Now realizing back in my earliest childhood days and teens

an inexorable coat of arms draped over my extended family

it being a unique container reeking of whiskey but filled by my kin

supplanting a ship in one of those impossible bottles


‘Irish milk’ it was jokingly yet ruefully called by the Eire choir

other members of my jumbled heritage not so quip literate

the males never in need of an occasion to disappear another sixer

the female DNA in my lineage being reluctant collaborators


This excess liquid cowardice brutally poisoned all in reach

awakening demons requiring just such nutrients for release

the imbibers briefly relieved of their day-to-day burdens

accepting tit-for-tat as a grotesquely even proposition


Still, mine was mostly a family of decent beating hearts

yet busted up and dwarfed lives so very raw and real

with dreams drawn but primarily self-quartered

and loves mutilated despite appearances peripherally intact


Our poverty of mind and wallet an incognito fait accompli

but it gathers no leavening to spit at oneself

true, nobody ever once asked as to our two cents

likely because we showed no means of affording it


Generations later, by tilting at the malignancies

and changes empowered by will and through foresight

we carry a lessened assortment of scarlet letters

with reddened scars now hidden under middle class costumes

The Silent Life

Not too long after squeezing out of the womb

encountering the first of many inferred admonitions

my proferred alms became assurances

“I’m just here to observe”

My blankness thus ingrained, designating me negligible and safe


Yes, I indivisible-ized myself

choosing residence in the shadows

abiding in my multiple sanctuaries

facilitating a minimalist social repertoire

in a life of frugal mercies


Banking facts, figures and ideas

my stockpile of interactive fuel

aided by ghostly guide dogs for the tentative and unsure

quiet reading, yes. silent viewing, okay. thinking (to myself), affirmative.

expressing feeling? danger !!! danger!!!


What about questions?

is the stone to be polished or rolled away?

as if I knew anything about either

fleshing these bones — a step too soon?

for to speak is to create a real me

Blinded By Perpetual Neediness

The genesis: — “Bush On The Couch” by Dr. Justin A. Frank

It’s your station in life commanding fear or respect

a quality forged by bridges built or wrecked

to aid the weak or succor the powerful

it’s a mantle earned by who you call and cull


Being so broken, drink or dominion offer no fix

the holes and flaws become your dominatrix

the higher you go harming on a grander scale

the naked light of failure a darker shade of pale


Scuttlin’ from reality, gripping your demon shield

blissful sadism and omnipotence to wickedly wield

tethered to a megalomania writ oh so divine

fostering a callousness of the impervious kind


Running and hiding when it was your turn

keeping the VC out of downtown Galveston

as commander, you tell who to kick ass

but in your time to serve, you took a pass


An entire life riddled and riven by grievous need

drunk or sober bathing in moral bankruptcy

the U.S. presidency so way out of your league

or a brush cowboy Al-Qaeda-failure-to-heed


3,000 people perished in infernos today

code red intel spikes spelling a fray

yet tragedy’s lesson ends with this call

you’ll just need to head out to the mall


Because it doesn’t matter what or how

winning the moment, your sacred cow

in your empty suit which you so belong

just bang a gong, getting your war on


Chaney and the rest spun you like a top

with a wink and a nod to a virtueless sop

them knowing just what to do and say

GeorgieT got asked to come out and play


Sending soldiers off to your madeup war

sexing up the terms, stacking the score

bodies come back, maimed or boxed

your crocodile tears smudging the cost


Jesus ain’t served by your lies and war

or trying incessantly to top Daddy’s score

never saying sorry ’cause nobody else mattered

the dead decomposing, their being splattered


Just go with the gut, light on the fact

to hell with looking forward and back

no need for analysis and surely no debate

that’s work and carries too heavy a freight


New Orleans drowns in water and wind

while who’s pickin’ a guitar, flashing a grin

What was predicted sadly came to pass

“Heckuva job Brownie” is what’s heard last


Tryin’ now to counterfeit what is history

judgment lapses for all to feel and see

truth as mangled as your brand of compassion

making selfless good something to ration


Dylan, yes, he was spot on back in 1965

telling us with a wink and his loquacious jive

it don’t take a weatherman to make the deduction

GWB, yes, he’s a weapon of mass destruction


(written in 2011)

A Lullaby For The Dark

Sour neighborhoods cluttered with soft hard kids

the gates of egress adorned with prickly spikes

no directional signage for life’s stations of the cross

very few chutes, mostly mirages of ladders, minus rungs

perchance to dream, sure, more likely just lay low


Slickly oiled up and anointed as tabula rasas

ensconced in the insidest of sick jokes

breathing in and out in a sundown world 24/7/365

the keys to any kingdom always beyond grasp

it’s a fabled concept spewed by word torturers


In even the most forlorn, yes, resides a dim glimmer of hope

can it ever intermittently eschew dormancy, or even artfully rule?

Try attempting facing the mirror and diving through the distortion

seeking the sprouting, shunning the stunted and gnarled

while praying all searing pain and hurt could be exit wounds


It was another usual day

Not much in the way of highs nor lows

So how to provoke my desired state of being?

The light turned red, I slowed up and obeyed, first in line to speed off when given a greenie

Then, my perspective on and of the world changed

As the color periwinkle appeared rather than the expected

I was bemused

Should I take it as a sign?

That it is in real life, but what of the metaphorical sense?

Maybe a gentle reminder of the immense beauty that remains unseen in the world?

Another example that modern technology was, yes, once again askew?

Possibly that I should be pursuing all the Peri Winkles listed on eharmony?

My reverie was interrupted by the sounds of horns squawking directly behind me

Being irritated because I was ahead of them was awfully shortsighted

You know, they could go around

I quickly sent out this vibration: ‘relax all, I am having a spiritual moment’

But I didn’t think I was going to get me a witness

A scruffy man appeared at my driver’s side window

He bellowed “are you hard of hearing or just blind bud?”

On my right was a kind-looking woman who knocked and asked “do you need help?”

I turned in her direction, smiled, then hesitantly asked, “do you know your colors?”

Sense of Self

Who was I?
I didn’t know at 7, 14, 21, 28, 35…
When I was young, I never knew I needed to know myself
That was never an assignment
I just lived each day
ingesting whatever came my way
what else was there?
carpe diem being something about a fish
was it my quiet neediness that overwhelmed my reflection?
Or an ordinary case of blindness traveling on the oblivious thruway?
I was everyone, yet no one. A self-induced facade
Empty inside
An adapter to surroundings
Well-liked but for what? Reflecting others?
I, wasn’t.

— inspired by a poetry writing class prompt about an earlier sense of self

Birth to death

Yes, he successfully conquered water
turned vintner with a spicy zinfandel
the masses at the miracle collective
believed the finish kept their deaths at bay

He a Mecca born and bred commando
the purveyor of the peaceful sword
his preaching saved huddled masses
while infidels brutalized his words

Yes, from stony Jerusalem to sandy Mecca
the spectrum of deeds belied their beliefs
safe harbor for true followers dimming
perverse sanctuary for killers and thieves

The seeking of the everlasting life policy
call it upscaling the forever vacation
just say the magic words in the correct ear
for just-in-time personal gentrification

But all remains ashes to ashes, dust to dust
passports unstamped for angels-on-high camp
life is truth and lies, pleasure with pain
amidst lonely flickers of humanity’s righteous lamp

Let’s call our end what it is — an endless rest
from a life lived both holy and hell
identity and actions fully legible and owned
at the very last tolling of the bell



Whether sister, brother, sinner or saint
travail and grace reside throughout our house
and blindness, lured by our halos and demons
eclipses our pathway and obscures our rooms…

Beginning Again

Stripped of earthly veneer, I am naked to the world
the marks of this temporal crucible apparent to all
my cloak, woven of secrets and lies, liberated
revealing a past of impenetrable, well-versed charade

An arrhythmic rebirth, a future offering renewal
my gait unsure, as if balancing on a tenuous cable
the vision of gossamer wings glimmering in the distance
a harbinger witness to the birthright of redemption

Clutching at fervent dreams and chimerical visions
a faraway echo guides me, whispering, chiding
‘there is but one true pathway and it is through the heart
but one wonder of the world, it is love’