POEM: License, Insurance, and Registration

police-car

“License, Insurance, and Registration”

 

Please.

 

Shiny black cop cars

compact fuel economying

across city streets and

highways, two counties

wide. An assault of vehicles

by sheer numbers on an

otherwise uneventful day

–no holiday traffic,

no special events,

no reason apparent

for the barrage of Blue

all burnished and new.

 

Bright blue lights

spiral drivers to

the edge. Must be the day

the new patrol cars arrive

begging to be driven,

needing validation

by way of speeding tickets

and arrests, my taxpayer

dollars paying for each

glitzy new vehicle

to slow traffic,

raise my insurance,

and justify the expense

of shiny black cop cars.

 

I hand over my papers,

look the cop in the eye and tell her,

 

You’re welcome.

 

 

 

 

Upcoming events:

April 27th

Akron Nervous Dog Poetry Night from 6pm-9pm. I will be reading for about twenty minutes, so I hope to see you there!

April 28th

Western Reserve Writers’ Conference(9am-430pm) If you get a chance to attend, it’s definitely worth the trip!

 

*This poem was inspired by the day 18 prompt for National Poetry Month, courtesy of Cuyahoga Library combined with an oddly high number of police vehicles in my area the previous day.
*image courtesy of http://publicdomainpictures.net/

 

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POEM: Young at Heart

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“Young at Heart”

 

The oldest person I have known

had paper pale skin that hung

in sheets off her

frail emaciated frame,

a thin wisp of a woman

with silver white hair

and glasses with lenses so thick

they opaqued with light

or magnified her

round eyes anime large,

the bright blue orbs

of a young pretty girl

trapped in an old woman’s body.

 

She wore flowers in her hair.

 

 

 

If you enjoyed that poem, please come to the Massillon Public Library’s Local Author Fair on Saturday, April 14th from 11am – 2pm where I will be reading, along with other talented local authors.

Thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoyed the poem.

.

*This poem was inspired by the day 9 prompt for National Poetry Month, courtesy of Cuyahoga Library

*image courtesy of http://publicdomainpictures.net/

 

Book Review: Kisha Nicole Foster –POEMS 1999-2014

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I first had the pleasure of seeing this poet perform one of her poems at the Cleveland Main Library some time ago. I remember she put her whole body into her performance, projecting her voice, and infusing each syllable with meaning and emotion. This book is a testament to how well her performance poetry works on paper as well as in person.

Some of her poems are abstract, relying on sound and impression to create an emotional impact, so that while I did not know what every line meant, my impressions were strong; moods were set. I could hear and imagine each line as I read, and sometimes I read them aloud to make audible connections I might have missed with a silent reading.

Others are all too clear in their meaning. She doesn’t hold back, so that when you read verses about painful loss and heartbreak, you empathise. Much of her work is deeply personal: reflections on loss and desire and how past mistakes inform the better person she has become today.

Absence of punctuation in some poems aids in the blending of lines to create multiple meanings, not knowing where one thought ends and the other begins. She is adept at using color and imagery, and some lines stand out such as (from “POEM. ONE. FOR. EVERYONE.”)

“let’s tell the truth to shame the lies”

The subject matter varies from one poem to another as well: homages, such as “A Viking Story”; love poems, such as “Say Come Love”; and others that are calls to action or deeply personal such as “UNTITLED.”

“in the cold wind of Cleveland you brought me home

to rewalk the path that I laid

move the mountains I made”

This is an eclectic collection, disparate subjects and styles united by her unique voice. I enjoyed this collection immensely and heartily recommend, Kisha Nicole Foster: poems 1999-2014, to any poetry lover.

Current Events: April 2018

Every April is National Poetry Month, as decreed by the Academy of American Poets in 1996. One of the things I love most about living in northern Ohio is the writing community. Cuyahoga and Cleveland have two of the best public library systems in the entire country–for very good reason: both support their writing communities with literary events and outreach programs, public readings, open mics, and free workshops and classes.

During the month of April, for several years now, Cuyahoga County Public Library has celebrated National Poetry Month each April by giving the community a month of daily poetry. If you sign up for their email reminders, each morning you will wake up to a new poem, a poetry recommendation, and–my favorite part–a writing prompt for the day! I can’t recommend this enough; it’s one of my favorite things about this time of year!

As if that isn’t enough, there are tons of poetry events throughout both Summit and Stark County. I’m going to share a few with you, and I’m really excited to be reading at some of them!

Saturday, April 14th, 1030am-1230pm: (free) Literary Cleveland Poetry Workshop
@ Cleveland Main Library
–bring 10-15 copies of a poem you would like to workshop

Saturday, April 14th, 11am-2pm: (free) Local Author Fair
@ Massillon Library This will be my second appearance at this Local Author Fair. I hope you will stop by and discover some great local talent!

Sunday, April 15th, 2pm-4pm: Foolin’ Around with Poetry
@ South Euclid-Lyndhurst Branch of Cuyahoga Library
Meeting Room 162 (20)

Saturday, April 21st, 1pm-230pm: (free) Open Mic Poetry Featuring CSA Student Poets
@ Cleveland Main Library
Literature Dept
2nd floor

Friday, April 27th, 6pm-9pm: Nervous Dog Akron Poetry Night
@ Nervous Dog Coffee Bar
I am thrilled to be reading some of my poetry at this event!

Saturday, April 28th, 9am-430pm: (free) Western Reserve Writers’ Conference
@ South Euclid-Lyndhurst Branch of Cuyahoga Library
If you are not lucky enough to live in Ohio, you can still check out your local libraries to see what events they host during the month of April. And email knows no state boundaries, so you can still sign up for the Read Write Poetry emails from Cuyahoga library. No matter what you choose to do, I wish you a happy April!

POEM: Thinking in Poetry

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“Thinking in Poetry”

Narrating my day
as I go about the hours,
silently writing in my mind
that the corn on the cob I examine
is yellow with absorbed sunlight,
its golden white kernels
its own clouds and sun,
huge globes plump with the rain
of so many seasons,
and the taste of spring

the drowsy sun fades
behind the black silhouette
of a springtime tree

the air smells of lilac
or honeysuckle or apple blossoms,
the pungent sweetness
of blooming spring flowers

 

 

 

 

*Thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoyed the poem.
*image courtesy of http://publicdomainpictures.net/

POEM: Serial Killer in the Laundromat

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“Serial Killer in the Laundromat”

 

As he walks in the open door

I’m acutely conscious of

 

how alone I am

 

how athletic he looks

–the man that holds

the plastic garbage bag

big enough to hide a body,

                            thick enough to snuff my life

when slipped over my head,

                         the soft layered plastic

becomes a black sucking “O”

as I struggle to breathe.

 

How easily he pins me,

 

holds me down until my fight is gone,

 

my light snuffed, then stuffed

inside a plastic shroud

he dumps me

           so much garbage

                            in the bin

–or perhaps he takes

(what’s left of) me to a secluded

                                 copse of trees,

my remains remain hidden,

whereabouts unknown.

 

If I’d chosen the folding table closer

to the door instead of the dryers,

my escape would not be cut off.

 

I keep my key handy by my side,

                             to thrust

into the eye of my attacker. From the edge

of my vision, I see him stop,

turn

      in my direction,

                    and begin

 

pulling clothes from the dryer

into the enormous shapeless sack.

I continue folding,

pretend not to notice him

until he leaves when I

breathe again

 

until next time

my clothes need washing:

I flash again on every killer,

every monster, every unsolved mystery,

and every abduction discovered

as I once more enter the

deserted laundromat.

 

POEM: Atheology

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“Atheology”

 

Atheist creation

the eternity of a starry night

gazing into millennia past, remembering we are all

composed of stardust

 

Atheist god

the voice that whispers inspiration in the darkness

in the soft quiet of an afternoon, before the rainstorm

when electricity is in the air and all dreams seem possible

in the zone of contemplation, in the act of creation

of life and art and the crafting of something that before

only lived in the heart and mind

 

Atheist afterlife

the soft whisper of friends remembering the past and

dreaming of the future, returned to dust and earth, our matter

neither created nor destroyed, merely transformed

to continue the cycle of life, we never cease, we exist in each eternal moment

 

Atheist heaven

the rapture of creation and transformation, of smiles and laughter,

birthdays spent with friends, the whispered confidences of a lover,

the soft breath of a newborn, and the quiet realization

 

following our bliss, we create paradise.

 

 

 

 

 

*Thank you for visiting. I hope you enjoyed the poem.

*image courtesy of http://publicdomainpictures.net/