We all thought he would
Stay here forever, like
So many other lethargic
Sons and daughters of the slough
Who may never have learned what the mustard fields were for.
I escaped early, lucky I
Guess, but never quite let
Go of him, and another year
Gone by, like battered ships we return.
Those eyes are intense and
Hazel in the oncoming
Hair black as the ruins of Haystack Landing.
Once you’re told, you remember what the mustard fields were for.
“I’m different, I mean,” he says,
“Fuck, even at dinner with family. I
Freak out, get paranoid, like I’m
Fighting for my life in the Sonoma hills.”
He sighs, “I know you know,
When I come back from
Where I’m going, seeing you is
What I’ll want the most, but--”
I wonder if he knows what the mustard fields were for.
“I’ll probably be real different,
Probably need a lot of help.”
Passing elevated acres of mustard, we
Pause; he says, “Gotta stop for gas.”
This soldier stands in sharpened
Contrast to this rural, liberal
Community, these Victorian
Cathedrals of a quiet isolation.
They will never tell you what the mustard fields were for.
I wonder then if something about our
Air here makes us want to reach out,
Aspire for our names and badges
Across the expanse of war and peace.
Like the murky waters of the turning basin,
History hides a silent violence.
Hatching, we find ourselves inoculated against
Human strains of moral dystrophy.
I went into the world knowing well what the mustard fields were for.
They’re still here, still growing, those
Slender, musky stalks, golden heads
Sweetly pastoral in their floral bloom,
Soft biochemical carpets in a cultivated sprawl.
I know now, I know damn well what the mustard fields were for.
Beneath my bed I placed some bread
and on it spread some jam
added some cheese and mushy peas
salami eggs and ham
a blob of sauce mustard of course
and relish three days old
some chips and dips and cherry lips
and baked beans full of mold
there's water cress and what a mess
of earwax and a scab
my used band aid from second grade
and frogspawn from the lab
I topped it off with lager froth
and nose hairs from the sink
and if you thought the food was bad
don't ask what's in his drink.
The Hungry Secularist is a poem from my e-book of 79 pages, Don't Swallow The Toothpaste. You can purchase the book at whatever price you would like to pay by clicking the link or copy and paste that is provided at the bottom of the page!
I put on my boots
before realizing another holiday
snuck up on me.
Walked into the bedroom
and called two major grocery stores.
I looked at what fruit was
on the shelf.
There were a couple apples,
and one tomato.
Not enough to get me through this
Easter Sunday and work tomorrow.
I went online to a map search,
typed "grocery", and found a little market 3 blocks away.
As I approached
there was an old neon soda
sign broken in half,
but I was optimistic
I entered the market
and grabbed a basket
circling the store a couple of times
before asking the young man
if they had bananas and tangerines.
He asked what I was going to use
I said, "I'm sorry?"
"What are you going
to use them for?"
Yes - he said
I replied, "To eat."
He led me over to the cooler,
"You know what's good? Take a lime and cut it into wedges
and roll it in sugar."
I didn't have sugar at home due to just moving in,
and if I did,
the thought of eating a lime in
any manner makes my asshole pucker.
It's probably something he saw
on an MTV Spring Break episode.
He told me when the bananas
ripened they were gone.
I usually reserve one day a week
to eat anything. I grabbed a can of
mustard sardines, clam chowder soup,
then a couple of things that weren't as fattening.
I forgot to look for canned fruit.
I'm on my 3rd cup of coffee and
making a lot of runs to the bathroom.
The wooden floor squeaks in the
hallway as I try to find the tight spots to step,
so I don't wake a roommate.
For whatever reason
my sinuses are flared
and my throat sore.
We've had 5" of snow the last
and the wind chill on this
23rd of March is 26*.
is winding its way
to the Sweet 16.
I remember the fever
in Carolina this time of year.
Between and after games
we would sometimes meet up
to shoot hoops.
In Minnesota on days like this
I just work to dodge the yellow
spots from where the neighbors
walked their dogs.
March 23, 2008
All Rights Reserved
Paypal also accepts credit cards, and you do not need to be a Paypal member! I will email you the e-book in .Pdf form once payment is completed.
After a sleepless night
Of thunderstorms and shrieking winds;
Now this clear dawn, the empty roads,
This sleeping world:
The orange ball rises, shyly,
Turning the snow-white peaks red,
Lighting the green valley
That lies ripe with yellow mustard.
That such loveliness exists.
I am greedy.
I have this strange yearning
For an off-season mango,
And your presence;
The mango months
Are half a year away,
And you and I
Are forever split by the bounds
Of customs and propriety.
But this is a make believe world.
I find you by my side,
Laughing at my mango fondness;
You ask me, sleepy eyed,
If I too find such dawns lovely:
I answer, tongue-in cheek,
With a warm smile,
The world has cast its spell on me.
I’m caught in her net of loveliness.
Like a fish I gape, open-eyed,
In wonder, forever and ever:
The star-laden cosmos unfolds,
Infinite, endless, with no borders;
How do the planets move in sync?
Exact, perfect, never out of step!
I can barely keep my car in line.
Nothing I see is plain, or mundane.
Dawn shines on saffron-shaded peaks,
Evening sets on the purple rocks.
The sea rushes in and retreats,
Across the white sands, the dark shores
Resounding with deep loneliness;
Seasons change -- the blue waters flow
Past green fields, yellow with mustard,
Apple trees rich with white blossoms --
Till the winter winds shake them down.
Every day, I wake up, somehow,
And find silver strands in my hair,
New wrinkles in my ageing skin…
All things change, one by one, while Time
Playfully lingers, unchanged, timeless.
Wonder comes to me, on certain feet.
How beautiful the world, how diverse.
And here I am, a lost traveler,
Stranded under the swirling stars!
The following questions were set in a GED examination
These are genuine answers (from 16 year olds)............and they WILL breed.
Q. Name the four seasons
A. Salt, pepper, mustard and vinegar
Q. Explain one of the processes by which water can be made safe to drink
A. Flirtation makes water safe to drink because it removes large pollutants like grit, sand, dead sheep and canoeists
Q. How is dew formed
A. The sun shines down on the leaves and makes them perspire
Q. What causes the tides in the oceans
A. The tides are a fight between the earth and the moon. All water tends to flow towards the moon, because there is no water on the moon, and nature abhors a vacuum. I forget where the sun joins the fight
Q. What guarantees may a mortgage company insist on
A. If you are buying a house they will insist that you are well endowed
Q. In a democratic society, how important are elections
A. Very important. Sex can only happen when a male gets an election
Q. What are steroids
A. Things for keeping carpets still on the stairs (Shoot yourself now , there is little hope)
Q.. What happens to your body as you age
A. When you get old, so do your bowels and you get intercontinental
Q. What happens to a boy when he reaches puberty
A. He says goodbye to his boyhood and looks forward to his adultery (So true)
Q. Name a major disease associated with cigarettes
A. Premature death
Q. What is artificial insemination
A. When the farmer does it to the bull instead of the cow
Q. How can you delay milk turning sour
A. Keep it in the cow (Simple, but brilliant)
Q. How are the main 20 parts of the body categorised (e.g. The abdomen)
A. The body is consisted into 3 parts - the brainium, the borax and the abdominal cavity. The brainium contains the brain, the borax contains the heart and lungs and the abdominal cavity contains the five bowels: A, E, I,O,U.. (wtf!)
Q. What is the fibula?
A. A small lie
Q. What does 'varicose' mean?
Q. What is the most common form of birth control
A. Most people prevent contraception by wearing a condominium (That would work)
Q... Give the meaning of the term 'Caesarean section'
A. The caesarean section is a district in Rome
Q. What is a seizure?
A. A Roman Emperor. (Julius Seizure, I came, I saw, I had a fit)
Q. What is a terminal illness
A. When you are sick at the airport. (Irrefutable)
Q. Give an example of a fungus. What is a characteristic feature?
A. Mushrooms. They always grow in damp places and they look like umbrellas
Q. Use the word 'judicious' in a sentence to show you understand its meaning
A. Hands that judicious can be soft as your face. (OMG)
Q. What does the word 'benign' mean?
A. Benign is what you will be after you be eight (brilliant)
Q. What is a turbine?
A. Something an Arab or Shreik wears on his head
HEAVEN HELP US ALL...LOL!!!!
Take me back to the land of sausage and mustard eggs.
Thick, meaty, juicy hunks of meat. Cylindrical and delicious, I miss the sensation of snapping the end of one off into my mouth fresh off of a grill.
Lounging on the castle lawn. Speaking three different languages in one conversation. Drinking confusing juice and cuddling up next to bonfires and talking all night long.
Sleeping in a cardboard box that needed a little Viagra. Loving new people every day.
Singing. All day long. Getting the words wrong until the leaves rustled just the right way reminded us what were trying to say.
I miss the Mother Land. The chill mornings and colder afternoons. Frozen over duck ponds and introducing the natives to the glory of tacos.
Ich liebe dich Deutschland. Holen Sie mich Haupt Ihnen.
three sets of withered, wrinkly hands
flutter in the air,
three froofy perms
one salt and pepper
wobbles a little.
a green-foam party hat
with a thin, white elastic band
that runs under her wrinkled chin
it sits atop her fuzzy perm
"Ah! my cappuccino! you remembered i like it, didn't you?"
she chucks her great-granddaughter
under the chin,
"oohh! look at these gardening gloves! Cidi! look at these gloves! i like the green ones."
she hands them to her white-haired sister
aunt cidi told me
this year she is
oh, and the gloves were really
misses uncle harland
he was buried three or four years ago
in his uniform
i remember sitting next to him
at awkward family reunions
i never saw so much mustard
in my life
he could never hear me
when i tried to talk to him
but he smiled
the talk turns serious
over our black coffee
and chocolate cake
grandma turns grim
in her lime-green party hat
"did you end up killing that trumpet vine in your yard, Jeanie?"
aunt jeanie's head wobbles a bit
wrinkles her nose
"i TRIED to!"
schemes of murder
plotted by three chunky-earringed
who are a little late
for the 1940's
but never too late
for a handsome
says aunt jeanie
"but not THAT old!"
It was the weirdest thing, for a lack of a better term. Some would find it hilarious, I found it confusing. But she used to bring me flowers whenever we got into a fight. At my home, work, the barbershop. You name it.
-“Ottis your girl is here...and she bought you flowers!”
I didn’t know if I liked it, or if I should be giggling like a teenage girl whenever she showed up with fresh-cut daisies or a bouquet of roses at my doorstep. I would hang up the phone on her on some serious mental rage and I would get flowers the next day- “I am sorry baby” she would say, -“I love you!” -Was I THAT sensitive? Did I brought out the mom in her? Have our roles been reversed? Doesn’t she know that all men are just content and happy with the two B's? (Beer and Blowjobs) or has the great battle for equality between men and women finally come to an end in the form of a dewy-eyed, raven-haired woman that found it romantic to bring her man flowers? It’s widely known that the quickest way to a man’s heart is through his penis, then his stomach. So, WHAT IN THE HELL IS WRONG WITH THIS WOMAN? I would say to myself while gushing in pretend shock and saying to her “Aww, you shouldn’t have, they’re beautiful!”
She quickly became known among my friends as the Flower Girl. Her answer to all our problems where with flowers. She stands me up: flowers. She forgets to return my calls: flowers. She didn’t like my cooking: flowers. She disappears for a few days: flowers and more flowers. She used to carry my fragile woman-heart in her purse pocket. I unwillingly found myself wearing the skirt in the relationship before I knew it and it had to stop. I had to put my manly pants on, one leg at a time and stop letting them sag to her bidding. But they did smell nice though, and they were pretty, especially those yellowish-orange tulips she bought me that one time with that giant teddy bear with a giant heart-shaped card that read “Ottis” on it. That was nice.
-“Kara, listen to me, I don’t want anymore flowers, I’ve had it, they are nice and all, but I am the one that’s supposed to give you flowers!” -I said firmly and secure in the manliest tone I could mustard. -“But you never give me any” -she retorted with the sweetest, most adoring kind of voice that would make the softest of Care Bears look like thug-out gangsters. Needless to say I felt like a monster, like Charles Manson’s long lost child. I surrendered to her charm and became Silly Putty in her hands once more. But at least the flowers stopped after that day, so did the calls, the dates, the sex, her unparalleled lunacy, until we were nothing more than a memory in a pantheon of many. Last I heard, she went back to Switzerland, suffocating, bombarding and smothering the new poor schmuck she’s dating with, you guessed it, flowers.
Atlantic City, 2007.
Last Saturday, I was stuck at home,
Quite by myself, and all alone.
The tv was out, no telephone,
And I'd just finished off
An ice cream cone,
When my stomach lurched and made a scowl,
It ached, it quaked, then gave a growl.
It let me know, that though times were tough,
That ice cream cone was not enough.
It needed sustenance to calm it down,
Something crunchy, tasty,
And caramel brown.
So, Genius that I know I am,
I caught a Frittle Frog,
Out in the back yard near the tree
And underneath a log.
It chribboted and twittled
And protested quite a bit.
So I figured it would taste quite grand
With some Mustard Sauce on it.
I took it into the kitchen,
And cut two beefy slabs of Rye.
Added half of half a lichen
From a lima bean pot pie.
I chopped up some ham and bacon,
And found a little slice of cheese,
A big old soggy Oreo,
And some crunchy black-eyed peas.
I added seven carrot tops,
That had seen a little mold,
And a big slice of zucchini,
That I so ever gently rolled.
I toasted the Rye quite skillfully,
And spread the mustard sauce on thick.
Then, to make sure it was nutritious,
I added a licorice stick.
I mopped up all the grease and grime,
Stacked the fixings on the bread,
And went to add my Frittle Frog,
When he only shook his head.
And looked up with disapproving eyes
As big as seven pizza pies.
So I changed my mind and decided
On grilled cheese sandwiches instead.
Copyright © 2012 Richard D. Remler