Tuesday, June 16, 2015


Imaginary Garden With Real Toads

They said that poetry was dead
because most of its superstars
were similarly indisposed.
But they never figured on you
and they never figured on me
to breathe some life back
into that exquisite corpse.
So fix me a salad, Caesar,
for I come to praise poetry--
not to bury it.

Poetry works for the way we live today.
It's bite-sized and makes for
a handy snack, when even the
Cliff Notes version of War and Peace
is bound to give us indigestion.

Prose stands on the corner
and waits for the bus.
Poetry glides by in a pink Cadillac convertible.
Prose beats around the bush
for chapter upon endless chapter.
Poetry says get to the point, SUCKAH,
I haven't got all day!
(If you hold your breath waiting
for the epiphany in prose,
you WILL turn purple.)

A poem has weight--
either heavy or light--
and a poem has depth,
having welled up from somewhere
deep inside you.
You can tell by the way
a poem sits upon the page
whether it's something you
want to sit with.

Poetry is highly individualistic--
no two snowflakes, and no two poems
about snowflakes are exactly alike.
Failed poetry, at the very least,
assists in perfecting one's
trash basket set shot.

Here is a sure-fire formula
for making a poem...
On a sheet of white paper
place several black dots
at random and varying
lengths from one another.

The dots are now your periods.

Connect the dots with words
and you have a poem.

Many of the world's most treasured
works were created in just this manner!

It is incumbent upon the poet
to tell the truth--even when
his truth never really happened--
and even bad poetry is good
when compared with a political speech.

As Gregory Corso said,
"Poetry is the opposite of hypocrisy."

And that's the truth.


  1. You know how I feel about poetry, Tim! Most is so personal to the writer that the average reader can't make head nor tails of it, asking themselves 'what the bleep is he talking about?'. And then the ones like you've just presented to us here can be put in paragraph form and say the very same thing. All you've done is hit the enter bar a few more times!

    That's not to say that I don't like it, only that I don't.get.the.point. But you already knew that, because we've had this discussion before. And you also know that I come back anyway, because it doesn't matter if I understand the point of poetry or not, what matters is that I try, and you throw in prose and social commentary to even things out for me!

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  2. I really enjoyed this, Tim. I don't think of myself s a poet, though I write poetry. But words - put in the right order and chosen with specific care - do stir emotions. Poetry is just one way someone can express themselves and the interpretation after creation is really up an open to the reader. I'll take poetry over politicl speeches any day of the week. :)

  3. I meant "up and open" - duh! I should proofread before I post - lol!

  4. LINDA,
    Any poem could be put in paragraph form...but then, it wouldn't be poetry, would it?

    Thanks so much...and if you're not a poet, I'll eat my baseball cap!

  5. __A journalist may believe... >Never let the facts stand in the way of a good story<.
    __A novelist may believe... >Never avoid facts that could support your story<.
    __A poet believes... >Never allow inhibitions
    to hide any facts of how you think or feel and see; you bleed your story<.

  6. I love this. ^-^ Granted, I love to read all the poems you post, but this one especially made me smile. =D

  7. «Poetry says get to the point, SUCKAH,
    I haven't got all day!»

    Funny, to me poetry says try to find the point if you can!

  8. MAGYAR,
    So nicely put...and so true!

    If you smiled, I think you got the point!

    If there IS a point--that is! :)

  9. I am a huge poetry reader. Most of the poets I know are just the best writers and observers of the human condition you could ever hope to meet. In some ways they are like jazz musicians because they constantly challenge and try to redefine form and structure.

    An excellent poem from an excellent poet, if I may say so!

  10. OH HOW I WISH I had penned that poem...Love it Tim

  11. SELMA,
    How many times can I say that coming from YOU, that is high praise?

    Hey, just start with the random black dots thing and you're on your way! lol

  12. Brillant take on writing poetry... you said so much... I have always thought of writing a book, but why waste so much time and space when you can say it all in a poem....bkm

  13. About to go fix myself a salad. lol Tim, such a fresh take on poetry, the idea of it as well as its practice today. Found myself reading this, nodding in agreement, and adding a few "write ons!"

  14. ha. love it. poetry is rather new to me...less than a year...though i have been writing poems in my heart for years...and it sure as heck beats a poilitcal speech. ha. happy oneshot!

  15. SIGNED..bkm,
    Thanks for stopping by. I can't completely disown prose, since I write that too! But I found that extolling the virtues of poetry in a whimsical way was rather a hoot.

    Enjoy the salad...and say hi to Caesar for me!

    Thanks Brian...I'm afraid we're in for more political speeches as the mid-term election draws near, so let's drown them out by shouting poetry!

  16. Dear Tim,
    this write really took me,cos i don't consider myself a poet before!yes, i write and words invade me..but i work with my inspiration,an amateur..never knew how i did exactly..all i know is that it comes out,just like that from my heart out..:)
    so you see,i really enjoyed your post..thanks for sharing with one shot..:)

  17. What a great reflection
    while Dustus goes to make a salad, I'm going to connect the dots at One Shot.
    thanks for adding this to our long list of good poems

    Moon smiles

  18. and thats nothing but the truth !!! enjoyed this :) ask any poetry lover .. how much a simple verse adds pleasure to your day !!

  19. well i a poet? i write poetry and i hope my peers judge me as such..but why do i write poetry.. because i am no good at grammar and i seem to be more successful with a shorter verse!!!! occasionally i move to other things but when there is so much flitting around in my head its great to release through for political speeches where is the love, where is the depth, the feeling, the longing to share..poetry crosses divides..look at One Shot and how many corners of the earth take part..i am on a ramble that you have guided me on..thank you..Pete

  20. do you hear me shout? YES YES YES - poetry isn't dead - it's as much alive as you write and it can be that pink cadillac and well up from somewhere within you - wow - enjoyed reading this Tim! (my son's name is Tim as well...)

  21. I LOVE this. I like poetry about poetry. I like that you brought in other's words. I like that you told the truth and I liked the way you wrapped it. Good job and well written. Thank you.Gay

  22. Mmm, this piece was a full meal.

  23. There is so much truth in this. On the other hand, I'm a fan of prose too, and often find poetry in a well-turned phrase buried within a tome of prose. It's like eating a good meal. A little of this, a little of that, and I'm a happy reader.

  24. Really loved your first sentence. I agree with Talon, I don't think of myself as a poet, but a writer who's work has a poetic feel at times. As Popeye would say, "I yam what I yam" and I guess so is my writing. Great piece, sir.

    Thank you...and your poetry definitely comes from the heart.

    I hope all my readers who enjoy poetry will check out ONE SHOT--just click on the link in this poem (word: "poetry") and see what it's all about!

    Thanks for the comment and so glad to have you.

    Like the Led Zeppelin song...RAMBLE ON, my friend!

    Sending best wishes your way--I enjoyed your One Shot poem so much!

    Thanks so much for stopping by.

    I'm glad you were able to gorge on that! LOL

    Poetry and prose--equally enjoyable, according
    to our mindset.

    Thanks so much. I'm a fan of Popeye...but Olive Oyl needs to put on some weight...TOOT TOOT!

  26. Timoteo:

    What an interesting way to present poetry, full of wit and tasty tidbits, clever and poetic. The Caesar salad and the cliff notes, hooked me right in.

    Nice one stop,


  27. Poetry's returning in the everyday things - even pink Cadillacs. Good onbe, Timeteo.

  28. JOANNY,
    Thanks...nice to see you here.

    I find myself waxing poetic...even when I'm not waxing anything!

  29. A poem has weight--
    either heavy or light--
    and a poem has depth,
    having welled up from somewhere
    deep inside you.

    Loved these lines! A poem always manages to surface from somewhere deep inside of our hearts and express the raging emotions that we feel :D

    Well penned! :D

  30. Prose stands on the corner
    and waits for the bus.
    Poetry glides by in a pink Cadillac convertible.

    What an excellent observation, Tim. Both prose and poetry serve their purpose after all.

    1. Exactly. Thee are many praises for prose, as I write it too--but in this one poetry reigns!

  31. "All things I write are fiction, even my truisms I list as such."
    __ Poetry, leaps into the mind through each reader's eye.
    __Nice, Tim. _m

    1. Thanks, my man. I think there is always an element of truth in fiction, and an element of fiction in what most people pass off as "the truth." lol

  32. Ha.. at least what I write is better than political speech.. love the image of a pink cadillac. :-)

  33. Encore! Encore! Thank you for the inspiration tucked into my jeans pocket for a sunny-less day :)

  34. You knocked it out of the park! Loved every line, especially poetry turning the corner in a pink cadillac!!!!!! And a convertible, at that! Way cool.

    1. I once did a radio remote in a pink Cadillac convertible...dat was way cool!

  35. Love this so much, Tim! It's a rallying cry, aaaaahhhhhh yes!
    My thoughts exactly: Gets right to the point, we ain't got all day!
    Yep. YEP. LOVE. Thanks! xo

    1. Ain't got all day...just gimmie a snack! Oh, you make a great PBJ sandwich, Marian--lol

  36. "Even bad poetry is good when compared with a political speech" this!! Love this whole thing, actually :-)

  37. Excellent - you have shared so many wonderful reasons why poetry is to be loved! Indeed poetry is the opposite of hypocrisy. Poetry speaks truth!

    1. Thanks Mary...I was just reflecting on how many poems have been written about someone with your name!

  38. Like movies about making movies, like books about writers, poems about poetry exude an authenticity, honesty, & savage sardonic insights; you earned 4 fist-pumps, 3 oh-yeahs, 2 damn rights, 1 boy howdy & half a hurrah.

    1. It's that half a hurrah that so touches my heart.

  39. if that's not the truth... and poetry is far from being dead

  40. "Poetry says get to the point, SUCKAH"

    Ha. I love that.

  41. Indeed...anyone who says poetry is dead probably drives one of those ugly boxy hybrid thingys instead of a long double wide pink Cadillac convertible. Well penned. I started writing poetry as a child and wrote through university but stopped and then, started back a couple of years ago. What a wonderful thing it was to come home and find it waiting patiently and happily wagging its tail. Hayes Spencer is Kanzensakura

  42. trash basket set shot :) Oh I enjoyed your poem very much..poetry does live!

  43. I loved Every line of this!

  44. Ah.. yes.. for me.. poems do not think.. mechanical cognition..
    they live aLive.. social cognitiOn.. innate instinct and
    intuitive heArt.. label comes last..
    substance.. soUL poeTry..
    spiRit expressing

  45. Love the tone -- the joy -- the playfulness! And any poet who mentions Gregory Corso is a.o.k. in my book! :D