Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Nightfall, Another November

Painting by Beth Edwards

Nightfall, Another November

I stepped outside at 5:00 and another November struck me
like a black bolt of ash -- the darkness of early sundown,
the steely chill of snow-threatening clouds,
and a near-deafening din that drowned out the wind.
The colors of October long ago disappeared,
fallen to the ankles of once brightly outfitted trees
that stood as beacons for weekend leaf peepers.

They now reached skyward in scraggly stick-'em-up
posture, robbed of their raiment
by frost and frigid currents. Shivering sentinels,
the skeleton maples, hickories and oaks,
found their bony limbs decorated by hundreds of
nattering neighbors in jet, keeping with
the dark end of the month’s gray-scale color scheme.

Advent ornaments, lit by sundown, shiny and black,
adorned the branches. Ebony leaves full of cawing cacophony.
At dawn, these gravity-defying decorations disappear,
falling up and away, shed in an anti-autumn explosion
of feathers, noise, and bad intent,
onyx scavengers crowing their ascendancy
over a napping Nature.

And I feel the bones of another of my years
about to be picked clean.

Joe Hesch

Posted over on his site A Thing For Words
Listed as #9 over on dVerse Poets--Open Link Night

The First Breath

image borrowed from bing

The First Breath

it’s the first breath
when candlelight stirs a dormant hunger
longing to escape the busy day
and whispers fill the air
with night’s approaching din
we unwind a peaceful solitude

the breath passes
through the sky in streams of silk
oranges, reds and purples spread throughout
arousing chills and so much more
you light the fire pit, our lips unite
burning in the bottom of desire
intoxicating is the pleasure of your touch

your breath I feel
beneath the poncho liner camouflaged
with naked skin to rub across
as we embrace the evening’s ambiance
the makeshift hammock that you strung
between the live oak trees
swaying back and forth as we make love
leaves falling on the ground as we succumb
a gasp of breath in twilight’s dawn
assures me that our love endures

laurie kolp

Posted over on her site Birds-Eye Gemini
Listed as #28 over on dVerse Poets--Open Link Night


image borrowed from bing


It was winter and my morning commute to my boring job had to be altered due to much needed street repairs. The skies overhead cast shades of grey everywhere, threatening snow. No sun, no blue sky; my life had progressed into a stage of the doldrums, as my poor departed Grandmother would often say. I faced the future alone with no promise of brighter days. I felt as worthless as the sun behind the blanket of clouds, unable to warm the earth, her inhabitants--or my heart. With each passing day I felt relief at being one day closer to the end of my life. After all, what was left for me?

As I turned onto an unknown street, my eyes were greeted with a blast of vibrant color. I squinted into the blaze before me, unaccustomed to the glaring beauty. Something began to warm within the center of my being. A smile played at the corners of my usually pursed lips. A derelict couch, abandoned by its former owner, sat proudly against the grey of the cement wall. Although tattered and worn, it proudly professed its cheeriness to the world. A beacon to all who chanced to make the turn. I stopped to gaze upon it's beauty, to share its hope for a better day. I drove away humming, directing my auto in the opposite direction from my work. Deciding to go shopping instead of to work. It might be a good day to rethink my future, find a new job perhaps. Why not? If that old couch could have hope for a better day, then why not me?

C. Hummel Kornell

Posted over on his site CHK, Artist, Photographer, and Writer
Listed as #6 over on Magpie Tales 93

Poor, White, and Alright

image borrowed from bing

Poor, White, and Alright

Random red loveseat
sitting on a curb
in this distant, cold
city to which I ran...
away from the hunter
who stalked my nights...
away from the family
that could only see
Preacher Friday
when they looked at me...
away from you, too,
dear brother of mine.
I had to find myself,
be myself...sit alone
in the office chair
of my life.
That does not mean
I do not long for one
last night of sharing
the old sofa we put
out on granny's porch...
smoking and sipping and
annoying the neighbors
with rock and/or roll
and lots and lots
of laughter.

Lemuel Crouse

aka: Dr. Linthead

Posted over on his site Child of a Frosty Morning
Listed as #49 over on Magpie Tales 93

The Little Girl Named After a Truck

image borrowed from bing

The Little Girl Named After a Truck

She is motion on two legs with drool, babbling, and a wicked smile. She is both wave and particle. She bounces from person to person like a pinball, leaving a trail of laughter and destruction. She is a little over one year old and named after an SUV.

Our house is full; fifteen or so of my wife’s cousins, aunts, uncles, and friends have come for Thanksgiving. They are my family, now, and are in my home, and this little girl squeals and laughs as she rips Kleenexes apart and scatters them on the floor like confetti, pulls DVDs from their cases and jumps up and down on them, chews the business end of a fireplace match and runs headlong towards the stairs for which there is no baby-gate, yet. Her mother, all of twenty years old and a young twenty, at that, is texting her new boyfriend on the couch, oblivious.

The little girl’s aunt and uncle who are both younger than the mother, sometimes catch her before she careens down the stairs or out the door, but they are equally intent on card games, eating or looking things up on their iPones. Another teenaged cousin who I haven’t seen in years takes over duties towards the end, and keeps the little girl from breaking her neck, though it's clear she and her own mom are less than thrilled that they are now the gate-keepers for a one-year-old ferral child.

My wife alternately tries to feed the kid the homemade food she's prepared especially for the littlest kids and tries to convince her cousin to put the little girl down for a nap in the pack'n'play set up away from the noise for that very purpose, but is unsuccessful on both counts, so she doesn’t eat more than a few bites of banana and a mouthful of applesauce in something like seven hours, and has no nap at all.

I’m watching my own seven month old, who is being passed around like a new toy. I try to keep an eye on the little girl, the living epitome of unchecked energy, but then someone catches her and I lose her, thinking she’s safe, until she breaks free again and I see her streaking toward the open back-door. All of us are watching her with one eye, but none of us is watching with both. My daughter starts to fuss, and as I move in to take advantage of this and whisk her away from the ruckus, I nearly collide with the little girl. She stops short with a smile and a dirty face, reaches for me, and, as she probably has to every male in the house, asks, “Daddy?”

Fifteen months ago, my wife and I nearly adopted that little girl. This was before my wife knew she was pregnant. Her then eighteen year old cousin was single, unemployed (though she might’ve had a part-time job if she'd wanted it), a college drop-out, and one of the most sheltered children I’ve ever met. I’m not being mean, here, simply honest. At eight months pregnant she’d been dumped by the child’s father, a significantly older guy in the military who’d rather spend his money on expensive toys and his time elsewhere, but who insisted on naming the kid after the SUV. My wife and I had been trying to have a kid for a few years, at that point, and were towards the end of a hail-mary attempt when my wife’s cousin called in distress over her situation.

She said that if she was going to give her baby up to anyone, it would be us, but she needed time to think about it. We felt something like Sartre’s characters in “The Wall,” waiting through the night for the firing squad. We talked it out between ourselves while we waited. We thought: here’s a kid who’s screwed up her life but could still make good. She could walk away and start over. Then again, raising a kid could be the best thing for her. It could be a crash-course in growing up, which she desperately needs. On the other hand, let’s be realistic: What does she know about the kind of hard work and sacrifices this would require? But what did we know about them either?

We tried to be logical. There was no way we could afford a kid just yet. I was training in a new position and, once I had that, gunning for a promotion, but I wouldn’t have it for another year. We had a plan, and that plan required our hail-mary to pay off, sure, but we didn’t expect to actually have a kid for another ten months or so. But here was opportunity tapping at our door. And we knew we could make it work, somehow.

When she called and said she’d decided to keep the baby after all, my wife waited until she got off the phone to break down. We both thought this might’ve been our last chance, but what could we do? It wasn’t our decision to make. We had to respect it and be supportive. We hoped for the best. We hoped she would take advantage of this opportunity, dig in, and do right by her soon-to-be child. When my wife found out she was pregnant a few weeks later, our course was set. But still, in the back of our minds, we wondered: what if?

While the family was in town for Thanksgiving, we had the opportunity to see several approaches to parenting. By far the most developed kid was a teenager, "Martin," whose single mother kept him in line (some would say nagged him constantly). But it was obvious this kid would have a future. It was obvious that his mother understood that the work of being a parent often means acting in opposition to your kid/s' wishes or natural inclinations. Kids test boundaries. It’s tiring to push back, but a lot of the time, you have to if you want the kids to develop positive habits. Another cousin, "Mandy," meanwhile, talked about sneaking out the night before and partying. Martin was sullen during this conversation, feeling left out. He didn’t understand how much his mother was doing for him by making sure he was left out, of course. Being a parent means being unpopular sometimes. Mandy's mother, on the other hand, didn’t even chastise her daughter for sneaking out to spend the night with her boyfriend. She simply grinned, apparently at the horrible joke that her other teenaged daughter was well on the way to having a baby of her own, just like her sister.

There is a lot of pain in this family, and it tends to manifest in self-absorption of one kind or another, which, of course, could be said of most of us. What that means in real life is some non-engaged parents. If I were unkind, I could say that some of these folks were too busy looking for their own gratification and ended up ignoring their children. This is the greatest fear I have about my own parenting. But perhaps that’s the difference; being aware of this means I can be proactive in preventing it. I don’t mean to sound conceited or arrogant. I’m not perfect; far from it. I’m deeply flawed. And if it wasn’t for my wife, I would be much more so. One of the first things I did when my wife became pregnant was start to see a psychologist. This wasn’t because I was depressed about having a kid; it was because I had a ton of issues and I didn’t want to screw my kid up. I didn’t have good models for parenting because of various circumstances, so I look around at other people, and I try my best to figure out what works. And seeing how these folks acted towards their kids, I learned a lot about what works and what doesn’t.

I may well still screw up royally. But I hope I don’t, and I plan to do everything in my power to keep from it.

After everyone left, my wife and I talked about the little girl and everything else I’ve been writing about. “They’re good people,” my wife said. And it’s true, I’m sure. The teenaged mother isn’t actively bad; she’s just a kid who happens to have a kid and is completely unprepared for it. Her mother is freshly divorced and trying to have some fun. Everyone has their own hell, and it’s easy to judge when you haven’t lived with the fumes. We’re too close to the situation to have any real perspective, and I’m sure we exaggerate what we don’t see and take what we do see for the worst. But seeing that little girl running wild while her mother ignored her and her immediate family only stepped in when she became a nuisance, we couldn’t help but wish that her mother had said yes, all those months ago. But there’s not much we can do about it. There’s always going to be horror outside the door. There’s nothing to be done about that. What’s inside the house, that you can affect.

C.L. Bledsoe

Posted over on his site Murder Your Darlings

Family Creeps

image borrowed from bing

family creeps

family creeps
up on you when
you least expect
it – a dash of
red here, a
familiar roll
of the eyes
there, a classic
or a corkscrew
curl – but in
the end, it’s
the same with
strangers, some
are left better

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Pawning Yesterday

image borrowed from brian miller

Pawning yesterday, for today, in hope of tomorrow

do you know how many times
i go looking for a CD, song stuck
in my head, realizing it was in the collection
i hocked, the year i thought, "fuck
what have i gotten us into?"

i don't miss the golf clubs my parents bought
for Christmas, returned the next week, to keep
the lights on, i was a hack anyway
and probably would have wrapped one
around a tree when i missed a crucial
(to me only) shot

& perusing the pawn shop today
guitars, glitter and games all hang
tags like the ones toed at the morgue,
dead memories walking, i am anxious again
remembering desperation's fingers
twist of my spine as i was learning to lose,
being broke & and the lines
on all its various faces

there is not much left
there is not much left, but

52.4 billion was spent this weekend
by Americans in Black Friday shopping
for tomorrow's bankrupt masquerade,
but i refuse the mask,

and if i can't find the song, hell, we been here
before, i'll just hum along as we slow dance
in the tree glow, knowing i got everything i need

merry Christmas, to you
merry Christmas, to me

Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One
Listed as #5 over on dVerse Poets--Open Link Night

Porcelain Skinned

image borrowed from bing

Porcelain Skinned

No-one else sees that girl on the sofa. She's nine, maybe ten, scabby knees and a runny nose, she holds a porcelain doll...always...

Each morning as the bus travels through the tunnel, I vow not to meet her gaze. But she beckons.

I look. She has grey eyes, maybe green. It's dark in this tunnel. She's strangely beautiful.
Lately, she has taken to point her finger at me. No ! she says.

-It's in your mind, Edie- I say to myself-Guilt has you imagining dead girls with dolls on their laps-

Last night, on my way home from work, she sat upon my front step.

She sang to her doll in a sweet, clear voice.

I tried my key in the lock, it wouldn't fit.

'Don't be with that man', she said in a sing song voice.

'Men like that don't like babies'.

I saw my lover turn the corner. I tried to speak but only a bubble of breath remained.

'Men like that live in every time', the ghost girl said.

She stood up, put her hand in mine. It was warm.

'Don't tell him about the baby'.

I look in my bag, champagne and a blue line on a pregnancy test.

'He will tell you to get rid of it'.

It. it. it. it.

My lover approached. The girl held tight to my hand, a scent of old fashioned perfume clung to both of us. Like a premonition.

'I am an it', she whispered.

Then she disappeared, the girl and the doll, both of them porcelain skinned.

I turned to greet my lover.

'He's had a bad day', I thought. His smile was pasted on, a bad Photoshop fit.
The champagne slipped. It smashed on the steps.
The pregnancy test with the blue line stayed safe inside my bag.

'Anything strange?', he said.

'No, nothing at all', I said.

Brigid O'Connor

Posted over on her site Sort of Writing
Listed as #97 over on Magpie Tales 93

Tell Me

image borrowed from bing

Tell Me

the sweet paradox
the great mystery
the heart’s quandary

tell me what you know
about the giving
the receiving

tell me please
what you know
about love
about connection
about the magic of the sync
for together feels always feels only

• • •

rob kistner © 2011

Posted over on his site Image and Verse
Listed as #70 over on Magpie Tales 93
Listed as #93 over on dVerse Poets--Open Link Night

The Day She Figured Out Her Camera's Timer

image by jannie funster

the day she figured out her camera's timer

The neighbors still rave about
how she shook her maracas.

How she flung peas into the trees.
Then her blue bra over the roof.

She still had not quite mastered
her Kodak’s indoor light settings…

but, by golly — Thanksgiving 2011,
the day she learned which camera
button to press, and how to run like
heck into position – sweet potatoes
everywhere did a happy fandango.

Jannie Funster

Posted over on her site Jannie Funster
Listed as #39 over on dVerse Poets-Open Link Tuesday

The Method To

image borrowed from bing

the method to

the method to
picking blackberries
and the pace
at which you
move right along
those tumbling
rely on
knowing exactly
whom you are up
against: rabbits,
the occasional
deer, and – depending
on the time of
day, more or less
worrisome –
the neighbors’ kids

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Monday, November 28, 2011

For Emily

image borrowed from bing

Doug Palmer has always had a love affair
with Emily Dickinson. One day I inquired,
"Why do you have a Jones for a bag of bones?".

Over on dVerse Poets
they did a tribute to Miss Emily, and
posted her poem, "Because I Could Not
Stop For Death". Doug was so inspired
that he wrote a paean to Emily himself:

For Emily

"Ooh, I love Emily! -
I would not wait for death -
I was running at full speed -
Along fourteenth avenue -
Where a bus ran over me."

"I would not stop for the stop sign -
Tho it kindly stopped for me -
The motorcycle cop gave -
Some advice to me for free -

Do not do that again she said -
In a stern and serious voice -
Because it is a law young man -
It is not a choice -

So I saluted and capitulated -
And promised never again -
While, in my head, the words ran free -
Fat chance, cutie pie -
Fat chance."

Doug Palmer

Posted on his Facebook page, and mine.

Back To The Wall

image borrowed from bing

Back To The Wall

He liked this spot,
when he wasn't too tired
to get there,

felt at ease with the traffic,
echoed in harmony,
waved at strangers.

Too kind to notice
furrowed brows,
sharp tuts, dull tongues,

the rattling roof
over his head,
his wall against the back.

We wanted a bench
in his memory,
a place for others

to rest and read
the closing pages
of his world.

He loved this sofa,
when he was too tired
to get there.

Now it's yours,
although we had to burn
the cushions.

Martin T. Hodges

Posted over on his site Square Sunshine
Listed as #35 over on Magpie Tales 93

Creature Comforts

image borrowed from flickr

Creature Comforts


A red couch sits beneath the freeway overpass. Nicer than what you would expect of street furniture, but nothing most affluent would want sitting in their living room or would dare invite guests to sit upon. Denizens of the street have less concerns with what others may think. A free place to lay your head is treasured, all the more so if it bears some comfort.

Scrawled on the wall in dripping red spray paint, where those entering its lair will clearly see, are the words 'BeWare Couch!!'


"Hey! Hey! What do you think you doin man?"

Startled, Joe raises his eyes from their view of the next square of sidewalk, the one after the one he was currently crossing, which came after many others since being rousted from his place behind a dumpster on Twelfth Street. Everything he owns is stuffed in plastic grocery bags tied together and affixed to an old broken broom handle. A small bit of blue rubber that once coated the whole think provides little comfort for the hands that now carry it.

A ratty man, hair nesting in large fern-like growths at odd angles on his head and eyes of angry bees ran arms waving up the asphalt toward Joe, screaming. Pants that are several sizes too small inch closer to the mans knees as he raises each leg high as a flamingo before bringing it down to slap the asphalt. Slap-slap, slap-slap. Each footfall a double tap due to disengaged soles that hang like dog tongues.

"I said what you doin?" the man repeats, through chipped yellow teeth filling the puckering gash of his mouth, though his hands do most of the talking.

"Looking for a place to sleep," Joe mumbles, continuing to move forward despite the crazed man.

"Don'chu go sittin on dat couch, da couch is not the sitting kind, eatchu up n' ruin yo mind," his fingers dance as if to cast a spell, moving in ways knuckles should not.

"What couch," Joe begins but before he can finish the man is on him, all arms and legs, tugs and pulls, no punches.

Joe collapses under the surprising weight, the stick flying from his hands as the tries to gain purchase to pull the man off of him. Old mustard and vinegar smells run down Joe's tongue, his gag reflex taking over from there. The man's hands push into his face driving it into the grit of the road, the small ledge of the sidewalk creases Joe's back. The burst bags of his possessions spill their entrails in puddles of shirts, an old can rocks. Steaming vomit chars his throat and sprays across the grey black toward the yellow line down the middle.

"I tell's you no couch, why you make me hava do dis," the man's fetid breath leaks into the hollows of Joe's cheek.

Sepia pictures of a swing set, his little girl in a billowy dress, with a gap tooth grin fill Joe's eyes, forcing a tear from the corner. The pressure on his head, in his head is suffocating and he succumbs to the shadows that laugh as they overtake him.


"Honey, did you see that man on the couch?"

"What couch dear? I am trying to focus, the only reason I took this way is because someone took too much time selecting the right jewelry to accompany her dress tonight. If there was a couch, it was probably some bum. The city needs to clean up their mess, it only encourages them."

The car settles into silence, its headlights slashing the night toward more civilized sections.


Clouds. An ocean. Joe is floating. His bones no longer hurt as they grate against each other inside his flesh. Spreading his arms he relaxes, letting the waves take them where they want. His finger finds something semi-solid. A bag? Slimy and cold. Tight weave cloth, rough, a stick, coil in his back. His dirty body.

Awake once more, Joe only moves his eyes, surveying where he is. His feet burn from loss of circulation, propped on the arm at one end of---a couch? One arm rests across the top, a used condom under one finger. He pulls the hand to his chest and checks but the old rope belt is still cinched tight at his waist. He rolls to his side, wincing as he puts his back firm against the back of the couch.

Across the road, against the opposing concrete wall, the crazed man that attacked him crouches. The man's long fingers dig in a ball of aluminum, pulling bits of something then bringing it to his mouth. He hums and chews, licking his greasy fingers, before turning his head to look at Joe.

"I tells you dat couch is bad noose. Shoulda listen. Mama sed listen. Da couch is hungry doe. No time ta listen."

"What are you talking about?" Joe croaks the words, pain coming alive along his body like red ants, but unable to muster the energy to move.

The man is crossing the road on all fours, eyes wide, yellow as the teeth. Joe sighs hard, wanting to escape but his muscles unwilling to answer his call. The man is close, his hand crawls on Joe's cheek, turning the head to look directly at him.

"De couch is hungry," the man laughs, a mixture of screeching tires and steel drums then retreats back across the street.

He is picking once more at the aluminum, when Joe feels the first tugs at his lower back, then the gnawing and begins to scream.


A red couch sits beneath the freeway overpass. Nicer than what you would expect of street furniture.

Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One
Listed as #75 over on Magpie Tales 93

A Family of Drill

image borrowed from bing

a family of drill

a family of drill
bits always sticks together
more often than not

in my dad’s repertoire, each
one harbors a distinct voice

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

We Talk About The

image borrowed from the past

we talk about the

we talk about the
weather, and how
sunlight cuts
into the past, bearing
down on history
without as much
accuracy as blinding
confidence. and so,
in this way,
we tend to stick
to the weather

Yi Ching Lin

Posted over on her site Yi's Bits

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Signs of Life

image borrowed from flickr

Signs of Life

a ruddy imprint on the bricked underpass
one tobacco-tainted sofa, sans cushions
deemed passe haute couture for some
while others spring on the posh decor

laurie kolp

Posted over on her site Conversations With Laurie
Listed as #11 over on Magpie Tales 93

A Walk on the Wild Side

image borrowed from bing

A Walk on the Wild Side

Where is the verse
that comes from the wild,
emotion untrammelled
by reason's control?

Where is the paint
to colour the landscape
that rivers of feeling
have carved through the brain?

Where is the song
like a tropical storm
exploding on beaches,
unleashed on the ears?

Where are the thoughts
in verse or in prose
that undermine everything
everyone knows?

Where are the barbarous
artists untamed
lost on the waves
that arouse, not explain?

Where is the dance
and the whirl of the dancer
blurred by the fury
of motion unchecked?

Where are the rhythms
to flame the tame brain
and torch all the body parts
over again?

Where is the beat,
deep, resounding , a chorus,
a chorus of hearts,
of hearts in extremis?

Where are the purples
besmirching the whites,
the leaps out of heaven
that leave you in hell?

Where are the beasts
to roam through our culture
to trample the brush
and savage the lions?

the leftover mindsets
our attics begrime,
the fossils and cliches -
all threats in their time?

Dave King

Posted over on his site Pics and Poems
Listed as #44 over on dVerse Poets

Counting Teeth

image borrowed from  mark kerstetter

Counting Teeth

You were over six feet tall
but never made it to 99,
a man, a dynamo. I read that
you cried, wanted to be held like a child.
You helped bring yourself down,
but they killed you,
there can be no doubt.

The dead kill the living
throughout history, mere ripples
on the surface of placid humanity.
It’s all written in a zombie novel somewhere,
soon to be seen in a local movie theater,
soon to be eaten with the dust
of fallen suns,
mixed with shit and scum,
casually tossed in the fan.

The imaginary is taken for real,
and the real for fake,
and one day the real Borg will completely
replace the lost links
in the dead databases of today’s categories.
Complete connection will be complete
disconnection to the past,
and no Wild will compare
to the Lost that will prevail.

And it’s all good, you say, roll
over the concrete expanse skim-coated over
the ancient wilds of mind best
forgotten, you’re truly alive now.

But it’s not all good to me.
I don’t fit into the plan.
Call me luddite or philistine,
it little matters which, the result is the same:
a fall into the margins
where the last cries are
mashed with Baboon Blue
and Bengal Tiger Red to become
the grey of last year’s color.

I won’t plug into you.
You won’t fuck my mind.
I won’t work for you, won’t run
your tired treadmills
with my Flintstone feet.
All my avatar cutouts are sodden
in the rain that rolls down glass facades
and cheeks alike, over distended bellies,
pepper-sprayed makeshift tents, this year’s model
and the quivering gunman’s hand.

I’m tired running to stay out
of your race, of proving I’ve nothing
to prove, of putting out like a shameless whore,
birthing babies no one wants
as mountain meadows cover over
yet again with wildflowers.

Stand up and take notice:
your loves me loves me not mentality
has as much place in that field
as your poetic ooze in your
sector of the grid. One foot in,
one foot out, until your ability to write
the autobiography never written
—the one, justified—
is bitten off with your last
counting tooth
in your last

Mark Kerstetter

Posted over on his site the Bricoleur
Listed as #10 over on dVerse Poets

More Wild Rumpus

image borrowed from brian miller

More Wild Rumpus Than Late Night Infomercials
Trying To Sell You Video

GRooooWL all you want, nothing wild is left
our elders were felled for suburbs & shopping malls,
they make cages comfortable these days, cause
tamed animals cause no trouble but must be coaxed
to procreate to further the existence, their own
and the myth---

Where the Wild Things Are was never a manifesto
for revolutionaries but the world needs monsters
to wild rumpus the streets, not the ones we have
been left with to run the zoo and tell us to feel
at home here behind iron bars, Sendak said it was
about children mastering feelings, not numb from
losing them---

Do you remember the stars, God, they were so vast
the night we sat and dreamed a life, your eyes
contained them in swirling mass, sparks passing
twixt n'tween fingers gracing each one to another,
and time was an elastic band we stretched til it
SnApPeD with the sun rise?

Who domesticated us? Did they neuter us at night
while no one was watching? Who watches even now
to ensure our children fall in line like the rest?
Did the black rhino know he would become extinct?
So big, so strong and yet---

The Mayan calendar ends next year and mama nat forgot
to buy them a new one for Christmas, the impENDing
apocalypse might be the stimulus this economy needs,
what all the canned goods to stock up and army surplus
or maybe they just wanted to leave it open so we can
interpret ourselves, where we go from here---

when did you last dance, for no reason? For reason
has nothing to do with it, don't blame a limp synapse---

Let me draw you a map on a napkin, don't wait
for the world to change, to fit, it wont and will leave
you disappointed, eat all the puzzle pieces you want
for breakfast but you will never truly feel whole,

the wild things they know this,
if they are going to live they must slip
silent through high grass, it's easier to hunt in packs
and always go for the neck, only then will you feel
life's pulse on your tongue---

Brian Miller

Posted over on his site Way Station One
Listed as #1 over on dVerse Poets

Red is the Color

image borrowed from bing

Red is the Color

Asleep on the red sofa,
cushions soaked with urine,
tucked tight beneath the freeway,
ratty sleeping bag covering
the tracks between her dirty toes;
adrift in a lovely meth dream,
she became

a Cherokee princess, her long wet hair
shining by a quiet pool beneath a
magic waterfall, the sound of the traffic
flow merging with her illusions, playing
a wooden flute in perfect chorus
with the Disney bird-chatter in the glen,

greeting a smiling morning, its golden
shafts of sunlight piercing the thick
canopy of conifers, her dark lids twitching
with REM freedom, as she felt
the flush of first love, her mouth
on the reed reflecting her joy,
her fetching visage shimmering
in the deep clear water beside her;

while robins, jays, and sparrows flitted
about in tempestuous bird tag,
bouncing on low branches, barely
hearing the pair of crows pecking
at the scabs on her exposed feet.

Glenn Buttkus

November 2011

Listed as #26 over on Magpie Tales 93

Would you like to hear the author read this poem to you?

This Used To Be My Old Sofa

image by christine donnier-valentin

this used to be my old sofa

Now it has become
a love narrative
something conceptual

strangely enough
it has taken on the shape
of plump lips

I find myself compelled
to take running leaps
airborne for at least a minute

before landing
between the cushions
in the crease of your smile

tess kincaid

November 2011

Posted over on her site Life at Willow Manor
Listed as #1 over on Magpie Tales 93

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Seeing Red

Today the Mars Science Laboratory has blasted
off for a six year journey to the red planet
Mars. We will be looking for microbiotic and
microscopic proof of "life" on Mars. This put
me in mind of all the perceptions we have had
over the last hundred years about our neighbor,
the fourth planet in the solar system, one third
the mass of earth. So here is a pictorial that
will mix science, astrology, fiction, and
science fiction.