Oh, I could write a dictionary
and people it with words.
(The married couple to my left speak
soft thoughts mildly slurred.)
My lexicon, my book of words,
would brim with definitions
so right and potent they would serve
conversationalists with munitions.
Philosophers (they slur as well)
would couch-joust with my terms
and, sneezing, spread my nouns and verbs
ubiquitously as germs.
But I’ll no right their wrongs today,
nor give them words to munch.
I’ll sit here outside in the springtime sun
and savour a springtime lunch.
I have nothing to say. I write that down assiduously.
I used to think I’d be a writer when I’d themes
and wisdom, from experience. But, invidiously,
I’ve learned nothing matters as much as it seems
it will before I chase it hard and jealously.
The ending of the chase keeps best in dreams,
and here, in winter sunlight, by the sea,
I am happy saying nothing, merrily.
Wild ducks compete with children for the shade
in the shallow water underneath this tree.
Tan toddlers pelt their siblings with wet sand.
Few other places the Creator made
compare well with this shallow inland sea
for pretty pleasures. Children understand.
Here they are quiet and happy, and they play
at finding pirate treasure till they swim
into the sunshine. One beached duck eats bread
from a sandwich dropped off earlier today
by a duck-god, he says, daily feeding him.
His story grabs my heart if not my head.
The weather up north’s German (as they say, ‘wetter’).
Dutch polders that aren’t frozen float in rain.
Down here in Spain it’s drier. Warmer. Better.
Though Oslo slows from powdered snow, the pain
of seeing that on TV does not fetter
my feckless glee. Orange blossoms help me gain
perspectives that permit me to endure
my winter where the sea today’s azure.
published in THE ARMCHAIR AESTHETE and in THE OLDING MAN
The late August sun sees fine, fat spiders sleeping.
They drift in dreams that scud among their eyes
like tiny mimics of the clouds’ light leaping
to tag the sun that bathes the August skies.
One spider had a fly beside her weeping
at tales she whispered, wrapping him in lies
and myths. She sleeps. He struggles, accepts fate,
as he thinks back on the smaller beings he ate.
December night acquires a fuller moon
that lights the whitecaps on the Ijsselmeer.
I pace to warm myself, attempt a tune
the wind absconds with, wiping off a sneer
from my chapped lips. A sleepy heron stands
just inward of the rocks that take the spray.
It dews his feathers, flecks and chills my hands.
Winter’s Blessed Wind Chill appeared in The Olding Man
In the beauty of this day’s fall colours
when its nip in the air put that tang in my tendons
I gave up my day job
of being unemployed
and my addictive personality
that hasn’t killed me so far
due to terminal sloth
and marched off
to my artisan’s workbench
to do something
in this world
until studied reflection
on the personal safety accorded me by Guardian Sloth
sent me happily back to bed to read.
Better read than dead.