Monday, March 19, 2018

Winter's Final Picnic

Winter's Final Picnic

Winter set a picnic table
with a sparkling cloth of snow.
But one scruffy squirrel
was the only guest to show.

Squirrel brought his own lunch
packed away in his cheek.
He had a big, black walnut, 
dug up by the creek.

Squirrel gnawed on that nut.
He left shreds of shells all around.
He finished his messy meal.
Then he jumped down to the ground.

Spring came along 
and melted Winter's snow.
She tapped Winter on the shoulder
and motioned for him to go.

Winter grumbled a bit.
He coughed out a chilly breeze.
"Don't push me. I'm going," he bellowed.
"But I'll be back later, and I'll bring a hard freeze!"

Spring smiled and waved goodbye.
She said, "Yes, yes, I'm sure you will."
Then she taught the birds to sing again
and kissed a daffodil.

*     *     *     *     *     *     *

Wishing a happy spring to all of my readers!

Thursday, March 1, 2018

A Sure Sign

A Sure Sign

There are minor signs about.
Birds are singing in the trees.
Warm weather is calling, "Come out!"
Crocuses are buzzing with bees.

But the real sign that spring has arrived
is right here at my feet.
Not much of the road has survived--
just potholes where there ought to be street.

So... I hit a newly-formed crater.
My car lurched and jerked and sighed.
I knew it would happen, sooner or later.
My front tire hit a pothole and died.

Now, I've got a flat, and my axle is bent.
I think I heard laughter from the birds in the air.
My tire hit a pothole, and it's spent!
(Happy Spring to you! Aren't you glad that it's here?)
Well... at least, I do have a spare.

Friday, February 9, 2018

Sounds of Snow

Sounds of Snow

Silence descends
with the snow;
slowly sifts down,
insulates, and muffles.

Boots break the surface 
and crunch
across the icy crust.

Children squeal with delight
as they tumble from their houses.
Triumphant cries of "SNOW DAY!" echo.

Their sled runners slice down the hill.
They groan and huff, 
breathing in the arctic air,
dragging their toboggans,
climbing up to the top for the sole purpose 
of being hurled to the bottom once again.

More grunts and heavy breathing,
while, with soggy mittens,
they roll up snowmen heads and bellies, 
making criss-crossed trails through the yard.

Forts are built, snowball weapons stockpiled,
imaginary war is waged,
with whoops of victory and yelps of surprise
when frozen spheres splat on their intended targets.

Adults and teens groan and grunt,
as shovels bang and scrape
on sidewalks and driveways.
Loads of snow thump to the sides.
Salt pellets from cans and cups rattle down.
Plows rumble and clank over the roads.
Piles of white slush, morph to gray.

Snow melts
back to a muddy silence,
as water drips to the ground
from trees, rooftops, and gutters.
Trickle, glug, gurgle, seep gone.

Thursday, January 25, 2018



Twice daily they pass by:
the scruffy-bearded man with a slouch hat,
and his little dog Fritz, 
who yaps at the stray cat.

Arthritis embers smolder
in both knees and one shoulder.
The old man's stiff walk
is a badge he wears,
for daring to grow older.

Fritz the dog, 
the man's closest friend for years,
wears a tiny, red coat
and a tiny, yarn hat 
with holes knitted in, 
to make room for his ears.

In all but the worst of weather,
they make their way down the street.
The man shuffles and lingers,
the dog stays close,
just to the right of the man's feet.

Each, without the other, would be alone:
the little dog with no one to toss him a bone;
the old man with no pet to settle in his lap.
Together, they retreat from the world,
to catch an afternoon nap.

Twice daily they pass by:
the scruffy-bearded man with a slouch hat,
and his little dog Fritz, 
who yaps at the stray cat.

Sunday, December 31, 2017



Winter is NOT an old man.
He is a toddler 
who stomps around in a bitter mood.
He is a three-year-old throwing a tantrum
after being scolded for misbehaving.
He pitches balls of frigid air that slap faces
and leave cheeks red and stinging.
His fists flail in revolt.
We dodge his repeated blows.
His feet kick up piles of snow
making a mess everywhere.
When you want him to move along,
he flings himself to the ground,
howling and refusing to budge,
as snow swirls about 
and piles up around him.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Winter Waiting

Winter Waiting

Chilled, brisk air 
chases him down the sidewalk 
and follows behind him 
through the door.
He shuts it out quickly.
He shakes bits of snow from his coat
which melt into little puddles 
upon hitting the floor.

He smells chili 
simmering on the stove
and the homemade bread she's baking.
Her welcoming hug and smile
makes him grateful
for a quiet evening at home
 in the making.

Wrapped in an afghan,
watching the flickering fire,
and drinking tea,
they spend their time
reading books, laughing, 
listening to music,
watching TV. 

It's the time of winter waiting.
Waiting for the snow to start.
Waiting for the snow to stop.
Waiting for the snow to melt.

It's the time of winter waiting.
Waiting for the soup to boil.
Waiting for the bread to bake.
Waiting for the new year.
Waiting to see... what cards will be dealt.

The young at heart 
wait for Christmas,
wondering what Santa will bring.
Older folks with aching bones
work jigsaw puzzles 
and wait for spring.

Thursday, November 16, 2017



So the pressure is on. 
It's time to make the Thanksgiving meal.
It must be festive, traditional,
delicious, ideal.

The groceries must be bought.
Recipes gathered up.
The table properly set,
with each plate and cup.

But what if the turkey
refuses to thaw?
What if the oven breaks,
and that bird is still raw?

The stuffing is soggy.
The gravy gets spilled.
The potatoes are lumpy.
No plates are filled.

Take a deep breath
and say a prayer.
Be thankful for blessings;
and for family gathered there.

And when you realize
just how lucky you are,
you'll see it  doesn't matter
if dinner is below par.

Call up the pizza shop
on speed dial,
and dinner will arrive
in a little while.

Don't worry about the food.
Don't stand on ceremony.
Rejoice in your blessings,
and make room for pepperoni!

Even though, at first, 
it can be hard to see.
Remember, remember,
there's always plan B.

*   *  *   *  *

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!