Category Archives: The Squirming Coil

New poems

I took a whole pill

Pain pulled back like a pony tail

pried, positioned like a chorus

Lead vocals, a brief respite

I mumble like Michael Stipe in 1985


Me Again, Several Shades Later, Having an Amaring moment or three

I started out today as many of late, shaking off the late in the “rest” REM that tries to hug me tight, luring with lucid opportunities to climb to Orion’s Belt or dive to the deepest trench in the Atlantic- reality check- the Pacific is still receiving chemo treatments from Japan.

Throughout my life I have found comfort in articles of clothing: a favorite pair of Umbros (or Sambas for that matter), my Joker Converse from the 1989 Batman film, my soon to be retired on the way to fitting mumuish baseball style Stealy and so on.

During the course of the last three months I have begun pulling out older clothes, hoping to find an article or two that wasn’t mangled by the journey outward.

I unearthed a piece of clothing so central in me that it was jarring to see it- My Ernest Hemingway T-shirt I purchased in the Spring of 1990.

It was not only there, but in remarkable shape, sure, some wear, a few holes, but in wearable shape(my definition).

My sophomore year I had Brother Fred Dihlman for English class. He had me hooked from the first class when he had us diagram the first sentence of To Kill A Mockingbird

When he was nearly thirteen my brother Jem got his arm badly broken at the elbow.

1984 he had a class period where people monitored the classroom from every corner and reported on infractions being committed by people in the class.

He was always trying to get us engaged in literature in ways that were inclusive- numbers together, engrossed in learning.

The only Hemingway assigned that I recall was in essay format. Probably due to this, I was headstrong on reading The Old Man and the Sea on spring break.

While on vacation what did I find but a portait of Ernest on a shirt, marlin surrounding the portrait, with a quote from The Old Man and the Sea. Vacation souvenir acquired.

Literature is what lead me through receiving my expensive advanced piece of paper, sure. But literature has enriched my life beyond measure. It is tattooed to my soul.

This morning was teetering between wallow and centered. As I assembled my clothes for the day I reached far back into the T-shirt section of the deep bottom drawer (Atlantic, again) I pulled Mr. Hemingway and that giant marlin from the back.

I felt the sense of serenity and being I experienced on 10/12/13 waiting for Pearl Jam to start, no misplaced urgency, engaged. I felt calm. They played a stellar opening three, Lowlight sandwiched between two beauties, Pendulum and Sometimes. It was a night that sparked me.

And so I lumbered in. I lead with the best I had. It was enough.



A soothing sip of coffee

A realigning crack of the knee

The first bite of a sandwich made with love

The first rays of the days sun shower me

The unconditional love in my daughter’s smile

A cloud shaped like Mickey Mouse

A picture of nature awaits

At the end of a limped country mile

Sometimes not given the proper weight

Overwhelmed by outside forces of
Ignorance and hate

Suffering and close minded attitudes
That I dream will abate

Moment by moment

This I foster and create

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Posted by on 06/27/2012 in The Squirming Coil



Hate requires feeling


Head and heart still reeling

Giving the unknown source

Too much power?

Not a decision, conscious or not

The healing begins at its own hour

Biding my time to return to my love

Two women and a boy

Always held far above

The crumbled desire here

My tank at zero

Living the part of Nobody’s Hero

Not engendering any feeling

7 stories up, not even fear.

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Posted by on 06/21/2012 in The Squirming Coil



Why is power always wielded

like a sword?

Encouraging the selfish

and acts untoward


When it could easily

be used as a building device

to bring us together

fellowship, entice


The allure for the former

like Tolkein’s ring

Our inaction builds walls

dirges we sing


To turn ’round takes action

daily and kind

Act by act

a slow measured grind








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Posted by on 06/02/2012 in The Squirming Coil


Two Limericks for a friends birthday

* Last name omitted for a more anonymous feel

Gina 1 2 3* my red headed friend

Just ducky from dawn til day meets its end

Her words often audacious

never ostentatious

Her language she’s not known to amend.


There is a girl from the Southern Tier

Whose brashness has burned many an ear

Her name is Regina

you’ll laugh like a hyena

As her japes they bring you to tears.

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Posted by on 04/09/2012 in The Squirming Coil



Fury I Hath – The Catharsis Poem

This was me at hour one of anger really setting in.  I am not sure how I feel about it (overwrought? check, that’s me)  but I figure I don’t create too much from the perspective of anger (sometimes I feel I don’t create at all) so here it be- Angry Johnny*

Fury I Hath

No fury like scorned woman?

Try a Father’s Wrath

Tested twice

No one wants to feel my price.



Comfortably introverted

Responsibility for progeny

The shell must be averted



Fuck with them and you’ll see peace fail

Their growth and missteps

owned and prevailed

Step to them and your path I’ll derail

* This is my attempt at lightening up- A. I really never liked this song at all. B. I must be playing around as the Johnny being referred to has that antiquated H in it. C, One person in my life has every referred to me as Johnny and been allowed to continue.

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Posted by on 03/26/2012 in Dirt, The Squirming Coil