A Middle-Eastern Trio

A Middle-Eastern Trio

Tibia, Fibula and Patella sound like a Middle-Eastern trio of females singing hauntingly beautiful Ancient Persian melodies and harmonies accompanied by a lyre

When in reality they are leg bones used by each and every Marine who goes into battle in a Middle-Eastern Region strewn with roadside, countryside, and citywide bombs

Planted just under the top soil so that the soldiers with big muscles attached by such things as Anterior Cruciate and other ligaments to the tibia, fibula and knee cap otherwise

Known as a patella hear, until the medics arrive or, unfortunately for less time, the hauntingly Beautiful melodies and harmonies accompanied by the percussion section of

The orchestra as it blasts out the sounds of Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture and this time the drums as Bombs are beaten with tibiae, fibulae and patellae, that is, two or more trios.

The Benefits of Having a Green Card

My local grocery pushed really hard for the green card,

Because it was something that would save us shoppers

A whole lot of moolah they said.


So always a fan of saving a whole lot of moolah, I got

The green card, the one that I don’t need to work in the

US of A but to save on groceries.


After I got the green card, I went to my local grocery

To buy a bottle of wine and I saw a 1.5 liter of pinot grigio

At the regularly discounted price.


Eagerly, I made for the check out to get my benefits and a whole lot of moolah and the

Cashier asked me if I had my green card.  It was on my key chain on the key

That was still in the ignition. Being in a magnanimous mood


I said, “Don’t worry. It’s only one item and I won’t worry

About the points for just one item.”  The register registered

The retail price and I asked, “Say what?”


And she said that I need the green card for the discount

And I said that I never needed the green card before

To get the discount, so I said sarcastically


That I got the green card to save money and get points

For really good things that I never, ever would have thought

Of if it hadn’t been for the great green card,


But now I understand that I need the green card that I never ever

Needed before to get the regularly discounted items

And save me a lot of moolah.


She asked me for my phone number, because that works just as well, so

I gave her my phone number but it didn’t register.  I went to the car

And got the green card for the discount I always just got before.


The manager looked into it and found that the green card in my name

Had my wife’s phone number on it, so in the future I would have to use it, and

The cashier smiled and said, “Oh, by the way, there are no points for booze.”


And I said, “But I get the discount I would have gotten before without the damn green

Card.”  She nodded, smiled, told me to have a good day and not forget my green card

Next time unless I could remember my wife’s cell phone number.

He Dived Into the Pool

He Dived Into the Pool

He dived into the pool in his backyard in a suburb of Chicago in late July the year before I graduated from high school.  He was the brother-in-law of my school friend.  I watched his head come up out of the water and his skull shone through the scraggly, wet hairs.

I thought, “Ough, look at that bald head.”

Years and years and some more years later, I breaststroke across the condo pool in Phoenix diving in and coming out and diving back in and coming back out and not thinking about my hair until I walk up the stairs to the condo and look in the

bathroom mirror and think, “Ough, look at that bald head.”

And so it goes, hair today gone tomorrow.

If I May

If I May

Joseph Campbell said that “Myths are public dreams, dreams are private myths.” If I make my private myth a public dream is that another way of saying it only with an “if “at the beginning and so, If I may?

I walk along a boardwalk above the beach and the boardwalk is bleached white boards with bleached white-hot sand crunching under my feet and creeping up between my burning toes as I look down toward the icy, hot, blue water, and

I see a white haired but young, slim woman there wearing a really white black one-piece swimsuit.  I leave the boardwalk and walk on the white-hot, white sand down to the young, white haired woman in the white black one-piece swimsuit

Where I pull out a kitchen knife, a good six-inch German made blade and begin stabbing her through her white black one-piece swimsuit and the blazing red hot blood splatters everywhere, all over the white black swimsuit, the white-hot white sand

Even up to the bleached white-hot boards of the boardwalk under the bleached white-hot sand which soaks it up.  He knows that my beautiful, young wife in the black one-piece swimsuit loved the heat of the beach

And died three months ago in a day when her brain burst blood all over the inside of her skull and all over the beach of my private myth/public dream and states declaratively with a question, “Why are you stabbing yourself?”


For All Those Who are Tall, Dark and Handsome

For All Those Who Are Tall, Dark and Handsome

The tall, dark handsome, young US Representative stood before the cameras and stated That the President of the United States was sowing the seeds of discontent and preying On fears and resentments

That have led to violence in the streets in which at least one, poor, anarchist, communist, Anti-Christ like soldier who served two tours of duty in Iraq made it through without a Scratch there only to have his scull bashed in

By city police right here in the Good Old US of A and blood splattered everywhere. His life Hangs in the balance in an Oakland, California hospital while the US Representative does His crunches in the gym to keep his washboard abs looking good for the camera

If they ever want him to take off his tie and white, white shirt.

I’m Just a Poor, Old, Country Preacher

“I’m Just a Poor, Old, Country Preacher”

“I’m just a poor, old, country preacher” was the ruse he had learned in the great Commonwealth of Kentucky from his southern born brothers in the ministry.

A city boy from the North, he sat mesmerized by those from Alabama and Mississippi who Had journeyed as far north as they could stand and landed in Louisville, south side of the Ohio river

Only venturing beyond the north side of the Ohio for judicatory business, the business of Doing the Lord’s work having to negotiate about that work with the dreaded Yankees of Civil War infamy.

Years and years before he had ventured south of the Ohio river and almost to the banks of The Cumberland, a manchild in the Promised land of Bowling Green, Franklin and Round Pond.

How in the heck did that happen? He asked himself and his wife asked him and his year And a half old son would have asked him if he had thought of it and could formulate the Words.

It seemed even to be a question on the lips of the Lord who it has been said wouldn’t Venture north of Munfordville because anything north of Munfordville was too far north for Any self-respecting southern deity.

His daughter, a Southern Belle born way down in Bowling Green where you would find the Prettiest girls ever seen, never thought to ask him that because, well, she was a Southern Belle.

He felt like a fish out of water, certainly the great waters of one of the Great Lakes’ lake Lake Michigan, where he would put a toe or two into in July and most certainly early August,

But he got used to putting his hand into the warm waters of the ponds of his farmer Parishioners pulling out a catfish or slabber Blue gill or really large, largemouth bass.

And he and his son who was now old enough to hold a rod and reel In his hand and make Pretty good casts into the ponds and his wife who always brought her art pad to draw and Southern Belle baby

Drove through the gates into the fields parking near the pond and the really big fat hogs Would come and rub their really dirty bodies against his really nice, white 1970 Dodge Challenger,

And Jack, the owner of the property and an elder in his church, would yell, “Soo-ee, Soo-ee, soo-ee!” and the pigs would prance off to other parts of the pasture.

The transplanted Yankee pastor had been told on the first Sunday that his four and half Year tenure began that he had two strikes against Him: “One, you’re a Yankee. Two, you’re From a big city.

And if I might I add three, you’re a Presbyterian.” “What?” he asked. “This is a Presbyterian Church.”  “No. That’s just the sign above the door. We’re really all Baptists here.”

He was right.  The Yankee preacher’s Southern Belle daughter was baptized when she Was a month old and when it came to adding up the stats at the end of the year, they just Flat out forgot that one

Because it hadn’t happened by immersion in Drake’s Creek.

And so, he went to judicatory meetings to watch with wonder the smooth tongued Presbyterian pastors who sought to outwit each other by using the “I’m just a poor, old Country preacher” ploy,

And it was such a wonder to behold, but there was no greater wonder than the sight of These Southern Presbyterian boys disarming and then sentencing to death by Embarrassment their Northern counterparts at synod meetings.

Years and years later long after he had ventured back north, he attended a city council Meeting to plead the cause of a minority who wasn’t having its rights protected, and he

Summoned his best “I’m just a poor, old, country preacher” wily subterfuge, after all he Had been an English major with a speech and theater minor in college, with a Kentucky Twang and all and five minutes later after he said, “Thaaank, yu’ll very much and praise

God!” he sat down and three minutes later two of the seven council members smiled.

And Life Goes On After a Meltdown

And Life Goes On After a Meltdown

The meltdown in the reactor # Four at Chernobyl

Burst the housing bubble a short distance away in Pripyat

In what has become part of the dreaded Zone.


Humans departed the high-rises en-mass

And everything green turned burnt brown

For about twenty-some years.


Then Mother Nature took over braving

The crack, crack, crackling of the Geiger counter

To welcome back those


Who had been unceremoniously booted out

By the agents of the state for social engineering,

City planning and industrial development.


The field mice entered the lobby and

Looked around the first floor seeking comfortable

Confines from which to entertain.


It was a short distance from their rooms

To the bar which was left well stocked with the very best

Russian vodka and Kentucky Bourbon.


The beavers, chipmunks and moles headed

Straight for the basement where it was

So cool and damp and gloriously slippery,


But the King of the Raptors, the Bald Headed Eagle

Flew majestically and unhindered into the

Sweet suite on the top floor


And prepared room for the Royal family

Where it didn’t matter if the elevators worked

Because the raptors just dive bombed to the lobby


For a late night drink with the field mice, beavers,

Chipmunks and moles who were illuminated

By the radiation emanating from everything.

The Earth Abideth Forever

The Earth Abideth Forever

One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh; but the earth abideth for ever.   — Ecclesiastes 1:4

The generation came and built a modern technological city with just the right streets and Buildings mapped out:  architects, sociologists, demographers, city planners

All came together to build the perfect modern city next to the perfect nuclear plant planned by the best nuclear scientists and engineers to fuel the needs of the people

A gazillion miles away in the magnificent cities built and governed by magnificent people all By and for the people who would benefit by the enterprise.

Years before, the great social engineers put thousands and thousands to work in the Swamps to drain the life out of them and create really great farm land to feed the masses

In the magnificent cities a gazillion of miles away named after those who had stolen the Cities from anyone who actually had anything at all to do with building them.

And then it all blew to hell and all the humans moved out.

Twenty some years later, it’s the accidentally greenest city in the world.  No humans, just Wolves and bison and raptors and bald eagles and greenery

Creeping up between the bricks and mortar and collapsing metal buildings and rotting Wood structures and the lingering crackle of the atoms

Split by really, really smart scientists who wished to control the elements we studied in Chemistry 101 for the benefit of all the masses in the magnificent urban areas.

And the native grass grows and the trees grow and the concrete breaks and the earth Plows it all under while the wolves follow the wetlands to the beavers.

A bison calf falls to winter and the wolves descend. It isn’t even a contest.  They pull and Tug and tear at the carcass. The bison return; the wolves snarl and leave and the bison

Gather around the dead calf, sniff and nudge and mourn its death and then

Move along.

Breakout on an Otherwise Quiet Street

Breakout on an Otherwise Quiet Street

“Five men to guard the British Ranks and

Five to watch the town above and

Two to stand at either hand

And one to let Bill Tenor out.”

The Kingston Trio’s Bill Tenor was Old Tenor and Old Tenor was John Webb and John made an old tenor coin,

and the Brits got their undies all scrunched and unceremoniously tossed him in the huscow, clink, big house.

His buddies broke him out.

These folks didn’t have five men to guard the house or watch the town or two to stand at either hand and they weren’t trying to break anyone out,

but there were some who wanted in. They heard the heavy appetizers were going to be delicious and a sommelier would be matching wines to food.

Later they heard it had been wild and crazy, maybe even a neighborhood celebration for some kind of “breakout” like that of John “Old Tenor” Webb. You could hear their undies scrunching.

They wouldn’t have been surprised if someone had been taken from the small house and tossed unceremoniously in the huscow, clink, big house.

The ones that were there just thought it was nice, including the conservative, evangelical Christians who only had one and a half glasses of wine each before going home.

Well, actually two did breakout. The old folks went to the Hampton Inn for a few hours sleep before going back to fix breakfast for the revelers strewn all over the little house.

The next day they were told that the thirty-somethings got wild and crazy enough to go skinny-dipping in Lake Michigan.

They broke out for the beach and at breakfast their hair was still wet.

It wasn’t as wild as the breakout of John “Old Tenor” Webb.  He broke locks and he broke bolts and he broke all that he came nigh,

and it certainly wasn’t as wild as the party for the guy who got released from teen detention in Philadelphia: “Five stabbed at ‘welcome home from jail’ party.”

They were so happy for the release that they shot up the street and stabbed the heck out of a few partygoers. Now that’s one “wild and crazy” neighborhood party.

“Shoot ‘em up on otherwise quiet street. Guns blaze and people stabbed during wedding reception after conservative, evangelical Christians go home having only had one and a half glasses of wine each.

It was reported the wine had been poured by a sommelier and that the heavy appetizers were gourmet.”

John ‘Old Tenor’ Webb was seen breaking out through the back door that he came nigh. It is further reported that he just opened the slide, stepped out and closed the slide behind him and walked away.”

The neighbors grumbled, “See, we should have called the police.”

With A Feather In It

With A Feather In It

She had brown skin, tightly curled, shiny black hair and when she was escorted off the bus, nobody helped.


He had a ruddy complexion and a feather in his hair and when he collapsed along the road that led from the bars back to Pine Ridge, nobody helped.


He had fair skin and blond hair and when he was strapped to the fence and had the shit beaten out of him, nobody helped.


She had olive skin, smooth, straight, radiant black hair and when they put her in an interment camp, nobody helped.


He had closely cropped hair and sat in a wheelchair having lost three limbs in Viet Nam and when they labeled him “Un-American,” nobody helped.


He had the look of a Middle-Eastern terrorist down to a tee and when they nailed him, pounded him, hoisted him for all to mock, nobody helped.


But because of the guy who looked like a Middle-Eastern terrorist,

this privileged, old, white guy who takes so much for granted because so much has been granted better understand his skin is brown, ruddy, fair, olive and his hair is tightly curled, shiny black, blond, smooth, close cropped

with a feather in it.