Whistling past the graveyard
only darkness lurks within.
Whistling past the graveyard,

yet I hear those sounds again.
The creaks of barren branches,
only evil lurks within.

Still, I take my chances
I find the noise unnerving.
The creaks of barren branches

has left my tune unswerving,
A frantic blow through nervous lips,
I find the noise unnerving.

Then suddenly the walkway dips,
a shadow figure beckons.
A frantic blow through nervous lips

would save my soul, I reckon.
Whistling past the graveyard,
a shadow figure beckons.
Whistling past the graveyard.


Henri remembered his mother’s admission.
“You do not have my permission
to suck your thumb! If I come
in again, my son, I will
wield knife to lop off your thumb.

Henri really was non-plussed,
for no matter how she cursed
and cussed; throughout her rant
and ballyhoo his mother
never followed through.

Why, he could bet his whole right hand
his mother would not take a stand.
She did not know, she did not see
Henri’s thumb was delicacy.
So his thumb went back to get all wet.

“YOU LITTLE BASTARD” came Mother’s yell
“Did your ears not hear me tell
the consequence of doing that?”
“Let’s see that thumb, you little brat!”
Down came her cleaver, and that was that.

Henri stared incredulous,
his mother’s deed, ridiculous!
She took up the digit to put away,
to return to Henri on the day
that he agreed to cease his sucking.

Henri’s wound took time to heal,
and his nine fingers made him feel
very much the lesser man
who could not count as high as ten.
He cursed the day his mother maimed him.

He grew older, a handsome man
With dark moustache and his hand
encased in leather to hide the void
where once his thumb had perched there sweet,
his moist and tasty, handy treat.

His mother, a woman of her word,
did rue the day she got absurd
by cutting off her baby’s thumb.
She knew someday that day would come
and Henri dear would have his thumb.

The day arrived, but her surprise
was something that disturbed her eyes.
Henri’s thumb was mortified.
No sign of life, she sadly cried.
Her young man’s anger boiled within.

Henri ranted. Henri raved.
Henri cursed the day she saved
the purloined digit in a baggy,
for now the skin was black and saggy.
Henri grasped his mother’s hand

and reaching for the very cleaver,
brought down the chopper soon to leave her
quite left-handed; marked for life
and underhanded. What he did next was hideous
for in his hand, he held her hand.

and hand-in-hand this messed up man,
raised her paw triumphantly,
making sure that she would see
what her Henri had in store;
her bloody stump dripped on the floor.

He closed her fingers to a fist,
with thumb aloft, which was the gist
of all this time that he had waited.
Now this day was celebrated.
His mother knew this day would come,

and watched in horror as her thumb
was inching closer to his mouth.
She prayed to God he’d keep it out.
But Madman Henri had other plans
again ignoring her commands.

Henri sucked his mother’s thumb,
she cringed, disgusted by her son.
Henri soothed his hunger’s itch,
for payback was a mouthy bitch.
His mother knew this day would come.


Fragrances waft, a gentle meander, floral or woodsy in nature. It soothes the nose and masks unsavory things. But stench stumbles in like an inebriate drunkard who had soiled himself and his reputation; a sad mutation of the upstanding bastard he once claimed to be. Sullied was the air when the seal had been broken. No words were spoken with hands clamped across nasal passages and the message purveyed was one they had seen on more occasions then they cared to account. The numbers mount while teams sans smiles and enthusiasm teem in. Within the home left abandoned and presumed vacant when the owner, Mrs. Beedle was lowered to her rest. The best attempts to contact any family proved to be a futile exercise.

A wise man would have considered the case closed, but their noses were reticent to relinquish the odiferous lingering. Gloved hands carefully fingering along the blood stained walls. The silence was interrupted by the calls from the group investigating the back rooms of this devoid domicile. Confident men and women strode toward the sounds, but found themselves reeling in disgust and horror. They were unprepared. Seasoned veterans stood and stared at the heap of former humanity foisted into the plush rocking chair.

There sat the problem. The decayed remains of a woman slumped clumsily into the furniture. The lavender tatter that was draped across her shoulder disintegrated into powdery residue. The scent was a clue. There was a hint of bouquet the closer the Detectives came to the undone body. Hard and callus men were starting To lose composure. The closure sought for this decrepit soul seemed a long time coming.

And then, the humming.

An almost cheerful tune from the direction of the cellar door. What’s more, the accompanying footsteps fell in syncopation on the creaky boards. Guns drawn and a warning shouted. “Come out with your hands showing!” the cliché came. Another unnamed face peeked through to grace the room. A mid-age gentleman, fifty-ish, stepped forward from the doorway. “Aunt Ginny? You have visitors?” he creepily questioned the lifeless chair dweller. The man from the cellar, hands raised; a surrender unsure, came to stand next to the shell of the woman. His Aunt Ginny. Genevieve Beedle.

“How rude, Auntie”, he leered, “You didn’t offer your guests a spot of tea? Allow me.” Soiled hands clutched for the knob on the old stove, amidst protests and commands to desist. Erwin Beedle couldn’t resist being the “congenial” host. At most, he wasn’t going down alone. The range did not ignite as such. It was much more like an explosion.

New teams were dispatched to investigate the scene. The first thing they noticed was the smell. Fragrances waft, a gentle meander floral or woodsy in nature. It soothes the nose and masks unsavory things. But stench of dead and burnt flesh stumbles in like a demented and feeble minded “caregiver”. The surviving officers shiver when the subject is breeched. Erwin finally reached his pinnacle, of course. The cynical brute took half the force with him.



My elbows hurt. Years of swinging
a heavy framing hammer takes its toll.
Just like my father, the first thing to go.
To extol the virtues of hard work
hardly works for one bred and raised
into it. A good fit for a blue collar guy.
Big plans and ideas; a mental diarhea
that clouds the here and now. How did
I not see it before? Sure, I’m enough
of my own man to matter, and still
enough of my old man to not care.
Where do I draw the line? It is a fine line
at that, and that begins the tale. The travails
of this life, rife with pitfalls and victories
are visited upon the son; the one most like
the man he aspired to be. My shuffle is
more deliberate. My vision waning.
My voice, still strong on paper dissapates
like vapor when I speak. I seek approval
to verify my insecurities. The purity of
thought and deed in need of a boost. No better
place to roost than in his shoes. These blues
sound better with a strong drumbeat; a sweet
syncopation to drive this transformation homeward.
The signs are tell-tale. The change is nearly complete.
I mailed my registration to AARP today.
All for a six dollar savings on a safe driving course,
to get me a ten percent discount on insurance rates.
I am becoming my Father. My elbows hurt.


I’m growing a beard.
Always wanted one; it is an afront to you.
Your fair-haired boy stands determined,
yearning to be free from the tyranny
of your iron fist. The last time we kissed
my face was clean and you leaned in
for more and more. But now, I just
let it grow. I know you hate it. I feel your burn.
I yearn for the taste of you, but I am not
through with my adventure. My beard
no longer scratches. It matches your heart,
there, but unfeeling. It never replaced the
face that was here before the hair.
Now, I care about it more than you.


Sitting reserved,
preserved for the night of hallows rising.
It’s not surprising some choose to abuse
the sacred traditions of this unholy night.
The sights expressed are those of October’s ending.
It is sending its message early.
Living brain cells need not apply.
This is for the pumpkin headed guy
who trampled these hearty mums,
to get to those windows
to scrawl that message in soap
(God, I hope It’s soap).
Besides, who taught you how to spell?
And you whorish ghouls with your filthy little mouths
expressing yourselves in four-lettered expletives
well within earshot of granny and three of the seven dwarves.
Do you even speak the language?
So much for the Queen’s English.
It’s open season, a license to thrill your abhorrent banality.
There’s shrill finality to October. Some call it All Souls Day.
That is, if you can escape getting carved up
and having a candle shoved up your ass to enlighten you.
It is only then that your sorry soul can pass into November
as we give thanks that we only have to endure these rituals once a year.


Fighting a battle often lost in the darkness
of a weary mind. There is no rest there.
Cursing the single candle lit to offer
its illumination; to infiltrate this
mental stagnation. Accursed slumber
why do you wage against my will?
Will you release me like the leaves
of October’s colorful flurry, left
to scatter in the cool winds from place
to place; a migration to discover the peace
that I crave. You have found me, October.
You have extended your lifeline in fine fashion,
a saving assist for one clamoring for control
over heart and soul,
over heart and mind.
I clutch your hand as I am flung over
the edge of reason. Your season is here.
You want me near, October, where I belong.
Anything else would be just wrong.

Walt Update

I have visited our friend. He is in relatively good spirits, although he does look haggard. Walt has given me his jump drive to post the following message on his blog.  GK

They said I can write a little. How magnanimous! About a page. How generous!

You’ve heard the phrase, “The first step toward recovery, is admitting you have a problem”. I didn’t have a problem. Up for work at 5:30 and not “sleeping” more than three hours a night from 1 A.M. I didn’t have a problem. Narcoleptic fits at work, nodding incessantly at my computer  with my finger on the return key for pages and pages. I didn’t have a problem. According to the people at Forest Lawn Cemetery, I snore. LOUDLY. I didn’t have a problem. Sleep study after sleep study where I would sleep undisturbed through the night to be told I didn’t have a problem. They’re calling this Exhaustion? Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) in actuality. Exhaustion is too simple a word. It say’s, “I think I’ll catch a nap. I’m a bit tired.” It does carry that for sure. I am a LOT tired. But it does not speak for the rest of it. The angst and irritability. Muscle achiness; uncoordinated. The palpitations and paranoia. The continuous headaches and appetite disruptions. The outbursts and memory loss. Dependency on “sleep aids” (they provided neither) and caffeine addiction . Depression and manic behavior. The dark side of my persona is an ugly fucker, and I’ve unfortunately come to know him all too well. The falling asleep at the wheel again recently was the final nail. I have a problem. Even “EXTREME EXHAUSTION” falls a bit short.

So the first step toward recovery has me being “forced” to sleep. Not much more I can do. Except this, briefly. No internet connection. Just my netbook for a little while with spaghetti squash for a brain. I tend to ramble. I am amazed I was able to continue to write through this. When I get the chance, I will go back and read some of it. I don’t remember any of it. I’m sure it has suffered.

It warms my heart to no end, knowing you are all out there with your well wishes and good thoughts for a tired, haranged and debunked poet. I’ve let a lot of people down, most importantly, myself. My girls have been my anchors.

I have seen many of the comments that have been posted. Thanks to Marie and Dyson and all the rest of you, my dearest friends who my friend Cathy calls my “adoring public” (I don’t know about THAT!). I will write you all something personally later when things get back to semi-normal for me. (Those who know me know I’ve never been  normal). Know you are all appreciated.

Enough for now. I think I’ll catch a nap, I’m a bit tired. Yeah I know, that ain’t funny. Walt.

P.S. – Thanks for your help, G.



Walt Wojtanik is going through a very difficult time. All He asks for is your understanding and your good thoughts (in whatever form they may take). He will not be able to honor prior commitments at this time. If situations are rectified, we are sure he will try to re-establish his contacts. His family asks that your respect his privacy.