Best Sidney Beck Poems

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Grey fingers soft as a pickpocket’s,      
Soundless and sightless, have taken the sun -      
Poacher in the kingdom of the blind. 
Guests and ghosts of the realm steal in and out,    
Cozened into thinking that 
Feet pressed to the ground -
Ensure the lost land will be restored,
The theft of the sun will be recouped.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Written   21st  August  2014    by Sydney Peck
For contest  THROUGH  THE MIST

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2014

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"I never travel without my diary, one should always have something sensational to read . .
 . " Oscar Wilde, 1891 

Tues    May  9:   
Just when I was busy with plans for Russia, Rudolf Hess dropped by with  crazy notion of
flying to UK for peace.   Said he bought  some new boots yesterday   for the trip  - 
dead   shiny .  I’d like a  pair like that.    I told him  -  forget the trip   and tell
me where you got the boots. 

Wed     June 22:     
Invaded Russia.   Eggs for lunch  -  hard boiled again -  I hate that. Must speak to Eva
about it.

Thurs    June 23:      
11:00  am - heard Chamberlain on radio again – that dreary voice!  that paper-waving 
droopy-moustached  old gopher!   My small black moustache  is much neater.     
12:30 pm -   inspected new bunker in East Prussia  with smoother concrete walls .   Eva
wants  to wallpaper  them    (nice little red flowers) and why  not?    
8:00pm -  after dinner,  practised  arm-gestures for  big Nuremburg speech  on Saturday. 
 Rehearsed a few ad libs. . . .  Eva liked them.

Fri    June24:      
Rained all day.   Slow day  (almost invaded Egypt) - stayed in and read.      Eva dyed her
hair  creamy-yellow.    ( I’m gonna start calling her Blondy.)           That new german
shepherd Bormann   gave me  -  I took her out for walk. . . . she's called Blondi  too  
 (Joke there  - the guys will like it) .   After dinner we all  listened to Franz Lehar’s
“Merry Widow” again.  I love it.   Eva fell asleep;    so did the dog.

Sat   June 25:   
Nuremburg speech went ok. Got all the ad libs in except one.    Rommel was on the phone
talking about Africa and Libya, and some place called Tobruk. Must make a note – where is
Tobruk? P.S. Must find out where Libya is.

Sat    Dec    6:  
Just read the latest in the newspapers....almost four million Russian prisoners  now.
Sun   Dec  7:  
Those crazy Japanese have  gone and done it. . . . oh  boy, they’re gonna be in trouble! 
Thurs   Dec 11:   
Oh, what the hell. . .  in for a dime in for a dollar :  this Russian war is too  easy,  I
need a bit of a challenge. Think I’ll whiz down  to the  Reichstag tonight  and tell ‘em
we’re declaring  war on the USA.    Might  get a pair of those shiny boots there too.  

Written by Sydney Peck  
for Constance La France ( A Rambling Poet )  -  Contest Name:  The Diary

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011

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Lean  back and just relax
Put on these protective glasses please
Injection  -   this will not  hurt  at all
He says in fluent dentist-speak
Man with goggles and mask like an alien
Probing me like an insect aboard a UFO
                 God  I‘m starving -  no breakfast

Oh , from the x-ray   looks like 
We  need a couple of fillings  
                And It  was cornflakes and fried eggs and bacon

I’m afraid it  will cause some discomfort
But just relax 
I look at the legs of his pretty assistant for comfort
                I was afraid to  come here at all

Delayed coming
Coward for pain in dentist’s chair
Put off and put off six months,   till now  - 
April is the cruellest month*
                Month  of early cherries from Spain  
                And   lettuce from the greenhouse
                And a cucumber salad upon a table in the garden

Like a patient etherized upon a table*
As the alien probes my molars
And asks me about football on tv last night
                Oh for a melon  big as a football  right now
                Sold by the shop on the corner  where the woman 
                Is so her as she gives 
                Cucumber  to another customer

Yes  a bit of voyeurism  sometimes is fun
Dental  assistant’s  legs show nice muscles
As she reaches  up tip-toed  for a tall  
Pile of green  plastic rinse-cups
                Rather similar to a  cucumber

I try to answer the football alien
With a mouth  full of metal
I stutter and garble out a reply and the alien uh-huh s
Disinterested interest as they say
She looks into my face, concerned,  and  I am flattered
But she only sees my horrible decayed tooth
Unconcerned   concern
Now spit,    and again,    rinse,  spit
I am helpless like a beetle on its back
Wearing plastic goggles
Use this tissue
She’s so helpful,    like mother
Don’t  eat for six hours even if you have a good appetite
                Oh those melons….appetite

I am a man of appetites     
No !  I am not  Leopold  Bloom  nor  was meant to be*
My appetites are mostly for learning, for humor, for sorrow, 
But maybe a melon  tomorrow.       

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .


*These lines are quotes from   T S ELIOT   and   J  JOYCE,  both masters 
 of the stream of consciousness technique.  

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011

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What a joy it could be to sit 
in a far going train with you, 
-  to look into the window  
for some time keeping silent

and  in  the  glass darkling
-  to discern your soul passing
among the moving crowds 
and  fields and hills and clouds,

not part of the firmament  -
just seeming,  since the true
you  sits  facing   me  too
in  this small compartment, 

 -  to hear  your  silent voice
hearing  my own heart’s joys. 
It is the journey endless, 
the  pilgrimage which binds us,

for there is  no  last hour.
The train  far going  is  our
unspoken commitment bound 
to  a   future  not  yet found.

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2010

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Always cold in the morning, this kitchen is warmed now
With a roaring fire and my wife working beside me making just desserts
We stand here two hours this afternoon doing one of our projects
Cooking soup and fish for this evening’s xmas party of friends. 

The ghetto, the Projects, contained me with the music of 
The school’s leather belt and cane.  And then 
Parents lost in a fire. 
              That was a tough xmas, alcohol boozy flavored in an
              Empty-bottle kitchen, crowded and smoky.
It was a tough meat just cut today red blooded, now pale in the friends’ 
Xmas gift, the tureen shiny clean. The soup’s              
Alcohol flavored in effort to disguise taste of the firm onion, now soft slop. Next, must
Empty bottle of sauce in …add spice…Oh, now chop more veg: and the 
Kitchen knife peels and reveals their secret inner fleshes,
Crowded and jostling with juicy tomatoes, now reduced to wrinkled skins; and
Smoky, tall, erect celery now chopped into mini-sets of false teeth

Innocence lost in the poisonous smog of Dublin’s
Orphanage hymns and anthems: God and the state will help
Uniformed religious staff and teachers to tell me 
I do not belong - I must reveal no secrets about being
Woken, shaken out of bed, taken (with no word spoken) from the 
               Cold dormitory, scaly hand on my knee:
               Drown in this grasp -  fish out of water
Cold.  A small shivering fish caught in net, taken now from its fridge 
Dormitory for this sacrifice: staring, unfeeling, cold-blooded creature, its
Scaly skin shining on my cutting plate.
Hand on knee, I sit down to gut it, gills first - which made him
Drown as he struggled in the tightened net; and 
In this grasp I cut the fish open - an old  
Fish which was still feeling
Out of water. It seems a silly, scaled creature now, lifeless, staring at nothing.

I lost my loneliness from that hostile world:
She gave me peace and serenity  -
Warm feelings of belonging ; and it’s
Christmas every day. 
                 She is sweet, inviting, colorful, and around her
                 Melt-in-the-mouth music plays.
She is the essence of sugar,
Sweet free-running chocolate,
Inviting me to dissolve all of her creamy meringue shells 
Colorful and delightful, which will swirl
Around her taste  and 
Melt like love on a summer’s day.
In the mouth of my hell, she has uttered  
Music, and forever now,  it
Plays sweetly.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 

Written for and entered in Debbie Guzzi’s  Contest     GET SERIOUS

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2012

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International literati pay homage
To our hero’s literary courage
Matching  Homer’s  and Cicero’s of old:
Dr. Ram’s words are better than gold.

Author of countless gems of art
Always a  SOUP  figure  right from the start
Giant of words and verse to behold:
Dr. Ram’s words are better than gold.

Standards of style and lexicon to uphold
He often to me the secrets  has told
Occasionally has also needed to scold:
Dr.  Ram’s words are better than gold.

When needing advice or lost in a fog
When rhyme is a marsh and rhythm a bog
And  my  poem is stillborn, unalive, cold: 
Dr.  Ram’s words are better than gold.

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011

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I want to mold no one, for what I believe   is suitable for me alone; 
Each must find a belief-path which suits perfectly, but suits no one apart.
Let me offer my beliefs only to show how a  path may be found  -
And advise you to believe nothing unless it is deep in your heart.

If my job as father  was correctly done, on their path  through life
My children will treat others as they themselves wish to be,
And will  look upon each person as a potential brother in need of help,
And seeing another’s misfortune, they will say -  it could easily be me.

They will look after each other and others who may be in need,
And seek no thanks or praise, but do the job secretly with no bother.
Love is shown only by actions, and in the  doing is the praying.
Their actions will be motivated by what is necessary for these others.

This is a difficult path to take and it is the right path:
But path or no path, I love my children - they are mine. And I believe this:
If I love my children as dearly as a father  can, then
How much more does God our father  love us.  We are his. 

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011

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Faces and suitcases with little rumbling wheels.
The seat is hard and littered with yesterday’s paper.
How can these moving actors know how it feels 
To be old and no longer a ticketed escaper?
Faces fade past - abandoned at the end of the day,
And suitcases  are piled in a corner out of the way,
With little ceremony  thrown in the baggage space over the round 
Rumbling wheels of each escaping  Greyhound.
The seat next to every dark window is filled; and it
Is hard  to wave a cheery farewell to a stage unlit,
And littered with unfinished details.
With a regretful breath  I recall
Yesterday’s family get-togethers, kids’ parties and noise:
Paper roses, children’s games, plastic toys.
How can these  faces  care about fault or blame?
Moving   to every other city you can name,
Actors  waving  through  windows,  waving  and  no one seems to
Know how  to live alone.  It’s hard, it’s empty,
It feels like a dream gone bad, the black blues,
To be part of yesterday’s theatre reviews,
Old , unneeded, socially undesirable, unwaveable,
And  no longer  economically viable, without 
A ticketed  reason to exist here in the depot.
Escaper no more.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Written by Sydney Peck
Entered in Debbie  Guzzi’s  Contest   “Et Cetera”

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2012

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CAFE   TERRACE   AT   NIGHT           (Van  Gogh)

Orbital focus of assured kindness and hospitality
From the waitress in long white apron
Where time stands still for a moment,
Where the  golden interior glow of the shelter
Gravitates under  the canvas roof and
Permits a little topaz flavor to anoint  the cobbled street,
Its dark forbidding geometry of the night, 
Its  silhouetted shapes  of blackened  houses
Whose dead windows suggest only a half life,
Whose clock tower suggests the running sands of time, 
While  dizzying stars, circular orbs of cold white,
Stare unblinking at the colors uncertain 
In a neighbourhood of crumbling age,
On the pavement of uncertain difficult cobbles.
The café is not crowded but it is the sun 
For the people orbiting its warmth. 

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2013

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I had a little-nut tree
Nothing would it bear
But a silver nutmeg
And a golden pear.
The King of Spain’s daughter 
Came to list me:
She'd heard about my little-nuts 
And simply wanted to see.                     
Her list was entitled  “little-nuts guys”
And there were guys she’d missed. 
Asked her  if it was a crazy-guy survey
Or an anatomical-query list.
She said, my young man 
I’ve never seen such a little-nuts display for free:
I’ll put you at the top of the crop,
You and your little-nut tree.

Well,  I love to win contests
And be in a top position;
Nothing gives me more pleasure,
Far beyond the competition.
But I’d rather be on her crazy-list and be kissed
Just like Jack Nicholson,
Than on her anatomical-list
And studied by a  freak-physician.

My apologies to all lovers of the original, traditional nursery rhyme.

Copyright © Sidney Beck | Year Posted 2011