Saturday, April 26, 2014


Omphaloskepsis means
contemplation of one's navel as an aid to meditation;
thus says Wikipedia.

Mine's mostly filled with lint.

What doth such bespeak of me?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Calling the Poison Control Center

isn't nearly as scary as I guess I had assumed it would be.

After an accidental gulp of some gargled 
Hydrogen peroxide,
My wife said 
I would be fine,
But I called anyway,
Just to be sure,
Because that's what it said to do
On the bottle.

It rang a few times longer
Than what seemed right
For an emergency number,

And then it sounded like the
... what would you call her...
Emergency receptionist
Just woke up
Either from a nap at her cubicle
Or from her bed as her telecommuted day began
A bit earlier than she expected.

Her tone wasn't exactly what I would call
But I suppose that could be because
She gets more calls
From people like me
Than from people with actual emergencies,
(The ratio of which
Would definitely be
An interesting avenue of investigation).

I certainly felt comforted after she told me
I'd probably have no problems
(At which my wife exulted)
And would, at worst, vomit,
Which I didn't.

If only there were such a number to call
And such a kind voice to come to my aid,
And if only it were socially acceptable,
Perhaps even a societal expectation,
(much like calling any emergency number is)
To dial up a complete stranger
And chat about any of life's mishaps or tragedies
In order to know what to do.

Family and friends are nice
For listening and advice, of course,
But wouldn't an unknown & unattached
Be much more legitimate, knowledgable, and trustworthy
to our minds, for whatever reason? 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Beating the Line

How often
does it happen
that you're not the last one
in line,
but rather
the one 
who actually beats 
the crowd?

Well today,
I am that man.
Not once,
But thrice over,
I have beat the crowd
And been first in line,
Only to see it grow behind me.

I wish I knew
How it was done -
How to pre-empt
Where everyone else was going
What everyone else was doing
And do it so effortlessly
As to avoid disrupting my schedule,
Though it would 
Delay theirs.

And I guess that's how it is -
The law of the line jungle:

Somebody will be there first,
And most people will have to wait,
And, hopefully, someone will be that
Kind-hearted person
(Like the one I met at Aldi last week)
Who sees your meager fist of groceries
Is nothing compared to her pack-muled cart
And let's you go ahead.

Or perhaps that kind-hearted someone 
Will be the one who sees your heavy load
of groceries, toiletries, house wares, doodads, and
Screaming child
And let's you go first
Though she only has bread and milk,
She also actually does have all day.

Or, perhaps, that kind-hearted someone
Will simply make the standing and waiting in line
Just a bit more tolerable. 

And though we ultimately can't control
If we're the one who's first
Or the one who has to wait,
At least the kind-hearted part
Is always an option.

So I guess 
that's what I wish 
I knew:
How to be 
that kind-hearted someone,
the appropriate one for the situation.

I hope
I will be that man
And do so
Thrice over.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Our Neighbor's TV

is always on,
it seems,
for we can see it through
our kitchen's windows.

Whether we're waking
at 7am
or 5:30
or 3,
it always seems to be on.

And in the afternoon or evening,
at sundry times and every season,
it's on.

Well, I guess there are
actually some times
when it's off,

But it strikes me as
probably sad