I've never liked my name,
so I tell you to call me Josie.
The O, an arc over the roses of my childhood
the garden in the front yard
where I fell asleep listening to Ravi Shankars' sitar.
Slipping, dead to the world, among the night blooming jasmine.
A beautiful thing.
the stone weight of your head, adrift in dream on my hip,
feels a comfort to my blues.
A beautiful thing.
Napoleon for his Josephine,
the breath that you leave heavy on my thigh.
A beautiful thing.
1769 Corsica is where he got his start
One of the greatest commanders in history
His manner of death a 200-year-old mystery
Napoleon played it close to the vest
With his armies he was always the best
But 'twas nothing he could do
When he met his Waterloo
Lived his last few years under house arrest
Napoleon drank the water and headed for the loo
He did nothing different than you or I could ever do
Be kind to your skin and protect your bone-a-parts
Remember that's where good hygiene starts!
8/8/2019 - Poetry form: Clerimerick Couplets (A hybrid form composed of a Clerihew, Limerick and 2 rhyming Couplets. The Clerihew has been described as the literate cousin of the Limerick. So I thought, hey, why not get the cousins together for this one! Then two rhyming couplets showed up to the party and voilà! - Waterloo Clerihew 23-Skidoo! - Copyright © Mark Toney | Year Posted 2019
The canons thunder,
the rifles rage,
and the horses
like swarms of bees
storm the plains
of feudal Europe.
Her princes tremble
Prussia's undoubtedly mine
from Bavaria to the Rhine.
Russia's dreary wintry plains
will be where my scepter reigns.
Italy is my inheritance
as Portugal dreads resistance.
Without the sword i'll woo Poland
whilst to her knees i'll bring England
and kingdoms of the British isles.
French civilization and styles
will dethrone Europe's old order
as our ideals expand further.
Napoleon's European conquest
I weigh 1/4 of a blue whales heart
I am as tall as Napolean Bonaparte
I am as old as Oprah's Book Club
When I do not like myself
I think of these things
And suddenly, I look very different.
"Stress is caused by being ‘here’ but wanting to be ‘there’"
that's how a German author defines stress.
I read this quote
and write it down
in that tab I open
secretly at work
to avoid being
seen by my boss.
that lives like a refugee,
like everything I like.
Buddha whispers to my ear,
-Attachment is the root of suffering-
with his funny accent
-The richest man is not he who has the most, but he who needs the least.-
I call into question
my arms race
That cold war that started years ago
and never ended.
Yahve sets a
bush on fire
on the park
and talks to me.
He talks about
the promised land.
The same land he once promised
to my grandparent,
to my parents.
And I then remember,
I am also a part of this exodus.
-the end justifies the means-
I repeat this to myself,
like a mantra,
trying to convince myself
as I see the parts of me
being left in the path.
The goal blends
into the horizon
like a mirage.
I see how other boys
They are younger,
and run faster,
And I once was
one of those boys,
ready to run for days.
My parents ensure
my path has less rocks
and that my wall
(that wall people who run long distances know)
was lower and softer.
I see the corpses in the path
of the persons who weren't even able to see
My life is a constant wanting
to reach those lands
while I hate the desert
under my feet.
Port Au Prince is also the color of the French Riviera
I remember Napoleon's failure
and how it felt to be banished from human touch
I can still hear the grandeur
I can still see the monument I made for myself
I miss Paris, I miss that kind of love
Port Au Prince is the color of *triomphe
When Napoleon walks into my house, he doesn’t shake my hand
Instead he nods, clears his throat, and says my other name, “Thien.”
“Chu,” I say. He sniffs the air like a K-9 from Denmark,
presses his lips into a line, like one found on a blank page,
like one found on a mirror, and like one found in McDonalds.
He smells the smoke from the Marlboro lights on my black-Tee shirt.
I reach into the pocket of my trousers, searching for cologne:
Tommy; ocean; breeze. It’s lost. I mutter, “son-of-a-bi—”
Chu stares, tries to punish me. I want to laugh, want to shrug.
“Anh-Thien,” says a young voice. I close my eyes. And see my cousin.
— The End —