Poems of the Week

Exotic Fantasies

by Pat D’Amico

Oh, how I miss Trader Joe’s,
And Safeway would make my heart swell.
I would love to peruse all the aisles
Of my local Home Depot as well.
But since I am into my eighties,
These lavish forays I’ll forgo
As I wait for the shot to release me
From this son-of-a [bleep] status quo.

Rude Awakening

by Nora Jay

“Rudy Giuliani appears to sweat hair dye as he makes election claims”
The Telegraph

With posture of bat and malevolent mewl,
Our Rudy’s well known as both vampire and ghoul;
But still it’s a shock (one that can’t be denied)
To find he’s not only Undead but Undyed.

Three-Fingered Giuliani

by David Hedges

Some twenty thousand daily
Keeps Rudy quibbling gayly,
Exceeding even Kayleigh.

He loves My Cousin Vinny,
The courtroom scene wherein he
Sinks to ignominy.

He’s better cast as Bonnie,
With Clyde portrayed by Donnie—
Two pawns of Q-Anony.

A Remembered Swan

by Julia Griffin

“Former Ballerina with Alzheimer’s is able to remember her old dance routine when she hears ‘Swan Lake'”
Yahoo! News

(with apologies to Yeats)

A sudden glow: the hollowed arms upswept
Above the wandering head, the starry burst
Streaking the dark. The cobwebbed feet have kept
Their knowledge, not their power: she was cursed,

Long since, this maimed princess. A crueller stroke
Than Rothbart’s holds her caged, blots out her sky;
How can frail forelimbs beat away his smoke?
How can a grounded spirit hope to fly

Back to its Lake?—except that something strange
Still beats in her, beneath her parchy skin:
A memory.
Among art’s kindlier things,
This timelessness, created out of change:
A ballerina, spotlit from within,
Trailing her lovely, half-extended wings.

Etiolation

by Dan Campion

“Facing collapse, the famed Arecibo Observatory will be demolished”
The Verge

Our infrastructure’s not alone;
SETI’s, too, is failing.
They’ve even lost the dial tone
Of ETs out there hailing.

VatiCan-Can

by Iris Herriot

“The Vatican said it was seeking explanations from Instagram after Pope Francis’s official account
liked a photo of a scantily dressed Brazilian model.”

The Guardian

(with apologies to Rogers and Hammerstein)

Models displayed over Buzzfeed and Twitter,
Costumed in little but stockings and glitter,
Braless Brazilians in shoes heeled with spikes:
These are some things that His Holiness likes.

Monsignori
May show fury
(As no churchman should),

Shouting Anathema! Obstat! or Yikes!
The Pope’s never felt so good.

By The Same Tolkien

by Alex Steelsmith

“‘The Nature of Middle-earth, a collection of previously unpublished J.R.R. Tolkien essays…
will be released by HarperCollins in June 2021.’ … The topics [include] ‘Elvish immortality
and reincarnation.'”

lithub.com

Higgledy-hobbity,
J.R.R. Tolkien
soon will reveal how the
soul of an elf,

being immortal and
reincarnational,
always returns—like the
author himself.

Webster and Wang

by Mike Mesterton-Gibbons

“Emily W. Murphy is hearing from Americans demanding she do her job. There’s just one problem:
She’s not that Emily W. Murphy. … It seems ordinary Americans had identified her as the Emily W.
Murphy appointed by President Trump as head of the General Services Administration, who has
infuriated many with her refusal to sign documents declaring Joe Biden as the apparent winner
of the presidential election.”

—The Washington Post

We differ but we seem to be the same:
Each one’s a Murphy, Emily as well.
But if, in full, you write the middle name,
Such sameness is so easy to dispel…
Though if a W is all you see,
Especially if photos aren’t supplied,
Regrettably, you think that I am she
And send me pens, and though I’m on your side,
No power to use pens at GSA
Do I yet have. But if pens come in tens,
Would you please send, not Bics, but Cartier
Authentic gold and diamond fountain pens?…
No help to Joe’s transition could I be—
Gold would, however, help transition me!

Kayleigh Kan’t Kount

by Brian Allgar

“AMAZING! More than one MILLION marchers for President Trump descend on the swamp in support”
—Kayleigh McEnany on Twitter

Once more, inanely, McEnany’s blundered.
Her claim: “More than one MILLION marchers” went.
In fact, eleven thousand and six hundred—
She only lied by 99%.

Gobble Gobble 2020

by Jane Blanchard

“CDC Recommends Against Thanksgiving Travel”
Simple Flying

Turkey’s roasting in the oven –
Dressing’s ready for the same –
Once the former’s on the platter –
Eating both will be our aim –

Plus these greens and those potatoes –
Cranberries preserved by you –
My pecan squares – baked and waiting –
All in all too much for two –

The DTs

by Brendan Beary

Come on—go gentle into that good night;
Don’t claim you were the victim of a fix.
The votes are in. Admit you lost the fight.

Insisting you’ve prevailed? Ha-ha, not quite.
Although there were some states still in the mix—
Uncertainties upon election night—

They’ve been decided, most of them, despite
Your lawyers’ lame attempts to eighty-six
The Constitution. They can’t win this fight.

Your petulance and pettiness and spite
May help you win retweets and likes and clicks;
The tirades lasting long into the night

May serve to whet your base’s appetite,
But it’s no substitute for politics.
The votes are counted now. You lost the fight.

We’re sick and bloody tired of this, all right?
Denial, obstinacy, dirty tricks,
Like “loser” is a fate you have to fight?
Do not. Go gentle into that. Good night.

Goose Bumps

by Nora Jay

“Donald Trump attacks Fox News: ‘They forgot the Golden Goose'”
The Guardian

O who could forget the Golden Goose,
The farmyard’s shiniest fowl,
With his jabbing claws and his beak of puce
And his hiss that’s more of a yowl?

O shame to the Fox that scorned the Goose,
The best that bank ever rolled,
And cut his cackle and cast him loose
With his plumes still glitzy as gold!

The Restorer’s Retort

by Dan Campion

“Behold The ‘Potato Head’ Of Palencia, Another Botched Art Restoration In Spain”
NPR

To those who say the lady’s face,
Once bland, now looks grotesque,
I say: Behold her impish grace
Revealed, Picasso-esque!

Categorical Blank

by Iris Herriot

“Alex Trebek, Longtime Host of ‘Jeopardy!,’ Dies at 80″
The New York Times

What’s saving our evenings from wreck?
What’s keeping sore spouses in check?
What’s soothing to see now?
What’s nice on TV now?
What’s Jeopardy minus Trebek?

Breath of Fresh Ayr

by Julia Griffin

“South Ayrshire Golf club owner loses 2020 presidential election”
Ayrshire Daily News

The golfers round the town of Ayr
Are always absolutely fayr:
Accordingly, when they declayr
A round is done, it is. So thayr.