Wednesday, June 26, 2024

Muggins & The Fog Man

 —Poetry by Michael Lee Johnson,
Downers Grove, IL
—Public Domain Visuals Courtesy
of Michael Lee Johnson

Tired of hunger
tired of emptiness
late February winter snow—
crow claws locked in
on my condo balcony
steel railings.
Their desperate eyes
focus in on my green eye
their search begins,
I go to bed, no ruffled feathers showing—
their imaginary dreams of green—
black wings fly flapping—
the hunt, scavengers, over barren fields—
shadows in the way
now late August
summer sun
bright yellow
turning orange—
hard corn.

There is a stranger in the fog
screaming into this harbor tonight.
A lonely son-of-a-bitch without
a mother or a lover.
He screams obscenities
with bad breath.
There is a way the moon
investigates a sailor in fog
at night, sheltering no one.
Hungover in the lead piping
suffering from myopia
but downing in pride,
hyperopia magnified.
These memories are distant.
A lady now of a dream
still walker on sliding sand
near that beach, leaving
sounds of her own
where winds tell the
fog man where to cry.
Life a saint in blue mist
a roller coaster, thrill
master-slave driver
of its own.


This version
is tacitly the best.
I am in the morning sun
when the artist arrives.
My pair of pajamas
sleep in frozen-still patterns.
I turn my face oriental with my poems.
Cherry blossoms, I turn inside out
light pink to white, brevity, for a short
time then walk alone, then die.
I hear the sound of notes in my ears
approaching on silent footprints.
I enter the monastic life; abandon untimely
meals, vulgar songs, and dance, mime statuette,
toss garlands, toss racy clothing,
abstain skunk of perfumes abstain no visitors.
I leave all sinful shadows behind.
But I am of this world, not out of this world.
I swear way too much and pray too little.
The way of Zen and Jesus is a boxing match.
Crack and smack a curse—
twigs break silence.


Hello Muggins,
my babe,
I don't mind you if—
crazy Persian cat,
copper eyes, emerging
from Britain, ancient Persia, & Turkey
you are a sabotaging, spoiled little brat.
sniffing, shanghai glue,
& that old Skoal snuff box
left wide open again.

Sneezing as if,
spirits your way,
red peppers, peppers
Carolina Reaper plants
scarlet insane chilies
stuffed in your
pink nostrils.

Your life is now set on fire
overboard abandon my computer
keyboard, you leap for safety,
scammer, slide those kitty feet.
Kitty's feet slide skimmer
across newly waxed
Brazilian Cherry
hardwood floor—
you pole vault, ground floor
pussy cat style leap
into my open left side,
over-sized, bib overalls pocket.


Today’s LittleNip:

I have cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul.

—Jean Cocteau


—Medusa, with thanks to Michael Johnson for today’s fine poetry, and for sending photos to accompany it!
 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Medusa

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