Friday, January 20, 2012

R.I.P., John Banner (poem)

It was never my intention
to pay homage
to Sergeant Schultz
on Hogan's Heroes
in my choice of outerwear

But my warmest winter coat
is long and gray and wool
All I need is the helmet
to complete the look
R.I.P., John Banner

My Sergeant Schultz coat
has two large front pockets
big enough to hide strudel

Every snowstorm I say to myself
as I walk out the door
to brush a foot of snow
off my car
don't forget to close the flaps on your pockets first
so they don't get filled with snow

Every snowstorm I forget

Strangely heavy feeling as I walk into the house
a pool of water underneath the coat hook
the dog looks virtuous

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Three Meetings On Monday Morning (poem)

I will get up from this chair
smile pleasantly at the questioning faces
and walk out the conference room door
to find myself on the platform in good time
to catch the train that goes from Minnesota in winter
to Dublin in mid-springtime
with a stop for a slow lunch and a Dubonnet rouge
in a Paris cafe where once
I taught my lover that hazel is the word
for eyes not blue not green not gray not brown.

Friday, January 6, 2012

In My Defense, I Point Out That At Least I Wasn't Drinking Alone (poem)

The day with its claws well stuck in
What will loosen that hold?

The preferred potion
old as time
guaranteed to kill days and claws
warm together lemon, honey
warm the mug, too
add the whiskey
stir with spoon
fill the mug
drink it down

I'm sure I could find
for the skeptical.

Last night I carried
from Bloomington to Burnsville
in addition to my own
not insubstantial weight
a particularly large bird.

I told him birds are
not allowed inside the house.
I threatened him
with Dakota County Animal Control.
He rode me in through the door
his claws deep
in the back of my right shoulder.

I tried music.
I tried laughing
when the live audience laughed.
I tried a little leftover smoked turkey
and a nice glass of iced water.
I tried all the humane methods.

But there was nothing for it
but to resort to a poison
old as time.

The first one didn't work.
The second also failed.
The third I made
minus the lemon,
the honey,
the heating,
the mug,
the spoon.

I thought briefly
that I ought to give this variant recipe
a catchy name all its own.
But there's no need.
It already has one.