featured in the poetry forum May 19, 2020  :: 0 comments

Charlie Baguette’s brother Davy
had polio and
used a crutch;
he stood by the porch and
played 45’s on a record player
as Charlie and I stripped the
thorny pulp off horse chestnuts
and put the ebony nuts into
a brown shopping bag
and threw the nuts that night
at the Camel’s house across the street
until cops came with their shining blue
light and
we ran
into the backyard shadows–
the Camel’s thought themselves better
than us, and were mean too
like the German Shepard they kept chained
in their yard;
Davy played Running Bear
Loved Little White Dove
(with a love that never died).
It was the beat of the tom-tom
had set Charlie and me on the

editors note:

All rash acts are rational when driven by a drum. (This poem comes from Wayne’s recently released collection, Escape from Planet Crouton. Congrats, Wayne! Read Mike Fiorito’s review of it in What’s New. Buy your copy of it here. Check it out!. – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum October 28, 2019  :: 0 comments

feeling lonely and
on a hot summer afternoon,
no one to play with
or talk to
nothing I know to do–
I sat on the walkway
beside the Larson’s house
next door; ants began to
come up out of cracks
and the little volcano-shaped dirt
piles, a vast horde writhing
on the plain of the walkway
as other ants
with wings
flew in out of the
blue sky and
a battle began,
squadrons of winged ants
attacking the ground forces
a ferocious struggle
like Hastings or Waterloo
the Queen of the wing-less
crew rolled over
her winged foe,
the dead piled up
the battle raged
the afternoon slid into
I did not hear my grandmother
call me in to

editors note:

A god goes deaf with fascination. Dinner be damned. – mh clay

In Case of Emergency

featured in the poetry forum August 17, 2019  :: 0 comments

I spent days in the streets of the
city and
nights sleeping on a bench
in Longfellow Park
(some fucking poet he must have been)
and woke with the back of my head
flat as the bench.

I drank whiskey to help me,
to sleep and
for other reasons;
tried to keep an eye open
for demons,
had a job but
like Jesus
nowhere to lay my head
there were no rooms in the city
to rent
until one night
one opened at the Y
and I filled the preregistration form out
after being told by the clerk
to fill in the space labeled
“in case of emergency, notify”
I crumpled the form up and
threw it at him across
the desk,
because who the hell was he
to tell me what to do?

back on my bench,
I realized that
I must be nuts.

editors note:

It comes with strings attached, but none to you. Bench bound, again. (We welcome Wayne to our crazy congress of Contributing Poets with this submission. Read more of his madness on his new page – check it out.) – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum May 6, 2019  :: 0 comments

I go into Cumberbund Farms
to buy a newspaper.
A catchy pop-tune on the
a fat girl
at the ATM machine
gives me the once-over;
“Steve” makes change of
my sawbuck
as a short guy
behind me
exudes an aura of menace
that is hard to ignore…
Out by the pumps
pretty girls
get in
get out
of cars
(but do not come inside).
Thin roadside trees with buds
on their branches
sway in the breeze.

editors note:

We are all in a meanwhile to someone. – mh clay

Ice Cream

featured in the poetry forum August 20, 2018  :: 0 comments

a maple walnut ice cream cone
at Eileen’s Dairy Bar
where Judy
a teenage waitress
Eileen’s daughter
tall and slender,
“a rose yet to bloom”
I told Johnny Garibaldi
who asked what I thought
of her
the words coming unbidden
from my lips
he blabbed it
all over
and I regretted many times
“a rose yet to bloom”
shouted on the street,
on the school bus,
I stayed away from Eileen’s
until desperate for an ice cream
pistachio, butter pecan, black raspberry
I put my thin dime
into Judy’s hand
and she did not say
“thank you.”

editors note:

Ridiculed for context (not held), when all you want is ice cream (with sprinkles, please.) – mh clay


featured in the poetry forum April 17, 2016  :: 0 comments

no kids
no wife;
sometimes it seems
as if life
is not worth
the living,
and like I missed the boat
but then
whenever I start to write
I think
this art is what
I have to love:
as fickle as it is
as un-glamorous in the
as moody in the night
as meaningless as it
sometimes seems–
in all its flaws
and wrinkles
it still comes through
for me
still there
whenever I reach
for it,
from the dark
or from the most desolate

editors note:

Fickle mistress though she be; can’t live with her… – mh clay