Is the Pope

“Is the Pope Catholic? Does a bear
shit in the woods? Does a mush,
room?” So Matt would ask when
he was sure of something obvious and
thought you should be sure of it too
His life was often one of pain and
despair behind a façade of laughter

Love’s first in ourselves

The knife, so sharp, was strapped
to his leg and he said in that tough
neighborhood they could tell if you
were armed, maybe just by the way
you walked—And they’d leave him
alone, even though he was “screwing
the hottest lady on the block”

You couldn’t blame him, he wasn’t well

It meant something to me when I gave
her a pearl necklace—It didn’t mean
much to her—My parents lightly
scoffed at Unitarians—“They don’t
believe but they want to belong” Later,
Howard joined a similar church where
the flowers we held symbolized loss

Their god, whatever it is, is mysterious

Handel supposedly said, when accused of
outrageous plagiarism, “That pig didn’t
know what to do with such a tune”
A squirrel was sitting on his two hind
legs doing nothing and seemed to enjoy this
fine spring day, just like me, a damned old
fool who first sits still and then quietly sings

My mother prized her fine pearl necklace

A friend of mine, a fellow lawyer, visited when
one of my children was a toddler and the other
was newly born—He brought the newborn a gift
and nothing for the toddler who was quite upset
and boy, was I annoyed, “We’ll bring you something
the next time, buddy” He’s the one who, with his wife
(also a lawyer), built this large suburban house

“We don’t give up on our people,

on a hill and insisted on painting it bright
purplish pink and couldn’t understand why
his neighbors didn’t like it “It looks so
beautiful!!!”—I stumbled and fell
Did anyone stop to help? No
Did anyone laugh at me?  No
Did they even see me fall? 

we don’t stop loving them,  

The birds fought the other day
“Screech, Screech, Screech, and Caw”
I don’t know what they said because I
don’t speak bird—I woke up at 4:45 a.m.
and thought “Oh good, more time to sleep”
Bent over, with a dirty facemask on, she
angrily throws an empty can into the gutter   

not even when they’re burning”

She likes hurting people and instigates violence
She’s weak and scared and she knows it
Violence makes her look strong, she thinks
She loves anal sex for the pain of it
“I’m excited, I’m so excited”
Sometimes this is a cruel,
unjust, strange and unfair world

A thinker and a searcher and a wandering soul   

-June 12, 2021-