Balzakian

Not cinched

cloistered

coffined

poems

but big

blubbery

Balzakian

bursting with life

Rubenesque

with rotundity

doorstoppers

of poems

life spilling out

of them

like clothes from a suitcase

clowns out

of a jalopy

Calm

I like to read calm sentences, she says.

No ugly exclamation marks that bully and harass.

No question marks that interrogate.

No dots or dashes.

Nothing jittery or jagged

Calm.

Calm sentences.

Placid as a billabong.

Soothing as slumber,

Pachelbel’s  canon.

That Little Guy in my Head

Every time I go to post a poem

About my partner or family, or another poet

That little guy inside my head says,

Hey You Can’t Say That! And when I ask,

Why not? He says. Are You Serious?

You Re3ally Don’t Know? But, of course, I do

But you can’t fictionalize everything.

You take away the bite of authenticity.

So I slam the door shut on that censorious little freak

but he shouts out anyway: DELETE! DELETE!

Uncle Bert

I remember Uncle Bert.

He had had a stroke.

His mouth was always open

Though he never spoke.





He sat on his armchair

Alongside Aunty Pat

Who did the speaking for him.

She was good at that.





He once looked a film star

A Gable or a Flynn.

He was a dashing rake,

Tall, handsome, thin.





But now he is all empty.

He follows Aunty Pat

Obedient as a dog

Or a Welcome mat.

When Topsy Met Turvy

Whenever you see the word ‘nooks’ you just know

that ‘ crannies’ is going to pop up somewhere:

they go together,

as the song says, like the horse & carriage,

welded together like conjoined twins;

once, they lived separate lives; like ‘topsy’ & ‘turvy’;

a rambunctious couple;

how they got together is anyone’s guess:

was it during a blind-date, or a casual hook-up in

some covert etymological corner

and their chemistry clicked?  

Whenever I lose

a coin or capsule, I’ m never sure whereto look first:

a nook or a cranny?

Once I lived in a unit where there were no nooks

and another where there were no crannies;

I couldn’t wait to get out of either place.





  • pic Pinterest by Julie Robin-Wagner

We All Have Our Wolves

Ever had a fear

so big

you lost the power

of your legs

reserves all gone

depleted

your yabbering heart

quite unseated

you’re miniscule

so small

the wolf

skyscraper tall

nothing to do

but await

till the fear

obliterates.

Could be your ex

a confined space

the wolf wears many

a different face

Remain steady

stare don’t start

just you, yourself

& yr red riding hood heart.





*pic from Pinterest by Kings-Wu

You Gotta Be Careful

You gotta be careful what you put up.

It’s like Fish ‘N’ Chips.

One bad batch and people remember.

That bad taste in the mouth.

You gotta serve it up fresh, hot, well salted,

people like salt and it has to have crunch

and zing.

It has to hit those taste buds.

Make the mouth water.

Run with melody.

A good poem is like a bag of fish ‘n’ chips.

Not too fussy.

Just the basics, a little poetry with herbs and spices

and that secret ingredient  people keep talking about.

Something you can savour.

Ponder over for a while.

You develop trust,

Yeh, that little guy behind the counter, he knows how to do it.

And you keep coming back.

That’s how you want it to be.

A good poem is like Fish ‘N’ Chips.

The Woods

The rash on my back

has dimmed:

angry red

to demure blush.

I wish I never

had thrush

in my left nostril —

in that cramped cave

hard for the air

to get through

but the meds kept

the wolf at bay,

subdued.

Almost out of the woods

like Red Riding Hood.

Like Pictures on a Wall

I like to read the crazed calligraphy of car tyres

on roads, the angry black swathes of rubber

on bitumen from burn-outs and donuts. What are we

to make of such marks, the road their canvas?

Do we elevate it to ‘outsider art’; Do we call them,

‘hoons’ or ‘street artists’? Do they love the smell

of burnt rubber in the morning as they furiously apply

the high octane brush of machismo? Do they,

I wonder, gloat over their works in the days & weeks

that follow, as if they were pictures hanging on a wall ?





  • pic courtesy of pixabay by Jan-Mollander