nanowrimo 2010

Upon the Stairs-Just for fun

As I was walking up the stair
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today.
I wish, I wish he'd stay away."
- Hughes Mearns

One night as I climbed up the stair,
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today
I think he's from the CIA.

One sunny day I climbed the stair
and met a beauteous woman there.
Alas, she was not there today.
I wish she had not gone away.

One shadowed night upon the stair
I met a man with bottom bare.
I asked him why he dressed that way;
He glared at me and ran away.

Noisy children on the stair
Left toys and objects everywhere
I gathered them; tossed them away;
And by their mother have been flayed.

I live atop a long dark stair,
In an apartment cold and bare.
Why I don't move I cannot say.
There's no good reason why I stay.

The Ballad of Mighty Ed

I am enamored of the villanelle as a poetic form. When eight or more limericks related by subject or theme are gathered to lambaste said subject or theme, the poetic form is called a "villanous".

The Ballad of Mighty Ed


There's a mighty man named Ed
of which much can be sed.
When playin' backgammon
my checkers he's rammin'
and frequently I wish him ded

Righty Ed

The reason Ed's called Mighty
is not casual or flighty
It's his height and his girth
and intellectual worth
and a political tend to the righty.

The Fate of Ed

Ed, he worked in radio
before he met his lady-o.
He became a programmer
but belonged in the slammer
then he taught in a classroom/studio

Ratings Revival

It may be hard to believe
but plaudits Ed does receive.
His backgammon rating
is always inflating
and my own I cannot re-veeve.

The Art of Noice

Somewhat should be said of Ed's voice.
Its reverberations are choice.
He once did some adverts
and radio sales blurts
now he uses it mostly for noice.

The Diminution of Ed

Mighty Ed is known for his girth
his weight in gold of consid'rable worth
but he's rapidly losing.
To be svelte he is choosing
through exercise like Hell-on-Earth.


Ed's lady is Miss Kimmiepie.
Alas oft she does flie
to far Idaho
where, as you know,
they grow the potatoes you frie.

To Far for Sushi

Mighty Ed who plays backgammon
who my checkers is constantly hammerin'
lives too far away
to reach in a day
or we'd have sushi with wasabi and salmon.

Copyright 2009 R.R.Louderback
all rights reserved
nanowrimo 2010

Poem: Sky of Dreams

Under a Neon Sky of dreams
Where swift do chaos' clouds careen
Electric birds slash tree to tree
Leave ozone trails and thunder breed.

Swirling sounds rise high aloft
bleeding colors pastel and soft
into the air - a tangible thing
made of songs that children sing.

Falling rain leaves tiny spheres
to which the chips of leaves adhere
and wash away in bouncing streams
under a neon sky of dreams.
nanowrimo 2010

Weighted Down by Water x 2

Another fairly rare exercise in blank verse. I almost feel this should posted as prose.

Weighted Down By Water

When you read this I want you to think about me and about the wonderful times we've had.

Remember the time we went to Coney Island and those stupid hats we bought. We wore them all day long and you nearly cried when yours blew away on the way home.

Remember that old convertible we were driving when you lost your hat. The "road apple" we called it. We sold it for a hundred dollars to a kid that only had that much because he fell in love with the candy-apple paint job. It was his first car.

Singing in the shower is how I'll always remember you. You couldn't understand why I always laughed, but really, who sings songs from the "Animaniacs" in the shower? I mean "A quake... A quake ... The earth begins to shake!" Kiddy songs in the shower and torch songs in the twilight. That's you.

I know, I know. Don't even start about my habit of waving my hands while dancing. I can't help it. Remember that time you told me I looked like some CEO trying to manage a hostile take-over of an interpretive dance studio? How we laughed until we actually fell down?

Think of all those times and remember all that stuff. I will. I'll never forget them or any tiniest particle of you. Think of me like that, not in the bathtub surrounded by swirling pink and weighted down by water.

Weighted Down By Water Redux

Remember the cabin by the lake? How we used to skinny dip at dawn knowing we'd get caught by the fisherman down shore? How we'd laugh at his scowl and run without even a towel up to our cabin when he came paddling by, remember?

Remember the time you pushed me and I pulled you off the bow of the river boat that Sandy chartered for her wedding reception? Nobody believes us still when we talk about how we wound up swimming right in the middle of a school of dolphins. But we did.

We went to the park and spread out a picnic in the middle of a thunderstorm wearing slickers and galoshes and drank wine so thinned by the rain that it seemed like only water. Remember we got drunk anyway? God but you had a rotten cold afterward. I kept the electric blanket on your legs and massaged your feet every evening until you got well.

We ran into your parents at the public swimming pool that day when we told them we were studying. Remember how your father kept ducking me and got thrown out of the pool by that big valkyrie of a lifeguard?

All my memories of you are weighted down by water... and are all the more precious that I can pour them through my mind.
nanowrimo 2010

The Art of Parties

I ran from the whirling bright-lit world
to a place of quiet and sharing.
I found me some rest in silence furled
and surcease from caring.

My life in a world of noise and light
left me damaged and sore and guarding.
My mind was consumed with fancied flights
musing the art of parties.

When rapid motion is all the world,
and needful speed prevents you caring,
seek out silent fields in gentle light -
let your thoughts go faring.

small cake and finely cut bread

Signs of civility abound
skirts like clouds of mist all whirling.
My heart lifts at the orchestral sound
and I find my spirit freed, unbound.

The flash of light on polished sterling,
odors, sweet aromas that go to my head,
banners bright in the breeze unfurling,
warmth and courtesy 'round me curling.

There's naught I would have in their stead
gallantry, amenity, the world around me
seen in evidence of no stronger thread
than a small cake and finely cut bread.
nanowrimo 2010

Underneath Those Secrets

Underneath Those Secrets

There are secrets behind your eyes
and underneath those secrets lies.
I fear to bring them to the light, would rather hide them for the night.

Lying together side-by-side,
passion's touch a growing tide,
I'd rather believe your voice than have to make a lasting choice.

We've been together for a year,
but I feel the ending's near.
Too many things refuse to add or add to a result that's only bad.

What is the fault, the fatal flaw,
that leaves us to rub each other raw?
Why has love become but toil when once it made our blood to boil?

Simple answer: "no regrets"
You can keep your hateful secrets.
What we had was all for good and we loved each other while we could.

nanowrimo 2010

A rare exercise in free verse

Some rare free verse (unrhymed verse without a consistent metrical pattern)


Hi, sit down young man.
It's nice of you to visit today.
I come on Fridays, Dad.
Oh. Well, I don't want to monopolize your time. If you should be talking to the others...
I came to see you.
Have we met? I was a programmer for years, had a national reputation of sorts. Did we meet at a seminar.
I'm your son Jack, Dad.
Of course... I'm just a little tired. How are you Joe?
I'm fine dad. I'm here to have lunch with you.
That's great! I'm allowed to have visitors for lunch, we all are. The food isn't very good though. I used to cook for my boys. I had a whole horde of kids, ten of 'em, all adopted.
I remember.
Never had more than five at home at one time, though. That was plenty of a mob for me. What was I saying? Oh... I used to cook for the boys. I was never much of a cook, but if it involved tomato sauce I could make it.
Together: chili, burritos, or spagetti.
I remember it well.
Have I cooked for you?
I'm your son Jack.
Oh sure! Are you good? I remember cooking chili for you boys. I never could cook chili like my Dad's. I wish you could have tasted it, but mine was not bad. Why don't you stay for lunch. I think they're having chili.
I will dad.
Good. Maybe we can eat out on the terrace. I like eating out-of-doors. I lived in Miami for years. It kinda spoiled me for eating outside.
I used to make a pot of spaghetti that would feed an army, cause I had an army to feed and we would eat on the back patio shoving big plates of spaghetti around with big pieces of crusty garlic bread. Those were good days!
Well, we can have lunch today.
You're staying? Good, we can have guests for lunch. I think they're having spaghetti. Should you be visiting one of the others though? I have family and lots of them don't...
I'm your family. It's me, Jack.
I'm just a little tired. Silly of me not to recognize you right away. Look, they're wheeling out lunch now. Let's go sit.
No, Dad, come this way, there's a seat on the patio.
Oh good. I like to eat outside. My first apartment in Miami had a wonderful patio. All the others were smaller and not as good. I wonder why?
Try the meat loaf Dad, it's not bad.
Meat loaf? This stuff barely qualifies, no flavor at all. I used to make a five-pound meat loaf for my boys. I put cheese and mushrooms right in the mix and pushed six or eight cloves of garlic into it while it baked. I topped it with the same sauce I used for spaghetti after I removed the garlic cloves. The boys used to just go through it like mad.
I remember. Are you finished Dad? You didn't eat much.
I never eat much of this garbage. I'll order some Chinese tonight, or maybe tomorrow and fill up.
OK, Dad. You want to get a lounge by the pool?
No. Don't you have to visit some of the others young man? I seem to be monopolizing your time?
I don't mind. We can spend as much time as you like together.
Let's go walking, then. There's a little pool down that path where I like to take off my shoes and wade a bit.
Dad, there's just trees and grass down there, no place to wade.
With respect, young man, I live here. I think I know what's here and what's not.
I'm sure you're right. Would you just as soon relax over here. There's a lounge under the awning. Nice shade for relaxing.
You could have just said you didn't want to walk.
Awaking from a quiet snore: I just drifted off there for a second. Warm weather'll do that to me.
We can talk a while if you like.
No. I'm a little tired. I'll just nap here.
OK, I'll go on then.
Thank you for visiting me. I appreciate you spending so much time.
It's my pleasure.
To his son's receding back: Jack?
Yes Dad.
Are you going now?
Did we have a good visit.
The best, as always. We had lunch together.
Yes, the chili. Not bad.

nanowrimo 2010

The Starless Night of Dreams

I know the eyeless ever-clawing scream
Dragged out from in the heart of my own mind
That fills the haunting starless nights of dream.

The blankness filled with every futile scheme
Informs my soul and desperation blind.
I know the eyeless ever-clawing scream

Behind me in a rolling, crushing, stream,
Comes terror of a chilling, evil kind
That fills the haunting starless nights of dream.

On foolscap, ink records a nightmare's gleam
Then burns each day with red-hot flames entwined
I know the eyeless ever-clawing scream

Of gaunt and ghast and red-lit burning steam
Upon the flesh of helpless ones confined
That fills the haunting starless nights of dream.

Spare me the embrace of the fiend supreme.
Who stole my eyes and made me ever blind.
I know the eyeless ever-clawing scream
That fills the haunting starless nights of dream.


Form: villanelle
nanowrimo 2010



I climb, unlighted, through the dark
secure. I know above what I will find.
Ascending softly, borne by hope,
my heart a-thump and scarcely in my chest confined.

The doorknob turns and I softly step
to bedside, touch your tousled hair
and sigh, so foolishly relieved
to just discover that you're there.