Tom Simard

Poetry, Music, and Prose

Worth a Listen

https://www.npr.org/2018/02/16/586616026/students-who-survived-florida-shooting-want-politicians-to-know-theyre-angry

Yes, I’m for gun control and do think gun advocates misinterpret the 2nd Amendment and are in the pockets (should I say holsters?) of the NRA.  However, more than anything else I would like to lessen the seemingly routine occurences of these bloody spectacles.

These young people have a difficult road ahead, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t try to change things.  Haven’t Mothers Against Drunk Driving made a difference?

Good luck to them.

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Being Poor

“It is not the man who has too little,  but the man who craves more, that is poor.”

Seneca

 

 

Friday’s Choice

Lackeys

 

 

 

 

Bring It Home

Voices

“There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification.”

I Corinthians 14:10

Nobody Knows a Thing (Not Wearing a Stitch)

A Very Merry Christmas!

Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

As you know, the President of the United States is a man of his word (nah, don’t ask what his word is) so he is bound to honor all his promises.

Because I am sympathetic to their plight I really must take exception to the idea that returning to the mines is in anyone’s best interest.  In the U.S. fatalities are way down from what I guess was the peak of 3,242 in 1907. It seems it’s now down to about 20 a year.  Black lung disease is still a problem though.

China (another promise)

is still remarkably accident prone.  In 2013, 1049 people died.  Nothing like the march to progress.

Immortality Sweeps over our Land

 

Despite the pistol he’s carrying, Roy Moore is no straight shooter unlike Girolamo Savonarola.

Since Moore doesn’t seem to believe in much besides self-aggrandizement (just like the president), one can only imagine what he would do if he were put in a position similar to that of Savonarola.

 

 

 

Jerusalem

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!”

Luke 13:34 – KJV

 

 

Saturday’s Choice

Saturday’s Choice

Friday’s Choice

Clearly

“We wish to make it abundantly clear that this is not a military takeover.”

Maj. Gen. Sibusiso Moyo

Wednesday’s Choice

Consider the Sparrow (and Sloth)

Today with the barrage of activity that surrounds us in sensory overload, I think we should also consider the sloth.

 

No Irony Intended

“The homeland will not exist unless corruption is uprooted and the corrupt are held accountable.”

A Saudi Royal Decree

Pterodactyl (5)

Pterodactyl (5)
I rubbed my knee
before lighting up a cigarette.

Taking a long drag,
I let it out,
rat a tat tat
in accompaniment with
the rain
that was coming down
like shrapnel on the roof.

Pterodactyl (4)

Pterodactyl (4)
Clarence
was waiting,
Private Clarence Winters,
drafted like me.

Although we had grown up
in different worlds,
he on the Baltimore streets,
me on a small farm,
neither of us
knew of anyone
with money to speak of,
and we shared a love of
jazz.

But I cannot
go to him,
I have to flee.

Pterodactyl (3c)

Pterodactyl (3c)
He did not listen
as much as speak
and because my mind
has been twirling more
than a bit
I doubt I
picked up much of what he said
but that I face up
and get myself ready.

Pterodactyl (3b)

Pterodactyl (3b)
He had come
to console
because he thought
my time had come.

But I had not
yet given up hope
because Max
knew.

 

 

Pterodactyl (3a)

Pterodactyl (3a)
He didn’t know
the man
who entered his cell
from Adam.

But his clerical collar
identified
why he had come.

Pterodactyl (2c)

Pterodactyl (2c)
It rose and glided off
its enormous wings stretching out,
its beating rhythm
sounding
Max’s fleeing steps.

When he finally arrived
at the old ranch house,
he entered
the screen door
slamming shut.

His grandmother
looking up from the kitchen table
with its plate of sugar cookies
and the drink that she was drinking
with weary eyes
listened.

Pterodactyl (2b)

Pterodactyl (2b)
One day
in his ninth year
as the clouds swirled
above
at a leisurely pace,
he saw something
he could not believe.

 

Aristocratic Ways

“I have seen the young prince,” reported a French diplomat, “walking…preceded by the assassins of his ancestor, surrounded by those of his father and by all appearances, followed by his own.”

From The Romanovs:1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore

 

 

 

Pterodactyl (2a)

Pterodactyl (2a)
Walking home along the river
after Bible class
where he’d heard the story
of a righteous God
who had passed judgment
with the Great Waters,
Max would often see
what at first resembled teetering overturned carts
but were in fact
slot machines thrown in by the mob.

Pterodactyl (1g)

Pterodactyl (1g)
I’ve thought it
over and over again:
Max is my only hope.

The clouds are rolling in
like a pair of thrown dice.

Pterodactyl (1f)

Pterodactyl (1f)
I know
there’s no way
to change what happened.

The man had told us
he had crates of whiskey for sale;
alcohol was hard to get
and we were dying for a taste.

 

 

Pterodactyl (1e)

Pterodactyl (1e)
A tall
pasty-white guard
approaches
his syllables stretch out
as if they were sentences.

“A visitor is coming later,
Winters.”

“Is it Max?

“No name,” he said
looking slightly befuddled
before shuffling off
a heavy rifle resting on
his bony shoulder.

Pterodactyl (1d)

Pterodactyl (1d)
I’m monitored hourly,
but my imprisonment
is not particularly harsh.

Despite the fencing,
it would not have been difficult to escape
but I would never dare
the jungle surrounding all.

Pterodactyl (1c)

Pterodactyl (1c)
My leg
is being eaten away;
my wounds remind me
of this island’s wild terrain

Pterodactyl (1b)

Pterodactyl (1b)
Lying on the ground,
made up of the dead and dying,
I look to the mist
in the high tree tops
as my withering lungs strain.

Pterodactyl (1a)

Pterodactyl (1a)*
Lush green
draping mountain
streams
untamed
flowing rapidly
in deep ravines
where unseen creatures
move
discordantly.

*I am in the process (albeit slow, and to be honest, just begun) of writing a lengthy poem entitled, Pterodactyl. Numbers will indicate parts, letters  stanzas.

Friday’s Choice

“WE WILL VOTE!”

Shocking images..

Days

Days
The pipe-smoking man
on the back cover
spoke of the book
that you read,
whose dusty pages
you poured over,
engrossed as never before
in days
that found their own purpose.

Embodiments

Embodiments
To see the future
clear and not
a blur
of known
uncertainties,
grasping
colossal embodiments.

September 21, 2017

September 21, 2017
Breathe in
the divine scent
of lilies
on which
raindrops
flutter
like the wings of a sparrow
and consider.

Hurricane Irma

I don’t understand the point of weather forecasters doing their report from outside so you can imagine my complete bafflement when they do so when the wind is so strong that unless they hold onto an object or to each other they’ll be blown off. Downright irresponsible I’d say.

Hope all of you in Florida have found safety.

Friday’s Choice

Friday’s Choice

Sinking

Sinking
A sinking feeling
you can’t quite place
that rises to take control
of a single thought
you can’t shake loose
that holds you captive in its powers.

Empty Threats

From what I can gather from his fire and fury comments, unlikely to have originated from him considering his lack of any interest in anything besides his inflated ego and their eerie resemblance to Harry Truman’s after dropping the bomb on Hiroshima, Trump finds it necessary to show the North Korean how strong he is.

Maybe it’s only a matter of time before pictures of him like this appear:

His supposedly great negotiation skills all seem to consist of making threats, many if not all of which seem to be empty.

Ninotchka

For those who haven’t yet seen it, please do. You’ll not be disappointed:

Of Weathermen and Parking Meters

I saw one of those online quizzes recently that are supposedly able to tell one whether you’re a leader or a follower.  Although I didn’t take it, I suppose it’s an Either/Or.  Maybe that’s what I hate so much about application forms or fast food restaurants (don’t even get me started about standing in line as a boy because I wanted a quarter pounder and cheese only with the hamburger and cheese), lack of nuance.

On the subject, the following always comes to mind:

“Suppose it were the life-view of a religiously existing subject that one must not have a disciple, that this is treason to both God and men; suppose he were also a little foolish (for if it takes a little more than mere honesty to make one’s way in the world, then stupidity is always necessary for real success and to have many properly understand you) and said this directly, with unction and pathos, what then? Well, yes, he would indeed be understood. Soon ten would apply, asking to be engaged just for a free shave once a week to preach this doctrine; i.e., and as further confirmation of the doctrine’s truth, he would have had the extraordinary good luck to acquire disciples who accepted and spread this teaching about having no disciples.”
Soren Kierkegaard – Concluding Unscientific Postscript

A Seal

A Seal
Church bells toll
like a Roman soldier’s hammering.

The ring you kissed
swirls forever
in the sea.

Joined forever
on the anvil
a seal as strong as death.

Silence

Silence
After an eternity
of silence,
the seagull
perched on the cross,
squawks to the blue breeze
in the searing sun
its sorrow.

Love

Love
Light that slips through
the curtains at night
that appears
vibrating
beneath the sea’s shallow depths
as a series
of intersecting frames.

God Save the Queen

God Save the Queen
The first time you met
at the bus stop,
he acted as if he knew you
and when you asked,
“Have we met?”
he responded,
“I just introduced myself.”

As he began to expound
on his admiration for all things English,
you understood he’d mistaken your language
for your country,
and you let it slide,
not dispelling the illusions he held
with a reference to Cromwell.

Throughout the years
you’d run into him on occasion,
but definitely not one
you’d expect to engage
in a conversation that played by rules
you’d understand.

Now after years,
you saw him,
and reflected how age
seems to take its toll on some
and not so much on others.
He was sitting at a café,
gray stubble covering his face,
and as you passed,
you swore you heard him mutter,
“God Save the Queen.”

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