Happy Things You Shouldn’t Lick (Part 1)

Electrons flow from pos to neg
Producing heat to fry an egg
Or, alternately (if what drove ’em
Was the fridge switch), chill that ovum.
Either way–this time of year,
Especially–I’m glad they’re here.
In wintertime I’ll wear a sweater;
Summer, though, A.C. is better.
Thanks, electrons, for your current
Contributions. If you weren’t
Here to help me, I’d be nude
And drenched in sweat, and that’s just rude.
I’m content because of you.
(I’m sure my neighbors thank you, too.)


So, anyway, I’m raveling my knitted sleeve of care
When all at once this gibbous cat eclipses Luggage Bear!
Be gone, thou foul, deformed beast! the cat and bear both cried,
And then they kiss’d. Embarrass’d, I woke up and went inside.


I haven’t tumbled yet to what it is I’ve yet to tumble to.
If something’s to be done, best count it un- if I’m the doer-who.
My sense is growing something’s going on that I, unknowingly,
Should know about; without a doubt, if someone’s been left out, I’m he.

Full Disclosure

Everything I know that we
See eye-to-eye upon, I’ll shout
About with joy, delight and glee;
The stuff you doubt? I’ll leave it out.

Nothing that would make you ill,
Discomfited or sad I’ll say.
If I suspect objection, ’till
The danger’s past, I’ll vamp away.

I’d never tell an outright lie
Or shade the truth until it’s dead
From lack of solar heat, but I
Might leave a painful fact unsaid.

So, full disclosure: Every word
I speak aloud, you’ll know is true.
Those other words you’ve never heard
Me say? You wouldn’t want me to.

Homecoming Fridge

Blue bread and chunky milk to drink?
No, wait, there’s orange juice, I think,
If you don’t mind the sparky buzz
That dances on your tongue because
The sugar’s started to ferment.
So weird. I shopped before I went!

Union Station, Portland OR

Summer solstice Saturday
Big hand on the twelve
Little just before the seven
Sitting by myself

Fellow from Alaska
Asks to use my phone
Fails to reach a friend at the far end
To take him home

Crowded, noneventful flight
Boxed in on three sides
By pairs of sometimes happy toddlers
Narrating their rides

One-handed photographer
Takes candid shots of stone
A mom and two kids hustle through
Then leave me here alone

Metal letters, marble walls
How many trains have passed since last
They carried smoking cars?

Big hand on the almost-six
The little strives toward eight
It’s awfully bright outside tonight
For getting home so late

A quiet end to days away
On kind of a vacation
Summer solstice Saturday
In Portland’s Union Station


Attend, good friend, the agelast
A fellow dour and sourcast
Whose mirthfulness is distant past
His erstwhile smiles were his last

No grin across his visage breaks
No cachinnating crow he makes
To merry-andrews’ mad mistakes
All laughter Agelast forsakes

Who knows wherefore he glowers so?
Why delectation had to go?
What changed exuberance to woe?
I hope and pray I never know.