Category Archives: CHARACTER STUDY

Poems in the coffee shop: Conspicuous pronouncements.

It’s bitter cold here, -20F.  Not that that has anything to do with these poems I’m sharing, I wanted you to know that.  

Anyway,  I was with my journal, passing into one of my favorite local coffee shops, Mighty Good, in Ann Arbor for about 20 minutes before work.    I ordered a ‘Dirty’ Chai latte, (dirty is always preferred, filthy dirty would be better) and sat in one of two empty tables in the center of the room that was for 8 people rather than one.  I did feel conspicuous. What’s new and …Oh well.

I let myself peruse the room, without staring, trying to be non-invasive;  It seemed the right thing to do, even though I wanted to do some staring and scrutinizing.  Everyone was being very invested into their computer, tapping and scrolling away, mostly ignoring the rest of life around them.  Most everyone was single and alone at a table.

Other than me, there was only one other person not on the computer, and he was writing music; tapping his pencil ever so lightly on the table. He was with his wife.  How did I know she was his wife?  She was actively chatting to someone on the phone declaring him as her husband for some kind of bill they were figuring out.   He, lifting his head, with affirmative nods while she spoke, still tapping some soft rythmn.

These poems are what rolled out of me in those 20 minutes of being conspicuous.

poem mighty good

Finding ease in the shiver

The freeze grabs at the inhales

Pulling up the inner heat

Exhaling a quick warmth

soon to crystalize

A mask of breath

a suspended pause

held to the minus

A blur to the distances

falling like a light snow


There’s no kidding

You never lost your

childhood flair

for knowing

It All.

Hard to believe

there is a limit

to All.

Perception has a way

of making the world

very small

I wonder if you

can even stand

in that little space

You call larger

than life.

Your life is so small.


I’m the only one of twenty

I’m not on my computer

I see him, writing music

composition of notes floating

in song across the paper

Music wins


The notes of life

Sharp and flat


You could change

your tune


Filed under ANN ARBOR, BE HERE NOW, CHARACTER STUDY, Uncategorized


24th day… napowrimo  …A fun invitational prompt.  Well, it could be.  Making Anagrams of your name.  Go here…   It takes a minute to up load.  It gives you Allllll kinds of words to use for however you want to use them.  Obviously, this is for some poem I’m going to fall into here after I look to the 71,429 words found in my very long name.  So, I’m going to use my first, and sir name I was given at birth to hone this down a little.

Only 6,400 word.  Whew … that’s better.

Me  1956 pink dress blk n white


Be human

pen a menu

cue up a nuance

jab a chump

enhance a jump

emcee panache

un-numb a hum

pace a hump

Ace acumen

name a jam

cup up men

cape a bean heap

ape a chum

uncap a cube

bump a puma

cheapen menace

be a peach

Be Human

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day 19 of napowrimo… FAKE NEWPAPER AD.. really?

19th day NaPoWriMo


To toss some humor in a day that begins with the violent capture of one of the bombers of Boston, the Prompt today is to write an ad you might find in the news paper.  I’ve read some ‘big city’ want adds that make it hard for me to believe they are serious.  They  might go like this:  I have to say after writing some of these I could write a whole bunch of them.  I was kinda tame with them.  What crazy ad can you imagine writing?


Girl at corner of Vine

and Temple your

purple spiked hair

haunts me.  I need

to know you bad.

Freddy Kruger


Come hit me

hard and fast

love me big

you lil’ beeotch



Giggly, strap on

Top wants to poke

at you on Friday



Fatigued, lazy,

incredibly boring,

messy. and often

drooling seeking



Everything about me

is fake, over exaggerated

larger than life.  I’m

an honest lie waiting

to happen.

Make me really.


Handsome, poise

well dressed fella

seeking beautiful

blind woman.


Blind, toothless

with beautiful legs

and great hair

wants to gum you

to death.


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day 14 of NaPoWriMO…The invitational prompt today is to write a ‘Persona poem’.  That would be writing from another persons perspective.  Getting into their mind/body and making observations from their point of view.    For some reason, the first person that came up for me is a Grocery clerk; that check out person that notices everything that you buy, bags it up for you, sends you on your way.  In a small town that check-out person would see you frequently, maybe have conversation with you.  Maybe, notice an anomaly from your usual buying.



I tally and bag their party up

with potato chips, burger for the buns,

baked beans, and slaw for the

little army of fun in the backyard.

In the spread of mustard and ketchup

With a keg and a case of Coke

with plenty chatter, and remember

whens, and look how the kids have

grown, and lets get a game of golf in.


I tally and bag the busy up

with their frozen foods, and bottled

waters, the pre-made chill of a

life held to a race for this and that

and that and this as the time passes

in the head on freeze of nurturance

that forgets the smell of baked bread

and the words of a family at the

dinner table


I tally and bag her lonely up,

with old and single portions

with her Fred dead all these years

and the tins for the kitty

Words that cross and speak

in the up and down silence

in the passing of her time

and the White Zin to make the

night go deep in front of the TV.


I tally and bag the tins and frozen,

the fresh and lean.  The scrub and

the wash, the wine and the beer,

yesterday’s gossip, tonight’s dinner

tomorrows hope, with the bouquet for

the lover and the aspirin for hangover

In this town I know exactly where

I’d have my dinner.





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Filed under CHARACTER STUDY, michigan

In Memorial… to Popzee, Jack Michie 1927-2013

13th day NaPoWriMo…  I think it no coincidence that my Popzee, transitioned the same day my brother did one year ago yesterday morning.



In Celebration Of Popzee

Our heads bumped like rams on a mountain top

The sound of us silenced by her want for us

to find our common

It was the common that brought our heads together

She made our ways familiar for the familial

celebration to bringing us down

from that mountain battle

in wraps of her love us tender

in the wide heart of giving


The bully of you pushed hard,

gave orders

laid down laws,

sorted your commands,

as you saw fit to make your way the way.

In a way that diverged from mine and ‘hers’

In the way that keeps the fear of losing

control of all that hard work

all that sacrifice.

When the bully put ‘that’ hat on in self

righteous intellect to make lesser of

a  poet’s heart in her art

of colourful finesse.


In sweet tender the burst of you in an

open heart,  with a lion’s roar you gave

love’s dedication to all

that made cherish to

what lived so grandly

within your old soul.

Generous in the giving,

quick to stand

for differences in the unique of life’s

quest to how the Grail gave it’s call to

those that wander and are never lost

for what wisdom is within

is the wisdom

of eternal life.


Our sameness made for all our differences

a magnified bellow of who would win.

For her, I laid my wretch down.

For her, I held my tongue.

For her, child of her womb,

I found my way to love you

in spite of your hard pushes

in the ‘right’ of your ways

on the path to love myself.

And on this mountain top

of battles long ago fought

I salute you on to your new life

in Heaven’s luminous light

In the everlasting knowing

that we will meet again.

I love you







Day 8.  Inspiration lags a bit today.  tracking through other’s poetry that I have found for inspiration or ‘just because’ they found me and I ‘followed’ them to their words, into their words, through their words.  There are a lot of us poets out there, doing just what it is I do here sharing with you in their own way.   Feel free to click to the right on some of their links.



I’m like everyday

rising and setting

being high in the sky

caught in the branches

a wisp of breath on a leaf

grass that needs mowing

a nest to be made

an acorn to be placed

a cloud to pass

wind to nip

rain to feed

mossy shelters

babbling brook


I am an everyday

of moody and hidden

places seen and unseen

a fork in the road

squirrelly chatter

arbutus in bloom

A wing pulled out

of cracked shell

called to flight

restless sea

a storm brewing

a womb ready

nebulous nights

a dance of northern lights


I am of all things

possibly impossible

in the happen of moments

in the rise and the set

of EArthly living

in the everyday

beyond celestial limits

of galaxies blooming

like spiral flowers

I am all of that

swirling brilliance

of infinity creation

in the everyday

here on Earth








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BAD BREATH… a valediction, day 7 napowrimo

Day 7 of NaPoWriMo… What I like about the prompts is that they  invite me past my comfort zone, some more than others.  Todays poetic invitation is to write a Valediction.    A valediction is a farewell, a good bye, maybe a see ya later, or don’t let the door slam your ass on your way out.  It can be sweet, longing, angry, grief ridden, funny.



I have breathed you in long enough

All that panting and ranting of your

exhales swarming out and around you

with no syncopation, no easy breezy

not even the beauty of a good storm

blowing in  off your lake to feed my land

lifting my pulse to a gasp of want.


I have breathed you in long enough

Your bellow, and quaint-less murmurs

Your halitosis of negativity oxygenates

our shared spaces and I’m beginning

to catch my breath, hold my breath,

in your toxic presence.


I have breathed you in long enough

And all I want is to step out into

windy, breezy, easy swirl of air

that lifts my hair, kisses my skin

fills my lungs with the freshness

of anything other than your breathing


I have breathed you in

and now I breathe you out

catching the first sweet wind

that will fill my sails to take

me to ever so far from you


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EDDIE WISER… playing the fool real good

Eddie Wiser


In a small town somebody is always gonna play the Fool

Those things start young before you have a chance

To be anything but what they tell ya, your gonna be.

You slurped up a spaghetti noodle wrong at the dinner table

and one long one comes out your nose, and the family laughed

Laughed like they never did at anything you ever did.

It felt good. I felt noticed in a new way.  That’s how it started.

Maybe I was naturally funny, naturally full of play

It all came natural to be this average guy who makes

The world laugh wearing the clown hat with ownership.

Feeling that piece of noodle hanging limp out of my nose.

My limp dick waiting for laughs to give it rise when all else

Fails in my desire to be seen past my label, pass my surface.

Finding my way through being six years old for attention.

Dangling any kind of noodle I could, reaching for the carrot

Just out over there.


Not as smart as Jeff Snow, certainly not as good looking

as Aaron Whittles that the girls drooled and flirted all over

In those high school days of finding where you fit in or not.

Playing the Fool, being the clown goes a long way when

You’re smart about it and have good timing, It’s all in the timing.

It was time to shift out of it, feel the grown up moving passed

The Fool’s cleverness.  Pull that damn noodle out of my nose

for the last time, and just let the funny roll naturally

With out all the need behind it, without all the insecurity.

I wasn’t sure I could do it.  Small towns hold their Fool tight,

whisper all over town their shenanigans.  Give a strange

reverence  and salute to you when you pass, like they think

they know who you really are.  And what clownish thing

are you gonna do next and will they be the target.


I fooled them all leaving town, leaving MIchigan,

going to the Academy of Arts and Drama in Chicago,

writing plays, and stories of small town America.

Telling their stories, making it all matter beyond

The labeling and curse of being more than what that label

Ever had to say of a fool jumping into life in free fall

With trust in his heart in the surrender to deeper meaning.

Marrying the prettiest girl in the world. Laughing and joking

My successes.  Living the dream with a fools smile.

Never eating spaghetti again.


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Filed under CHARACTER STUDY, michigan


Mornin’.   I wrote the poem before I write this.  I have so much to say about curiosity, I could write a small book.  Maybe I will one of these days.    It is a trait, a way of living that I find incredibly important on so many levels.  I really would love a dialogue with anyone that wishes to be curious enough to join me in it.

peace and love people. peace and love.  And… stay curious and keep the questions rolling.




Curiosity… Forget that it killed the cat.

Or maybe the exploration of your light socket

Found what you hoped you’d never find

In the jolt up your mind to heart that gave answers

Best left uncovered, in that untruth.

Doing the Treasure Hunt of living.

Something will get you sooner or later.

Hope was at the bottom of Pandora’s Box


Life is splendid place when curiosity

Explores the corners to expands into the center

The mundane of what you see, of what you

Think you know when without questions

You story-tell all kinds of lies and foolishness

Cause you failed to ask and probe past the surface

Hoping conversation and perception would reveal the the hidden


Life wants to be known. You want to be known.

Curiosity fills the void, asks the questions

Tickles the edges to go pass the surfaces

Stirs the pot of desire that speaks to the passion

That Living and knowing is rich and it trembles

In the pleasure of being explored and questioned

A spark of desire that life is important enough

you are important enough for curiosity to find you


Live a curious life.  Let it kill you.


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WILL FARMER…a love story

Character study #3…



I’ve sat at the counter of Cherie’s Cafe every morning: 6:30am

For 2 years.  Black coffee, two eggs scrambled, with ham and

Onions,  potatoes crispy with chopped peppers cooked well

Mixed in, and white toast with butter on the side.


Cherie works the counter every morning, bright and cheery.

With her wide brown eyes sparkling and her one dimple flexing.

Brown hair all shiny in a knotted up pony tail at the back

of her head with a pair if black lacquered chopstick securing it.

She flows effortlessly behind the counter all smiles and

‘Hello how are ya, what can I get ya?  You got it. I’m on it.”


Cheery Cherie, that’s what I call her with a wink and nod.

I watch her in her just above the knee black skirt, and

tidy white blouse covered with some crazy colored apron

with endless pockets and pens of every colour clipped to it.

I think she’s got more aprons than nails at the hardware.

I guess you’d call it her signature style, her unique look.

I wish she’d let that long ponytail of hers swing free.

I wish she’d notice me other than ‘Hey Will, you havin’

the same?”  As she sets my black coffee in front of me

Giving me her movie star smile making my heart skip.


I say “Cherie, I’m gonna change it up this morning.

I’m gonna put some cream in my coffee.  I want my eggs

Sunny side up, with wheat toast slathered in butter, and

I want my bacon crispy, and give me some black berry jam.”

She gives a little gasp, hands on hips, some of the hair

from her ponytail flicking loose by her face and she says,

“Will, Will Farmer are you alright?  You sleep funny or somethin’?”

I say, “Nope, time to change it up, time to move along Cherie,

I’m boring, dull, and I have had enough of it.”


I pass her the Hallmark card I bought for her over a year ago

kept in the window flap of my truck.  My heart is out of my chest

Into her face, racing on this new stretch of highway I just got on.

“For me, Will?”  Her face all full of question and seriousness.

All I can say is, “Yep, for you Cherie, only you.”

She turns her back to me, folding herself around it in the opening of it.

It’s then I notice the silence in the Cafe against the thud of my heart beat

I turn just a bit to see everyone looking at me, then her, forks and spoons

Suspended in mid air, in slow motion while I hold my breath.


She wraps her arms around my waist, I settle back into the heat of her.

Her warm breath flutters on my neck, up to my ear in a restless shiver.

Heaven opens and the voice of an angel caresses my hungry heart.

“Will Farmer, what took you so long?”










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