Monday, March 31, 2008

The Mask Has Fallen

The mask has fallen: everyone can see
The way you handled things when times were hard
And trouble left us loveless, scorned and scarred.
Now that we're unencumbered, fair and free,
We feel you treated us indifferently
When you believed you held the winning card.
We were not shamed, no, nor were we disbarred,
And you did not triumph, not over me.

We know now what you really are, inside:
Imperious, and pusillanimous,
Filled with malicious spite and animus.
You've held your feelings down, you had to hide
The things you really thought, but you were snide
When it was time to be magnanimous.

Friday, March 21, 2008


Disease is spreading quickly through the land,
Among the addled women in the dark,
Through rodents dwelling bleakly in the park,
Amidst the smaller cats and dogs on hand
And seagulls beckoning along the sand.
What's needed, clearly, is some sort of ark
To save us all. We'll watch the happy shark
Displaying his bright smile. We are unmanned.

Disease has cheered the Devil, who runs past
Exclaiming grandly that he sleeps with fleas
And eats no vegetables except green peas,
Implying that his health is fading fast.
Indeed, he looks as if he had been gassed,
Though we alone are feeling ill at ease.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Arthur in the Photograph

That's Arthur, in this fading photograph,
Delivering the news about our Dad,
Which clearly hasn't made him very sad –
Look at that smile! He seems to want to laugh,
Suppressing it because his epitaph
(He hopes) will read: "The best friend that we had."
But look at him: he does seem pretty glad,
Too proud, too sharp, too satisfied by half.

My mother took this photo, a quick snap
Before he could compose himself, the lout,
Into his cool obligatory pout
And get my mother on his linty lap.
Her heart, unmoved by how he held his cap
And looked down smartly, never was found out.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Seeking New Friends

One excellent shiraz consumed, we sang
As loudly as we could for several hours,
We counted artichokes and smelled the flowers
Until the evening ended with a bang.
There was some whimpering from the old gang
Of hollow men, but then the April showers
Began, we sat inside, drank whiskey sours
And told our old buddies they could go hang.

We were depressed, of course. Not past all hope,
But losing all your friends that way was bad.
It made us angry, and it made us sad,
The way they looked when we suggested rope
Was what was needed. They suggested soap,
But artichokes and flowers were all we had.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

Loose Canons

Junk science has become my passion now:
Divining rods, cloud shapes, astrology,
Grief, alien abductions, alchemy,
Intelligent design (look at that cow!),
The power of the pyramid, the Tao,
The damned, the dreamers and the Money Tree,
The miracles we see, those we can't see,
And these loose canons tell us why and how.

A restless, chattering archbishopric
Of melancholic half-truths, sour and sage,
Dispensing wisdom for this tarnished age,
As if real knowledge were a parlour trick
And flagellating with a dowsing stick
Were something worthy of a living wage.