for a moment of joy or moments no one pays for, i give myself a ‘jornal’. this makes me rich. try it.

Be Sharp Or Else (for One Shoot Sunday)

litter on the beach—
fleeting clicks of feet,
timed echoes of Coney Island
soughing songs, root-less
throbs and beats
that pump the river flow within or
flints your thoughts
turn into, darting from

the breeze cavorting
on your tulle train
and into litter bins—
snag, entangle, entrap.
Be sharp watching:
your thoughts ginger-dancing
behind your parasol
must free your mind of weight

or else crushing any or all
essences that inflame your thoughts
turn into spits and sparks
you want extracted but
cannot so they rend your being
even if within you geysers
rush and pool in balance—the circus
has not started on the beach

they wait like you do–
the waiting could split you into
yawning jagged edges
for nothing. Be sharp: or else
litter turned sour heads wheeze from
and into spots you believe hidden, pushed
into crevices unknown to you, even
you, these cankered

wounds smoothed
over, but bleeding still
under skin could swell deluding you into
desires no calming breath
could stay these red bogs
within you heaving in wait for just
a drop, a sip,
a taste of pleasure.

Be sharp watching.
Or else, absent head-turns
throbbing temples blind you
to points in the fair—pennants flying:
when does the Ferris wheel stop
spinning? The roller coaster
wheezes by, the hotdogs
at Nathan’s grilling.

Be sharp
or else unseeing, you
slip into some thought
some litter you had tossed
that is you.

Posted for One Shoot Sunday from a photo of the mermaid parade in Coney Island by Danielle Kelly. Join other poets at One Stop Poetry blog who write verses for love, read those of others, leave a word of encouragement and/or insight with the same love and respect. Post your piece on your blog and sign up in the Mr. Linky list.

January 3, 2011 - Posted by | free verse, poetry, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


  1. Really like the sense of watching, waiting, and observing. That aspect contrasts nicely with your poetic descriptions. Very nice challenge response!

    Comment by dustus | January 3, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks so much again, Adam! Quite a challenge, indeed, because the photo has both the contrasting sense of fantasy and foreboding reality. And they lurk behind each other’s veneer of objectivity.

      Comment by alee9 | January 3, 2011 | Reply

  2. Love this! Everything works here, damn near perfect. 🙂

    Comment by Steve Isaak | January 3, 2011 | Reply

    • So heart-lifting in so few words! Thanks, Steve!

      Comment by alee9 | January 4, 2011 | Reply

  3. a very good read…agree with steve…IT WAS THAT GOOD…pete

    Comment by pete marshall | January 3, 2011 | Reply

    • … and in caps, too! Thanks so much, Pete!

      Comment by alee9 | January 4, 2011 | Reply

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