Bad Poetry Contest

Be My Valentine

I’ve got love instead of blood pumping through my heart.
It’s squirting out my auricles and ventricles and every other part.
It’s like romantic heart disease.
It’s like a heart attack of love unease.
It’s like love cancer causing pain,
then metastasizing to my brain.

The Laughing Man

My mom used to bring home men for pay.

I’d take to my room and stay there until they were finished.

You know the story.

Years later we’d sit together on the porch and get high.

“What about that one guy?” I said one time.

“The man who laughed?”

I nodded.

“His name was Stephan. He wanted to be tickled,” mom said. “My only customer who asked for that.”

“It’s a thing, I guess.”

“We came in and for a change,” mom said, “he wanted to tickle me.”


“That’s what I said. Why would you want to tickle me?”


“He said he liked me,” mom said. “He said he wanted me to experience what he experienced. You’re paying the freight, I said.”

“Did he make you laugh?”

“He started by putting in a tape. This was back when there were tapes. I said, what the heck is that?”

“Whale song, he said. I laughed at that but after a while it started to get to me. He had me on my back on the bed and he massaged my feet and then my hands. He stretched out my arms one at a time and shook them lightly to relax them. He massaged my scalp. All the time with the whales.

“He had a hypnotic voice. I was drifting. Then he touched my ribs, high up on both sides. It was unexpected. I laughed.

“He was an expert, much better than me at tickling. I’m sure he had tickled women before. I couldn’t control myself. It sort of escalated. I was out of my mind laughing.”

“And then, like he would do, I suddenly burst into tears. Like a well full of sadness uncovered itself in my mind. Memories. They overflowed. He held me until it was over. I was so happy. Glowing.

“Later I tried it with others but it never happened again.”


For Flash Fiction Challenge


“Where are you going?”

“I’m going out to have another quick look for that bird.”

“It’s getting late and cooling off. Put on your black sweatshirt. I don’t want you catching a chill.”

“Yes, Dear.”

“Pull your hood up. Cover that bald head.”

“Where are my binoculars?”

“Here. It’s a little misty. Keep them in the sweatshirt’s front pocket, not around your neck. You can pull them out fast if you need to. And don’t get run over.”


“Sir, will you step over to the car please?”

“What is it, Officer?”

“Sir, do you live around here?”

“I do. Is there a problem?”

“You’re dressed in dark clothing with your hood up. The light’s failing. Makes you hard to see, and you’re moving slowly and a little erratically while you stare into the neighborhood’s front yards.”

“I can explain that. Let me just show you…”

“Sir, take your hand out of the pocket. We know what’s in there. We know what you’re up to.”

“No, let me explain…”

“No need. You’re the fourth person we’ve stopped. Look for the bird but please pay attention to the foot and bike traffic on the sidewalk. Safety first.”


For the Daily Prompt.

Ganesh Chaturthi

“Suresh, stop watching that cricket match and go buy a Ganesha idol  for Ganesh Chaturthi.”

“I am not stopping. You go buy.”

“You are watching too much cricket. Get up. Go. We must have Ganesha in the house tonight.”

“I am not going… What are you doing!?”

“I will plug it back in when you return.”

“You are back so soon? Unwrap. Did you get a beautiful one like I told you to do?… But wait! What is this?”

“It is Ganesha with the World Cup Champions of 2011. You see? MS Dhoni the captain? Virender Sehwag. Ravichandran Ashwin… The whole team is here.”

“Did you never think, Suresh, that when the festival is over and we take Ganesh to Mahim Creek and the clay dissolves and Genesh returns to Mount Kailash to Parvati and Shiva, the champions will dissolve also, but where are they to go?”

Photo: Lavanya

148 words

For FFfAW Challenge-February 13, 2018

Woman spots mold on new tampon

[Headline, Huffington Post]

If an ice shelf the size of Texas breaks off the continent of Antarctica and floats away to melt in the sea, it will not directly affect my day, at least until sea levels rise high enough to flood my neighborhood. That sort of global-warming consequence doesn’t trouble me. If all the polar bears disappear tomorrow, I don’t care. I rarely hunt bears, on foot or from a helicopter with a high-powered rifle. I never go to the zoo. They say that when you get the kids every other weekend, you should take them to the zoo, but I’ve never done so. My favorite bar lets me park my children in an empty poker room as long as they keep quiet, so I just take them there.

But global warming vis a vis tampons is another matter. When warmth-loving molds and fungi and viruses begin to invade my personal space, it’s time to take action. I don’t personally use tampons, except perhaps occasionally on my “strange” days, but if mold can go there, what’s to stop it from showing up on, for example, my doobies?

Remember that molds reproduce more quickly than we do, and I’m not just complaining here about the lack of action in my life. Molds evolve quicker. That’s why a mold has already learned how to eat a tampon. Humans have evolved to the point of eating at McDonald’s, true, but McDonald’s is not Modess.

I don’t want to live in a world where I have to compete with an evolved mold for my job. I’m already losing out to our neighbors to the south. I might never work again. Say, could that be an upside to this mold invasion?

But seriously, if molds can learn to eat a tampon, why can’t they learn to eat the tamponee, or tamponess? I don’t wear underpants, but if I did, couldn’t the mold move in there and stage itself for an attack? I’m freaking myself out here.

My buddy tells me that there are molds that can talk. I think that’s what he said. How is that even possible? I guess molds must have mouths or how could they eat? But how tiny those mouths must be. When they talk, you’d be lucky to hear even a squeak. Plus, once you pull the tampon, I’m not wanting to hear the mold’s comments. Or get my ear near it, neither.

Why can the mold feel the global warming and I can’t, anyway? I’ve been spending my nights in the car and it’s cold out there. They say that there are more tornadoes, or is it hurricanes, but all I’m seeing is rain. Cold rain. Cold rain and mold growing on everything.


Why isn’t “one” pronounced “on,” as in awning, or “own” as in only?

Why “won”? Where did that w come from?

No one knows. You could look it up.

But my good friend and linguist Cornelis Tromp (be sure to pronounce it “tromp”), is publishing a paper explaining his theory, proven by experiment, like in science, to be true.

So I give you the scoop here. Or is it, I give you the straight poop here?

“One” used to be pronounced like, say, the on in onanist, that is, with the “oh” sound, like in own. The word onanist used to be pronounced with the on like in onion (uh), but folks who were close to onanists noticed that while they started out going “uh uh uh,” at the critical moment they would change over to “oh oh OH.” For more on onanists, see here.

Anyway, Tromp’s experiment: He would offer a plate of cookies to a baby. The baby would reach for the cookies saying “wuh wuh wuh” and Tromp would shout “ONLY ONE, ONLY ONE.” Then the baby, startled, would go “WAH WAH WAH.”

What have we learned? The baby starts out life knowing that a single cookie is pronounced “wun.”

As for the spelling change when going from pronounce to pronunciation, I will explain that in a subsequent post.

Haiku Challenge: Football

man’s brain, designed to

last in nature’s harsh landscape

but not on green grass


PGME Haiku Challenge

Haiku challenge: Shy & Blush

nature may seem shy

at first blush before the blood

spurts over red teeth


Ronovan’s weekly challenge

My Backyard

I left my bed today for the first time in many months. Bruno helped me downstairs and out into the backyard.

The sun was high. The day was warm. I sat in a garden recliner.

The yard slopes down a mile through light woods to the river. A ship with all sails set passed heading south as I settled.

So much air. So much space outside. Breeze in my hair.

A band of Roma camp in the woods. The police and then the army asked me if I wished their removal. Let them stay. I see the smoke rising from their fires.

The dogs stay close at first, then begin to roam, then to course across the hillside. They flush a few rabbits but these dogs are not the old borzoi. They can chase but they cannot catch.

To die outside of that damned room, this is an end worthwhile.

Boy Saw His Socks and Knew It Was Bad

Long story short: His socks had his feet in them.

There is an old rule in joke writing: write the last line first. Dave Chappelle gives a clinic on this in one of his recent Netflix specials. He offers a somewhere shocking last line and then explains that he’ll work his way back to it, which he does.

So I’ve taken care of the hard part.