MAP 60

This week's theme: What are you doing New Year's Eve.

Thanks to all who have generously offered your poetry.


#61: New Year's Resolutions: Honey, I promise to change my lowdown ways

#62: Cartwheel-Challenged Poets

I've been holding onto poems for the right time to squeeze them in. Hey, I can run them now!

They have absolutely nothing to do with this week's theme. Well, except the last poem.

1. Rob Siciliano of Toronto has spent some time in Brazil this year. Here's an upbeat poem in English/Portuguese

Perpetual Samba

I fell into the rhythm and never turned back

Stepped into this circle and never got out

IT CAME, a flood in my blood infused in my veins

This earthquake sent me in a daze

These people and their beautiful ways

Their passion for life

Twenty, thirty irrepressible hearts and minds set on one thing

Living and breathing and beating

Spitting fire down on us was the sun

We were hitting the drums

In this possessed body a clock

A pulse that never stops

Still it goes even in my sleep

When I'm washing the dishes

Singing and walking the streets

This perpetual samba.

Caiu dentro o ritmo e nao saiu

Entrei nesta roda e jamais deixei

Chegou, entrou no sangue como uma ribeira

Gente boa e as suas lindas maneiras

Este terremoto umano

Vente, trente coracoes e mentes irrepressiveis, obstinados

Vivendo, respirando, batendo, tocando

O sol cuspindo fogo em cima de nos

No meu corpo trasformado possuido

Agora dentro de mim e nao acaba

E continua no meu sonho

Tambem lavando os pratos e andando

Cantando, caminhando nas ruas

Este samba perpetual.

2. The next little beauty is from Geoff Beardsley, a/k/a Rev. Wyrdsli. Not his usual...


Women are held back by biology,

their bodies tend to be smaller, weaker and vulnerable

Women are held back by tradition,

it's a relatively new idea that they're not property.

Young men, love the girls.

I don't mean just tell them you love them so they'll

strip and lie down to give of their bodies to you.

And don't tell them that they'll do it if they love you,

you wouldn't do that if you really love them.

And there will be time enough for that later,

when you know the time is right for it's own sake

and not for conquest.

I mean love them. Look inside and see their beauty -

even if they hide it,

even if you can't see your own,

See their beauty and reflect it back to them.

Tell them that they're good and lovely and

deserve to be treated well,

and then treat them well.

When they cry, don't run in fear of emotion's intensity.

Hold them and let them cry. Let their tears soak your shirt

for there is no purer baptism.

When they raise their voices in anger, do not respond in kind.

Put Satan behind you and look again for the beauty

and speak to that.

Young men, love the girls.

Because love conquers all.

Because love bears healing in it's wings.

Because love makes the world go round.

Because love is the Alpha and Omega.

Because love is reflected in love,

and beauty answers beauty.

- Rev. Wyrdsli

3. Alice Pero is past producer of Hollywood's Celebrity Centre Poetry Live Show.


Random messages float in the air

like dogs making slurping noises

waiting for their masters

and we strain to hear

Some smell like bothered skunks and

we avoid them, close our car windows

A woodpecker calls to us from his rotten tree

The bullfrog has plenty to say

The poky donkey makes us pull him along

Old people take notes to remember and

repeat questions over and over

Who finds these poems and writes them down?

Or over there

as the Great Blue Heron takes flight

from one tree to the next

warning the woman in the canoe

of a coming message

she would have to snatch from the sky

Perfectly formed, like his wings

spread in a whoosh, flying soundlessly

the poem is looking for its landing place

under that turtle's furtive head

darting back into the water

What should be said?

Here or there or anywhere?

A small impression formed from dew

on early morning grass, a plop the cat left

a hundred different insects

the fox on the hill

or maybe just the thought of you

A rumbling starting in my head

a trembling hand

a motion to retrieve this song

before the sound is lost

an excited jitter, a flutter of joy

as the mind takes hold

Of what can't be held or


A spider's work is easier to keep

her threads more taut

than this fleeting moment

that can't be found in a photograph

But can be seen in invisible ink

or in the pounding rain

You cannot hesitate or it is lost

It has no cost but fuels my heart

An endless source that disappears

and comes again with simple thought

4. From Steve Norwood of Lewisville, Texas, a poem about the “L” word

what I wrote and what I meant

I wrote:

storm clouds that break apart

like pages of rhyme

torn by disquieted lovers

god that sound refreshes me;

thinking on how to attain


with my words,

and the line will lodge itself

in my brain with the

precision and attentiveness

of angels playing william tell

with cupid's least-tarnished


I wrote:

raindrops that cling to


like slender fingers

caught in the baling wire

of my scars

sometimes the captions in my

mind's eye cinematheque

dissolve from the screen

and I am left with vague,

avant-garde images of

rude color and shape

that are not easily translatable

and leave me


I wrote:

a nimble brushfire in my heart

that ravages sublimely,

wanting merely to consume

both the brand

and the flesh

and it does:

I set aside pen and ink and

write within her form,

no subversive pillow book

but a grand, eloquent love poem

that began when eyes met

and will end when

all things end…

I wrote:

another poem.

I meant:

I love you.

5. And finally, in keeping with the theme, my poem. Every word is true.

Honey, remember that New Year's Eve

we jetted out to Southern California

and everything that could, went wrong?

First, Continental lost the luggage.

With taffy stretch of imagination

I could understand why baggage

tagged for L.A.X. went to D.C. National.

Sorry I embarrassed you exercising

my extensive expletive vocabulary.

I was demanding, inconsiderate.

Expected commercial airline handlers to be literate.

Every place we drove in L.A.was three miles/three hours away.

Got lost on Ridley Scott's Bladerunner version of Sunset Boulevard.

Fine accommodations at Westwood hotel but it was no coincidence

the only cable TV channel ran 24 hour back-to-back marathon

episodes of Twilight Zone.

My heart was set on wearing that burgundy velvet evening dress

with antique cherry amber necklace you gave me for our anniversary.

That taxi driver who backed into the rental car did us a favor.

Delayed to make our statements for the accident report

we intercepted the airport shuttle delivering our luggage

and changed out of coffee-stained blue jeans

for Gala New Year's Celebration.

Too bad we missed the main event.

I know how hard it was for you to stop that first time

to ask directions, but we could have gotten second opinion

from some other gas station attendant,

preferably one who spoke our language.

Return flight cancelled, just as we lined to board the plane.

One woman opted to spend the night in the L.A. terminal

after Continental rep announced not a snowball's chance in Hades

finding hotel vacancy in Houston or Los Angeles.

We gambled on reroute to Houston Hobby,

and didn't sleep in the airport lobby.

Made it home a day late, but luggage intact.

That trip was like to hell and back.

Thank heaven for small blessings.

Kids waited 15 seconds after we stumbled through the door

before they spilled their guts

about their escapades while we were gone.

It's a hoot reminiscing, honey,

and this year let's spend New Year's Eve at home.