Sunday, November 18, 2018



It's so easy these days
to be anti-
anything (everything).

Our current culture's
overcome with skepticism,
criticism, negativism, but
what we could really use is
more "for", fewer "against".

Just you scout out some-
one (anyone) seeking
to float a balloon of hope
and you'll find hordes
of people, pumped up,
hoping only solely
to pop it, to stop it
before it takes flight, but

that just leads us nowhere.

Mother Teresa had it right:
Positivity gets you places,
(and Mr. Rogers knew how
to get from here to there:
"Look for the helpers.")

We just need to look for
(to find, to become)
those helpers
(those do-ers, do-gooders,
the gal Fridays, and
who'll help put the world
back together again.

So, thank you, Burt Bacharach,
(what the world needs now
IS love), and also perhaps, 
(it certainly wouldn't hurt)
a plentitude of Pollyannas. 

PSC/ 2018-Nov

Saturday, November 17, 2018

You Never Know

public domain photo - credits below
You Never Know

but, the veteran
inhabiting a cardboard box,
who scours dumpsters daily
for something warm
to wear, to eat
(she knows)
the single parent
working three jobs
who needs decide
which bills to pay
and not
(he knows)
the inner city kids
waiting greedily
for their free
school lunches,
the lonely seniors,
anticipating a visitation
from Meals on Wheels,
the refugees
traipsing empty
but filled with hope,
fueled by dreams,
carrying their most
precious cargo
(they know)
but unless
by the next 
natural disaster
finds YOU 
waiting on FEMA,
or Red Cross, or
or the kindness 
of strangers,
you'll (probably)
never know.

PSC / NOV 2018

public domain photo credits

Friday, November 16, 2018

The Eyes Have It

public domain photo by Lorie Shaull
public domain photo - credits below
The Eyes Have It

Actual words and facts 
appear to carry less
weight these days, but
perception is everything.

If she speaks softly,
cautiously, then
she's deemed timid, 
weak, unfit to lead;
yet when he
does the same, 
he's perceived as 
powerful and
in control. 

When she
raises her voice
(or her fist)
she's judged a shrew,
while he, 
(on the other hand)
is regarded as resolute,
determined, decisive, 
and passionate.

(That is, unless
he's black or brown -
then he's presumed
a threat.)

PSC / 2018-Nov

PD photo credits below (in order):
(1) woman's fist
(2) black fist

Thursday, November 15, 2018

In the Heart of the Beholder

public domain photo by Alan Cleaver

In the Heart of the Beholder

can sometimes be
a matter of perspective.

Do you descry calamity
in a caravan
crossing your borders
or children confined to cages?

Is fatality defined
by the forfeiture
of gun rights
or human lives?

At times, disaster
is just the buzz
of an alarm clock
calling us to rise.

Can you hear
the ringing?

PSC / 2018-Nov

public domain photo credits 

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Past Imperfect

public domain photo - credits appear below

Past Imperfect

Will how we lived
and what we said
be held against us
once we're dead?

Might generations yet to be 
view us all with enmity
for what we did 
and didn't do?

We really haven't got a clue
what repercussions there might be
on any future progeny
(their drinking water, soil, and air)
Will they believe we didn't care? 

I hope they know we did our best
and they forgive us all the rest.

If we’re lucky, they’ll be kind
and view us with an open mind.
Then, when it comes to placing blame
their grandchildren will do the same.

PSC / 2018-Nov

public domain photo - credits appear below

But, It Shouldn't Be Fatal

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Burn it All Down

public domain photo - credits below
Burn it All Down

I’d just like to know
exactly how
and why
(and maybe when)
throwing out the baby
with the bathwater
stopped being a stupid idea
and became a political strategy

PSC / 2018-Nov

public domain photo - credits below

Sticks & Stones & Swastikas

public domain photo - credits below

Sticks & Stones & Swastikas

 “They’re just words,”
he asserts,
when I chide him
for his heated propaganda
(then he reminds me
of a childish chant
about feckless talk and
broken bones)

 “It’s not against the law”, (he contends)
“to hate ______,” (fill in the blank)
(choose as many as apply)

“I’m a simple man,” he argues,
“but, even I can exercise
my First Amendment rights.”

(And while that much,
at least, is true)
still, I just don’t see
why it requires
a college degree
to presage
where angry words
might lead

PSC / 2018-Nov

public domain photo credits

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Keepers of the Flame

public domain photo - credits appear below

Keepers of the Flame

It’s a fragile balance in a volatile world
a most dangerous profession,
a war without concession.

(On one hand)

deplorable herds elect
to foment flamethrowers,
ignite wildfires, incite un-
controlled burns,
spewing molten matter
in volcanic ire
leaving steaming embers
of a most pernicious pyre

(meanwhile, on the other)

manifold flocks
seek to douse the flame
of every single “other” –
mother, father, sister, brother –
presumed peculiar, dissimilar;
to cast them from the fold
(for not being cast from
the selfsame mold)

Still, there are those
(may they never be defeated)
who persist, despite the churning,
to ensure a steady fire, ever burning.

PSC / 2018-Nov

Public domain photo credits:

Monday, November 5, 2018

Into the Voting Booth

Shhh… Keep it to yourself.
Don’t ask. Don’t tell.
Don’t even think.
Just pause, breathe, feel.

It’s a fact:
we humans
are emotional beings.

We think we think
but in reality
when push comes to shove
we’ll always go
with our gut.

So, close your eyes.
Be positive, humane.

Think of who you love,
what you love,
where and why you love.
 (No hate, only love.)

Then, vote.

That way,
(just between you and me)
you can’t go

PSC / 2018-Nov