Site hosted by Build your free website today!


No Messages, Please


Please stop sending me emails that profess your love.

Remembering what we used to have pains me so.

Over the years I had happily come to forget you and

friends either never knew you existed or didn’t care.

Even my psychiatrist stopped asking about you.

So now you come back into my life via the internet

spreading your particular brand of disease again.

I don’t think I can take this ride with you.

Oh, don’t be too offended. It’s been twenty years--

nothing is now the way it was then,

and I have changed so much over time.

Love is the furthest thing from my mind these days

so please, just log off and go away.


Andy Rooney Examines Fear


Let’s examine for a moment, fear--

Some are rational and understandable:

The fear of losing your penis,

especially by means involving a knife.

The fear of accidentally walking

into the women’s restroom and being caught.

The fear of soiling one’s pants

in a public place. An irrational fear would be

the fear of eggplant parmesan Panini.

I happen to like a good Panini.

The fear of faux fur.

The fear of radio waves.

The fear of any particular season

would be debilitating. FDR said we

have nothing to fear but fear itself.

That kind of makes sense

in a very Zen sort of way. The dictionary

states that fear is an unpleasant feeling

of anxiety caused by the presence of danger.

Where is the danger in being a eunuch

or of being publicly embarrassed? Italian

sandwiches, textiles and changes in weather

all appear pretty harmless.

Do we just enjoy being scared?




I always think of you on a barstool at the Eagles

club with a glass of beer in your left hand

and a menthol cigarette in the right,

dress pulled tight over your knees

just like every other lady there:

rides in a carnival.

Later, tearing through town

in your little Rambler coupe,

holding the tip of your smoke

out the window, you told me

you’d quit but you enjoyed it

too much. You were still my heroine.


Grandpa knew about your obsession

but you never let him actually see you.

It was more fun to pretend

that he didn’t know. No amount

of chlorophyll gum could hide the smell

on your breath and your clothes and hair.

Months before you died, when the cancer

ravaged your insides, and the pain medicine

made you a zombie shell of yourself, I remember

sitting on our front porch. You told me

how much you missed your cigarettes,

and if the doctors said you only had two weeks to live,

you would go out and get a carton of cigarettes

and a case of beer.


I often do as you used to:

Sit on the porch swing

on a warm summer evening,

a cigarette dangling between

my lips. I enjoy each drag immensely,

watch the smoke

take a myriad of shapes.


Sometimes in these relaxed moments

you are there beside me on the swing

with your green pack of Salems and your lighter

tucked into your gold lame carrying pouch,

a lipstick stained butt between your

index and middle fingers.



About That Book


These poems were made in China.

Here, look at the back of the book:

Right there under the name and address

of the famous publishing house

with offices in New York, it says it

in the small print: Made In China.


I know it has the name of a popular author

on it’s cover, and even his photo,

but it was ghost-written by two Chinese

poets in a writer’s sweat shop in the

arts district of Hong Kong.


But these guys were lucky. They only had

to write free verse. The less fortunate

work twelve to fourteen hour days

writing sonnets, pantoons and villanelles.

Amnesty International is working hard

to win them the right to create flash

fiction and short stories as we speak.


Anyway, we all know that reading cheap,

inferior Chinese poetry is bad

for the economy. So, remember this

the next time you pick up a new book

of poetry: check out the back cover first,

and read American.