A Few Painful Truths

If you are under-challenged
You’ll be called hyperactive

It’s easy to be virtuous
When you are unattractive

When girls think boys are all the same
That’s what they’re sure to find

Since eyes point out instead of in
We’re, all of us, self-blind

Warning: People’s Feelings May Be More Important Than They Appear


Adolescent fantasies?
You say that with a sneer
I’m guessing you don’t know
How gangs arise

For anyone of any age
One thing is very clear
Treat feelings soberly
Or pay the price

1928 Store Window

Atwater Kent Radio Equipment Display
Atwater Kent Radio Equipment Display

A woman I know is ninety-two
When she was six years old
Living in Georgia
The window display above was being seen
In New York City

For the well-to-do
Far from the rural life of the south
Dreams of a wired future
Were on display

Pooley cabinets, normal cabinets
Models 30, 32 and 35
With and without H horns
Were the absolute leading edge of technology

Things far too primitive for us rural-dwellers now
Were once the height
Of urban sophistication

Where There Are No Signs


To drive where I have never been
Without a map or GPS
To find myself on a hidden road
 In some forgotten mountain pass

To skirt the bad times of my life
To glide right by my worst mistakes
To speed to reach my ego’s height
To race downhill without my brakes

To have my thoughts, just like the road
Twist high and low and round and round
To go to where there are no signs
To find whatever can be found

There’s No Accounting For Inspiration

Superman and Cheshire Cat

This is the sight in front of me
Each time I write a poem;
That’s Superman and Cheshire Cat,
But — you already know ’em.

They’ve helped me write three hundred times,
The last time that I checked –
Each time we knock one out, we drink
A cold Doctors-Select.

Now inspiration comes
In many different ways, I feel;
I happen to get most of mine
From Ches, and Man of Steel


What Lila Wrote in Henry’s Yearbook


Henry – all the years I’ve known you
You have been my closest friend,
And through all the high school chaos
I have known I could depend

On your strange, erratic friendship
On the knife edge of your wit
To cut through the vines surrounding
School and life and – all of it

But, sometimes, I know you’re headstrong
And you think your life is set
But I’m sure you have no concept
Who you really are just yet

There’s a loving man inside you
Yes. That’s right. I said, “a man”
You think that there’s something lacking
But there’s not. I know you can

Be whoever you set out to.
Of all this I have no doubt.

your Lila –

who reminds you
That you’ve never asked her out