sunday school lesson…

still steaming
from
a staff meeting
i
visited
aunt bea
when
she heard why
i was upset
she said
you’ve never followed
conventional ways
of
thought
always opting
to
never
fully conform
or
reply
in an expected manner
i recall
when you were young
and
attending sunday school
one christmas
just before the annual
reenactment
of
the nativity
in which
your older sister
had been
cast in the role
of
shepherd
and
you
as
one
of the wise men
the teacher
asked your older sister
how she might
find the new-born
she said
follow the star
and
when
you
were asked
you said
follow
the shepherd

diagnosis code r41.84…

now
i’m not saying
there’s
any truth
to this
but
when
i was young
the
old folks
talked about
being
born
with a veil
over
your eyes
meaning
you could
see
spirits
and such
but
i’ve
never
bought into
the
i see dead people
kind
of thought
but
i must admit
i did have
a few
things happen
that
well
rattled
my cage
but
being
an educated fellow
i knew that
any mental door
to
spirits
or
anything else
could be closed
employing
freud
or
some other
psychological guru’s
mumble-jumble
and
i could
become
like
everyone else
in
this nation
denying
the death
and
destruction
before me

 

servitude…

the brown bag prophet
stopped me
and
asked
where’d
you go
to
high school
i
said
a small town
in
ohio
he laughed
so
i suppose
you never heard
of
martina arroyo
who
the opera singer
world-famous
got
her own
foundation
and
such
to help
others
in the arts
his look
turned serious
as
he said
some chains
are
invisible
the
hiding
of
information
that
provides
the soul
with
pride
is
a starvation
that
forms links
of
bondage
stronger
than
steel
he handed me
a black history calendar
and
walked away

picking dandelion greens…

aunt bea
has a patch
of grass
in the front
of her home
on
saturdays
i go over
to her house
and
tend to the lawn
last week
i went
to spray
the dandelions
as
i started
aunt bea
said
you never did like
dandelions
i recall when mom
would send you
and
your cousin tommy
out to the fields
to pick
dandelion greens
for
dinner
it was never one
of
your favorite chores
but
you two found
some reprieve
in the task
since there were
wild strawberries
growing in the field
and
for some reason
you were never
too hungry
after returning home
seems
like doing
an unpleasant task
can have some
hidden rewards
now
if only
the congress
could figure that out

 

hypothesis on redundancy…

each night
the same prayers
were said
before
meals
and
bed
the child wondered
in his head
whether or not
god
had a hearing problem
and so
like with his grandmother
things needed
to be
repeated
or
whether god
was like
uncle joe
terribly forgetful
needing
to be reminded
daily
of the chores
assigned to him
by grandfather
perhaps
neither
of those
were true
perhaps
god was
an obstinate child
refusing to respond
to requests in prayers
unless
the number of requests
equaled
the critical breaking point
of his parents’ patience
that
breaking point
just before
unwarranted punishment
that
seemed to be
the most logical conclusion
and
indeed
one
he could
identify with

quick draw contest…

quick-draw-contest

Modified Image: Image Source: http://www.historyisnowmagazine.com

aunt bea
pulled out an old photo
of me
all decked out
as a cowboy
complete with
a genuine cowhide
double holster
holding white
simulated
pearl
handled pistols
she
said
as i recall
you
and
your cousins
were into
tv westerns
gun smoke
hopalong cassidy
and
such
you boys
would stand out front
practicing your quick draws
producing enough noise
from those cap guns
to send
the neighborhood dogs
into a barking
frenzy
back then
you didn’t
consider
the real consequences
of carrying out
a quick draw contest
with others
how death
was the real winner
seems like
the new administration
hasn’t quite
realized
that yet
or
doesn’t care