Campaign Frenzy

Decisions, delusions,
Headaches, contusions,
I’m in a state of dire confusion!

This 2016 campaign
Produces intense mental strain.
Truth-sleuthing should not be such a pain.

There is this poll and that,
I can’t tell fiction from fact
So my mind changes at the drop of a hat.

The gluttonous media enjoys this grand feast.
Candidates are morphing into horrid beasts
As I try to pick one I dislike least.

Oh where are the unbiased voices
Guiding me to intelligent choices?

To think about Sanders
Can stir up my dander.

Ideas about changes in guns to tote
Means Hillary won’t get my vote.

And when it comes to Trump…
Well, consider me a mugwump.

I’m not gonna be a quitter
But for now I’m a fence sitter.

This first appeared in the local weekly paper, the Prospect-News,  in my Close to Home column.

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Summer Rap

imageDenim derrières and tie-dyed tees
Remind me of summers of the younger me,
When all was fun, no worries or fears
That cloud the summers of my boomer years.

Shorts were cut-offs made at home,
Halters and tank tops screamed Coppertone.
Sandals on my feet and radio in hand,
I walked the streets in a calmer land.

Bikes and skates and kick the can
Kept me on the move and somewhat tan.
The sidewalk gang played out till dark,
Home wasn’t far from the neighborhood park.

I work to move, to stay active now,
And avoid hot sun no matter how
White I am at the end of the day,
Which is earlier no doubt, sad to say.

But life is good with friends about,
I might move slower, but I still shout
So all can hear and enjoy those near,
Smiling thru the summer of another year.

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Disillusioned American Voters

imageAmerican voters are frustrated. A recent NYT editorial cartoon showing Trump and Hillary stranded on a desert island indicated the American public would be the winner in the upcoming election if they both stayed there.

Why are American voters disillusioned? Could it be the sense that no candidate truly represents them? Casting a vote – that privilege and responsibility Americans cherish – seems ineffectual on the national level.

Could American voters feel overwhelmed by the responsibility to affect change at the top? Perhaps it’s the thought that corruption and injustice reign throughout the nation’s governing institutions, not just in a few federal offices. Will one vote in one election year matter?

I am an American voter beginning to think I can’t help change the country’s political environment. There is an uneasy fear churning in my soul as little by little my liberties vanish.

How can voters rally to clean house on the federal level when it seems that injustice and evil are not just trickling down to take over our lives, but are swooshing toward us in a flash flood of corruption that destroys truth and freedom in its path?

Maybe it’s not the trickling – down effect that’s the culprit. Maybe corruption has been creeping up. Complacency toward political climates on the local level- in our city councils, county commissions, lower courts, law enforcement agencies, school boards, industry-has perhaps allowed small government to be the training camp for candidates who wind up on our national ballots.

If we as American voters ignore corruption on the local level, the nation’s political climate will continue to deteriorate. We can’t protest and fan the fires of change if we keep dousing those fires in our hometowns. Those who directly influence our lives in a way that those in Washington don’t should be leading the fight for truth and justice. They should not be the ones who take lightly the fact they have power over individual destinies. Justice should be doled out equally; truth should not be swept under the rug. Those in power at the local level cannot be those who use that power unethically.

“It’s been suggested that we’ve moved to a post- factual society, where evidence and truth no longer matter, and lies have equal status to the clarity of evidence.” Alexander Betts

If we can’t affect change on the local level , what makes us think we can at the federal level?

My vote matters in my hometown.

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49 and Holding! 😜

Banish the blues,  believe in tomorrow, behold

another year;

Investigate curiosity, invite joy, intimidate un-

founded fear;

Respect the future, relish the present, remember

what has been;

Toss self-doubt, talk often to pals, travel to places


Herald the heavenly, hate untruths, hold dear the

very precious;

Dance for the soul, drive different byways, delight

in cuisines delicious;

Address routine, acknowledge needs, anticipate

loads of fun.

Yearnings change. Years come and go. You’re

gifted another one.




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My Side of the Fence

The grass is always higher on my side of the fence.

At first glance to you it won’t make any sense.

Why is starting a mower harder than starting a blender?

It’s useless to pout and blame it on gender.


The battery’s not dead – that’s easy to hear

But it won’t be long till it is, I fear.

Countless tries make it and me tired.

Would be great to say on first try it fired.


Mowing’s a favorite chore of mine;

Beats inside chores any of the time

Though evidence doesn’t  match this sentiment

As vegetation soars from vanishing sediment.


So I muster the energy to use a push mower.

No motor means it’s quiet but oh so much slower.

By the time I finish one complete round

For sure the starting point can’t be found.


The sounds of the blades remind me of Dad –

Linking chains of smiles for all the fun we had

In city yards. While we played as he mowed

Seeds of precious memories were sowed.


Wild flowers I haven’t seen in a while

Remind me of Mom and make me smile.

Those tiny blossoms normally don’t peek

Through sheared blades in a lawn low and sleek.


As spring rains fall I hear the grass grow

And some remarking why doesn’t she mow

Don’t worry I am doing just that.

You may not hear it and I won’t get fat.


My face will be red but not from blushing.

My clothes will be wet but not from splashing

In the cool of the Current while riding a boat.

Could now be the time to get a pet goat


PS. If you notice some strange punctuation practices here

my comma only works when I hold one of the spacers down and then I get a gillion of them.



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Sudden. Deafening. Close. Terrifying. Fight or flight? Fight what? Fly where? Is that terror coming from this direction? Or from this way? It must be right here. Impossible! I am in the house. Run outside or stay inside? What is that pounding in my head? NO! I can’t faint. Breathe.

At the front door the terror again. I have to see it. I have to know.  My Siamese cat DaVinci many times his normal size darts in. The deafening decibels surround me. Is something falling from the sky? is it a creature stalking its prey? Stalking me?

Imagine  Paul Bunyan dragging a bow across strings on a violin the size of a semi that he is holding over you or under you or behind you. I had consumed only the recommended medicinal dose of red wine before bed so I was not having an inebriated-induced nightmare. In case you were wondering.

This morning there are no prints in the soft earth anywhere around the house.  The Siamese is not interested in joining me on the front porch. My hands hurt and my neck and shoulders are screaming for relief from adrenaline pumped suddenly through my system at 4 in the morning.

Varied wildlife roams throughout Ripley County though I cannot always tell fact from fiction since I am city born and bred. What was the source of that petrifying sound and how can I keep it away?

This first appeared in The Prospect-News in my Close to Home column.  A local yokel teased me that perhaps a possum paid me a visit. I know they visit but they are relatively quiet. A neighbor has shared that mountain lion prints have been identified up the road a ways. These creatures have also been seen on game cameras throughout the area. After listening to vaious YouTube videos I have decided it was indeed a mountain lion I was hearing.



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Summer With a Twist

School’s out.  We are getting a jump start on summer!  Whatever happened to those ‘hazy crazy lazy days’ of summer?  Plan some fun with these three action verbs in mind and prepare for summer with a twist.

*MOSEY.  Yep it’s a real word.  If you are goal-oriented a day now and then without a plan might provide a chance to savor the flavors of summer. Make a random selection from the grab-bag of destination and activity options rather than trying to cram them all into a summer that seems to grow shorter and shorter.

*BACKPACK. I don’t mean load one with a set weight and take off on a training route with a multi-mile conquest in mind.  I am thinking more along the lines of sweating less.  Using a backpack might help me get to the river’s edge with only one trip back up the hill to the car; that would be at leaving time. No cooler to lug around no basket of foods to waste.  Could I really spend several hours enjoying the Current with snacks and drinks and books that all fit into one manageable carry-all?

*EXPERIMENT. Always have Mexican food at the same spot? If  you don’t want  to swap cuisines then perhaps eat your fave in a new locale. Or try something new in a sentimental place – a different theater and/or hotel if you and your pals always head to Branson. Nothing greater than kayaking our Current?  Load up that kayak and try the Huzzah or Big Creek or the Current up at Baptist Camp.  Experiment with something new and see what unfolds on the summer calendar.

Do include a visit to a show at  Raiding the Country Vaults if you are headed to Branson soon.  Our very own Billy Yates is performing there!

This first appeared in my  Close to Home  column in The Prospect -News.

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