Sunday, May 31, 2015

here i am ...

here i am ...

here i am
standing in the doorway
and watching the sun drift
beneath the broken dishes
of white clouds
splattered and
in sharp pieces
like the heart
you left behind

here i am
caught between leaving
and staying
helplessly entangled
in the flowering bougainvillea
creeping over
this archway where
the strangling vines of fear
paralyse the moment
in the simple thought
that you may return
and i will no longer
be here

here i am
uncertain and alone
almost seeing you
dressed in the tattered remnants
of passionate nights
your hollow spectre
drifting through the
empty rooms of
a house so haunted
with the ghosts of
shrieking confusion
that still
i dare not move

so here i am
waiting and wondering
why hopelessness has so suddenly
trapped me here
in the passageway to hope
with only a single prayer
on my lips
that you will drive by
out of the darkest shadows
and find enough
love left in your heart
to take your final
killing shot


Saturday, May 30, 2015

Cleaning Day

Cleaning Day

It's cleaning day.

Probably just make my bed.

OK, I'll sweep too, and maybe run the dishwasher.

But I'm not hauling out my wacky old vacuum cleaner. Using it is like battling a beast with tentacles from the darkest parts of hell. It has a mind of its own and likes to twist here and there, destroying just about everything in its path and sucking up all kinds of things that are supposed to stay where they lay.

I can hear it humming, even as I write this, because it wants out of the closet.

It must be hungry.


Friday, May 29, 2015

the house across the street ...

the house across the street ...

across the street
the giant elm trees
yawn in shady patterns
over the green-gone-brown grass
that has begun to creep
like a labyrinth of snakes
over the walkway
that winds from the street
to the broken front door
where yellowing bits
of newspaper crumple
into muddled piles
and the mailbox
overflows with
final notices
and some will tell you
she lives there still
but i know better

through all these years
she would emerge
sometime after dark
and walk the thiry-three steps
across the street
and into my life
her small hands
carrying sweet offerings
of succulent delights
that she would drop
on the kitchen table
before undressing
and leading me
to my room
to show me the way
to recovery

in the mornings
she would be gone
and never once
did i doubt
that she would return
the very next evening
until she stopped returning
and i guess
she must have thought
that i could carry on
without her
and i guess
the moment when
she believed i was finally whole
she lost herself
in all the pain
she took from me
back the thirty-three steps
to the house
across the street


Thursday, May 28, 2015

A Sharp Dressed Kennedy

A Sharp Dressed Kennedy

So, today, I'm dressing up for you.

Usually, I write in boxers and in an ages-old black t-shirt with Triumph Motorcycles Co. screened on the front of it. The left sleeve is a little torn from a roughhousing I took at the hands of some woman in Starbucks, but that's another story for another time.

I won't tell you that some days I sit here pounding this keyboard in the nude. OK, I will tell you, but don't get too excited. It's not a pretty sight.

Today is different. I'm all dressed up. Slick khakis, sharp shirt, and even socks and underwear. Oh, and real shoes ... not my red crocs ...

What's the occasion, you ask?

Oh, that would be telling, now wouldn't it?


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

So? Did ya?

So? Did ya?

So? Did ya?

Did you inhale that evil, wicked, mean and nasty marijuhyena?

None of my business, of course, and to be honest, I really couldn't care less if you did or if you didn't.

No, my beef is with the whole drug underworld that controls the streets of our cities and transforms the somewhat naive pot-smoking young people into heavy drug users.

If I had one target in the war on drugs, it would be the makers and distributors of crack cocaine and crystal meth, undeniably one of the worst drugs imaginable.

For the life of me, I can't understand why these drugs are allowed to flourish. I simply don't believe that the situation is uncontrollable or that law enforcement is helpless to stop the proliferation of these drugs.

Of course, if the police did their job, I guess they wouldn't have a job to do, and many of our men and women in blue would be out of work.

Somehow, it seems worth the sacrifice of all those jobs.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Same Old, Same Old ...

Same Old, Same Old ...

Most people have a morning routine in their lives.

I mean, they wake up and go through similar motions and little rituals that prepare them for the day. Some put on the kettle for tea, some have the coffee maker set and ready to go, and some prefer just to hit the shower or bath while screaming at the kids to get up for school.

I don't have a routine.

I mean, I do get out of bed, eventually, after some thought about my immediate life and life in general, but after I step out of bed, well, anything is possible. Coffee? Maybe .... Tea? Maybe ... Maybe just a glass of orange juice or filtered water. Maybe a quick shower, or maybe two hours of writing before I even consider a shower. Maybe read my email, or maybe not. Maybe this, maybe that. Everything is a maybe.

Chaos. I live in chaos.

I need a routine. I think that a good, regular routine keeps one sane.

Maybe, it's too late.


Monday, May 25, 2015

the happy poem

the happy poem

at the breakfast table
i watch your thin pallid face
outlined with bulbous
pipeline curlers
throughout your hair
and notice how your
longest fingernail
creeps up your left nostril
when sometime between the pop
of the toaster
and the ping
of the microwave
you ask me for a happy poem
a poem that will cheer your spirits
if not make you laugh
and i am so completely caught off-guard
while gulping the last grainy remains
of my coffee
that all i can manage to say is
how wonderful life would be
if only the world had ended


Sunday, May 24, 2015



I can't say that I have ever hated anyone.

Hate is such a strong emotion. It can consume your every waking minute, and it requires far too much energy and will for me to bother with it.

I do know others who hate, and that seems to be all they can talk about — how much the object of that hatred is just this or that — always something negative, with no redeeming qualities whatsoever.

Sometimes, I think hate is mixed in with feelings of love.

To hate means that you must have some sort of connection with the other person, possibly even a positive relationship that went sour, for whatever reason.

Love grows cold, friendships lose vitality, family ties unravel, and the result is a confusion of feelings that leave you drifting from emotion to emotion. It's all sort of like a smoothie of anger and affection whipped up in a blender and poured out in a tall glass. But anger and affection never mix well, and there are always these chunks of spite and angst floating around the bottom of the glass. It's a tough swallow.

Now, this is not to say that I have loved everyone in my life. Some people have troubled me greatly, usually the liars and frauds that drift around like ragweed pollen in the wind. Surprisingly enough, however, I have never made that leap to hate. Usually, I stop short of falling into the pit of hatred. Those people earn my disregard, and that's the end of it. I don't necessarily wish them well, but neither do I wish them harm.

They simply cease to exist in my universe.


Saturday, May 23, 2015

stories ...

stories ...

she tells me stories
that she has read in the newspapers
stories of heroic men and women
who in some unselfish moment
proved to be greater
than the best of humanity
and this awkward paradox
sometimes confuses me
sometimes makes me whole
and later
when she has wrapped her arms
around my body
i tell her stories
that i have only imagined
stories of lovers
who remain true to one another
and i am always dismayed
when this awkward paradox
simply makes her laugh


Friday, May 22, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Seven

Just Sayin' Part Seven

You don't have to be sexy to have sex, and you don't have to have sex to be sexy.


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Six

Just Sayin' Part Six

Some people worry about what kind of world we are leaving our children. I worry about what kind of children we are leaving our world.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Five

Just Sayin' Part Five

I've never had a "one night stand." I was usually lying down.


Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Four

Just Sayin' Part Four

I sleep naked, because I believe one should always dress for success.


Monday, May 18, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Three

Just Sayin' Part Three

Some people say that I'm a diamond in the rough.

I'm really much more like Silly Putty.


Sunday, May 17, 2015

Just Sayin' Part Two

Just Sayin' Part Two

Since the age of 18, I have shrunk in height (from 5'11") by almost two inches, and I have added at least as many inches to my waistline.

Fortunately, two things about me have not changed in size.

One of those things is my shoe size.


Saturday, May 16, 2015

Just Sayin' Part One

Just Sayin' Part One

I have a dozen pair of white underwear.

Each is immaculately white.

Of course, I have never worn any of them.


Friday, May 15, 2015

Road Rage In Reverse

Road Rage In Reverse

The other day, I was out just driving around.

Ever do that?

You know, your place is a mess, the dishes haven't been done for two days or more, your bed looks like a troop of monkeys have been doing flips, dips, and all sorts of unspeakable things in it, and most of your wardrobe is in piles here, there and everywhere. Sure, you should take better care of of your life, maybe at least pick up a little, but instead you simply head out and spend the day driving around, driving around.

After all, there's something very therapeutic about just getting out of your place. Too often, "inside" is far to static, far too unchanging. A mess is a mess no matter how you choose to see it.

"Outside" is ever-changing. The streets, the trees, the weather, the kids playing, the folks by the bus shelter ... always different somehow, and that kind of constant transformation changes how you see the world, if only in small ways. Sometimes, external perception trumps that recurring introspective view of your life. It's just good to get out of your head once in a while.

So there I was, driving around and driving around. I drove past the mall, down an unfamiliar street, skipped by the Dairy Queen, and onto a rather busy throughway.

And that's when the most peculiar thing happened.

I was stopped at a red light, when the driver in the car next to me started honking and honking his horn. I looked over with my best WTF? look, and there was some old, bearded, long-haired guy with a look of lunacy in his eyes making motions for me to roll down my passenger side window.

For a brief few seconds, I considered the situation. I mean, I didn't remember cutting this particular car off in one of my patented, "get-outta-my-way" lane changes. I couldn't, for the life of me, remember knowing this idiot with the horn from any of my life experiences. And the way things are these days, I couldn't be sure that he was trying to get me to roll down my window so that he could take a shot at me, literally or metaphorically.

Nevertheless, my curiosity was aroused, so I did indeed roll down the side window and braced myself for the worst.

When the window was almost completely down, he cracked a huge smile of half-rotten teeth and shouted at me.

"Jesus loves you, brother," he bellowed, "Jesus loves you. Bless you, brother."

My expression must have slipped into something like that confused emoticon with its tongue hanging out. I had no idea how to respond.

Now, I can't say that I'm a religious guy, despite all my Catholic holy-roller upbringing. In a pinch, however, I'll take a free blessing whenever and wherever I can get it. After all, I figure what the heck? A blessing here and there, and before you know it, you have a pocket full of them. Sort of like Air Miles ... they add up, and someday you might actually use them.

I did want to acknowledge this guy, you know, say something back. But how does one reply? Do you say, "Thanks, buddy!"? Do you make the sign of the cross from forehead to chest and shoulder to shoulder? Do you flash him a peace sign with your two fingers raised to the heavens? Do you give him the thumbs up sign, like it was a post on your Facebook wall? Just what do you do?

I followed my first instinct, made a fist, and gave him the black power salute. That might not have been a great idea. You see, I'm not black, not African-American nor African-Canadian, and I suspect the guy completely misinterpreted my intention. He must have thought that I was shaking my fist at him, and his blessing suddenly turned into a "Fuck you, buddy!" with the typical one-finger salute most commonly associated with that expression.

Quite honestly, I was suddenly overcome with a sense of relief. Now, this is what one really expects in the middle of a busy traffic situation. This was something I could deal with much more easily.

I laughed as I returned his salute, with a few hand pumps to emphasise the point, and when the light turned green, I felt a sudden calm wash over me like a refreshing splash of holy water from a baptismal fount.

The world had righted itself into the unseemingly backdrop that we have all come to know and, if not love, at least respect. I was, once again, at peace with the cosmos that I've come to understand, and content with the knowledge that everything in life is so transient, that life is sort of like driving around and driving around, until that final red light stops you forever. When that fateful day arrives, I guess you can only hope that there's some guy in a car next to you, some wacky zealot, shouting "Jesus loves you."


Thursday, May 14, 2015



I may need drugs.

Every night, for several years now, I've been waking up between 2:00 and 3:00 am.

I just don't wake up and roll over and go back to sleep. I wake up, and I am seriously awake and ready to start my day.

Some nights, I even brush my teeth and go have coffee, like there's some place where I have to be in the next hour or so.

One night, I even went to the all-night supermarket for milk. Well, I needed milk, so I figured, why not?

I don't know how long you can go on just four or five hours sleep a night, but I think I'm working on the record.

I suppose you may be thinking that something terrible is troubling me, and whatever I'm worrying about is keeping me up. Not so. Not a worry in my soul.

I just wake up. Weird, I know.

Good grief ... maybe I need to see a shrink about all this, and get some of those little blue pills ... and I don't mean Viagra ... that part of my world works just fine, thank you very much ...

Hmmm ... maybe that's the problem ...


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One Hell Of A Thing

One Hell Of A Thing

I wonder what it takes to find your way into Hell.

I mean, I suspect axe murderers, paedophiles, and divorce lawyers get a one-way ticket to the fiery depths of Satan's lair, but who else is sent packing to the Boiling Hot Springs Resort For Sinners.

The guidelines might be the Ten Commandments, but those have become rather hazy over the years. The eighth commandment is: "Thou shalt not steal." Does that mean that every little shoplifter is going straight to hell? Man, the place would be standing room only.

And what about the seventh commandment: "Thou shalt not commit adultery." Does sex-on-the-side mean you're destined to spin on some eternal wheel of fire?

To top off number seven, we have number ten: "Thou shall not covet your neighbor's wife." Never mind the sex. Just thinking about Florence DeGrandknockers in a sexual way while flipping wieners at the block barbecue is going to spin you through the turnstile of debauchery and into the molten pit.

Are there shades of transgression? Or are the lines absolute?

You see, I'm thinking there are things you probably shouldn't do, but you do them anyway, because, well, you're only human. If Florence DeGrandknockers walks by in a tube top and hot pants, and your brain short-circuits for a couple of seconds and starts to covet, is that completely your fault?

And what about forgiveness? Are we not allowed to make mistakes and be forgiven for them? Or does our sinful record follow us all the way through life, past death, and pop up at the ivory gates to Heaven, when St Pete swipes our Out-Of-Time card into his computer and says, "You're in the wrong place, my friend, you'd better leave."

Without some kind of forgiveness, I suspect I'm toast, as the saying goes ... and I don't mean toasted to just a lovely golden brown. I'll be burnt to a fine charcoal black and on the expressway to Hell.

The best I could hope for is that Florence DeGrandknockers shows up too ...


Tuesday, May 12, 2015



I have no tattoos on my body. I am far too changeable to see myself marked in such a permanent way. I do, however, like tattoos of all kinds.

For some people, getting inked must be a bit of an obsession, because some folks have tattoos over almost their entire bodies. That's cool too, unless they look like a potpourri of different designs. I guess I think there should be some sort of feng shui behind the process of decorating one's body, some sort of order and overall design to the canvas.

Tattoos seem to be a way of visual self-expression. There must be a reason someone wants a barbed wire fence around his or her bicep or a bleeding heart on his or her butt.

One of the more popular places for a "tat" has been at the base of the back, just above the bum crack. Now generally known as a "tramp stamp," such tattoos have been connected to some sort of indication of one's sexual promiscuity. I'm not so sure that need be true, unless, of course, one has an arrow pointing downwards, sort of like a street sign. Still, if one's partner needs a map along the road to bliss, then maybe it's time to find a lover with a better sense of erection direction.


Monday, May 11, 2015

A Chance To Dance

A Chance To Dance

I want to dance with you ...

so bring your red shoes ...

and wear that special frock you like, the one that takes off 20 lb ...

oh, and bring some sandwiches ...

huh? ...

I don't care what kind ...

maybe ham and cheese ...

and bring a beer ...

no, not for me ...

for the guy who will be hitting on you all night ...

it will keep his hots for you percolating ...

while I dance you off to ecstasy ...


Sunday, May 10, 2015

Doing Your Best

Doing Your Best

As the days leap by and the years turn into smudges of memory, I often wonder how people look back on their lives.

Some folks turn downright cranky. They seem to feel that life has cheated them of something — maybe wealth, maybe love, maybe happiness in one form or another. As they get older, some kind of inner bitterness starts to bubble up to the surface, and before long, they are blaming everyone and everything around them for their infirmities or even their imminent departure from this world. I have no time for such people. They can rage and rage all they want, but not in my circle of existence.

Other people ignore what their lives have been, opting instead to ignore the past and live only "in the moment." I admire this little credo, but really this approach is also not for me.

I love thinking back on the good times and, yes, even some of the bad times as well. And why not? I was the author of my own experience, and if I got a chapter or two or three wrong, well that just makes me human. I'm not perfect, never claimed to be at all.

I've always thought that, through the years, I did the best I could. Maybe my best was never good enough for some people whom I met along the way, but it was still my very best.

And doing your best today creates, I think, a better tomorrow.


Saturday, May 09, 2015



It's funny how people drop in and out of your life. I guess each one changes you for good or bad.

It struck me this morning that I still have so many more people to meet. Some will just be passing pauses, but others will have a dramatic impact on me, hopefully in the greatest ways ... hopefully before the Alzheimer's kicks in ...


Friday, May 08, 2015

Me & Me

Me & Me

This morning, right after I got out of the shower, I met me.

I know, I know, that sounds weird, but it's true.

I met me somewhere between drying my hair and brushing my teeth.

Me was right there in the bathroom mirror, right there staring somewhat disdainfully back at me.

For fear that you think I've lost my mind, I won't say that me spoke to me, but in a strange kind of way, me did.

"You've aged," me observed, "what happened to your boyish good looks?"

I looked back at me with a kind of snarl, like the kind you give someone who really pisses you off, and you can't come up with a suitably sarcastic retort.

After a moment or two, I simply thought to myself, "Well, time changes everything ... you couldn't expect me not to change with the passing of time, could you?"

The me in the mirror didn't quite seem content with that thought. In fact, me went on to offer, "Got a bit pudgy somewhere along the way, didn't you?"

Now, I kind of took this as a low blow. I mean it's one thing to make a note of someone's age, but it's another thing to be downright rude.

The standard response in such a situation escaped me. So I just stared back at the mirror with my best "kiss-my-ass" expression rippling over my face. Needless to say, me gave me the same look back.

As I went to get dressed, I wondered if I should shave, but for some reason, I didn't trust the me in the mirror with a razor. I had visions of me nicking some important artery, and though it seems I have no compunctions about making a bloody mess of other people's lives, I stop short of making a bloody mess of my own.

Self-perception — sometimes it's like a junkyard dog looking for a bone, and the only thing it can find to gnaw on is your ego.

It may be that we are too hard on ourselves sometimes. Self-acceptance is one of the things that provide you with a certain amount of happiness in life. Me? I've always been OK with me. Lately, however, I have noticed a certain tendency to wonder how come I can't do certain things the way I used to do them. Like running. I once jogged every day. Now the idea of going out and pounding shoe to asphalt never enters my mind. If it did, that puddle down the road there might very possibly be me, and I'm not sure I'd be here with you this morning.

It's all about kindness, isn't it? I mean, all of our lives, we try to be kind to other people, but we are rarely kind to ourselves. We're always our own worst critics ... although I must admit that ex-girlfriends might take exception with that statement.

That's just it though, isn't it?

Other people you can ignore, ditch, banish, or hide from, but you can't ignore, ditch, banish or hide from yourself.

You are your one truly lifelong companion. There's no getting away from the me in you.

It's kind of crappy, however, when that me in the mirror turns out to be an ass. Well, maybe that me is just trying to tell this me something that I didn't already know.

So it goes ...



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