Tuesday, May 31, 2011

tea, toast, and typing

Tea and toast at 10:47
Tea and toast and typing
The toast is first to go
The tea is next
The timeline for typing
Well that depends on what else I let into my evening
The weather
Tomorrow it will be 91 degrees with
A 60 percent chance of rain
In the afternoon
In the form of thunderstorms
The NBA championships are on tonight too
The television is sleeping with my wife but
I have a history of late night trysts with online radio and
Trysts of every and any kind with
Trysts and toast would make for an entirely different kind of evening
I wonder if the toast would still go first and
Would there be tea and
Would I be done with everything by 10:57
Tea, toasts, trysts and
Probably not
It is past toast
Tea and
10:59 right now

Monday, May 30, 2011

George Washington was a lucky man

George Washington crossed the Delaware
Right about where my son stepped in a big piece of goose poop
He crossed the day after Christmas
So he didn’t have to worry about goose poop
He crossed at night and
Was hoping to attack Trenton before dawn
So he didn’t have to worry about applying sunscreen before he left
He crossed before they designed the American flag
So he didn’t have to worry about breaking the rules and
Flying it the wrong way nor
Did he have to worry about bringing up the fact that there are rules and
Then having to try to explain that to a five year old and a two year old
He even crossed before the interpretive center begun to look run down and
The support for the park began to run out and
The museum had to be moved to a trailer and
Before Muslims, and Mexicans, and Homosexuals
Thought they had rights too and
He never had to live with a black president
George Washington was a lucky man
If he had fathered his own children and
Had a boy
Who was two years old in 1776
He could have brought him across the Delaware if he wanted and
Carried him without fear of getting
Goose poop on his shirt
What a lucky guy!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

The whole world is in your hands

The whole world is
A breast
A bottle
A shoulder
A crib
A blanket
A stuffed turtle
A doll or two or three or four
The first day at school
A painting
A homemade card
A soccer game
This week’s best friend
A summer vacation on the beach
I’d take any of them over
A grocery list or
A rejected report that has to be rewritten or
A room that needs to be painted or
A decision that has to be made about
Cars or
Houses or
Schools or
Circumscion or
Piercing or
The painting of toe nails and the donning of lip stick
I like it when my whole world is the garden
Hands in the dirt
A plan in my mind
And nothing but mosquitos and weeds to worry about
Fighting clover is frustrating but
Not impossible and
Not any harder than having your whole world be
A tenth grade girl or boy
Who is as dependable as a tenth grade girl or boy
Not any harder than choosing where to go when you
First leave your whole world behind
Not any harder than watching your whole world leave you behind
Not really hard at all
Gardening is like a stuffed turtle or
A blanket or
A daddy
It will accept being your whole world
It will happily accept it

Thursday, May 26, 2011


I want to be
What she sees
It’s better than anything I ever envisioned and
Fell short of and
Better than reality
I want to grow towards it
I really want to grow into it but
I also want to be realistic and
Already the time is growing short
This year we planted a garden for the first time
We have
Beans but
No Broccoli
We started too late
She wanted broccoli
I couldn’t deliver
I want to be able to deliver broccoli
I told her I would next year
Next year
She won’t see the same thing
Next year
I’ll be aspiring to something different
This year
I don’t want to plan for next year
I don’t want to plan
I want to be
Whatever she needs me to be

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Forever Young

I watched the video for Jay-Z’s Forever Young on You Tube
With my four …
Wait …
Five year old daughter
It’s been three weeks and
I’m still not used to it
I know
That she won’t be and
That this isn’t a song for a four or five year old but
I want her to hear the music that moves me
Has always done so
All of it
Not just Beethoven and
Bono and the Beatles or
Barry Manilow
Jay has never been my favorite
But even I recognize that she’s not an adult
Yet and
That there is a difference
However fleeting and ephemeral
A difference
A difference between what it will mean to her now and
What it will mean to her later and
What it means to me
Difference can be as great
As spoken word over a great beat
With a familiar melody in the background but
Not quite as great as
Having her in my lap
Looking at me
Eye contact and
Knowing that I am smiling
Self conscious about it too
It and
Ass and
Self conscious and
Happy and
Watching Jay Z’s Forever Young on You Tube
With my five year old daughter on my lap

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Monitoring Morning

Morning still comes
As it seemingly always has
In through the monitor
In stereo or
With the threat of it
This morning it came in with a studious sound
Henry and Mudge and the good Doctor Seuss
A studious sound accented by a playful dialogue with a stuffed turtle
Two days ago it came in an hour earlier
In monaural and
With more anger but
Once a non-cooperative blanket was put in its place
It retreated for a moment or two
Only to come back in stereo
Morning never reveals itself until morning and
Even then you can’t be sure of it
You can never be sure of anything about the morning
Other than the fact that it will come and
For now it comes in through the monitor

Monday, May 23, 2011


I wish I could see more of what isn’t there
Or believe in it
Or at least
I wish I knew
Or what
Jo Jo is
My son talks about him
Or her
Or it
All the time
At least ten times a day
It’s been a week
Since Jo-Jo appeared
He seems to have come back with us from Michigan
Maybe he’s looking for work
Maybe my son was looking for him
If he’s funny enough to justify just half of the laughter that accompanies his name
Then I would want to see him too
I would like to see him
But with dishes and groceries and meals and gardening and
The cat and everyone’s teeth and teaching and sleep
There isn’t enough time for the requisite belief
So I’ll have to rely on faith and love
To laugh at Jo-Jo and
Everything else that the little inhabitants of my house
Can see

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

There will always be weeds

The dandelions seem to be worse than usual this year
But there are always dandelions
There are certainly always dandelions on my lawn
Which may be why my neighbor Marjorie
Offered to let me use her dandelion removal gizmo
It was an attachment for a power drill that she bought on QVC
She had that and an aggressive form of cancer
The last time I saw her she was being loaded into an ambulance
She seemed alert and aware and
She looked right at me
Neither of us said a word
So I don’t know what she was thinking about
But I was thinking about dandelions
Which is funny
Because every time I see dandelions now I think of Marge
I thought of her a lot this year

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The cookie that follows the storm

Calm doesn’t follow storm
Not for me
But rather
Desperation or
For calm or
A rewind button or
The perfect way to say you’re sorry
Which varies from
Eye contact and an apology to
A cookie
That’s what should follow every storm
A cookie

Monday, May 16, 2011

Managing Time

My son has a shortened week and
A vowel like understanding of it
Earthday and
Sometimes poopday
One of my daughter’s dolls has a birthday every Saturday
Sometimes she gets older and
Sometimes she gets younger
The other doll has the same birthday she does
But her age changes randomly and often
I laugh at their naivety and
Then constantly subtract my current age from the average life expectancy of a white American male
While I stress out about whether lunch happens at noon

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Home Again

I’m home again
So don’t tell me I can’t go back
It’s been twenty years
Since my permanent residence was
And this isn’t the first time
And it is always home
Even now
When I have a full house of my own
A home
Which will change
Which will stay the same
Most of the time
I understand
Especially when I’m
Back home

TV and Me

Usually it just
Sometimes it
Sometimes it
More often now than ever before
It’s off

Friday, May 06, 2011

Context is Everything

Context is everything
Two days ago I was working to fix a massive derailment
The trains had run off the tracks near a tunnel
Trains were everywhere
Cars had become tangled up in the wreck as well
Everything had been brought to a standstill
I helped to bring some order to the situationand
Get the trains running again
I was told I did a good job
By my boss
He also called me honey
His exact words were
Good job honey
I laughed and gave him a hug and
Three goldfish crackers

Thursday, May 05, 2011

But you're home all day

But you’re home all day
That’s what they say
When I get defensive over thirty minutes
We were just thirty minutes early and
You were home with them all day
If they don’t actually say it
They think it but
Do they think about
My shower or
Drop off and pick up
The quality time that is
Breakfast and
Complete with
Flying nuggets
Tipping chairs and
Mad dashes to the bathroom
Grocery shopping
Meal preparation
Complete with
Parallel play with pots and pans
At each other
The cat and
Me and
Mad dashes to the bathroom
The part time job
Orchestrated phone calls
Tooth brushing
Toy pick up
The fact that when a thank you, your welcome, or please is forgotten
Receipts, cardboard boxes, rocks, stones, and candy wrappers are hoarded or
A K isn’t connected properly and scissor skills aren’t ready for first grade
You’re all too aware that
They could
At any time
But you’re home all day

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Birthdays Mean Bigger Numbers

Numbers just get bigger
Yesterday four
Today five
A year ago yesterday I could still answer the question
How old is she
By saying three and
And it wasn’t so long ago that I answered in months rather than years
I suppose I still could
If my last math class wasn’t in high school
But it was
Twenty years ago
I wonder if as the numbers get bigger
I’ll be asked the question less often
I wonder if that will make me sad
As so many numbers get bigger
At the same time
The answer for him will soon be three
The answer for me
Is also bigger than it used to be
None of them can start over from zero and
When you do
All over again
The numbers just keep getting bigger

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Tofurkey and Bin Laden

Tofurkey and Bin Laden
This is what I have visited upon my children
By bringing them into the world
What I have given them
GPS and Asthma
A piano in a house with asbestos tiles
Long walks and obscene amounts of toys
At least it wasn’t
A Commodore Vic 20 and a Members Only Jacket
Or the Jackson Five and butterfly collars
Besides you can get Tofurkey for free from ShopRite
If you spend enough money on groceries and
It comes with a vegan chocolate cake
What else is there to say
But to give thanks to God or
Allah or

Monday, May 02, 2011

Staying in touch with the Earth

When I garden
I don’t wear gloves
I like to feel the dirt in my fingers
I need to connect with it
I even spread my mulch by hand
If I can skip using a tool
I do
I can’t help but think that
The more I stay in touch
The longer I can stay away