Archive for the ‘poetry’ Category

Butternut Hill

Posted: August 11, 2017 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing
Tags: , , , ,

I’m going to go there again some day
It has been many years
when I walked arm and arm with my sisters
and sang crazy rock and roll songs
And laughed how the new tune could be sang
using the name of our Butternut Hill.

Our Butternut Hill,
So well known for bad brakes
pumping our bicycles up the slope
slowing down all of the way.
spinning a tire on the loose gravel
reaching , reaching for the top.

Known for its bread trucks and
bottled milk men
That slid backwards on the ice
past the stop sign
across Highway 2
and into the ditch below.

Butternut Hill
Why do I remember it still
Just a steep grade on a short block
and now so much easier to climb.
Downhill north, uphill south
Where I learned to reach.

DSS

 

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Ninety Minutes

Posted: August 4, 2017 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing
Tags: , , , ,

One hour and thirty minutes
I will be late if not there in
One hour and thirty minutes
But I am in no hurry to burn the time
between now and then
Children are born in that length of time
from no breath and not breathing
to first gasp and first cry.

In that length of time I can sit peacefully
and ride miles high from Chicago to Kansas City
breathing only filtered air
and with window shades pulled
never feel or see a motion
other than a bump from a pocket of air
or a staggering walk to the lavatory.
In that length of time.

I am in no hurry to burn the time
Those ninety invisible minutes
Minutes I must use to wash my body and hair
and shave my creasing face.
For crying out loud..
Husbands and wives are married
in that length of time
in those same damn fleeting minutes
And here I am spending it taking a shower

Important things happen in that relative
but accurate to the second length of time
So I will serve up my own importance
between the now and then
this ninety minutes of life
I may seem late on the time of others
but I won’t be late on mine.
Those spent ninety minutes of time.

DSS

(This is an old one from a few years ago. Back when I looked at time a little differently but not much. Sorry for the re-blog, but I really am working on something new. I think it will be worth your time. )

 

My head turns to thoughts of the Moon
The Full, the Crescent, the New
I think of the Moon’s oblong Tide that rolls across our planet
Not stopping at the ocean’s edge but continuing across plains, mountains and Man.
Tugging on water, granite and skull as it makes its way around Earth captured paths.
Raising and lowering
Stretching and shrinking
Day in and day out
Performing a constant celestial massage on all things of this world.
Forming and changing shores, mountains and minds.
Bringing spring tides or slack waters

DSS

The quiet morning’s sounds of dog barks and bird songs were broken by the cranking whine, stuttered start and roar of 600 horsepower round engines. Two more spray planes take off to the south. From my window I watch the planes climb to only tree top level and disappear beyond the close horizon.
Another early beginning to take advantage of the calm winds and light turbulence that will only last a precious few hours on hot summer days like these. What will the enemy be today, green bugs, corn borers or ravenous grasshoppers? Miles away from here the planes will perform their low level ballet spreading their fog from one end of the fields to the other. At the end of each pass a short climb, a quick bank and a slow roll to an opposite turn. The chandelle complete, a dive over or under the power lines and aligned for another five foot high pass. The noise, precision and grace are spell binding and impossible to let pass without stopping to watch. Very beautiful, at least for a temporarily earth bound pilot like me. Emptied, they will soon return to port.
I will hear them first as they fly downwind directly over our home. The change of engine and prop pitch as they pass adds to the pulse of my chest. They must do this to tease me. Damn its hard work but I know they are having fun.

Such is the life of John

If you could peer through that wavy glass,
on the other side, it isn’t covered in silver
It is only a thin shiny grey coat of paint
and there is nothing more .
The mirror shows only a thin reflection
of my messed-up hair and unshaven face.
There is nothing more in that square frame.
If it could only show the way I feel,
the good or bad that I see
or the light or heavy touch of my hands,
it may be of tangible value.
But that thin mirror shows no more
than the faint reflection of what others already see.

DSS

Ignite It

Posted: July 16, 2017 in free verse, poem, poet, poetry, writing
Tags: , , , , ,

It’s time to rid the page of the negative
and gently scribe the positive.
Somewhere deep within the jelly of the mind and skull,
shaking there, quivering there within it.
A small spark is firing,
a spark waiting to be fueled,
igniting a more good thought.
The combustible will come from outside it.
It will be a kind word,
the purr of a cat,
or noticing the beauty of young unblemished skin.
The fuel is everywhere.
Let that small moist spark ignite it.

DSS

(An oldie but goodie)

July, it feels like a new start or it feels we are reaching the end. July, the seventh month, the half way there to the end. Was January that long ago? Is December that long to come?

We plow through the month like a carton of cigarettes and we are chain smokers. Leaving the remnants of ourselves, the ones we love and our work in over-filled ashtrays. We are all different. There are the smokers and the non-smokers. We all have our used up leftovers we leave behind.

We non-smokers have our own useless disposed of hours and days, too. Whether we treat the month like a case of Aquafina, Budweiser or a damn giant jar of Pistachios, we consume the days and at the end of the month what we have to show for it may be just a few dozen plastic bottles or aluminum cans for the re-cycle or our ashtrays are only filled with green tinted lightly salted nut shells. And you that suck on sunflower seeds all month and spit out the hulls on the pickup floorboards, I have no sympathy for ya. You probably only have a month of mess to clean up.

July, we always start it out with fireworks, red,white and blue, good intentions and picnics and end the month with the garbage cans full of watermelon rinds, potato salad and the drive-way covered with black burnt spots that don’t wash off until we find ourselves in the dog days of August.

July, a very hot and messy month. It’s not like any of the others. It is really hard to get anything useful done in July. An interesting month of time.

E

 

Beyond the shade of evening light
and far from the brilliance of stars
there is a place where thoughts are born
and where they go when dimmed.

It is a place where no man can go
not flesh nor soul or ghost
It is where all dreams are made
and where poems reign as king

Poems within transparent books
Of words from thoughts unseen
When opened the words pierce the poet’s skull
and forms the verse he sees

Books only opened up by love
or peace or hate and jealousy
Pages turned by an emotional muse
Who throws them out at lightning speed

Thoughts caught behind wide green tinted eyes
Squarely neatly within hollow porous bone
Thoughts caught by a searching willing soul
Who believes his careful words are all his own

DSS

My “first”, we have all had our “first”. Just name it and hopefully you have had it. Nothing better than getting our “first” done and over with, no matter what or who it was. Which “first” immediately came to your mind when you first read this? Now just because something was your “first” doesn’t mean it was a pleasant experience. I remember my first beer with my old man.

On a very hot July afternoon, I was cutting weeds on my grandmother’s farm with my father. I came upon a very thick elm tree sprout along the fence line that the hand scythe wouldn’t cleanly cut, so I began to use a small hand saw. On my first stroke, the saw bounced  across the limb and landed squarely on my finger at the base of my thumb nail. It cut deeply into the flesh and nail.  The pain on my thumb and the sight of white bone made me a little sick and woozy. I asked for a drink of water, which we had just ran out of, so my father gave me the last cold can of beer in our cooler.

On that hot, humid day, I remember the coolness of the can and the sound of the crunch of making the two triangular holes in its top with the beer can opener. (Yes, before “pop-top” cans) I took a long, long cool swig of the Hamms and immediately got light-headed, sicker at my stomach and threw up.  That was my first beer with my father at the age of 12.

Not as good of an experience that you would dream, of a young man’s first sharing of a beer with the old man, but I do remember it distinctly and perhaps a little fondly. As I stood there, bent over, spewing and ridding my stomach of my over accumulation of the contents of that day’s water jug and its first introduction of beer on a hot day, my old man says “well it is too hot to waste it that way, if you aren’t going to finish that beer, I will sure as hell finish it for ya”. He threw me another rag to wrap around my thumb and we left for town to get the stitches put in.

And yes, after he evidently smelled my breath, the doctor asked , “have you been drinking?”.  I belched. The Doc looked at the sheepish grin on my old man’s face and only smiled and shook his head.

OC

 

It is not that the events of the past few months are not interesting, bazaar and in the words of others, “totally unbelievable – unbelievable”. It is just me writing about them that would probably just make them a boor, or is it a bore?

It reminds me of an experience I had while an electronic communications specialist. I received a formal “squawk” via email, from a dispatcher, that many management names were also copied, informing me and they that a vital communications receiver’s audio was at an  “unbelievably loud level“. And he was requesting that the equipment be repaired immediately.  Since so many “higher-ups” were copied I responded promptly assuming that there was something very wrong with this very expensive piece of gear. After “repairing” the receiver, I replied-to-all this short report of the fix.

“Turned the radio’s volume control knob down to a more “believable” level”.

I received the most replies and accolades and chuckles from management on that single “repair” than any other that I’d done in my entire career.

I guess the point I’m making here is, we could use a lot less “unbelievable” adjectives and adverbs these days spewed from the Administration. And it would probably do the Country much more good if before a lot of huge adjectives are used and unnecessary squawking is done, perhaps things should first just be turned down to a more believable level.

E.