Lost Love Poem by Marty Steyer

                  — To Patty 

Maybe it's sheltering today under
a blizzard of paid bills and bank receipts,
or maybe it flew south. Do you wonder,
dear, why old age (a murder of crows) greets
us with cawing? We've faced its raw music
lightheartedly, scattering our last crumbs
among mourning doves, which, just in the nick
of time, pecked them before it snowed. Numb is
indeed what our paired hearts must hope to be
to keep pounding through another season
of teeth-chattering cold. Calamity
has not yet touched us, love, which is reason
enough for good cheer and celebration.
The snow flowers like a white carnation.


1960 by Billy Collins

In the old joke,
the marriage counselor
tells the couple who never talks anymore
to go to a jazz club because at a jazz club
everyone talks during the bass solo

But of course, no one starts talking
just because of a bass solo
or any other solo for that matter.

The quieter bass solo just reveals
the people in the club
who have been talking all along,
the same ones you can hear
on some well-known recordings.

Bill Evans, for example,
who is opening a new door into the piano
while some guy chats up his date
at one of the little tables in the back.

I have listened to that album
so many times I an anticipate the moment
of his drunken laugh
as if it were a strange note in the tune.

And so, anonymous man,
you have become part of my listening,
your romance a romance lost in the past

and a reminder somehow
that each member of that trio has died since then
and maybe so have you and, sadly, maybe she.


This poem called to mind one of my favorite recordings (below) which has embedded in it some remarks/reaction and laughter from a lady in the audience which I feel is priceless and which I anticipate and enjoy hearing every time.  It really puts you there.  No, she wasn’t chatting up her date, but fully immersed in the experience she was having.  I especially love her laugh around the 4:18 mark, and again at the end.


If you wish to purchase the book this poem appears in, here is the link: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-rain-in-portugal-billy-collins/1123721806?ean=9780679644064



Wine and Vinegar

Little Spud in the Big Apple

“At the end of the day all my conscience can experience is limited to what is in my own mind,
why should I care at all what happens inside the minds of others?”

penned quietly with the pads of fingers unknown to my device of primary communication,
“I can’t say that you need to care, I’m not one to always care either but I think it’s important for something deep inside.”

Letting the words steep like wine,
age with the settling dust of time,
and after years,
softly popping the cork out,
noting how the tannins have developed themselves,
and though this has taken so long in my world of words
it is nothing to the ticking seconds,
to your mind,
you have forgotten,
will more likely than not forget again
upon reading your old thoughts:

“why should I care at all what happens inside the minds of others?”

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Over Thought Over

Little Spud in the Big Apple

Trying to break down the patterns of the mind,
the looping,
wall of thoughts,
that which builds up.
I often see patterns in my writing,
the looping,
even now with this pen to paper,
paper and pen
and paper and
pen and paper
and pen and
paper and pen,
I see the half
life of it all.

And I wonder, Dear Reader,
Dear Reader, I wonder,
the looping,
patterns in my writing
Do you, do you, Do You,
And I wonder, Dear Reader,
If you can see
my hand
Do you see?
my hand


the blue veins shrinking away,
blue, pink, where is the oxygen, blue
blue, red, red, oxygen, color
oxygen escaping to nowhere,
building up,
building up
buildingbuildingbuildingbuilding UP
popping underneath the greying skin,


the ink
the loops
the loops
the ink ink ink ink…

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Smelling Smoke

Little Spud in the Big Apple

somewhere among the
crashing and burning
the forest,

Far off from my
on Meadows
but you can
the smoke
over the flowers
the clumps of
long-stemmed grass.

Far gone,
lost to dreams and paintings,
Summer burning away everything,
Apollo too close to sage,
an attempt to naturally
pull more carbon into the world,
cycle it back to the roots,
to reestablish lost updrafts of life,
billowing clouds of ash and spark
into heaven,
tickling the feet of God.

I smell it,
feel the once strong roots
tickling my nostrils,
the bugs,
the clay,
the stems,
what could have been a haven once,
now reduced to ash,
like a red wine sauce over steak,
I pay through the nose for this too.

Unwittingly at first, I eat
Unwillingly then, I breathe,
being forced to notice that I’m
sitting here,
an artist, trying to fight

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Kiss (x4)

Little Spud in the Big Apple

The kiss on my cheek,
I lay quiet,
pulling the heavy duvet
over my crunched body
becoming something more of a bean
than a being:

and soft
and soft
and soft
and soft
all four quickly in succession
across the thin, David Bowie shape of my jaw
it’s impossible to tell which is what
or where the feather of the kiss lies
if it is in my skin
or your lips
my best guess is that it lives
somewhere between the spaces
The particles that are slung,
like so many shooting stars,
around the galaxy of your mouth
And south, north, east, west,
directions that take pages to explain
directions that can only be explained
with the unlimited passing of time
Skirting and dancing,
creating the gentle feather of each soft peck;

There is paint in this moment,
universes and microcosms
enveloping and unfolding,
stars burning down,
the world slowly…

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To Pass On

To Pass On
by Snide Gary (a.k.a. Me)

It’s never right
never the same twice
never the same slice
of silence

Jennifer had golden hair
often laced, in spring, with
pointed yellow petals
she was, to the land, and us,
a star tulip

But now, she’s a thought
crusted & dry in need
of wine and more silence

The task is not pleasant
between moments

I need tools — and education
as to their proper use