Did Planet Earth evolve from random bits
of space debris intensively colliding
in willy-nilly fashion as befits
the current state of omnipresent fighting?
Does co-existence here for you and me
derive from Capricana’s maiden landing?
A Legend of Creation holds the key
for those demanding doubtless understanding.
Before a single footprint punched the soil
foreshadowing humanity’s uniqueness,
a serpent was positioned to uncoil
the moment opportunity met weakness.
The Maker softly sighed and shook Her head,
“I wish I’d fashioned something else instead.”
Mary Boren, 2017
Communicating on the fly
with empathetic protocol,
I’d lob a thought and your reply
assured me that you caught it all.
The interchange of sparkling wit
between us was a smorgasbord
of lively parlance to befit
the range of topics we explored.
Everyone began to mumble;
TV’s on, the walls are shaking;
sentence fragments feint and fumble
through the loopy route they’re taking.
Funny how, as ordinary
conversation grows abstruser,
now the tone is thrust-and-parry.
Hard of hearing? No! Not you sir.
Mary Boren, 2017
(with apologies to Lord Tennyson)
Half a loaf, half a loaf,
Half a loaf onward.
All in the belly at once,
Toasted and buttered.
“Downward the raisin bread,
Charge past the gums!” she said.
Into the belly, the crunch
Echoed and sputtered.
“Forward the Midnight Raid!
Slather the marmalade!”
(Not tho’ the sleeper knew
Someone had plundered.)
Pizza and pudding cup,
Hers not to pass ’em up.
Cookies? Another batch
Scavenged and down the hatch.
Mirror to right of her
Mirror to left of her
Mirror behind her,
Back to the cupboard.
“Diet begins at dawn,
After the gravy’s gone,”
Humbly she blubbered.
1998 Mary Boren
How unremarkably the day commenced.
You’d think there’d be a pounding in the head
or bitter foretaste—something that evinced
the warning signal: “Better stay in bed.”
In seven seconds flat, my face has turned
a dozen shades of crimson. I’ve outclassed
the planet’s leading idiots and earned
the title, Queen of Faux Pas. I’m aghast.
No other course of action now exists:
I’ll have to join a convent, change my name,
tell friends and family, “Cross me off your lists
before your lives are tainted with the shame.”
But, look astern … hope’s foaming in my wake!
(I realize I dreamed my worst mistake.)
2000 Mary Boren
I love you, Thomas Edison,
and all the saints before
or since who helped to bring
electric current to my door.
I’ve often yearned for simpler times.
Excuse me, I was wrong;
I’m very glad I wasn’t born
before you came along.
How quickly I forget when things
proceed without a hitch.
Hereafter, I will bless your name
each time I flip a switch.
I promise I will never fail
again to stop and think
each time I turn the tap to run
hot water in the sink.
When fiddling with the thermostat
or opening the freezer,
I’ll contemplate with gratitude
my lovely life of leisure.
Tomorrow when I wake up in
an air conditioned room,
I’ll say a silent thank you
for the wattage I consume.
I’ll ponder your invention
every day and every night,
and all the wonders you inspired
by turning on the light.
I’d like to send this accolade
by email with a shout
to everyone I know, but … damn …
the power just blinked out.
1996 Mary Boren
In the aftermath of an upheaval
such as not seen before in my life,
I was thinking, “No no, don’t believe I’ll
ever want to be anyone’s wife.
There’s a lot to be said for the freedom
of abiding in solitude’s glow,
and commitments (for any who need ’em)
are as fleeting as tracks in the snow. “
As the sages have said, “Send the heavens
into spasms of riotous mirth
by announcing your plans.” Laughter leavens
self-delusion like nothing on earth.
He appeared on a soft summer flurry
like a popsicle placed in my paw
by an angel alerting me, “Hurry!
Better lick it before it can thaw.”
Now the miracle he is creating
as my witness, my mirror, my guide
is unceasingly regenerating
in the heart of this fortunate bride.
2007 Mary Boren
As summer settles in, my silhouette
expands accordingly. The deadly sin
of gluttony results in deep regret.
I wish I’d left the Fritos in the bin
and pepperoni on the plate. The skin
around my middle wobbles like a bowl
of Jello balanced on a bowling pin.
My appetite runs rampant, self control
a fleeting and elusive bid to win
the battle of the bulge, to my chagrin.
While brooding on the shape my thighs are in
(a ponderous accomplishment beset
with sedentary decadence), my chin
has doubled twice — it’s now a full quartet.
Last week outside the Chinese luncheonette,
some children throwing pennies in the hole
mistook me for a Buddha statuette.
It’s clear enough to see, I’m on a roll
with jam and butter, reaching with a net
for anything I haven’t eaten yet.
2010 Mary Boren
Hooray! My soul can scarce contain the spasm
of eager joy. I’m champing at the bit
to prove myself a master of sarcasm
in torrents of unbridled spunk and wit.
I’m on my toes; adrenalin is pumping.
I’ve trained for this painstakingly for years,
and when they ring the bell I’ll come out jumping
to land a sucker punch between your ears.
It took a heap of sweat and dedication
to build an arsenal of barbs and hone
them keenly, lest a sudden altercation
should find me unequipped to hold my own.
Here comes that laced-with-acid verbal blast …
(I’ll think of it the minute you have passed.)
2001 Mary Boren