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 Jan 2022
Nat Lipstadt
“Great is the art of beginning, but greater the art is of ending”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
                                                      ­  <?>

how we age is both simultaneously
conscious and unconscious,
uncontrolled and uncomfortable

we never fail to recognize the mirror image, yet,
always thinking out loud in our brain that’s not me!

some remember their successes; others, do not,
perhaps they cannot recall the few, or more likely
acknowledge them as triumphs, as the scale is a
canon always in flux by time grinding us fine

we readily admit, or do not deny, the lines upon our bodies
are highway markers of journeys, yet we know not
who built these signposts, how they came to be here,
but that they ours, unique and accumulated, undeniable

Longfellow’s observation above hits me
with the  fullness of a wet washcloth;
intemperate and stinging,
but not unpleasantly so.

each of our beginnings are artful;
full of promise and worthy tales;
we think this. is normative,
the way a young life is proscribed,
meant to be enjoyed.

of course, this is not necessarily so;
indeed, the exiting is a violent decay,
unrelenting and foisted upon us and
we try, to amend it, our transient departure,
so that we remove the artifice, keep only the art,
the skilled communication of what we valued,
the things that are progeny, living or material,
those clues to whom we are, to whom it may concern, 
we were

Dec. 25, 2021
 Jul 2021
Wk kortas
When that day of reckoning comes
(Hopefully, some light years distant,
As I like anyone else, cling stubbornly if not desperately
To this process of plodding aimlessly along)
Where the book of myself is closed, I have asked,
Though how I plan to enforce the wish remains an open question,
That I am not Cadillac-carted to some incongruous green space
Where some dark-clad and stiff-collared stranger
Bounces pebble-laden soil onto the top of my bedding for the ages.
Much better,  at least to my way of thinking,
That the remnants of my essentials
Are strewn upon some cold Adirondack lake,
Or perhaps if its current residents
Are sympathetic and not particularly litigious,
The backyard of my childhood home
(I have not fleshed out that particular portion of the equation,
As I, like most people, am much less emphatic about my do’s
Than I am concerning my don’ts and won’ts.)

On the odd occasion, I am visited by a curious dream
Concerning my departure from this particular plane;
There is a fire, though not some vast, heroic Viking pyre,
(Even my reveries have a certain reserve about them)
But something less prepossessing,
Like some small pile of leaves,
Such as my father burned when I was a young boy,
And a black-suited cleric stands before the flames,
His face only somewhat familiar, yet still comforting
(A distant uncle or favorite teacher, perhaps)
And he litters the embers with the residue of my corporeal self
With words absolving the folly of my acts of commission
(The stumbling footfalls of the blind; throw them on the fire)
The shortsightedness of my omissions,
(Boorishness of children and fools; throw them on the fire)
The sum of my shortcomings and misadventures
(Victims of our angels and gods; throw them on the fire)
And the trails of smoke drift aimlessly upward,
Toward birds who cackle and twitter unconsciously,
Oblivious to all the machinations below.
 Jul 2021
Thomas W Case
The birds started
singing at ten to four
this morning;
coaxing the dawn on
with their song.

The *** would be
great on the clouds
I saw yesterday.
They looked like
rows of fresh
Every position would be
a little miracle;
perfect depth and

The sweat stung
my eyes as I
smoked in the
sweltering July
I wish I could
live in the clouds...
No job
No taxes or tired back.
Just relaxing in
that puffy white
 Jul 2021
Terry O'Leary
The wrapes of Grath adorn the path that slammer klingks had tread
when turning spades in everglades to flosticate the dead.
Along the way the snorbels bay at freebled sprutelned
that boogeymen had once again uphove above the shed.

The buildings tall that housed the krawl are pictured carved in stone
and all that’s left is now bereft of wrapes that might atone
for scabs that feed our wrinkled breed, distraught and lying prone.
Yes, flonk replaces merpeled traces deep inside, alone.

There’s no retreat from incomplete, so durbies never dared,
but streaped instead beneath their bed with franjent fangs unbeared;
they knew the past could never last although the trumpets blared,
for doogies, stripped, were ill equipped, no longer bald or haired.

Like cavaliers with gougejent spears, well triggered for a tiff,
slank vankulures with silver spurs embussed for grimp and griff
(no question why, for “we can’t die”, the oft regleated riff);
with little fuss the blunder bus krunged glimpfly off the cliff
and fetid breet of grim defeat gave Grath its final whiff;
the catapult had one result, all life lay lazelled stiff.

The plastic waves that washed the graves, now homeland for the rutch,
though faring worse when quenching thirst with warples in the hutch
were nonetheless, as frunks confess, so pleasant to the touch
exturbing sinks that watered wynx and onetime life as such.

Like burning blotters slurping waters, skindles sipped their fill
from koozing cracks between the tracks inhumed beneath the hill,
then spawned the spores of Grathic wars that profit from the ****;
their victory tales, like crimson crails, reside in dung and dill.

Those scrilly clouds that cowed the crowds neath radiation snapes
left little less than watercress beneath their coffin’s drapes;
yes, those unborn cannot adorn the pallor of the prapes
so scrundlemun tinge bibberun, we ones who reap the wrapes.

Yes, now-abandoned hetzelspan were once in time embroiled
with merikained that firps extained until the weather roiled.
What more, perchance, can happenstance inflict upon the koiled
when pendlesnips are in eclipse and wrapes of Grath are soiled?
This [will be/has been] written in the future (3121 CE) by our evolutionary progeny (in the ruins left, after our apocalyptic demise) and [has been/will be] sent back to us as a warning, through a warped space-time wormhole.

But yeah, we won’t pay heed…

Note that ‘language’ [is/will be] different then… so it might sometimes be a little hard to understand...

(too much koolaid???)
 Jun 2021
Hey Dad,
It's been some time since we last spoke. I miss you, still. I'm writing to ask that you pass a message on to Mom for me. She never was one for sentimental stuff; but you know that, already.

Tell Mom that she is missed by all of her children; we miss her especially on this, her first Mother's Day away. I will miss not calling or seeing her. I missed sweating over what to get her this year. I miss her voice those times when I just needed to hear it; the first time that Noah had an ear infection, those times that I needed to know what was wrong with my roses. She always seemed to have the right answer no matter what. Just like you.

Tell Mom that I'm doing well. I've stopped drinking. I know she never liked that. Tell her that Noah is graduating from High School next month. You both were always so proud of him. He misses both of you very much. You should see him now, Dad. He's as tall as I am. As tall as you. He has grown into a good man; he is a lot like you in many ways. Noah sends his love to you both.

Well, I just wanted to say hello, and ask that you tell Mom that I love her. Tell her that I understand. It was time. She missed you. You were waiting up in the high pasture for quite awhile.  I'll let you go, now. I know that you two still have a lot of catching up to do.

Hugs to Mom.


r ~ 5/11/14
Happy Mother's Day, Mom.
 Jun 2021
Wk kortas
I have often wondered
(Though this one time out of respect for the deceased,
I suppressed the urge to ask the question)
Why in hell preachers never seem to own any old pairs of shoes;
Certainly, they must be cognizant
That the when the Lord brings rain
(Though never when, where, or in the proportion we would like,
His way being not our way and all that *******)
The mud is sure to follow, and yet I have never seen a preacher
Who didn’t approach an open grave in shiny new calfskin loafers.
To say that having a man of the cloth approach
The solemn duty of uniting a man with his Maker
Like he was tip-toeing through a mine field puts a burr up my ***
Is to make understatement ******* near an art form;
I have stipulated in my will that I’m to be buried
Smack-dab in the middle of my cow pasture
(The farm itself, sadly, a bit easier to reach
Once the town—over my strenuous objections, I may add—
Decided it was necessary to pave
My section of the Crow Mountain Road)
So when the time comes for the minister
At the Presbyterian church over in Delhi
To spirit me away from this vale of tears to the arms of Jesus,
Hopefully he’ll do so with good honest cowshit
Splattered on his suit trousers.

That is, apparently, what old Doc Cathey
Scribbled down on Henry’s death certificate,
Though I suspect he simply picked a page
Out of his medical dictionary
And wrote the first thing that looked plausible.
Given that the man was big as a house and soft as a newborn,
It’s **** near a miracle he lived as long as he did,
And he sure as hell didn’t do anything for his longevity
By taking on the cares and worries of every loser and fool
Like they were so many stray kittens.
For myself, I learned long ago where value lies:
You come up to my place,
I can show you an Ithaca Double Shotgun from the 20s
With the blue still on the barrels,
Worth **** near a thousand dollars now,
And Liberty Head ten-dollar coins
That you’d swear were freshly minted.
Now that, my friend, is the kind of thing
Which appreciates over the years,
And if I die alone and unmourned,
Well, that’s pretty much how I came in,
So I’m more or less ahead of the game.
What killed Henry? Well, I’m no M.D, praise God,
But I figure it was his failure to take into account
That saintliness doesn’t pay off
Until a body’s gone and become past tense.
Mr. Loomis and Mr. Soames appear courtesy of the John Gardner novel Nickel Mountain.
 Apr 2021
Of all the places
she sought to hide
She only found one
safe place inside
in dancing images
where the poetry
 Apr 2021
phil roberts
My words and my poems
Are no more than explanations
And embellishments
My means of expression
For my life is my "art"
It's what I am and what I write
It's why I need to write
To make sense of the things
I've seen and done
And there are times when
I think I've done far too much
Then, in deep contemplation
I realise I could have done more
And that kind of inner debate
And discussion with myself
Are a large part of my life
Which becomes my version
Of something like "art"

                                         By Phil Roberts
 Apr 2021
Francie Lynch
I've been shot,
Yet dodged the bullet.

Thanx anti-vaxers
For reducing my
Time in line.

Lest We Forget!
Got my Pfizer yesterday, about 25% quicker than anticipated thanks to the fools who refuse to get the dose.
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