THOU SHALT NOT

You know you shouldn’t, so don’t.
Some things just aren’t right.
There are commands to guide you,
but they won’t hide you from
doing the wrong thing.
It rings of disobedience if your
expedience gets you in dutch.
It’s much to much to chance.
So thou shalt not dance on the edge.
And don’t hedge you bets.
Go the straight and narrow,
or it’s straight to hell you get!

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

POETIC ASIDES with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #457: Disobedience

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DON’T TOUCH MY TOOLS / PUT MY TOOLS AWAY

I couldn’t get it through my head
that Dad’s tools were his trade and it made him mad
when I had used his implements.
He’d get bent out of shape and went ape
sure as I tell you. But he knew…

As sure as I tell you, he knew
that I had an affinity for fixing things
just as he had all his life. So the new rule became this:
If you use it, put it where you found it!
A lesson ground into my head from the start.

A lesson ground into my head from the start.
It didn’t take me long to take it to heart.
Leaving a hammer out didn’t bring the wrath of Thor.
He was more disappointed than mad.
He had a way of teaching me his trade.

Dad had a way of teaching me his trade,
and it made me more well equipped to handle
any problem that came along.
Put your tools where they belong.
That message has always resonated loud and clear.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

POETIC ASIDES with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #457: Disobedience

DON’T TALK BACK TO YOUR MOTHER

Respect came in various lessons,
and messin’ with Ma was one learned early.
The old man went squirrelly when we dissed
his missus. He truly went nuts,
no ifs, ands or buts.

No ifs, ands or butts
would not be spared if we dared sass back.
A swift smack on the behind
would find you and remind you,
“Don’t talk back to your Mother!”

Don’t talk back to your Mother.
But, giving Dad the lip with a slip of the tongue
would have also “brung” the wrath of Dad.
He wasn’t bad, but he had a fuse you needed not light.
We had to fight the urge disobey.

We had to fight the urge to disobey.
We’d say what he wanted to hear,
and wait until we were clear of earshot
before we got our frustrations out.
It wasn’t about what we said.

It wasn’t about what we said.
Instead, it was how we said it.
I’d live to regret it that my last words to mom
came from a dark place. The hurt on her face.
stays with me to this day.
It was too late to watch what I say.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

POETIC ASIDES with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #457: Disobedience

WHAT DID I TELL YOU?

 

“What did I tell you?” my father said.
Swimming in the creek was dangerous.
He made a fuss about how the steel mill
would dump slag and waste (you could taste it
in the water.) “I ought let you suffer.”
He continued his tirade as he swabbed
my left eye. I’d cry if it didn’t hurt so much
to his gentle, but angry touch. I swam
in the creek with some friends.
It is all fun and games until someone
throws a handful of creek bed silt
in someone’s eye. My eye. Disobedience
is a teachable moment. It sent me to bed
early, eye patched and irritated.
I was elated that I hadn’t lost sight in it.
It had more fight in it than I’d have thought.
I ought not swim in the creek again.
I didn’t. A great decision!

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

POETIC ASIDES with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #457: Disobedience

WHAT’S THE DEAL?

You’ve played the gambit
and the gamut of games
has your head stealing
a breath or two as you
prepare for the next round.

You’ve found that you are
less of a player than a heart slayer
as you lay your cards on the table.
You’re able to hide your poker
face, a grace you’ve been given.

You’ve got a hand that would stand
up to any, and many have bluffed
with less. It is best if you go
all in to try and win her heart,
for you know it is all a part of the game.

You’re down to your last few chips
and you’d be a monkey’s uncle
if your ante leaves you broken.
They’re only tokens anyway,
it just depends on how you play.

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #452 – Game

IF YOU CAN DODGE A WRENCH…

I grew up a stooge.
I had Moe’s haircut
but I got into trouble
when I’d double-up my fingers
to poke my brother’s eyes.
I learned the trick watching
slapstick comedy. Aim for the brows
and hope he doesn’t flinch.
After the first time, he never did.
I hid my love for being a physical joker,
faux eye poker for years. But my greatest
fears were exposed when I chose to watch
“Dodgeball”. A madman throwing wrenches
as a training tool? The only fool
was the guy that didn’t duck.
“If you can dodge a wrench,
you can dodge a dodgeball!”
An involuntary belly laugh every time
I heard it chime off of the man’s head.
You’d think he’d learn after the first time.

© Walter J. Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #452: Game

DO NOT SPEAK ILL OF THE DEAD

Hauntingly flaunting their verity,
searching for clarity or at the least
their finished business. A chance
to other side unimpeded. They’ve
exceeded their life expectancy. They’ve
begged and pleaded for some relief
but your belief in the paranormal
has you talking. You are walking
through dark and abandoned places
seeing faces in the woodwork,
being a jerk to ambivalent apparitions
under the strangest conditions.
There are footsteps down the hall,
a distant call from beyond
the next room. There is no doom
in death that the living can’t provide.
There is a little voice inside your head.
Is it the voice of the dead instead?
Don’t talk back, or they’ll be return.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #451 – Other Side

THE WRONG PART OF MY OTHER (WRITE) SELF

He was a poet and hated the approximate.
Rainer Maria Rilke
from “The Journal of My Other Self”

This Walt, quite precise to a fault,
drifted away from his passion with words.
His darkness preceded him and he conceded
that his craft to him, felt combative.

Drifted away from his passion with words,
he found what he said had been said before.
That his craft to him, felt combative
is a testament to the utility of his poetic futility.

He found what he said had been said before,
he felt like a repetitive bore and what’s more,
his testament to the utility of his poetic futility
was an admission to his failing at maintaining his pace.

He felt like a repetitive bore and what’s more,
writing the glut of emotions he had felt and feels
was an admission to his failing at maintaining his pace.
Prolific was terrific for a while, but it wears on one’s soul.

Writing the glut of emotions he has felt and feels
dealt with his life of love and anger and despair and loss.
Prolific was terrific for a while, but it wears on one’s soul,
and losing control of your muse was like verbal abuse!

Having dealt with his life of love and anger and despair and loss,
exposed the truth about his other self; made words seem wrong!
And losing control of your muse was like verbal abuse!
Lately he tended to struggle with the words he’d use!

Exposed, the truth about his other self made words seem wrong!
His darkness preceded him and he conceded
that he tended to struggle with the words he’d use!
This Walt is quite precise to a fault!

© Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides Prompt #450: Something goes wrong

LEARNING FORGIVENESS IN THE RECEIVING OF SAME

Let bygones be,
you’ve seen the error of your ways
and it’s been days since
your apple cart has been toppled.
The slight against you was just that,
slight. You might be wise to reprise
your failings amidst the wailing
and gnashing of teeth. Life is short,
but it can be sweet if you let it.
Swallow your pride and forget it.
Don’t let it ruin another day.
You had much to say yourself, leave it
on the shelf and accept your part
of the blame. It’s a doggone shame.
Much like love, the forgiveness your get
is equal to the forgiveness you give.
Live and let live, let bygones be.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #449 – Learning _____

LEARNING THE HARD WAY

The school of hard knocks
will knock your sock off
if you’re not careful. Be aware,
full of suspicion and position
yourself to put credence in lessons
offered, proffered for your retention,
not to mention your well being.
That’s seeing the forest for the trees.
Life could be a breeze if we pay her heed,
and cede to her detail and instruction.
Our destruction is in the balance
in this valance of existence.
Get up to fight again. Failure?
Not an option. Take your lumps
and up the ante. Keep yourself in the game,
the school of hard knocks takes no blame.

(C) Walter J Wojtanik – 2018

Poetic Asides with Robert Lee Brewer – Prompt #449 – Learning _____