Christmas 2016

A Christmas Pony *

I want a pony for Christmas.
It’s the only thing
That’s on my wish list.
No, I don’t want clothes or toys…
I promise to be good
And won’t make any noise.
I’ll always listen and do my chores…
If Santa will deliver a baby horse.
I know it’ll be hard
For St. Nick to wrap him…
Don’t want to fold, or break,
Or snap him.
But…
I’m sure he can slip down our chimney…
It’s built of brick and isn’t flimsy.
A pony would fit real easy
(Well, maybe just a little “squeezy”)
But he’d sure look swell,
Sitting under our tree…
If Santa would only bring a pony for me.

Stash 2016
* Inspired by and dedicated to my good pal Ruth.

Christmas Epilogue

Early Christmas morning…
I creep down the silent stairs.
Still dark but I need to know…
Has Mr.Claus yet been there?

Bare feet on a chilly floor…
I make my way to the bright tree.
Yes! He’s already made his visit
And there’s something with a label for me!

Should I wait for others to awake?
Or throw all caution to the wind?
Not much of an internal struggle…
I rip at the paper and begin.

Tearing sounds fill the air,
As colorful scraps litter the floor.
Santa’s used a strong sticky tape
But I don’t mind my unwrapping chore.

In a blink, there it stands…
You know what it is of course.
Just what I’d been asking for…
I finally got my baby ………?

Stash

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Between a Rock and a Hard Place

Hi my friends. Hey… who out there loves politics? Yeah. I thought so. No one except Freddie. Well, the upcoming run for the White House has forced my dormant brain cells into action. What follows is the baby that resulted from that pregnant moment of inspiration. Stash

November Choices

Clinton, Trump or Bernie Sanders…
This year, it doesn’t really seem to matter.
They say garbage in, garbage out…
Sadly, there’s no one to shout about.

Hillary has more baggage that Samsonite.
Along with Bill, there’s no wrong or right…
Eight years ago, she was rejected.
Now, anything goes to get elected.

E-mails, Benghazi, the Clinton foundation…
Mistress Hillary wants to run the nation.
She’s like a female version of Machiavelli…
The things she start always turn out smelly.

Then there’s hurricane Donald Trump…
Lots of wind blowing, while on the stump.
The presidency… he wants dearly to win it.
The problem, though…
When opening his mouth, he puts his foot in it.

Lots of money, opinions and a cocky attitude…
Some say he’s confident… others say he’s rude.
Many of the GOP have turned their backs…
To Trump, their just a bunch of hacks.

Last but not least, we have Bernie Sanders…
Who campaigned with Socialist words of candor.
Well intentioned, with his’s senior citizen zeal,
He tapped into how many of the plain folk feel.

It was refreshing to see the stars in his eyes
And that he got so far was quite a surprise,
A frazzled Hillary tried hard to shake him…
In the end the Dems chose not to take him.

This year, our pickings seem pretty slim…
In November, one of these folks will win.
Yep… not much from which to choose.
Whoever wins, some say, we still lose.

Stash

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The Pursuit of Happiness

Hi Friends… Happy day to ya. I’ve been working on this offering, in bits and pieces, for a long time now and it’s come to the point that I feel, “Enough is enough.” It is what it is. Way back, I thought that I wanted to write something with or about an elephant and this is what resulted. I hope you find it amusing. Stash

The Pursuit of Happiness

Jonathan was a dapper elephant…
Soft spoken, his manner was quite erudite.
Dressing always in a manner eloquent.,
He spoke in language cultured and bright.

Jonathan had attended the best schools…
As a child, he’d been quite precocious.
He always practiced the Golden Rule
But if angered, he could be quite ferocious.

Many thought Jonathan had a perfect life…
Owning a peanut farm, with money in the bank.
Having three children and a beautiful wife…
His lucky stars were what he’d nightly thank.

But Jonathan had one constant concern…
For all of his life, he’d always been a bit chubby.
A lithe, athletic body was for what he yearned,
Though Margaret, his wife, swore love for her hubby.

She said she adored Jonathan’s physique
And swore that she felt he was “a perfectly plump”.
She didn’t subscribe to a Twiggy mystique…
Margret was fond of Jon’s jungle-love rump.

Even so, Jonathan set forth on a noble quest…
With determination, he enacted a most rigid diet.
Lettuce replaced peanuts… sacrificed for the best…
He’d heard of tofu and thought he might try it.

Next on the to-do list… he became a gym member.
Jon went there daily to grunt and to groan.
Religiously, from January to December
Each evening, he would slowly crawl home.

Jogging, spinning and laps in the pool.
Pilates, aerobics, and abdominal crunches.
Yoga, breakfasts of thin barley gruel.
Protein shakes and sparse vegan lunches.

At year’s end, Jon crept onto a scale.
Dismayed, he found he’d gained forty pounds!
Mournfully, he cried out, “How could I fail?”…
His house filled with sad sobbing sounds.

But Jonathan’s despair did not last long.
His remedy… visit a favorite “go-to-eat spa”.
In order to right what was so very wrong,
He went to Clemenza’s, for a very large pizza.

Sausage, peppers, mushrooms and onions…
Eggplant, pepperoni, a thick crust with cheese.
Thrilled from his trunk to his barking bunions…
Jonathan had finally found his long denied peace.

Returning to old ways, satisfying and yummy,
Jonathan fed his stomach as well as his soul.
So what if he sported a round Buddha tummy?
Hadn’t happiness been his ultimate goal?

Jonathan’s journey had been long and trying…
For him, the moral was clear in the end.
Life is too short for suffering and crying.
Indulge yourself… food is your friend.

Stash 5/11/16

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From the Archives… Two Valentine Offerings

Happy Valentine’s Day! I went digging in my archives and found a couple of gems that I thought might be suitable for this occasion of love. I’m sending a great big hug out there to all of my warm and wonderful friends. Stash

Said Barney Bear to Sweet Bernice

Said Barney Bear to sweet Bernice,
“Won’t you come home with me?”
“Fuzzy mama, you look so fine…
Come and be my Valentine?”

Said Bernice, in a manner coy,
“You really are the cutest boy…
And even though you have no money,
You sure know how to spread my honey.”

Said Barney Bear, with tail upright,
“We can kiss and cuddle all the night.
Come… I’ll give you what you need…
Let’s join together in love’s sweet deed.”

Said Bernice, with a slight bear-blush,
“Let’s travel to your lair in a rush.
At the risk of sounding way too easy,
I can’t wait for you to squeeze me.”

Love’s tune consisted of growling sounds…
Their furry love knew no bounds.
The evening was filled with passionate hugs…
Together, they formed a single bear rug.

This was the start of their love affair…
The time that Barney Bear dared to care.
Barney was by the love bug bitten…
This was the day Bernice was smitten.

Stash

While Kisses Are Sweet

While kisses are sweet,
What really pleases
Are life’s little, loving squeezes.

We dream of passion
But the real romances is
In our shared and knowing glances.

There is a fire in desire
But I feel my warmest glowing
Is always found simply in the knowing.

Stash

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A Holiday Offering

Season’s Greetings!

Hi and a jolly ho, ho, ho to all of you, my dear friends. In case you didn’t receive our Christmas card, in the spirit of the season, please forgive my omission. The following was this year’s offering. Have a merry Christmas and a happy, healthy New Year. Your, buddy, Your Pal, Stash

There’s Nothing I Want For Christmas

There’s nothing I want for Christmas.
I’ve nothing on my Christmas wish list.
But…
I’d like just once to be a lottery winner
Or maybe just a little bit thinner
And if someone could come up with an answer
For such ailments as heart disease and cancer.
And if the poor wouldn’t be quite so poor
And if the “one per cent”could help with this cure…
And if our upcoming White House resident
Could hopefully be an intelligent President.
And if we could stop earth’s global warming…
The same for earthquakes and El Niño storming.
And if we might have clean air, water and dirt…
And if we could finally have lasting peace on earth.

Happy Holidays

Alexis and Stash

Most of my readers prefer holiday poems that are light hearted, optimistic and happy. My most loyal followers have told me this in not so many words. But I kinda like to walk the offbeat and sometimes quirky side of the street. What follows is another type of holiday offering. Stash

Santa’s Tired

Santa’s tired of being a fat, old man.
He wants to be thin and to get a tan.
The North Pole makes his weary joints ache…
He needs a break, for goodness sake.

A mid-life crisis is what is feared…
He’s already wearin’ a lumberjack beard.
But that bright red suit… it’s gotta go.
Along with the ice, the wind and snow.

And then there’s a matter of Santa’s wife.
She’s not too happy… there’s plenty of strife.
“It’s always ‘the children’ but what of us?!”
Usually devoted, lately she’s making a fuss.

Mama Claus is fed up with her elves..,
“It’s time that they took care of themselves!”
Then there’s the deer and all of their droppings.
“A constant clean up that needs to be stopping.”

Christmas morning will soon be coming…
Children’s dreams are alive and humming.
The same can be said for Ole St. Nick…
“Pass me a slice of that retirement… quick.”

Stash

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The Wisdom of a Grandpa

Hi, my friends. Long time no see. I don’t know why I haven’t been writing much lately but as they say, “It is what it is.” Hopefully quality will override quantity… you decide. Your buddy, your pal, Stash.

A Secret For Owen

As my hair gets thiner,
My middle grows thicker.
Time seems to have sped up,
As the years pass by quicker.

But wisdom sometimes walks with age…

I have many more yesterdays
Than I have tomorrows
But happiness is just a game
If you smile and avoid the sorrows.

So… here, my little one, is a secret for you…

Contentment is merely an attitude.
Your day is what you make it.
A gift left on your doorstep…
You’ve but to stoop and take it.

So, little prince, put on a happy face
And be brisk in your youthful stride.
Try to sidestep the dark shadows

And…

Always walk on the sunny side.

Grandpa Stash

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Lynell’s Retirement

Hi Friends… It’s been a long while since I last posted any of my offerings. Nothing has bubbled out of my brain lately… what can I say?

And then… one day… a good buddy, Fred Burgos, called and asked me to produce a poem to commemorate his wife and my close friend, Lynell’s, retirement from the teaching profession. There was to be a gala party in about a week. Upon receipt of this request, I went absolutely blank. There was a moment that I almost called Fred with a sad and defeated admission that, “Sorry Fred, I ain’t got nothing.”

I’ve known Lynell for many years and just why my brain went dormant is unexplainable. I started jotting down a few remembrances, came up with a beginning and an end and the poem really took off. It seemed that my thoughts came together and really started to flow, as my assignment began to write itself. My best poems seem to do this. Things just click. With lots of polishing and word substitution, what follows is the from the heart result. There are names and specific situations that might not make a lot of sense to you but I think the warm sentiment comes across strongly. Stash

The Story of Lynell Burgos*
* This poem is based on fact but if truth be known… I made a lot of this stuff up.

Once upon a time, there was a little girl,
Who grew up in a Patterson world.
While her best friends played with dolls
Or went swimming at the beach,
Lynell always said… “I just wanna teach!”

This ambitious young lady eventually grew up.

Lynell loved her mom, Pat and siblings Rick and Dar…
But as soon as she could, she took her car…
Bidding a fond farewell
To her warm Polish/Italian “home-a” *… (*said with a heavy Italian accent)
She went to secure a teaching diploma.

(*Author’s note: Sorry for the bad rhyme but hey, what rhymes with diploma?)

To continue…Eureka! Our girl snagged herself a job!

Working in Patterson was a dream come true…
And it was clear to everyone she knew
That the art of teaching children
Was something that was meant to be,…
Written in the stars… it was her destiny.

Yep, teaching was her joy but then… she met a boy.

Most folks know the fellow about whom I’m speakin’…
He’s Freddie Burgos, a handsome Puerto Rican.
Well, you know how things sometimes happen…
First came love and then came marriage…
Then came Lynell pushing a baby carriage.

They had three beautiful, energetic daughters…
First Danielle and then the twins, Rachie and Melissa…
Time out from teaching… for a while… and then…

Back to the classroom but now in the Hub City,
Where classes were lively and kids could be gritty,
She taught children of all ages…
From the pee-wee little fidgety tykes
To kids entering puberty… yowie… yikes!

Lynell has taught in New Brunswick for sixty-three years
During which time there’s been both laughter and tears.
(This might be an exaggeration but sometimes it sure felt that long.)
During her tenure there were wins and losses
And God All Mighty, there were all those bosses!

Years of Ron Larkin, Penny Lattimer and Richie Kaplan…
All Christmas presents but without shiny wrappin’.
(Folks with their feet on the ground but with their heads… in the clouds.)
Administrators with all the charm they could muster…
Usually plenty of hot air and lots of boss bluster.

Then there were the principals…

Bernie Stark, Bob Boyler and Ed Chobrda…
Perhaps these are names that you’ve never heard of.
(Lynell’s a gal, who’s been around.)
Kathy Antoine-Smith and Vikki Abdus-Salaam.
They’re still here but Lynell’s soon gonna be gone.

But these weren’t the only ones, who came waltzing into her room.

Barbara Oxfeld, Rachel Bethea and Lilian Gray…
They always had very interesting things to say.
The State Inquisitors visited regularly…
As did the starry-eyed child study teams,
With 504 plans that sprang from their dreams.

Time’s running short and there’s plenty I’ve not mentioned to you…
The Three Amigos, “Watergate break-ins” and the silly things we’d do
But you wouldn’t understand these things anyway…
The fashion police, studying the red binders, getting her Masters….
Bake sales, fund raisers and class trip disasters.

But enough of this nostalgia…
Lynell, you’re gonna beat Christie to the punch…
You’re retiring!

Time to exit and grab the “golden parachute”.
No more lesson plans, observations… no morning commute.
Every night will be Friday night, every morning, Saturday morning.
A lady of leisure, you can Zumba every day…
Sleep late and wake only when it’s time to play.

(Sigh)
Goodbyes are always bittersweet but remember this…

During your years in the classroom, you’ve impacted many lives.
Like a gardener, your students have grown strong and thrived.
You’ve built bridges with students, parents and colleagues…
So, it’s important to remember that retirement is not an end…
Because… each person you’ve touched will be forever a friend.

Congratulations Lynell, ya made it! Welcome to the club.

Stash

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Winter Blasphemies

Hi friends… spring has arrived!! (Or so the calendar says.) Yes, it’s been a miserable couple of months… like living at the North Pole… but brighter days loom now on our seasonal horizon. (Hopefully.)

In the depths of the dark and frozen ice age that has finally decided to begrudgingly leave, I started writing a couple of poems. Rather than tossing them in the dumpster, I share them now with you. They were the cries of despair of one, who had had enough. Stash

A Winter’s Lament

The snow came down
Without a sound,
Soon an ivory quilt
Blanketed the ground.

Outside the winds
Howled and blew.
An example of how
The Lord can over do.

Don’t question God…
Or so I’m told…
But Jesus Christ…
Outside it’s cold!!!

Stash

The Jealous Child Within

Three months of snow piling up to my ass…
Three months since I last saw the grass.
Ice and snow and perpetual slush.
Spring is coming but in no big rush.

At the very same time, in the balmy sunshine state of Florida…

All winter long it’s been warm and sunny…
A cozy palm tree land of milk and honey.
The only time folks there will complain
Is when someone’s predicting a morning rain.

It’s undeniable. It’d true. God has His favorites!

He’s capricious in rewarding some of His children.
Looking at Jersey, He said, “Yeah, I’ll chill them”.
Well tanned Floridians can go romp and play…
While north easterners must shovel all their troubles away.

Some may call me a jealous child but I don’t care…
In my opinion… God’s just not fair.

Stash

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Winter Woes

Hi friends. This winter has been exhausting… both physically and mentally. When I’m not shoveling the white stuff that falls from the sky, I’m home bound and fighting the ravages of cabin fever.

Under these circumstances, my mind seems to wander and what follows is the product of this dynamic. This is a worthless rambling of my idleness and while I am not ashamed of my writings, I am not especial proud of them either. They are what they are. Stash

* The yarn salesman promised to deliver his wares but never did. He was just stringing me along.

* An archeology magazine was devoted to articles about the extinction of the dinosaurs. I found it to be a dead issue.

* The astronaut’s recipe for lasagna was absolutely out of this world.

* Selling yo-yos for a living is a difficult occupation…. it has just too many ups and downs.

* It revolts me to look at cows…I guess I suffer from a severe case of udder disgust.

* The sheriff caught the train robbers. He did it by tracking them.

* I was once addicted to pasting stamps on envelopes… but I licked that habit.

* The child tried to hide his measles but he was spotted anyway.

* Scientists say fish talk to each other but that sounds fishy to me.

* On general principles, the sergeant of arms believed in corporal punishment.

* The skies clouded up and then the world ended. A final case of gloom and doom.

*Did you hear of the flat chested woman, who got saline implants? She decided to make a breast of a bad situation.

* The cow refused her bull suitor because she simply was not in the moo-d.

* The Amish farmer had his minister bless a pile of manure fertilizer so that when, at harvest time, folks asked how he grew such wonderful produce, he could shout “Holy Crap!”

* The directions said that a child could put the toy together but I think they were feeding me an assembly line.

* I couldn’t cook the frozen leg of lamb because it was chilled to the bone.

* Snow removal was accomplished with salt purchased through the road department’s slush fund.

* We debated the merits of eating hot dogs. Needless to say, it was a frank discussion.

* The young lady received a Valentine made of ice cream and her heart simply melted.

That’s it for now folks. I hope I haven’t wasted too much of your time… u-m-m gotta go… gotta figure out where I put my snow shovel.

Keep warm,

Stash

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Valentine’s Day 2015

Hello my friends. As you most likely know, tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. It occurs to me that this is a perfect occasion to offer a gift from my heart to yours. My last offering was well received…most comments lauded its brevity. Buoyed by your kind remarks, I wanted to write something appropriate for this holiday and what follows is the result of this inspiration. As often happens, while writing this poem, the words seemed to take on a life of their own. Unlike its predecessor, this exposition is not very concise… it’s an “epic” tale of sorts. Also, my writings often employ frequent sing-song rhymes. Not so with this composition. (Although… if you look closely, you’ll actually find ten pairs of rhyming words.)

Rhyme or no rhyme, I hope you like what I now present.

Oh… one more thing. If you really want to experience the full enjoyment of this poem, try to “hear” its words spoken with a snobbish, British accent… similar to one you might find in an episode of Downton Abbey. This was the sound that was in my mind’s ear when I was writing this little nugget.

Take care and stay warm my friends. Big kiss to you all. Stash

The Gift

It was the thirteenth day of February
And Reginald Turtle was well aware
That he had yet to secure a gift for dear friend Beatrice.
Our timid friend was feeling quite dismayed.

(Unrelenting, a calendar never pauses.)

Valentine’s Day would arrive on the morrow
And it was imperative that he present
To Beatrice an impressive token of his affection…
Crucial it was that his love be splendidly displayed.

(A courageous step…Reg had never actually voiced his love.)

Beatrice, his darling, was the light of his life
But regrettably, timid Reginald was unaware
If this amorous sentiment was reciprocal.
Anxiety caused, for him, a night that was sleepless.

(If only we knew the things that we do not know.)

As it was, this doubt was wholly unwarranted.
Truth be known, Beatrice had always been enamored of Reg.
To her, he had always been courteous, caring and kind.
Reginald’s worries, you see, were entirely needless.

(Oh dear reader, my patience runs thin. In the interest of brevity…)

I could proceed with my bittersweet story of this unspoken love
But in order to save you the agony of disappointed suspense,
I will admit to you that dear Reginald never did decide
Upon a perfect offering for the object of his devotion.

(Fear not, you lovers of love.)

On Valentine’s Day, Reginald journeyed to Beatrice’s door.
Professing his eternal love, he recounted remorsefully
The fact that he had been unable to secure, for her,
A gift that would perfectly reflect his loving notion.

(Expecting the worst, with no hope for the best…)

A most marvelous thing occurred for dear Reg.
Upon hearing of the depth of his affection for her,
Beatrice threw her arms wide in order to bestow
Upon Reg’s flushed shell a warm, sincere embrace.

(Love overflowed as Beatrice pursed her sweet lips.)

Beatrice presented to Reg a warm and lingering kiss.
In soft tones, she confessed that she had always
Shyly felt in the very same way towards him.
She too was unsure, despite her outward confident face.

(In the end, the need for an elaborate gift was quite unnecessary.)

It was a wonderful day for both Reginald and Beatrice.…
Declarations of love followed by hugs and kisses and laughter.
The simple knowledge that one loved and was loved in return
Made, for this story, a most satisfying “happily ever after”.

Stash

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