Laundry

Laundry 1
It sits there
the dark and the light
co-mingled
The washer –
tool to rinse away 
all unpleasantness
sits nearby
It does not
load itself

Laundry 2
The stinkiest stuff
often has 
lace and frills
Only the denim stands guard

Laundry
I once had days of the week undies
As the week progressed
the laundry basket collected
the evidence of passing time
A veritable crisis
when Friday disappeared
with the missing socks

Laundry 4
Fuzzmakers appear normal. 
They wriggle into
your laundry basket
generously
giving a little bit of
themselves
to every piece of 
clothing in the dryer

Laundry 5
Wrinkled laundry
Left too long
in the washer or dryer
The sequel could
be better than the original

Laundry 6
Red is always 
a bright color
Hoping to transmit
it’s brilliance to others
it fails only slightly

Laundry 7
Laundry should doubtlessly
be done once a week
when the piles of lights and darks
are sufficient for full loads
Search the closet for volunteers

The first two of these poems were written in a writing circle with Ali Grimshaw (https://flashlightbatteries.blog ). One of the joys of the circle is being able to let ones self out in silly ways. They suggested I needed 7 of them- one for each day of the week. Thank you friends for the permission to be goofy. I love you all.

Encyclopedia

I am not old
But I can see 
the horizon
and the arc 
of the sun 
on it’s 
final fall
I am so grateful
for the days
yet mourn a 
peculiar loss
My summation
will stay with 
me and only
with me
I stood at
my mother’s side
by the stove
pans sizzling
and learned
I have painted trim
with my father
smoothing strokes 
and lines
and learned
And I have done 
oh so many things
and learned
I am a mostly 
an uncatalogued
Encyclopedia
of tips and skills
And now there 
are so many
ways to learn
that I can see
I am not to be 
one of them
One day
these pages
will turn black
You will burn them
the smoke will rise
and all that was learned
all that was written there
will disappear

Soundtracks

Soundtrack 1

Pieces of music spin
in my mind 
The invisible DJ
chooses a tune 
with no announcement
and then does
his best impression 
of Rumplestiltskin
for hours
or even days
leaving the tune to run
as a backdrop
to my breathing
Sometimes
I get to annoy him
by playing tunes
louder than his
A battle to win
the day’s soundtrack
But he has his revenge
Ear worms are his specialty

Soundtrack 2

It’s Union Station
in my head
baggage flying
around juggled by
eager porters
Outings might 
be the worst
My Mom likes to 
tag along
on these trips
She’s long gone
but her voice
is very alive
Train cases
of commentary
Shouldn’t someone 
bathe that dog?
Why would they 
think they could choose 
that to wear?
He should get a haircut
I attempt to squeeze in
a cosmetic tote reply
to her critiques
A reminder 
to be kinder
more accepting
Truth be told
I should cop to 
carrying her luggage
Those leather bags
covered in ugly stickers
never seem 
to wear out
I don’t like people 
to see them
I’d like to leave
these suitcase
soundtracks
on the platform
walk away
OMG those heels
are fabulous

A Proclamation and Pledge

for Those Who Do Not Dance

Awkward people unite!
We hereby proclaim 
that we shall 
not be dancers

We agree to step 
far away from 
the dance floor
We further agree to take 
our two left feet
set ourselves upon
our chairs and
plant those appendages
firmly on the floor

Thereby and thenceforth
we agree to remain 
far away from the temptation
to throw caution to the wind
We take no chance that we 
may become infected
with this annoying
delight in movement
to some intoxicating music
We hold and affirm  
that particular expression
is for other people

With this pledge we
take no risk to 
look foolish 
Those who bask 
in the joy far from
their daily grind clearly
have special talents
not possessed by us

With this proclamation
we shall be free in our 
decision to forever avoid
all such consequences

You may hereby
sign below

The fine print- 
Tapping your toe
under the table
is permitted provided
a room is dark and
no one is looking

This poem was written from the prompt “Dance” by Eugi

https://amanpan.com/2021/04/22/eugis-weekly-prompt-dance-april-22-2021/

As it happens I teach dance and have seen hundreds of people sit in their chairs as they at the same time lean toward the floor and tap their feet. I see the wrestling in their mind as to whether or not to join in. The phrase “Two Left Feet” has become the catch phrase.

Our culture has a strong aversion to embarrassment and this plays out particularly in dance,
The truth is, yes some people learn more easily and dance is not for everyone. And in truth, learning something new is a place where we expose our vulnerabilities. Everything takes time to learn, but the joy in a measure of success is worth it.

We should do more of it.

Produce Nightmares

I looked in horror
across the aisles 
Tragedy was 
everywhere
A bunch
of bananas
were bound 
and gagged with
little stickers across 
their muted mouths
Right next door
the grapes were locked 
inside a plastic bag.
They had provided
air holes, but they 
could not escape
without help
Sweet berries
were caged
lined up in rows
Containment practices
to keep the unruly
from getting away
Tender skinned
zucchini looked no better
Gooey labels marked 
whether they were 
from the 
best crops
The rest 
embarrassed
tried to hide
under the peppers
but it was no use
Everywhere fruits and
vegetables were tagged
and made numbers
Eventually tossed onto
the conveyor and carried out
to an unknown fate

The invention of fruit stickers is undoubtedly a great help to those responsible to quickly identify and ring up vegetables and fruits. B

There is No Moon in the City

The street scape
rises from the 
concrete earth
to castle walls
of glass
The parapets 
surround
roof decks
and metal spires
No soldiers
to keep us in or out
And we flood in
to the castle walls
and flood out when 
we are though 
with it’s pleasures
Or stay with its pains
The birds that 
brightly speak
of an early morn are
drowned out by
trucks carrying 
industry and garbage
The dwellers that stay
speak little to
one another
We here bow to 
the King of proximity
We are all always
going somewhere
hearts carefully 
screened in
disquiet blocked out
The sun chooses 
street sides to find us 
or rebounds off walls
into our windows
And unless you 
happen to catch
it’s spritely aspect
perched on a 
crane
there is no moon 
in the city

Reflections

Subtly shifting 
mirrored glass
Trees upside down
Their counters
point upward
You see the whole
You need not decide
what will be
your reality

Life is not a picture
but a painting
in action 
The end you cannot 
see in entirety 
No perfect image
reflects your paths

Even when you choose
carefully
you may find yourself 
pointing down
or upward 
unexpectedly

The wise will not
reflect on what
might have been
but will decide 
the direction
pointing forward
is best

Note- I struggle with choice. I am the careful chooser, weighing over and over. They say trust your heart. My heart is so embattled that I’m not sure she has my interests “at heart.”

Written from Eugi’s Thursday prompt- today’s is “Reflections past and present” You will find it here. https://amanpan.com/2021/04/15/eugis-weekly-prompt-reflections-april-15-2021/

Poets Rebellion

Poets cheat language
They remove words 
willy-nilly
without regard to
sentence structure, 
grammar
or the reigning rules
of the written word
Their rhyming stymieing 
earthbound mortals
They toss aside
clarity for the 
sake of meaning
and ambush our
senses with 
nuanced realities 
leaving us bewildered
how we got there
They hijack tenses 
for their own use
retaliating against norms
as Kings of purpose
leaving naves
of linguistics loitering
in the shadows
shaking their fists 
Panyasis was a poet
highly revered
in his time
He came to a bad end
Poets, execute that!

Found Things

There is a magic 
to found things
They all have a story
be it great or small
I prefer the objects with 
the great story-
the ones I imagine
could be true
The quarter dropped
from an immigrant pocket
It was the last quarter he had
until he found the job
that he desperately hoped to find
the one no one else wanted
because it meant
he wouldn’t have to go back
Or the train ticket
from points south to Seattle
They called them queer
and weird and wrong
Now they just call them Jo
And finally 
a single red mitten
kind of grubby
She won’t need it
A battle-worn woman
gave her a ride
to a warm building 
where they will 
help her fight
the cataclysmic
forces that have tyrannized
her since she was 15

Each found sidewalk object
the worlds detritus
Stories littering sidewalks
Can you imagine 
these mere scraps 
as lives found, possibilities
found and futures found?