Saturday, July 31, 2010

Time's Relativity

It bothered me that the city park's clock
Was wrong -- 10-minutes fast, "What's up with that!?"
I spat, and continued my morning walk...
Yet more proof that bureaucratic fat,
Fed by my taxes, can not manage a task
As simple as keeping correct time
Yet yearly it comes, efficiently, to ask
For more money, down to nickel & dime...

Just then, the morning siren blew,
At 8 o'clock sharp, as it's programmed to do,
That's when I looked down at my watch to see
The one with the wrong time, actually was me.

(Comment: I'm just glad I didn't go ahead and start a Tea Party movement about it. I could have been refudiated.)

In The Days Before SUVs

I remember all of us crowded in
The stationwagon-back-end space,
Like monkeys in a padded bin,
As we drove to a distant scenic place

Playing games with cards, and spying
License-plates, and singing songs
About beer bottles on the wall,
The time flew by without even trying...
Driving the country roads: two-laned, long-
Stretching concrete strips, westward lying,
And leading to nothing at all
But the promise of mountains and swimming and fun
Under a summer vacation sun.

And no I-Pods or cell phones or DVDs,
We did quite well without any of these...

(Thanks to G.H./"Imager" for the inspiration. Check out his Blog at:

Footfalls With Pisces

Morning health-ramble, middle-aged motion,
Calories to burn, scale to be faced,
Along a quiet seawall siding...
I glance down to the ocean,
To see I'm being paced,
By a sting-ray, quiet & gliding...

We jog together, fish and man,
It in the water, and me on land,
Opposite ends of evolutionary span...
For a momentary Zen,
Which may never happen again.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Ten Quotes From Napoleon Bonaparte

A leader is a dealer in hope.

A revolution is an idea which has found its bayonets.

A soldier will fight long and hard for a bit of colored ribbon.

A throne is only a bench covered with velvet.

Ability is nothing without opportunity.

An army marches on its stomach.

Glory is fleeting, but obscurity is forever.

He who knows how to flatter also knows how to slander.

History is a set of lies agreed upon.

I am sometimes a fox and sometimes a lion. The whole secret of government lies in knowing when to be the one or the other.

Old Edo Trail In Shioiri, Yokosuka

I walk up the 400-year-old road,
Which climbs, narrowly, through the green
Overgrown slope, rising above the quiet homes,
Still asleep, on a humid summer morning...
I imagine what it must have been,
The road, in the days before cars,
Where business, routine or urgent,
Was conducted on foot...
And boy, how they must have sweated,
On a morning like this,
Walking, with purpose, through the crow calls,
And walls of bamboo, to reach their
Goals and destinations and assignations...
I think they would have remembered
This small stretch of road, only
As something best completed, not repeated.


The last hydrangea, shaded, blue, protected,
By the large-leaf of an unknowing savior-plant,
Displays its improbable, beautiful, bloom,
In an isolated place, where the hot sun can't,
Dry and destroy the last thing connected
To spring, before the coming solstice doom.

Look Up!

Newspaper, spread & anchored by 4 rocks,
On the ground, next to the house entrance...
Swallow's nest in the eaves above.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

From The Back Of The Conference Room

To enable the miracle,
Of sleeping while seating,
The good lord invented,
The daily staff meeting.


Drowsy at the morning meeting,
Eyelids' weight unsupportable...
Second can of Red Bull.


There is something I should do,
Not that it's crucial or imperative...
But I'm suspended, I can't see it through,
Stuck in existential goo...
Deciding not to decide,
I fiddle with my fingers, and hide,
While the accounting draws near...
Eek! I'm fate's dangled marionette,
Slow-spinning in a neutral gear,
A protagonist in a lost narrative
Which no one will ever hear.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Morning Exercise

Out for a walk, sometimes slow-jog, on a pre-hot July morning,
The park is populated with roses, mostly wishing it was back in May,
And dazed-looking, pajama-clad denizens, who jerk-stop with scant warning,
Because the dogs, who drag them along, like to do it for play...
And the cars whoosh-by, too-urgent, metallic and swarming,
Past the army of cicadas who've waited beneath, 7 years, for this day.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Ghosts Inside My Head

Looking at the spot, there,
Where it happened long ago,
People pass who do not know...

I conjure-up a memory-ghost,
From inside my head somewhere --
That place which aches the most.

Sunday Morning Quasi-Haiku

Blurred memories of last night,
Blend-bounce in my hurting head...
Empty aspirin bottle.

- - - - - - - - - -

Summer! Bold-sunny and green,
Vibrant cicada songs...
But the heat is obscene.

- - - - - - - - - -

When women rule the world,
It will be a better place;
And men, relieved of burdens,
Will attend to the NASCAR race.

6 Quotes From Sir Laurence Olivier

(1) I take a simple view of life: keep your eyes open and get on with it.

(2) Living is strife and torment, disappointment and love and sacrifice, golden sunsets and black storms. I said that some time ago, and today I do not think I would add one word.

(3) Surely we have always acted; it is an instinct inherent in all of us. Some of us are better at it than others, but we all do it.

(4) The office of drama is to exercise, possibly to exhaust, human emotions. The purpose of comedy is to tickle those emotions into an expression of light relief; of tragedy, to wound them and bring the relief of tears. Disgust and terror are the other points of the compass.

(5) We ape, we mimic, we mock. We act.

(6) When you're a young man, Macbeth is a character part. When you're older, it's a straight part.

Potential Evil In A Hardware Store

The twin-edged stiletto dagger,
Blue-steeled and razor-sharp,
Displayed, on-sale, for $24.95,
Waits for its hand,
And the sad chance which will plunge it,
To taste muscle, fat, and blood.

Seated Dream

The arm chair is so comfortable
But, unaffordable,
In the furniture store.

Middle Aged Appetites

A man has many appetites,
Which line-up to be filled,
Feed the need, 'till sated,
Or petered out... Or thrilled...
But, by middle-age there's something,
Which leaves one drooling-dreamy,
An Italian meatball sandwich,
Beats a girl in a bikini.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Missing At The Westroads Mall

How can it be that the spot
Where a disgrunteled kid
Used a semi-automatic rifle,
While in the women's clothes section
Of Von Maur's,
To shoot and kill some people,
And then, himself,
Adding a punctuation mark to a crime,
Done with a gun,
Which we have the right to bear...
Well, how can it be,
That there's no memorial;
Nothing to remind us of the victims...
Are they better off forgotten?
Removed impediments
To Von Maur's sales.

Heavy Deja Vu

I drive down the same road
On which I cruised as a youth
And the radio plays a 70's song
Unheard for ages,
Fogotten so long...
But now it hits me,
With the sting of truth...
The melody takes me back to the day
And a younger, simpler way.

ElzoHarm Art (No. 11)

We are the Bug Boys, come knocking on your door
Don't be surprised we're standing here
Instead of crawling on the floor
Or buzzing near your ear
Like in our normal biosphere...

If you give us all your fruit and sweets
We won't come-round no more
Until sometime later, when we've won the war
Occupy the playgrounds and streets
Establish our insect elites
And run things from the Walmart Store

We are the Bug Boys, we bring good news
No need to fear or fret
With insect wisdom we know how to use
The planet you humans abuse
It's not too late, we'll save things yet...

But meanwhile you need to stay inside
Stay off the radios, swallow your pride,
Sit back and enjoy, the entomological ride...

July Moment In Omaha

I step up to the porch
Glance into the shrubbery...
Dancing, glowing, fireflies.

College Mom

She lays on the bed
Motionless, childless,
Asleep, akin to dead,
Because the nest
Now empty, instead
Of the active stress
Of parental worries,
Emotional flurries...
They're all gone today,
Or at least,
A phone-call away.

Summer Storm

The summer storm comes a rumbling
At 45 miles-per-hour landspeed...

A flat-land thrill indeed.

We hear it before we see it,
Sitting on lawn chairs,
Baked in the latent late-afternoon heat
From cemented driveway squares...

And when it comes,
It's a monster wall of gray-white cloud
Rolling towards us, with intent,
That would do a tsunami proud...

And then it HITS,
A cold-air slap of wind-shower,
That BLOWS-AWAY the heat
And humidity, with convective power,
Rain lashing the street!
Rumbles and lightning blasts!

So we sit and watch,
With shock and awe,
While it lasts.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Thank You Mick & Company

In Nineteen Hundred and Seventy One,
The Rolling Stones released
An album called "Sticky Fingers",
With a jacket image that lingers,
Its impact un-decreased…
Based on a Wharhol shot:
Too-tight jeans, with zipper undone,
Naughty, visceral, and hot --
A waist-level snap of nasty-fun…
Primo stuff for a young man’s wood,
And, yes, the songs were also good.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

It Came From Above

When you think about it, I guess,
We mammals emerged from the mess,
Following the massive impact-void
Left by an errant asteroid.

So put your faith in gods, if you must,
But remember our debt to cosmic dust.

A Bit Of Bird Wisdom

The sparrow, sweet-singing
On the green-leafy berm,
Looks fearsome & fierce
From the viewpoint of the worm.

Perspective On The Rat Race

Viewed from afar, at distance,
With separation... The blurry mix
Of actions, calls, and meetings,
Management's whims & insistence,
To follow the consultant's latest fix,
Thereby saving our corporate existence,
Ensuring we're up and competing,
Down-sized, restructured, and lean...
Well... It sucks, if you know what I mean.

10 Proverbs From Japan

1. A good husband is healthy and absent.

2. Fall seven times, stand up eight.

3. After victory, tighten your helmet strap.

4. Darkness reigns at the foot of the lighthouse.

5. A good sword is the one left in its scabbard.

6. First round, the man takes a drink; second round, the drink takes a drink; third round, the drink takes the man.

7. Getting money is like digging with a needle. Spending it is like water soaking into the sand.

8. If you believe everything you read, better not read.

9. If you want a thing done well, do it yourself.

10. Knowledge without wisdom is a load of books on the back of an ass.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sport Utility Vehicle

It's big and fast, and eats up gas...
A metallic cocoon on wheels,
Spawned from suburban rubber rooms,
Built on sedated squares of grass,
Where one lives, but never feels.

Loyal Soccer Fan

I love my team with heart and soul,
I yell for them, and paint my face...
But then the others score a goal,
And joy is gone without a trace.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

Magic Moment In A Park

I trudge around an ancient baseball ground,
For the fifth time, stepping over weeds,
Near the end of a day, when fireflies abound...
I pause in my circling to swat at a fly,
Then look-up, and am stunned to see what's around...
And above -- a priceless painting on high,
A cloudless cobalt sky, which the sunset leads
To a twilight glow-conclusion, devoid of sound,
Crisscrossed by golden shining vapor trails
The gifts of jets' propulsion needs...
Oblivious to the miracle I have found,
My daughters kick a ball and cry
To join them, but their urging fails
To dispel the magical moment in time,
When a heavenly light-show was briefly mine.