Chaos Cheery

Biology has brought us here
And not Philosophy, I fear.
Or, rather, don’t fear. It’s okay,
It doesn’t matter anyway.
If cosmic force was brought to bear
To bring us here, I couldn’t care
Much less than if coincidence
Deserved (or not) the credit, since
What matters is that you and I
Are here, together, now. Screw why!
Expound, abbreviate, forget–
What’s salient is that we’ve met,
And going forward, one thing’s sure:
The only reason I’m is you’re.

Polar Vortex

Of all the vortices that I’ve
Encountered, those in which I thrive
Least comfortably are of polar
Origin. A throbbing molar;
Cardboard papercuts immersed
In lemon juice; a blister burst
Beneath a toe while miles from home–
All bliss compared to snow from Nome
Or frigid winds and storms spun forth
From polar regions way up north.
If I must endure a vortex
I’d prefer one for which Gore-Tex®
Garments are not de rigueur.
The ones we’ve had this season? Brrr!
What comfort, though, for frozen folks
That climate change is all a hoax!
That means this cold will pass and then
We’ll never see its like again.
So, what’s with all this “vortex” hype? Oh,
They meant vertex–just a typo.

American Favorite Ballads – Tunes and Songs as Sung by Pete Seeger

My copy of the book is worn–
Came out a year ‘fore I was born;
The backplate, golden-hued and creased,
Shows he whose life has lately ceased,
And every song inside its pages
I’ve known since I’ve known of ages.
That’s hyperbole, of course,
But when you trace each to its source
You’ll find that nearly every song
Has echoed ’round the land so long
That no one’s sure from whence it came.
Who wrote it? No one knows his name.
Or her name–gender’s lost as well.
In fact, as far as we can tell
For Lead(pipe)belly sure, these tunes
Came down to us in Pictish Runes
Or paintings on a French cave wall…
My point is, we don’t know at all.
The thing we do know, though, is this:
Pete sang ’em, and the rest is bliss.

Long Shadow

I don’t play guitar–
Well, I do, but not well.
I can carry a tune
But not so’s you can tell.
On a scale (ha!) from Diva
To Dreadful, I’m Oke;
From Hip-Hop to Opera,
I’d barely rate Folk.
But I can appreciate
Those who excel,
The ones who do music
And stuff really well.
I’m talking your Mozart,
Beethoven, or Bieber:
They’d all have sucked, but for
The late, great Pete Seeger.


Notes blow by in flights and flashes
Only heard when something clashes
Or a syncopated rhythm
Takes the stage, and you’re not with ’em.
Practicing is paying off
For everyone tonight! Right? (Cough!)
Puff your cheeks, pretend to blow,
And nobody will ever know….


The tiny fish behind my eye
Says, “Go to sleep!” but won’t say why.
Should I refuse? Would yes be best?
I haven’t studied for this test.
What’s riskier: Resist the fish,
Or acquiesce unto its wish?
And, more important, what’s the move
Of which my mentor’d most approve?
The fish says sleep, but I won’t go
‘Til Nostril Osprey tells me so.


Time, they say, will never wait
For man nor beast; its constant rate
Of passage may be quite relied
Upon, as sailors trust the tide.
The “they” who say this, I submit,
Have never tried to measure it
While standing, squirming, in the hall
Outside a busy bathroom stall.