Tag Archives: whimsical poem

I Do Not Like Worms

To believe the town, its rushing waters bleeding by,
sending its age and newness to other ways beyond,
wherever that is, that long away place which kept
all my lost bobbers and broken lines with hooks –
Down in the down by – this – or the other – that,
it could be – if found with a thousand catfish –
certainly – learning to eat with hooks stuck in
their throats like baseball cards in bicycle wheels –
swimming by with ten feet of trailing nylon line –
broken off in the heat of battle!
“Tic tic tic tic tic tic tic tic tic” – as the
worms go sloshing down –   the wheel goes round –
flicking away time – along with flecks of Pete
Rose, left on the long ago ground.
That long ago ground –
who once endured the steps of soldiers north,
and soldiers south soon behind them – tossing
cannon balls and musket balls into her
swallowing mouth – devouring our time and
little flecks of Pete Rose and posing with
them, mother earth – hiding them –
turning them back into worms.
I watch them all from my point below the stars,
wondering how many worms might come from cannon balls.
And crescent moon never falls, never falls into
earth’s gaping mouth.  Only shines to watch the
night crawlers come out from deep within – some
smelling like musket balls and tonic and gin,
cigarettes and nasty-nasty…  Oh how the worms
have seen us all, silently waiting for us to fall.
And we will.  Flecks of Pete Rose and all.

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© 2015 John Allen Richter
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Prim and Proper Buts and Participles

I think it shall be called –
How to make a poem float,
by the incomparable and always
dry – master of ceremonies.

Float, float, poem,
when I let you go down the stream…
flurry your seams with resin
as you dodge chunks of misused grammar
and scopes from submarines.

Submarines, submarines,
always on the prowl –
always checking for those prim
and proper participles…
always sifting through
rhododendrons on the murky
river floor….  Dying, of
course.  Too much water
for them, just moist to the
touch – when not covered in
several tons of carp waste..
You thought I said crap-waste,
didn’t you?  Dirty little
peeping eyes…

“Rhododendrons don’t live in water,”
nor do they concur with proper
nouns and adjectives –
itself’s very spelling a mystery to the rules.
“The poem can not float!”
“The poem can not float!”
Screamed the ring master…
“Remember your rules of threes!”
but can only remember Sister Collette
trying to beat them into me.
“One! Two! Three!
You little rule breaking bastard!”
“Listen boy or your poems will never float!”

But dead rhododendron leaves
replaces rules of threes.
That’s why I sighed, and cackled loudly,
when I threw them in the river.
They make my my poems float.
With all their ‘wuzzins’ and reasons
to start sentences with “But…”
and made-up words that can sometimes –
tickle imaginations…

And apostrophes don’t count –
when you only hear them –
because they sigh very quietly.
And rhododendrons are much prettier…
than they spell.
You thought I was going to say –
smell – didn’t you?
Silly peeping eyes –
you can’t smell them under water…

Float little poem, float.
But I can’t.
But you will.
But I shouldn’t.
But, and yet, you will.
Float, float, poem… Please?

Psssstttt….  You’re making me look bad…

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© 2015 John Allen Richter
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