J.P. Celia


Great Galveston of 1900,
the Deadliest Hurricane in US History

“If we could incarcerate… hurricanes for their crimes,
we would build prisons for them as well.”
—Sam Harris,
The Moral Landscape

Great Galveston McNasty
Lit out when opportune.
He got some rhinoplasty
And married a typhoon,

And moved to tiny Huntsville
And changed his name to Breeze.
He worked a farmer’s windmill
And charged the smallest fees.

He had a couple daughters,
A tempest and a storm.
“He never stirred the waters,”
They said. “He fit the norm.”

The FBI was searching.
The FBI was smart.
They caught the bastard perching
Atop an apple cart.

He’s now in Huntsville prison.
I’ve heard he’s changed his ways.
He preaches He has risen
And for good weather prays.

Why You Shouldn’t Ride a Horse

“The Preakness Lives!
(But unfortunately
the horse died)”
—The Star-Ledger

I’m not a damned fanatic.
Some animals aren’t due
Respect that’s democratic.
Don’t read and misconstrue.
But horses, of all creatures,
Are dignified, thus owed
The best of modern features,
Which means we should explode
This unbecoming practice
And strain to be genteel,
Less thoughtless and less tactless.
Let’s end the horse-mobile!
Let’s manumit our stables!
And while we’re at it let’s
Bust other kinds of cables,
Unshackle other pets.
Like—shall I say it?—husbands,
Like—shall I say it?—wives.
There’s vassals by the dozens
Whose bondage yet survives.

J.P. Celia‘s poems have appeared or are forthcoming in such places as Rattle, Barrow Street, First Things, Light, Tar River Poetry, THINK, and The Raintown Review. He is a Pushcart nominee. He lives in Gainesville, Florida.