The countdown has long since begun:
We’re down to three, then two, then one…
On Thursday as the stores go black
To honor avarice, think back
To what we underwent this year
That brought us, mostly whole, to here.
It hasn’t been a pleasant ride
For everyone, and though we’ve tried
To keep in mind the greater good,
It’s hard to act the way we should
On each and every trying day
Throughout the year…and that’s okay.
It’s all the more important, though,
To recognize that this is so
Occasionally, lest we lose
The joy of feet for lack of shoes.
We have an opportunity
Thanksgiving Day to remedy
That oversight to which we all
Fall prey: Give thanks.
Then hit the mall.

An Open Letter to @RepSchrader

@RepSchrader: You keep saying
Nothing in this bill’s delaying
Any refugees from seeking
Safety here, and we’re all freaking
Out for nothing. Thanks for linking
To the text. It got me thinking,
Which is necessary so
We recognize what we don’t know.
Now, you propose our country’s laws
Should now include a special clause
Subjecting “certain aliens”
To extra checks for safety’s ends.
This appears to have one meaning:
“In addition to the screening”
Already in place, those who
Are “covered aliens” go through
A “supplemental” background check–
Which you say doesn’t stack the deck
Against said population–plus
Said check then needs “unanimous
Concurrence” from the heads of three
Fed agencies, which then will be
Reported to “appropriate
Congressional Committees,” set
Out in subsections (A) through (L)
Of Section 2(e)(2). You tell
Us this addition to our laws
Won’t somehow introduce a “pause”
(To put a strongly positive
Interpretation on it)? Give
Me just a little credit, sir.
It’s not as if conditions were
Not tough enough for refugees,
Now applicants will have to please
A dozen groups of congressmen
Before proceedings may begin?
And none of this will constitute
A special burden, sir? Well, shoot,
If that’s the case, then why not ask
All refugees to pass that task,
And not just Syrians and those
Who’ve visited Iraq? Suppose
We didn’t single such folks out.
Would you have signed this bill? I doubt
You would have, since American
Tradition would preclude that. Then
Explain to me, please, how this bill
Does not discriminate? I will,
Along with Lady Liberty,
Look forward to your answer. We
Once welcomed at our “golden door”
All wretched, homeless masses; your
Endorsement of this bill rejects
That noble pledge in most respects.
So, what’s the SAFE Act for, again?
–Confused in Salem, Oregon.


No one knows the secret fear I’ll
Not disclose. It’s immaterial.
What exactly makes me cringe
Is not for you to know. Don’t whinge
(Or, if you’re not pretentious, whine),
This undercover horror’s mine
And mine alone. To share would be
The worst that could occur to me–
Whoops! No, I mean, who cares? Not I!
Just listen to me whistle…!


Calvin, back in 1985,
Was six years old, which means today he’d be
Approaching middle age, but still alive.
For Hobbes, the news is less sublime. You see,
A tiger in captivity may live
A quarter-century or thereabouts.
To tally thirty years, we’d have to give
That cat the benefit of megadoubts.
The CEO of SpiffCo LLC
(The firm that launched the space tourism craze)
Is lonesome, which he never thought he’d be
When Hobbes and he entossed their salad days.
Transmogrified in daydreams, though, the friends
Scream down a wagon ride that never ends.

Plumb Lazy

There’s a leak beneath my sink.
I hear it when I fetch a drink
And dump my tepid backwash out.
It’s something simple, I’ve no doubt:
A quarter-twist to cinch a seal
Will likely fix it. Still, I feel
I owe it to myself to wait
Until it’s practically too late
And nearly time to call a pro
And then dive in. Not too long, though,
‘Cause being forced to call a plumber
Is a handy-manly bummer.
No, it’s best to let it fester,
Then apply my leak-arrester
Just in time to save some money,
Smile, and say, “You’re welcome, honey.”