Lake Freezing


Lake Freezing

Earlier, I traveled to Lake Freezing
And dared to stick in my hand
I have heard tales since I was young
Of what the waters there will do to a man:
From the tips of one’s fingers,
The paralysis begins,
Immobilizing the arm up to the shoulder blade
Within seconds, or so they say

I knelt down and took a hard look
At the soft ripples along the surface
Observing fallen leaves and my reflection,
I began to search for the waving of a fish
There was not one, from what I could see
In fact, the only creature I could find
Earlier, in the water of the lake
Was the explorer staring back at me

I extended my arm and felt
The air against my skin
The wintry temperature raised my hairs,
My fingers pointed downward
As my wrist fell fully limp
From my waist, I nudged my arm forward and
Down my hand began to sink
An icy dampness shook my hand
We held there barely long enough to blink

Like a net full of crabs, I hastily withdrew
My hand from the lake
I placed my wet hand in my dry hand
Began investigating whether or not it was awake
Into my palm, my fingers clenched and unclenched;
I could not believe my eyes:
The hand I held was still alive
I raised my fist up to the sky

Z

 

Joy Graveyard

Joy Graveyard

Welcome to Joy Graveyard
Please remove your shoes,
Leave your bag with the guard

Smiling, laughing, or looking happy
Will be punished with utter mortification;
The parts of you unwithered
Will face pure mutilation

  • No candy
  • No colors
  • No friends
  • No anything you really want, really

No use in sniveling, ’twill only
Make it worse!
By the way,
The guard stole the funds
From inside your purse

Better start unpacking
We have stamped your timecard
Make no attempt to break free
From the confines of
Joy Graveyard

Lin

Lin

Followed the road
Along the stream
Although it seemed just like a dream
Maybe I drove around that night
Searching for a clue

Got tangled up for a while
Started acting like a child
The biggest sin I was guilty of
Was being so confused

So, yes, I had to walk the line
This doesn’t happen all the time
But, all I’m saying right now, Lin
It’s better me than you

We drove for days
Or, so it seemed
I realized it was not a dream
And I could go nowhere at all, because
The squeezing really squeezed

Just learn a lesson, so they say
Plenty laughed it off today
They don’t see the person standing
Stands on the rocks, without you

So, yes, I had to walk the line
This doesn’t happen all the time
But, all I’m saying right now, Lin
It’s better me than you

What I’m telling you right now, dear
Do not put on these shoes

Z

Back to the Dogs

Back to the Dogs

It’s back to the dogs for me.
I’m sick of trying to fit in
at this party.
Come here, puppy, set me free,
lick my nose,
I’ll fetch your monkey.
Just the way it used to be.
Everyone, now, walk on by
while I walk a pure doggy.
It’s back to the dogs for me.

Z

Slack Guy

Slack Guy in Charge

The old man reached for the bag
a small hand swiped across paperwork
He snatched the available chips
and slammed a handful inside his mouth:
Salty, fast, and familiar

He knows the taste so well
So, no suprise, his cheeks rise
and the laugh lines deepen
on each side of his lousy lips

The slack guy in charge
takes such pride
in what he knows and he really thinks he
puts forth an effort each day
to make it all better

A splash of ice water to the face is what he needs,
far less chips and some fresh meat
Or, just retire—
What I think

Sunglasses, Please

Sunglasses, Please

Please keep the sunglasses on today
The eyes you have
Have a tendency to cause such trouble.

I can handle your bare hands—
We can go hand-in-hand down the boardwalk,
If you please.

But, please wear dark lenses,
Every time you look my way
Today.

Z

Restlessness

Sometimes, when I wake up at an early hour
(Which, lately, is a large number of times),
I remind myself that
Millions of American adults have trouble sleeping
And that I am not alone.
And sometimes — not every time!
I fall back to sleep.