December, 2018


In Kennebunk, we saw him once,
While dining with his wife
Between us, Secret Service men
On call to save his life.

He looked relaxed and jovial
Quite friendly with the staff.
Acquaintances would saunter by,
Shake hands, and have a laugh.

Back in the day, his politics
And mine did not agree
But in retirement, he seemed
Benign enough to me.

I once put down his actions
And all he had to say
But now he stands a moderate
Compared to those today.

A local told me both were loved
By left and right and such,
Then smiled a bit, leaned in and said
“Their children, not as much”.

Ah, Vlad and the Saudi Crown Prince.
From their hands, blood of rivals they rinse.
Their G20 embrace
Caused our Prez to lose face,
And we haven’t seen Trump smile since.


At a China-US dinner meeting
A trade war truce met with warm greeting.
A Great Deal, we’re told.
Put them tariffs on hold.
And please, stop the stock market bleeding.


It’s been said that majority rules,
‘cept where those in charge doctored the rules,
and flagrantly pandered
districts, gerrymandered,
Playing well-meaning voters for fools.


No Prison Time. Three words that ring so sweetly
to he of long-term insights gained first-hand
for names and dates laid at Mueller’s command.
And what exactly does this tie up neatly.

From sifting lies, to pleas, to dots connected,
who gains, who loses from these revelations.
Regardless, will they change the fate of nations
should vote suppression become resurrected…

But I digress. This Russian agent’s song
Brings others from the woodwork to the chorus.
How substantive their melodies? How porous?
And will we know if Trump knew all along.

The Special Council probes Election Steal.
From “Lock her up” to “Hey, let’s make a deal”.

At the funeral, next to his wife,
Donald’s pouting cut thru like a knife
He was angry and sore
That in death, Bush was more
Than Don ever could be in his life.


Over North Carolina’s vote messin’
Dan McCready’s withdrawn his concession.
Absentee ballots bought.
Looks like someone got caught.
Hope there’ll be a G.O.P. confession.

O sing the song of Fixer Michael Cohen
A mix of lies and truths through seven meetings
With verse and chorus rhymed with guilty pleadings,
And coda from the prison where he’s goin’.

But what of this Individual One?
Did he but pay to keep silent a tryst,
Or stoop to kiss some Russian Mobster’s fist
To move ahead his Moscow Trump Tow’r Fund.

For Truthy News, what do we hear from Rudy,
Wide-eyed and frothing in his tweet denials.
Come January – more charges and trials
With Dems in charge, let’s watch him do his duty.

New revelations shows a plot that’s thickening
Each player and their action, truly sickening.


A house divided. Anger burns in eyes.
All view The Other. None for compromise
Cruelty, injustice. Power for the few.
Headlines of fear. But still, what else is true.

Countries at odd while borders grow inflamed.
Leaders posture as their young get maimed.
Buddhist. Christian. Hindu. Moslem. Jew.
One God or none. But still, what else is true.

A planet on the brink needs action drastic
What isn’t up in flames is filled with plastic
While seven billion wonder what to do,
The rest are leaders. Still, what else is true.

The joy of harmony. The promise of romancin’
If all else fails, dare to go out dancin’.


From the proud who use brick-bats as shields
Shines the blood red their hatefullness yields.
The hurtling metal
The crush of a petal
The jail for James Alex Fields.


There once was a Staff Chief named Kelly.
Who hung in ‘til he said “Woah, Nellie!
All these employees
Crawl in on their knees
‘Til they slither back out on their belly.”


The committee where Manchin will sit
Is giving progressives a fit.
He’ll make real-world strides,
And work with both sides.
Translation: He ain’t gon’ do shit.


For years they would spit out this woman’s name
As if expectorating something bitter
Now back, beyond a doubt, no quitter,
More than prepared to beat you at your game,

As cameras roll we catch the penile pride
erupting in a briefing paper toss.
Just shut it down. You show that bitch who’s boss
A wall. But you’re the only one inside.

So what’s a man to do about this thing –
A woman who’s main goal is not to please.
A woman who says “no.”, not on her knees.
“Don’t underestimate”, she said, “the strength I bring”.

While Pence sits quietly, not even twitchin’,
Just wishing she was barefoot in the kitchen.


Seven-hundred and sixty-nine days remain.
Until our country’s next inauguration.
Each fraying thread another situation.
And all we’ve lost, has time passed to regain?

A party ponders life beyond its head
But who among shall rise to raise the voice
That offers still a right, but saner choice,
Or stay aboard the sinking ship instead.

We’re not the New York Times, but The Enquirer,
A dad held hostage by his psycho kid
For instant satiation of the id
A world not for the do-er, but the desire-er.

Against this backdrop of The Greatest Nation
A migrant child died of dehydration.


The scandals of sex got their start
Long before Donna Rice-Gary Hart
But excuse this behavior
In your sad orange “savior”
And you elevate cheating to art.


The charge of caring for what lies within –
A trust, protecting what belongs to “we”,
And letting lands and waters simply be,
Beyond who wish the auction to begin.

Not so for Secretary Ryan Zinke,
Removing long-time staffers from their station,
To better put the “con” in conservation.
And profit making air and water stinky.

But come next year he too goes out the door
Perhaps to join the fuel and fracking forces
To lobby for the deals he now endorses.
How nice investigations are in store.

Yet still salute this former Navy Seal,
A man who’d truly rather fight than feel.

The bad news, it seems, never ends.
Without warning depression descends.
While troubles abound,
There’s Joy to be found
In Good Food, Good Music, and Friends.


Resolved and standing proud, he’ll shut it down.
No wall? No problem. Call Pelosi’s bluff.
A time to show the world he’s got the stuff.
So easy lies the head that wears the crown.

Transparent Sarah Sanders says “hold on,
We’ll scrape up that five billion other ways”.
What happened to the line “Mexico pays”.
Like other campaign promises, it’s gone.

But hist’ry says that walls stand much for show.
And largely serve for ego and distraction
The smoke to blur corruption and inaction,
Abuse of those with nowhere else to go.

“Dirty and poorer”, so says FOX’s Tucker,
as sponsors slowly leave this racist (huckster).

Bonus Limerick (for no particular reason)
I need to erase from my head
The image of Woody in bed.
Young Englehardt’s depictions
Of erotic non-fictions
Are for me, I regret, best unread.


Michael Flynn hoped he had enough clout
To avoid prison, but now there’s doubt.
It looks like Judge Sullivan
Won’t give him a Mulligan
For his plans to sell his country out.


A rhyme to toast our soon departing Speaker.
Paul Ryan, your three tumultuous years
Did much to stoke environmental fears
And stroke the rich, while making poorer weaker.

Yes, please bemoan our “broken politics”
And carp about surging entitlements,
While handing over blank checks for Defense.
Let’s hope that your departure starts the fix.

You rode in on a promise to cut spending
And rode out on an awesome deficit
No room to pay for Medicare and yet
There’s always more for war that’s never ending.

Bad news? You’re unemployed. Expect a slump.
Good news? Hey, you no longer work for Trump.


The stock market’s tanking, and how!
The Government’s shutting down. Wow!
The right wing is grieving,
Jim Mattis is leaving,
Trump sez: “Who’s the Maddest Dog now?!”


Let the Trumpian Shutdown begin!
It’s a tantrum, regardless of spin.
And no wall, it’s sure,
Can keep us secure
From the chaos he spews from within.


Perhaps some fair questions are, “How
much soul was sold for Trump Moscow”,
and “Just what was meant
by his signing intent”,
and “What does this mean for us now?”


From all that we’ve seen

And all that we’ve heard

Ruth Bader Ginsberg

Is one tough old bird.


‘Twas the night before Christmas, and at the White House
Everyone was indicted except the Head Louse.
The lights were all out, and the cell phones were gone
In hopes that the Prez wouldn’t tweet from the John.
Ivanka and Jared curled up free from blame,
Though they spent the past year cashing in on their name.
And Mama Melania slept through the racket
Wraped up in her “I Really Don’t Care, Do You?” Jacket.

When the Justice Department erupted with clamor
As they bet on the next one to go to the slammer,
Away went the Congress, with government closed –
Who cares if it’s We the People who get hosed.
The market was dropping like new-fallen snow
Leaving hordes of short-sellers with eyes all aglow,
When what to my year-weary eyes did appear,
But a caravan led by illegal reindeer.
With a little old driver, so fed up and tired
By the end of the year, he would quit or get fired.
Like endangered eagles, they limpingly came
As I wondered who’d be left for Donald to blame.
First Sessions, then Zinke, then Kelly, then Mattis.
Giuliani is staying, but he’d work for gratis.
With Haley’s departure, the U.N.’s in limbo
But she’ll be replaced by some young FOX News bimbo.
It’s a fast-sinking ship – it’s a crumbling wall
So dash away, dash away, dash away all!

I was shaking my head and about to get drunk
Contemplating how low our great country had sunk
When Santa walked in – the old man got grounded.
His reindeer locked up and his sleigh was impounded.
Poor Rudolph got wounded – that ended his schleppin’
When a cop mistook his bright red nose for a weapon.
I saw Santa wince as he clutched at his back
And he grabbed OxyContin from out of his pack.
But still as a trouper, he took to his task
In between taking sips from a Royal Crown flask.
I handed him treats and he emptied the bowl,
In return though, he filled up our stockings with coal.
“You’re welcome” he grunted, and went on to say
“For this you can thank Donald Trump’s EPA.
The North Pole is melting and flooding out folks.
So glad Climate Change is a mere Chinese hoax”.

Then shrugging his shoulders and scratching his head,
He said “Hey, we’re done here, just go back to bed”
Then calling an Uber, he went down the block
With faint hopes of getting his sleigh out of hock.
But as he rode off, I heard Santa wail
“Merry Christmas is a greeting that’s too big to fail!”

Put yourself in that little girl’s shoes.
Yes or no, which one do you choose.
One’s disbelief crests
When our leader suggests
That Santa just might be fake news.


Misshapen narratives broadcast from borders
The images of various perspective
From fear to empathy to bald invective,
To uniforms with ever shifting orders.

A family that’s fleeing danger wild.
A family that’s seeking legal entry
A family that’s broken by a sentry
A family that’s burying their child.

Each story just as every heart, unique.
Unholy throng – by many viewed as such.
Not knowing if they’ll ever get to touch
The miracle of what it is they seek.

Each angle brings a channel that reports it
And fills the Babel Tower that supports it.


About his own bravery he bragged,
As his baggy-ass bomber coat sagged.
He lied to the troops
He called Democrats poops.
It’s a wonder he didn’t get fragged.


This shutdown is wrecking the mood.
New Year’s Eve may be somewhat subdued.
Trump’s golf will be played,
And congress gets paid,
While government workers get screwed.


With fake news, disaster and terror,
The world is not getting much fairer.
There still is some time –
Contact Amazon Prime –
This year was delivered in error!

This whiplash tour de force of world events
A weary’d year of many and of much,
And yet so sadly lacking in the touch
That points us to a way that might make sense.

So wide, so deep, the space that lies between.
And now that chasm, globally connected,
Can rock to dust the best that we’ve erected,
And only then, lament what might have been.

A year at closing time – a cycle ending –
A fixed point source of infinite potential.
In some small way a choice that’s reverential –
Absorb and dare to radiate the mending.

If it no longer serves, wring out the old.
Weigh what you feel beyond what you are told.

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