Sunday, April 9, 2017

3 poems


by wiggly jones "the little hippie boy"




all


god is love
trump is bad
jesus died for your sins
a woman has a right to her own body

you can’t fight city hall
jet fuel can’t melt steel beams
this country was built on the backs of slaves
you’ve never met a payroll in your life



turn it into a parking lot
how come there are still monkeys
if men had babies abortion would be a sacrament
property is theft

the people have taken to the streets
because the streets belong to the people
al gore has a private jet and a private beach
what difference does it make how people love








one



the wheel turns
the candle burns
the moon is the sun
all is one

the rain falls
the telemarketer calls
the burger is the bun
all is one

the clouds drift
the fork lifts
boredom is fun
all is one

life is war
with no reason for
people like guns
all is one

click click
throw a stick
see spot run
all is one

the loser wins
the dryer spins
the colors run
all is one








17 things to do in my next life



1. start a new religion, based on peace and love

2. eat healthier food

3. look people in the eye more

4. write at least two poems every day

5. write a novel every year

6. write at least one 2,000 page novel

7. try to be nicer to dogs - maybe if i like them more, they will like me more

8. learn about astronomy

9. try to learn to draw

10. don’t laugh at other peple’s opinions

11. realize that the only truth is that there is no truth

12. don’t sleep so much

13. make lists of things to do every day, and do them

14. go for long walks in all sorts of weather

15. smile more

16. don’t watch television

17. stay off the internet (and/or whatever might replace it)



Saturday, April 1, 2017

fate


by horace p sternwall

illustrations by roy dismas and konrad kraus






the fire was burning low.

thurston and beresford were the only members of the club still in the room.

“you know,” said thurston, “i was reading something in the gazette this morning.” he paused. “i can’t now remember what it was, but somehow it put me in mind of something. something that happened a long time ago. to a fellow named stafford- wiggins. i don’t suppose you would have known him?”

beresford made a sort of grunt which thurston took as indicating that beresford had indeed not known stafford-wiggins.


“no, i didn’t suppose you would,” thurston continued. “he was a young chap starting out in the service in the corps - the diplomatic corps - at the same time as myself. which, of course, was not exactly yesterday. anyway, all of us - all of us young fellows starting out - thought stafford-wiggins was quite a comer. so, one bright spring afternoon old sir edward chandry - who was in charge of sort of shepherding us through our apprenticeship - invited all of us - all of us young chaps - to the races. at ascot, if i remember correctly.

one of the things that impressed us about stafford-wiggins was the amazing talent he had for arriving at any event or appointment at exactly the right time - never so much as a minute early or late.


so, all the rest of us had gathered in front of the track with sir edward and lady chandry, and we were waiting for stafford-wiggins. the more forthright among us had been laughingly assuring sir edward and his consort that he would most assuredly arrive just in time.

and sure enough, he did just that.

a few of the fellows began chaffing him good-naturedly as he stepped down from his coach, straightening his jacket and getting ready to pay his respects to sir edward and lady chandry, whom i happened to be standing just behind.


“that young man,” lady chandry observed in a low voice to sir edward, indicating stafford-wiggins, “does not know how to wear a top hat.”

this was bad enough, but worse was to come.

“nor,” lady chandry added , “will he ever.”

“i am afraid you are right, my dear,” sir edward agreed as he put on a smile and stepped forward to greet stafford-wiggins.

sentence had been passed, as quickly as a leaf might fall, and of course there was no appeal or any notion of one from the condemned.


i remember that i made a few successful wagers that afternoon, which needless to say made more of an impression on me than any thoughts - deep or otherwise - i might have had about poor staford-wiggins.

in due course, stafford-wiggins was posted to the balkans or spanish guyana or some such. for all practical purposes, he was never heard of or from again. “

thurston paused again, “funny, isn’t it, how a single - what would you call it? not even a misstep, really, can determine a fellow’s fate.”

but beresford did not reply, as he had fallen asleep.



Sunday, March 12, 2017

lonely





by alice marston sternwall


everybody hates the lonely
don’t let them tell you otherwise
you are having a nice conversation
then you see the desperation in their eyes

all the years of solitude
come rising up like foam
in the flickering beams of your sympathy
they finally see their way home

their dreams and sad opinions
flow through the night and into dawn
their clutching hands reach out to you
but you are already gone

perhaps when you lie dying
in a little room alone
you will give a thought to those desperate ones
and regret your heart of stone



Thursday, March 2, 2017

a ballad



by horace p sternwall





the world is bad but should be good
robin hood slept in king john’s wood
king john was bad, but robin was good
let us sing a song of robin hood

o merrily merrily merrily we go
all of good cheer we be
fair robin doth dwell in the deep deep woods
dwelleth there doth he

the king put a bounty on robin’s head
and swore to hang him from a tree
o merrily merrily merrily we go
all of good cheer be we

maid marian rode by the castle gate
she caught the bad king’s eye
all merrily she rode away
between the forest and the sky

all merrily we ride away
with robin and his merry men
and we’ll stay in the wood be it understood
until the good times come again

friar tuck stood up with a flagon of ale
he drank it down right strong
o merrily merrily merrily we go
singing this merry song



Tuesday, February 28, 2017

2 poems


by chuck leary




poem

how nasty life is!
and how even worse people are!
how i wish i were an anchovy
in a can on the shelf of an abandoned supermarket

or even better
on a pizza half-eaten
and tossed aside in its cardboard box
on a sidewalk in the rain

a million cab drivers weep
dreaming of neanderthal maidens
peanut butter and jelly sandwiches
peanut butter and marshmallow sandwiches







sorrow


i am sorry i find life ridiculous
and can not share in your joys and sorrows
perhaps after a good night’s sleep
i will feel better tomorrow



Monday, January 30, 2017

briefcase


by chuck leary




it was dark

i was lost

i was despised

and i had lost my briefcase

when my brother and his stuckup friends showed up i left the hotel room

and went down to the news stand to find the latest best seller

but they didn’t have it in stock

i bought a pack of gum instead

when i left the news stand most of the lights in the city had gone out

there were a few lights n the distance

but i did not think they were the hotel’s

i started walking

i realized i did not have my briefcase

did i leave it at the news stand?

did i leave it at the hotel?

i got loster and loster

i thought of how awful my whole life had been

and how everybody laughed at me and despised me

and barely tolerated my existence

and what a failure i was

it got darker and darker

finally i ended up at a police station

i was told to take a seat on a bench against the wall

when i tried to ask sone questions

the young woman at the desk told me in no uncertain terms to be quiet

finally she summoned me over

tapping on her keyboard she asked wearily

all right, what exactly was in this wonderful briefcase?



Monday, January 23, 2017

2 poems by 2 poets






solitary walker

by ethan emerson "grandpa" sternwall


i lived my life
and it is coming to an end
i never had an enemy
i never had a friend

no one ever cared
what i thought of this or that
i walked the roads alone
and never wore a hat

i walked in the sunshine
i walked in the rain
men viewed me with suspicion
and women with disdain

the world will no more notice
than it did when i was born
when my number has been called
and my ticket has been torn







chicken

by wiggly jones, "the little hippie boy"


the chicken sandwich you ate today
was once a living creature
and walked in the sunlight
examining reality’s features

how it loved to see the sky
as it awoke to each new day
now it rests on a sesame seed bun
because that is humans’ way



Monday, January 9, 2017

proposition 233


by f. flynn

illustrations by danny delacroix






here’s another story about some aliens.

where this time?

some place starting with a t - a long name.

where’s that?

i don’t know - i could look it up.

don’t bother. will they be coming around?

it says that emissaries will be sent all over the globe.


so if i went out to wendy’s i might see some emissaries ?

maybe. it doesn’t say exactly where they are going.

what are they up to this time?

let’s see - they got some kind of vote, they want humans to vote on something.

i did that the last time.

well, you can do it again, if you want.

i might, if it’s not too much trouble.

it’s called proposition 233.

*


proposition 233 reads as follows:

the ambassadors of the empire of b————— offer a pair of pills to the “humans” whom we have determined to be one of the dominant life forms on this planet. the fifth most dominant, to be exact.

the two pills must be taken together or not at all.

the entire “human race” must take the pills or not.

a vote may be taken, in which any human who wishes may take part, to determine whether the entire human race will or will not take the pills.


we, the ambassadors of the empire of b———————, will be happy to administer this vote.

there will be one vote, and it will be final.

the effects of the two pills are as follows:

pill “a” will change the outward forms of humans.

all humans will have the same form, the same “color” (according to human perception), the same weight and height at birth, the same weight and height through five clearly defined stages of development, and identical facial features at each stage of development.


“sex” will be eliminated.

pill “b” will change human brains.

humans will no longer see the world in binary terms.

there will be no more “us” and “them”.

there will be no more “debates”, “arguments”, “controversies”, etc. humans will perceive the universe as civilized beings do - as one.

the combined results of these pills will be to eliminate so-called war, hatred, racism, injustice, inequality, oppression, exploitation, alienation, competition, survival of the fittest, and other ills. it will also eliminate separate "cultures" for different groups of humsns.


a “yes” vote on proposition 233 will signify a desire to take the pills, a “no” vote to not take them.

if “yes” wins, we, the emissaries of the empire of b——————, will be happy to distribute the pills and oversee their administration.

if “no” wins, we will be on our way, and wish the “human race” all the best.

in either case, we may return in the future, with other propositions for other inhabitants of this planet.

*

the vote was taken. of the 20 billion human inhabitants of earth, approximately 9 billion voted.

the final vote was 8.5 billion to 0.5 billion.


*

do you think that

a) 8.5 billion voted “yes” and 0.5 billion voted “no”

or

b) 8.5 billion voted “no” and 0.5 voted “yes”?

how would you have voted?



Saturday, January 7, 2017

2 more poems


by chuck leary




heisenberg and st basil of cappadocia play gin rummy


apprehending the benediction of contraindication
despite the emptiness of flowers
growing happily in the interstices
of jellyfished kineticism

the loose matriculation of narcissism
overflows the percipient quagmire
in the ruins of a snow-covered tower

under the vertiginous wasteland
of the expanding yawning zeitgeist

but the zeitgeist has no amanuensis
as barracudas chomp the debris
of the empire of the forty graves







slender



i hate poetry
but i love slender volumes of verse

i used to tell myself
i was not a voyeur

i didn’t understand porn
or want to look at naked bodies

at flabby boobs
and dicks and asses

or stand in the dark
in the wind and rain

looking through lighted windows
at unsuspecting humans

doing - what?

but naked souls

that
is a different matter

i admit it now
i am worse

than the sad peeper
seeking a glimpse of ass or boob

everything pales
beside seeing naked souls

i always thought stand up comedians
were the bravest people in the world

nobody could be
more naked

in front of a crowd
with no cover and no excuses


they either “killed”
or “died “

of course i never
had the guts to try it myself

but if you can’t do standup
or performance art

or read poetry out loud
what you can do

is write poetry
in slender volumes

forget zines and anthologies
where the naked ones

can huddle together
and hide behind each other



no, it must be
a lone slender volume

the distillation
of a single naked

and lonely
soul

the fewer words
on a page the better

nothing
is more naked

than a book
of bad poetry

except, perhaps
a book of ordinary poetry


?

Friday, January 6, 2017

2 poems


by chuck leary




something


i always thought that
someday

i would find
something

somewhere

on a dark highway
on a rainy street

in a dimly lit cafe
on a lonely road

on an empty subway car
in milwaukee

a motel room
in las cruces new mexico

standing over a juke box
in manitoba or tokyo

at a bus station
in vladivostok

something

maybe not love

or peace
or illumination

or divine revelation
but something

something i would only know
when it happened







suitcase



i was not worried
about losing the group

even though
my black suitcase

wth my new novel in it
of which i was so proud

was in the group baggage
being taken to the bus

downstairs
under the curved marble staircase

when the old woman
with the round lined face

leaned over to me
and whispered

“you are quite a character”
and laughed softly

she and another old woman
began talking in french

but so softly
i could not understand them

when i went down the stairs
the bus was gone

but i was not worried
because

“i knew the area”

wide polished vistas
in gleaming red and orange

and white porcelain tunnels

with a hint of rain
and the cafeterias were closed

i kept going in circles
but was not worried

except a little bit
about the suitcase with my novel

i was never in a dream

which was more obviously
“just a dream”

but when i woke up
i was surprised