Micropoetry Monday: The Lighter Side

Mary Katherine McFeeney
of Washingham High School,
Class of 1988,
had been a “Who’s Who?” in her heyday,
but Hellen Devlin,
the girl who’d watched M.K.
since their freshman year—
becoming an unofficial M.K.M. scholar
& penning the M.K.M. Fictionary—
had wondered why & how
“the girl most likely
to spread more than good cheer”
had ever achieved such acclaim,
for M.K. had never known what was what
but rather,
who was on first . . .
& second . . . 
& third,
giving the word “Homecoming”
a whole ‘nother meaning.

Born a “Children of the Damned” blond,
The Girl grew up believing
that she became invisible
whenever she closed her eyes—
only to realize that with invisibility
came blindness,
but as she grew & her hair darkened,
she actually got brighter,
that is, until she became nostalgic
for her happy-go-bumpy childhood,
& she reverted to the bottle,
lamenting the dark roots
that were just a branch
of the Black Irish part
of her family tree.

He had a face for radio,
she, a voice for print journalism.
They were only 10’s,
that is,
if they were added together,
so they married not up
but equal to one another—
with her writing what he said
& him saying what she wrote,
they lived fair-to-middlin’ ever after.

Micropoetry Monday: Opposites

Opposites

The Shutterfly edition

When the crime scene photographer
met the wedding photographer,
the former brought stark realism to her life,
& the latter brought whimsical idealism to his.

They were the bloodhounds of bloodlines,
for she used DNA databases to catch cold-case criminals,
he, to reconnect people with their long-lost relatives.
Her work brought justice, even as his brought joy;
they saw what they did not as a career,
but rather, as the fulfillment of a calling from a higher power.

He spent his life preserving old things;
she spent hers creating new ones.
When she found him in the archives
& he found her in the newsroom,
they realized they both had something
to offer the other:
Perspective.

Childhood Memories: The Luck of the Irish

20180317_204718

I remember, years ago, when my brother was little, good things seemed to happen to him. (He once won a Beetlejuice contest and we all got a free trip to Hollywood, though it was a real downer when my parents went trolling for celebrity headstones).

I remember expecting to be picked up in a limousine, but an old man that reminded me of Alfred from the Batman show came for us in a Lincoln, holding up a sign that said Brooks. (Our name was Booker, which I never liked because kids would replace the k with a g.)

So yes, Kel (then Kelly), was lucky, and I would get so sick of my parents saying he had “the luck of the Irish,” to which I would exclaim, “He’s not Irish!”

Well, many years later, my parents would send their spit to have their DNA tested and so it turned out, he was.

We were.

And I am so glad that is something my mom got to do before she passed away, even though Dad got on her nerves with all his lamenting that she didn’t have any Jewish blood (which he though “prestigious”).

Dad, however, was thrilled when he found out he was one-third Scandinavian, or “Viking” (as he calls it). I’d considered getting him one of those helmets with the horns on it, though I could’ve sworn he was French, being so passive.

But even though DNA tells us where we came from, what we’re made of, and sometimes, where we’ve been (outer space in Scott Kelly’s case, for example), it doesn’t tell us where we’re going.

That is the story we get to write.

Writer’s Digest November Poem-a-Day 2017 Challenge #21. Theme: Deconstruction/Reconstruction

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Deconstructing Sarah

Constructed of the genes of my co-creators–
the sassy Black Irish,
the passive, graying Scandinavian (could’ve sworn Dad was French)–
I end up a shade of Romanian white,
sprinkled with freckles
where either angels kissed me
or peed on me.

I am broken down, reduced,
and deconstructed daily
by the elements of life:
Age, worry, stress, distress,
illness, frustration, exhaustion,
depression, desperation,
and sometimes anger.

Optimism has seen me through hunger and homelessness,
through carlessness and marital strife,
through my child’s unknown diagnosis,
through feelings of friendlessness and
the collapsing of my seemingly wonderful life.

Is Optimism the Holy Spirit’s name,
or is it something incomprehensible
that dwells inside me?
For does it not haunt my temple
in a pleasing way?

Is it I who holds onto Optimism
or does it hold on to me?
For everything in my life is broken,
but not shattered.
The cracks will always be there,
but that’s how the light comes in.
That’s where the wrinkles come from.

Optimism is why I’ve done
perhaps
everything I’ve ever done.
It is why I’ve chosen to stay here,
why I’ve chosen to go there.
It is why I know what I know,
and chose not to know
what I do not wish to know.

Every gray hair–
like the rings of a tree–
show the world
that I have made it this far.
And someday,
the day will come
when I will wash it away
with a five-dollar box of natural auburn,
and my body will run red with the steaming shower water
as if I have bled from every pore.

http://www.writersdigest.com/whats-new/2017-november-pad-chapbook-challenge-day-21

Micropoetry Monday: Family Dynamics

When they did their DNA,
Dad traded in his wooden shoes
for a Viking helmet,
but Mom could not trade in
her Black Irish hair
for the auburn that could have been hers
if she’d been born sooner.

His siblings and cousins had been close
when they were children,
but when the patriarch,
who said family was everything,
passed away,
it proved that he was the everything
that had held the family together.

Dad wore many uniforms,
Mom wore many hats,
but as for me & my brother,
we wore many masks.

When the Irish Catholic met the Roman Catholic,
they had Irish potato gnocchi
& spaghetti with soda bread.
They made it work because,
like many others,
they were all trying to get to the same place—
a gastronomical heaven.

She’d been an idealist before she’d married,
seeing a life of in-laws that were like blood &
double dating with mutual friends,
but when the honeymoon rose again,
his love was all that shone.

Micropoetry Monday: Lawlessness & Disorder

The contents turned to ash,
time blowing away the dust of the past,
degrading the DNA,
so that justice delayed became justice denied.

Jill Ellen Roth had suffered for the sins of their envy,
for being beautiful,
their sloth, for being an overachiever,
their greed, for being wealthy.
To them, they were not because she was.

Her conception of justice birthed a career in law,
but when there was a miscarriage of it
due to a poor delivery,
she wrote a book
& overturned a verdict.

She obeyed the letter of the law,
he, the spirit of the law;
they each broke the other,
canceling each other out.

He was a famous plagiarist,
stealing the words of his betters,
until he wrote the story of his ill-gotten fame,
& his victims became his lessers.

#Micropoetry Monday: The Lighter Side

Mixed-Up Nuts
Peanut, Almond, & Cashew
went to get their DNA checked,
& found they had been totally cracked;
for Peanut, who was the only one
who liked to be boiled,
turned out not to be one of them,
but a legume.

Type A was the Bachelor of Science,
Type B, the Associate of Arts,
but Type O had University appeal—
being a Universal Donor.

Orange hated being lumped in with Apple,
as he was quite pithy & had a zest for life,
whereas Apple often ended up sauced.

Like a potato chip,
she was salted &
browned to a crisp.
When she was bagged,
she was just full of air.

Hammer, Anvil, & Stirrups
wanted to start a band called The Ossicles,
but sister Cochlea was too wired.
She told them to stop the racket,
& so the boys decided to translate sounds,
waxing at all hours.

The Madcap Ginger

Lucinda Bahl catered and pandered to the one-percenters,

which was quite laughable,

as she thought they were greedy bastards

behind their majestic swagger.

~

She always greeted them quite obsequiously in disguise,

barefaced and blushing,

in a maid’s uniform concealing her tramp stamp—

a hint at her lower class from Flushing.

By dawn, she cleaned their houses;

by dusk, she cleaned their clocks.

~

In manic states of unrest and undress,

she was quite fashionable with body paint caked on as camouflage,

as she skulked through her employers’ McMansions,

replacing their Jackson Pollocks

with copies that mimicked the worthless works.

~

She was a zany, green-eyed bandit,

dauntless, equivocal and cold-blooded

a klepto with dual personalities,

who often hobnobbed with her alter ego.

~

She drugged (or roofied) her masters,

rolling the women for their jewels,

then noiselessly, in bare feet,

tipsy-toed to the other side of the bed

and reached under the bedroom blanket for the family jewels.

~

Dressed as Greg Brady,

her eyes would turn dark with excitement as she hurried,

finishing with a gust of breath.

Her right hand knew not what her left one did,

and her arms were like those of Olympians.

~

Every year, she would have a baby bump,

which always aroused a kerfuffle.

DNA was a woman’s best friend,

and a compromise would be reached without a scuffle.

~

Mr. and Mrs. would negotiate for the baby,

in exchange for the boodle,

and none was the wiser,

for they didn’t use their noodle.

It was a safe bet for Lucinda Bahl–

this belle of the balls.

~

Being a millionaire heiress herself,

her father being the inventor of the Spice Racketeer,

and collapsible luggage,

she was still lonely.

Prone she was to metamorphize into a generous, frugal soul,

donating plasma for free juice and cookies,

which became a strange attention addiction.

~

Nevertheless, she was remorseless

when she was in her right mind (or left brain),

for she blamed the haves for the have nots,

that littered her lawn like gnomes with their deafening cries,

making her gloomy and disheartened.

~

Then it became apparent there was an outbreak

of some disease which caused lots of bloodstained puking,

gnarled knees,

an epileptic elbow,

and an eyeball so lazy it wouldn’t bother to open.

The only cure was a glass of skim milk,

which would ease the discontent.

It was quite the source of gossip.

~

The men (all friends) began to realize they’d been had,

and when Lucinda came to work wearing an eyepatch,

they decided to fix her unwelcome wagon once and for all.

They had suffered character assassination from the media,

the academe,

and from countless anonymous online critics;

they had suffered savagery from their children,

torture from their wives,

who took delight in besmirching them to their mothers,

taking them to court and ruining their lives.

~

They wanted to charge Lucinda with unlawful seduction,

though they realized it was all circumstantial evidence,

for Yonkers was going bonkers with it.

~

Lucinda’s hair was no longer lustrous like sunshine,

her face radiant like moonbeams,

but lackluster and flawed.

She looked like the low-rent kind of broad

who lived rent-free in her head.

~

Lucinda the Accused,

became Lucinda the new star of TLC,

with lots of advertising from social media,

and with the backing of varied sponsors such as

Eastborough Baptist Church of the Quiverfulls.

~

“The Real Housemaid of NYC”, her label,

was obscene, but marketable,

and the gnomes had their hero.

Many assumed it had been a premeditated publicity stunt.

It was unreal, monumental,

this champion of the “working class”,

who was just a rehash of white trash.

~

She became a fixture on the cover of Starr–

a courtship that would last for 15 minutes.

 

However, it was never enough exposure,

and she got a show on MSNBC.

Hardly impartial,

but an open platform to rant about the dangers of breathing

and anything Bush,

pandering to their audience of 1000,

impeding her stardom.

She missed the ratings,

and so she filmed herself submerging in a bathtub of iced tea,

complete with a Dalmatian,

uploading it to YouTube,

becoming a cult sensation.

~

However, her girls, once fans, had become jaded,

even though she got an interview with the President,

who was quite a pedant,

much to Fox News’ amazement.

~

Her daughters remained with their sperm donors,

in their birthplaces in the five boroughs of New York,

becoming Olympians in pole-vaulting.

~

Lucinda’s ill-gotten gains dwindled,

and she retired from her life of psychosis and crime,

feeling more secure in a place she belonged–

the last star of “Stars Behind Bars”.

~

She’d reached her summit,

like a great mountaineer,

but at the end,

had groveled for a sex change while on the mend.

~

The buzzer went off,

and Lucinda, now beached

and pumped full of meds,

awoke from her little trip back in time,

feeling tranquil without a dime.

~

Tis the end of my ode to those who dream of a life of reality stardom,

and to those who watch it.

For today’s prompt, take a word or two (I took it a step farther and used ALL of these:  http://www.shakespeare-online.com/biography/wordsinvented.htmlinvented by William Shakespeare, make it the title of your poem, and write your poem. 

What you are about to read is truly absurd (which is one of my favorite words, as it can be used to describe many things).  It’s sort of a riches-to-rags story involving a dizzy redhead and is a satire/spoof of reality TV.