Monthly Archives: November 2010

Thoughts at the Family Christmas Party

If normal is relative

there is no normal

if I’m a relative to you

I’m not normal,

relative you,

normally my relative,

no stranger to genuine sarcasm

mocking mockingbirds,

or disingenius genius genes without pockets,

genes expanding like the jeans of Uncle Norm as he packs more

buttertarts into the blackhole he calls his mouth;

his girth expanding like the universe itself,

recreating new norms and molecules called Uncle Norm,

rippling fat at the bend in the nexus of the solar plexus.

But, fat is thin if you’re a Rubens.

You shoulda been born 400 years ago, chubs,

you’d be relatively beautiful.

Shadow Puppets

One star above all other stars

though no higher nor lower the other stars.

The sun loves this earth

cause it is closer than all other stars.

We worship this intimacy in picnics and bikinis

and kisses at sunset

till night gives light to a universe of celestial bodies mingling among the heavens.

Still, the sun haunts us in her absence

as shadows dance macabre dreams

that will seem so serene in the morning.

Song On Mute

All the words I’ve ever said are all the words I’ll ever say

they come from all the books I ever read, but, the order I’ll rearrange,

like the dictionary contains every thought ever made on each page

it’s simply when they’re said how they’re said that separates the fools from the sage.

And I believe that karma spins around

I believe that the words mean more when they’re sound.

Like taking an abstract painting and giving it meaning beyond the art

for its own sake we choose to make right from wrong from the heart

but only the fool tries to find reason there when love lights the way

and not even the sage can find the right words to say.

Words are seeds grown in the sun and grown in the rain

when set to music, when they’re sung, they’re flown off the page.

Words are price tags giving value to my music,

but when it comes to singing about love these words are worthless.

And I believe that karma spins around

I believe words mean more when they’re sound.

And for me to sing I love you won’t mean anything

until I hear it sung back to me.

Cause I believe karma spins around

and I believe words mean more when they’re sound.

Oh, Canada

Canada is my home and native land

where ‘eh’s a question, not a vowel.

Where we pray in prairies that are grand

with Winnipeg where wicked wind will howl.

Hockey’s our national passion

we like to watch it for the fights.

Staying warm is our best fashion

cause, summer’s a luxury, not a right.

This land is home to 34 million persons

90% live within 100 miles of the border

and the remaining 10%

have all moved to Florida.

And into war we so rarely delve

we don’t spend so much on ships and tanks

we did win the War of 1812

but don’t tell the Yanks.

William Lyon MacKenzie King was a mad hatter

for 22 years he held the P.M.’s post.

Nuts, when he decided a national matter

he would first have a meeting with his dead dog’s ghost.

The P.M. gets elected with 38% of votes

and our senate is not elected, they are appointed.

We have a Queen, she’s born to be on the twenty dollar notes

we’re lead by these strangers and we wonder why we’re disappointed

by a government most of us didn’t vote for

by a government run by corporate puppets

who speak for the rich when we want to help the poor

it’s like surfing for porn and getting the Muppets.

But, we have got free health care and look, we are so proud

why don’t the USA, it makes you wonder, but,

here, rich or poor, sick or shot, all of us are allowed

take a number, they’ll get to you when your number’s up.

Oh, Canada, you’re a great place to live, wonderful to die

and at least dying’s free and easier than comedy

patriotism’s following orders blind, not asking why

keeping the electorate from voting is the key.

Dead Dog Years

When my dog dies I’ll fly to Europe

cried the psychopath to his dog, Fred.

Measuring time in dead dog years

neutering the present from the past.

Like reading a diary entry of a bad dream had years before;

finally seeing what’s beneath

seeing the monsters for what they’re for.

When my fish dies I’ll try sushi,

never tried raw fish before.

Who needs to fly to Japan to see kabuki,

got a dog to care for.

And my little dog I’ll pick up your shit cause you pick up my life;

my little dog I love you more than my ex-wife.

And my little dog it won’t hurt a bit when it’s your time to die

cause, my little dog, to Europe I’ll fly.

Pointillism

Black crow perched atop a church cross

looking down on the ground, what does he see?

Do you think he sees the difference between

the church and the Buddhist cemetery?

And the higher he flies the more he sees

that the ground doesn’t see the difference between

religion, rooftops or countries.

But I was born with blue eyes but they turned green

and they can see the difference between a Christian and a Buddhist cemetery.

My eyes never weep over a black crow who falls from a tree.

And the higher he flies, the more he sees

that the ground doesn’t see the difference between

religion, roof tops or cemeteries.

Left Tea Leaves

Imagination mixed with memory is this toxic tonic to stir up all our soured moments

fingering through photos

and soon I forget what came first, the memory or the sentimentality

dog-eared pictures proving I was here and I am there

simultaneously

both in and out of our universe

between the love and the hate of not being loved.

You get that? I don’t.

Insanity is repeating the same mistakes,

but here we go

rolling down hill like Jack and Jill

after reading their own nursery rhyme;

“Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water.”

“Oooh, I like the sound of this,” Jill said, tucking her crown into the crook of Jack’s arm as

he read.

And I can’t let you go, though, you let me go years ago.

Your memory is stronger than me.

Still, imagination is brilliant; I know, cause I make it.

A nightcap of sentimentality;

a tea made with the leaves of the leavings you left

to seep as rain water through the fall leaves

through the gutters of my mind.

A Haiku For Every Color

HAIKU FOR RED

Marx, Mao and Lenin.

Little Red Riding Hood’s last

step in a bull ring.

ORANGE

My favorite fruit

You are Florida’s lifeblood.

You look bad on me.

YELLOW

Chirping Easter chick.

Rain blessed daffodils in Spring

I fear your beauty.

GREEN

New at poetry

richer than the emerald sea

how I envy you.

BLUE

We wish for blue skies

still we get little blue birds

perched on window sills.

PURPLE

A royal shiner

knighted by Queen’s rules boxing

color beets and beats.

A HAIKU FOR BLACK: A SHADE

Color funerals

give birth to notes on the page

playing requiem.

A HAIKU FOR WHITE: ALSO A SHADE

Blushing innocence

given carte blanche till white lies

snow ball avalanches.

BLACK AND WHITE AND READ ALL OVER

To reduce a day

to its primary colors

are dreams black and white.

The Title Has Nothing to Do with the Story

This boy wakes up and he’s a man. He’s wearing long pants and he’s near-sighted with longing dreams looking at a short future. Still, at heart he’s still a little boy, frightened at the very real world that had seemed so make-believe the night before.

“What happened?” he asks the cruel mirror mirror on the wall. “What am I supposed to do? Go to work? I don’t know if I can even spell, ‘work.’ Let’s see… w-o-r-k. Work. I guess if I can spell it I should go there and do it, wherever that is. Look at me, I’m dressed in a suit and tie. How’d I get the tie on? I can’t tie a tie, can I? I bet if I untied it, I couldn’t tie it back up.”

He stares intensely at the perfect windsor-knot choking out all innocence. He decides some things are better left tied up just as they are.

So, he picks up his briefcase with his initials monogrammed neatly in gold-leaf next to the combination lock which he doesn’t know the combination for, and walks out the door into a car he doesn’t know how to drive.

“What am I supposed to do? This looks so much more complicated than Pole Position on Atari.”

A force the little boy doesn’t recognize as his own, leads his hand into his jacket pocket and pulls out a key, inserts it into the ignition and the car roars to life.

“I think I’ll smoke a cigarette,” he says, pulling into a 7-11 (thank heaven), buying, unwrapping, then smoking his first cigarette, his first immature act as an adult. He hacks, coughs and wheezes his way to manhood, eyes watering. “This sucks,” he spits, but smokes the cigarette right down to the butt anyway.

Work is easier. He punches into his computer, logs on to a cyberworld flooded with boy-men just like him, who have no idea they are trading stocks with John@work, who only the night before had been the starting pitcher of his championship Little League team.

He makes money, he loses money, he doesn’t care. It is all make-believe.

Back home it turns out he is married. Though, he is sure he is still a virgin, he has a wife and two and a half kids. The other half is due in less than five months. The wife is sure it is a girl, but, he doesn’t care. Really, he doesn’t care about anything.

‘Heck,’ he thinks, ‘how can I care? How can I take stock in a world that lets you fall asleep dreaming of pitching for the New York Yankees underneath a Star Wars blanket, only to wake up in a suit and tie tied in a crisp, clean windsor-knot? Reality is more whimsical than my most childish fantasy.’

His wife asks him what he is thinking.

“I think I’m hungry,” he says, rising from the bed. He walks to the fridge to appease a sensation so simple, it is shared between the biology of both men and boys, who spend Sunday trading baseball cards, Sunday night dreaming of pitching for the New York Yankees, then wake up Monday, tie a crisp clean windsor-knot and go trade money back and forth with other men who shared the same dream.

Varanasi

Homeless sleep by the banks of the Ganges

the smoke from the bodies washes their hair.

I wonder if they’re dreaming of the fire

or does the fire dream of them?

I fear to tread between the sleeping and the dead

hypnotized by the fingers of the fire,

are they waving hello or goodbye?

Sending souls higher, higher, we’re traveling between pyre to pyre

picking up karma by the handfuls.

Or is life a school with no final exam?

I stand smoking watching the men tend the fires

with their bamboo poles, scraping the ashes into the Ganges

to float down stream to the sea.

And if the sea was heaven,

the same heaven that rained the Ganges, would it take me?

Cause under its breath I can’t breathe.

And if I swam in the Ganges, I fear parasites would swim in me.

So, I’ll stand between the smoke and the dreams

of the sleeping and the dead, smoking, wondering

what becomes of the ashes rained into the river

and how long it takes them to be carried out to sea.