Saturday, July 29, 2017

Terrapins Cross The Road

for Johnny

Terrapins cross the road before it rains,
I explain.
His expression doesn't change -
same desire to please me.

He's 58 going on 3;
retarded, as it used to be
called, before bureaucracy
turned him into a person with . . . name malady.

Now there's outings he doesn't want to take.
Moves to integrate he doesn't want to make.
Terrapins cross the road before it rains,
I explain.
His expression doesn't change -
same desire to please me.

For Karin's prompt at Real Toads

Note:  Not long after the passage of the American's with Disabilities Act, the federal government outlawed the practice of placing otherwise healthy individuals with developmental disabilities in nursing home.  However, it allowed persons who had lived in nursing homes most of their lives (an many had!) to remain in place as long as special programs for independent living and community integration were provided.  The results were mixed and sometimes hilarious.  The story above is true. I laugh every time I remember pulling over to the side of the road to capture a terrapin for my client to examine, and my client's long-suffering tolerance for my enthusiasm.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Just Right

In the room where we do our living,
everybody has a chair;
Mama Bear, Papa Bear, Cub
(don't call her Baby Bear).

Mama Bear has a rocking chair
to rock back upright despite the news
on the TV that's always on
(she doesn't care for silence).

Papa Bear, when he's home at night, thrones
himself in leather and puts his feet up
(he's had a long day);
now, he's master of the remote.

The Cub (don't call her Baby Bear)
reluctantly rides the couch.
She's got better things to do,
but she's occasionally persuaded

by strawberry shortcake or guilt
to watch Law and Order with the elders.
Who killed Goldilocks?
Just right.

For The Tuesday Platform at Real Toads

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Hand Wash Only

The tag said hand wash only,
but I got busy living life

and careless tossed it

shrunk it down
at least a size.

Oh, my precious, precious hair shirt!
I've worn it most my life,

but now it's tight
and doesn't fit right anymore.

For Poetry Pantry at Poets United

Saturday, July 22, 2017

400 Songbirds

At the foot of a building that is not a tree,
reflected in glass that is not sky,
400 songbirds broken in flight

litter the concrete that is not grass,
the cracked pavement that is merely a path
to the next stoplight.

High above on the 14th floor
at the branch of the bank
where my name's on the door

a crash - a boom -
as of nature at war
with the beast of a building that is not a tree

and its swindling glass that is not sky.
We're drawn from our cubicle nests,
every eye

on the concrete below that is not grass,
on the pavement below that is merely a path

to the next stoplight.
400 songbirds broken in flight.

A rough draft inspired by a recent news story for Kim's prompt at Real Toads

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Sin Eater

Related image 

Sin Eater,

you missed my hearse
and now I'm bound for hell or worse.

I've guilt within this gilded coffin;
feed before I waste and rotten.

How can I fly with frothy wings
deadweighted by life's sordid things?

Sin Eater,

meet me at my grave;
my tender, tainted soul to save!

For Fireblossom Friday at Real Toads