The Perfect Bag

The perfect bag is just the right size
For the things you need
Should the need arise.
Not too big or not too small
And whole lot lighter than a cannonball.

I always start out with things deemed essential
But I quickly digress to the random tangential:
Lipstick, hairbrush, keys and glasses
I.D., checkbook, old boarding passes,
Cell phone and charger and candy molasses.
And one more morass would make two morasses!

I should stop there, but just to be fair
I’d rather be safe than sorry.
On the side of caution I try to err.
Just in case of a sudden safari.

Now please don’t think that I’m slightly dotty
But I could get beamed up by way of Scotty
And wind up on some weird planet,
Doing battle with an evil pomegranate.
Entangled in vines, I’ll fight for my life
And I’ll cut myself free with my plastic knife
That I didn’t throw away but stowed in my purse.
I’ll be glad that I cleverly prepared for the worst.

Because getting wet can be a pain,
I have a mini poncho for the rain,
A tiny mirror and small pair of scissors
Just in case I’ve got to cut my hair
In the middle of a couple of blizzards.

And just remember,
You never know,
You could get stuck in traffic.
That’s not too bad,
but you could get sad
If you don’t have a
National Geographic.

And that’s why I don’t go anywhere
Without my Jews harp and harmonica.
When faced with something dismaying
I breathe deeply and just practice playing
Songs from Weird Al, Christmas and Hanukkah.

Little packets of salt and pepper
Make random snacks taste better.
Sometimes there’s Mustard and Texas Pete
And duck sauce and sugar for something sweet.

Ketchup and soy sauce
Band Aids and dental floss
Rubber bands and paper clips
A notebook and a sewing kit.

Pens without caps
For my writing pleasure
Outdated coupons
And a tiny tape measure
And wads of tissues
In case I’ve got “issues.”

Plastic bags for picking up trash
And a few dollar bills to share
And loose expired aspirins
Sporting sandy fuzz and hair.

For civilized dining on the run
I have nice plastic cutlery.
It sure beats eating things with your hands
That are slippery, wet and rubbery.

I confess that my bag is a random mess
But it’s also a grab bag of happiness.
A trashy treasure trove to be mined
I’m always surprised at the stuff that I find.

After all is said and done
I think it’s fair to say
It’s almost always the little things
That quite surprisingly save the day.

Photo Credit: http://www.funnyandhappy.com

 

 

 

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The Status is Never Quo For Long

Oh, no, don’t tell me I’ve lost my lease
Because somebody else is claiming this piece
Of Heaven I’ve rented for such a long time
That I started thinking was actually mine.
I cleaned and upgraded and kept my shop nice
And my presence here lends sweetness and spice.
I’m right where I’ve always wanted to be
I love my community and they love me.
But because I held the lease forever,
My rent stayed low which helped my endeavor
And allowed me to pay a near-living wage
And if my uniqueness is any gauge
You know no one can compete with me
Except for online shopping which we increasingly see
Where you can get things fast and almost free
Order it instantly right from your phone
With same day delivery shipped free by drone.
Because bricks and mortar are going the way
Of high button shoes from back in the day
Which we don’t sell but if you look on EBay
They cost ten bucks new, all the way from Indonesia
Which is why I’m now gulping Milk of Magnesia
Which I buy in bulk from a big box store
Cause I’ll go broke if I buy it from the store next door.
To see our steady flow of friends, you’d think we were thriving
They’re cool and hip and give us props, but we’re barely just surviving.
Between a rock and a hard place I feel like I’m glued
Where five dollar lattes and cheap fast food
Are changing the landscape of my sweet home town
Where the charm of yesteryear is getting torn down
To make way for high rises with a parking garage
And upscale dining to attract the incoming barrage
Of well-heeled people who hear that this town
Is on its way up from having been down.
This is called progress, which I’ll have to accept
But when we are happy it feels good to expect
That the status quo will stay the same
But it never does because we can’t stake a claim
On the outcome of what tomorrow might bring.
That’s just as true for the Joker as it is for the King.

Photo Credit: http://www.inhabitat.com (Story about Edith Macefield, the 84-year old who refused a million dollars and forced a shopping mall to build around her house)

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The Good Neighbor Award

My neighbors’ dog continued to bark
Until I thought that I’d go stark
Raving mad,
Which if you know me,
You’d certainly know
That I certainly don’t have too far to go
Stark raving mad.

Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf
Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf

Their place looked empty and no one was home
And I’m sitting here trying to write this poem
And nothing rhymes or makes any sense
And if you know me
You’d know that the sense I might actually make
Might actually be an actual mistake,
But the only rhyme I can possible make is:

Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf
Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf

My normally normal blood pressure, I think
Was starting to rise and although I don’t drink,
I found myself quickly
Approaching the brink
Of considering an option
Like a high-octane concoction,
Since the barking has changed the equation
This is officially a special occasion.
But if you know me
You’d certainly think
That certainly I
Must certainly drink
A lot.
But I don’t.

Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf
Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf

But maybe…

Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf
Arf-arf, arf-arf, arf-arf

This might be a good day to start!

And then
Is when
I wrote
The note:

Your dog’s barking like crazy
And it’s driving me nuts
And now I’m worried that you
Might think I’m a putz.

But I’m sure you’ll forgive me
This point I’ll not belabor
And mention instead that it must be said
That you are the very best neighbor.

Finally I pushed the send button
And she responded immediately
Gracious and kind and very concerned
Just as sweet as I know her to be.

The barking did cease.
No palms were greased.
No one called the police.
And my talent increased
(OK—that was stretch,
So nobody kvetch!)
But if you know me
You know I’m so happy to be
Right here at home
Writing this poem
In such heavenly
Heavenly peace.

Illustration Credit: http://www.quickmeme.com, “Driving Dog: Let Me Put it in Bark”

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Tomorrow Today Will Be Yesterday

 

What would I do
With all the time
That I waste every day
Surfing on line?

Maybe I’d see
All that dust I ignore
That settles on tables,
The lamps and the floor.

Maybe I’d notice
The refrigerator is crammed
With mashed potatoes gone moldy
And blue furry jam.

Maybe I’d finally get a handle
On closet control
And rescue the closet from
Its sucking black hole.

Maybe I’d hear
The birds chirp and squawk,
Shut down my computer
And go for a walk.

Maybe I’d wash down
The front porch chairs
And make the porch look like
Its caretaker cares.

Maybe I’d stir from my stupor
Before my chin hits my chest,
Get up and actually go to bed,
Stretch out and get some rest.

Maybe I’d cook something
Nice for ex-friends
And we’ll laugh, hug and celebrate
And finally make amends.

Maybe I’d even realize
That right now can sure seem long
But tomorrow today will be yesterday
So I’d best move myself along.

And maybe I’d write
A poem every day
Without fearing I’ll run
Out of good things to say.

And maybe I’d actually
Post it on line
Where you’ll read it and wonder
If you’re wasting your time.

Illustration Credit: “Wasting Time,” http://www.mydailymusing.com

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I’m Already Against the Next War

Nobody wants the immigrants
That our bombs create
We only know that when we’re scared
Our first response is hate.

We attack a sovereign nation
Who’s killing people wrong
So we drop our bombs to kill some more
Just to show them how it’s done.

But bombs can make things better
For our warring sides here at home.
Now Repubs and Dems can get together
And plan a proxy war by drone.

Eating steak tartare at Mar-a-Lago
While wreaking havoc with no shame.
Making deals with others’ lives is fun
When your skin’s not in the game.

Humanitarians and Barbarians…
Who is who and who are we?
Both vying to claim the cold comfort
Of a Pyrrhic victory.

Killing for a “moral” cause
Keeps our hands and souls pristine.
But in the end, dead is dead
And our noble charge obscene.

Illustration Credit: “Perpetual War,” by Anthony Freda

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Le Pain Quotidien: Getting a Rise out of a Crummy Poem

 

Give us this day our daily bread
And let’s hope that it’s really quotidian.
Just in case you should happen to fall on your head
And you happen to cross the meridian
That separates carbs from things that are not,
Then I’d suggest something Euclidian.

But what’s geometry to do with bread?
Only to take measure of all that is said
And to find the angle that’s least obtuse
Just to find any facts that could be of use.

Bread doesn’t smell bad
Nor bleed nor cry
And it won’t make you fat
If you don’t eat it fried.

Cold or hot,
Toasted or stale,
It’s the solid form
Of beer and ale.

So I don’t understand
Why bread you’ll eschew,
And curse those poor carbs
While swilling a brew.

But everything is relative
Or at least that’s my perspective
And as you can tell, I’m a zealot of
Making twaddle more connective.

But at the end of the day,
It’s safe to say
That a day without bread
Is a day that I dread.

Photo Credit: smileyland.com

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The God of the Wind

The God of the Wind has spent a sleepless, storm-tossed night,
Hard at work, sinking a ship or two, here and there.
Today he is as busy as a one-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.
Not knowing where to unleash his unfocused rage,
He writhes and thrashes in spastic gyrations,
Grabbing at frantic starlings that pepper the steel-grey sky.
A tormented soul, he rattles our windows,
And shakes our walls to their very foundations.
He makes airborne those things not meant to fly.
A spoiled, angry child, hell-bent on a binge of destruction,
He rakes his giant fingers through the tree tops,
Delighting in every limb he snaps
And every tree he rips out by the roots.
He must have coughed up a lung or two
Knocking down every garbage can in town.
He blows up shirts,
Exposing hairy belly buttons and poochy love handles.
He blows up skirts,
Revealing things we’d rather keep under wraps.
He blows hats off heads,
And grit and sand into babies’ eyes.
He plasters big sheets of newspaper against chain link fences and
He snags plastic bags on trees.
All of out spite, you know?
Even the nagging crows get their comeuppance
As he dives between their little strutting black birdy legs
And puffs up their feathers in precisely the wrong way
Just to wound their false bully pride.
“There, take that,” he blusters.
A frenetic peripatetic
Bringing brass knuckles to a slugfest.
Everyone’s invited.

Illustration Credit: terraoko.com, “Stribog, God of the Wind”

 

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