Bonus Poem of the Week: Minooka…Again!

Minooka…Again!
February 16, 2017

10:28 this morning, just trying to do my thing
And get things done when suddenly, I hear my telephone ring.
Ring-a-ling-a-ling! Once again, ringing off the hook.
Damn it all! Can’t anyone simply let me finish my book?

So I check my Caller ID, and what else do I see?
The name “Minooka” flashing mockingly right back at me
With an all-too-familiar number beneath it, making me think,
“Oh, hell no! Not this crap again. Boy, does my luck stink.”

After all, over a month ago, these bastards called my home
To demand money from me, threatening to not leave me alone
Until I donated to one of the countless charities
They claimed to represent, to which I said “And their names, please?”

The fact that I also had to say “Hello?” multiple times
When I answered them to get and answer back boggles my mind.
Hell, they even hung up a few times when I dared to answer their calls,
Which I’ll admit was dumb of me, but here’s why I did so at all:

Picking up to tell them to take me off their calling list
Was the only way they’d back off—the only way they’d get the gist—
As calling them later on to tell them that very same thing
Would only lead me to an automated lecture or something

That wouldn’t connect me to a live person whose ear I could chew
Off in my mission to tell them that when it came to them, I was through.
Instead, their robot gave me an earful ‘bout their exemption from
The Do No Call list just ‘cause they’re “charity collector” scum

Who probably keep the lion’s share of whatever money they make
And give only fifteen percent to those whom they collect for. Those fakes!
I’ve been wise to that crap for so long, it isn’t even funny,
Which is why if I feel at all compelled to give any of my money

To any organization, I first see if they’re legit,
And only then, once I see that they are, do I see them as fit
Of a direct donation to their cause—never over the phone,
Especially via unsolicited calls that won’t leave me alone—

The kind of calls Minooka’s made time after time after time,
Even when I ignore them completely and they’re not on my mind,
Yet they kept on coming back in the day, and I hoped in vain that they
Would take the hint from my silence and they would’ve gone away.

Clearly, though, that wasn’t the case, and I’ve come to decide
That maybe investing in a call blocker would’ve helped save my hide—
Assuming, of course, that good ol’ Minooka didn’t have a second number
To work around such a defense, thus making such a move a blunder.

Here they are again, though, calling me in the middle of the day,
Demanding money from me as though it’s my obligation to pay.
I thought this crap was over and done with, but clearly, I was wrong,
Else I’d be singing at this moment a whole different kind of song.

Looks like I’ll need a call blocker after all now. Son of a gun!
Then maybe I’ll contact the FCC if I want this battle won.
These unwarranted calls, after all, have got to stop somehow,
Fr the harassment I’m getting now has really got me having a cow.

Enjoy tormenting me ‘til then, Minooka, for it won’t be long
‘Til you finally get your comeuppance and I prove to you how wrong
You are to keep asking the same target time after time again
For cash to fill your own bank account. It’s all just a matter of when.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: Talent is NOT Overrated

Talent Is NOT Overrated
February 12, 2017

“Talent is overrated.” Such is what certain insiders say.
“So long as the concept is catchy enough, people will come to pay.
It makes no difference how stupid, forced, contrite, or insincere
A story is, so long as it brings us the dough we hold so dear.”

“I’m sorry…what?” I demand in the face of such BS,
For talent indeed means something, so allow me to address
This point in this poem for the sake of encouraging
Ambitious, intelligent authors to at last seek their chance to sing
As well as publishers everywhere to give these folks the chance
The fame and fortune that others ‘fore them have gotten from the dance,
Be said prize deserved or not, for these days, more than ever,
Folks deserve to read material that’s bound to last forever.

So talent’s overrated? Then what can you really expect
When folks pay for, read, and have their brains befouled by some hack’s dreck
And discover the hard way just how sloppy it’d been thrown together
And that it can’t hold a candle to the greats in any kind of weather?
What do you say when shock value’s the only “merit” upon which
Said story can stand itself? Can you really praise it without a twitch
Of your lips or nose or eyelids, or will you end up giving away
The objective truth that said work never should’ve seen the light of day?

Now let me tell you what you can gain from a book that’s well-written:
A tale that can stand strong ‘gainst the competition and leave folks smitten
With characters worth investing in, a plot that can last through the ages,
And a feeling of satisfaction once one’s done flipping through the pages—
That is until years pass and one feels compelled to read it again
And the tale ends up being every bit as good as it did back then.
Not only that, but word of mouth and recognition can spread
Like wildfire about such genuinely good stuff until it’s been read
By the masses far and wide who, in turn, will sing its praises
Of the work year after year ‘til its legend lasts throughout the ages,
Which eventually leads to more copies sold and hence cash earned
For author, agent, and publisher alike, leaving to be burned
Only the fools who can’t write and any agent dumb enough
To scoff at the one work’s writer and claim it hasn’t the stuff.

Many is, after all, the agent who hasn’t the brains or the spine
To support that which has value in these messy , troubled times
Who’s time and again turned down such stuff for irredeemable crap
To sell to publishers so that said suits could have cash in their laps
From feeding the desperate masses whatever they could shovel out,
Which in turn has dulled the masses’ senses and made them mindless clouts
While those who’ve demanded better for so long have been made to starve
Or to look elsewhere to sate their hunger and avoid the barbs
Of the tainted crap that’s had no talent or love put into it.
Now, tell me: When it comes to change, don’t you see the world as fit?

Because if you ask me, then yes, the industry must change.
For too long have we been fed crap. Things must be rearranged.
Talent is not overrated. Stop shoving that mantra down
Our throats because at this point, we need more talent to go around,
And not just talent, either, but also effort and love—
The kind of passion that fits talent like a hand in a glove
And has made many a classic in every industry you can name.
It’s a tried-and-true method from the past that surely can do the same
In this era, should we all at least try to make the effort to
Promote the works of talented writers to be read by me and you.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: Square Peg

Square Peg
February 6, 2017

Square peg, square peg, what do you see?
I see a round hole staring back at me—
A hole so round like so many more before
Into which I’ve tried to fit ‘til I could take it no more,
For every time I’ve tried, I’d learned the hard way
Why I didn’t belong there, and it’s really hard to say
Why it’s taken me so long to even try to find
A spot to call my own and leave my worries behind.
Worse yet, I know not how much longer I can take
Going through the paces and being lost in the wake
Of other people’s success when I, time and again,
Have failed to find my niche and make all right in the end.
What is it that I’m doing wrong? Where is it that I must go
To finally overcome all my frustration and woe?
What is it I must do to finally prove to the world
That I’m actually worth as much as any other boy or girl
Or woman or man walking beneath Heaven’s balmy sky?
Will I ever find true happiness at all before I die?
Will it ever turn out that I can at last be happy with life,
Or am I doomed to forever live in pain and strife?
Either way, I’m growing tired of poking around
And figuring out where I fit all snug, safe, and sound.
I’ll keep on trying, however, al the same in vain hope,
Even though my journey’s already sent me to the end of my rope.
“A place for everything,” after all, “and everything in its place,”
And I refuse to be known as a sad, pitiful disgrace
Who enjoys sitting on his haunches wallowing in self-pity,
Especially when I’ve still a chance to end up in the big city
And relish the rest of my life in paradise and luxury.
Now that’s the kind of life I’d like to live, you see.
Until then, though, I’m stuck here wondering what I should do
To at last escape this hell and make my dreams come true,
And only time will tell if things go ne way or another.
Either way, keep your fingers crossed for me, sisters and brothers,
For this square peg, one way or another, is set to fit
Somewhere on this peg board ‘cause I can’t afford to quit.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Bonus Poem of the Week: A Message for the Commonplace Angry YouTube Reviewer

A Message for the Commonplace Angry YouTube Reviewer
February 2, 2017

Losing your cool,
Losing your temper—
Temper of a child,
Temper out of control.
Control yourself.
Control your anger—
Anger over minor stuff,
Anger over petty stuff.
Stuff your rage.
Stuff your histrionics.
Histrionics make you look childish.
Histrionics make you seem self-entitled—
Self-entitled brat,
Self-entitled and obnoxious,
Obnoxious screaming,
Obnoxious cursing—
Cursing like a drunken sailor!
Cursing like a bad comedian!
Comedian you’re not.
Comedian? More like laughing stock!
Stock complaints,
Stock vocabulary,
Vocabulary that’s grown tired,
Vocabulary that’s painfully limited—
Limited by your stupidity,
Limited by your lack of effort—
Effort dumped into your theatrics,
Effort absent from your editing,
Editing so amateurish,
Editing riddled with jump cuts—
Cuts that cater to low attention spans,
Cuts that have become cliché today,
Today when lowbrow rules supreme,
Today when stupidity already reigns,
Reigns free,
Reigns unchallenged,
Unchallenged and well-fed,
Unchallenged and wealthy,
Wealthy on the masses’ low standards,
Wealthy on the masses’ ignorance—
Ignorance that’s long plagued the mainstream,
Ignorance we’ve dealt with for too long.
Long have we endured idiocy.
Long have we yearned for class—
Class and intelligence,
Class and decency—
Decency that you should be bringing,
Decency that you should be promoting.
Bringing.
Promoting.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: The Road to Grownup Town

The Road to Grownup Town
January 30, 2017

Growing up ain’t always grand.
After all, no one will hold your hand
And walk you through
What it is you must do
To make your way through this land.

Everyone has his or her own
Path down which he or she alone
Traverses along
To the tune of a song
That hopefully leads him or her home.

Even when you’ve found your space,
You can’t help but look back and face
The place you used to be
And for yourself see
Just how much of a shameless disgrace

The scene you once knew long ago
Has transformed for the worst, you know,
Filled with assholes galore
Who ruin what’s in store
By bringing everyone else woe

By the bushel, which adds up quickly
And makes things ever so prickly
That it’s no longer the
Place at all to be,
Lest you want to end up just as sickly

In the head as the pains in the ass
Who, with their sheer lack of class,
End up making a chore
Of all that’s in store
For those who must cope with their sass.

Even when these schmucks aren’t a thing,
Looking back leaves such a sting,
Seeing how things change
And rearrange,
Making one ask, “Is this still my thing?”

Never mind all the new gals and guys.
What of the things you don’t recognize—
All the sights and sounds
That weren’t at all around
The last time you were made wise?

Worse yet, what happened to all that
Which was around when you were, jack—
All the legends and lore
That there was in store
When you were naught but a wee brat?

To put it simply, they’re gone,
Having long ago said so long
To ex-kids like you
Who once saw them through
To the end. Is that so wrong?

‘Cause if not, what about all the stuff
That has stuck around for the young pups,
Some of which is each bit
As when you were fit
To enjoy it even in times tough

While the rest of it’s gone to crap
And is so lame that you can’t laugh,
No matter how much
You want to and such?
What have you to say about that?

That it ain’t the same either way
Like it was back in the day?
Well, perhaps, then,
That’s a sign, dear friend,
Telling you to embrace a new day—

A day in which you’re the grownup
And must walk away from the kid stuff,
No mater how much
You don’t want to do such
A thing, no matter how tough

Doing so might be in the end.
That’s just the way things are, friend.
We must al leave our toys
For the next girls and boys
And prepare for what’s ‘round the bend.

After all, whoever knows?
Forever shan’t last your woes,
For surely there’s gold
‘Round a bend untold
Waiting for you, should you want it so.

Trust me, you’ll not know unless
You make it your effort best
To carry on down
The road to Grownup Town
And put your childhood to rest.

After all, no one’s a child forever,
And wallowing in pity will never
Allow you to move on,
So stand up and be strong
And prepare yourself for whatever

And always keep in mind, friend,
Even with your childhood at its end,
You still have memories
To help put you at ease
When your wits are coming to and end,

Not to mention the opportunity
To make more as you try to see
Your fortune unfold
And bring forth ventures bold
Via which to forge your destiny.

There’s only one way to see
What your life can come to be,
And that’s to get up
From the couch, ex-pup,
And accept your destiny.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: Frustration with Critics

Frustration with Critics
January 26, 2017

Not helpful
Not respectful
Respectful of my work
Respectful of the art
Art proven difficult
Art of promotion
Promotion of the future
Promotion of labor
Labor you on with your words
Labor you on with your points
Points poorly worded
Points that are often wrong
Wrong according to the experts
Wrong according to common knowledge
Knowledge you act like you have
Knowledge you actually lack
Lack basic manners
Lack tact
Tact and maturity
Tact and grace
Grace traded in for condescension
Grace traded in for blatant repetition
Repetition out of laziness
Repetition out of ignorance
Ignorance concerning word usage
Ignorance concerning encouragement
Encouragement pointing out perks
Encouragement showing things done right
Right way of critiquing
Right way to advise
Advise you to wise up
Advise you to change
Change for the better
Change to become more helpful
Helpful to those with the backbone
Helpful to those with the ambition
Ambition to seek fortune
Ambition to seek fame
Fame for my work
Fame held by others
Others from long ago
Others from years recent
Recent room for the next big thing
Recent room for improvement
Improvement I know I need
Improvement you’re not helping me with
With that said, goodbye
With that said, see you in Hell
Goodbye
Hell

*****

 
Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Bonus Poem of the Week: Message for a Backstabbing, Narcissistic Mooch

Message for a Backstabbing, Narcissistic Mooch
January 20, 2017

How could you do this to me after al that we’ve been through?
Three long years during which I’ve been naught but nice to you,
And this is how you repay me, milking me for more of the same
I’ve been giving you since day one without a thank you in my name?
I’ve been nothing but generous and kind when it came to you,
And yet, I’ve meant nothing at all to you but yet someone else to screw
Left, right, and center with your demands, never, ever once ceasing
How I’ve catered to your every whim, you joke of a human being,
Without so much as a single complaint—worries, perhaps, but that’s all,
As you taxed me every chance you had. Really, now, did you want me to fall?
If I’d done you any wrong, the least you could’ve done was tell me
My crime so that I could’ve made amends, as that’s how friendship should be,
But no! You gave me the silent treatment, childish as you are,
And have taken me for granted. Well, you’ve taken this all too far.
I’m more than just another body for you to exploit on your time.
I’m a human being, dammit! Can’t you see that, or are you blind
By the selfishness that colors your nature so thoroughly to the core
That I can’t help but wonder now just what kind of crap would’ve been in store
For me if I’d stuck around with you any longer than I already have?
Well, guess what: Good riddance! You’ve just lost a valuable friend, you cad.
Let’s see you try to get on now without me by your side
And with so many others just like me wanting to tear up your hide—
People whom you’ve jilted over the years simply because you could,
And hopefully, our combined wrath will teach you to be up to no good.
Sadly, ‘twill be too little, too late, for you’ve tapped us of all we had,
But I still hope your deeds bite you in the ass all the same, you cad.
Again, then, good riddance, old “pal,” for cheating me time and again.
Serves you right for using and abusing people and mistreating so many friends.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: Perversion Rises Again

Perversion Rises Again
January 17, 2017

Bad influence,
Bad writing—
Writing so hollow,
Writing so shallow,
Shallow and empty,
Shallow and void,
Void of soul,
Void of sense,
Sense of structure,
Sense of morality—
Morality for the blind,
Morality for the ignorant,
Ignorant of itself,
Ignorant of empowerment,
Empowerment of future generations,
Empowerment of women—
Women who should know better,
Women with low—if any—standards,
Standards for entertainment,
Standards for storytelling,
Storytelling made sloppy,
Storytelling stunted,
Stunted with cheap thrills,
Stunted message,
Message of how love works,
Message of how love should be—
Be for women like them,
Be for people in general.
General tackiness,
General disconnection,
Disconnection from worldly affairs,
Disconnection from reality,
Reality of mockery,
Reality of excess hype,
Hype undeserved,
Hype over mediocrity—
Mediocrity and worse,
Mediocrity typical,
Typical of the 2010s,
Typical of this fallen world,
World where talent struggles,
World where smut shines,
Shines blindingly,
Shines violently,
Violently vexing,
Violently hoping.
Hoping for something good.
Hoping to witness your riddance.
Good…
Riddance!

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Poem of the Week: Random Thoughts on a January Afternoon

Random Thoughts on a January Afternoon
January 10, 2017

It’s January,
And yet, we’ve got rain falling
Down upon our heads—
Down, down upon us,
Washing ‘way whatever snow
Had fallen last night
And covered the ground
In a nice white blanket of
Wint’ry purity.
In its place now…mud—
Sticky, sloppy, gooey glop
‘Neath the thinning lawn,
So thick that my boots
Get stuck in it with each step
I take in it. Yuck!
What a mucky mess!
Oh, well…maybe it will freeze
Tonight and harden
The soft, mushy ground.
One can only hope…but wait!
I hear wind whipping
Past my window like
The proverbial bat out
Of Hell. Wow! Such force!
Whooshing past my house
With an ancient god’s fury…
Zap! The lights are off.
My computer’s down.
Damn my luck! The power’s out.
Might as well write this
By hand on scratch sheet
Until ComEd manages
To come down my street
And set it all right.
Man, though! How dark it’s getting!
I need a flashlight.
Click! Okay, I’m good.
Hopefully, this won’t last much
Longer, ‘cause I don’t
Know just how fresh the
Batteries are in this thing,
And I’m in no mood
To find out the hard
Way. Okay, then…off I go!
That’s it…moving on…
Ugh! The light outside’s
Dimming pretty quickly. I’d
Better bust my ass
And finish this piece
Before something else happens
And all is for naught.
Then again, why’m I
Writing this in the first place?
What’s the point in me
Writing this damn thing
When I can find a pressing
Topic to cover
Like war, disease, or
Even telemarketing?
Why’m I just rambling
About how my day’s
Going? What a waste of time!
What is wrong with me?
I have so many
Other things to take care of,
And yet here I am
Writing random junk
On paper for no reason
Other than I’m “bored”
And the power’s out.
Wow, do my priorities
Leave a lot to be
Desired. That’s it!
My mind’s now made up. Time to
Move on to the next
Ordeal at hand. I’m
Done wasting my time at that
Which simply goes on
And on with little
To no direction. Time to
Move on to something
With more substance and
Purpose. What do you say, self?
I say shut up and
Put the pencil down.
Better yet, why not take a
Nap and rest your damn
Aching head before
We both go insane? Okay,
Fine! To bed we go.
Then, when we wake up,
It’s off to tackle that one
Thing we’ve been working
On that we took a
Break from a while back. What do
You say? Fine by me.
Let’s nap. Alright, then.
Sorry, poem, but it’s time
For me to move on.
Then when I wake up,
The power will come back on,
And off to the next
Project I shall go,
Hopefully, to make progress
In something at last.

*****

 

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

Bonus Poem of the Week: Violence

Violence
January 6, 2017

Dedicated to those who were affected by the Ft. Lauderdale Airport attack yesterday, January 6, 2017.

Violence isn’t funny. Violence isn’t a joke.
This world’s such a bloody powder keg, always going up in smoke
As the slightest spark ignites it and blows it all to bits,
Leaving those who still live within it entering furious fits
Of sobs of grief and fury that seem to never stop
As tears run down their faces, forming rivers, drop by drop.
So many derelicts on this earth getting a jolly from,
Ending people’s lives for little to no reason, the scum.
Worse yet, there doesn’t seem to be any solution in sight,
For all humanity seems to do these days is fight, fight, fight—
Not the kind of constructive fight, either, that brings to an end
Any kind of bloodshed or destruction. ‘Tis what I see leastways, friend,
For I’ve learned that no matter how much closer as a world we become,
Our equally growing self-centeredness keeps us from being one,
Whether it be with the folks next door or with nations ‘cross the sea.
The search for peace may very well last us an eternity.
That doesn’t mean we give up, though, for doing so only means
Acceptance of how things are, no matter how messy or obscene
They’ve become over the years when we all know they can be
Much more serene than what they’ve been, and who doesn’t want to see
The day when stabbings and shootings become naught but a memory
And bombs and missiles fail to launch to decimate you and me
And the only fists and feet a-flailing are those in MMA bouts?
One must admit that at least it’s a dream worth dreaming about.
Then again, why not try to make the dream a reality
And work together to achieve better things for you and me?
Why don’t we set aside our differences and cooperate
To squash that which we’ve all grown tired of? That’s how we all can relate
With one another, for if nothing else, such is the common thread
We all share in this day and age. Come, then! Let’s end the dread.
Let’s work together to move forward into a brighter day
And stop the violence ‘fore it claims only more lives in any way.
The century’s still young, after all, and though a golden age
Is still many years away from now, we can still at least turn the page
For our children and their children after them in the hope that they
Will no longer have to suffer through the hell we know today.

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk