Jarring (Love is… # 71)

Poets have often
likened love
to roses
summer days
pastoral scenes
other sundry
phenomena

saccharine sells

in toto
love is not
candy
roses
sweet imagery
clichés
violin soundtracks

I, having lived
love

see more esoteric
practicality
from, for the heart

love is tartar sauce.
It looks like hell
you have no idea what
is really in it
yet you always
always
seem to find
it tasty.

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2018
http://lrd.to/sxh9jntSbd

Breezes

summer comes to a close
autumnal breezes waft
rustling memories of those
days when the close of summer
had more definitive endings

sun-drenched days of youthful
frolic, innocent play, done

swimming, playing with frogs in
holes dug on sandy beaches at
grandparent’s homes; ‘the lake’
summer Xanadus of childhood
one year, scenic backdrops for
advancing adolescence the next

the summer dented pails,
bent shovels lay unused in
boathouse corner; replaced with
initials inside a heart, drawn
artfully at dusk in beach sand with
carefully chosen stick, just to be
erased by evening’s gentle waves

Previous summers we traveled
in packs along endless lakeshore
some ‘ooing’ over discovered shells
all ‘eewing!’ over dead, bloated fish
skipping rocks to show machismo

But our duo walks became more
intimate strolls through the woods
privacy trumping pinecone collection,
coy separation from the collective
group not as subtle as we hoped

Each summer indelible as the
next; parts of many years blending
seamlessly together, a montage of
youthful Julys, childhood vacations

But the starkness of one summer
that is viewed not with the gauziness
of looking back fondly, but with clarity
of time, place, purpose…firsts.

One brilliant, Kodacolor snapshot
that never made it into any scrapbook
yet still remains the clearest picture

especially when summer ends
and the breezes of fall swirl

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2017
http://lrd.to/sxh9jntSbd

Documentation

Uniquely Minnesotabar napkin
crumpled, soggy
torn palate
slurred ink
Picassoesque words

Big Chief tablets
beloved by
2nd graders,
kitsch rhymesters

used envelopes
narrow canvas
postage, odd visuals,
broken windows
work in
cancellation stamp
wanderlust,
bonus angst

matchbook cover
epics cause
inspired squinting

haikus on receipts
cannot be returned without
merchandise in hand

scribbles, doodles on
pilfered periodicals
leave waiting rooms wanting
morsecodeed
urinal stall cuneiform
witticisms masquerading
as profundity
works! when aim altered

poetry is not common law;
always get it in writing

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2016
http://lrd.to/sxh9jntSbd

Gathered Pinecones

From my book ‘Gathered Pinecones’ on sale now, in paperback or Kindle   http://lrd.to/gathered-pinecones

Moored

Morning sun of summer
wafting through open, lake-front window
each day awakening with a squint, gasp
soft-focus of seven-tree birch stand
backlit by various shades of dawn filtered
through tall jack pines on Huxtable Point,
opposite, eastern side, of Horseshoe Lake

most mornings I lay there
letting the day begin its work
soaking in, absorbing rebirth

some days the siren call of loon, heron
splash of jumping bass, rhythmic slap of
lake water on sandy beach lured me
to end of sky-blue-painted dock
to sit, letting the sun, new day,
envelope me in loving embrace
old friends meeting for the first time

…sitting’ in the mornin’ sun,
…waitin for the day that comes
watchin’ the day roll in…

same tune, mornings, every summer
same window, bed, dock,
same morning sun
no two alike, ever matched

I, twelve-year-old Otis minus angst,
still unaware of melancholy, knowing
unequivocally, sitting on the dock
at the lake was never just wasting time

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2016
http://lrd.to/sxh9jntSbd

COVER FINAL

Lost, found, holding on

From my book ‘Lost, found, holding on’
Available in paperback or Kindle
http://lrd.to/p6rxzwIMnD

Salonica, goneica

She loves me, she loves me not
Played that game as a kid, for fun
with and without the flower
played it frequently later, for keeps
Won once or twice

I have over picked my life’s quota
of prophetic daisies, come out
on either side of the nursery rhyme
sometimes the right verse,
sometimes the wrong time

it blossomed, it went to seed
it blossomed, it went to seed
it blossomed, it went to seed

Same song, rarely heard second verse

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2016
http://lrd.to/sxh9jntSbd

COVER FINAL 2

In Honor of Aidan Immerfall 1991- 2014

IMG_20140721_133201

– Aidan Erin Immerfall, 2014

 

Rider less

What goes around
tiltawhirl2comes around
life more
Tilt-A-Whirl than
Merry-go-Round

Symmetry, overrated
repetition needs
expected spontaneity no
matter how it goes downtiltawhirl3

up…?

Nobody waits in line
just anticipating the thrill
of getting strapped in
and staying grounded

save the poeticallytiltawhirl4
unenlightened dreamer
on the rumbling
quarter-a-ride,
in-front-of-the
grocery-store horse

– Mark Lucker

Winter solace

These north woods100_5066
are lovely, bright, and deep
glistening with snow
and promises to keep

Serenity resides
in the fresh wonder of
the new wintry familiarity,100_5072
renewal in fresh snowfall

I have not trod, of late,
these winter woods
two years have passed
since my last sojourn

my longest such time
away from this place,
its brisk tranquility

These north woods
are lovely, bright, and deep100_5081
glistening with memories
promises to keep

aroma of pine wafts
unseen smoke warms
someone’s home,
my very soul

walking down
this familiar road
I know where I
have been is not
where I am headed
though the route100_5071
remains the same

each tire track
fading onto the horizon
is a different thread,
unique memory,
both history and map

there is scant traffic,100_5065
little to break the stillness
save the occasional
remindful siren song;
trill of a blue jay,
staccato woodpecker,
synchronized squirrels
tap dancing on birch bark

there is comforting
warmth in this winter air
a soothing, balmy chill
in the soundtrack
of these woods

I walk on, serene

These north woods
are lovely, bright, and deep
glistening with snow
promises they and I must keep

Mark Lucker

Customer

sitting at a yardsale1
rickety card table
a cloudy, droll
Saturday morning

yard sale boredom
broken only by
protracted
used appliance deal
negotiations
with dubious
dollar store
Trump-wannabees

dumping a half mugmorningglories2
of stale coffee onto our
cyclone fence-climbing
Morning Glories

a change-purse toting
fortysomething
housewife-financier
chides my wastefulness,
asks the price
of the empty mug

feigning indignancy
I proclaim my intent
is simply to keepmorningglories1
my morning glories
awake through the sale

Not quite skeptically
she asks candidly if
that really works,
musing on her own
crop of backyard
morning glories, her
caffeinated prospects
of keeping them awakecookiejar
longer on a daily basis

“Go easy on the cream”

I advise solemnly
heading inside for
a refill and Tylenol
making a mental note
to charge her
full price for the
cracked cookie jar

Mark Lucker

Ode dear.

My studentsPhoto0406

engaged with our
classroom material!

Rh negative blood shows
up with more frequency
than authentic interest

b ooks2my high school sophomores
academic pursuits escape
without breaking a sweat

until today, our unit on poetry

contemporary poetic takes
on relationships, life,
old basketball players,
the homeless
and disenfranchised

have left them unmoved,
their empathy still pristine
in their blister packs

Today we read, write odes –beatboy
puppies, cars, cheerleading;
tributes to video games,
paeans to
socks, cheese, urns, lamps;
dead soldiers, old beauty
queens, blank paper, life

pique curiosity, prompt

student salutes to pizza,
kittens, guns, gumbo

we explore synonyms for
like, praise, honor, worship;
admire, love, ‘really like’.
hyperbole flows
like spilled syrupaudience

and we never stop to
clean up our messes.

Each class repeats
the pattern
reveling in the un-poetic
praising the mundane
flattering the obscureblindsquirrel

acknowledging stuff.

My day ends with ample
praises having been
ambiguously, unassuredly
sung, shouted mumbling
from loose-leaf rooftops

nut-finding blind squirrels
would be at home
in my classroom,
would probably listen at least
as intently as my students
as I recite for the
pseudo-attentive
sophomore masses

this salutation to success
my ode to odes.

– Mark Lucker