Monday, November 11, 2019

Poetry And Old Drawers

—Photos by Caschwa, Sacramento, CA


Still have the old 7-drawer wooden desk
that my dad got for me unfinished
and we worked on it together to
apply some kind of protective coating
which had a name I didn’t keep

all of the drawers of that desk now
mimic the contents of Egyptian pyramids
which contain one, once-important figure
accompanied by all kinds of lesser regarded
accessories and accoutrements galore

all through the house we have little tombs like
that in other desks, kitchen drawers, an open
box on the table by the patio door, that shoe
bin in the front hall which was cleverly designed
to include 3 sliding drawers

and pretty much the whole backyard shed



(taken from the artful word picture
painted by James Lee Jobe,
Medusa’s Kitchen, 11/09/19)

unsuspecting victims

Oceans of spilled blood
lotions derived from mud
the infamous war infraction
broken bones, put in traction

injured and fading fast

endless battlefield scars
rumpled, crumpled cars
on their daily commute
no gun in their boot

it’s all about the money

boards of directors
hoards of inspectors
uninformed hired hands
uniformed marching bands

proudly serving an experiment

can we eliminate all royal
and still keep enough loyal?
here’s to what our country is:
another round of pop and fizz! 


Professor I. M. Smart, MML, DTA

Been there, done that
don’t tell me, I already know
head won’t fit hat
I set which way the wind will blow

so-called experts
have fooled us forever so long
laugh till it hurts
knowing all that they say is wrong

the media
rewards acts that sell time on air
pure tedia
to figure what in fact is fair

just because the
Speaker of the House has said so
doesn’t reach me
I stomp my foot and stop the flow

(MML, DTA: Mild Memory Loss, Due To Aging)



One thing they are pushing is
a remedy for bipolar depression

best I can figure is there are
bi-sexual polar bears who get
depressed and will do just about
anything in that cold environment
to get warm

they also speak of new McCockle
ammonia, but I trend toward the
more classical old McCockle


Ten thousand households
denied electricity
for a day or two

because of strong winds
The Charge of the Light Brigade
cannot occur here

how so ironic
power shut off due to wind
that helps the turbines

generate power
far too dangerous to bear
heat, fire, roaring glare

perishables lost
including some medicines
so adjust we must



I have grown
from what I’ve known

Lah Dih Dah

perfectionist folks
wrong time for jokes

Lah Dih Dah

college degree
now whatch’a awanna be?

Lah Dih Dah

Ass Burgers Syndrome
stuck like hairs in my comb

Lah Dih Dah

that cancerous tumor
of insolence and rumor

Lah Dih Dah

carefully planted a seed
probably just a weed

Lah Dih Dah

—Joseph Nolan, Stockton, CA

In the drawers of old desks
We find the memories of pens:
Letters to write,
Seem to take forever
Or maybe never.

Pens from old hotels
We hardly can remember;
Were we there
To celebrate,
To graduate
Or congregate?
Was it in September
Or December?

The memories of pens,
No soirees spreading ink
Upon smooth paper,

The lines un-writ,
The lack of wit,
The normative evaporation
Of liquid over time,
The ink, run dry.

Oh, why?
So many years
Just lurking in this drawer!
What was it for?


—Joseph Nolan

Do flowers smell the bees?
Love their furry bodies
Lighting on their leaves?

Love their tender touch
Quiver with their humming,
And go all limp
With their petals’ strumming?

Bees are much like boys
Treating tender flowers
As their toys—
Play a little while
Then fly away,
Off unto another flower
All the live-long day.

—Joseph Nolan

We have all watched
Cracks in walls grow larger,
Grow longer,
As the Empire crumbled.

We can feel something coming,
Something we wish wouldn’t.

The madness of Caligula,
The indifference of Nero,
These are all cliches
Compared to the lack of taste
We see these days.


—Joseph Nolan

“Your balls are going to hurt.
You will see many doctors
For this condition,
But none will be able to help.

This will go on for many years,
The misery it will cause you
Exceeding all of your fears.

Some will say that your balls don’t hurt,
That it’s really all in your head,
That you need to talk to a shrink
About how you wanted your Daddy, dead.

Your balls are going to hurt;
You know what this is for:
Something that will punish you
For wanting to shtoop a whore.”

—Joseph Nolan
I’m waiting for my government check.
I know I need the money,
But I don’t get no respect.

I’m sitting out here in the sun
I don’t got a roof o’er me.
It’s ‘cuz I never won.

I ain’t won yet,
And maybe, never will.


Today’s LittleNip:


Whatever trouble you’re in
from accident or from sin

your best ally will appear
if you summon Wes Q. Geer


Good morning and thank-you to Caschwa (Carl Schwartz) and Joseph Nolan for steering the Kitchen through Veteran’s Day with their poems and Carl’s photos of our riparian habitat. Both of them had poems based on our Seed of the Week, “In the Drawers of Old Desks”.

Joseph reminds us that MoST (Modesto-Stanislaus Poetry Center) has a Poetry on Sunday series which meets at the Carnegie Arts Center, 250 N. Broadway Ave. in Turlock. Their next meeting will be Dec. 1 at 2pm, featuring Lee Herrick, Zaid Shlah, and Ash Young plus open mic. Free!

MoST also has a Second Tuesday poetry reading at the Barkin’ Dog Grill, 940 11th St. in Modesto; their next meeting is this Tuesday (11/12) at 6pm and will feature Francesca Bell and Rosa Lane plus open mic. For more about MoST poetry, go to

Poetry events in our area begin tonight at 7:30pm at Sac. Poetry Center, with D.A. Powell (NOT Danyen Powell) and Marcelo Hernandez Castillo reading, plus open mic. On Tuesday, Cal. Lawyers for the Arts will give a presentation on “Best Practices for an ARTREPRENEUR” at Sierra 2 Center for the Arts and Community on 24th St., 6:30-8pm. There is a fee, so be sure to register at

On Wednesday, it’s time for a Poetry Off-the-Shelves read-around in Placerville at the El Dorado County Library on Fair Lane, 5pm. Then on Thursday at 11:30am, Sue Daly facilitates Wellspring Women’s Writing Group at the Wellspring Women’s Center on 4th Avenue. Also on Thursday, Poetry Unplugged at Luna’s Cafe and Juice Bar on 16th St. in Sacramento hosts Leonard Germinara at 8pm, plus open mic.

And Friday at 7:30 in Davis, The Other Voice presents UCD Professor Emeritus Charles Halsted plus open mic at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Davis on Patwin Rd. Scroll down to the blue column (under the green column at the right) for info about these and other upcoming poetry events in our area—and note that more may be added at the last minute.

Interested in more workshops? Check the green box at the right for a listing of local ones which will be held this week and/or later.

—Medusa, rooting around in her old drawers for more poetry ~

Poetry Reading
 —Anonymous Photo

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