Anything Helps

Anything Helps

He stood alone in the center island formed
by the intersection of Kolb and 22nd Street. 
 
Sheets of white paper held in one hand flapped like 
seagull wings on the stirred currents of whizzing cars.
 
The light turned red.
Cars slowed and rested.
 
Windows slid down.
Elbows protruded.
 
"Mornin', poet. “Any rhymes today?
 Need a giggle terrible like.”
 
“Read yesterday's to my kids at the dinner table.
Got somethin' funny?" 
 
“Mornin', Sir. I need a good cry.
 Touch my heart. It’s hurtin' bad sore.”

He walked the line. Leaned down. Dished ‘em out.
"Mornin', friend," he said. "Good to see you."
   
“Been thinkin’ ‘bout yuh." He smiled.
"Wrote this special for you."

“Hope this helps,” he said. 
"Things are gonna get better."
 
The light changed color.
 Traffic edged away like a reluctant tide going out.
 
Some waved the words out the window in a 
 see yuh later, kinda way—
 
and his ribs ached 
from the banging goin’ on inside. 

Eternity

Eternity

Though I've thought about it muchly,

I have no idea what Heaven is like,
or if I will be welcome there.

I've had hunches before,
but many of them proved wrong.

Life carried me away
from home some time ago,

but I still wonder if,
when my turn comes,

despite my faithless life and multitude of sin,
Eternity might be edited in.

Tissue

Tissue

When lovely spring blooms arrive 
after a dreary winter's gloom,

and feathers tickle your nose,
like pepper cast up by sweeping broom,

let's be wise and sensible,
and not quick remedy assume.

better to be proactive, 
and purchase boxes of 

of, of, of,

lilac scented
ti,
ti,
ti-  shoo! 

oh, nebbermind,
tumbody plede padd duh dissue.

Unmerited Finery

Unmerited Finery

She said, “Open wide.”
i did.
she said, “Close down.”
i did.

even though i’m barely
a commoner, 
more the 
peasant or serf,

she treated me as 
Royalty,

placing a crown on
an exhausted molar.

“thank you,” i said, 

and hurried home
toward

Buckinghorse Palace
lest
i be found out.

Genesis, Revised Edition

Genesis, Revised Edition

In the beginning
there was a constant
stream of noise,

and then God

sat down on a wooden stool,

and like grandmother,
intent upon her business of
snapping harvested beans
for the canning jars,

God broke that noise

into discrete pieces
called words,

knowing the Tower of Babel's
foundation had already
been laid


that we might
understand each other,

and laugh,

and love.

Treadmill

Treadmill
 
Before fitness gyms 
were invented,

a young man's 

muscles

usually came
from helping 

Father

lift the stones,

and fetching 
water and firewood

for 

Mother.
 
All the while,
 
Sister
 
studied her 
 
face
 
in the looking glass,
 
and dreamt of the
 
ripped Lad

(apprenticed to the Smithy)
 
holding her in his arms.  

Cobbles Speak Up

Cobbles Speak Up

"Do you envy our beauty?"
the blooms asked the cobblestones.

"Envy? Not at all," came the reply.

"Surely our scent?"

"Envy your scent? Never," came the reply.

"Don't be stubborn. Our delightful shape?"

"What is shape?" the cobbles asked.
"Time and water made us what we are."

"But humans praise us,"
the flowers insisted.

"That is nothing," the stones answered.
"They caress us each day."

Speed Demons

Speed Demons

In our frantic dash through life,
we’ve devised

microwave ovens,
self-checkout lanes,
next day delivery,
and
blazing gigahertz.

Thank God for

slow summer days

that entice sweet corn seed seven feet toward heaven,
lingering kisses in the night,
and
the nine loving months that mother and child
are one.