NaPoWriMo: 30 poems in 30 days (day 2)

Day 2 prompt: Write a poem about a place (i.e., a house, store, school, or office). How ‘bout a bar?


Packy’s

Sorry to say it’s gone now,
Packy Lenahan’s bar.
Packy too. Kids may age,
Patty and Maureen Keating,
lived in the same attached building.
I forget the people’s names
in the apartment above Packy’s.

It was on the corner of Madison street,
where friends Jimmy, June, and nine more lived,
and my grandpop had lived before I was born,
and Butler street where we lived.

Packy’s, some thirty yards west of
my bedroom window,
was where they drank and smoked,
and where they played games and ate food
until well past my bed time.

Inside to the right a huge mahogany bar
had big high mirrors, stacked whisky bottles, and beer taps.
I learned shuffleboard to the left,
and my first dart board was on the back wall,
left of some stairs up to the dining room
with tables and chairs, a kitchen and
toilets were to the right.

Few stools were at the bar, but it had real,
often used, brass spittoons on the dirty,
cigarette-burn stained, wood floor where beer
was often spilled and seldom mopped
under high ceilings with fans on long poles.

The back door was mostly for exiting,
or entering when closed (but not really),
on Sundays after church or after last call,
always unlocked after knocking.

There was a piano,
and a smell of stale beer
and staler smoke, and a juke box
back in the dining room
where I sometimes played,
but bar spittoons always intrigued me,
men spat, often missing, one of the things
they only did at Packy’s.

Many nights I laid in bed and listened to them
talking or singing and being loud, having fun
at Packy’s. Sometimes fighting
after Packy threw them out and I wanted
to go see who got clobbered
with a brass spittoon off the floor.


You can see Packy’s door and window over my Dad’s right shoulder (circa 1948)

Look both ways cuz it’s not always what you think.
Mind the gaps and don’t trip over spittoon.

Click for link to web page

 

 

 

Napowrimo: 30 poems in 30 days

Day 1 prompt: write a self-portrait poem in which I make a specific action a metaphor for my life.


My Marathon

It is not a race
to see who can finish first,
more like a gently paced
quest of endurance.

There’s luck involved,
both good and bad,
with my marathon – pushing
fortune and its end farther ahead.

Along my pocked path were
rocks, ruts, turnarounds, dead ends,
and restarts from new places; ravines, and
tragic obstacles to be bridged.

From a smooth sprint start, through
crowded roads, into and out of
adventure or danger. Now pleasant,
euphoric memories of pasts I’ve had.

Yet, an end is near.


Bill Reynolds: April 1, 2020

Look both ways. The path or road is life’s metaphor. Mind the gaps, metaphor or not.

Click for link to web page.

Poetry:


Tomorrow begins national poetry writing month (NaPoWriMo) when we write, and in some cases post, a poem each day. I try to write to the daily (optional) prompts, but any poem each day works. If you’re interested, click the button for the link.

Click for the link, or it’s napowrimo.net

This Happens

I’ve noticed something.
Some days all art
hangs straight while
clocks show correct time.

It is a pleasant 73-degrees
with just the right number
and location of clouds.

Do you have those days
when everything
is exactly
as it’s supposed to be?

Clothing is properly hung,
in the closet, color coordinated
and ready; my sock drawer
needs no reorganizing.

The dishwasher is correctly loaded
and organized properly. All settings
are as we like
and software
is all the latest version.

Fonts and images
match everyone’s taste.

Have you ever noticed
on some days, nobody
needs your advice,
assistance,
or repair services?


Look both ways even in the twilight zone.
Mind the gaps.
You know they’re there.


 

Poetry: Deep Cuts


I’ve noticed within you
dormant dark ironic
meanness which,
aroused by stress,
fueled with fear,
ushers in you a strife
emblazoned with virulent rancor,
etched with vitriol and venomous
words more harmful than
some source
of your frantic painful sputum.

You strike
like a cornered dog
or captured snake seeking vengeance
without sense of reason, cause, or goal,

neither coherent illumination nor purpose
tempers or dulls your slashing fangs.

Let lost conscience be not your guide,
nor grief and guilt become your
warrant.

Count to ten. Then count again.
Nothing can be unsaid,
unheard, or unfelt.


Look both ways when emotions rise.
Seek the mindful gaps of calmness and search for love.

Poetry: Back in the Day


House lights were off, back in the day.
A tinted eerie black and white glare,
as the boob-tube illuminated
white nicotine-laced clouds,
cigarette smoke from lit ends of
Camels or Pall Malls, unfiltered butts crowded
many ashtrays, back in the day.

Like ghosts sucked into dying lungs
of people I loved,
alive, back in the day.

The smelly, wispy, floating clouds
rolled and twisted or waved
as we passed through,
back in the day.

Forbidden addictions, I then, not yet
old enough to kill myself,
back in the day.

Second hand was for used,
not smoke.
Sickening smokers,
plus all who breathed in,
nicotine laced habits, back in the day.

Born into our rite of passage.
Now sick and dying, smoking goes on.

Never allow science to invade
personal stupidity.
We’ve always done it this way.
Back in the day.


Look both ways but stay away from back in the day.
Discover progress through science but mind the gaps to fill as we learn.