The Kindness of the Trees

As he reflects on the splendor of this fall
he thinks of ones that went before, all the
predicted glory, all the touted colors that

were to be and, yes, there were glorious
days after great anticipation but then came
the rain and down came the leaves and out

came the damnable leaf blowers — until
this fall. This fall is different. The anticipated
glory came but it didn’t leave; it stayed and

stayed and stayed through the rains and
the winds and the chill of night. It is as
if the trees know that this fall is different,

that there is great suffering this fall, that
in the houses in the neighborhoods, in
the apartments in the cities, in the home-

less shelters people are suffering and
afraid and out of kindness and under-
standing and nature’s compassion, the

trees kept their gorgeous leaves for us
to embrace with our eyes and our hearts
are touched with the kindness of the trees.

Voilà

He reads poems.
Today, he read a
very brief poem
whose meaning
seemed absurd.
The poet had
been in the
German army
during WWI.
Maybe that
had something
to do with the
absurdity. 
PTSD? He
also reads
simplistic
rhymed and
metered
poems like
the religious
poems his
aunt wrote
for the local,
neighborhood
newspaper.
Once in a
while he
reads a poem
and says,
“Voilà,
Aristotle’s
Golden Mean,
the Buddha's
Middle Way, 
Lao Tzu's 
Tao -- some-
thing that 
reads really 
well like 
a parable of 
Jesus. 

A Twenty-Eight-Year-Old Conversation Between a Long Deceased Introvert and Her Extroverted Husband

She said, “You don’t really know me,” —
that after twenty-five years of marriage.
He didn’t know whether he was being
told in an accusatory tone that he
hadn’t cared enough to find out or if
that tone was one of pride that some-
how she had spirited away her soul so
he could never know. He said, “Well, if
you had told me, I would have known.
I can’t know anything without being in-
formed.” “If you truly loved me, I wouldn’t
have had to tell you; you would just know.”
“Oh, come on. That’s not fair.” And with
that he knew the tone was a little of each.
And with that memory, he turned to his
introverted wife of twenty-five years and
said, “Tell me, dear.” She just furrowed
her brow.

wisdom

he sits mesmerized by the maple
     tree across the street — brilliant
          orange, yellow, red leaves still
in the windless air like a painting
     by an impressionist. he can al-
          most hear the notes emanating
from the trunk like a pavane
     for a dead princess. soon the
          leaves will twist in the wind and
sleet will slap the tree branches
     until they give up the leaves for
          the winter just around the corner,
but for the moment, the leaves
     sit in the stillness and splender
          that come with wisdom.

 

All The Poets Are Filled With Shame

So, all the poets, if they are old enough
to have children, are filled with guilt and
shame because of the deplorable state

of the earth’s environmental health which
the children, apparently, revel in pointing
out to their now berated, humiliated and

dilapidated parents — those very poets.
And as a father of two children and a step-
father to one stepson, I have thought about

that and have had pangs of regret over not
doing more to help an environment over
which I had not much control. On the other

hand, we separated garbage into garbage
and recyclables from the time the kids were
born so they knew that we were concerned

about the environment, but, hey, in terms
of the big picture, we were pretty much
powerless, but now, apparently, the poets

are convinced that the children stand in
utter and total judgment on their parents,
which is really sad considering that we

are all on the same side wanting to swim
in clean water, breathe clean air, garden in
rich soil and frolic with the wild life. Maybe

the poets are just trying to wake us up from
our lethargy. Maybe, but who knows what’s
in the mind of a poet? So, why do I allow

them to make me feel guilty and ashamed?

Hmmm, those darn poets….

Converting Lefties Into Making Right

 

The members of the cabinet attended a CLIMR meeting. 
The Temporary Occupant wanted them all to be CLIMRs 
and so he equipped them with ropes and crampons and 

said, “Have at it. Let me know when you get back from 
Everest.” But the cabinet members were on a mission 
from God not a climbing expedition anticipated by the 

clueless occupant. They were learning how to convert 
lefties into making right, their sole purpose being to 
take the sinister lefties, expose them for what they 

are, an Antifa support group, and chop off their left 
hands. All was going well when the Secretary of Edu-
cation grabbed the hatchet with her left hand and the 

other members let out a screech. The secretary then 
screamed that she was no lefty but only turned to the 
right in all things. Too late. The Temporary Veep grab-

bed the hatchet and declared that there wouldn’t ever 
be anything left left. And with that, the Court decided 
to consider the case calling for the dismemberment of 

all lefties' left hands. When it came time for the vote, 
the newly confirmed justice inadvertently raised her left 
hand. She was heard to scream as she was carried off to 

the guillotine for left hands, "Next time I'll be sure 
to get it right." Too late, Lefty Lady.

The Gummy That Makes Him Giggle

He thinks the gummy lasts through the night into the morning
because the giggles come on during breakfast without a warning.
He remembers the previous evening giggling at news’ dire warnings
and giggling to bed wondering if there will be a next morning.
Well, the sun came up as predicted
and nothing happened over night with warnings so afflicted.
And so, he conjures dumb puns
from which his wife and dog run.
He just giggles while he sits
thinking about an English violinist:

“We rented a room from an English violinist,”
is a line from a poem. It really struck a chord.

He said that since COVID-19, he sits at home gaining weight.
His wife said, “That’s awful. Does that mean that everything is going to waist?”

His wife had a physician’s appointment to examine her bones.
He said to her, “I think you are very smart but I want your bones to be dense.”

And with that, before the car door was closed, the dog ran out
and jumped right in, declaring, “Don’t leave me here with the giggling lout.”

“Oh, Babe, my dear Chocolate Lab, stay with me and inspire me to think of puns galore.” And with that, his wife said, “Are you in, Babe?” and slammed the door.

Namaste 🙏

Obfuscating, denying, ducking, 
withholding (tantamount to lying)
work their way through halls of 
non-legislating and faux justice-making
not to mention the executive branch, 
which has become the citadel of lying
and what is the end result of all these machinations?
Before our very eyes democracy dying?
Oh, it has all gone on before: evil’s mundane mendacity — 
merely a one-note Donny, 
“I'm immune! I could kiss all the guys 
but only the good looking honeys.”
With these, corporate principalities and powers
usurp that which the Constitution guarantees 
to be all of ours
and for what? 
Some seduced plead their case, “The end justifies the means.
When we get there the good we will do will be seen.”
Ah, such stupid notions and silly lies
right before our incredulous eyes.
Ah, the mundane again — money, prestige, fleeting power,
while CEOs and corporate boards glower
and minions sing,
“We are climbing Babel’s tower,
One more rung, higher, higher,
we want to be as gods and have all eternal power.”
Isn’t eternity simply love on a cross, 
suffering with and for others,
humbly telling the truth so justice doesn’t smother?
Of these, there shall be no end.
It is with these, we courageously bow 
and with praying hands offer peace,
nonviolent resistance, 
and salutations, "Namaste, my friends,"
and then "Eternal Spirit, into, thy hands, 
our spirits we commend."

Believers Believe

believers believe
non-believers believe in non-belief
some critical thinkers believe in thinking
and that alone
some non-believers and critical thinkers
believe believers have heads of rocks and stone
because some believers aren’t thinkers
and leave stuff like science alone
and to conspiracy theories do religiously adhere
and take metaphors literally
and to the literal do faithfully adhere
and believe that the 
falsity of certainty
alone and not agape love casts out fear
but, there are believers 
who see that "faith is 
the substance of things 
hoped for, 
the evidence of things 
not seen" 
(but things believed in)
but would never think
to leave their brains and critical thinking
in life’s old, dust bin.