Friends, Family, and Loved Ones.

As we prepare for this Memorial Day; a time to honor and thank all of those who sacrificed their lives to assure that our American society could continue, I would like to take a few minutes to propose a little thought experiment.

My purpose is to cast neither blame nor judgement but rather to inspire contemplation and encourage conscious choice in our celebratory behavior.

Many of us will gather in groups, Monday, to pay tribute to our fallen ancestors. Imagine you are there, in that gathering now, well before you actually arrive. Think about this example, and let your conscience be the guide to your personal behavior.

Picture in your mind, the celebratory environment you plan. Imagine the size of the crowd. Think about the personalities of the people with whom you will be gathering. Consider their occupations and the number of people they must interact with daily and the closeness of those interactions. Contemplate, based on those factors, how many of the people gathered will be wearing masks and how many will not. Honestly and fearlessly reflect on whether you or your immediate family will be masked or unmasked. Do you have that image firmly in your mind?

Now comes the hard part- please read the remainder with an open mind and do not assume any prejudice!

Imagine that at the culmination of the celebration, a time comes for everyone in the crowd to draw a handgun and fire all rounds straight up, into the air- kind of a all guns salute to the fallen. Appropriate, since we are honoring those who fell in battle to assure our freedom.

Thinking back of the image you formed earlier of your holiday crowd, imagine that all those wearing masks are firing blanks and all those without are firing live rounds.

Ask yourselves, in all honesty, would you wish that you and your family, friends, and loved ones were also wearing military helmets or had, even, chosen to celebrate somewhere else?

His Master’s Voice?

They must think us dogs

salivating to their bells

doing tricks for tiny treats!

~

And how can they not

when we drool at every cue

playing games they tell us to?

~

Is there any choice?

After all, they hold the cards

and set the rules we must regard.

~

Why must we regard

their arbitrary edicts

when their only care

is their self-serving interests?

Bite the hands that feed, I say!

Ignore their strident bellows!

Exercise our every freedom!

Let us run across the meadows!

On The Borderline Again

His smarmy tongue waggles,
weaving glowing gossamers, clouding hearts and minds
with mists of glittering unreason.

His garbled glossolalia

explains inexplicable,

defends indefensible,

justifies vast injustices.

Before his words, miasmas
of fecund decay shift,
begins to resemble aromas
of lavender and roses.

Venomously,

crass caresses

of slimy snake oil

conceal cuts of serrated steel.

Hope and reason succumbs
to resignation and despair.
Luminous hope drowns struggling
in seas of gilded sludge.

As growing thick dark shrouds

envelop all, he pauses,

draws breath, smiles.

In that instant his spells shatter!

Plug your ears, Ulysses!
There are no second chances.

Panic’s Hidden Damage 

When that panicked flight is run

and you stand bent, heaving for breath,

pause to assay the damage done

in your mad dash from imagined death.

The cuts and scrapes and nicks and tears

inflicted on your skin and clothes

Pale beside those fearful stares;

They’ll heal and mend, but what of those?

They’ll linger on, for quite awhile,

like articles archived away

deep in some drawer, a dusty file

saved to show, some distant day,

offered up as specious proof

That you’re not calm, cool, and aloof!