Miscellaneous

Hi Ho Silver!

Yesterday, I had just finished printing out a poem for my next book, when someone knocked.  It was Molly, come to visit me with her dog, Silver.

I am clueless what triggered her, but the moment Silver crossed my threshold, she shot straight to my printer tray, grabbed the poem, and commenced chewing.  I was stunned, and couldn’t think of a thing to say other than, “My poem!”.

But Molly, looking quite embarrassed for her dog, replied, “I’m sorry, Paul, but you see — Silver has good taste in poetry.”

Miscellaneous

Get Your Free Poetry Sampler!

I have prepared for your pleasure a free Sampler of nine poems from Sunburst Woman: And Other Poems About Intimacy.  These poems are honest, down-to-earth, and accessible.  They use striking metaphors and imagery to convey my occasionally scandalous notions about emotional intimacy.  And the Sampler is available without cost or obligation.

The Sampler is formatted as a pdf, and to get your free, no strings, no obligations copy, simply contact me via the form located in the header of this blog.  I will email the pdf to you as soon as possible.

Miscellaneous

The Writing Teacher

It’s hard to be a good writer without being a great reader.

The man who taught me that was a family friend and high school teacher who lived down the block from me while I was growing up. He and his wife were over for dinner one evening when I brought up the subject of how writing was taught in our high school.

I’m afraid I was rather rude about it — being all of 16, and knowing everything. The man was not an English teacher (he taught shop), but I’m sure some of the English teachers were friends of his. My criticisms could have easily seemed harsh to him. Nevertheless, he surprised me: Writing, he gently agreed, was not taught “optimally” in our high school.

He went on to explain. It was the fashion in education to teach writing by diagramming sentences. The theory was that diagramming taught students the principles of grammar and good sentence structure — lessons they could transform into good writing.

But in his opinion, the best way to learn how to write well was to read good writing in order to actually see how it was done.

For me, it was one of those moments when someone says something that makes everything else fall into place. Suddenly, I knew what to do if I was to become a better writer.

Tragically, that was one of the last lessons he ever offered anyone. A few days later, he without warning died of a heart attack while still a relatively young man.

Rest in peace, Ben Haddock.

Miscellaneous

I Don’t Even Like Rabbits

I don’t even like rabbits.

But there was a rabbit

showed up in my yard late Winter.
He wasn’t shy.
He wouldn’t run

until the last moment..

It got to where
around the time of the thaw,
I found myself watching for him;
Still not liking rabbits.

.

One morning mid-Spring
after first light but before sunrise
I opened my blinds…

CAT!
A large tom prowling North to South.
I took sides: hoped for the rabbit.

That day, no rabbit.

Next day, no rabbit.

Third day,
no rabbit.

.

Fourth day, I told myself,
“Don’t be a fool,
it’s the way of things.”

.

Three more days passed then
two rabbits!

I snorted, “Off courting, I see.
Next time, tell me!

“Dumb rabbit!”

.

I still don’t like rabbits.
But I went to the store last night;

bought carrots
for two rabbits.

 

Miscellaneous

My Ex Thought I was God!

My second ex-wife thought I was so good in bed that I must be god. Sometimes in bed, she would even call me “God! God!”

But then at other times, she would call me, “Jim! Oh, Jim!” And even now and then, “Steve!”

I assume she was a Trinitarian.