Tag Archives: humor



Percy Beast Sheltie
was a poet’s dog,
knew how to lie
quiet at his master’s feet

lifting an eyelid
patiently patient
for dactyl or trochee;

for iamb or anapest:
a wag of the tail
demure and discreet.

Wait for the best
was his motto.
His favorite poem?
A spondee: let’s eat.



Without you, the cat
has lost his
piss and vinegar.
His alarm clock died.

Remember that old macho paw–
the velvet drumstick
he would play upon our cheeks
to be let out?
He doesn’t do it anymore.

Since you left
he hardly steps outside, he
stretches in the stale
hollow of your pillow, settles-in
to merely watch
the birds chase maple buds.

We watch them together,
the cat and I, we

try to figure how
to start the day without you.
The cat
just sleeps it off.
I write these letters
on the ceiling.
And the letters say please,
please come back

for the sake of the cat.



April is much too
late in March for snow
but I feel much more like I do
now than I did a while ago
for I’ve just seen a great movie–
don’t miss it if you possibly can–
it was like a flash in the dark
or a shot in the pan
and in three dimensions:
black and white and color,
you know, a casual affair
between a donut and a cruller?
The theme, I think, was LIFE
(but you really had to be there)
starring Beatrice Somebody
& Art Guesswho.  (I wonder
who does her hair…and why).
Anyway, these two were like
twins, though one looked
more alike, and listen to this:
“they read no more that day.”
And if that doesn’t take your
day and make your cake,
right there I gave myself
to Art, just for art’s sake.

(I wrote this 35 years ago and take it out for an airing
now in honor of April Fool’s Day.  The snowbanks
along the sides of my street are still five dirty feet high.)



The Christmas Fake Book
slumps a little, limp
beneath the piano light,
looking a bit leftover
this december twenty-sixth–
as if it could not hark
to one more herald angel,
little town of Bethlehem or
not-so-silent night.

It has served well
the eye, the ear,
the memory in the fingers
dancing on the keys.
It has sustained the loud,
the tone-deaf-but-sincere,
who gathered here to sing
those half-remembered verses
come to haunt again this year.

Now it’s done,
like christmas day itself–
all noise and wonder
packed in a small space.
It will go back
to live among the sheaves
of music on a shelf, there
at the very bottom of the stack,
to take its usual place.



brown as he is and
small can get fed-up
with scratching at steel wall

while bread alone
grows stale on silent
night in the breadbox.

This is enough
and not enough, he says
starved as he is and
a fool for screaming ladies
tottering on chairs.

Too long in this house
not having seen a lily
or a field

this is enough
excuse for a circus.