DANDELIONS & PIGTAILS

dandelionThey sat together
On lush green grass
Gathered dandelions
Like precious treasures

Parachutes, gently
Blown, into the wind
To, excited squeals
Of childhood friends

 Ran, and played
Pigtails, flew
Days were long
Worries, few

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DP: NAME NONSENSE

PrinceMy first name is “William,” middle name “Arthur.”  As a matter of fact, all, of my three names, could be first names.  If I was named after someone, it had to be an obscure relative on my mother’s side of the family.  I fantasized about being named for historical figures–like “William the Conqueror,” or “King Arthur.”  If that were true, imagine my parent’s disappointment, when I didn’t live up to expectations.

From “William” came the usual nicknames: “Will,” “Willie,” “Bill,” and “Billy.  To which unflattering modifiers were added by cruel schoolmates, that will remain secret.  The nickname that stuck was “Bill.”  In adolescence, my first name suddenly became boring.  What could I do to punch up my identity–make my mark?  One idea, was shaving off my hair, replacing it with tattooed-on hair.  Thank goodness that never happened.

Perhaps a distinctive name, difficult to pronounce?  …With lots of consonants, few vowels, silent letters.  Then, I could feign indignantly, when my name was mispronounced.  …A different spelling?  Why not “Bill,” with three “L’s?” Maybe something like “ZX729,” consisting of letters and numbers?

Several years later, the rocker “Prince,” seized the opportunity, changed his name to an unpronounceable symbol.  It was a gigantic flop.  People didn’t have time or patience for this naming nonsense and used the abbreviation TAFKAP, (The Artist Formerly Known As Prince).  Explanations of identity proved more troublesome than his conventional name.

I’m “William Arthur,” for a brief imaginative moment, known as “ZX729.” I’m happy with my name and who I am!  Although, junk mail comes addressed to “Occupant.”  Now, there’s a very distinctive name.

Fishbowl Philosophy

aquariumCedric was smart
Had a big heart
He was extraordinary
Had a big vocabulary
With all the intelligence
That could be packed
Into his little fish brain

He stared
Was sometimes scared
Especially, early mornings
When gigantic hands
Reached down
Sprinkled food
Without warning

Strange, grotesquely
Distorted creatures
With exaggerated features
And appendages
Pressed their faces
Enormous eyes
Against the glass

What was the
Meaning of life?
This little Piscean
Swam in his aquarium
Pondered epistemological
Vicissitudes, and said
“I swim, therefore I am”

SCARED OF LIVING (Afraid of Dying)

In honor of the fallen–those with heavy hearts–this Memorial Day.

itinerantneerdowell

Hardly remembered
Easily forgotten
What could be?
What might have been?
Live for today
Not tomorrow
Nothing given or taken
Only borrowed
Could briefly stay
Afraid to go home
Judgement clouded in anger
Conscience disappeared
Truths, too real to conceive
Secrets carried to the grave

As day transitions to night
Give up, or stand up and fight
Cemeteries overflowing
With timid and bold
Young and old
Those that died
For what they believed
Widows, orphans
Overcome with grief
Same language
Different beliefs
Scared of living
Afraid of dying

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DOORS

The doorThe landing smelled
Of, the sea, sweat
Sisal rope, diesel fuel
Old wooden door
Rude storage building
Only a seafarer
Could love
Kept things in
Kept things out

Red and blue
Pigments faded
Wood grains roughened
Door moldings warped
Under pressure
But, didn’t break

Toughened sailors
Held to tradition
Passed through
This doorway
To opportunity
Or disappointment
With regularity of tides
In and out, everyday

Thinking Posts

head scratching

Henry had a headache
Head throbbed with pain
Over and over
Again and again
He stood on one leg
Scratched his head
Then, switched to the other

He knew where to go
When, there was
Thinking, to be done
His favorite place
He couldn’t tell anyone
A grouchy pelican, was
On pier post one
So, pier post two
Would have to do

So he perched
And he scratched
It sure felt good
Like head-scratching should
He thought some
Scratched again
Then, thought some more
Wasn’t that what thinking
Posts were for?

STREETCAR

streetcarPassengers, sat quietly
Enjoyed breezes wafting
Through open windows
Scents from gardens
Majestic courtyards
Bakeries, bistros

Ancient wooden
Beasts of burden
Accepted, for what
They were, destination
Not, as important
As, enjoying the ride

Clickety-clacked
Creaked and groaned
For a new generation
As in, decades before
To the waterfront
Along tree-lined
Boulevards, and
Wrought iron fences