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Long poem by Robert Candler | Details |

Legend of the Red October Run

Dedicated to the 2000 National College Football Champions, the Oklahoma Sooners 

--------------------------------------------------------------

Over fifty years, boy and man, I’ve been a Sooners fan
Watched and reveled in their glories, every one;
But there’s no more glorious “Sooner Magic” 
Than the Red October Run.

The new millennium's first football season,
Excited Sooners fans’ hopes did soar.
They had tasted victory in Bob Stoops’ first year;
Now, they wanted - no, expected - even more.

There was a glint of promise in Bob’s eyes,
Strength and confidence in his every word.
“Our Team has shown improvement”, is what he said;
“We’ll win!” is what fans heard.

By September’s end, the Sooners were 4 and O,
A “cupcake schedule” some anxious fans would say;
Twenty-two days in October would rule their destiny.
Texas, K-State, Nebraska, the teams they’d have to play.

“OU’s October is a gauntlet”, said ESPN;
“Play #10 and #2 and #1…and win”?
So, on a rainy Saturday morning in Dallas,
The Red October Run would begin.

The Texas State Fair at the Cotton Bowl,
Fans were welcomed by Big Tex.
They screamed, “Go OU!” and “Hook’em Horns!”;
But none could imagine what happened next.

Heupel was a dominating General;
The Sooners Offense, his relentless troops.
Calmus and the Defense assured a total rout,
The Coach of the Day was Bob Stoops.

Sooners fans were wild, delirious with glee;
But Bob seemed focused and sedate.
“We’ll enjoy this victory Sunday;
Then Monday, we’ll prepare for Kansas State”.

No time to revel in the Glory, #2 was tough.
Better than the Huskers?  The possibility was real.
The road to #1 went through Manhattan,
And the Sooners would have to win it on the field.

The sportscasters had a field day.
Last year’s “coaching coup” was news again.
Beasley versus Heupel was “The Match-up”.
Could Heupel evade K-State’s awesome defense 
   and find a way to win? 

Again, Heupel and his troops met the challenge;
And as the Sooners “D” assured a hard fought win,
Every Sooners fan’s heart was stirred.
Could our Sooners be “Big Red” again?

Mighty Nebraska, #1, was coming to Owen Field.
“Biggest OU - Nebraska game in years!” Corso said.
It would be 1 versus 2, a heralded gridiron epic
For the coveted title of…”Big Red”.

It was OU’s biggest home game ever.
The campus was alive with vendors and would-be 
   ticket buyers.
Every Sooners Fan’s heart was pounding.
Could the smell of #1 stoke the Sooners' fires?

The Huskers struck so quickly.
At 14 to nothing, Sooners fans were stunned.
It was shaping up to be a long, long day;
And it wasn’t going to be fun.

Quickly tho’, Heupel rallied his Sooners troops.
They scored and scored and scored again.
The Sooners “D” built a Wall at the 50,
And would not let the Huskers in.

Winners, the Sooners ran and jumped with glee.
Fans flooded Owen Field, milling all around,
Praising and hugging their Sooners Heroes.
They even tore the goal post down.

Now #1, the Sooners had won it on the field.
Their preparation had been well taught.
Bob Stoops, all his great coaches and assistants,
Took pride in how the Sooners fought.

Someone once said, “Everyone loves a winner.”
Everywhere you looked confirmed it’s true.
OU flags fluttered.  Decals, hats, and clothes abound.
Come November, the Sooners and their Fans
    had been renewed,

There’s no slighting the importance of Red October.
The Sooners came together as a Team.
No doubt too, without “The Red October Run”
Their National Championship would still be just a dream.

For the next five games, it was simply unacceptable
For the Sooners to even think that they could fail;
And, tho’ Heupel played injured, they won the Big 12 Championship;
Great Sooners Defense had prevailed.

But no one gave these Big 12 Champs the slightest chance to win
Against the mighty Seminoles of Florida State.
The Heisman Trophy Winner was their quarterback
And their defense was touted to be great.

At the coin toss, Team Captain Torrance Marshall
Said to their quarterback in words most serious and sure,
“You took our boy’s trophy”.  Then he smiled,
“Now we’re gonna take yours”.

The Sooners “D” was everywhere and completely shut them down;
And, when Quentin Griffin’s touchdown closed the door,
Their quarterback knew that Marshall’s words rang true;
The not-so-mighty ‘Noles had not been allowed to score.

Yes, Bob Stoops and his Sooners knew the challenge:
To win Each game ‘til Every game’s been won;
Win for Sooners and their Fans the unchallenged right
To revel in the Glory of being #1.

Yes, my Sooners Team goes on and on,
Different faces, different names;
But these Sooners Champions will be well remembered
For the Season they won Every game.

Undefeated National Champions!
Before October, who would have ever dreamed?
Why, just last year, we didn’t even know the players' names;
And now, they’re College Football’s Greatest Team.

To overcome all adversity and rise to every challenge,
The reward for such a feat is being #1;
Their path to Glory born of a Sooners Legend
Called The Red October Run.

-----------------------------------------



Long poem by Prince Rage | Details |

Oppressor and the oppressed

Oppressor and the oppressed.

Who is the oppressed and who is the oppressor?
Who has the right to beat a random person on the street?
Who has the right when to pronounce a person guilty or to see that they is the victim?
Who has the jurisdiction to carry a gun and to unload on a random person because of the way they is playing life's game?

There is a president but he has a nation that needs to be run, there is a mayor but he or she needs to govern protection and education for every man,woman, and child. There is those who vote and those who do not, there is those who KILL for a FEE and those who KILL to protect those who threaten and attempt to poison their feed. 

In the Crayola box there is over 8 colors and how many of them do you see fighting to maintain a piece of land that doesn't even have their name? These colors have managed to get along but why has us as artist slander there good name? 

You may agree we should be free, others may agree to lock them away, the third party may vote that we should have a Hunger Game and declare a winner from each district and let them be reminded by name and plaque.

Will it not be funnier if things went back to being the same before the post-Europeans, before the ice age, before slavery, before time itself? Before evolution, before the industrial revolution, do you believe it will solve the conflict of today? Do you believe it will create a new name of a newer society that is under a different system?

The enforcers enforce a punishment that themselves would not want to see happen to people of there kind, the victim sometimes is the guilted, the drugs may make a person a bit deranged or even appearance may look strange. But deep within their brain hides another person who has experienced a pain that became so unbearable so they hid behind a false name. Drinking, smoking, feeling of looking at trees in 3-D is all the same when you are being called a different name, but let it not change you into something that you did not dream of to be. 

Look at me, I am me, you may see prince, others may see another black person, another person may ask me name and they may read my palms and tell me that I carry. Both a Spanish and African name that I was originally given to from birth. But hey life is a curse. You can argue with what happened in the past but will that change the date of today's oncoming past!

But the most funniest thing about our past is how much we cherish it and pray for its ways to be continued on today. But look around you what do you see... I won't say any name for my name is not even copyrighted, BUT EVERYBODY WANTS TO START A RIOT! I look at the people around me and I think how can you say that we need to bring change when your thinking and doing the same as the person who once stabbed you in the back?

I'm not saying don't hate the Man, I'm not saying say **** THE POLICE, I'm not saying that the president is part of some dummy corporation, I'm not saying that their isn't a war that has begun, but if you choose to believe what you hear than you will get what you perceive to be your reality!

I'm not saying don't go to school, I'm not saying don't drink, smoke weed, or snort yayo, I'm not saying that you have to rob and be branded a theft, I'm not saying that you shouldn't give love a chance, but everything is up to thee on how thou wants to perceive the world.

I'm not saying that if you close your eyes you will dream, I'm not saying that if you smoke crack you will become a fiend, I'm not saying that THERE IS NO DEMONS ONLY REASONS, I'm not saying that if youse look into the mirror you will see another person in your eyes, I'm not saying that the soul lies behind the eyes. But if you believe the lies you will think that when the truth is told you will think that, that is the lie.

There is a oppressor and there is there oppressed. There is the depressed and there is the depression that we all feel. There is two eyes but they act as one. Nobody asked to be POOR, nobody asked to have WEALTH,nobody asked to have POOR HEALTH, nobody asked to be born with ways that needs to confine to limited space.
But hey the more you believe the lies. The more that you have to believe you will be confined Into thinking that this life is a lie. 

There will be battles, but instead of battling and slandering. Why don't we make our voices be heard like that over a beat slapped with claps and a set of drums. Kicking the  inside of ears.

Let us prevent the internal bleeding of our heart that is beating (BREATHING)!

Fin! 


Long poem by Erin Soares-Anselmi | Details |

My fifty years in a nut shell

I was born fifty years ago on April 10th 1964
Looking back through the years I began to explore

My mama said when it was time for me to be born
I decided to come early and fast in the wee morn

Born five week premature with jaundice I had to stay
High fevers, convulsions and even a coma would come my way

But by the grace of God I made it through each and every one
I could have died before my life really started or even begun.

And through my fifty years God has shown me grace and mercy 
As I look back I’m so glad he loved me and thought of me worthy
 
I remember my first home in Hayward on Burr way
Memories are a little foggy but my sense of home will stay 

Moved to Dixon when I was just four years old
To a big beautiful house where my life started to unfold

This would be the place I would meet my life long best friend
She was playing in our backyard the first day we moved in.

So many memories in this house in Dixon on Marvin way
 A Baby deer named Bambi and our first dog named Maggie mae

My life sized doll house my parents gave me as a birthday surprise
I would spend hours in there with my plastic appliances making mud pies

Life was blissful and I had not a care in the world I was living
Until the day my parents sat us down and said they were splitting

I just remember crying and in total shock this was happening
My parents would no longer be together my whole life unraveling 

We ended up moving to a two story house with mice and peeling paint
Mom worked long hours to feed us four kids who showed no restraint

My mom struggled to balance work and being home with us four
Soon my brothers moved to dads who’s idea was it I’m not sure

My dad died August 19th 1979 at the age of forty from a massive heart attack
I didn’t know then how this would change my life but now can see its full impact

 My teen years were cut short because I decided to become a mom
How scared I was to have to drop “mom, I’m pregnant” bomb

Have you ever heard of the song “Going to the chapel of love?”
Married now at seventeen feeling all grown up; well sort of.


On January 2nd 1982 my daughter Melinda was born fuzzy & screaming
Didn’t know what I was really get into, I must have been dreaming

She was the first baby born of the year and was the winner of two contests
So many prizes couldn’t collect them all but we sure tried to do our best

Isn’t it funny how you imagine how it would all work out in your young mind?
But then reality sneaks up on you and smacks you hard on your behind.

Now a single mother at the age of nineteen and moved back in with my mom
 And throughout my life I will make poor decisions but no need to write every wrong

Pregnant at twenty with my son Joshua and Melinda now two almost three
I didn’t know what I was going to do but knew they deserved better than me

This you see will be the hardest thing I would ever have to do in my life
I chose to give Josh new parents whom I lived with until I said goodbye

I was blessed to have pictures and letters sent through his growing up years
I remember the first letter I received from Josh I was so nervous eyes filled with tears

My son Brandon was born on my mom’s birthday he was my biggest and my last
He was my little dare devil and escape artist who was always trying to get past

He would like to climb out of his crib and sneak out the front door for a stroll
I chained and locked the door and even barred the windows thinking I was in control

Till one day two police officers were at my door wanting to see him and talk to me, I guess
They said a neighbor called out of concern and then the police threaten me with CPS.

I have been married more than my fair share to tell the truth and it’s hard to admit
 I have walked down the aisle six times and finally found the one to whom I commit

TJ is my husband who I met six years ago and have been married to him for three
Unable to have children of his own he now is known fondly as Dad, Padre and Papa T

My grandchildren make me smile just thinking of them and oh how I miss their precious faces
I have eight all together and love each and every one so much my heart had to grow extra spaces

As I look through my mind’s eye and examine my past adventures, blessings and sorrows
I have come to realize to cherish each and every moment because no time can be borrowed



My fifty ….. In a nut shell.

 


 


Long poem by Roy Jerden | Details | . You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/cruisin_the_drag_412689' st_title='Cruisin' the Drag'>

Cruisin' the Drag

Sipping cherry limeade, driving in the car parade, 
we're cruising in the Lone Star state.
Didn't want a bucket seat; the thing it couldn't beat, 
was sitting up close to your date.
One hand on the wheel of daddy’s Oldsmobile, 
my arm around my brown-eyed girl,
feeling pretty sporty, radio on Top Forty, 
I was cooler than the Duke of Earl.

The lady of the cruise had her penny loafer shoes; 
her bobby socks were turned down twice.
With a little eyeliner, she couldn't be much finer,
too much and it wouldn't be nice.
There’d be no wild oats under those petticoats;
she’d never go all the way...
just a perfect flip-up 'do and cute look number two
practiced in the mirror all day.

Hear those tires squeal when I make the rubber peel
for the fly-boys waiting on the bus,
to take them to the base where they don't feel out of place,
not cruising like the rest of us.
I was the drag's head honcho as we pulled across the Concho
and we saw the lights along the riverside.
We'd had quite a lark there at Neff's amusement park,
playing Putt-Putt and going on a ride.

The cheerleader squad rode a killer hot rod
with a spinner on every rim,
a perfect tuck and pleat on every single seat,
courtesy of Wanda's Auto Trim.
Candy apple red, it would really knock you dead;
it was a drop-top Pontiac.
One was there to steer and three were in the rear
posing up on the back.

Those football beauty queens in their skin-tight Levi jeans
were followed by their biggest fan.
Checking out those lasses in his Buddy Holly glasses 
was the nerdy little Aqua Velva man.
In his stainless steel braces he grinned up at their faces;
they iced him with a haughty air.
He never would forget it; they would later on regret it
when he became a multi-millionaire.

A four girl bevy in a big finned Chevy 
were riding west on Sherwood Way,
four guys right behind in a pick-up state of mind,
all ready to make their play.
Thought they were the smartest cruising pick-up artists,
but those gals were pretty astute.
When they stopped and the guys started telling all their lies,
the chicks started putting on the cute.

We turned the car around and headed back downtown,
cruising down the boulevard.
Stay cool daddio, bear right at El Patio,
and take it down Beauregard.
There were lots of pleated skirts and those button-down shirts.
The flattops were everywhere galore.
From a Lincoln Continental, we heard an instrumental,
Mister Acker Bilk's “Stranger on the Shore”.

We slowly pulled through BJ’s, listening to the deejay’s 
announcement of the next hit song.
Leaning on their doors with their Brylcreem pompadours,
two hoods were playing Mr. Wrong.
Completing their disguise, they slouched with narrowed eyes
and did their best at looking mean.
With a twist of his pelvis, one was doing Elvis.
The other did a fine James Dean.

Like a sweet potato vine, the bride of Frankenstein 
was entwined around the Marlboro man.
With the passion of their make out, they should have gotten takeout 
and opted for a bigger floor plan.
With her black beehive hair and his fancy western wear,
they were putting on quite an awesome scene.
I had to give a chuckle at his huge silver buckle,
but those M.L. Leddy boots looked mighty keen.

I pulled the Olds on through, and we bid BJ’s adieu,
and I put us back onto the street.
With those four whitewall tires, we made for McIntire's
to get ourselves a bite to eat.
We stopped for some fuel, over near the school,
in those days they came right out to you.
Best place on Earth, ‘cause with a dollar’s worth,
they’d check your oil and clean your window too.

The drive-in, painted green, was quite the social scene
with people mingling car to car.
Everyone was caring; the drinks were all for sharing,
(especially when in a mason jar).
She ate a big banana split, and then left me for a bit
to comfort an old friend not feeling right.
A moment more to linger with that final steak finger,
then I took her home and called that one a night.

That was many years ago, but some things you don’t outgrow,
and I think back to when I was a teen.
When doors were left unlocked, and children safely flocked,
unchaperoned at night on Halloween.
And sometimes at night, when the stars are big and bright,
and I’m deep in a Texas state of mind,
I think of that lass who was in my high school class,
And I wonder if she thinks of me in kind.

August 10, 2012


Long poem by Robert Stoner Jr | Details |

Scene Of The Crime II - Chapter 1 - The Crime



This time of night the precinct’s screwed down tight,
you can actually smell the exhaustion, ripe, smoke covered.
The last echoing tap, tap, taps of the long days reports 
are being hammered out on old, black, worn city machines.

A skeleton crew on duty, the dregs, no ladder climbers here,
we do the dirty work, night shift duty, no families at home.
No hot dates or burning romances for those in this room,
this is police work, on duty, we work the crime mill.

Sitting at my desk, chair’s damn hard and unforgiving, like me.
I spend way more time rolling this old chair than I like,
I need a nice soft cushion, oh how the boys would love that.
I’m just another underpaid, over worked flatfoot for the city.

Coffee’s burning on the hot plate, a day old sandwich in my gut.
That sandwich was staler than my sorry attitude at this hour.
Midnight shift today on city  homicide, my beat, my life.
Count Basie smoothin’ the blues on some distant radio, love the blues.

I’m just pushin’ paper, countin’ the hours and minutes 
till some stooge does the dirty, never fails, life in the city.
The witching hour is about to chime, crimes time to run free,
tick toc, tick toc, Sally drops the paper work on my desk.

Check out woman’s body, found in alley behind Kit Kat Klub,
suspected murder, scene secured by cities finest.
Boys in blue waiting for homicide detective to sign off on case;
that’s me, homicide detective, and I’m damn sure a case.

Grab my trusty overcoat, fedora and side kick, 38 police special.
Sign out an unmarked car and a ride into the night, scene of the crime.
Across town into the club district, bars and dance clubs,
not a mom and pop neighborhood, concrete and neon.

Not my first trip to these streets, here’s the cheese for the night rats.
Not much traffic, week night, workin’ class bedded down.
Depends what work your into, hookin’,  a bit o’ B and E,
just more night work for some poor sap like me.

Kit Kat Klub turns out to be another juke joint beer parlor.
They’re all the same, same bored people, same sad stories, 
different names, different faces but all the same.
Another beer soaked alley, another face down body, old song.

Woman, white mid thirties, medium brown hair, average height,
dark print dress, black flats, no outstanding features.
Face down in the alley dirt, matted blood on back of head,
blood smear on wall head high, took a dive into the wall.

First officer on scene, veteran officer, fills me in,
victim dead maybe an hour, not much longer, body’s fresh.
Woman’s body was found by fella leaving the bar,
the witness heard an argument around corner in alley.

He heard a scuffle, a man ran from the ally to a car down the block,
mid forties Chevy sedan, dark color, too dark to read the plates.
The woman’s purse was found emptied into dirt, usual gal crap,
wallet was empty, torn apart and thrown  aside. 

Drivers license says victims name is Julie Wren,
local address, local dead girl now.
I know most of the city workin’ girls,
this is a fresh face, not a workin’ girl of this city.

Coroner loads body into meat wagon for ride downtown,
inside I question the bar keep about a brunette in a print dress.
“Yes, she was sitting at a table in the back, alone, 
a gent walked in, sat with her for a bit, started arguing.”

Tall light hair, mustache and a scar under his right eye,
walked straight to the door and left, unfamiliar, no name.
No one in the bar knew them or would say they did,
see nothing, say nothing, that keeps you alive in this town.

Back to the station and my desk, chair and typewriter,
grab a cup of that old black coffee, life’s blood to a night cop.
Ash trays full of burnt Camels, another joins the cause,
feed the old typewriter fresh paper as I have endless times.

Tap, tap, tap, forms to fill out, evidence to sift, damn reports, 
need the coroners report, nothing from tombs till morning.
Too early to make assumptions, need the facts, just the facts,
another night, another case to crack, what I do best.


 ©
4/14/15
Form: Prose
time frame - 1940's


Long poem by Scribbler Of Verses | Details |

A Story My Mother Told Me

someone always told me this with tears in her eyes...


(for Lata Sethi's late-mother, who was my mother’s ‘sister’ and who took us all into her heart, and for Lata and Ravi Sethi of Defence Colony, New Delhi)


a wife left South Africa in the 1960’s to join her husband 
who was in exile at the time...

in 1970 the husband was sent by the African National Congress to India to be its representative there...

the husband and wife spent two years in Bombay...

one afternoon the husband fell and broke his leg...

the wife knocked on their neighbour’s door, in an apartment complex in Bombay

the neighbour was an old Punjabi lady...

the wife asked the neighbour for a doctor to see to the injured husband...

a Parsi ‘Bone-Setter’ was promptly summoned...

the husband still recalls his anxiety of seeing ‘Bone-Setter’ written on the Parsi gentleman’s bag...

by the way, the ‘Bone-Setter’ worked his ancient craft and surprisingly for the husband, his broken leg healed quite soon...

but still on that day, while the ‘Bone-Setter’ was seeing to the husband...

the wife and the old Punjabi lady from next door got to talking about this and that and where these new Indian-looking wife and husband were from as their accents were clearly not local...

the wife told the elderly Punjabi lady that the husband worked for the African National Congress of South Africa and had left to serve the ANC from exile...

and that they had left their two children behind in South Africa and that they were now essentially political refugees...

the Punjabi lady broke down and wept uncontrollably...

she told the foreign woman that she too had had to leave her home in Lahore in 1947 and flee to India with only the clothes on her back when the partition of the subcontinent took place and Pakistan was formed and at a time when Hindus from Pakistan fled to India and vice versa...

the Punjabi lady then asked the foreign woman her name...

‘Zubeida’, but you can call me ‘Zubie’...

the Punjabi woman hugged Zubie some more, and the two women, seperated by age and geography, wept, sharing a shared pain...

the Punjabi woman told Zubie that she was her ‘sister’ from that day on, and that she felt that pain of exile and forced migration and what being a refugee felt like...

Zubie and her husband Mosie became the closest of friends with the Hindu Punjabi neighbours who were kicked out of Pakistan by Muslims...

then came the time for Mosie and Zubie to leave for Delhi where the African National Congress office was based...

the elderly Punjabi lady and Mosie and Zubie said their goodbyes...

a year or two later, the elderly Punjabi lady’s daughter Lata married Ravi Sethi and the couple moved to Delhi...

the elderly Punjabi lady called Zubie and told her that her daughter was coming to Delhi to live and that she had told Lata, her daughter that she had a ‘sister’ in Delhi...

Lata and Ravi Sethi then moved to Delhi...

This was in the mid-1970’s...

Lata and Zubie became the closest of friends and that bond stayed true, and stays true till today, though Zubie is no more, and the elderly Punjabi lady is no more...

the son and the husband still have a bond with Lata and Ravi Sethi...

a bond that was forged between Hindu and Muslim and between two continents across the barriers of creed and time...

a bond strong and resilient, forged by the pain and trauma of a shared experience...

and that is why, and I shall never stop believing this, that hope shines still, for with all the talk of this and of that, and of that and of this, there will always be a simple woman, somewhere, anywhere, who would take the ‘other’ in as a sister, a fellow human...

and that is why there will always be hope...
hope in the midst of this and of that and of that and of this...

hope...


(for Lata Sethi's late-mother, who was my mother’s ‘sister’ and who took us all into her heart, and for Lata and Ravi Sethi of Defence Colony, New Delhi)


Long poem by Robert Candler | Details | . You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/went_fishin_547715' st_title='Went Fishin''>

Went Fishin'


Submitted to the "Gone Fishin" contest
------------------------------------------------

Trollin’ the islands at Texoma,
It was April, 1964.
New rod and reel in hand,
I’d NEVER been fishing before.

A Garcia 2510T casting rod.
The reel, a Mitchell 301,
Plus hand-selected worms and lures…
I was ready to have some fun.

My teacher, a master fisherman,
Had fished all over the earth...
From trout in Austrian mountain streams
To sea bass just west of Perth.

He showed me all the basics,
Including how to tie a lure.
“No snaps. They’re no good.
Tie’em on…just to be sure.”

He made me practice casting.
“Take aim with your rod’s tip 
Take her back - ten, eleven, twelve, one;
Smoothly return to ten… with just a little flip.”

While I practiced the casting motion,
He said, “Large Mouths will be jumpin’ bugs.
Water’s bubblin’ with Sand Bass spawnin’.
You’ll know the difference if one gives you a tug.”

As we drifted around the islands,
He said, “I think you’re ready.”
So, I picked a lure, a pretty Heddon;
And tied her on.  My hands were steady.

Yellow with black dots and a weed guard. 
A streamer tail and double treble hooks.
Who knew if she would do the job,
But I liked the way she looked.

As I tied her on, I looked around
For a likely place for my first cast.
Magazine pictures always showed weeds
In the background of a striking Bass.

So, I picked a reed bed in the shallows;
Threw my first cast, watched her fly.
What happened next was the stuff of dreams.
We couldn’t believe our eyes. 

About eighteen inches before she lit,
A monstrous Large Mouth erupted from the water.
My teacher screamed, “Holy Mary, Mother of God!  
Kiss O’Reilly’s Ugly Daughter!”

When the Bass broke water, it scared me. 
My whole body jerked and shook.
So sudden, so silent, it seemed like slow motion.
Until I heard him screaming, “Set the hook!  Set the hook!”

When the big Bass scared me,
I must have set the hook.
The tussle was on, long and hard.
This fish didn’t want to be cooked.

My lack of skills prevailed, however,
As I finally reeled him in;
I grabbed him by the lower lip,
Like I’d seen Don Wallace do, time and time again.

“Oh, my God”, he murmured as he weighed the Bass;
“Jeez.  Over thirteen pounds....Thirteen pounds, two.”
He took out his Polaroid and laughed, 
“I’ll take a picture of this fish... holdin' you.”

He snapped the picture of me holding the Bass;
On the back wrote the date, the length and weight.
As he turned to put the camera away……
Get ready.  This is the part that’s great.

I’d watched Don Wallace ‘catch and release’.
He always did that on his show.
“This fish put up a good fight.” he’d say;
“Now it’s time to let him go.”

Yes, as my teacher put away the camera,
I held the big Bass by the lower lip and tail
And ‘swished’ him in the water,
Making sure his gills would not fail.

My teacher turned and saw what I was doing
Just as I let the big Bass go.
This, too, was like slow motion
As I heard him screaming, “NOOOOOOO!”

“Why would you do that, Lad?
Do ya know nothin’ at all?
A fish like that... on your very first cast?
Well...Lad, that fish goes on the wall.”

“Well…he’ll be here next year.” I said with a smile,
“And even bigger, I’ll bet.”
He said, ”You’ll make a fisherman, Lad.
It’s not for the fish that we fish…

but for the great stories we get.” 

I still have that lure…and the rod and reel.
Still in their bags and boxes, just like new.
I thought about selling them on eBay,
But 50 years later, they have sentimental value.

You see…I’ve been invited to go fishin’ several times
By golfin’ buddies and other friends;
But for some reason…I really don’t know why…
I’ve never gone fishin’ again.

They say, “Truth is stranger than fiction.”
And I believe that is a fact.
I hope you enjoyed this bit of truth and,
In the meantime…..”Ya’ll come back!”


Long poem by William Masonis | Details |

As Go the Hours, the Days, the Years

                                                      1,

I remember 20:

Aflame with ideas and visions,
A mind unfettered by necessity's constraints,
Spirit open to everything -
Tomorrow held no fears, 
Yesterday no regrets;
There was only day following day,
Each new and with something to give,
And each corner I turned
Led down a new road
Where the joy was ever in the going,
With a horizon impossibly far and bright.

     Do you still see that youth somewhere inside
     When I gaze on you, Love,
     As I still see that girl with the laughing eyes
     Who ran down those roads with me?

That was our dreaming-time,
The cloudcastle years

When we could scarcely bear
The brightness of our own being.

The wonder of the world embraces the young,
And they return the embrace,
But like the children they so recently were,
They are distracted, and break away
Enticed by the next marvel
Peaking 'round the corner.

A part of us yet runs there, Love;
Running and running
Through the endless light.

                                                         2.

I remember 30:

Young parenthood, responsibilities.
We showed them all the light we could,
Let them run into it and find their ways.

Small voices grew to sound like our own;
Busy days and nights fly past
Like leaves blown out of the grasp of their trees,
Tumbling, mixing, moving on

Until at last the bigger voices went off on their own,
Running down new roads
Chasing their own marvels.

Now and again they return,
And we share our found treasures
And fondly laugh together
At Youth's follies and discoveries
And sigh within
At the beautiful light.

This was the time when we were Fortune's Fools,
And proud and happy to be.

                                                       3.

I remember 40:

The time of Action
The time of Challenge.

This is the time we found our strength,
Though it was sometimes purchased with pain.

This was the time of lessons,
Some of them hard.

This was also the age of flowing friendships -
Some growing, some degenerating, most holding stable,
Especially, of course, the good old ones,
The ones that stretch to childhood, and go on stretching still.

And finally, also our era of finding out:

     Our spouses really are our best friends
     How relative time truly is
     Why learning to Just Accept pays off
     Where the foci of our lives need to be
     When to roll over and when to dig in
     Who's a Friend and who's a Face.

The forties were something special.

                                                          4.

So now we stand in the middle 50s.

Less ahead than behind, for sure.

Youth is still not quite out of reach,
But age is on the horizon and beckoning.

Has Age brought wisdom along?

I think yes, but she's holding back,
Not saying much just yet.

Now the light has begun to slant;
There are decades to go,
But the afternoon has come on,
The hot day is cooling ...
Sunset is gathering into its birth,

     I know where we are now.
     I know who we are now.

We walk the shore and look ahead,
Knowing that after sunset comes the dawn again,
After a little rest in the starland between
As go the hours, the days, the years,
Pulled out, away into the great Unknown.

Now we walk together towards that sunset
And all the mysteries waiting there.
Together we shall find them all,
And when we reach the last, the Greatest,
I expect to turn and find again
That girl with the laughing eyes beside me,
Ready to run, and run, and run.



Long poem by Keith Trestrail | Details |

The Store

The rising sun burns like a solar pyre
  From Carenage to Guayaguayare,
And brings to an end sleep's tranquil hold
  Unbending in its gentle fold -
To rise again the indiscernible day
  From my chamber where I lay,
And downstairs to my breakfast sit
  And listen, as if from a pulpit,
Theological instruction in white livery
  Served hot with my bacon, eggs, and tea!
Spin twins - Barzey and Della,
  Not to be trifled with let me tell ya!
Soon lanes and byways beat soca and reggae
  And all roads lead to Broadway,
There the smell of molasses, oil, and grain
  Perfumes the air in Port of Spain,
Where a tangled human thread weaves
  Vagabonds, beggars, merchants and thieves!
Feel the African diaspora in the street
  Where East and West meet;
So mill the halls of commerce so grand
  And wheels of trade where the land
Reclaimed the sea its depths to keep -
  Where still waters run deep.
All that ebbs and flows there in the end
  Are the fortunes of my countrymen!
Drivers and porters, cashiers and clerks,
  Begin their stationed daily works,
Traders and vendors - cries and laughters
  Echo through the dusty steel rafters,
Their bills of sale to ledgers fill
  On the bound handwritten pages still.
Soon loaded cigarette vans roll
  Riding every bump and pothole -
Me and Yankee riding shotgun
  Headed for bandit country on our morning run!
In the hills of St James - outlaws to steal
  Or ambush badlands of Laventille,
Looking down the smoking barrel
  In the shadows lurking dark and idle,
Or perchance make my island rounds
  Up the Eastern Main Road and surrounds;
Under meridian blue sky near and far
  Past the tanneries and abattoir.
The dockside lighthouse shifting sands
  Beyond the La Basse wastelands...
In-country out of the Dragon's Mouth
  On the Princess Margaret Highway south,
To plantation, farm, sugar estate, and oil fields
  Where reap our greatest yields.
See immortelle flowers twisting in the breeze,
  The royal palms and yellow poui trees;
And at week's end a silent rage...
  Bags of coin from the cashiers cage
For the sick and poor who a cruel fate befall,
  But their beaten faces tell it all.
My home, my roots, I did come to find
  But I am a stranger to my own kind!
Mine is a New Age that time begot -
  I know not who I am - just who I am not!
Yet there is a fellowship and a tie
  In the burlesque street that passes by...
Behold the "King of Broadway" Mr Ali,
  Holds court at Trestrail & Company -
That Little General - my "padna" in ole talk,
  A puppet master on the sidewalk
He's safeguarded for nigh on forty years -
  His voice still ringing in my ears!
In the back room, Yankee and Stowe
  Load their goods barrows to go;
Cane sugar, grain, oil, tobacco, and rices,
  Salt and flour and island spices.
Vat, Old Oak, Budweiser, Dewars, Jim Beam,
  And walls of paper by the ream.
On old post-war flatbed trucks that come
  Town and village and enclave from.
Silton too, a working man sheepish still,
  Like a smiling minstrel does his will;
Now inescapably slowed (the passing years),
  A lifetime of service proudly bears.
All Empires are like a dimming star
  And remind us of who and what we are.
But still ghosts of the past dance to their lilts
  Like the moko jumbies on their stilts!
Yet I was born and bred a son of Trinidad
  And verily so I am still that lad -
So is my brief testament to what I saw
  In a day in the life at The Store


                March 1990


Long poem by Frederick Moore | Details |

memories of a Green Beret

Memories of a Green Beret

“Where have all the soldiers gone, Long time passing,
Where have all the soldiers gone, Long long time ago,
Where have all the soldiers gone,
Gone to graveyards, every one.
When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?"

(an old anti-war folk song from the 60's)


Ho Chi Mihn Trail....'68

Ten warriors camouflaged in wait
Prepared to deal a grisly fate
Hunkered down in jungled hell
Assured they've set the ambush well.
In silence they lay upon the route
When 'Charles' walks in…. he won't walk out.

A cacophony of fire and screams
Laid down with deadly skills, this team;
With claymore mines and booby traps
Left fifteen fragged and torn or zapped.
A trail once quiet, now instead,
Was piled with black pajama'ed dead

A kill zone full of empty life,
From M16 and combat knives.
Metallic smells of blood and gore….
Back to the bush, fear to the core;
On the run, escape, evade
This area where the trap was laid.

Bust thru brush at breakneck speed
Thru swamp and bramble, cutting reeds.
They're on your ass, their voices near
Being captured is your highest fear.
If you're caught you won't survive.
They'll disembowel you, flayed alive.
Your final screams, heard near and far,
The price you pay for what you are.

In time you finally get away,
But it was the VC's judgment day
Praise God we lived, is what you pray.
Old memories of a Green Beret


As on and on this game of chess,
Your mind starts crumbling with the stress.
More bloody trails and bloody hunts
And soon gone thirteen bloody months.
You pack for home and say a prayer
For those you know that's still back there.

The sights and smells flash on and on
Though fifty years have come and gone.
They steal your brain and steal your calm
Sometimes you think you're back in 'Nam.
And still today played o'er and o'er
Are vivid flashbacks of the war:


Young warrior's lives, gone much too soon
Dying moans and pumping wounds
Flashing guns in hot fire fights
In wet and frigid jungle nights.
Camps attacked in human waves
Death piled high in bulldozed graves
Fear like ice picks in your brain
Comes with horrid scenes and pain
Prisoners tossed from chopper flights
Blood smeared chaplains give last rites
Green bags filled with body parts
Images not for faint of heart
Fear that drives you up the wall
Soothed by weed and alcohol
Village kids all blown apart
Blood and guts served 'a la carte '
Air support with steel and flames
Dog tag heaps with buddies names
Rot gut beer, Saigon whores
Seeping rotten jungle sores


Now, most are gone, long died away.
While others here are silver gray
Their comrades gone, now mostly dead,
They fight the fight still, in their heads
Late of night, in sleep they shout.
"Medic here, he's bleeding out.
Call in support--lay down some fire,
God help us all, they're in the wire."


I pen these words and I decree
They were ten times best what I could be.
My praise and prayers I'll not detract
For the many who never made it back.
From long ago and far away........
These memories of an old Green Beret





Author's Note: to all my old comrades, MANY WHOM never made it back
...De Oppresso Leber....rest in peace old friends-- Sergeant First Class Frederick Moore
, 6th SF, 7th SF, and 46th SF Thailand......


Long Poems