Friday, September 30, 2016

Fantasy Friday: We Squirrels

A rodent came to me, and it knew more
About me than my mother does, I'd bet.
Its gaze did penetrate me to the core,
Although the two of us had barely met.
It hypnotized me, I believe, or did
I always have grey fur like this? A tail?
These black and liquid eyes? Where have I hid -- ?
Yes, look at me, and deeply. There's a trail
We're following into the woods. You see?
Look closer, focus, feel it 'neath your feet.
This is the place we're truly meant to be,
With acorns and such other things to eat.
You understand? Hold on, I'm coming there.
What's wrong, my friend? Now all you do is stare.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Throwback Thursday: The Most Famous Sonnetations

When William fell in love, and love again,
He found his feelings weren't requited, quite.
The lady dark, he'd never see again;
The lovely boy avoided him for spite.
But in imagination, both of them,
Enraptured by his ev'ry honeyed word
Responded warmly to his charm├ęd pen,
In such a way as all of us have heard
Who've drunk with him. Indeed, we've heard enough.
We want to tell him, man, just stick to plays.
Your wife and son have really got it rough
Just as things are. Your wand'ring eye and ways
Are getting old. Nobody wants to read
Your whiny poems, which fulfil no need!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Weird Wednesday: Doggie Heaven

Mariah's life had ended, but she felt
Disoriented as she looked about.
She couldn't speak, did not know where she dwelt,
And felt the urgent need to just get out!
Alas, a giant door contained her. "Aww,
You want to go outside? Do you? Well, speak!"
All she could do was yip; her mouth and jaw
Could not form words, but what she'd done seemed fine.
Outdoors the world was wonderful, with smell
And sound that fair bewitched her. "Puppy, mine,"
A voice said "You e'er treated your dogs well
In life. Now that you're dead, you get to live
The life that those once in your care will give."

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Terror Tuesday: The Room Tone

Those things that share our spaces, but cannot
Be sensed by humankind, sometimes are found
By strange experiments. Sometimes, unsought,
However, they're discovered through their sound.
Such happened as a narrator, by night
Was cleaning up her day's recording work.
She'd worked to make her studio just right,
But still, persistent noise would cause a jerk
Of grim annoyance. As she analyzed
The tones beneath her room tone, she'd a shock.
Such whispers, such foul utt'rances, disguised
As emptiness! Each ticking of the clock,
Persuading us, in silence, to do ill,
Perverting ev'ry talent, ev'ry skill!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Mystery Monday: Her Voyage, Part X

What could I do? Back to my normal life
I went, but kept an eye out for what news
Of Kris that I could get, it wasn't rife;
In fact I nearly missed what I could use:
Some visitors to Nova Scotia last
December said they'd seen, on one cold beach
A fin progressing through the sand, so fast
That they weren't sure it had been real. To reach
The couple was a moment's work, but they
Had not seen any humans with the thing.
Just hoping, I phoned up Cassandra Rey,
My hostess from my last year's Digby fling.
"Is she back in her cottage?" "No, but there
I something hot and singeing in that air."

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Satire Sunday: Publication Day

A small-town newsrag, in the pixel age,
Much like a unicorn, was strange and rare.
The revenue to justify each page
Was calculated with the greatest care.
Then came the week - for once a week was all
The readership could justify, in costs --
When just one article, about a fall
From great height at the local mill, a loss
Of man-hours, not of life, was going to fit.
To print more stories meant more sheets, and that
Was quite forbidden. Not one little bit
Of leeway could be given, so a spat
Broke out between the editor and those
Who staffed his paper. "I don't need your prose!"

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Sci Fi Saturday: A Frustrating Interview

It wasn't ever known what caused the end
Of that good ship, Obama, forty souls
And unknown cargo. Zadok, my old friend,
The salvager, claims to know the whole
Sad story, but he'll only tell his tale
When fabulously drunk, on planet-leave,
And at his fav'rite dive. O'er bad synth-ale,
That blots his mind, that soaks into his sleeve,
He darkly hints of solar flares and worse.
"I found 'er," he will say. "What are the odds
That she should wind up on Hygiea? Curse
That barmaid, I am dry! What's that? Ye gods!
It's true. Nobody lived except one man,
And he seems plumb immortal! Bring that can!"

Friday, September 16, 2016

Fantasy Friday: Fish Tales, Part III

As Kleo floated, patient, with her pole,
Awaiting, from line's end, that special tug
That said she'd caught a squirrel or chipmunk, whole,
She daydreamed, watching as a caddis-bug
Lay waiting for its dinner, too. It struck
Just as a pebble hit her on her head!
The larva'd grabbed a minnow, but her luck
Was not so good. Sneers sounded; she turned red
In anger and embarrassment. "Hey, check
The ocean girlie out! Ain't she a prize?"
Soon Kleo was surrounded. "Lac-maids! Heck,
I thought you were a myth," she said. Their size
Soon killed all humor, though, as all around
Our Kleo was a school of them. "Let's pound!"

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Husbandry

Mab Mittel strode beside a tiny plot
Of grain of unknown origin. The seed
Had blown into her hut. She'd found a spot
To plant it on the sly, where none would need
The space. She watched it grow, her careful eye
And most discerning nose, both found it sweet.
The kernel it produced was flavorful
And even lucious. Soon she'd named it "wheat"
And pounded out her little crop, to pull
Its flavors from its chaff and straw to make
A powder. which she wetted down and left
To bake beneath the sun. When she did take
A bite of what she'd made, ideas soon came
To make it better. What should be its name?

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Weird Wednesday: The Warehouse Accident

Zeb Collins was marooned atop a stack
Of pallets, when his forklift driver took
A joke he'd made quite poorly. Looking back,
He could have made a better choice. Now look:
Atop the pallets with him was a box
That wasn't silent, and that wasn't still.
He peeked inside, and got him the worst shock
He's ever had; the contents that did spill
Beside him, all were robot heads, that woke
In unison! "Instructions please," their chant
Droned on and on, and as each object spoke
It moved on tiny wheels, surrounding Zeb.
Next morning, he lay up there, sans his head!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Terror Tuesday: The Squeaking of the Sky

We crossed the bridge at sunset ev'ry night,
My little dog and I, and on our walk
We loved to watch the bats begin their flight
From underneath its planks. Sometimes I'd talk
To Sadie pup about the "flying mice".
She'd bark and try to catch them as they passed
Beneath us. But one night, the weather nice,
An autumn eve of rare perfection, last
We'd see... I don't know what had changed, but they
We'd celebrated wheeled about as one
And flew at us, until we ran away!
They chased us for a mile or more. The sun
Had gone, and they were hungry. Now I fear
The squeaking of the sky, when they draw near.

- Inspired by Eric Orchard and Orrin Grey

Monday, September 12, 2016

Mystery Monday: Ms. Beck Invesitagates, Part IV

"If you would just, now, sign on this release,
We can expose them for the frauds they are.
And you, perhaps, can find a little peace
In knowing that you've helped my firm to mar
The reputation on which they depend."
"Release? You mean, like, letting this go out
In public?" "Yes." "Hell no, don't want my friends
To know we fell for this!" "No need to shout,"
Miss Beck said calmly. "Reconsider, though.
I've done this many times, but if no one
Allows me to go public, then there's no
Accountability. So much I've done,
But this last step is what is needed most.
'The state's best charter school' still gets to boast."

Satire Sunday: Dinner's Here

"I've got the pizza. Man it's smelling good,"
Marcella texted to her housemate, Jean.
"Oh, get some chips and soda, if you could?"
"I've left the store already." "Man, that's mean,
Can't you just turn around?" "I'm hungry, dude!"
The texts kept flying as her Chrysler made
The turn onto their street. "That's still just rude."
"It's three whole blocks. Get some yourself." "I'll trade
You kitchen duty for a week." "Nah, I'm
Just pulling in the driveway now." "Don't be
A mega-bitch." "What, you think I've got time
To be your errand bitch?" She didn't see
That she'd run out of driveway. With a crash
Her car then turned the living room to trash!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Sci Fi Saturday: The Cryptoterrestrials

'Most ev'rybody's been there, but most don't
Remember it. A garden, lush and green
And deathly quiet stands where people won't
Suspect it. There they live. The air is clean,
The water pure. They have no dwellings. We
Who know them, know we'll never understand
Their presence. One brave soul, long since set free
From this existence, once brought back a strand
Of something like a hair. Its DNA
Is earthly; they are close to us, more kin
Than even chimpanzees, but there's no way
They're just some hiding humans. Take their skin,
Pale green, as though they sport some chlorophyll.
I think they're of the future, if you will.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Fantasy Friday: Fish Tales, Part II

Next morning, 'neath the waters of the lake,
The mermaid campers woke to shouts and cheers.
"It's time to start activities! Don't make
Us tell you twice! Watch as the surface clears.
Soon we'll have light to craft our squirrel bait,
And then we'll practice casting. You must hit
The soil just so, to catch their notice." "Wait,
We're squirrelling? I mean, I din't think it
Was that backwater, here. Why can't we just
Go shopping at Whale-Mart?" asked Kleo, who
Had just had her scales painted. "Oh, this must
Be your first year. Yeah, you must be  real new.
"We hook our dinners, reel them in and down
Here with us, and watch critters as they drown"

Fantasy Friday: Fish Tales, Part II

Next morning, 'neath the waters of the lake,
The mermaid campers woke to shouts and cheers.
"It's time to start activities! Don't make
Us tell you twice! Watch as the surface clears.
Soon we'll have light to craft our squirrel bait,
And then we'll practice casting. You must hit
The soil just so, to catch their notice." "Wait,
We're squirrelling? I mean, I din't think it
Was that backwater, here. Why can't we just
Go shopping at Whale-Mart?" asked Kleo, who
Had just had her scales painted. "Oh, this must
Be your first year. Yeah, you must be  real new.
"We hook our dinners, reel them in and down
Here with us, and watch critters as they drown"

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Throwback Thursday: The Opportunist

"The land is conquered! Run now for your lives!
The Norman comes, in fear and fire and blood!
Hide now your children, lock up your fair wives!
Marauders are approaching in a flood!"
So came the shouts as refugees poured through
The village. Dacey, though, stayed how and where
She was. "Where now, indeed, would I run to?"
She asked of no one. Tired and grey of hair
And full of pains, she sat upon her stool
Outside a newly-empty hut, to wait.
When came the Norman horde, she kept her cool,
As there were only five. "Ah! We're too late!
The pretty ones are gone. There's just this crone."
They left her to enrich herself, alone.

Weird Wednesday: Small Victories

They'd come from space; to space they would return,
This mighty warlike fleet -- but lo, a cat
Had swallowed ev'ry ship! They'd have to burn
Their way out of its flesh. Each spaceship that
Now found itself within began to fire
Its lasers. Meanwhile, on a mat, asleep,
The puss began to glow. Its state was dire,
But mercifully it did not wake ere, deep
Within it, came destruction. Now all, free
And angry, did the ships emerge to blast
To rubble ev'ry city they found. We
Cared not to lose our termites and, at last,
Our ants, but slowly all here came to ruin
As none did what those bugs had e'er been doing.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Terror Tuesday: Keep Your Distance

That first embrace on stepping from a plane
Is tend'rest, but that morning in New York
Changed ev'rything. Already in her brain
The teeming creatures seethed, then pulled the cork.
She nuzzled at his earlobe and then spit
Right into the canal. That's all it took.
Days later, when she fell down in a fit,
'Twas far too late. Pause now and take a look.
You know that more than half of all you see
Around you are infected. Just one kind
And ordinary human thing could be
The last you e'er perform. Say, would you mind
Just holding still a moment? Something's there
I'll brush it off. Oh no, it's in your hair...

Monday, September 5, 2016

Mystery Monday: Ms. Beck Investigates, Part III

Each day, young Dukie's footage was the same.
A schoolbell's ring, a pinprick, and a nap
That wouldn't end until the day's end came,
And he was sent with "documents and crap"
As Dukie's mom described it. He just scored
A ninety-nine in physics, this one says."
Ms. Beck just nodded coolly through the storm.
"I understand, Ms. Willis, your distress.
His 'class' has hundreds. None have turned a page
Or touched a calculator; none have seen
A plant grow from a seed --" Jo Willis' rage
Was terrifying. "I know what you mean,"
Miss Beck said calmly. "But you know you're not
Alone in this. We'll put them on the spot."

Mystery Monday: Ms. Beck Investigates, Part III

Each day, young Dukie's footage was the same.
A schoolbell's ring, a pinprick, and a nap
That wouldn't end until the day's end came,
And he was sent with "documents and crap"
As Dukie's mom described it. He just scored
A ninety-nine in physics, this one says."
Ms. Beck just nodded coolly through the storm.
"I understand, Ms. Willis, your distress.
His 'class' has hundreds. None have turned a page
Or touched a calculator; none have seen
A plant grow from a seed --" Jo Willis' rage
Was terrifying. "I know what you mean,"
Miss Beck said calmly. "But you know you're not
Alone in this. We'll put them on the spot."

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Satire Sunday: The Sanct-kitty of the Vote

Lovecat (Howard Phillips) and his friend,
Called Rudyard Kipling, had a talent rare:
For guarding ballots. Wintry Sundays end
In one or both of them (they often share)
A-perched atop forensics sheets galore
(Their dad is in the trade). So when they heard
That fraud might ruin, to its very core,
A Presidential contest -- "Say the word!"
The pair meowed. "You need us on the case!
No tampering can happen on our watch!"
"'Tis true," said Daddy Jake. "You boldly chase
All comers from your charge. You'd hardly botch
The Nation's. Let me call the F.E.C.
And I'll negotiate a worthy fee."

Sci Fi Saturday: Wilbur Mugambe's Fall to Grace

A lot of people claim that they were there
When he became a sporting legend in
One leap. A sport for only those who dare
Is Airship Polo. Many was the win
With no goals scored, as such; a tie-break takes
A final count of injuries and deaths,
As men are tossed from craft to craft, mistakes
Are not uncommon, after all! Our breaths
Were taken, though, when this young, brash unknown
Was flung from Dr. Okafor's machine.
His flips and somersaults in mid-air shone
Like beacons of excitement, and his clean
And splashless entry to the goal-pond? Not
A single ship could catch him ere that shot!

Friday, September 2, 2016

Fantasy Friday: Fish Tales, Part I

It was young Kleo's very first time out
To mermaid camp, far from the ocean blue.
The griffin flight was scary, there's no doubt,
As miles and miles of land took up the view
And they went higher still. The mountain lake
Where camp was set was cold and strange and deep,
But Kleo kept her courage, no mistake,
Until just ere the campers went to sleep
And told each other tales of trout and pike
And beavers! "One attacked me last year!" claimed
Her bunkmate. "He'd have dragged me way down, like,
Beneath his dam!" "Now Bea, you should be shamed!"
Their couns'lor said. "There are none here, don't lie.
But me tell you all of The Walleye!"

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Throwback Thursday: Practice Makes...

The scrimshaw piece -- it should have been a sign --
That his guard cherished, showed to ev'ryone,
Was beautiful, of curious design,
And obviously a trophy. Point a gun
At any man, his treasure becomes yours.
The day his captor noticed that his face
Resembled the most prominent of scores
Carved in the ivory, Tad Dixon's case
Was terminal. The guard so longed to learn
The art he so admired, he took his knife
And started on Tad's flesh. Each carving turn
Improved the man's technique, but Dixon's life
Was short. When Allies came to liberate
The camp, he bled his last. They were too late.