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  #11  
Unread 01-01-2018, 10:00 AM
John Isbell John Isbell is online now
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New Year’s Day

A sort of cantileña – or a sketch
of some song that has not been written – in
the January air. I cannot speak
to what bird has begun to sing, but each
trill and cadenza thrills me. At about
the time the sun lifts in the East, and those
who rise to greet the dawn are making breakfast,
the first birds stir. Now there are those who wend
their way through blue air, opening their wings
to pulse across the heavens; there are others
who choose to sing, and from their singing throats
comes melody. It breaks and scatters, like
a rainfall hitting foliage, or like
an army in defeat. But there is glory
in each raw note; it is a testament
to how this silent planet can unloose
its fetters, and reclaim its voice. The language
escapes my ken. But it is fresh as dew
in my contorted ear, and I begin
to be someone quite different. I might
grow wings yet and take flight myself. I might
yet sing and not be understood. The sun
is looking through my window, it is morning.
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  #12  
Unread 01-01-2018, 12:50 PM
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RCL RCL is offline
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A No Man

If he could warmly croon
or play a bass bassoon
that would be a boon
but it would stop too soon.

This kind of man’s a no-man
molded from a man-plan
a man without a life-span
an isolated now-man.

The faux man is jejune
head echoing the moon
his torso a balloon
and vapor in his ruin.

Our essence turned to ice,
he mirrors mankind twice.
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  #13  
Unread 01-06-2018, 11:03 PM
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RCL RCL is offline
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Default Fiat Lux!

Nearly forgot, it's the last day of the holidays:

Epiphany

We journeyed those gray days to see
the source of light diminishing night
and found a babe. Hopefully,
we journeyed those gray days to see
a Magus: he glittered brilliantly,
enthralling us with magic light.
We journeyed those gray days to see
the font of light diminishing night.
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  #14  
Unread 01-09-2018, 10:10 PM
Ken Brownlow Ken Brownlow is offline
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Default Possibly in bad taste

Where to go on vacation

England came to mind.
Except I was born into a nation of rude shopkeepers:
why bother.
.
Then I thought of Paris, the continent!
However, the smell of piss on cobblestones is universal
so what would be the point.

The big cities of North America appeal.
But I’ve had a gun thrust in my face before
so there is no need to go there.

A sunny beach in Mexico would be nice.
Although, they say the toot around here is laced with violence enough.
I can save myself the trouble.

Possibly some oriental magic: Tokyo, Beijing
or even old Mandalay.
But I must admit it doesn’t matter where you live
smog is smog with only the occasional acidic variation.

Nope, there’s no need to travel anywhere exotic
everything I need is here.

I will holiday at home.

Last edited by Ken Brownlow; 01-23-2018 at 09:57 PM.
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  #15  
Unread 12-19-2018, 06:04 PM
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RCL RCL is offline
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Default The Sisyphean Santa

The Santa Claus Rock

This hauler of stuff still stuffs our socks
from sacks he rolls to the world’s rooftops.
Each empty sack rolls back and mocks
this hauler of stuff who stuffs our socks
to the ticks and tocks of incessant clocks.
Our avatar, he never stops
this hauling of stuff to stuff our socks
from sacks he rolls to the world’s rooftops.
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  #16  
Unread 12-19-2018, 10:33 PM
Michael Cantor Michael Cantor is offline
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Tum-ta-tum-tum-tum-parum-pum-pum-pum

December’s here and I can hear the thrum
of that obnoxious kid; the dumb-dumb-dumb
and droning, chirping, moaning hum of hum-
bug sweetness fills the mall with every strum
and echo like a film of honeyed scum.
It cloaks and gums the jam-packed shopping slum,
reverberates inside each tympanum,
until I think my ears and mind are numb.

But, hey, these nifty, complementary rum-
laced egg-nog thingies go down well; and come
to think of it, I shouldn’t be so glum
when I can have another sugar-plum -
hey, hon’ –a double one please, for my chum –
parum pum pum pum, he and his drum.

Last edited by Michael Cantor; 12-19-2018 at 10:36 PM.
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  #17  
Unread 12-20-2018, 05:51 PM
Edmund Conti Edmund Conti is offline
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Location: Summit NJ USA
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A Lovely Day in the Neighborhood

I’m telling one of my neighbors about
my latest worry. That someday someone
will move next door to me and be one
of those guys who like to overdecorate
their homes for Christmas. You know,
I tell him, with the plastic Santa Claus
and the Styrofoam snowmen—a whole
family of them—and reindeer, on the roof
probably, and lights, lots of lights,
green lights, blue lights, orange lights,
yellow lights, all flashing, and music,
loud music, piped from the house, day and
night, you know, all the favorites—
I saw Mama Kissing Santa Claus, the chipmunks,
Bing Crosby—and the sightseers in their
vans and pickups, gawking, stopping, blocking
my driveway, leaving garbage.

I stop to catch my breath and my neighbor
taps his specially blended tobacco from
his specially ordered meerschaum pipe,
puts his Mark Cross briefcase on the back
seat of his Jaguar and before he gets in
turns to me and says, listen, you want
something to worry about? The next time
I catch your goddam mutt taking a crap
in my wife’s prize petunias, I’m going to
punch your fucking lights out.
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  #18  
Unread 12-22-2018, 12:18 PM
Julie Steiner's Avatar
Julie Steiner Julie Steiner is offline
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I'm enjoying these. Can I bring a vanity post to the potluck? (I published these back in the oughties.)


Quick Change

backstage at The Nutcracker

The oboe sighs its last insinuation.
Applause. I tense. I ought to hear her bare
feet in the hallway. Flutes start shrilling. There!
The harem-girl trots up for transformation.
I fight the hooks-and-eyes and perspiration
that hold her clothes on. Something rips. I swear.
Applause. No time. I hurriedly prepare
her tights. The music's much too fast! Damnation!
Applause. Just one more song to go, and I'm
still fumbling with the buckle of her shoe!
We hoist the massive, domelike skirt in place.
I fasten it. Applause. I paint her face
with Mother Ginger's clown-lips, just in time.

From gorgeous to grotesque, so fast. So true.


Advent Carol

Hush that anguished hymn you’re humming:
“Come, O Come, Emmanuel.”
Trumpet Christmas! Fix his coming
firmly at “The First Nowell.”

He’s already come in glory!
Why plead, “Savior, come at last”?
Let’s talk Christmas! Tell a story
safely in the distant past.

Drown out John the Baptist. Edit
out “Prepare! Make straight the way!”
Cut to Christmas! Buy on credit.
Square things up another day.

Advent’s dreary. Let’s start living
Christmas now! Wear red and green!
While we’re at it, skip Thanksgiving!
Deck the halls at Halloween!

Then, when the Incarnate Verb
overnight becomes passé,
carry Christmas to the curb.
Pack the Prince of Peace away.

Last edited by Julie Steiner; 12-22-2018 at 12:20 PM.
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  #19  
Unread 01-06-2019, 12:41 PM
Felicity Teague Felicity Teague is offline
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Location: Gloucestershire, UK
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Belatedly, Happy New Year to all <(:-)


Thirteenth day

On the thirteenth day of Christmas,
no gifts were sent to me;
there was nothing for the isthmus,
my home since '93.

I was clearing up the garden,
just trying to set things straight,
when I heard a, 'Beg y'pardon?'
MyTrueLove, at the gate!

'I see Amazon delivered,'
he said; I nodded, 'Yes',
while Pierre Partridge sort of shivered
then made another mess.

'Well, a thousand thanks, MyTrueLove!'
I tried to sound upbeat,
but he shrieked, for Mrs Blue Dove
was pecking at his feet.

'I suppose I went a bit mad,'
he sighed, and hung his head;
'it's just, I thought you and FitLad…?'
I laughed. 'No, no,' I said.

'Let's go in; I'll cook six omelettes.'
I smiled, and in we went,
'midst the flares of seven trompettes
and leaps of tenfold gent.
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  #20  
Unread 01-07-2019, 01:43 AM
Ann Drysdale's Avatar
Ann Drysdale Ann Drysdale is offline
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Nice one, Fliss. And a Happy New Year to you, too.
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