Thursday, September 12, 2019

It's Another Special Day

Alexander Moskovar,
a salamander of ill repute,
steps warily today.

The humans say that on this day
two larger evils intersect
and blend their forces to create
an even greater evil shape
that walks the land invisibly
and without passion, hate, or malice,
flicks misfortune from its fingers
as easily as you or I
might cough, or brush aside an insect
landing on your arm.

These flecks of probability,
tossed like rocks into a stream,
disturb time's flow
and instigate corrupt diversions
where the passing rodent, beast, or man
may find their usual day disrupted
and suffer what we like to call an accident,
a whim of fate, or divine retribution for
some sin we once performed.

Alexander knows this well, but hopes
that his small venture will result
in furnishing a bit of food
for him, and not for something else
that might consider him a treat.

I'd stay to watch, but something tells me
that I'd best be moving on.
Shadows in the forest may
consider me a treat as well
and accidents have happened here
especially on such a day
when Fridays and Thirteenths combine.

Thursday, March 7, 2019

Snowflake II

Transformed, floating, falling;
buffeted by winter winds,
swirling in a swarm of others.
Distantly they look like me,
but as they pass I see that they
like me are not alike; their wings
describe an icy pattern that is
functional and beautiful,
yet not my own.  We each excel
and glide within an unknown plan
that unifies us, yet transcends
the limits of what we might know.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Snowflake I

Here in the high thin air,
seeded by a mote of dust,
I begin to crystallize.
I have vague memories
of a windswept sea
and of cold stony mountains
that I soared far above,
too young to be born.

"Stay with me," said the wind.
"I have carried you so far,
and don't want to lose you."
"It's my time," I said,
as I began to slip out of her grasp,
my white lacy wings becoming
a burden to her
an escape for me.

Friday, September 7, 2018

The Catfish King

[Written in June 2016 and submitted to that year's Maria W. Faust sonnet contest.]

Gray catfish, you who probe the waters deep
With barbels flung across the silted floor
What morsels do you find? What tastes sublime
Delight your gustatory sense, and bring
You memories fond of great repasts of slime?

The muck wherein a sullen worm may sleep
May carry hints of shrimp, of albacore,
And echo days, when in your piscine prime,
None dared to challenge you, a mighty king,
Who ruled a watery empire maritime.

Yet empires fall to dust, and you, once king,
Are now as Lear, besmirched with mud and grime;
A lunatic, who once made choirs sing,
Who now meanders, lost, at dinnertime.

Of mice and rocks

[First published on 2017-04-02 as @Maud_Pie_poet in 3 connected and numbered tweets.]

Place at your left hoof
A rock.
Place at your right hoof
A mouse.
If you close your eyes for just a minute,
Which of these will remain?

The mouse has hurried away
Eager to feed
Eager to breed
Eager to live life quickly
Before the claws and the teeth
Bring life to an end

But the rock
Waits at your left.
It will see billions of mice
And millions of ponies
Before it becomes dust.
Listen, then, to the rock.

Rock face

[First published 2017-04-07 as @Maud_Pie_poet in connected tweets]

Some days I am flinty, standing tall
Dark and hard. My obsidian face
Reflects your gaze
I am impenetrable.

Other days, I flow;
A windblown dune
Whose shape and location
Will not be the same tomorrow.

But today
I will be a canvas
Of newly dried sediment
Still moist and impressionable -

If the sandpiper skitters across me
I will feel his touch
And capture his passage,
for a time,
In hieroglyphic footprints.

If you happen to pass
Before the tide rises to wash them away
Please, send me a translation.
I do not speak Sandpiper.

Smoky Colts

[Written 2018-09-07 in reply to a cartoonist who portrayed our San Diego 1968 high school mascot, the Crawford Colt, as a pot-smoking hippie horse of a type that would have more likely been found in the San Francisco Bay area at that time.]

Horse of many colors,
wreathed with smoke that issues from
a controversial "weed"
while your one bridge burns behind you:
you are but a fantasy
of what our Crawford might have been
if "Diego" had instead
been a "Francisco" farther north.

Yes, our mascot frolicked here
in fields of fragrant grass,
but chewed and swallowed,
not inhaling.  Did we stronger grow?
Or did we too in later years
adopt that pony's happy grin
and wave a peace sign while enjoying
transcendental bliss?