Thursday, January 26

Sarah Kay

I've decided to open up my blog a bit.  It won't simply contain poetry of my own, but also works of art I manage to find in my occasional searching that I think is worthy of being shared.  I recently discovered a few channels on YouTube which are related to one another by their connection to the Bowery Poetry Club in New York City.  When the weather gets a little bit nicer, I'll be going there to enjoy some of these word wizards and anyone from my personal life who wants to come along is welcome.  Anyone else who is outside my personal life that would also like to go, I'd be more than happy to join you at a table.

Though these aren't my own works, if you enjoy the video or any other part of the blog, I'd ask you to share it with your friends and family on Facebook, Google+, or by e-mail.  I'm trying to nurture my small garden of followers!

This is a video from the Bowery I discovered while watching hours of spoken word poetry.  She is a beautiful poet, and though this short poem is indicative of her and her style, it's not necessarily her best.  I'm sure I'll be sharing more of her work in the near future, but for now, I present Sarah Kay!

Sunday, January 22


Sometimes when I'm feeling like my life is becoming too complicated or stressful or compromised, I go for walks.  I don't need to go very far, I just need to hear the wind and the leaves and maybe some water and I'm revitalized!  One day during my walk I got caught out in the rain and decided to just sit and enjoy it.  I like when it rains, like I feel most people do on one level or another, and I wrote this poem as I reflected on it.

As usual, I'm going to shame myself by asking for responses from anyone who encounters this poem, whether they find it enjoyable or otherwise.  Below there are several check-boxes and I ask you to check whatever one most befits your attitude after reading.  If you have questions or comments, feel free to make them below, and if you'd go so far as to say that you LIKE this poem, I'd appreciate it if you'd share it on Facebook or Google+!

Who first claimed weather was the cause of ruin
And shuddered at these falling globs
Ignoring all irony in what they were doing
As they bemoaned their luck in heaving sobs?

Instead, such a preference for the boastful sun,
The eternal burner and giver of light,
Ignoring millions of droplets that act as one,
And are equally significant to the tree of life.

Despite having all the heavens as their source,
Those clear, cleansing waters are humble,
Quenching and flowing and washing with force,
They never are proud nor falter nor stumble.

It is only a fool who could dislike the rain,
Choosing exclusively to favor the sun,
As a wise man would realize both are the same,
For enjoying this life and for having some fun.

To all of those for whom my words are unheard,
I wish I could share what it is I have gained,
How much I have grown, developed, matured,
While learning and loving each time that it rained.


Thursday, January 12

Good Intentions

I can largely sum up my life in the things I've never done.  Some of those things are grand or impossible or are expected to remain undone.  Other things are the stuff of my promises.  They are the chores I really thought that I would remember to do or the hobbies I truly intended to pursue.  Those who know me can name plenty of things, if they put their minds to it, that I said I would do in a moment of strength and that slipped into the part of the world exists outside of my routine.  This is a poem about those things.

I hope anyone who reads this will take the time to comment on it in some fashion.  I don't necessarily want praise, I'll take criticisms (or Facebook / Google+ shares) just as readily.  It's nice to know that people are looking at all!  Well, without further ado, Good Intentions:

This is a poem about good intentions,
About the thank-you notes which clutter my drawer,
And keep me from finding the calligraphy pen which writes so nicely,
The pen I meant to give to my sister.
It’s about the good china sitting in its cabinet,
Dustily waiting for the dinner party I’ll throw one day,
And my bible, tucked quietly on a cluttered shelf of paperbacks.
This poem is not about the sweatpants in my bedroom,
But about the treadmill upon which they drape.
It’s about the unopened envelopes from charities,
To which I’ll write a check some payday, and
The keys I dropped on the table near the door,
Below the key hook I thought would keep things neat,
But that sits as bare as the sketchpads under my bed.
It’s a poem about the rhyme scheme that somehow isn’t here,
The presidential debate I recorded and never watched,
That was going to reveal the candidates for whom I never voted.
I heard once that Anne Frank believed people are really good at heart,
But as I toss another unpaid bill into my otherwise empty fruit bowl,
I can’t help but think that just isn’t good enough.


Sunday, January 8

Super 8

On our road trip we stayed in a lot of hotels.  Given my choice to do it over, I would eliminate some, most, or all(?) of our hotel stays and opt instead for a lot of camping, couch surfing, and even sleeping in the car.  We could have saved a lot of money this way and managed to stay out on the road for months longer than we did.  We had so much fun, but we also spent SO much money.  I'm sure we could have done a lot better than $9,500 in 90 days!  Anyway, below is a poem I wrote after about 80 days of hotel-tripping.

I would really love to know people are reading, whether they think its good, bad, or otherwise.  At the bottom of this post, there are three opportunities to let me know.  The first way is to click one of the boxes next to "I enjoyed this post," "Interesting!," or "Did not enjoy."  The second way is to scroll down and click on the link that says "0 Comments" (or hopefully it'll say "1 comment" or "2+ comments") and type a short message explaining how you felt about the poem.  The third is to click on the Facebook "f" icon and share it with your friends on Facebook!


Colorful comforters, neatly tucked, are hotel trademarks,
And I understand the impression they’re trying to make,
But why do they itch?  They feel ironically woolly.
There ought to be a word for a comforter that’s not quite right.
An “uncomforter" or maybe you prefer “discomforter” or something.
I hate those woolly, itchy sleeping squares.

At least hotel comforters are clean, or so they seem,
Thanks to that dizzying watercolor design on top.

That’s a job I think I’d like, picking out hotel uncomforters.
I am not sure how much money I would make,
Though I expect my work would be appreciated.
There can be no doubt that they are carefully selected,
Chosen to highlight that lovely blue in the painting above the bed,
No, not the thicket, the one with the wooden rowboat.


Tuesday, January 3

Manatee Marina

We’ve been standing on the docks of the marina for a while now,
Hoping to see the manatees that were promised to us,
Though we’ve been luckless thus far.
Occasionally, we stir as the water swirls mysteriously,
And giant pockets of air rise to the surface with a comical blub.
Yet still there are no manatees,
Nor any other signs which give us hope,
And so we’re forced to watch these bubbles of exhaled air,
Our only proof of the large lungs below.
Several times we have left our stagnant dock,
Running toward some other, more promising spot,
Some spot, my companions decide, where we would breach,
You know, if we three were manatees.

Many times we move about the docks,
Our heels beating repeatedly on the wood,
A siren’s call to the unimpressed sea cows below,
Until, manatee ho!, a beefy creature breaks the surface.
It is with toothy smiles we greeted the blubbery beast,
And with whimpers of adoration that we welcomed its calf,
That chunky, floppy-lipped baby.
Several, then, appeared in succession,
First as ominous red ovals, like drops of my blood,
Before gradually obtaining definition,
And breaching the calm waters.
Gleefully we snap photos with the camera,
An aid for our forgetful minds,
Remarking to one another how lucky we are.
How blessed to have this man-made alcove,
A sanctuary where we can view this herd of endangered beasts.

The largest surfaces now, his size a testament to his age and wisdom.
He moves slowly with the patience of an old-timer who’s seen too much,
And his mood implies he’s only surfaced for an obligatory breath,
Before returning to the invisible depths below this wood.
As he begins his descent, which is less diving than sinking,
He shows us his scars, shaped like our smiles,
And I consider my words,
“How lucky we are.”