POEMS BY MEMBERS
BUTTERFLY OF FAITH
A wise and quiet thing
While at her daily work
She kisses flowers.
(Bright butterfly is what I'd like to be!)
Crass cricket creaks and loudly twangs his string;
Throughout the sleepless night, he shouts for hours.
(Why can't he drowse like me, nocturnally?)
Smart butterfly has this
That silence in its subtle way empowers
The one who grasps its meaning, deep and true.
Should sunny day digress to drenching showers,
Then under glossy leaf you'll see her cling,
Not uttering one dark or gloomy view,
Just fluttering her optimistic hue
While waiting for the joy the sun will bring!
Wondering all these years
about equine politics
and the mysterious power
of just one vote,
I always thought uncle
Albert said that the zebra
at the San Diego Zoo had
a huge--and he meant
Always thought aunt Millie
was wrong to turn so red
and laugh so obnoxiously.
A PRAYER OF TRUST
Lord and Master of all
I come to you with grace untold,
Your love and favor fill my mind,
Accept my praise a million fold.
May all I ever learned from You
Bring peace and joy to those You send,
May all the steps I take and do
Lift up Your name from start to end.
God Father, Son and Holy Ghost
Please hold my hand and let me stand
That I may help You find the lost
Till Jesus takes me to His land.
THE LONG YEAR
Diane Auser Stefan
politics o eight
players spewing promises
muddy clear waters
selling time to all who run
so many voices
hawking so many choices
we strain to find truths
come swift November
voting closes a long year
politics o eight
THE WORK OF ATTIC HEAT
In the attic above
her upstairs apartment,
where temperatures soared
into the hundreds,
Miss Annie's noodles
spent the summer drying
on flat screens
spread across wooden horses.
We looked forward to meals
of chicken noodle soup
on winter days
after noodles were bagged and sealed.
Miss Annie labored for days
to cut the dough
in perfect lines,
thin and forever straight.
She knew that weeks of attic heat
would shrink them even more.
Relatives clamored for that
of Annie's dough
when she came out of hiding
and dough was left
of the heat of the searing sun.
OLD MAN WITH A POSE
There. . .
the old man sits
in the dusty corner of the cafťó
back to a hard wall, facing crowded air.
To his right,
another non-yielding barrier
keeps him safeó
out of the hubba dub dub.
To his left,
the teasing waitress
takes his order and floats away,
a maple leaf in the wind
serving her attentive public.
I sneak another peekó
a contented face, overalls,
hands clasped in place on the table,
a shift of his body and then a settling.
My eyes scrutinize him as he lowers
his snowy head like a tulip droops
her paper-white bloom.
Dozing or praying? Baffling.
It is the exact, same pose.
VISIT WORKSHOP FOR
Ellie coiled upon my lap
What could be better
when tummy growls,
than a BLT, stacked high
on whole wheat toast
with summer tomato
and fresh, crisp lettuce?
Goes down easy,
but only for a moment.
fills the house,
sings an irresistible song
of desire, lingers,
pulls your strings
again and again.
Dewell H. Byrd
My brotherís gone to camp
so he wonít even know,
he thinks girls canít pogo.
Letís give it a try.
You go first. Youíll be
good at it
what with your long legs
youíre good at everything.
WOW, sprong, sprong.
Way-to-go, good jumping.
My turn now, stand clear
and catch me if I fall.
I did it.
You know, when I was
I felt all jiggley
on my chest,
two little spots.
They shook like the buttons
on grandmaís coat when she laughs.
Iím too young, arenít I?
I mean, to have breasts and all.
Letís do hop-scotch and
see if itís still there.
Donít you dare tell anyone.
Iíll be teased out of sixth grade.
Laurence W. Thomas
My dad, the most inept man
in our family
when it comes to cooking,
is in the garage barbecuing ribs and chickens.
I have things to do, but offer to lend a hand.
We work together until all the people in the yard
are no longer hungry. Then dad, never much
at public displays of affection when he was alive,
gives me a long, warm embrace.
ONE TOO MANY
How many blessings can we
count if children are blessings unto us.
Matters not the numbers even if it was only one to discuss.
That one is still considered a blessing from the Lord. He has given
A precious soul for us to keep but not like cattle that are driven
Unless the child is raised in joy and love that canít be disputed.
Our children need Godís love and it is up to us to see itís imputed,
Therein lies our blessings, one to many matters not only Godís love.
He will always stimulate our hearts as though it comes from
Each day, Home Econ teacher
would spew out her anger in torrents.
"Stop talking and clean!"
Girls glared at her--mean.
A dirty fridge was an abhorrence.
A wild English teacher,
attempted a task Herculean:
"You'll write every day
a good one-act play."
Her students became quite protean.
World History was Miz
The difference 'tween premier and king
she carefully taught.
But all was for naught:
our ears only heard the bell ring!
DINNER ON THE GROUNDS
After barbecued mutton and fried
chicken, Dad raised his sharp machete,
plunged it deep in a yellow-bellied
Arkansas Black Diamond.
Again and again he whacked, serving
red rocking triangles.
Deacons guffawed, women and
when Dad told his congregation, ďLetís
kill a watermelon.Ē
THREE WOMEN ON TV
One makes a cobbler on a cooking show.
She entertains a guest while mixing dough
with buttered batter banter that is not
a recipe youíll ever need to know.
A teacher suffers frequent kidney calls,
embarrassment that drives her up the walls.
Then this new medicine delivers her
from sanctuary in the toilet stalls.
The addict in the waiting room will sit
until called in to show her new-found grit.
Although sheís failed so many times before,
she says, ďThis time is now my time to quit.Ē