Eulogy for Floyd

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4.25 Eulogy for Floyd

Light the matchstick torches!
Bang the Hollow Cans!
For Floyd the King of Rats is dead
At the hands of the humans!

I’ll tell you my friends about dear Floyd
Who was smarter than a cat
And just as big in size
His coat was lustrous, thick, and grey
He had bright brown beady eyes
The glue traps never stopped him
Though they ripped out belly fur
He ate the cheese off snapping traps
He hissed at all the curs

Light the matchstick torches!
Huddle in the night!
For Floyd the greatest rat is dead
He put up such a fight

My fellow rats are sad this day
For Floyd finally succumbed
To the cruelest of temptations
To the smallest of the crumbs
While sniffing bones left in the sun
He met his tragic end
As with a snap the lights went out
In those beautiful brown eyes
And so was Floyd undone

Light the matchstick torches!
We’ll have a garbage wake
In honor of our leader Floyd
Who made one big mistake!

****

Yeah, our apartment building has rats. One rat in particular, sometimes seen but not caught until recently, stood out for me.

I stuffed a plastic bag into the hole in the wall – it disappeared.
I glued a bean can lid to the hole – it eventually got pushed off
I laid down a glue trap – it got pushed away from the hole
I laid down a snap trap with cheese – the cheese disappeared off the un-sprung trap
I cleverly put a large glue trap in his “bathroom” (my unused guest vanity drawer) – he pulled himself free, leaving behind a bunch of soft belly fur.

I mean, I have to give Floyd credit – he really played a good game. I caught four other rats before the guards finally caught Floyd. As big as a big cat, according to my neighbor…poor Floyd. You were a worthy, disgusting opponent.

Cheers.

I Cannot find a rhythm in the day

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4.12 I cannot find the rhythm in the day (A sonnet)

I cannot find a rhythm in the day
As gentle fingers probe along my skin
To coax the rotting problem on its way
I cannot stand outside and reach within.
A tiny discontented grain of thought
As light as finches dancing on a bough
Is traipsing through where it should not
And leaving little cracks along the brow.
Now blood does not move merry in the vein
Pulsing angrily beneath the eyes
My fingertips work circles, but in vain
Then defeated reach out for supplies.
When headaches think they’ve just secured the win
That the is the time to take the aspirin.

****

4.13

I can hear the busker approach across the sand
I’ve heard his tinkering from up the hill
And prayed he was luncheon entertainment only.
Sadly, he parks next to our umbrella
And starts to sing
Bienvenue, bienvenue
Bienvenue a Guinee

I want to be lulled to rest by the crashing incoming tide
Not by an improvisational musician
Bienvenue a Guinee
Bienvenue a la plage

It’s not an unpleasant sound, the guitar
Metal picks suspended over a gourd-like belly
Bienvenue a la plage
La plage est jolie-eh-eh

But it’s tin whistle plinking
Plink, plunk, plink, plunk
Bienvenue Monsier
Bienvenue Madame

I sit up abruptly and shove money at him
It disappears instantly and slyly into that big-bellied instrument
Merci, merci Madame
Bienvenue, bienvenue….

Empty Space / Love and Bouldering

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4.10 Empty Space

The empty space inside my head
Is vast, but ever shrinking
I find I bring my focus back
With patient, conscious thinking

Or else I stare at something bland
And let my hands meander
Perhaps they’ll write a shiny phrase
And my brain will take a gander.

I haven’t looked down at the keys
Which I know sounds most outlandish
Would you be kind enough to look
In case there’s something I accomplished?

****

4.11 Love and Bouldering

If I’m a bucket
You’re a crimp
We make an interesting climb
I’ll take your arms
You’ll need my fingers
We’ll make it up just fine
I’ll hold your feet
You take my toes
While we’re both in our prime
And when we’re up
We’ll trace back down
Let’s chalk it up to time

****

Throw down a little Salt

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I cannot imagine new tenants walking backwards up the stairs,
Throwing down a little salt because they read it in a book.
They must not check over their shoulders,
Nor hunch their shoulders up around their necks for protection.
Poor dark things, menacing an empty room,
I worry for you.
Who feeds you now?
Do you skitter amid the boxes, looking for me and my vivid imagination?
Do you still dance as I imagined?
Not that I could bear to witness.
I could not stand the darkness.
Perhaps now…but would you want me now, full of worldly fears?
Or would I taste too leathery, to tough even for your needle teeth?
Check on them, if you would.
Under the stairs, behind the boxes of forgotten books, or in shadows of the old art projects.
Throw down a little salt.
For my lonely living shadows.

In the Stillness / Climb

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In the Stillness

In the stillness of an early morning pre-sun
One eye opens halfway
To ensure you are still there
Resting as you were the night before
Sleep smoothing life’s tensions
Limbs bent and wrapped around the blankets
One eye opens halfway
Ensuring I am still here
Resting next to you
Undiminished and whole
Before the demands of the waking sun
Remove us both
Both eyes shut
In the stillness of an early morning pre-sun

Climb

I told my muscles, “Upward!”
They responded, “Not inclined.”
I chuckled and climbed.

Not far, I promised
When muscles asked for rest
That was just the first crest.

Second ridge was harder
Nothing but stairs into the stone
Muscles took accusing tone.

Pushed us further onward
So close to the peak
Muscles cried out, “We are weak!”

I cheered them “You are strong!”
We hit the top
And had to stop.

Then the horrid moment
Muscles shaking, scared and bent
Contemplating the descent.

Upward, I had cried
Muscles knew from town
What goes up, must come down.

Muscles win the argument
Once I’m soaking in the bath
Facing their knotted wrath

They don’t know my plan
Of going out with a friend
And climbing next weekend.