Monday, February 7, 2022

Pumpkins, Hornets and Dinosaurs


Our Trance
There he was, drunk as Baudelaire
and twice as fishy when
he unbuttoned the pearled rain from
my shoulders. I'd eaten stars
for dinner, so I didn't care
if it was a trance. 
That night
we were happy as pumpkins.

Archeology In The Dark

After millions of years, archeologists
found the dinosaurs
playing poker and spinning poems
in the tar. "We never knew we were lost,"
said the dinosaurs, "but thanks

Funeral At The Old House

The old house was full of hornets that morning.
Hornets cooked the breakfast( ham and eggs
and mealworms.) Hornets washed the dishes
and went out for funeral groceries.
Hornets paid the bills and mailed them
with the correct postage. They mean well
but they sting.

I keep wondering how
I got shut in with Frankenstein
and the old blind man
who ceaselessly 
lights candles while Frankenstein
smokes all his cigars.
Just lucky, I guess.
February 2022
posted for Shay's Word List #12

Bonus: My favorite poem by Brautigan:

" Lions are growing like yellow roses on the wind
and we turn gracefully in the medieval garden of their roaring blossoms.
Oh, I want to turn.
Oh, I am turning.
Oh, I have turned.
Thank you."
~from Rommel Drives Deeper Into Egypt, by Richard Brautigan 
Images:Pumpkinhead Self-Portrait, 1972, © Jamie Wyeth  Fair Use
Illustration of dinosaurs from the Late Cretaceous.© Jorge Gonzalez Fair Use
Vielles Maisons, 1920 © Helene Guinepied    Fair Use
Still from Bride of Frankenstein, 1935, Universal Pictures  Public Domain
Roses and Beetle, 1890, © Vincent Van Gogh   Public Domain   


  1. You have reflected Brautigan's style so well here, Joy, especially those middle two! See, I KNEW the dinos weren't really lost. Maybe now people will listen to me (and Jeff Goldblum)! The third one captures exactly his penchant for ambivalence in his poems. There is often a point and counterpoint, a fly in the ointment, or a diamond ring inside the caught trout.

    The first one charmed me with the "happy as pumpkins" and eating stars for dinner. He'd have loved that. And the wry question in the final poem is the sort of off-the-cuff philosophy Brautigan so often employed. Is he joking? Is he not? Are you? Who cars, I loved them all, and that final actual Brautigan poem is one of my favorites, too, along with the title poem.

    So glad the prompt inspired you, dear BFF. These are a delight.

    1. Thank you, Shay. I had a lot of fun writing these.

  2. I had a lot of fun reading them. Smiles.

  3. Sitting here feeling 'joy'ous from four of the most delightful short poems I've read in many a moon. I love this style of writing ~~ of word-gifting. Thank you, Joy.

  4. Pumpkins, Hornets and Dinosaurs, what have they in common? Entertainment and dining for a start. Of the three I'd be most leary of the Hornets, I've been stung by them before.
    Nice write, nice read for us.

  5. I absolutely love these poems Joy!! Each one is wonderfully unique and says so much. You fashioned the words in a closet of fun poetry and I had fun reading every single one!

  6. Joy, even though I haven't read Brautigan, after seeing the word list and reading your poems, he feels a little closer. The surrealism blended with oriented emotion is a memorable mix.

  7. Brautigan pure and through! I had so forgotten him. The style befits a certain breezy diffidence and the heavy hitting it allows. The sort of heavyweight shadowboxing one does with memory more than a little devoured by dreams. All that is fraught is tossed lightly, steps poem to poem in this series over the deep shit in us all. Like those dinosaurs in the casino. Another round, please! (And PS, how many of your gems have you collected into book form? Self publishing is pretty now easy at Blurb, I did six collections last year, as much to frame a life's work and have an easier form of archive.)

    1. Thanks, B. I also read Brautigan years ago and re-reading him for this, I couldn't agree more on that light step that twists the dance into something else at the last turn. AFA self-publishing, I suppose I might look into it, if I can afford it. the problem would be the temptation to re-edit every single thing I might include to an OCD maniacal perfection, so it could end up taking centuries.Glad you enjoyed these.

  8. all four of these are great. today is my third reading of them. all of brautigan's work, poems, stories, etc, have his signature "turn", not sure how describe it really, so absurd but so natural, like is mind control the physics of this universe, everything bends to his word, i think shay hit it best in her comment. i just got done re-reading and now re-re-reading revenge of the lawn. it is one of the books that i read in high school that got me started on my path. reading it again is like going back to my origin, reading your brautiganeque poems has the same effect.

    and i agree with brendan... publish!

    1. Thanks, phillip. Of all the poets that came out of that time period, Brautigan is my favorite. When I look at him I see boys I loved and who lost themselves beyond my ability to save them. Boys who could do almost anything but love themselves, yet still managed to live lightly with all that pain, til they couldn't. He was truly gifted. I'm glad you liked these--I enjoyed writing them a lot. And publishing...see my answer to Brendan. ;_) Maybe tho. It might be fun.

  9. Oh God, this is so gorgeous, Joy! The humour, the tumble of glorious imagery, the characterisation, I bloody love your work, honestly!! This is one of my absolute favourites of yours. I want to see it in print with the pictures like a little chapbook; the images you've chosen are utterly apt (love the pumpkin guy). How you personified each creature made so much sense to me, especially the dinosaurs, that is my favourite stanza. The wry humour of this has made my morning :-)

  10. i concur with all the above, esp. B and P's requests that you publish. ~


"We make out of the quarrel with others, rhetoric, out of the quarrel with ourselves, poetry." ~William Butler Yeats

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