Franklin, My Dear




Saw him in whiteface, crying at the bar –

a stricken mime craves wine.

Like the man at the bottle shop says,

“A good sample is the best bourbon.”

Early to bed, early to rise

and home by three.

Tell me what I forget.

Touch me and I surrender.

Involve me and I turn state’s evidence.

I told old Ben to go flight a kite

and he became an enlightened sage.


* * *


The king of the adages, Poor Richard was just begging to be twisted.  Jilly brought the prompt, and dVerse Poets Pub had the guts to go with it.  So be it!





Ralph Steadman


My mother is the necessity of my intention,
Making me want to do the things I should.
A sloppy boy born of sloth would she shun,
My mother.  Is the necessity of my intention
That in her presence I don’t dawdle but run?
I would please her, be a pleaser if I could.
My mother is the necessity – of my intention –
Making me want.  To do the things I should.


* * *


Posted at dVerse Poets Pub for Poetics, where Jilly is asking us to write adages with a twist.  I misread the prompt and am now cleaning lemon juice from my keyboard.

Quadrille – Not Earth-bound


Covered by earth.
Lord, what a surprise!
Two meters’ worth;
Coins on my eyes –
Bad dream!

Saving the earth,
But what a price.
Love without dearth –
A cruelly hewn device.
Odd scheme!

Sudden rebirth;
The melting of ice –
New earth.
Lazarus’ empty grave…


* * *


Posted to dVerse Poets Pub, Quadrille night.




Troiku – Basho’s Final Haiku



falling sick on a journey
my dream goes wandering
over a field of dried grass

falling sick on a journey
summer has lasted too long
the sun hides in rain

my dream goes wandering
cranes are heading southward
passing the ones who stay

over a field of dried grass
a sudden wind from a storm
whistling my farewell song

* * *

Back in 2012 (or 13?) Chèvrefeuille, the host of Carpe Diem Haiku Kai, introduced the form he called, Troiku.  Follow the link for more information on this form.  It’s an interesting twist on an ancient and revered poetry form.  It’s also a lot of fun!  The first haiku is the last one the master, Matsuo Bashō, wrote before he died.



Beyond a Shadow


“Shadow of a Doubt,” directed by Alfred Hitchcock


It was then when I first saw
your doubt… he was lurking
just around the corner from
the garage.  True, in some way
I, too, brought a doubt along.

How could you doubt, I thought;
but then there he was, dressed
in coldly dubious business casual.

Why stand on formalities
when belief is strained –
like a can of beans?

They didn’t take long to become
acquainted, your doubt and mine.

They shared the time of day,
the weather, and eventually
pictures of the wives and pets
as they rummaged through
the ice box, helping themselves
to your beer.  They took over
the couch and love seat, spilling
ripple chips across the cushions.

Soon they were immersed in some
show they both binged on, using
your Netflix account.  They got
to be absolute nuisances, those

We worked together – the first
time in a long time.  We mustered
all the faith we could.  Eventually
they were out of your house, out
of our hair.

It took us all day to remove all doubt.





What 3 a.m. Becomes

Lake Eola


“That night was a dark day. Of course, all nights are dark days, because night is simply a badly lit version of day….”

― Lemony Snicket


Cries in the dark no

longer feral – sky no

longer dark well

after dusk.  Our stars,

once rulers now faded

as our gods.


Night, this millennium

remains torturous

to those without sleep.







Punctilious I Am (b)


…it sometimes goes.)  You wake –

up… groggy, because the alarm


you out of a deep,

deep sleep.

Your heart is knocking

on your head,


your eyes are filled

with gravel as if your young son was playing

at the beach of your dreams.

* * *

You sleep –


when you least expect

it.  (That’s just how…



Posted to dVerse Poets Pub, Meeting the Bar.  Björn is asking us to deal with poetic punctuation and enjambment — breaking rules, breaking lines, breaking table lamps if we’re not careful.  We are also supposed to spill the beans about what rules we are breaking.  But, aw, you know me… I wouldn’t break rules.  🙂