pressed
Will feed the sound out to the amp
And my speakers.
The sound quality is superb
I use the reference speakers used by the CBC
I doubt a guest will figure it all out
Unless they read this poem.
And so I have learned that the grass at Wimbledon is green, at least early in the tournament
Red a permissible TV color
And sound really does make a difference
I may go deaf if unrestrained.
Welcome stereo to 2001! I think you're going to like it here.
Now if only my home local area network were as simple.
There are certain expectations:
No more fizzy soft drinks;
Interest in and knowledge of wine;
Organic is good;
Macdonalds is out - In-And-Out Burger is in;
Fusion cuisine a must;
And knowledge of sunscreen required if you are blond;
BBQ an expected male skill.
But perhaps most important is the sports requirement.
Rollerblading, hiking, tennis, biking, with golf optional
Jogging and weights
A personal trainer is good;
And for graduate work, kayaking and white water rafting are essentials.
It only took about two hundred and fifty thousand dollars worth of automobiles
To get the graduate work set up.
Two SUVs, a pick-up truck, a Toyota and a BMW
To ferry us from Palo Alto to San Carlos
From San Carlos to Larkspur
From Larkspur to Emerald Hills
From Emerald Hills to the kick off spot
And from the kick off spot to our destination
Twenty-five rafts and who knows how many kayaks
Waited for the water to release
That's American River style
Which also requires TEVA sandals on your feet
And red life jackets
Though they clashed with our puce boat
And Sushama's multi-colored dive booties
Diving only being an optional Californian sport
Though there is pressure to make it a requirement.
It's all new to me as a whitewater virgin
But I have to say after ten miles
And much paddling
It's a whale of a time
A whole lot of fun
And importantly, an upper-body work out.
And given that California is about temptation
I am tempted by the sexy shapes of those obviously highly maneuverable kayaks
Though Kathy tells me
Training is in order.
Graduate work is looking like fun.
July 16, 2001
Monday morning and I am tired of my roving weekend
That leaves me so dissatisfied.
I heard your voice
Its wry intelligence
Handling the frustration of bureaucracy gone mad, perhaps even evil
And thought, “How balanced?”
I hear smiles in your voice,
As you laugh at my tale of email
A woman who wrote. “I have been busy. I was laid again for the second time this year.
Now looking for a job again.”
I heard your laughter rising
Rising above frustration
And time wasted
And like a clear bell ringing
You dropped a compliment
That rippled through my brain
A shame your brother will keep us apart this coming weekend.
July 30, 2001
Japanese Booth Bimbo and Klingon
Buried underground in Moscone Center
Sucked the energy from my smile
As the bones resettled in my feet
Protected only by Saint Birkenstock
Down the row
Star Trek bimbos
Male and female
Hovered around their booth
Ready to beam customers in
A wandering Klingon
300 pounds of something large
Came by to visit
Apparently, an appealing look to women
Strapped behind him on his Harley
Or so he said
And I exchanged jokes
With my Japanese colleagues
In between the waves
Of visitors and
Large from junk food
Thin from nervousness
Uncomfortable with humans
In Brownian motion
Back and forth
From booth to booth
Occasionally consenting to be swiped
March 30, 2002
Molly Stone's Parking Lot
`Great red shoes.'
“Why thank you. I got them in Germany.”
`Nice how they match the BMW. Must have been hard finding a man with a red BMW like this one to match the shoes?'
“Yes, very difficult.”
`High maintenance too, I would guess.'
“He is, absolutely.”
On the other side
Of the bright red car,
And so does mine.
June 29, 2002
The Tennis Racquet: A Poem About Love *****
It has been suggested
That I sleep with the new racquet.
It is untrue.
But I have been tempted
I feel addicted
To the magic of its control
It lets me place the ball anywhere.
I can't get enough.
If this is love, then give me more
But the racquet is demanding
I need to approach the ball just right
Take my arm back
Focus upon the ball
And the racquet's sweet center
It almost moans with pleasure
When all goes right
And all the court is mine to measure
Its sound different
Than every other racquet I have owned
Taking all that I can give
A sweet sweet sound
If this is love, then give me more.
July 31, 2001 Dedicated to a Dunlop 200G
Half Moons on the Bay *****
The sumo wrestlers of the vegetable kingdom
Sat on the beds
Of the pickup trucks
One or two concealed in vans
And U-haul trailers
Guarded by proud parents
The role of genetics
In pregnancies that all began around May.
From orange to pink
Grey to green
Those professionally raised
With water-bottles attached to their stems
Turn by turn
The forklifts came by
And burly men
Wrestled sumo vegetables
Onto the five ton scales
Some taking eight men to slide
Banters about wives
But the emotional winner
Seemed about ten
Sitting on top of his 860 pounder
Raising his arms to the sky
Bringing a smile to all
was the magic number
for sumo cum laude
and we all went home
large enough to sail
or attach motors
and depleted uranium ballast
Explanatory note: Half Moon Bay, CA has a pumpkin festival every Fall.
Howl of the Hounds ***
The bell rings
The hounds howl
Eager to tear their food apart
Their dog cookies
From the large biscotti jar
In the kitchen
Worried about rivals
They retreat to their private lairs
Willing to be friends
For a fee
That must be delivered
At each visit
To purchase silence
Sleep Bitch and Dawn *****
For some the night is long
They await the dawn
And opportunity for revenge
I have this friend
It always begins this way
With secret stories
Today, I met Dement's second generation
Sleep Bitch and Dawn
Or did she say Sleep Witch and Stanford coven?
I dozed and almost missed the Sleep Bitch
Dawn came first
Her diagnosis clear
Unlike my breathing in the night
Sleep Bitch laughed
And checked my mouth
For source of jokes
And pronounced her sacrament
I should not drink and drive with histamine
For fear of highway microsleep
I should not place my faith
In the rhythm of the roads' arousal
Those life saving lane bumps.
They threaten that the face of day
Must wear a mask at night
Darth Vader will my night face be
Unless I am sliced by laser surgery
Or burned and shrunk
It is the revenge of the coven:
Punishment for women long kept up at night
By snoring men.
Sleep Bitch and Dawn
Will fit me in their bed
And measure my consistency
In promise that I may be
I have this friend
In whose secret story
He puts on his Vader mask
Death to his own sawing of logs
Saving a bundle
No new house
No extra room
He gets to keep his wife
Who has this friend.
Note: Dr. William Dement founded the Stanford Sleep Clinic, the first sleep clinic.
Secret Tales *
Handsome and gifted
Irresistible to women
International man of mystery
Gold medal winner
Winner of an Emmy award
Nobel prize nominee
Pulitzer winner and best selling author
He tells himself his secret tales
Growing taller and longer
The aroma of fame his pheromone.
Aphrodite Diet ****
A drunken Aphrodite
Dressed in black,
Barely holding up her cleavage
Wrapped her arms around me
And holding on for support
She loved me
Oh, life is wonderful
I let her go
And down she fell
Half on the pavement
Half on the sidewalk
Oh, so mellow
I picked her up
Told her to get her arms off
The old guy
Oh, so unsubtle
We offered to pick her up anyway
And put her in the pickup truck
Catching the attention of
Her girl friend
Emerging from the restaurant
Oh, so angry
So my friend and I
Went in for sushi
Talk of his far traveling woman
And the ups and downs of mine
Two new Aphrodites
At the bar
Oh, I do like sushi
September 3, 2003
Useful Information About Your Septic Tank **
An email promises me
About my septic tank
Mysteries I would rather not plumb
I live in an apartment
In a city.
Are twenty percent
More sensitive to pain
My electronic news announces
Here is information I can use to good effect
I want more pain killers
When you do anything to me, doctor.
Recreational surgery is not my hobby
My tennis game
Is supported by ibuprofen
Or sodium naproxen
The latter being my non-steroidal anti-inflammatory of the year
My personal award system
For tennis excess.
The kaleidoscope of email
Brings new pairings every day
Like an artist
The offensive and the wanted
Promises and fears
Skepticism about useful information about my septic tank
I take great pride
In having discovered the graceful comet
That came to rest
In North America
Painting the ground with traces of rare metallic earths
Bringing DNA from afar
And while it always sad
To see a species go:
Had his ecological shortfalls:
Failure to reproduce quickly;
Reluctance to brew coffee via filters
Before pumping his body full;
A tendency to wear ill-matching Hawaiian shirts;
Forgetting to sleep.
A new species arises
In the fall-out of clouded skies
And extended winter
Lolling at the side of the soft Pacific
Staring curiously north
At the receding icecaps
Eager for the future
And the plants to grow
New mammals in the pool
The steel grey, late model, ultimate driving machine
Designed for the autobahn
Was clearly better going in a straight line
Or so I concluded from the driver
Pulling up behind me in the parking lot
Blocking me from pulling out
Too important to twist the steering wheel to park her car
In a parking stall
As she dropped off her movie rental.
I suggested she was lazy
So she told me I should get a better car
I would need a Hummer
To drive over her
To get out of my parking spot.
Sometimes you can't tell what people mean
And later on El Camino
She stopped in front of me
Just to annoy
Giving me the finger
Through her sunroof
Demonstrating her ability to use the brakes
Keen to show off
That while parking may have been beneath her
And turning 90 degrees beyond her
She could display other major features of her car
And keen social sensitivity.
Dog Show ***
Tired dogs lay everywhere
Like cushions on the benches
Too exhausted to care
Their breeders slumbering between them
The small slept in cages
And the fortunate few
Mainly those large as horses
Were led outside in pairs
To mark some well deposited territory
And every breeder
His or her breed
There seemed no dumb dogs
At this convention
`Bred for birds'
`Bred as an all-round dog.'
`Bred for pulling fishnets' with curious shaved behinds
Few claimed to bring down bulls or wolves or bears
Though one or two did joke about eating babies
Held in their arms
Which is not so funny
As it has happened
My companion was committed
They could do no wrong.
But even I
With uncertain life
Like a tiny flying horse
And when you shop
Guides tell you what you'll get
Good with children
Bad with cats
So friendly, it would go home with the burglar
Willful and stubborn
Prone to hip disorders and deafness
Watch for wheezing
Will roll in anything you detest
Friendly and loyal
A good watch dog in spite of its small size
A history of genetic forecasts
I suppose my species will be next...
Goldfish as Friends
The Hotel Monaco
Is proud to proclaim
Its 201 guest rooms
Some with a two person spa-tub.
Complimentary goldfish are available
The room CD player
Will permit romantic and raucous
Swimming and partying music
And the room voice mail
Allows you not to take a call
While frolicking with fish
I find it difficult to imagine
Taking along my fish
To the complimentary
Evening wine reception
And wonder whether
They would let my new found friend
Into the hotel pool.
All in all
I am very sure I would have regrets
About the hotel steam room
Unless I were Cantonese
The Twelve Percent Rule **
They say that six out of ten Americans are obese
But I have found
That for most,
The Twelve Percent Rule applies.
Now you can air brush;
You can feather;
You can take away the wrinkles;
You can touch up the color.
But for the wide,
The Twelve Percent Rule
Counts the most.
You can slim them down
In just one move
By changing the picture width
Twelve percent is the rule
Makes them look
Like a Giacometti painting.
March 5, 2003
"What I see is teeming cohesion, contained dispersal. ... For him, to sculpt is to take the fat off space."
-On Alberto Giacometti's work, Situations Braziller 65
taken from Simpson's Contemporary Quotations, Houghton-Mifflin, 1999
The Dog That Did Not Bark in the Night *
I was thrown out of paradise
But now I am returning
The trouble is the damn boxes
My idea of hell
The U-Haul boxes
Barely fit in the car
I had to move the seats
And discovered the Gouda Cheese
Under the passenger seat
Sealed and un-refrigerated
These past four weeks
A silver earring
I wonder whose
But no one has asked
The cheese did not ripen
No one barked in the night
Perhaps it was a perfect cheese
March 25, 2003
Yesterday, I became an ethnic minority.
Here in Connecticut
At Buckland Hills Mall
Staying at my Country Suites Hotel
With verandah and rocking chairs
Overlooking acres and acres of parking lot
Down the hill at
The Bugaboo Creek Steak House
I realized I was no different than
An Italian eating pizza
An Eastern European eating deli food
A German eating sausage
An Austrian eating wienerschnitzel
The English eating pub food
An Indian eating curry
The French eating snails
An Indonesian eating reijstafel
A Dane having his smorgasbord
For there greeting me was a wooden moose
And inside a dopey looking Mountie
And snow equipment bric-a-brac
Above the roaring fire
In log cabin style
The menu filled with meaningless information
About climbing the Bugaboo Range in Canada
And an annoying taped voice misleading
Guests as if it were a reality show
Or theme park
With a twinge of punning humor
That gave me great pain
And so I ordered salmon a rather Canadian fish
Skipped the Canadian beer
And watched a table of fifteen
Packing food away
As if bears
Preparing for a long cold winter
Trapped on an Arctic ice flow
May 15, 2003
Acoustic Staging **
After the League of Extraordinary Gentleman
We window shopped at Draegers
Eying desserts with lust controlled
A Harley roared
Fifteen feet away
Struggling to hear
Above the sound
Of high revved motor
Finger in left ear
And cell in right
He walked over
Reduced his throttle
Walked away again
So he could hear
And so could she
At her location
Answering the question
Why he did not turn the ignition key.
July 13, 2003