In Praise of “No’s”

Most of our actions and words
come from our greedy muscles
jumping with assenting “yes’s”
to whatever attractive chunks
our blender-brains throw up
to catch our attention.

If not for our “no’s”,
we’d be no more than
a stalagmite climbing
pointlessly towards its source.

If not for “no’s”
we’d be but a cold-avalanche
tumbling in mindless destruction
until spread momentum-thin.

“No’s” challenge our inner snakes,
add a little more substance
to that thing called a “soul”.
With each “no” we can see
what is hidden behind apparent fate.

— Sabio Lantz, April 2019

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DayLight SavingsThe Blessings of Daylight Savings Time

The sun set much later today,
and I quietly thanked my government,
for their intervention.

We love sitting out in the late light
sharing refreshing wine after work
and playing later without guilt.

But mostly,
I am thankful for the reminder,
that Time is a human contrivance.

Please comment on the reading I experimented on, while you read my poem.

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The Unholy Rule of Law

A heaven-circling twisting-trickster
soared-bored above his proper abode,
Screeching with dust-tongued dark-vowels,
waking-wide Shaitan’s scythe-eyed spies.

Grave-groping raven-riders swooped
with laughing-grabs wrapping the writhing
in muffled toes and muted mouth
returning him to rightful wrath.

— by Sabio Lantz, April 2019

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I hope this sound track (my first experiment) aids in the feeling.


Prompt: This is the story of a spirit who escaped from perdition but is spotted by the Devil’s spies and put back in his rightful place — in case it is hard to understand. Analogies to the reader’s own psyche are left to the reader.  I usually don’t write like this, but Laura, @ dVerse Poets, asks us to write a Dylanesque poem by using at least four of the hyphenated compound words she pulled from his work (I used seven and created 2 more), with a goal of loving the words.  “Shaitan“, by the way, is a transliteration of the Arabic word for Satan — the Zoroastrian import to Judaism during the Babylonian captivity which then also wonderfully feeds much of Christianity’s horrific mythology.

Poetry would be my Tomb

If I had to rhyme all the time
and other styles were thought taboo
poetry would be my tomb.

Thankfully verse has evolved, for
I’m sure I’d drink too much brew
if I had to rhyme all the time.

If no stanzas were malformed
and meter always fit a rule
poetry would be my tomb.

I’d rather wear a uniform
or be a mendicant in Katmandu
if I had to rhyme all the time.

If slanted rhyme had not been born
or free-verse shunned and poopooed,
poetry would be my tomb.

Etiquette too I flout, or
my dear sanity would be askew.
If I had to rhyme all the time
poetry would be my tomb.

— by Sabio Lantz, April 2019

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Prompt: This is my fifth and and my final, final villanella prompted by Grace, @dVerse Poets, who challenges us to write yet another villanella but this time with slanted rhyme. The villanella rhyme structure is as follows and my choices of some slants are listed after:
A1, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2/ a, b, A1, A2.
A1-A2: time -> tomb (t-m consonance slant rhyme)
a: for -> malformed -> uniform –> born –> , or
b: taboo –> brew –> rule –> Katmandu –> poopooed –> askew

As always more than polite, careful comments, I covet criticisms, suggestions and questions.

Letting Go

FIctioneer_19-04-05

credit: © Ronda Del Boccio

Challenge: This is my very first attempt at flash fiction: a story  of less than 100 words with beginning, middle and end based on the photo to the right supplied by Rochelle for Friday Fictioneers, see other participants here.  And please, corrections, suggestions and questions are ALWAYS coveted!
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Letting Go

Nathan complained to the school about the stadium field light which blared brightly through his bedroom window. But there was still no reply for a month now. The light aggravated Nathan’s Afghanistan PTSD by reminding him of blinding flares that had been used in violent fire fights.

Tonight, Nathan took out his M48 Patriot hunting rifle to shoot the light when he heard the stadium crowd cheering. A smile came over his face as he remembered his childhood. He put down his rifle and decided to get a thick shade for the window.

(word count = 93)

I Listen to my Sweetheart Play Piano

Her hands lift notes in flight
from the keys like a swallow flock
as the wind blows through our trees.

She feels my eyes enjoy her
as she sways to Beethoven and Bach.
Her hands lift notes in flight.

How quickly the years blur,
yet they hum as we stroll on our walk,
as the wind blows through our trees.

Our sighs roll like a soft purr,
even as we fear the speed of the clock.
Her hands lift notes in flight

In our decision we will feel assured
of our chorus’ value at the final knock,
as the wind blows through our trees.

Tonight I naïvely bathe in her myrrh.
Ignoring time: at fate I won’t balk.
Her hands lift notes in flight
as the wind blows through our trees.

—by Sabio Lantz, April 2019


Prompt: This is my fourth and last entry for Sarah, @dVerse Poets, who challenges us to write a poem using the form called a “villanella” which has the following structure:
A1, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2/ a, b, A1, A2.
Comments, criticisms, suggestions and questions always coveted.

Contrary Methods

Contrary Methods

With various challenges in our days:
the prairies and rivers we cross.
We may need contrary methods and ways.

A stiff upper lip can be just fine
when our world is lost in chaos –
with various challenges in our days.

Yet there are times a soft open mind
serves us best after a bit of a toss.
We may need contrary methods and ways.

Likewise, even merriment and wine,
can prove an aid amidst certain loss.
With various challenges in our days.

Revolution & riots may be a sign
that our present way is an albatross.
We may need contrary methods and ways.

There is no need to quickly decline
the foreign options we come across.
With various challenges in our days,
we may need contrary methods and ways.

— by Sabio Lantz, April 2019


Prompt: This is my third entry for Sarah, @dVerse Poets, who challenges us to write a poem using the form called a “villanella” which has the following structure:  A1, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2 / a, b, A1 / a, b, A2/ a, b, A1, A2.  Comments, criticisms, suggestions and questions always coveted.  Please note the ironic slant rhyme on “chaos”.

Inspiration: A young man I know recently is handling a certain college rejection well and says he is using William Henley’s poem “Invictus” as a constant pep talk. Henley went through terrible things in his life and wrote this stoic poem which is used in Britain often to support that stiff upper lip. I think that such a method is often useful, but for this young man I also recommend (when appropriate) developing openness of mind and heart and trusting vulnerability at times. Indeed, one my my favorite Vajrayana Buddhist ideas is that of Upaya — skillful means.