Thursday, April 26, 2018

a walk in the rain

i decided to do something different
and went for a walk in the rain
and looked for signs in puddles
the mystery of life to explain

i met a cat with a serious face
and a dog that was wagging its tail
they passed me by with a look in their eye
that said wisdom was not for sale

i passed a bag lady drinking a fanta
with the daily news spread on her head
a taxi splashed me with muddy water
i wished i was home in bed

i entered a store of convenience
a lottery ticket to buy
the drawing was not until tuesday
i returned to the street with a sigh

i saw a man in a doorway
and thought i knew his name
but i passed him by without asking
he might know my secret shame

i wish it would rain forever
and nothing ever get dry
i would meet myself at the river
and look myself in the eye

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

i already saw this movie more than once

i have walked this way before
likewise, seen that moonlit shore
this deserted garden looks familiar
and oh those distant hills, yeah

it’s a dirty shame
but it all looks the same
every night i return
to this street but never learn

who is looking down on me
from that bridge above the sea
from that ship in the night
as it floats away from sight

and the light that briefly shines
through the lonesome pines
as the car runs out of gas
yes, this way we all must pass

and the house on the hill
i should get there, but never will
i walk and walk and walk
there are no numbers on the clock

Tuesday, April 10, 2018


i was walking
because i wanted a sandwich

not an apple or an orange
or a soft drink

but a sandwich
i kept on walking

block after block
even though i knew

i had to get back
to the conference

the blocks were long
and filled with people

people different from me
wearing white t shirts and wifebeaters

and speaking a different language
they were not hostile

they just ignored me
it was getting dark

there were stores
that sold fruit and vegetables and scratch cards

and coke and moxie and fanta
but no sandwiches

i wanted a sandwich
there were no cafes or sub shops

one little place had books
tom swift and hardy boy books

but no sandwiches
if i kept on walking

i would end up in yonkers
or in albany

i wanted a sandwich so bad
but i had to get back

to the conference
before it got completely dark

l am so unhappy
nobody likes me

this is the story of my life
life is so unfair

i told this dream to nellie
and she said

“why didn’t you just go into one of the little stores
and ask them to make you a sandwich?”

Monday, April 2, 2018


time is a dog named joe
and i am a ball
in joe’s mouth

he is running away
out of the park
and down the street

i shout
come back, joe

but he doesn’t come back

he runs across the street

into the traffic
and gets hit by a bus

he always was a bad dog

Thursday, December 21, 2017


jenny was a girl
who lived on a hill
i loved her once
and i always will

i loved her like a river
a river so deep
“stop following me,
you disgusting creep”

jenny was a girl
who disappeared in the mist
went to the city
and became a feminist

love is a street
than can run one way
but it still burns bright
no matter what they say

i look at the sunset
and the midnight sky
i will always love jenny
until the day i die

i loved jenny
but she didn’t love me
that is just the way
it was meant to be

i wrote this poem
from the heart
is it a “good” poem?
- don’t start

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

a sad case

long ago and far away
i had nothing much to say
my head was largely void of thought
and ambition i had not

i cared not for wealth or fame
or whether anyone knew my name
my brain was not consumed by fire
i had only one desire

and that was never to be tossed
with all the other damned and lost
into society’s swirling deep
and have to - earn my keep

o my fellows, can you say
who invented the working day?
who put chains upon our souls
and cast us in these rigid roles

i should have lived on grass and seeds
hidden in society’s weeds
slept in benches, or in a box
rather than endure the pox

of rising every day at six
to perform employment’s tricks
in a cage of glass and steel
lashed to mammon’s iron wheel

the wheel once started, how to stop?
turn, turn, until you drop
like a feather into the abyss
was there something that i missed?

Saturday, March 25, 2017


last night i played chess with my brother
he always played white

he could never understand
why he should not always play white

he had one oreo cookie left on the board
and i only had a chocolate chip cookie left

he asked if i conceded
and i did

he suggested another game
and i agreed, if i could play white

he got up angrily and left the room

outside, the red sox were playing the giants
and a plane flew low overhead

under a few thin clouds

i wondered why i had returned to san francisco
as it had changed so much from the days of ambrose bierce and jack london

Thursday, September 8, 2016

daniel boone

daniel boone was a mighty man
a mighty man was he
he carried a long long rifle
and slept beneath a tree

daniel was not as one man
but had the strength of ten
he marched all through the wilderness
and marched back out again

some say he never did the things
that he was said to do
but i believe he did them
because his heart was true

daniel boone killed indians
like you and me kill flies
who knows what scenes of hate and death
passed before his eyes

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

benjamin harrison

spencer perceval was prime minister of england
but nobody knew who he was

benjamin harrison was president of the united states
but nobody knew who he was

they were pious men who knew their bible
and took their responsibilities seriously

sometimes benjamin harrison would get up
and look out the window at the white house lawn

and think, i am president of the united states
but nobody knows who i am

sometimes i think i am just like benjamin harrison
and i am not even president of the united states

Monday, March 7, 2016

jerry the human and spot the dog, part 4

for previous episode, click here

to begin at the beginning, click here

as we previously mentioned, jerry was descended from many other humans.

how many, he couldn't say. determining exactly how many was difficult. few humans cared to investigate the subject, or found it interesting.

at first glance, the math was easy. each person had two parents, therefore four grandparents, eight great grandparents, sixteen great great grandparents, etc. so by this math every person is descended from about 1,500,000,000,000,000,000 persons after sixty generations.

this is obviously untrue as there have never been so many people.

in jerry's time he could have gone to a library and found books which would have told him that therefore every person alive in his day was descended from every person alive sixty generations (twenty centuries) ago. but obviously this can not be true either. they might be related to every person alive then, but they can't be descended from them all because many people live and die with no descendants.

and many others leave descendants but their "line" dies out when their descendants leave none. and the "line", once broken, is never picked up. and nobody can be descended from a person who has no descendants.

because it is possible. though unlikely, that one person could be descended from another after sixty generations but only inherit 1/1,500,000,000,000,000,000th of their "genes".

there must have been a lot of people at the time of john the baptist or nero who are the “ancestors” of an awful lot of people walking the earth today. or - maybe there are only a few of them.

and what about pockets of “primitive” people who hardly had any contact with the “outside world” until the 19th or 20th century?

take anybody alive today - might there have been only about ten or twenty people at the time of the pharaohs that they are descended from?

and here is something else - everybody has a string of male descendants - father’s father’s father’s etc - and female descendants - mother’s mother’s mother’s mother - going all the way back to before “homo sapiens”.

think about it! somewhere in the world (africa?) in the year 3,000,000 b c there was a sort of human who was your father’s father’s father…. and a sort of human female who was your mother’s mother’s mother… did they meet? did they mate? if there was just one little tribe or just a few tribes raiding and fighting each other, maybe they did…

jerry would get to thinking about these things and forget where he was.

“why are you sitting in the dark, jerry?” his grandmother asked him when she got home from work. she had a big brown bag of groceries in her arms.

“oh — uh — i guess i kind of dozed off.” jerry mumbled.

“your eyes were wide open,” his grandmother, whose name was pearl, said as she took her coat off. “you must have been thinking about something.”

jerry started to explain to pearl what he had been thinking about.

“why do you think about stuff like that?” she interrupted him after he went on for about minute and a half.

“it just interests me.”

“you shouldn’t be interested in stuff, it’s a waste of time. you should do stuff, that way you make can money and support yourself,” pearl told jerry, in a kindly voice.

pearl picked up the bag of groceries and headed for the kitchen. “come on, help me make dinner. i got some nice potatoes on sale, you can peel some.”

jerry got up and followed pearl into the kitchen.

“i hope you like potatoes because we are going to be eating these for at least a week,” said pearl.

“that’s all right, i am used to potatoes,” jerry told her.


meanwhile, back at the animal shelter, spot was alone with his thoughts, after a meager dinner of very dry dog food and a little water.

contrary to jerry’s theories, spot knew very well why he had been put in the shelter and had some very definite views on the subject.

spot knew other things, too. things of which jerry, and the rest of the human race, did not dare to dream.

to be continued