Dogslandia

Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Sonnet #175

The tip jar that consumes the world
Exists so owners don't have to pay
So they can tell you it's your say
Whether you make a living wage or
Not. Everyone needs a tip jar, now
We must be kind on Facebook
Get as many people to seek and look
Otherwise when debts and bills grow
When cancer comes, when lost jobs
When sick children, when broken cars
When the month adds up to rob
And no one knows how anyone ever
Made a living in this country before
No one ever has enough, just tips for more

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Sonnet #174

They run along the wires above the dogs
If they fall, it's thirty feet to ground
And even there, up there, the dialog
is loud, the angry shouts, the sound
of the frustrated hunters, the warnings.
To get to even one sunflower head, it takes
A courage to face every morning
Because the whole world hunts and slake
their bellies on squirrel meat and bones
The brave leave safety, run to bury
All they need to brace for storms
To starve or race the feathered or hairy
The barking dog, the hawks and swooping falcon:
Grant me a squirrel's courage to brave grimalkin

Sonnet #173

Go to the store and buy a new you

With the right shoes, the right suit
Get a haircut, smile, the past is moot
We can buy a future, buy all brand new
A better job will come with clothes
Buy the classes that you need
Buy the certifications to lead
You can reinvent yourself with just a pose
A shine in the right light, a wink, a nod
Find a new church, pray to a new god
Find a new house in a place, plant roses
Where the ground is bare and new
New things, new places, and new you
The bluebird follows: everything is blue

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Sonnet #172

The end of times are here, they're just
not evenly distributed, but look
The trash blown ragged at roadside edge
The people walking, there, how unjust
To them, all dreams lost, can't unlook
at them but say how close is this edge
We glide like ice cubes over life, it's just
That we don't notice how we melt. Look:
The crumbling houses, where the edge
of cities yawn into the kudzu vines, just-
ice thumbs upon the poor, builds more, look:
The empty mine shafts and the lake's edge
Where dead bird bones, a bit dissolved appear
The smog that chokes us out, we disappear

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Sonnet #171

Fireflies and certain birds, to me, 

resemble souls, the flash of color
in twilight dark, where cardinals hover
in the green, like discovering the holy:
A whistling meteor of love sought
If bugs can feel a kind of love
If an insect feels more than shove
and push and live and eat and ought
to know the eggs they leave will
be their legacy among the rotting wood
The soul of them, the spark that stills
the hearts of children, gathering good
Dancing in the night grass, they will
clap their hands, and shriek at starlight blood

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Sonnet #170

After death, or perhaps ascension,
but likely death, who will rise to fill
the gap we leave? I have some candidates
That seem to carry enough good intention
and good adaptability, and perhaps the will
The raccoon has thumbs, a genius adequate
But such loners, like the octopi, they live
in solitude, mostly, and science demands
collaboration, so I turn to dolphins
Next and think perhaps they'll thrive
From tidal flats as the sea expands
But will they build and think and often
Enough to merit interstellar advancement?
The ants, perhaps, there are so many ants

Or perhaps machines, their factories vent
to recreate this ghost of us, their discernment.

Friday, April 7, 2017

Sonnet #169

I know how to live, but not how to stop,

I wake, I breathe, I fill my mouth with water
The aches and creaks I cultivate and fodder
Keep me grounded, while I close crop
The weeds upon my skin, and scrape
The chaos off that always stinks like empty
Houses filled with rainwater, plenty
of time spent smelling good, all us great apes
Must dress ourselves, and leave the room
We know how to live, it's moving through
The tasks at hand, keeping up the zoom
of everything, maintaining houses (make room
Make room for more life) struggle on to
the next room, the next room, (make room)

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Sonnet #168

It's spring, high spring, where all the green is true
And all the blossoms break even in deep woods
A walk upon a shaded path, a scent so good
It made me stop and trace the breeze through
To mysteries of vacant copses, shielding trees
What thing, what flower, what bloom is this?
Somewhere in that dense shade a scream of bliss
Exploding in some tiny bloom I cannot see
The passing breeze blows all away and I,
no more certain of any scent but damp
for it rained last night, none left but try
to search the petrichor, the paths of tramps
the sweet rot of vegetation as it dies
Oh, secret flower, oh sacred memory's stamp

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Sonnet #167

Poetry hides in poverty, but it isn't our fault
We're doing everything we can to whisper
What we need into the holy vespers
It's just that spirit pays as much as ought
By the community that holds up churches
We live in the age of beggar kings and cabbages
Made gourmet, where all the ravages
Of age creep in without medicine to purchase
Because you say that we chose this
We all felt the spirit move inside our hearts
And I refused to drown it in brute work, bliss
But to be the ascetic of stutters and fits and starts

Poetry hides in poverty, and it isn't our fault
It's yours for pretending we ought to halt

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Sonnet #166

To capture all the butterflies of thought
And etherize them gently, that their wings
Will last forever, delicately precious things
That tatter just a little, just from being caught
And fray at edges while time marches
Until a thousand years from now an excavation
of a catalog reveals a puff of dust, a nation
distilled into piles of colored starches
all in piles below the pins, where a librarian
once placed a name, a title, a date
Never betray these words, whereon
the butterflies all lie in glorious state
Or if you forget your self, misuse their clarion,
Deny the breath was here, thyself abate

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Sonnet #165

Every spring, when blooms return, I think

This might be last, perhaps the storm
perhaps a cell, falling star, a dread worm;
car accident three blocks away, sink
the teeth of one car into another's cheek, devour
the passenger, damage the drivers, rushing a light
at a left turn, nothing will ever make it all right
but every spring the flowers swell and pour
And push so hard against the dry and cold
The green leaves grow, the day is finally ours
And in the rush, the wreck, a flash too bold
The sirens come too late, the mourning hours
among the flowers, a man just 24 years old
Every flower smells so sweet, every note sours

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Sonnet #164

In a thousand years, there will be coral

Kept in glass, where automated tides
Roll in and back, and keepers keep so careful
To preserve the specimens that bide
Away the centuries, unable to evolve
to handle modern oceans, trapped in glass
forever, the albatross we bear, the whole
of them that's left a display in a crass
amusement park, where children are brought
to see the gorgeous dance beneath black light
Kids will be told how this is all that's left
Then, leave for the gift shop, buy bereft

Friday, March 17, 2017

Coming to the TWIG BOOKSHOP on Saturday, in San Antonio, TX

Joe M. McDermott & Friends
Fancy Tea and Speculative Fiction Authors
Saturday, March 18, 2017
2:00-4:00 pm.
Joe McDermott is a popular local author of many Science Fiction books.

Join Joe and his friends to celebrate his latest endeavors with his friends: 

Stina Leicht, Cold Iron

Martha Wells, Cloud Roads and Serpent Sea
  

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Sonnet #163

Bloom if you must, but know it is risky
Late frosts sweep through and blow it all down
The insects come and lay eggs around
Based on the smell, the borers briskly
Burrow inside baby peaches and plums
And everything will be lost, all fruit
Fallen, rotten, malformed, new shoots
devoured, diseases wake up in the spring
Energy blooming is vigor that's lost
When it's time to fight the enemy host
The chompers, mosaics, and borers, and things
Big things and little things, all come to the feast
Here come the monsters, here come the beasts
Bloom if you must, and in blooming, risk defeat