Monday, February 03, 2020

Railing Against the Moon

Sacramento Sky on the Night Kobe Bryant Died, 1/26/20
—Photo by Rhony Bhopla, Sacramento, CA

—Rhony Bhopla

The day you died, the moments after they said you did,
my love told me you are dead. I didn't know

you were dead. But, in your death, I remember you
alive. The moment when you made history as
the first basketball player to make it big time

from high school straight to the NBA. How you
made it all true for kids everywhere, who knew
that college was only going to be a dream. You.

You made a dream for love of bounce, for love
of the richness of sweat and work, the love of
making the odds work for you. You knew that
there were only going to be a few of you.

Those few who show the world that it is possible.
No matter where you live, no matter how dark you
seem to others, you felt the power of dreams and you
flew, nothing less than 30 at a time.

You are dead now, but
we are alive. We know what you meant every time
you flew up to dunk. We know, we know. 

 —Anonymous Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan

—Joseph Nolan

Necessity, with bloodshot eyes,
Peers into the wind.
What most needs doing
Must be done
Over and over again.

Little things
And grand,
Though long since
Lost adventure,
Once more,
Your hand.

You may not relent.
This is necessity.
You must,
Until you’re spent.

Finally accepting
That your fate
Was always planned,
Since long before
The beginning,
Your ending,
Just a cloud—
Carried by the wind.


—Joseph Nolan

I feel
The universe is healing
With a scab
Across our throats,

Since we were those
Who oft
Complained the most,

With constant railing
Against the moon,
The sky and brilliant sun,

And when
The Universe would listen,
It felt
Our fussiness
Should be undone. 

 —Anonymous Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan

—Joseph Nolan

My darling aardvark,
Lived inside his shell
As a peaceful creature,
Who wished the world well.

Hardly bothered
To cast a social spell
And went around in circles,
Listening to bells.

To Armitage,
Seemed so perfect:
The way they’d ring
And ring and ring and ring,

Meant everything to
Since the world was
So full of suffering.


—Joseph Nolan

Have you ever had an inkling
That what is going on
Is just like professional wrestling?

A psychodrama in which
A villain must take a fall? 
Where nothing is real, at all?

In a world of us against them,
Whoever they are?   
Where the plots
Are entirely scripted,
The dialogue,
And the call
For the villain
To eventually lose it!
To fulfill the dramatic brawl?

 —Anonymous Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan

—Joseph Nolan

I tried to draw the river into myself.
I knew it was out there, near me, somewhere.
I tried to feel it and draw it
Toward me, into me, through me,
By imagination and force of will.
I felt a trickle of the river’s flow
Running through my veins
And it changed me.
I knew I was the river
And threw myself in.

 Grooming by Opportunistic Birds in Search of an Easy Meal
—Anonymous Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan

—Caschwa, Sacramento, CA

Modern, computer age formula
takes away the pains
to cover your veins!

spider veins no longer unsightly,
just apply our formula
daily and nightly

never before so wonderfully vague
the World Wide Web
glows brightly on your leg

available in all stores
that carry good stuff
costs everything you have
you just can’t get enough



Things were quite fine as
long as it was just a game
your daddy took out

from the high shelf in
the closet of mysteries
good family fun

but now it’s become
real people seeking to have

rights and privileges,
as if all folks could enjoy
those entitlements

that had been reserved
for a select few persons
like in royalty 

 —Anonymous Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan


when the big text book is
only available in print format,
and the teacher begins the
lesson with a surprise open
book test



when you shake the hand
of a president, or a prime minister,
or a general, or an admiral,
or the CEO of a Fortune 500 company

and then you part hands and
part company, and go back to
your modest means somewhere
buried deep in the fabric of giant
databases and statistical probabilities

where nothing at all has changed


Today’s LittleNip:

because they are handy

because I have a rubber band
gun I built myself last century
that I use to kill flies

because I was influenced by
my Depression Era parents
who saved things, just because

I also save sarcastic barbs…


Another week, and more gratitude to our contributors today: Rhony Bhopla, Caschwa (Carl Schwartz), and Joseph Nolan, who came up with some amazing shots, including—can you tell?—spiders’ feet!

This is a red-hot week in our area for poetry events. So red-hot, in fact, that I’m not going to list them here, but let you 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.

—Medusa, busy knitting booties for tiny spider-feet ~

For more about the aardvark, go to 
Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.