Something Old, Something New…

It has been a while since I last posted some poetry.  I don’t think of it as my strength and so I push myself to try new things. There are many different forms of poetry: the sonnet, the limerick, and haiku are some. I am not an expert. There are all sorts of meters—iambic pentameter is about the only one that I can dredge up from my days in high school.  When I write poetry it falls into two schools: humorous rhyming verse aimed mostly at children and free form poetry which follows no rhyme nor rhythm. There are lots of rhyming forms and there are non-rhyming forms.  Below is long-ish example of one of my children’s verses, composed over a decade ago, followed by  two short examples of what I think of as free verse. I hope that that they resonate with you or in some way entertain.

The Amazing Talent of Gunther V. Gates

There’s a fix-it man who is rather well known.

He’s Gunther V. Gates from Sierra Leone.

And he can fix everything, ’cept broken hearts,

They’re the one thing for which he doesn’t have parts.

Bring anything else, he’ll make it work better—

Rewire a lamp or mend an old sweater.

And if “tick” is all that you get from your clock

Just take it to Gunther, he’ll put back the “tock.”

A run-down, old mower’s no challenge for him.

Bring it in by eight, get it back before ten.

He fixes steam engines, electric ones too.

He’ll re-weave torn slacks or re-sole a shoe.

If your record turntable no longer turns,

Or your cigarette lighter no longer burns,

And if your good china has several chipped plates,

Then load them all up, take them over to Gates.

And he can do wonders on tarnished old stuff.

He’ll polish your silver, your brass he will buff.

If your car doesn’t run then tow it to him.

I promise that he’ll get it started again.

If the seal on your fridge keeps coming undone,

Your old eight-track player just plays on track one,

And your TV remote just broke late last night,

Then take them to Gates and he’ll set them all right.

And Gunther makes house-calls if that’s what you need.

He’ll paint all your shutters, your lawn he’ll reseed

If you need just one part to fix it yourself

Then Gates probably has it on some dusty shelf.

He’s got buzzers and buttons, switches and springs.

His back room is filled up with all kinds of things.

There are pistons and pulleys, gallons of glue,

And piles of pipe, an odd hose clamp or two.

There are buckets of bolts and sacks filled with screws,

Or nails, hooks, and hinges for you to peruse.

He has dimmers and doorbells, knockers, and knobs.

There’s whatchamacallits and thingamabobs.

So just pick up the phone and give him a ring,

Because Gunther V. Gates can fix everything.

That is, except one, which would be broken hearts.

They’re the one thing for which he doesn’t have parts.

Like Night and Day

I stand at he edge of dusk

Hurling spent lightbulbs toward night.

Enlightenment escapes me until

Morning creeps up to my window

And peeks in.

Losing It

The procession of a silent and unobserved parade

Passes behind littering the past with the unreclaimable.

Expressions and conceits

Are scattered by cold advancing winds

That strip another leaf from the upper boughs

Every day.


5 comments on “Something Old, Something New…

  1. That first poem is fab. Lol. I can picture that in a children’s book for sure. I like your free form especially the first.

    My thoughts on poetry are always that it’s an art form you can usually do. A lot of people say it’s hard, but I consider math hard; poetry requires being able to express feelings or deep abstract thought. It seems to be the only way I can say what I think honestly at least.

    • Thanks for the feedback. I did a whole book of the children’s stuff for my son when he was MUCH younger but never tried to publish them. I enjoy the free verse but I am much less confident about it and don’t really know good from bad. I enjoy writing it so maybe that’s the barometer I should go by.
      BTW I’m with you on the math thing…

      • The good thing about poetry is it’s so personal. Someone could derive their own meaning from the words. No one can tell you it’s good or bad then.

  2. Love your different styles …the first poem was absolutely genius.

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