Monday, February 13, 2017

Don't share these poems

Sonnet No. 18—A First Draft
with a nod to William Shakespeare
Shall I compare thee to an onion brown?
Thou art surely more wrinkled and more pale:
Its juice may cause a tear to tumble down,
and hands, for days, to reek a stench most stale;
Sometimes, too hot, the frying pan doth sear,
And then the oiled rings are quick to burn;
And supper's fare then leads not to good cheer,
For saddened palates poison tongues in turn;
But thy delicious wit, sharp as a knife,
Is more apt to bring laughter than a tear;
Thy fragrance, sweet, shall be no cause for strife;
Except when thou pass wind too close, I fear.
   So long as tongues can taste and nose can smell
   So long live onions, and live thee as well

by Michelle Green

Chocolates from the Portuguese 43
with a nod to Elizabeth Barrett Browning
How do I love thee? Let me taste the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My tongue can reach, when probing out of sight
For the last of the mousse in a crevasse.
I love thee in boxes or upon trays
Assorted flavors over which we fight.
I love thee freely, though money is tight;
I love thee purely, in an endorphic haze.
I love with addiction and abuse
For my old griefs and with my long lost faith.
I love thee with a lust I wish to lose
For my health sake, with diabetic breath,
Pancreas failing until my dark muse,
Chocolate, grants a most delicious death.

by Bartholomew Barker
both in volume 5 issue 2

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Monday, February 6, 2017

For Love

The Compliant Wife

There once was a woman who'd sneeze
From pollen and flowers and trees.
Her husband avowed
Her sneeze was too loud,
And begged for a sneeze that would please.

She covered her mouth tight in shame,
Pinched her nose each time the urge came,
But though she'd turn blue
Whatever she'd do,
The sneeze blew right out just the same.

She held her breath fearing divorce,
But nothing could hold back its course,
The pressure—it blew;
Out came the "A-Choo,"
Unleashing with hurricane force.

Her husband was knocked to the ground;
Four miles away he was found.
No more does he cry,
"The volume's too high,"
His ear drums were burst by the sound.

by Diane de Anda
in volume 5 issue 2

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Monday, January 30, 2017


Clerihews for a Famous Literary Sailor

Herman Melville
Was into whale kill,
So he wrote the famous Moby-Dick
Although harpooning was not his schtick.

Herman Melville
Couldn't spell well.
The real guy's name was Israel,
But Herman misspelled it, "Ishmael."

Herman Melville
Didn't sell well.
Thousands of Moby-Dick copies left over,
In his attic, basement, and Mom's, moreover.

Herman Melville
Fished for bluegill.
He said it was almost as fun as whale
If you don't consider matters of scale.

Herman Melville
Visited Nashville.
Where Moby-Dick didn't get him too far
'Cause he couldn't sing or play guitar.

Herman Melville
Scared a Paris demoiselle.
She said, "Mon cher, with you it's wrong.
Your Moby-Dick is just too long."

in volume 5 issue 2

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Monday, January 23, 2017

Bugged Out

Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Cockroach
with a nod to Wallace Stevens
The biggest ones move fastest.
Fast is how they grow to big.

I was of twelve minds,
like twelve cockroaches
when the lights go on.

A smashed cockroach
has all the charm

an unsmashed one lacks.

A man and a woman are one.

A man and a woman and a cockroach
are three. In motion. Circular.

This too is charming:

three roaches afloat in roach killer
still and glistening.

But one roach is doing the backstroke.

My friend the gourmet used to tell me
we must live and let cockroaches live.
When a roach sniffed her soufflé,
curled its lip, and sashayed away,

she too became a killer.

A roach hotel is a euphemism
but it beats

pounding them with your shoes in the night.

I used to love "La Cucaracha."
Now I love only the line,

"ya no puede caminar."

There is a new sonar device
for killing cockroaches. Soon
they will ally with bats.

This morning in my dictionary
I found a colony of cockroach.
Mark my words,

they are learning to read

in order to take over the world.

If you were a cockroach
and liked yourself,

you could be quite a person.

It had rained all night,

and it was going to go on raining,
but when I heard the patter,

I thought it was the cockroach
crossing a stack of old newspapers.

by Diane Kendig
in volume 5 issue 2

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Monday, January 16, 2017

Getting Along

The Enemy of my Enemy

The enemy of my enemy is my friend.
The friend of my enemy is still going to be my enemy.
The friend of the friend of my enemy is pretty much also my enemy.
The friend of the enemy of my enemy is my friend, I think.
The enemy of the enemy of my enemy gets us right back to that enemy thing.
The enemy of my enemy's enemy's enemy is all right by me.
The girlfriend of my enemy is Melinda.
Even the anemone of my enemy is my enemy.
The anemone of my friend is like a sea cucumber to me.
The enemy of my friend is my enemy, but I don't get so worked up about it.
The enemy of the enemy of my friend should not be confused with the enemy of my enemy, but they're both friends. One of them wears glasses and drives a Prius, but I can't remember which one.
The friend of my friend is okay I guess. They seem to spend a lot of time together. Frankly, I don't get what my friend sees in him. He spits when he talks, he laughs at his own jokes, and he has B.O.
The friend of my friend's friend is actually a pretty good guy. It turns out that we play in the same beer-league.
The friend of my enemy's enemy isn't exactly a friend, but I've talked to him like a million times without ever knowing his name.
The frond of my friend is not my fern, but he expects me to water it every Tuesday? Why didn't he ask his other so-called friend?
The arch-enemy of my team is the Heat of Miami
So, to my envy, my friend asks his other friend to the skybox of his company.
This, after I watched his dog over a long weekend.
So, if the enemy of my enemy is my friend
And the friend of my friend is my enemy
Then the enemy of the friend of my friend is my friend
And if the friend of my friend is the enemy of my enemy, then maybe my enemy is not such a bad guy.
My empathy for my enemy is the end of my enmity.
My antipathy for my enemy was really myopia.

by Stephen Starr
in volume 5 issue2

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