inally, a discussion on one of my favoritest topics: Hats! There are all types, as many as there are varieties of birds. But don’t quote me on that because I haven’t counted either. What? Speak up! I hate when my mind mumbles. Does yours ever do that? Extremely irritating. Some people have heart murmurs. It’s probably just as annoying. Okay, I’m listening! Sorry, you’ll have to talk louder! And enunciate! I can’t understand your gibberish! You’re right, it might help if I quit shouting. This isn’t about hats you say? Well then, I must’ve misunderstood. That’s easy to do when deciphering brainwaves. They get crossed like wires then muddled or fried. Which is why I seldom follow my own advice. It’s rather unsound. Plus I like to think for myself, even if I fail to pay attention. I guess that makes me ill-advised.

If this isn’t about hats, I’d best get on with writing a poem. There’s no point in my lingering to make statements that have nothing to do with jester caps, berets, stovepipes, brims or bowlers. Who would bother listening? Certainly not I.

And another thing: I really must speak to myself sometime about slapping titles up there that are apt to confuse. It’s bad enough if you’re confused. If I’m confused, forget it. There will be no making sense of anything whatsoever on this page. And if nothing makes sense, the words can simply run amok and merge together until the page turns black. Without the white, you’ll be staring at the opposite of a blank page! I suppose you thought that would be a page with something on it, didn’t you? A common misconception. A black page has everything on it — so much that you can’t see anything in particular!

Writing is a delicate balance of the black and the white. At some point, for some reason, you’re expected to make sense. Unless you choose to write nonsense, which makes a lovely excuse for this being as vacuous as most of the prattle I rattle off before writing these poems. I start typing and the words roll from my tongue through my fingertips. Sometimes they dribble or drool and my keyboard starts smoking, but never mind that. There must be a connection between hand and mouth. Oh yes, it’s called a neck. And shoulders. I wouldn’t want you to think I was missing those. A set of arms also, since my hands couldn’t be scurrying around loose! (Correction: They might were this a horror story. One might’ve freed the other so they could both escape, leaving a red trail of fingerprints. As well as an author who would have to learn to type with her nose!)

My writing, on the other hand — or nostril — is delicately unbalanced. It has a mind of its own and does what it pleases. When I say it speaks for itself, I mean that literally. Do not be deceived, however. The unruliness of my writing is cunningly calculated; premeditated. In its defense, please note that there is a difference between knowing the rules and deliberately breaking them or not knowing the rules. My writing knows what it’s doing. Therefore, despite appearances to the contrary, it isn’t criminally insane.

Grrrr, I’m getting déjà vu. Now I’ll have to worry I’ve said all of this before. I hate that!

My brain is muttering again. Eh? All right, all right, back to the poetry. Something to do with “hatitude”, whatever that is. Maybe it’s something to do with hate. I guess I’ll write a poem about that too, just in case. And whatever else spills out. I’m really only the janitor, left to swab and blot the ink so there actually is a little white space between.

What’s that? Why don’t I cease babbling then? I thought you’d never ask. Not you. My cerebrum. This is all so confusing. Let me just shut this thing off. There. Much better. Now I can hear myself think. Except I can’t think because I shut off my brain. Houston, we have a paradox!

No matter. I don’t need to think to write. It just sorta happens. Wait for it. Wait for it . . .


I wonder, as I will

Out of idle curiosity

That if hatitude is an attitude

Then despising tardiness

And hating to be late

Must be your latitude

Thusly, would liking to take long

Be someone’s longitude?

Or is it aiming for great heights?

Is gratitude that you are grating

Platitude that you have plating?

Does magnitude imply that magnets may have gunfights?

When guests neglect to wipe their feet

Do they have a welcome-matitude?

I confess it’s quite abstruse

How then could hatitude

Have naught but aught to do with hats?

These thoughts may give my brain a bruise!

I’m in a bratitude of dratitude

So what is hatitude?

Is it happy as a clam or as scoldish as a gull?

A hateful sentiment or a placid loving mood?

Might it growl at me or purr?

Is it anything or the nothingness of null?

I don’t know but I can tell you

I won’t use it in a sentence

I can’t tell if the first vowel’s hard or soft

I’m going to leave it where I found it

Put it back where it belongs

I merely stumbled ’cross it rummaging aloft

But on reflection, in retraction

On categoric irrevelation

Please don’t listen to a single word I’ve said

Because it’s obviously apparent

My hatitude is exactly thatitude —

It’s as plain as is the hat upon my head!


The vile ooze of enmity

Spreads slippery as oil

Infects like a virus

Heats blood to a boil

Permeates every island

Contamines all land

The air that we share

Each granule of sand

The bacterium of dislike

Leaps from one to another

Contagious as germs

Causing loudmouths to wuther

In the ocean of wrath

Tides crescendo and rage

Sea monsters will lash

Storms of warfare do wage

And innocent suffer

The belligerent fire

Of multitudes clashing

Teeth gnashing with ire

When animosity flows

Understandings will miss

While envy invades

The respectful may diss

We are none of us safe

Though self-righteously clad

High in our castles

Far from the mad

For indifferent acts

Carry consequence too

No, we can’t turn away

From what others may do

Every tumult is based

On the tenet of Hate

Which we among us must conquer

Before it’s too late.


Here I find the peace

In a pastel sunset on a satisfying day

A walk on the shoreline

Of a gloomy tranquil bay

Down the aisle of a forest

’Long a trail of dappled light

Though I sit in a corner

This isn’t where I write


I am free to record

My cadent steps down a cobbled avenue

The huff of my breath

As I hike Timbuktu

Impressions of Paris

Idle roamings through Rome

Explorations of London

Coming home to Stockholm


I can dream of my past

Timbered routes, Saint Germain

Wisconsin’s red barns

Treasured fragments remain

From my corner I journey

To such places afar

Those I’ve seen, those imagined

Some that once left a scar


I was trapped in that corner

’Mongst the dust in my head

A chill sunless dungeon

Where my heart was unfed

There I waited for release

When the outward crept inside

Things felt very wrong

So I wanted to hide


In my corner of the world

No more a place of isolation

I can touch other hearts

Calm the rise of desperation

I can reach across oceans

Beyond summits, over sand

Connect every corner

And share where I stand


We all have our niches

A sheltered cranny or nook

To find safety and refuge

Perhaps in a book

Perhaps as the reader

Huddled cozy and tight

We all have our callings

One of mine is to write


From my little corner

Of a cabin or tent

In a canyon or cave

On a sea or ascent

Wherever I am I am everywhere else

In the shade of a tree or even a tomb

I am no longer confined

By the walls of a room.


Arbor-legged, wrinkled knee

Long-nosed trumpeters of the plain

My heart is moved by your harmony

And yearns to commune again


Sleek-bodied nimble waterphants

Your presence swells the seas with pride

My eyes embrace your ballet dance

The mermaid beauty in your glide


I can’t comprehend how beast or man

Could fail to be touched by the likes of these

Would lack the awe, the mental span

To appreciate such qualities


Both creatures claim the noblest stare

Of tender intelligence, untold virtue

Yet men have sought without a care

To hunt them till they’re through


Some bravehearts place their lives at stake

For the sake of these gigantic souls

Whose presence we can’t for granted take

We have taken too many tolls


If you’ve ever gazed into one’s eye

You know just what I mean

And why the human race must try

To end the massacrin’


Such graceful goliaths are a gift

Whose existence we must defend

Without them our lives would be unshrift

Like abandoning a friend


Whether great or small, every life has worth

In ways that cannot be counted

For these natural wonders of the Earth

Will never be surmounted


We surrender by degrees each day

But will never know how much we’ve lost

We can’t let the biggest slip away

However great its cost


May the untamed spirit proudly thrive

And the chorus of humankind enjoin

That we value everything alive

More than the glitter of the coin.


You can hear it in the wind

A song of release

The shouts of jubilation

From the voices of geese

A flutter of wings

Brisk stamping of feet

A lonesome salute

As two mooses meet

The roarings of bears

A crashing of horn

The thrum of small insects

On a wilderness morn


Let the wild roam free

Let everything be

This is my plea

Let the wild roam free


It’s the task of each nation

To walk with respect

Limit their cities

What is unruled protect

The task of each people

Preserve Nature’s child

Don’t pick every fruit

Let seeds grow wild

Don’t pave every path

Don’t cage what survives

Let the wild roam free

For all of their lives


Let the wild roam free

Let be what must be

Remember this plea

Let the wild roam free


If we don’t understand

We cannot transcend

The unthinking damage

We must now amend

Give the land back its hope

Give the sea back its health

For this is our treasure

In this is our wealth

There is no greater jewel

Than the raindrops or tears

That fall from the skies

From the eyes of the years


Deep in our core

We all know it is true

It is everyone’s mission

And everyone’s due

It is our common glory

But a mutual blame

To let others extinguish

The natural flame

No city is greater

No kingdom as old

As the order of Nature

Yet its balance we hold


Let the wild roam free

Please listen to me

Let everything be

Let the wild roam free.


How stunted I feel

Without feathers to sail

High above Life

Confined to land like a jail

Oh sure I could fly

In a big hunk of steel

Confined to a chair

No air would I feel

Except reconditioned

Puffed out of a vent

Poked by neighboring elbows

That’s not what I meant

I would be in the belly

Of a large metal bird

Not free to maneuver

Just part of the herd

At the moment I’d rather

Soar free as a dove

To spiral and dance

In the air high above

An eagle or falcon

A fearless skydiver

Agile and bold

No subtle conniver

Like a surge of adrenaline

Keens the hawk’s daring note

Sturdy wings outstretched

Vibrant song in its throat

Being borne through the air

In a plunge of rash bravado

Sighting preciser details

Than my poor gaze can know

As if spying the future

With its hawk-eyed perspective

Or tracing fine clues

Like a winged detective

A bit haughty at times

Yet a riveting sight

I could watch all day

A hawk in flight

And dream of the clouds

My feet on the ground

Perhaps in the end

I will be heaven-bound.


An orange-bellied robin of youth

Swept me away

To the carefree untroubled countenance

Of a gentle summer’s day

My soles and limbs were bared

Fringed cut-offs a bit uneven

The smile of innocence still in place

My single sorrow the thought of leavin’

Can we ever return to such rapturous hours?

Be filled by the emptiness till we overflow?

Recapture that sense of the immensity lost

In the tiniest things — where did it go?

Idle moments when we had the leisure

To feel happier than we knew

Than we can ever find again

Somewhere scattered in the crystal dew

Of a summer’s day

Before the heat makes it disappear

Ere we could grasp

What seemed perfect and clear

For just one more second

If I could but hold

That ethereal thought and fragrant waft

Of a summer day . . . grown cold.


Sproing! A spring has sprung and hickory dickory, tickety tock

I am feeling amiss like an over-wound clock

Coming unraveled, my notions in kinks

Rather cuckoo, ring-dingy, a tad broken methinks!

I must be repaired but oh where can I go?

A clock-mender? Watch-tender? I simply don’t know!

In my turbulent way I am asking for aid

Though it isn’t my habit to act needy, unmade

Within my innermost workings I tend to be taut

My pieces aligned, gears faltering not

Why then am I off, my seconds too fast?

My hours a mite slow, my minutes a bit past?

Can anything be done, can this off’nse be righted?

My poor springs be loosened, the tension untighted?

Or am I destined to remain in an overwrought state?

Too wound up and high-strung? Will that be my fate?

Am I crazy or what? Tell the truth, I can take it

Would my offness be fixed if somebody should shake it?

How alarming to think I might never be on time

Either early or late in my hourly chime

That I’m stuck with this status until I run down

Winder too rusted, hands and face in a frown

A deplorable end for a stalwart timekeeper

If buying a new clock turns out to be cheaper

Or if my off-ense results in a draw

And can ne’er be adjusted, an irreparable flaw

But maybe I’m better off out of my mind

Exotic, quixotic, one of a kind

Perhaps I’m not damaged, just peculiar or strange

I might try being happy being off for a change.

~ Published ~
August 1, 2010

Spread The Word

Related Books

A humorous and serious collection of poems, prose and song lyrics by Lori R. Lopez, author of CHOCOLATE-COVERED . . .

A collection of very unusual verse, ranging from wacky to dark to narrative. Lori R. Lopez writes her . . .

A rich gathering of poetry with a dismal twilight atmosphere, a brooding nature, an eerie tone . . . . .

This dark, silly, and serious sequel to KEEP THE HEART OF A CHILD and THE QUEEN OF HATS . . .

A part of Poetic Reflections: The Column by Lori R. Lopez

You might also enjoy . . .