Posts Tagged ‘verse’

Upside Down

August 11, 2017

 

Upside down beside the walk,
a gray squirrel hung on a tree,
a tag on his ear, a twitch in his nose,
and a sad little look for me.

“Squirrel,” I said, “You’re gray as lead.
Who stuck that tag on thee?
Some student crew has a project due
for a class in zoology.”

To hang in the air as dull as a bear
who sleeps in a sewer drain.
To stare at a man who is reaching a hand
to staple a tag by your brain.

To twitch like a sprout that is twisting about
under a new-paved lane.
To look down at me here under your tree
and not even know to complain.

  

First published in Mostly Maine.

 

Mikey Feeds a Squirrel, Florida, 1950's - photo probably by Bernie Smetzer

Feeding a Squirrel, Florida, 1950’s

 

The Letter

August 9, 2017

 

By a hydrant where a postman
dropped a letter on the ground,
sat a vagrant being vagrant
when the letter fluttered down.

On the battered, buttered vagrant
dropped the letter falling down,
but the vagrant only muttered
and the postman kept his round.

Now a vagrant and a letter
are both vagrant on the ground
by a noble fire hydrant
that the postman steps around,

and the vagrant often mutters
of such matters that astound,
but the letter knowing better
only flutters up and down.

 

First published in Mostly Maine.

 

Discussion

“The Letter” comes with a deep “Puss in Boots” bow and sweep of the hat to all the great children’s poetry and prose that we have inherited. They say many older children’s poems had hidden meaning, now largely forgotten. “The Letter” jump starts the process by starting out life with no hidden meaning whatsoever. It is simply meant to be listened to and enjoyed.

Below is a word design or concrete poem that is not meant to be listened to at all, but is meant to be seen and enjoyed. Just as “The Letter” is a bit of nonsense poetry, “oNo” is a bit of nonsense word art. Creative nonsense is essential to my happiness. Of course, some may prefer science, mathematics or diplomacy. From what I can figure out from quantum physics and the Trump administration, it all comes together in the end.

 

"oNo" - a word design by Mike Smetzer

“oNo” – a word design. Offered here as a emblem for the year 2017.

 

First published in Phoebus.

 

Country Fable

June 18, 2017

 

A matronly pheasant walks into a field
and sees four cows looking down a well.

Flying up on a cow, she peers down at
cock pheasant looking up from the bottom.

“Good!” she says, “Let him stay there!
He can check out the well’s bottom for a change.”

“Know what you mean,” sighs one cow.
“Last week our bull fell in the cistern.”

“Bet he was ugly! Did you get help?”
“Noooo,” answers the cow. “He’s still there.”

“Been sweet and peaceful,” says another cow,
chewing cud, “except for the stink.”

“Hey!” says a third cow, “Come share our corn.
Good shelled corn! Farmer’s wife don’t care.”

“But the farmer!” cries the pheasant, alarmed.
“Fell in the silo,” say all the cows.

 

Copyright © 2017 by Michael B. Smetzer

Bernie Smetzer and the chickens

Dad with his Chickens