Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Poem: Accumulation

Accumulation

On this cold, wintry day
As I step back in time
Left with remembrance
Through the years and the rhyme

Outside there is snowfall
Each flake is a thought
Memory once fading
For the moment, I’m caught

Those whispers that linger
Form the whole of the mind
All of them shaping
To the me I’ve defined

Some are now blessings
Many bore pain
As the snow fills the window
I am here just the same

We will shovel tomorrow
Call it snow cast aside
Like memories forgotten
Or at least that we’d hide

Copyright SGW 2008


Footnote: For my poetry challenge suggested by Michelle Hix of a memory I’d like to forget that played a role in who I am now. I cheated a bit, and do not mention any specifics, but I like where this went.

A Question

This is a bit risky, since I get almost all of my readers view searches, and have very few "regulars," but I would like to take a shot here that perhaps I can get a handful of comments.

I am looking for poetic writing topics. Be specific. If you suggest writing about something, go right to the core of the idea. Don't simply say that I should write about the ocean (Oh, I have done that one often.).

I am curious as to what responses I get, if any. Any subject suggested will get, at a minimum, a short vignette.

Go ahead, I triple-dog dare you!

Friday, December 26, 2008

A Strange Twist

An unscientific poll on CNN's website asks:

Will you miss President Bush?

Yes 20% 9,966
No 80% 41,080

I voted no because George W. Bush is arguably the worst president in our nation's history and a complete dolt. He did more damage to our country than any enemy could ever have hoped to do.

That said, during a performance a few weeks ago where I was reading poetry, I reflected upon a loss of sorts. Now, mind you, I do not see myself as either John Lennon or Paul McCartney. However, in seeing George W. Bush leave office, I realized that a great writing partner would be going away. He has been a muse in a way (Ok, twisted) for eight years. I know there are plenty of other nuts on the right, but there will never again be a Shrub.

I have other poems that never even made it to this website, and one more is coming on January 19th, but scroll my poetry list on the right and you will find at least a couple dozen pieces that either are directly about dumb dumb, or indirectly about what he helped bring the nation to.

I'll miss the big lug.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Happy Festivus ...

... because it is for the rest of us! Who's up for feats of strength and airing of grievances?

Monday, December 15, 2008

It Took Eight Years ...

... but I finally found something President Bush has done well - DUCK!!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Poem: Quit

Quit

Her smile burns in my mind
Another reminder
Out of reach one last time
I quit
Too many setbacks, and failures sting
Always a reason or excuse or complication
So that if everyone has a someone
Clearly I am neither
Not everyone
Nor even someone
Just alone
Resigned

Copyright 2008

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Poem: Light in the Tunnel

Light in the Tunnel

Who am I, what am I, what shall I be
The light in the tunnel is laughing at me
Flush with the promise of conclusive remark
And yet there’s the fear of the mostly-still dark
Perhaps it’s the riddle as only remnant remains
Temptation lays waste to the street peddler games
The trick is the eye can’t keep up with the hand
You never can win; it’s been long ago planned
Such is a life spent where debts go unpaid
The time passes quickly as foundations are laid
So sit by the river as it forever swims on
The beauty floats past like a sweet, tender song
Can’t catch the rhythm, though it beats in my heart
Its touch so elusive I would quit if I’d start
Is it luck or delusion to be stuck in the mud
You can’t run away so you drown in the flood
Minutes and hours and days slip on by
The cold realization of the tears I would cry
Sisters and brothers, hallelujah be praised
‘Neath the core of the poet is a fear he obeys
The light in the tunnel comes up steady and true
Train’s whistle blows, so there’s little to do

Copyright SGW 2008

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Poem: Fool

Fool

This trusting and full-of-faith spirit
With naïve, well meaning devotion
Fool
For those adored and admired will disappoint
So that sorrows become a deluge of regrets

An affirmation for dedication
A sort of fantastical illusion?
Fool
For transitory is the bond given
Too often and with so little weight

Fool to believe
Fool to love
Fool to trust
Fool to take in (Taken in?)
Fool to embrace

Always the fool
And to be again and again

Copyright SGW 2008

Monday, November 10, 2008

Poem: Incongruous

Incongruous

Casket lay before
A mass of quiet grieving
Stillness broken by
Balloons at a funeral

Copyright SGW 2008

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Artist ...

"The artist is the ridiculous fellow who takes on God as his creative rival. Sometimes God smiles at the effort, leans down, and contributes a vital touch here and there, which we call inspiration; and so a new work of art comes to exist."

Herman Wouke in "Youngblood Hawke."

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A New, New Frontier

My poem from earlier in the year: Barack.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Yes We Can


I was not alive in 1960, but I imagine my today was quite similar to what people who voted for JFK felt forty-eight years ago on Election Day. I felt strengthened as I drove to my polling station, and proud as I saw a small crowd waiting to participate in democracy.

And so I stood behind the curtain in the voting booth and stared at the screen with my green x mark beside Barack Obama's name. I wanted to meditate over the moment however briefly and bask in the glory of what it meant to me. We have come far as a country, yet have much still to do. An eight year horror is coming to an end, but it left ruin wherever it stepped. Hope, ideas and solutions mean more than lies and cynicism now. The Constitution can be restored to its hallowed place.

And I walked to my car and went to work, but continued to return to what this day was representative of. I shared in the promise of the future with Barack Obama, President - Elect Barack Obama, and I am alive with hope, yes, hope, in what America used to be and now just might become again. A long nightmare is in its death throes, a true leader has come to take us forward and, as many felt when they joined with John Fitzgerald Kennedy in 1960 to walk upon the New Frontier, so do I today say "Yes We Can," and I bask in the election of Barack Hussein (yes, let the fearmongers quiver with the use of a middle name) Obama.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Poem: RSVP

My niece is being Bat Mitzvahed in December and the invitation arrived the other day. I am used to the RSVP card having a box to check for whether you are coming or not. This one just had a space to write whatever you wanted. The limerick below resulted. Oh, as the envelope said Scott and Guest, and I am single, I thought Boo would be welcome, but my sister nixed that idea.


RSVP


An invitation by mail did come
And Jessica Fitch it is from
It says bring a guest
Maybe Boo I’d suggest?
He would settle to eat bits and crumb

So yes I shall gladly attend
RSVP by the post I do send
Not a chance I would miss
With a hug and a kiss
I will be there from starting to end

Copyright 2008

Sunday, October 19, 2008

7 Minutes and 9 Seconds Says Everything



Colin Powell has served in both Bush Administrations. He is a lifetime military man. This clip might be the most eloquently stated remarks yet in this election cycle.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Poem: Mirror Talk

Mirror Talk

There are no offered answers
In dead end roads of sought nothings.
Voices missed as shrill whiteness,
Speaking hollow words that die.

And death comes in poisons drunk;
Imbibed, thinking it nectar’s sustenance.
Instead, choking and compounding sickness.

The journey mocks in absurdities
Of Holy Grails providing fodder for fantastic stories;
Lore told to misdirect into a deeper maze.

Teach me to sing again once-wise brother.
Laughter, an echo still faintly present.
I wish to spin with arms spread open,
Diving into fields of forever green.

You, you hold all of mystery’s hidden secrets
Laid out in bountiful gifts of love;
To forgive, learn, dream ...
Breathe, rest ...
Bask in warmest providence.

Mirror, mirror on the wall ...

Copyright SGW 2007

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Republicanism?

Why does each Republican rally seem like a Medieval event? The hate, fear, fanaticism, and ignorance is mind-boggling.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Poem: An Ode To Sarah Palin

George Bush displays a serious lack of intelligence and curiosity of thought. He has met his match.

An Ode To Sarah Palin


Behold a great emptiness of certain display
It knows very little in fullest array
Taking pride in what’s simple, yet it simply falls short
Slow to all answers or well-thought retort
An agent of change … Ha! A wolf of the same
Preacher of values? More conniving a game
Speaketh in tongues; a fanatical fool
Of intelligent discourse? Avoidance her rule
The true bridge to nowhere is the path we’d be led
A road to more ruin inextricably wed
Of moose and of hockey and of frightening belief
After eight years ‘a moron, more a brain’d be relief
Too close to the trigger … or be named her next son?!
Another dolt near the White House and any hope is undone
With resounding rejection, pray the verdict be weighed
Crawling back to Wasilla where she first should have stayed

Copyright SGW 2008

And in Sarah's own words: "That's why I say I, like every American I'm speaking with, were ill about this position that we have been put in where it is the taxpayers looking to bail out. But ultimately, what the bailout does is help those who are concerned about the health-care reform that is needed to help shore up our economy, helping the - it's got to be all about job creation, too, shoring up our economy and putting it back on the right track. So health-care reform and reducing taxes and reining in spending has got to accompany tax reductions and tax relief for Americans. And trade, we've got to see trade as opportunity, not as a competitive, scary thing. But one in five jobs being created in the trade sector today, we've got to look at that as more opportunity. All those things under the umbrella of job creation. This bailout is a part of that." *

And to quote Whoopi Goldberg now: "(Mick), speak English!"

* Taken from Newsweek in an article by Fareed Zakaria.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

U.S. Citizenship Test

Could you pass the test? I got 10 out of 10. Sarah Palin said she would get back to the questioners later with answers.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Poem: Albatross

Albatross

With weight of dreams dissolved
Time pulls relentlessly
Until nothing remains of the promise
That never truly was anything more
Then possibility gone awry

Copyright SGW 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Give me a thinker

"How is it that, in a country founded by intellectuals, it's an insult to call someone an intellectual?"

Connie Schultz, columnist for the Plain Dealer of Cleveland

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Thoughts for today

1. Only a person who is disengaged from the people and will do nothing to help them would ever denigrate someone else for being a community activist.
2. For a guy, yogurt is a really difficult TV snack food. With one hand holding the container and the other handling the spoon, how do you work the remote?
3. This might be the best blog post I have ever read.
4. Who knew that when the glass ceiling was shattered it would not lead to a sunny sky, but a horribly, awful shard raining down upon us pretending to be something else.
5. I am voting for a man who is inspiring, agrees with me on most issues and will not act rashly or irrationally in the face of conflict. He happens to be black.
6. When FOX starts a news channel I will check it out.
7. C is STILL for cookie, and that is STILL good enough for me.
8. Do you think even Laura Bush deep down thinks he is a moron?
9. Why would anyone consider sitting up in a tree all day, drinking beer, holding a high powered rifle in some form of subconscious masturbation, waiting for a deer to stroll by before blowing its brains out to be sporting or manly? Cowardly, weak, cruel, and pointless come to mind, though.
10. I would be more open to the opinions of people who are anti-choice if they adopted and/or mentored young children in need. How come a fetus is of more value then the kids outside a woman's womb?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Poem: Cleanse

Cleanse

You move me in your silence
Speak in voices of time
As winds have blown hard
Life goes on forever changing and unchanged

The love of your touch stands as testament
A harmony both firm and giving
Soft and warm, yet hard and cold

You reflect all that we are and never can be
For the enduring memories held, are forgotten

I wash my feet clean
Soothing in the oneness to stand apart
Divorced of pain from hurts and tears
I cry in joyful bliss of a life

Copyright SGW 2008

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Hope is Worth It




Some make fun of the ideas, the dreams ... the hope. Others choose to believe that we can do better.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Poem: Fill In The Blank

Fill In The Blank

Come to me angel though I know not your name
Speak in your whispers yet love me the same
Wrap me in comfort that tears can absolve
See in my struggles a new path to evolve
Lie down beside me in repetitive breath
Bask in the touch of my gentle caress
Share in a laughter as our loving refrain
The joy of two people, all I’d ask to obtain
Come to me angel with your spirit and soul
The sum of two parts is much greater than whole

Copyright SGW 2008

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Words to Live By

"C is for cookie - that's good enough for me."

No words have ever been uttered that were more true.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Guns, Guns and more Guns!

Ok, I am anti-gun. I do not believe the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to bear arms, and even if it did, the world was different in the 18th Century.

I see no need for high-tech equipment to be owned by regular people, do not believe that armed homes increase protection (more likely, the owner's will have an accidental shooting in the house involving their own children) and feel hunting is an unnecessary activity in today's society - not to mention being as far from sporting as possible.

We are a nation addicted to a terrible vice that has made us more violent and increasingly prone to violent deaths. Now, we've gone to the next level.

Harrold Independent School District in Texas is going to be arming its teachers. You can tell me how I should look at what happened in Columbine and Virginia Tech, to name a few. But I would argue that armed teachers will not prevent these events from happening. I hope I am wrong, but mark my words when I say that the first news event relating to this will be as follows:

1. Smart alec kid gets a tad over-obnoxious;
2. Teacher with gun has had a bad few days;
3. Smart alec kid pushes the teacher's buttons;
4. Teacher shoots smart alec kid and kills a child.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Poem: Bobby

Bobby

Impassioned every action
Evoking strong reaction
Caring for the masses
Cut through separate classes
Hungered for solutions
Soul of revolutions

The last honest man

Black or red or broken
Concern was never token
Heard the quiet voices
Refused to buy false choices
Spoke what needed speaking
Justice was his seeking

The last honest man

Bullet pierced conviction
Conscience was its victim
Future lay there bleeding
Within we’re self-defeating

The last honest man

Forty years since wasted
His vision barely tasted
No one burns his candle
And none assume the mantle

Of the last honest man

Copyright SGW 2008


I have always admired Robert Kennedy and consider him a hero. After recently completing Thurston Clarke's "The Last Campaign," detailing the 82 days of RFK's presidential bid in 1968, I am more convinced than ever of Bobby's greatness and what he would have done for this country. Kennedy, in my opinion, would have brought people together in ways beyond imagining, would have helped heal a broken nation and represented an opposite path from where we ended up walking - Nixon, Watergate, Reagan, beltway indecision, etc...,

President Robert Kennedy might have been one of our greatest presidents; perhaps only surpassed by Washington, Lincoln and FDR. We will never know for sure - we have a way of destroying the answers to our problems - but oh how we needed Bobby then. And oh how we need him today.

Poem: da Costa

da Costa

With the confidence that is genius revealed
Notes played with passion knowing infinite’s time
The detail of each thought conveyed tells of a Buddha’s wisdom
And I am in awe

As people sit on seat edges watching in amazed glory
Unaware, they are but pawns in a hand’s palm
Everything appears effortless, comfortable and true
And I am in awe

“I have seen the future of (music) and its name is”
da Costa
And the future is happening now

Copyright SGW 2008


Footnote: For the revelation that was an evening listening to Anthony da Costa. He is without a doubt one of the most talented artists I have ever experienced. I could find no other way to express what I witnessed and heard. The quotes are taken from a Jon Landau remark from the 70’s upon seeing Bruce Springsteen for the first time. I altered them a bit, but the idea is unchanged.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Poem: Designer Dogs And Their Looney People

Designer Dogs And Their Looney People

In the morning there’s a process that sure begins each day
With makeup and the jewelry, all part of a display
Comes pouncing up in greeting, and barking? No a yip
A little, four-legged dynamo bouncing to the hip

So off they go; a duo, the princess and her pride
A socialite or pseudo-star and doggie dignified
She dresses him in silly clothes to make some fashion mark
The pooch is more accessory and less about the bark

And pray forbid she lets him walk, no never, not a chance
Carries him from place to place; it’s all part of her “dance”
She’ll bring him into restaurants and must have him around
Whatever scene is happening, where she is, he is found

That’s all to tell, I’ll say no more on folks I find confusing
Britney, Paris or local brands, they all are unamusing



Copyright SGW 2008

Monday, August 4, 2008

Poem: Moments

Moments

These are the moments for glory;
The peaceful solitude of the world,
Where water falls, birds sing and times pass.

Silence permeates the wood.
Sun glistens upon the worn skin of earth.
And nature’s song beats like harmonious laughter.

As the unspoiled promise to Heaven’s door,
Residing in a hidden enclave of dreams,
In a mist of cleansing breath;
An awakening sprouts forth from within.

Just for one fleeting moment.
Just for one fleeting moment.

Copyright SGW 2008

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Words of Wisdom

Robert Kennedy - 1968: "I am on the side of those who are not afraid to recognize past error, who refuse to blindly pursue bankrupt policies which will rend us from our friends and drain our treasure, in the fruitless pursuit of illusions long since shattered."

Oh, how this applies to now!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Poem: Someone

Someone

Everyone has someone, as the tale’s been told
But everyone less this one, who is fast growing old
Chance sometimes offers up a whispering stream
Yet the moments are passing like an echoing dream
For everyone to someone makes a neat turn of phrase
But while time slowly empties, the truth gets betrayed
Wisdom of prophets shape a hypnotic lie
If the fables are sold then a someone shall buy
Bravely depicting all the storyline plots
Some are the haves, some, the have nots.

Copyright SGW 2008

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Batman: The Dark Knight

I admit it: I am a super hero movie geek. As a kid, I read thousands of comics books and loved the stuff. As an adult, I am right there on line waiting to see each new flick. I also am rather territorial about the movies staying true to the original comic books - Kudos to Spider-man, Iron Man, the second Hulk and the first couple of Christopher Reeve Superman movies, and finger wags/held nose for later Superman efforts, the Batman run of the 90's, the first Hulk, and Daredevil.

The latest Batman efforts are part of the group of quality movies that followed the ideas of the original comic books, but the recent effort, "Batman: The Dark Knight," goes to an entirely different level. The script, written by Jonathan Nolan, Christopher Nolan and David Goyer, is brilliant because it transcends comic books and looks at our society.

Are we as individuals and a society capable of making the right choices and sacrificing of ourselves in the process? Do the ends justify the means, and how far is too far? What is a hero? The movie attempts to answer some of these questions, but others are left to us for debate. There is nuance in the answers provided and in those left open. I left the theater feeling inspired by the thoughts I was brought to.

"The Dark Knight" is a great comic book superhero movie, but it is also a superb drama. Though it is seriously violent and dark, that is partly the point. We live in similar times after all.

There has been much hype about the performance of Heath Ledger as the Joker due to Ledger's subsequent death. Let me say that the accounts of Ledger in the role are understated; he is even better than that! This is clearly an Oscar-worthy portrayal. He is twisted, demonic, brilliant, pointless, frightening, and all too real. Ledger is gone, but his turn as the Joker will be enduring.

As mentioned above, there is a lot of violence and some scary scenes in the movie. I do not recommend taking any child under the mid-teen range. Also, I think it is important to discuss with teens why vigilanteism (sp?) is a slippery slope, and to engage in serious dialogue over the issue of ends and means. Had President Bush taken such time perhaps we would not have had Iraq, illegal spying and torture to deal with.

I highly recommend "Batman: The Dark Knight." It is without a doubt a thought provoking, entertaining and intelligent movie worth the price of admission.

Addendum: I forgot to mention something, but I just saw a "Batman" commercial, and it reminded me of a small, throwaway scene in the movie. When Batman is working on his new suit, Morgan Freeman's character says it will even protect him from cats (Batman had a run-in with some dogs). Foreshadowing of Catwoman in the next "Batman" movie?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Poem: Dandelions

Kids say the most abstract, yet wonderful things. My boss's daughter, who is ten years old, told him over breakfast that if she was president she would make a law that dandelions would be flowers instead of weeds. How could that not be a poem?!

Dandelions

Through ten year old eyes
Truths are revised
Laws will be changed
Ideas re-arranged
Dandelion grown
Weeds no more known
As flowers she sees
Perception’s degrees

Copyright SGW 2008

Monday, July 14, 2008

George Wirth

How lucky am I to be living in Monmouth County, New Jersey?! I have the beautiful Atlantic nearby, sometimes fast access to NYC and Philly, and so much character and promise in the area, if you look away from Route 9, the strip malls and the corrupt politicians. I also have great clubs and coffeehouses, like the Twisted Tree, where the best music can live and breathe, and a poet can find a sweet spot to pen his words.

It's in these music sanctuaries where a fan of the best of the singer-songwriter genre will find George Wirth. For those that have heard George play, saying he is a unique and original incarnation of Bob Dylan or the early or recent Bruce Springsteen would not raise an eyebrow. Those of us who are entranced by his words and music know that we are listening to something special; at once powerful and tender.

Previously, I have spoken about George Wirth here and here. The poem "Storyteller" is about him, too. That said, while there is a George Wirth performing, I am not certain there can be enough written about what a shining talent he is. With that in mind, I'd like to call your attention to more of George.

You can listen to my favorite song, "Weight of Sin," by downloading from the link. But George has now gone to an entirely new level with "Memorial Drive." This nine minute saga is about Asbury Park; but not. It is a slice of Americana that anyone will understand and relate to via the imagery of loss, emptiness and shattered dreams that translates no matter where you call home. Had Wirth attempted to write an Asbury Park song, or striven to channel Dylan or Springsteen, failure would have been likely; it would have lacked the integrity of truth. However, Wirth comes from a place that is all his own while striking a chord in each of us that is familiar nonetheless.

There, I have said enough; check it out for yourself.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Problem? What problem!?

Boo and catnip ... an interesting mix.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

And for something slightly less serious ...

... I just can't get enough of the Poo Song. Forgive me.

Message to some Liberals


If there was a blogosphere in 1992, liberals would have come across as very happy in it with regards to Bill Clinton as their nominee. He offered change, the future and, yes, hope. During the Democratic Convention that year, there was a promise in the air that felt energizing and uplifting, and any liberal not admitting to that is playing a game of revisionism. The one fear many of us had at the time revolved around the stories of "all the women."

Eight years later, the Bill Clinton presidency ended with the disappointment of what "might have been. " President Clinton had many economic successes, and a few international ones, too. However, he fell short because of those darn "other women," and a Republican Party willing to do anything to destroy him no matter the affect on the country.

But still, President Clinton's presidency, while not transformative (Senator Obama was correct on this), was a slightly better than average term that could have been more if he had kept his pants zipped, and had not been forced to work with the worst congress in the nation's history.

So now here we are with Senator Obama as our nominee, and similar messages of hope, change and promise have been put forth by his candidacy. Many of us feel the same promise of better days ahead that we felt in 1992 minus the fears of lack of zipper control.

And yet, many liberals have taken to attacking every little nonsensical item they can latch onto with Obama in the same way a Republican wingnut might do.

They say Obama disrespected women during the primaries. No, he did not. Outside of one "sweetie" remark, which was a mistake, but not that big a deal, the media was the guilty party. If anything, the campaign of Hillary Clinton, and particularly, Bill Clinton himself, were far more guilty of racist comments than Obama or the media was of sexism.

They say Obama has no experience. Well, he comes to the table having been a state legislator in Illinois, a U.S. Senator and a community activist. That might not be up there with what a Senator Joe Biden or a Governor Bill Richardson could offer, but it certainly equates to being governor of Arkansas in my book. Also, the same liberals crying about this, again, loved Bill Clinton, and while he made some early mistakes, namely Somalia and "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," I would like to believe Obama would have learned from those missteps.

They say Obama is somehow just "not right." They point to Mark Reszko, though Obama's ties to him are minimal and legal. Reverend Wright is mentioned, but I fail to see how anything he said become the ideas of Senator Obama. Growing up, there was very little my religious leader said that I agreed with. Also, is Hillary Clinton pro the Myanmar regime because her one-time campaign coordinator Mark Penn worked on their behalf?

They pass along E Mails about Obama being a Muslim (as if that should be a negative anyway), or being a radical Christian, or being influenced by a half-brother in Kenya he barely has been in the company of, or ... well the list goes on and on. But here is where the truth comes out. The liberals who grab hold of all this silliness and promote it, and who also spout concerns about him that were never mentioned with other candidates of similar or lesser ilk, reveal their true, dare I say, colors, in doing so.

Obama is black. That is it. Were he white, say Bill Clinton, liberal support for him would be overwhelming. Oh sure, these liberals don't hate black people. They probably even know or hang out with a few. The truth, though, is a person of color is a threat to them when put in a position of real power. The buried racism comes out at that point.

To those liberals, it is time to get over it. Barack Obama is a great candidate and will be a better president than John McCain in every way conceivable. He will be better than Bill Clinton was just in that it is hard to imagine any zipper issues getting in the way of his job. And he will be just as good, if not better than, Hillary Clinton, just on his lack of relative divisiveness. And if you get over your illogical fears, you can join in on the hope that the ruin laid forth over the last eight years is about to be reversed.

Racism is so unbecoming of you.

Yes you can. Yes we can.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Poem: Gardot

When I went to see what this week's prompt was, my first thought was not along the lines of what most others likely were. Instead, I went here ...

Gardot

With a sultry voice
The beautiful songstress breathes
And life comes to words

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Melody

Footnote: I have no financial or personal interest, but when something is THAT good, I recognize it as such.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Of the Dollar, and Nothing More

Whether televangelist, new age healer, revealer of keys to success, or spiritual guru, if they are selling the way, they do not possess any insights into finding it.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Poem: Bennies

The summer season has begun in New Jersey and ...

Bennies


If you bring to the beach more than you ever could hold
If you wear socks and cut-offs and large necklace, gold
If you say it’s “New Yawk” or you’ve radio booming
If you’ve all of these traits then I’m clearly assuming ...

You’re a Bennie.

If the Parkway’s a standstill of out of town cars
If you ransack our hot spots and clog up our bars
If you leave behind refuse to mark of your stay
If we beg and we plead will you please stay away

Damn Bennies!

If you’re part of the exodus that kicks up our sand
In your “Jersey Shore” t-shirts like locusts you land
If you say “Long Beach Island” we retort “LBI”
If you’re loud and you’re drunk then your actions imply ...

You’re a Bennie ... or maybe a Shoobie.

Copyright SGW 2008

Friday, June 13, 2008

Fight the Smears

Due to false rumors spread via the internet and Republican noise machines, not to mention the Clinton campaign through insinuation, Barack Obama has launched a website called "Fight the Smears" to fight back against all the lies ... and fear.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Poem: Cell Out

Cellular phones: We have gone insane over them! They definitely serve a purpose and are a wonderful convenience. But they can also be a sorry-ass excuse for rudeness, disconnect, distraction, and silliness.

Cell Out


No act diverts from the time spent attached
Ridiculous habits have relentlessly hatched
An addiction of measure quite absurdly attained
No thinking is given to any effort restrained

Gaggles of teens walk together, though barely
Each busy texting; interaction comes rarely
A guy in the gym must take calls while he works
Too many times I’m held up by these jerks
Listening to music, a cell phone blares out
Rudest of people, without any doubt
During movies or dinner or in library halls
Nothing can limit all these meaningless calls

Seen a man with a blue tooth planted firmly in ear
At a burial service, but he hardly could care
Full conversations on a grocery store line
And fully ignoring any “No Cell Phone” sign

There are places and times for a call to be taken
But from your seats at the ball game they are better forsaken
Each and every occurrence seems a reason to yap
I say take in the moment and shut your big trap!


Copyright SGW 2008

Friday, June 6, 2008

Remembering Daddy

It's a bit early for Father's Day, but check out this article at Newhouse News Service by Michele M. Melendez. She found me via the post I wrote last year called, "Father's Day." My post includes several poems, too.

Those who knew my father will appreciate both stories. Those who did not, should go "meet" an incredible guy.

Some fun observations on Michele's story:

1. I caught the baseball I am tossing in the picture despite looking at the camera.
2. The photographer picked the location, a small cemetery, saying, "I know it is a cemetery, but he (dad) did die." My family laughed the remark off, and the spot actually looks nice, but GEEZ!!
3. Now that those who have never seen me before can do so, do you understand my decision to use my cat, Boo, as my profile shot?
4. I hope "The Birmingham News" is one of the Newhouse papers to run the story. Southerners should see that not all of us up this way are Yankees; some are Dodgers.

Poem: Meow


























Meow


Morning eyes open
To find, beside my pillow,
A cute cat waiting

Copyright SGW 2008


For the prompt at One Single Impression: Pets.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The way to my heart ...














... I am a coffee ice cream junkie and there is no ice cream better than Days in Ocean Grove, New Jersey. They close each winter and I await Memorial Day each year for this wonderful image. I ate it all!!!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Freedom prompt

I contemplated a haiku for this prompt, but each time my mind began to focus, I drifted back to this poem instead.

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Freedom.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Poem: WHITE House

Throughout this nation's history, White America has struggled to come to grips with its Black population. Our Revolutionary Era focuses on the slaveholders of the South, and how the Declaration of Independence and Constitution had to soften the blow for the southern states in order to keep the Union together. The Missouri Compromise, the Compromise of 1850 and finally the Civil War were all about the North-South divide over slavery and Black oppression. Into the 1950's and 1960's, the racial conflict went on, reaching a crescendo perhaps with the Civil Rights Movement of that time.

Always, the theme has been the same: The North was more progressive and the South filled with hatred. But the only difference between the two regions was style. The South was violent and "in your face." The North was much more subtle. Northerners were "pro-Black," but only if "they (Blacks) stayed in their own neighborhoods" and "knew their place."

Nothing changes. The South and "Heartland" of this country still hold to open hostility with regards to people of color. To many progressives in "Blue" states though, "those people" are, well, still "those people" when they try to reach for prizes deemed more than seems comfortable. Reaching for anything to justify and rationalize the fear, college theses, distant relatives' religious beliefs, a middle name, a preacher, and twisted statements become items of righteous indignation in ways that would be laughed at if the skin had less pigmentation.

This is not about telling you for whom you should vote (although the companion piece does so), but the reasons I keep hearing from too many people regarding their choices don't appear to be about substantive issues in a great many cases, but sound like right wing, FOX Noise concepts that fill me with sadness for how far we still have to go as a nation.

WHITE House


Frightened by what we fear ever knowing
Blindly to hide behind ignorance flowing
Pretend we’re enlightened ‘long as kept at a distance
If he wants any power he will meet with resistance
Cling to the rumors whether false or illusion
Buy all the nonsense if it feeds the delusion
Excuses are easy as they mask what’s in mind
Can’t enlighten a person who by fear is defined

If the image was lighter and the name less unique
Or if we opened our minds and we acted less weak
If we stepped outside smallness to remove its embrace
If it was more about issues and not about race

But it is easy to wallow in mindless portrayal
To sink to the depths of the darkest detail
No matter veracity as we hold to absurd
When the color goes black then all logic gets blurred

Copyright SGW 2008


Please read this poem's companion piece here.

Poem: Whirl

Whirl

Upon reflection
Thoughts run circles around me
And I am dizzy

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Reflecting

Thursday, May 22, 2008

It Turned Blue?

Ok, I am admittedly a Guinness man, but if you need the label on your beer bottle to turn blue for you to know it is ready to drink, well then you are just stupid. That has got to be the dumbest gimmick ever!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Poem: And Frida

See Frida first. This poem is based on my viewing of the Frida Exhibit in Philadelphia in February 2008.

And Frida


As brushes bleed onto canvas
I see what I see as me
Not as you might see me
For of that, I give no quarter
So I paint and I am
Eyebrows connecting and far too full
Darkened moustache crawls along my upper lip
Ugly
For that is what I am inside
Bitter, pained, heartached
That you now can see what I feel
And what I feel, too

Copyright SGW 2008

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Poem: Blanket

Blanket

To lie in the sun
On the first day of springtime;
A reward of peace

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Blanket

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Poem: Oasis

Oasis

Lips are a waste land
Longing for tender droplets
Of one gentle kiss

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Desert

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Racism from people who should know better

I can deal with people who are openly hateful, racist and small-minded. What this election season has taught me, though, is how far we still have to go as a nation. When progressive and highly educated white folks send me E Mails of fear about Michelle Obama's college thesis or Barack Obama's hatred of whites or his being a secret Muslim, I feel a deep sense of pain and sorrow.

I never fully appreciated how many intelligent white people are afraid of blacks.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Poem: Altered

Altered

Said my goodbyes to the words in my head
The rhymes and the reasons long since are dead
Shut out the symphony that played requiem song
Notes that were beating to a man who has gone
Torn down the barricades that blotted the course
Put out to pasture the wounded-leg horse

Banished the victim that sat in the dark
Watched as the wreckage boarded boats to embark
The suicide mission left a corpse of the soul
Bit on the bullet that ate at the hole
As the lyrics are written on the tomb of demise
All the old pieces are broken down lies
Pretend that the missing are remembered in time
They’ve given their speeches and fallen in line

Quiet excursions clear the mind for re-birth
Perspective yields promise of a widening girth
Fed from the blessings at fortitude’s table
Found myself hungry and found myself able

Copyright SGW 2008

Monday, April 21, 2008

My thoughts exactly

Bob Schieffer (CBS newsman):

I watched the ABC debate the other night when the question came up, again, about why Senator Obama doesn't wear a flag pin in his lapel.

Since no one asked me, here's my thought on all that.

I think it is a nice thing if people want to wear a flag on their lapel.

But I believe it more important to keep the flag behind our lapel; in our hearts.

I feel the same way about wearing my religion on my sleeve; it fits better for me on the inside.

When I go to see our local baseball team, I do wear my Washington Nationals baseball cap. But am I less a fan if I don't wear it to work?

The truth is I have been known to wear a red, white and blue, stars and stripes tie on the Fourth of July. Am I less patriotic when I trade it for my Santa Claus tie at Christmas?

Patriotism is no more about signs or pins than religion is about reminding others how pious we think we are.

No, the proof in these puddings is not the signs we wear but how we act.

Wouldn't that also be a better way to judge our presidential candidates than by the jewelry they wear?

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Poem: Poetry's Rainbow

Poetry’s Rainbow

When darkness arrives
Bright colors are discovered
In poetic verse

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Color.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Little Game We Can All Play

Ok, something for you to do before you run to lock your windows, bolt your door and hide under the bed. I have a 71 year old guy who tried to use a child in a sexual performance, a 26 year old stalker and a 36 year old second degree robber in my neighborhood. Yay for me!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Colds and Cats


Is it possible to catch a cold from a cat, or vice versa? We have both been sneezing all weekend.

Poem: Creation

Creation

In completed lines
A poem is granted life
Of glorified form

Copyright SGW 2008

For the prompt at One Single Impression: Glory

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Monday, April 7, 2008

Poem: Another Cinquain

And one more ...

Another Cinquain


Man
Kind, decent
Seeking, hoping, dreaming
With a heartfelt pen
Poet

Copyright SGW 2008

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Poem: A Cinquain

Because I had never heard of cinquains until someone came across my site with that word in their Google search, I thought I should write one.

A Cinquain


Asking
What road
To walk along
With hopes of finding
Sanctuary

Copyright SGW 2008

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Poem: Soothing

Soothing

A million sunshines
Emanate from your laughter
When I can share it

Copyright SGW 2008


For the prompt at One Single Impression: Laughter

Friday, March 28, 2008

My Hometown

I feel like we need one, big community bath here in Freehold Township after having been sullied so.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Poem: Little Things Lost

Anyone who believes the Iraq War can EVER have a positive outcome has bought the Bush/McCain proverbial bridge for sale. Ideally, the only goal can be to get out of Iraq with reasonable speed and undo the damage done by George W. Bush and his crew of foreign policy "experts."

Iraq can never be won because it never should have been a battleground. The real military struggle was in Afghanistan, but a full effort was withheld due to the coming Iraq War. Now the Taliban and al Qaeda are re-forming there.

Iraq can never be won because the original mission was about weapons of mass destruction that never existed. Evidence and words of wisdom were ignored or dismissed because rigid minds were hell-bent on a war built upon false pretense.

Iraq can never be won because a potential real enemy, Iran, has actually been strengthened significantly as a direct result of the Iraq War. The other true enemy, al Qaeda, which never existed within Iraq or in any association with that country, now has a strong presence there in direct relation to our military involvement. Even if al Qaeda were completely wiped out in Iraq, all that would be accomplished would be getting back to Point A there with regards to terrorism. There would be no gain.

Iraq can never be won because it has led indirectly to instability in Pakistan, Gaza, Israel-Palestine negotiations, the Turkish border region, and the U.S. economy via a growing deficit and debt, and $100+ a barrel oil.

Iraq can never be won because eventually we will have to leave, and then civil war between Sunni, Shia and Kurd will begin to bubble with increased energy.

Iraq can never be won with a surge. Military success is limited and fleeting; we cannot surge indefinitely. Political reconciliation has been insignificant. The truth behind decreased violence, which is already reversing in some respects? Al-Sadr's temporary cease fire, Sunni fighting al Qaeda, which began well in advance of the surge, and ethnically cleansed neighborhoods.

Iraq can never be won due to the lost prestige the U.S. has suffered from. The damage to our reputation and world position is overwhelming. Considering that virtually the entire world supported us on September 12, 2001, we have wasted away quite a bit of opportunity.

But, the number one reason Iraq can never be won?

Little Things Lost


Child holds a ball in a field
Nobody else is revealed
Now sits a glove all alone
Daddy is not coming home

Lover can cry every night
Somehow this bed isn’t right
Reach for a body to hold
Half of the sheets are still cold

Wedding band serves to remind
Look to a window resigned
No one will walk through that door
Casualty’s toll of a war

“Dada,” a little girl cries
Unanswered questions of “whys”
Dreams of these lives are the cost
So many little things lost

Copyright SGW 2008

Poem: Fresh

Fresh

Spring comes any day
New beginnings can blossom,
So might today bloom

Copyright SGW 2008


For the prompt at One Single Impression: Spring.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Are we capable of growing?

I received two E Mails a few days ago, forwarded by friends. One claimed Senator Barack Obama (Of course, they add his middle name, Hussein, as if that automatically makes him dirty.) was a Muslim (Interesting, given the nonsense about Obama being responsible for what his Christian minister said a few years ago.). It went on to explain how a Muslim could not be a good American. The other E Mail called Obama a black militant, and referenced his half brother in Kenya (Again, as if that was proof that Obama would basically have whites shot on sight or thrown into pits filled with crocodiles.).

In 1960, people were spreading stories opposing JFK's election to the presidency because he was a Catholic. Some simply hated that in and of itself. Others figured, "Well, he is Catholic, so surely the Pope will decide U.S. policy."

Hell, even war hero Max Cleland, who lost both legs and an arm in Vietnam, lost his Georgia Senate seat in 2002 for being a "bin Laden sympathizer." Pathetic.

In 2004, another war hero, John Kerry, was vilified by a group of liars called Swift Vote Veterans for the Truth. Truth, uh huh.

Is it impossible for any Muslim to be a good American? How sad that some think so. If you take any religion, and apply that belief's book of worship 100%, including Christianity and Judaism, it would be impossible to be a good American. Proof of that is the radical, fundamentalists in this country today who follow their bible with full zeal.

We get E Mails, so whatever is in them must be true. Barack Obama is a Muslim. First, if he was, I could not care less. But, he is unquestionably NOT a Muslim. He is a Christian. Saying his middle name whenever mentioning him does not change that fact.

John McCain fathered a black child according to the Bush campaign in 2000. Untrue, but even those on the right sometime get slimed by ignorance.

Barack Obama is a black militant? Obama is half white! He was raised by his white grandparents. His two books, one written long before he ever likely considered running for office spoke tirelessly of coming together. He has preached that in this campaign. He has been forced to repeatedly fight racism, too, which is what all these Muslim and black militant pieces are about.

Obama's brother, who he does not live with, was not raised or schooled by and has not even lived in close proximity to, has said, " that the black man must 'liberate himself from the poisoning influences of European culture.'" So what. First, there is a great deal of truth in that for many blacks in Africa, a continent that has been brutalized for centuries by European oppression. Of course, that does not justify the violence of blacks themselves in Africa. Second, what one's brother says is in no way indicative of one's self.

Vote for Hillary because you think she would be a better leader and can manage the country more efficiently than Obama. Vote for McCain because you want four more years of Bush's bungled foreign policy and economic incompetence. Don't support Obama for reasons based on reality, the issues and the truth. E Mails of him being a Muslim or a black militant or responsible for people he holds no responsibility for are all about the color of his skin and fear.

I feel so hurt by people believing in the crap being E Mailed and spoken enough to perpetuate it. It makes me feel a sense of loss for a bit of respect for those folks, but also for our country, because I know many are buying into this stuff, when we clearly have a chance to go forward for a change and be more than we've been so far.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Poem: Around Each Other

Around Each Other

I tried to listen
To your language of wisdom,
Wanting me to hear

Copyright SGW 2008


For the prompt at One Single Impression: Circles.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thoughts for today

Thought #1: Why is it that a handful of supporters of two superb presidential candidates find it necessary to speak with such bigoted venom when criticizing the other candidate? President Obama or President Clinton; both have a nice ring. Progressives don't hate like this. Stop it! Leave that stuff to the frightened, small-minded right-wingers.

Thought #2: Am I the only person who finds the Burger King kinda' creepy?

Thought #3: My cat spends his days sleeping, lying in the sun, eating, watching birds, and getting his belly rubbed. Can I be a cat?

Thought #4: If I sleep on my side at night, will all of my worries slip out my ear and go away?

Thought #5: I want a wealthy benefactor for my poetry. Any volunteers?

Thought #6: If Florida can't figure out this voting thing soon, I say we sell them back to Spain. Enough is enough already!

Thought #7: Let's all meet in New York City one Saturday, read poetry to each other in Washington Square Park and then go have a few Guinnesses.

Thought #8: If there was no music in the world, I'd wish for someone to invent it.

Thought #9: We are going to need a helluva' lot of cleaning products (environmentally safe, please) on January 21, 2009. There sure is a huge mess to clean up.

Thought #10: When I get under the covers, the boogieman can't get me. See ya'!

One Day Later Thought #11: I have an incredible craving for ginger bread snaps.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Poem: Barack

No, I am not naive. I realize it takes more than a speech. I think Obama is much more than simply words. He is no less experienced than a former first lady. Nor is he less experienced than someone who has served in the Senate for years and is wrong on Iraq and is a lose cannon on Iran. Abraham Lincoln had less "experience" than Obama. So did Teddy Roosevelt. Andrew Johnson, James Buchanan and Richard Nixon; they had loads of experience. Give me the hope and the ability to affect people. Give me someone who will talk to those on the other side and in other places. Give me fresh ideas. And, yes, give me Barack Hussein Obama, as if a middle name mattered in making him somehow a threat. The time is now, and I see new promise.


Barack

Pretenders speak in forced cliche
Find some words to flip away
Don’t believe that hope exists
Doubts can grow where fears persist

A man steps forth to voice a dream
Change can come with quite the scene
Promise made to reach new height
U.S.A. restored to light

“Yes we can,” the means are laid
Cynics cry and games get played
Tired calls to heed the past
Rise above; “We’re free at last”

Obama brings fresh inspiration
The road can climb new elevations
Vision forms a righteous plan
Conviction builds around the man

Time will tell if we seize the day
A better path, a different way
The “New Frontier” might rise again
Let’s move ahead, not where we’ve been

Beyond today lies shining dawn
With faith and strength a brightening morn
Alarms ring out ‘pon ticking clock
The dye’s been cast; we need Barack

Copyright SGW 2008

Footnotes:
1. “Yes we can:” I use this phrase based on the Obama speech and the will.i.am song. Some claim that Cesar Chavez first used this in 1972.
2. “We’re free at last:” Obviously, this comes from Martin Luther King. My intentions are not to say that Obama is black, so let’s vote for him. Instead, I suggest that new ways, inclusive and of promise, can free us of our divisive and partisan ways. It is, though, a positive that people have a great candidate who is a minority, and appear able to vote for him.
3. “New Frontier:” This refers to the JFK message of the 1960 campaign for the presidency. His was a “New Frontier.” I view Obama’s ideals as being Kennedyesque, and, therefore, a possible second “New Frontier.”

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Poem: Where

Where

This has been the lost time
Spinning, balance has fallen askew
A house of cards in strong winds
With only rotten wood strewn about as foundation
A hollow base that can bare no weight

Where are those I once helped in one way or another?

Too busy
Distracted
Afraid, or missing the words
Promising, with empty intention
But certainly not here

Silence
A clock ticks
House walls creak
Leaves fall and scatter
Remembrances are painful
Baring shattered faith

Where are they all?

Copyright SGW 2007

Poem: Guarantee

Guarantee

With simplicity
Coming from a loving friend
There is assurance


Copyright SGW 2008


For this week's prompt at One Single Impression: Kindness.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Readers' Choice

For my next posted poem, which do you want from the below?

"Little Things Lost" : About the small things lost due to the Iraq War;

"A Cinquain" and "Another Cinquain" : Which are two poems using that form;

"Where" : A sad poem.

I am taking a chance here that someone will actually vote!

Update: Voting has been mixed and light so far, but returns are not in from all districts yet, plus the caucus results need to be accounted for .... what the hell am I talking about!? Too much CNN. Look for the selection Sunday night!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Loving, Texas

Because I am a political junkie, I was checking out the votes by county in Texas. I discovered that Barack Obama won Loving County by a margin of 7 to 5 over Hillary Clinton. That kind me wondering. I read more about Loving here. How cool is it that Texas has a county with 67 people in it as of 2000? I came across another site that had it down to 54 by 2004.

Will Loving disappear from Texas? The county with the first elected female sheriff, Edna Reed Claton Dewees in 1947, can't go under!! See the kind of love they have there!?

Loving, Texas: Got love it!!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Poem: Layers

Layers

The whispers of time
Sweep along cavernous walls
That speak of old days

Copyright SGW 2008


For the One Single Impressions challenge.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Poem: Seuss Love

Seuss Love

I will love you in my heart
I will love you each day I start
I will love you in my car
I will love you from near and far
I will love you as days turn cold
I will love you when I grow old
I will love you as I hold my cats
I will love you while I do “this” and “thats”
I will love you as I watch TV
I will love you if I scrape my knee
I will love you while I’m all alone
I will love you when I’m on the phone
I will love you in the pouring rain
I will love you on a subway train
I will love you once I finish eating
I will love you as I attend a meeting
I will love you if my mail comes
I will love you while an old man hums
I will love you as I sleep at night
I will love you stuck at a traffic light
I will love you in my favorite resting spot
I will love you whether I am well or not
I will love you until the end of time
I will love you through each and every rhyme
I will love you ....

Copyright SGW 1999

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Go for a stroll

I will post a poem in a day or two. For now, go for a walk with Sandy in "Whose Woods These Are" and listen to the music on her site as your do.

You're still here!? Go on!!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Poem: Wandering

Wandering

Worlds outside beckon
Sweet reward of hidden gems
Promise of blessing

Contentment washes
O’er skin that yields to lushness
Of new days in dreams

*Of news in dreams

Copyright SGW 2008

* Footnote: The footnoted line was originally typed in for this poem as the last line. However, based on the confusion in one of the comments to this post, I looked it over and realized a "mistake" from the original, hand-written version. So, the "correct" line now reads: "Of new days in dreams." That said, I am leaving the "mistake" as a footnote that can be substituted. Other comments liked this poem with the "wrong" line, which lends to the idea of the beauty of interpretive art. We, as writers, write what we are thinking or feeling in a given moment. Once those thoughts find their way to the minds of other people, they can be translated into meaning different things. I love that some of my pieces connect with people in ways that were not intended by me. Therefore, for those of you who read this piece with the "wrong" line, clearly the inner workings of my mind as I typed had something going on that I did not know about when writing this poem originally. Enjoy in either form.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Frida Kahlo

Today, I spent an afternoon with my mom and step dad at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. We had tickets for an early viewing of the Frida Kahlo Exhibit. This post is not intended as a review of Kahlo's work, but what it said to me.

Someone with a closed mind would find Frida Kahlo's painting as strange, or they might wonder why she painted herself over and over again. It takes someone willing to stop and really look at, and also to explore, the mind of Frida Kahlo to discover her excellence. In that, I discovered a major component of her work that I related to. For better or worse, many artists, and definitely me as a poet, are caught between two places. The first is centered on our ability to look at the world with a brightness of love, pleasure and wonder. We see color more vividly, hear sounds more precisely and can find vast arrays of texture in every aspect of the world. Kahlo, too, was able to show this through her artistry.

However, many artists, again including myself, feel pain more severely, too. We suffer in the knowing of how good life can be because the glory seems too much beyond our daily lives. Kahlo's pain is crystal clear in most of her self portrait pieces. It is her way of letting people into the sadness of her inner thoughts. I identify with Kahlo in this way, and I believe many, if not most, artists exist in similar fashion.

Over dinner, when discussing Frida Kahlo, I did not mention my thoughts as stated above. My step dad compared me to her, and the duality of both our artistic forms was evident and worth detailing here. I am hoping that my nature to be "cursed" by feeling pain more sharply then most people, combined with the heightened level of joy I can find in places where others do not even hazard to search, will ultimately lead to happiness on a level few could possibly wish for. This life, mine as a poet, has been a battle, and one that has had me on far too many edges. They say "no pain, no gain." Time, and my pen, will tell.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

10 Things I Would Never Say

I've been tagged by Poetikat to come up with 10 things you will never hear me say. Here are mine:

1. Gosh, I so love Oprah Winfrey.
2. President Bush and I agree on that issue.
3. Can I have some peanut butter?
4. Anybody have a smoke?
5. Not now, I am watching Judge Judy!
6. Britney Spears is a talented performer.
7. Gosh, is Dick Cheney ever a warm and sensitive guy!
8. I was working under the hood of my car.
9. I built that device from scratch.
10. Go Yankees!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Poem: Of The Waterfall

I stood on the rocks of Raymondskill Falls in northeastern Pennsylvania, having climbed a fence blocking my way. There I was, alone, only a few feet to the right of the falls below and a simple stone's throw away from the falls in the picture shown. There I stood, with poetry pad, pen and my thoughts. I looked at the amazing power of the falls, and noticed a trickling stream of water along the left-hand side that flowed alone, its own way, until meeting again at the calmed pool of its destiny. And so I wrote ...

* One should read this poem as follows: For verses 1 through 4 and 7 read normally. For verses 5 and 6, alternate lines from the left (metaphor) and the right (literal). Performing this piece requires two people.

Of the Waterfall

Power-filled, majestic waterfall,
Strength built,
In time spilt.

Eroded, beaten rockied walls,
Stripped away,
Years’ decay.

Busied paths, descending bodies,
All as one,
Since dawn’s begun.

Two secluded, gentle streams apart,
Trickle down alone,
Their own path known.


Who I am in truth imparted, ---------Flowing through diverted routes,
This is me,
-------------------------------Slowly strewn,
Least how I see.
--------------------------Paralleled, in tune.

Passing by the beaten track,
----------To be found once more in opened pools,
Quiet defined,
----------------------------Back in whole,
With peace of mind.
---------------------Having served its role.

Replaced to subtly coexist,
No persona lost,
Just water tossed.

Copyright SGW 1997

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Yes We Can



(Play with the streamer a bit if it gets hung up. That seems to happen sometimes.)

It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation.

Yes we can.

It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail toward freedom.

Yes we can.

It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness.

Yes we can.

It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballots; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the Promised Land.

Yes we can to justice and equality.

Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity.

Yes we can heal this nation.

Yes we can repair this world.

Yes we can.

We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.

We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics...they will only grow louder and more dissonant ........... We've been asked to pause for a reality check. We've been warned against offering the people of this nation false hope.

But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

Now the hopes of the little girl who goes to a crumbling school in Dillon are the same as the dreams of the boy who learns on the streets of LA; we will remember that there is something happening in America; that we are not as divided as our politics suggests; that we are one people; we are one nation; and together, we will begin the next great chapter in the American story with three words that will ring from coast to coast; from sea to shining sea --

Yes. We. Can.



Celebrities featured include: Jesse Dylan, Will.i.am, Common, Scarlett Johansson, Tatyana Ali, John Legend, Herbie Hancock, Kate Walsh, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Adam Rodriquez, Kelly Hu, Adam Rodriquez, Amber Valetta, Eric Balfour, Aisha Tyler, Nicole Scherzinger and Nick Cannon