By Gerard Sarnat
1. “Super Soccer Stars”
While my daughter hibernates
incubating her second newborn,
toddler Liav who rules the roost
with us alone at home like he is
Attila the Hun
when I take him to neighborhood classes
to get suddenly sticky Honey out of
Ma’s hair, this barely terrible two-er turns
toward untoward clingy milquetoast
wants milky ba-ba
as surrounding mainly 3-year-olds
most of whom know nada about
heading, chesting, kneeing, kicking
balls our boychick learns as normal
at the feet of his adored ex-warrior
Israeli now US Abba
still absolutely won’t tolerate shrinking
violet of a non-violent firstborn son
whose hidden brain seems to palely
blend into the gym ‘stead of flowering
like Dad did in IDF* galaxy.
*Israel Defense Force
2. Holmes Sweet Home: Confessions Of An Ex Porn Star
Since May 21, 2010, I’ve send 499 emails
to a friend I’ve never met
who lives up the coast in a camp in a valley
in Santa Barbara County.
The bedroom community town has a flower festival,
pops orchestra, legitimate theater
plus wine tasting but its economy is primarily based
on Vandenberg Air Force Base
which houses LGM-30 Minuteman intercontinental ballistic missiles
and Lompoc Prison that used to be called Club Fed
and was where George Clooney’s supposed to be in the 1998 movie
Out of Sight also starring Jennifer Lopez.
After about three years the two of us became so close
that I offered to come
up to visit on weekends which were the only times
which were authorized.
I applied for conjugal visits that took two years
to get okayed then it took another chunk
to get married and Wednesday’s the release date
for my man-slaughterer to come home.
3. Encomium: In The Stars
I never planned was
stumbling into Bubbe.
Bumbler had been taken
in by some other girls’
but bumping into
my half century partner
has turned out to be by far
luckiest lightning ever hit me:
her temperament, father’s
then PhD in parenting
skills qualify you dear wife
as our Queen of Generativity.
4. Mad Dog” Mattis
Pretty much everybody agreed no Secretary of Defense
Designate could do a better job destroying tough enemies
of the US -- not blinking about nuclear winterizing Korea.
Scholarly but battle-tested enough that getting bogged
down in fog of war is only a last alternative, our country
is was fortunate this four-star general is was at the helm.
Now that you’ve resigned from running the Pentagon,
I have one question: what’s the plan to keep
President Trump away from toggling the red button?
5. Jesus H. Christ Out On Highway 61
“…When the jelly-faced women all sneeze Hear the one with the mustache say, "Jeeze I can't find my knees…"
Nobel Laureate Bob Dylan, “Visions Of Johanna”
from the Blonde On Blond album, 1966
Even though everybody knows H stands for Hebrew
we star-crossed Madison Avenue marketing masterminds
really blew our biggest Jewish account ever
coming up with the Star of David’s
too complex two inverted triangle graphics, while gentile
boosters sent a simple cross up Christmas Tree Lane’s
flagpole along with concocting that loving straight-shooter
Jesus whose icon even got away with hippy long hair
whereas Zimmerman’s mishigas g-d warned Abe,
“The next time you see me comin', you better run"
which combined with love-hate relationships
with a dark-haired only sib named Joan, plus requesting my kids
to play Bobby’s music as I am lowered
into the ground, leads this usually not musically
oriented physician to feel quite profoundly affected.
Then ask the stars
By David Thorpe
Then ask the stars,
their trillion years of wisdom
might reveal the answer to the riddle,
which taunts the sanity of your mind0
Then search the endless universe,
its myriad of heavenly bodies
might guide you to the cosmic oracle,
patiently awaiting your perseverance
Then plead with the Aurora Borealis
to brighten still this heavenly phenomenon,
and shed light on the incomprehensible,
hidden in the darkest corner of the arctic
A distracted dragon-fly flusters in your ear,
the better to accept my confession,
a declaration of an oath before a sacred altar,
made without a compromise
David Thorpe ©®
A Truth in Poetry
Poetic Prose by Raymond Greiner
Sighted my first robin yesterday. A cold day and the bird seemed unaffected as it hopped gingerly in quest of some hearty insect just beneath the soil’s surface. Nice feeling.
The ancient Roman calendar speaks of the “Ides Of March” soon to arrive on the 15th. Doesn’t mean much during these days, as I read the news I feel a sense of beware from moment to moment as if treading on loose gravel. Won’t change much as current conditions display ongoing negativity in all directions as a global social entity. So, I feed the critters, do daily walks with Venus and Oriana and tread the gravel path in a state of ecstasy regardless with a sense of good fortune to be breathing.
Our prime dictator “Money” remains prominent and controlling as I observe the great interest in “scratch off” lottery tickets when I go into a convenience store. The dream of financial wealth remains prominent among societal design. You can buy your big house and new cars and live shoulder to shoulder with the gentry. How fun.
My good girl “Snowflake” is a Great Pyrenees and is the most amazing dog I’ve ever known. One morning during feeding time it was -10 degrees and she was playing with a stick on the frozen pond. The game stopped when she spotted me with her food bucket. She sleeps outside on the snow and rarely goes into her doghouse. If only we humans were as resilient.
The American political system is best described in one word, “chaotic”, and seems to worsen daily. Denuclearization is a prime topic as Trump feebly attempted to negotiate with the North Korean dictator, who is only using the idea as a pawn in a lethal game of political manipulation. How grand it would be to completely eliminate atomic weaponry from the entire globe. Not yet possible, but if we do light the fuse on this complete ignorance it may serve to give denuclearization more attention.
I’m writing a new novel. These novel projects consume my life. The iconic historical novelist James Michener said of his writing, “I can’t wait to go to sleep so I can wake up and begin writing again.” Sums it up well. Michener’s Japanese wife was his editor. Wish I could find such a pot of gold.
I didn’t write a single creative word until age 62 as I was far too obsessed with making money. If I could repeat my life, money would be placed far on the back burner. First published essay Pond Food in Canary Literary Journal. First short fiction Wolf Spirit published in Quail Bell Literary Magazine. What a thrill.
“The voice of destiny often sings off key and out of tempo like a catbird singing in a thorn bush then the sky opens and clouds of doubt vanish.”
From my short fiction Myrna’s Story.
Now is the Time
A collaboration by Hank Beukema
And Alexandra H. Rodrigues
The thread that connects us is very fine
Raises daily doubts about what will happen in time.
Time will go on, that much we know
Does it push us or pull us, do we stop or do we go?
Merciless passes day after day
We remain in doubt about what and what not to say
Ever forward we go blindly through the dark.
Do we leave a trail, do we make a mark?
At no time will I ever your trust refuse
Not every boldness or slip of the tongue has an excuse
The world takes our boldness and tries to knock it down
Calls us foolish till we feel like a clown.
Truth is an illusion, written in the sand!
How much we believe is in our hand
Often the mind vacillates between now and the past
Busy accusations along our future paths are cast.
The answers bring with them more questions
There will always remain a doubt
Have we found the way in or are we left out?
Either one of us secretly for an answer does wait.
Time has come to no longer accept further delay
Let’s move on together or from each other walk away!
We gamble with lives, we gamble with hearts
Do we know if and when a deeper meaning starts?
The Master Has All
the Right Answers
Poetry Collection by Alan Catlin
Questions of Space
for L. Cohen and V.H. Adair
Did they sit together
in silent meditation?
the over 90 nearly blind
late in life lady poet and
lady killer, singer, scribe.
Did they sort through
the garbage for flowers,
watching ants on melon?
or are they just sharing
a strange congruence
of time and space?
the human geography
of a Zen Monastery,
the silence between
written lines? the encroaching
darkness that shapes
The songs without words?
Mother called the hotel
pool the old swimming hole,
saw the world through dark
glasses as something impenetrable,
unknowable as the mermaids
she spoke of as her sisters of
Babies born here, on these virgin islands,
were christened in chlorine as all true,
water babies must be, even those
who saw her speaking after dark to
static shadows and heard the answers
to questions impossible to pose.
Questions and Answers
In the bar the man
orders Genny Cream
from the bartender
Squares the label just so
on the coaster so the label
faces toward him
Picks up the bottle
A six pack in an hour
Weeks later, at Omega,
the server sees the man
as Buddhist meditation
leader sitting cross legged
head bowed, silent
The server sits in the room
bows his head, closes his eyes
cannot cross his legs
The server has all
the wrong questions
The Master has all
the right answers
Her name was on every No Call list
known to man. Said she was: Tracy,
Trixie, Lexi, Tonya, Ashley, Caitlin,
Emma, Tessa, one name for every day
of the week and two for Sunday.
Had outstanding warrants in seven states
that authorities knew of. Had more low
level felonies than a computer could keep
track of and whatever she was on made her seem
as if she had been whaled on by a Toxic
Avenger with a mean streak and heavily into
vengeance is mine. Replied to direct questions
in a kind of gibberish only someone with
a waterlogged brain would say, something
that sounded like the last hours of someone’s
life dripping from a leaky faucet into a
stainless steel sink in a locked room where
no one ever goes.
Student of Philosophy 1926
after a photo by August Sander
Once you are known as
the kind of man who asks
questions and who expresses his
opinions freely, you are the kind
of man who is followed wherever
There are no definitive answers
to the problems a perpetual student
poses. In a world where everything
is brown or yellow, this is a dangerous
path to follow.
When they shoot him, they will
do it twice to make sure he is dead.