Leap Year

An extra day makes leap year extra long
Okay, it’s just a day and days are short
(at least it makes a pleasant little song)
An extra day for laughter, love, or sport!

I’d like an extra day in every year
I guess I’ll have to do with one in four
It isn’t worth the effort of a tear
(I don’t believe that’s what my tears are for!)

But little songs and tears and extra days
Fit nicely in my sweet sonnettic sight
So thank you, Leap Year. You deserve my praise
For giving me an extra day to write!

Earth’s orbit hasn’t changed; it’s just leap year
The 29th of Febuary’s here

Surreal Sonnet

Surreal is like a sonnet without rhyme
Or digging in the trash and finding gold
When blank-verse marks the edges of the moon
Surreal becomes the fastest way back home

Such little songs of poetry may bloom
Like flowers in a field of desert mud
Or finding life in death beneath a rock
Such insects carve their tunnels for their queen

To rhyme without surreal capacity
Enlist the graves of pigeons and of ghosts
Transparent or translucent clouds conform
With paradox, dichotomy, and truth

Surreal is like a couplet found in time
That gives a sonnet just a final word.

Noisy Children are Edible!

I tried to rest, but couldn’t stand the noise
The noise upstairs kept everyone awake
I know it was just active, little boys
But all their noise was more than I could take!

I know that little boys are just fun-size
I know there’s better things that I can eat
But waking carnivores is never wise
When all you are to them is noisy meat!

Just dip them in some batter, add some spice
The noise kids make does little to their taste
A dash of salt makes everything quite nice
Then put them in the oven; let them baste!

So kids, beware when Gramma says you’re sweet
You may be small, but still you’re good to eat!

George Washington and Presidents’ Day

George Washington deserves more than a day
Virginia was his home before most states
Became the country Washington would say
Deserves respect without prolonged debates

Regardless of the holiday we forge
On some day, late in winter, or in spring
To celebrate our Union’s Father, George
Let’s gather round Old Glory and let’s sing

Let freedom always ring from sea to sea
Let liberty and life be our pursuits
Such happiness belongs to you and me
George Washington ensured our tree had roots

A day which we, his countrymen, revere
Reminds us of the peace he brought, each year.

Bright Shores of Dreams

This is the tune I am working into this sonnet:(emilie)
Within your eyes I see awaiting dreams;
Flow on, flow on into their waiting streams,
On ships of gold that sail into the night,
And drift to shores where everything is bright.

Bright shores of dreams are waiting there for you,
So sleep and may your golden dreams come true.

Within your heart I know the dreams you keep;
Hold on, hold on to them within your sleep.
Your heart of gold will shine forever bright,
And in your dreams will be your guiding light.

Bright shores of dreams are waiting there for you,
So sleep and may your golden dreams come true.

Bright shores where all your golden dreams come true,
So sleep, so sleep, they’re waiting there for you.

Meaning of a shore in a dream.

To Keats’ Wayward Girl, Et Alia

Tonight I say farewell to all the girls–
To all the wayward girls I’ve ever known–
To all the girls I’ve ever given pearls,
Good-bye to you, and keep them as your own.
I gave them freely, even if you thought
They came with string attached or some design
To lure you toward the traps you often sought
(If you were trapped, they surely were not mine!)
And most of all, I bid adieu to Fame,
The flirt who barely cast a glance my way.
I’m sure she doesn’t even know my name,
Surrounded by her thoughtless boys all day.
And so, resolved and written here this night,
I’m sure she’ll find my bed by morning’s light.

This sonnet is an allusion to one by John Keats:

On Fame


Fame, like a wayward girl, will still be coy
To those who woo her with too slavish knees,
But makes surrender to some thoughtless boy,
And dotes the more upon a heart at ease.
She is a Gipsey, — will not speak to those
Who have not learnt to be content without her;
A Jilt, whose ear was never whisper’d close,
Who thinks they scandal her who talk about her;
A very Gipsey is she, Nilus-born,
Sister-in-law to jealous Potiphar,
Ye lovesick Bards! repay her scorn for scorn;
Ye Artists lovelorn! madmen that ye are!
Make your best bow to her and bid adieu,
Then, if she likes it, she will follow you.

14 Things I Love About You

(for Wendy)

1. I Love Your Hands

I love your hands, they seem to love me too
I love the way your fingers touch my skin
My hands applaud the things your hands can do
Come place your hand in mine as we begin
The journey that our hands already know
Along the paths and trails our hearts define
I love the places where, our hands will go
And if your hand gets cold, I’ll give you mine
I’ve got to hand it to your loving hands
They handle life with soft and subtle care
Your handiwork unfolds as peace expands
Your loving hands caress me everywhere
Come press your palms where loving hands belong
And let your hands conduct my simple song.

Continue reading

My Sick Doll

My doll felt warm; I thought that she was sick
Said sister: “That’s a silly thing to think!”
I wanted her to rest and feel good, quick!
I nursed my doll while sister had her drink

I love my doll and sister likes her tea
I love my sister too; I think she’s smart
When I get sick, she’s just as good to me
As I am to my doll; I love her heart

I want to be a nurse to my sick doll
I’ll nurse her back to health the kindest way
Perhaps I’ll be a nurse to one and all
I’ll practice on my doll until that day

My doll may not be sick, like sister said
But I can still be kind and feel her head.

Chihuly Glass at Phipps Conservatory

I’m awed at how he twists the glass to art
I saw it in Tacoma, then . . . surprise!
Chilhuly’s glass in Pittsburgh touched my heart
At Phipps, where art and orchids filled my eyes!

He overcame an accident, like me
We both know what it’s like to hit a car
But Dale does more with glass than injury
I’m glad that he displays it near and far!

I’d like to twist my words like Dale twists glass
So beauty, peace, and strength can be displayed
Can light reflect from words that I amass?
Can words or glass display what God has made?

I’ll be forever awed by art like this
Chihuly art that brings poetic bliss.

A Conversation with Andy Warhol, King of Pop

I am in Pittsburgh with my wife. We came here to visit her friend, who is also a triathlete, and I have been able to get in some good training with her. Yesterday we swam at a local pool, then we went for about a 16 mile ride through some of the “decorative” north hills. After our ride we went to dinner at the Church Brew Works, an old Catholic church that has been converted into a micro-brewery! Awesome food, beer, and service! (Their napkins say “On the 8th day, man created beer.” I told them that on the 9th day, God created the hangover!)

After our dinner we went to the Andy Warhol Museum. I wrote the following poem in one of the galleries:

I spoke with Andy, using words of Pop
He said to use Pop words to write my verse
I started writing, then I couldn’t stop
He told me not to stop; it could be worse
What’s worse than writing shit, incessantly?
I wondered with the next words that I spoke
He said, That’s great; you’re flowing musically!
Like opera, when the tenor starts to choke!
I wished that he would come and share a beer
I bought a Stella, drank a toast to him
The man was dead, and yet I felt him near
Like Stella’s foam, he lingered on the brim
I said Adieu; he laughed and flipped me off
It’s only Pop, he said, if critics scoff.