Under the fan palm, p.1
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       Under the Fan Palm, p.1

          
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Under the Fan Palm
Under the Fan Palm

  Copyright 2017 Richard W. George

  A Chapter of Verse, poems

  Ben Soul, a novel

  Collected Poems, multiple verses

  Five Stories, five short stories

  Lines from a Gum Tree Grove, quatorzains about a marriage’s rise and fall

  Remembering Barbi, verses in memory of the poet’s late sister

  The Alphabestiary, twenty-six verses and pictures for an alphabet tied to animals

  Winter Poems, verses from a long winter

  Table of Contents

  Index of First Lines

  A Ballad for the Stars

  A Storm Comes

  Ancestors

  Apocalypse

  Beach Summer

  Bring Me My Beer

  Bugles

  Ceramic Insects

  Christmas Meditation

  Clouds Ride the Wind

  Conundrum

  Coulter’s Daisies

  Cypresses

  Daffodils

  Day Lilies

  Desert Life

  Earwigs

  Emancipation

  Eucalyptus

  Evergreens

  First Quatrain

  Funeral Plans

  Ghost Ship Warehouse Fire

  Hurrah

  I Hear Ladies Singing

  Inspired by Horace

  I Wonder

  I Wrap Me in Clouds

  Irises

  January Day

  Loss Song

  Light Among the Gloom

  Little Rose

  Music Boxes

  My Pets

  My Quiet Time

  Night Ends

  Ode to Ganja

  Old Age

  One January Day

  Oyster Girl

  Pelargoniums

  Pindaric Ode

  Poets of Old

  Quetzalcoatl

  Rain Song

  Red-Winged Blackbird

  Rose-Red Skies

  Ruminations

  Shadorma

  Spring Equinox

  Spring Tanka

  Sunset Sestina

  Tell Me Tales

  The Boy’s Sparrow

  The Cold Villanelle

  The Cuckoos

  The Dying Katydid

  The Heart Can Be Dark

  The Dream

  The Eastward Peaks

  The Ladies Took Tea

  The Lucky Boy

  The Lusty Youth

  The Meadowlark

  The Oriole

  The Robin

  The Seasons Come ‘Round

  The Seekers

  The Small Rain

  Thought

  Uncompanioned

  Unrhymed Quatorzain

  Waiting for Night

  Winter Night

  Winter Solstice

  Winter Wind

  Ceramic Insects

  Ceramic insects

  Shelter under the fan palm

  Waiting for rain to fall.

  Overhead the clouds are full

  And spill over on the ground.

  She glazed and fired them

  With exotic hues unknown

  To the natural bugs

  Biologists have labeled.

  She treasured her artifacts.

  I keep them under

  The fan palm in my backyard.

  I treasure them, too,

  Because she made them. She died,

  My kid sister whom I loved.

  I go to watch them

  And think of the happy times

  We had together

  Before she made the insects,

  Before she left for Heaven.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  First Quatrain

  My scribbled verses are written down with zest.

  I offer them to all the world from west

  To east in all their metric variety

  And you may choose the one you like the best.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Ruminations

  Some folk conclude

  My attitude

  Is rather skewed

  Toward matters a prude

  Would denounce as lewd.

  Such judgments are crude

  As I conclude,

  With falsehood imbued.

  I admit I’m flawed.

  A loving God

  Would spare the rod

  And leave me awed

  With his mercy. Sad

  To say love may be dead

  Or there’s no god

  To forgive or judge.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Christmas Meditation

  Light your lights and hang your baubles

  And cook the goose or ham or turkey

  According to your traditions my friends.

  For me the holiday’s a time

  To number my dead, and one by one

  Remember each with fond regard.

  Wrap gifts for under the yuletide tree.

  Gather to sing glad carols of joy.

  Be merry laugh and dance. I’ll weep

  For those gone on before my time.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  A Ballad for the Stars

  The weather gurus promise us

  Grey skies and a threat of rain tonight.

  We welcome the wet despite the cold

  It brings, and the briefer time of light

  We’ll have because the sun is hid

  Behind the clouds spread out across

  The welkin. Dark the day ahead,

  The gurus say; the sun shall lose

  The power to warm the earth and sea.

  The moon as well will hide its face

  Behind the clouds and dripping rain

  Until dry weather resumes its place.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  A Storm Comes

  Tonight is for the stars in heaven

  To shine untarnished light,

  Be silver stars the winds have driven

  Across the dark skies of night.

  The moon has masked its bone-white face

  From the nighttime black and gloom.

  It's the hour for stars to dance with grace

  Across heaven's dark room.

  The wheeling stars grow weary of dance.

  The sun will come with day

  The stars prepare for the sun's advance

  And plot to run away.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Ghost Ship Warehouse Fire

  Three dozen dead,

  Too young to die.

  A city mourns,

  A nation grieves

  To lose both them

  Their talents, and their art.

  Some painted, others

  Made music sing.

  Perhaps, unknown,

  A poet died

  With verses dancing

  On the screen as smoke

  Blocked the air

  Of life from lungs

  Too weak to breathe

  The falling soot.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Light Among the Gloom

  Despite the gloom that fills our souls

  The sun has somehow made the day

  Bright with a hope we’ll overcome

  Defeat and loss. May sanity

  Descend upon the crazy man

  The people chose this time around.

  May God, if there be one, keep safe

  The world from doom and desolation.

  We shall persevere I think

  Lest our empire decline and fall

  To scattered rubble in the dump

  Of nations that arose and fell

  From inward rot or outer war.

  Shall we be Nineveh or Tyre?

  Or will we rise, a Phoenix from the ash

  Rejuvenated and winged again?

  Stay tuned for further developments.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Emancipation

  The ancient Greek and Roman poets told

  The erotic misbehavior of their gods,

  Describing them to be divinely schooled

  In adultery and other romantic frauds.

  We are, we hold, more pure by all the odds

  Than the ancients were. We openly copulate

  With whom we please, uncaring who applauds

  Or damns our romances with shouted words of shame and hate.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Old Age

  My face has wrinkles I’ve not had before.

  My stomach’s fallen and my feet are unsure.

  I walk with a cane lest otherwise I fall

  Where I will not rise forevermore.

  I wake with aches in joints I did not know

  I had. I rise with creaking knees and go

  To eat my toast and butter or eggs and ham.

  Ought I prepare myself for Heaven now?

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Apocalypse

  I have heard the trump of doom

  Ringing in the western wind

  Across the beach the shifting sand

  Whispers of ceilings crumbling in rooms

  The ancients built to house their dead.

  Wild loons shall sing a harmony

  To a god’s sad doomsday litany

  Of prayers unheard and scriptures unread.

  The funeral march sounds muted strings

  In mournful key to mark the end

  Of things. My purse has no coin to spend

  On clipping time’s unflagging wings.

  The stars shall reel around the moon,

  The sun shall fall in fiery death.

  The cities shall burn in the sun’s hot breath

  And all of life shall then be gone.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Unrhymed Quatorzain

  The sky is grey with smoke from fires

  Some criminal has made with matches

  Flung carelessly into the grasses

  Brittle and brown from summer heat.

  The conflagrations are great red smears

  Across the roiling heavens. The stars

  Are hid in black and grey behind

  The smokes from burning trees. I cower

  Inside lest my lungs labor too hard

  And strain my wizened flesh beyond

  Recovery. The swirling wind

  Stirs the haze in eddied spills

  Across the sun’s ash-smudged face

  And brings day to the edge of night.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Thought

  In the days of our lives

  When we’re on the edge of night

  Remember there will be

  A brighter day tomorrow

  As the world turns

  For all my children,

  Even the young and restless

  Abed in general hospital.

  Table of Contents--Index of First Lines

  Winter Solstice

  The bees and dragonflies are sleeping.

  The cold has driven them to shelter,

  Their roles of hunter and prey are set

  Aside until the sun shall drive away

  The gray that cloaks the sky with darkness.

  No insects move. The flies have frozen,

  And the earwigs have left their icy bones

  Under their stones of
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