Tuesday, June 30, 2015


               A walk with Gyp and Tiggy on their leads
               Is always an adventure for their noses,
               The landscape like a news report each reads:
               Reports of poops and pees more than of roses,

               But best of all is sniffing out a bone
               Chucked from the window of a worker’s truck
               Snatched on the sly and savored as her own—
               A putrid, gross, delicious slimy snack.

               Good luck on wresting such great treats away
               From the clenched jaws of either of these girls
               Growling protectively if you should try:
               You’d think these bones were precious gems and pearls.

                    One way is to negotiate a trade,
                    So bring a treat: that’s how a deal is made.


Monday, June 29, 2015


“Realizing that our consciousness is immortal would give us the assurance we need to experience joy in living and tranquility in dying.”
—Ervin Laszlo

               How is it that mere matter grows to mind,
               Or are things quite the other way designed:
               Mind being perennial and giving rise
               To all above and all beneath the skies?

               Then when we die, our minds re-elevate
               To their primordial, perennial state
               Awaiting possibly another round,
               Another destiny toward which they’re bound.

                    And so mind cycles through eternity
                    Then manifests just now as you and me.


Sunday, June 28, 2015


               Odd thoughts are milling round inside my head
               As I seek something needing to be said
               Because I’m in my morning writing mode
               And searching for some scene or episode:

               Perhaps some recent happening to relate
               Or some conundrum I might contemplate
               Or an old theme I should revisit now
               Unfurrowing at last my wrinkled brow.

               Turn where I may, no subject suitable
               Appears that might have grown beautiful
               If rendered carefully in well-wrought verse,
               But this my Muse refuses to disburse.

                    No help for it, no easing of my sorrow,
                    But count on this: I shall be back tomorrow.


Friday, June 26, 2015


               Dismantling an oak that’s been your friend
               And home to families of squirrels and birds
               In your backyard is hard to apprehend
               And will not be relieved by soothing words.
               The best I hope to do in writing this
               Is to commemorate the fond rapport
               We’ve long enjoyed and now shall always miss,
               As will its former tenants even more.
               Its massive branches shorn and broad trunk sliced,
               It seems the victim of an ancient rite
               Demanding something grand be sacrificed
               To spare us from some dark impending blight.
                    It’s true this tree had power to crush our home,
                    But that’s a subject for another poem.


Thursday, June 25, 2015


               The laurel oaks are ageing all around
               Our neighborhood, and several in our yard
               Are shedding limbs and showing they’re unsound,
               But yet the thought of losing them is hard.

               On top of that, it costs a cool six thou
               Dismembering and dismantling only one,
               The yard-wide trunk and every arching bough,
               Then hauling off what weighs over a ton.

               As if to urge us further comes the news
               The season’s drawing near for hurricanes,
               Another way for nature to abuse
               All creatures great and small with lingering pains.

                    The squirrels, though, cavorting round the trunk
                    Enjoy the day and say my fears are bunk.


Wednesday, June 24, 2015


               I’ve lived my life where civil peace prevails
               And never known war but in the news
               Or movies where such violence boosts sales
               And ultimately all the bad guys lose.

               Is it conceivable that someday hence
               Our race will have evolved beyond resort
               To force, aggressive action and defense,
               All differences being settled in a court?

               First, we must think much better of our race
               And honor what we’re named for: sapience,
               Repenting our long history of disgrace
               While cultivating love as recompense.

                    Our heroes must be models who inspire
                    All souls to do what history will admire.


Tuesday, June 23, 2015

               That Kimmie loves you, you will happily know
               Not only by her words but by her deeds
               Assuring you it ever shall be so
               That she’ll be well attentive to your needs,

               And such a love elicits in reply
               An eagerness to shower her in kind
               With kindliness on which she can rely,
               With love toward which you’re eagerly inclined.

               All this, I’ll happily say, is just my case,
               And I shall labor to deserve such love,
               Which yet is freely given as pure grace
               Such as descends on us from heaven above.

                    That Kimmie loves me is my greatest boon
                    Attested here, the twenty-third of June.


Monday, June 22, 2015


               What should we make of us, the highest up
               On Mother Nature’s Earthly chain of being?
               Did not our Maker mean for us to sup
               With angels and but follow His decreeing?

               Yet that benign behest we disobeyed
               By lusting for a fruit that He’d forbidden,
               Which meant that soon our status would degrade
               As from that glorious garden we were chidden.

               Is there no way we mortals might return
               To that perfection which we once had known,
               Or are we now and always doomed to burn
               In Hell, forever more to weep and groan?

                    There is one way to come to blessed accord:
                    Just give your soul to Jesus, our dear Lord.


Sunday, June 21, 2015




               I stand with those who say that Cosmic Mind
               Is that which brings all matter into being,
               An intellect by which all is designed,
               The universe refined by its decreeing.

               The farther we explore the cosmic realm
               Discovering vast sailing galaxies,
               It grows more clear there’s someone at the helm
               Whom scientists may know by slow degrees.

               This intellect that underlies all things,
               From which our own intelligence has sprung,
               That Lord of which each holy hymnal sings
               Is praised aloud in every nation’s tongue.

                    That all we see and know could come by chance
                    Is folly deeper knowing soon supplants.


Saturday, June 20, 2015


               As warped and wayward as humanity
               Can be, too smart sometimes for our own good,
               Our mind in service to insanity,
               Incapable of reckoning as it should,

               What might have been this planet’s paragon,
               The pinnacle of evolution’s thrust
               As measured by intelligence, not brawn,
               Has proved exemplary in quenchless lust.

               If there’s still hope we may at last grow wise
               Before we’ve ruined our rare habitat,
               Then our sad race will finally realize
               Each one must be a true aristocrat,

                    Which means we’re ruled by only what is best:
                    To master this is our most urgent test.


Friday, June 19, 2015


               Imagining that life is like a flame
               That shines its little while and then goes out,
               A game about accomplishment and fame
               Where one may prove a hero or a lout—

               All that is off the mark: we do not die,
               For spirits live eternally as souls,
               And may incarnate for another try
               Experiencing not one but many roles.

               Time’s a vacation from eternity,
               A chance to get some traction and to know
               The deeds here chronicled as history,
               An opportunity to change and grow.

                    If life’s a flame, it burns eternally

                    With heaven’s light—or else infernally.


Thursday, June 18, 2015


               Caregivers and caretakers are the same,
               A paradox of terminology;
               Though opposites ostensibly, their aim’s
               Identical: relieving malady.



               Though less than precious Jesus, our dear lord,

               A loving puppy still can bring accord
               To troubled hearts, and has the power to bless
               Us with a canine kind of sacredness.



               Lumosity is offering a test
               For measuring the aptness of my brain
               And whether it’s performing at its best
               Or showing signs of weakness or of strain.

               I’m thinking that I’ll prove my mental mettle
               By simply sitting here to write a sonnet,
               Which ought to show my mind is in good fettle
               And that, faced with a challenge, I’m right on it.

               So far so good: the octave’s rounded out
               And now we take a turn to bring it home
               Having made clear what topic it’s about
               While meeting all the measures of this poem.

                    The couplet is the clincher to make sure
                    That it’s not only bright but will endure.


Tuesday, June 16, 2015


               Well, maybe not, but let’s just say it is—
               A sonnet let it be, since that’s my mode
               And in the manner that Shakespeare wrote his;
               A ballad’s not my thing, nor is an ode.

               But now I’m losing time, and space decreases,
               And I have yet to settle on a theme
               Since after fourteen lines a sonnet ceases
               Once running out the course of its rhyme scheme.

               My theme is that of Hamlet’s father’s ghost:
               “Remember me!” for that is why I write,
               And like the Bard, to leave behind a boast
               That Time will spare my words from endless night.

                    No, surely this is not the way to go—
                    Another day, dear Lord—spare me your blow!


Sunday, June 14, 2015




               My episode of clear noetic bliss
               Away at college in my freshman year,
               Not since repeated with such emphasis,
               I’ve often fondly wished would reappear.

               It seemed, I’d say, that I had touched the Ground
               Of Being, connecting with the cosmic Source,
               And briefly all restrictions were unbound
               As I was set upon my mortal course.

               Now, that is all a visionary gleam
               Dim in my memory, yet still a spark
               Reminding me of what was then a beam
               To guide me out beyond the mundane dark.

                    This mystical dimension beyond sense
                    Reveals that Cosmic Caring is immense.


Saturday, June 13, 2015

"Gotta bite?"

Mead Garden, Winter Park, Florida



               The birds this morning are all sending tweets
               From tree to tree to spread the latest news
               About what berries now are out, what treats
               Available, and posting their reviews.
                    But now the air is still, their tummies full,
                    And they resume their daily schedule.


Friday, June 12, 2015


               The secret that we formalists find out
               And “free verse” poets can’t appreciate
               When they decide rebelliously to flout
               Restrictions that have made the Classics great

               Is that there’s “magic in the web” of verse
               That patters out until it finds what rhyme
               The supplicated Muse will then disburse
               From deep recesses of the mind’s Sublime.

               The paradox is that this strange restraint
               That so much narrows down one’s range of thought
               And might well try the patience of a saint
               Miraculously provides what one has sought:

                    As rhymes and meters happily embrace,
                    The poet enjoys the blessed Muse’s grace.


Thursday, June 11, 2015


               Beyond what’s physical and seems concrete,
               There’s more to what we call reality,
               For it takes mind to make the scene complete,
               Though how that’s so remains a mystery.

               Mentality must be a kind of net,
               A web pervading all of cosmic space
               By means of which plans and directions get
               Transmitted instantly from place to place.

               Such metaphysicality remains               
                A mystery we only can suppose 
                Is operational on subtle planes,               
                The source from which reality arose.

               Just as this poem manifests its being,
                All of reality is mind’s decreeing.



               That we are here to think and marvel how
               All this we see and feel has come to be
               And wonder if behind it all a Thou
               Exists, some Ultimate Reality,
               A cosmological defining mind,
               The primal architect of everything,
               Who out of utter chaos has designed
               That universe of which he now is king—
               All this remains a mystery to ponder,
               Unlikely ever to be finally solved
               For such deep matters always prove beyond our
               Ken, though in our minds perennially revolved.
                    Perhaps our never knowing this is best
                    Because it is our purpose here to quest.


Sunday, June 7, 2015


               “Something unknown is doing we don’t know what,”
               Said Arthur Eddington, astronomer,
               As he gazed out upon the vasty glut
               Of distant galaxies we now infer
               Are parts of multiverses yet unseen
               Beyond the scope of all infinitude
               Where space and time amazingly careen,
               Though our technology cannot intrude.

               For all we know, there’s much we never will,
               Because the cosmos far exceeds our scope,
               Yet human curiosity may still
               Surmise and what we cannot grasp may grope
               In our imaginations to conceive:
               The most compelling story to believe.



               The word unique best suits our Garrison:
               There never was nor will be such a one
               As he who hosts The Prairie Home Companion
               Heard from the mountain tops to the Grand Canyon,
               From sea to shining sea on NPR
               Each Saturday at home or in your car:
               Two hours of songs and skits and stories told
               In ways appealing to both young and old,
               Foremost of which is Keillor’s monologue, a
               New chapter of his long-continued saga
               Of Lake Wobegon, somewhere in Minnesota,
               Which but for him we’d care not an iota;
                    Instead, we listen, amiably enthralled
                    As, week by week, more stories are installed.


Thursday, June 4, 2015

               At the next stage of our humanity,
               We’ll have transcended the insanity
               Of war and other senseless violence
               That saner, wiser reckoning prevents,
               Adding another sapience to our name,
               Absolving us at last of ancient blame
               While ushering in an era of accord
               That we for eons have been yearning toward.

               What then?  Perhaps when we at last have shown
               Such amity, we’ll find we’re not alone
               And those elsewhere who see how we’ve grown wise
               Will visit us in peace to be allies
               In furthering our quest to understand
               The scope of what the cosmic Source has planned.


Wednesday, June 3, 2015


               There is no human need for violence
               Except occasionally for self-defense;
               Our malice in the past must be outgrown
               And viciousness we can no more condone.

               Humanity stands at a turning point
               And may another way of being anoint
               As holier and healthier than when
               We thought the world a thieves’ or lion’s den.

               Although this be a visionary plea,
               What’s sane in us most surely will agree
               That only peace and amity can make
               Up for our dreadful history of ache:

                    That pain will pass if we can rise above
                    All animosity and live in love.


Tuesday, June 2, 2015


for Nancy Abrams and Joel Primack

               The Universe triumphantly made us:
               For all we know, the only ones who know
               What’s going on at large and can discuss
               The implications of this cosmic show,

               But still it seems the probability
               That other creatures with intelligence
               Have somewhere else emerged in this wide sea
               Of lustrous galaxies must be immense.

               Life and intelligence are implicate
               Within the matrix of the Cosmos’ womb,
               And thus Creation has the mother wit
               To keep its far-flung progeny from doom.

                    Yet if we are a singularity,
                    How awesome's our responsibility.


Monday, June 1, 2015


               Memories, dreams, reflections are the stuff
               From which my penny poems are made each day
               And typically a small prompt is enough
               To set each one galumphing on its way.

               Today it’s my old college memory
               Of “Penny Poems” sold at the bookstore:
               “Poems, Penny Each” read the marquee
               Showing a drummer from a marching corps.

               I wasn’t writing any poems then
               Though as an English major reading them
               And stashing those experiences for when
               The motive came to try to carve a gem.

                    My verses, though, won’t cost you anything:
                    Just sit and read—pretend you hear me sing.