Poem #41: “Remnant”

I decided to work on the reviews for the midterms this week instead of writing. I have one done and am ready to start on the other one. I need to get it done pretty quickly, so I’ll probably work on that this weekend. Also, Slotomania came out with a new album of cards, so I’ve been distracted by that, too.

Anyway, here’s this week’s poem:


she left
the Sudoku
on her desk


just like
she left

© 2017, all rights reserved.



Poem #40: “Knock, Knock”

Nothing to report on my writing. Sloto launched their third album, and I played a lot on it this week. I don’t think I’ll be playing that much over the next few weeks, since midterms are approaching and I have some work to do for that. I should get some writing done, but don’t expect too much. I still have a lot of revision to do on the midterm reviews.

Here’s this week’s poem:

Knock, Knock

I long to hear
a knock upon my door
.    a gentle rap
.    a friendly tap
.    a pounding fist
.    a palm-sized slap
.    a shave and a haircut
.         —two bits—
even if its
Jehovah’s Witnesses.

© 2017, all rights reserved.

Poem #39: “The Girl Next Door”

I haven’t done much with writing this week (a poem, some outlining, and a bit of revision), but I should get a scene or two done this weekend. We’ll see what happens next week. In the meantime, here’s this week’s poem:

The Girl Next Door

I never liked croquet,
but she did, and I
liked to watch
her bend over
the mallet
in that loose-
fitting blouse, her
eyes fixed on the ball
–and mine on her–
as she poised to strike.

We played often
our sophomore year,
but I don’t remember
ever winning.

© 2017, all rights reserved.

Poem #37: “Ism Not! Ism Too!”

The first full week of classes is done, and I am making the usual adjustments for the Fall semester. It is always a bit hectic going from having no routine schedule in the Summer (when I only teach an online course) to a rather strict one in the Fall (the four classes I have this semester are all face-to-face ones that meet at regular times). It usually takes a couple of weeks for me to work through the kinks in my sleep schedule and adapt to being around people again on a regular basis. Monday is a holiday, and that will help.

I didn’t have too much time for writing, and my mindset wasn’t really conducive to it, anyway. Still, I added a bit to the outline of I Will Be King and wrote a long, complicated scene. It involves three of the main characters, and I had to think about it quite awhile before writing it. The first thing I had to decide was the viewpoint, since that would dramatically affect what would be in it and how it would be presented. After that, I had to think about the internal dialogue of that character, the kind of interaction that would take place between that character and the second one, and then how the third character would be introduced into the situation. The last of these was crucial, since what happened at that point would significantly affect the plot development of the rest of the novel. I had a pretty good idea of what I would do, but I wasn’t fully committed to it until after I wrote it. I hope to add another scene or two this weekend, if they cooperate. I’ve already had a few false starts on one of them, and that usually means my approach to it is off or my subconscious is still tinkering with the content. I’m confident that I’ll get it done, but, just like the last scene (which rolled off the pen when I finally wrote it), I need to think about it some more before I do.

Anyway, here’s the poem for this week:

Ism Not! Ism Too!

The current state
.     of politics
can be distilled
.    by semiotics

and rendered as
.    a simple phrase,
a familiar one
.    from our early days

when the only words
.    we could ever use
when arguing were
.    Is not! Is too!

Back then we lacked
.    the necessary tools
to resolve our petty
.    little disputes,

and Congress acts
.    the very same way,
while hidden behind
.    all the words they say

is the pissing-contest-root
.    of the cataclysm
that claims my ism
.    is bigger than your ism.

© 2017, all rights reserved.

Poem #36: “Lot”

I was busy with the final preparations for my Fall courses this week. I have four of them (2 Philosophy and 2 Ethics) instead of my usual five, and the first one started yesterday. I still have a couple of power points left to revise for Ethics, and I plan to redo the reviews for their exams this time around, but I’ll be doing most of that between classes as the semester progresses. It shouldn’t be too strenuous, but it will probably interfere with my writing.

As for writing, I mainly focused on outlining more of I Will Be King. I mapped out the next several days of the story in broad strokes (about 20 scenes) and developed more specific outlines for about a third of those scenes. So, IWBK is still sitting at ~67,000 words, but when I get these scenes done (they will take me to the first major plot shift) I should have 100,000+ words. I’m tempted to call it the first book of a trilogy, but I know better; it’s more like the end of the beginning of the book instead of a standalone work.

Anyway, it’s time for another poem, and here it is:


picking salt
from his wife’s

© 2017, all rights reserved.

Poem #35: “Discordant”

I’ve made progress on I Will Be King, and it’s up to ~70,000 words. I’ve gotten through the first three days of the story, and the characters will be biding their time over the next few days as the things they’ve set into motion reach fruition. Days 4-7 will probably only have 2 or 3 scenes each, and then there will likely be a flurry of activity as the first major plot development approaches. Of course, the characters may have something else in mind….

I wrote “Discordant” after watching a YouTube video of a poetry reading. Needless to say, the poem was better than the poet’s reading of it.


A passionate,
and read
by the poet
in a dull, dry

© 2017, all rights reserved.