Sometimes I’ll take time to compose a sentence,
Perhaps pinning words to a swift fleeing thought,
Or maybe because an id-freighted post
Twitted or TikTokked its way to my screen,
And, though but a sentence, it compels me to spend
Long minutes drafting, revising and crafting,
Balancing rhythms and linking up rhymes,
Until, were it laid out in separate lines,
It could be a poem, although it is not:
Just a small contribution to the long conversation
Between myself and the world, or myself and myself,
Uttered half-heard, or, more likely, ignored,
Bearing its dignity into oblivion.
Interesting: the 3rd non-pilot episode of Star Trek: The Original Series (which was the 4th episode aired because the show’s 2nd pilot, “Where No Man Has Gone Before,” was the 3rd episode broadcast) was “The Naked Time,” about a mysterious disease infecting the Enterprise crew. The 3rd episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation was “The Naked Now,” about a mysterious disease infecting the Enterprise crew. The 3rd episode of Star Trek: Strange New Worlds is “Ghosts of Illyria,” about a mysterious disease infecting the Enterprise crew.
I think the Star Trek writers’ room has been preserved in the transporter’s pattern buffer and is being rematerialized for each new Star Trek series set on the Enterprise.
I chased my love away
And made sure she would go
Because I feared the pain of when
She’d go all on her own.
Sumer is icumen in
Rather like Elijah,
That is to say,
Leave the door open,
And set a place,
But don’t get
Your hopes up.
Love may, as though by lightning hit,
Flare bright and shine out briefly,
Or cast its glow, cool and slow,
As by the north lights lit.
But fast or slow,
It still will go
And let the dark back in.
We climb from the solstice
Into clean cold light,
Shedding tarnished tinsel ashes,
Wearing hueless haze,
Awaiting the staining colors
Of the next march of days.
It’s the most wonderful time of the year, featuring the omnipresent background soundtrack of holiday carols that, from sheer repetition, leads me willy-nilly to generate parodic mockeries.
Here are three:
🎵“Good King Wenceslas got high
On coke and pot and acid,
Then he awoke on Christmas morn
He tried to smoke the Christmas tree,
But he couldn’t light it.
Tried to kick the habit but
He just couldn’t fi-ight it!!”🎶
🎵“I polished off a 6-pack of beer,
The chips, dips, and a cheese tray.
And now I’m sprawled face down on the couch,
So I can’t see the walls sway.
My bladder’s full but I can’t get up,
The bathroom seems miles away.
Good will to all who have self-restraint,
But that sure ain’t me today!”🎶
🎵“O! come to our meeting
When we’ll exchange our stories
Of binges and benders
That we can’t quite recall.
Sadly, our families
Remember every detail
Of their humiliation
At our self-degradation
And vows of reparation
That we broke one and all!”🎶
Many years ago, when I first visited my future in-laws over the holidays, I saw that they had set up a small crèche as one of their holiday decorations. I may (or may not) have scandalized them by remarking, “It looks like they’re all saying to each other, ‘I’m not going to change Him; are you?’’’
In any case, flash forward some three decades and I thought that I might attempt a Nativity scene for my sometimes-annual, always-badly-drawn (for I know no other way to draw) holiday card. For its caption I came up with a related baby Jesus poopoo joke, “Gold, frankincense, myrrh…but nobody brought Pampers?” After a few hours work, it was completed.
And then I thought of an edgier caption. Poopoo jokes are always comedy gold, but given our divisive times, this is the caption with which I finally went:
However (and it seems there’s always a “however” in comedy) my pointing out the baby Jesus’ religion made me realize that at the Nativity He was just a few short days from His bris, and that led me to this:
And, if you think that is a far-fetched reason for one of the Three Kings to “traverse afar” to attend the Nativity, you ain’t never heard of the Holy Prepuce!
Time, as we clock it,
Falls back this week:
And the hour hand
As it retreats
Pulls the dawn with it.
Yes, day will come sooner—but its early light
Portends the coming of an earlier night.
The L.A. autumn dances in,
Santa Ana in one hand, fogbank in the other,
Bewildering immigrant trees whose forebears
Had grown in climes more orderly,
Where seasons stepped in stately grace
And not in helter-skelter leaps, pliés, and pirouettes,
Where summer, fall, spring, and all
Fell into line, and winter had a place.