The Cynic of Love

By PoeticMeditations

The phrase, “All you need is love,” is nothing but a lie;
Without air, food or water, we would all simply die.
It’s a chemical response to something that we like.
Attractive faces cause our brain’s dopamine to spike.
Romance is the word used in place of copulation;
A biological urge to increase the population.

It’s money, not love, that really makes the world go ’round.
Investing in stocks and bonds is financially sound.
Interest in the principle is what you can obtain.
Love’s investment results in nothing but grief and pain;
A mere commodity to make money anyway.
Ask any0ne who’s gotten married how much they had to pay.

For those who can’t find love, poor beggars can’t be choosers.
In the game of love, we all end up being losers.
The one that got away? It’s probably for the best.
Plenty of fish in the sea that look like all the rest.
Love is not the end-all/be-all that it seems to be.
I prefer the romance and the dream of the wide, open sea.

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The Songbird Seller Along the Quay

By PoeticMeditations

Every morning I pass  by her along the quay,
Beside a table stacked with small wooden cages,
Each holding a songbird brightly chirping away,
Amidst the booksellers scrabbling for their wages,
Sitting erect with her soft hands placed in her lap.
In the mornings, “Bonjour,” in the evenings “Bonsoir.”

Draped around her thin shoulders a worn, woolen wrap.
In an angelic voice from some heavenly choir,
Singing an aria, the sweet sound crystalline,
Beautiful like one of the songs of her caged birds,
Smooth and delicate like a rich, velvety wine.
But I must be on my way to peddle my words.

One morning I pass by but she’s nowhere to be seen.
A young man selling jewelry stands now in her place.
Surprised that in my heart I feel her loss so keen,
Full of tender sadness, yet a smile on my face.
Gone somewhere the songbird seller along the quay,
I believe to her sweet dreams she has flown away.


(PoeticMeditations © 2017. All rights reserved.)

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The Songbird Seller Along the Quay

By PoeticMeditations

        Early each morning, on my way to the Bibliotèque, I would pass by her sitting besides a table stacked with small, wooden cages each holding a songbird brightly chirping away. Around her were rows of book vendors manning their opened, metal lockers full of used books. She sat there with her delicate hands in her lap and a worn, woolen wrap around her thin shoulders, softly singing an Italian aria in a pure, crystalline voice.

“Bonjour,” she greeted.


Had it been almost a year since I had arrived in the city to live in a cold-water garret overlooking the slate-gray rooftops? Too excited the first few weeks to get any work done, I spent the days taking in the usual tourist sites, walking the streets day and night, and sitting in cafés and on park benches. Money, or more precisely, the finite amount I had brought with me, motivated me to settle down to work. I began a strict routine of rising early every morning to a petit déjeuner of two croissants and a café au lait before walking to the Bibliothèque where I would arrive before the doors opened. I spent the whole morning working. Around one o’clock, I would walk to a nearby park where I would sit under a tree or on a bench to have a déjeuner consisting of a piece of cheese, a chunk of baguette, and an apple. After a long, cool drink at a public water fountain, I returned to read for two hours before getting back to work. I finished just before closing time when the librarians made their rounds announcing that the library would be closing shortly.

On my way back home, I would stop at a patisserie and pick up something cheap and filling. Back in my room, I would dine by candlelight, then read late into the night before going to bed where I slept the sleep of an honest laborer.

Each morning, I varied my route to the Bibliothèque in order to see and experience more of the city. On one particular morning, I found myself walking along a quay lined with booksellers. I stopped at one to browse at the English titles when I heard an Italian aria wafting on the morning air. I could have stood there and listened all morning, but I had work waiting for me. I returned the same way that evening and was delighted to see that she was still there.

“Bonsoir,” she said.


My notebook, a fountain pen, a bottle of ink, and a used copy of Baudelaire I had bought from one of the booksellers were all my worldly treasures I carried in my canvas rucksack. I felt like I was the one of the richest men alive.

The weeks raced by. My meager supply of Euros, like the grains of sand in an hourglass, was steadily running out as my notebook filled up with poems. The Monday morning of my last week before I had to return, a young man selling turquoise jewelry out of a black velvet display case was sitting in the spot where the bird seller had been. I walked up and down the quay, but she was nowhere to be seen. That morning, I did not get much work or reading done. I returned the same way that evening, but she wasn’t there. When I asked one of the booksellers if he had seen her, he just shrugged his shoulders. The last night, as I lay in bed, my rucksack packed for my flight out in the morning, I dreamed of the songbird seller standing on a stage in front of an audience singing an Italian aria while her songbirds flew up around her into the air.


* Sentence from Elizabeth Berg’s The Dream Lover: A Novel of George Sand.

(PoeticMeditations © 2017. All Rights Reserved.)


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By PoeticMeditations

Pretty baubles all strung together,
Fluffy topics light as a feather,
No thought given to form or rhythm,
Has become the fashionable trend.

All gone the meter, all gone the rhyme,
Alliteration is now a crime.
No time for such things like a stanza
Or what might rhyme with Tony Danza.

True confessions and ranting rages,
Random thoughts thrown down on the pages
With a quiet whisper or with a shout
To shock is what the game’s all about.

Nothing sacred, not one taboo.
Now you can write an ode to the loo.
Neither bird nor beast nor solid stone:
Prose + Poetry = Proem.

From aunts and uncles to first cousins,
“Proets” are a dime a dozen.
What poets in their graves are turning?
Robert Browning is that you squirming?

(PoeticMeditations © 2017. All rights reserved)

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Pearls Before Swine

By PoeticMeditations

A vein cut open – each drop of blood
Pools upon the page to form each word.

Lovingly handcrafted into lines,
Aged in oaken barrels like fine wine.

Till meaning and form merge into one
Diamond brilliance to match the sun.

Pearls strung together in form and rhyme
Poet! Do not cast them before swine.

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What is True Has Become a Lie

By PoeticMeditations

What is true has become a lie,
A lie has now become the truth.
Now fish can sing and pigs can fly,
The truth itself is simply moot.

We’ve all gone made – lost our senses,
Deceitfulness is now the norm.
“Tear down bridges! Build those fences!”
Can we weather this troubling storm?

Will Truth’s beacon shine bright again,
Dispel the darkness and discord,
Cause the deep wounds to heal and mend
Until greatness is again restored?

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The Hand Of Time

By PoeticMeditations

The hand of Time has touched the bloom
Which now begins to slowly droop
To end what started in the womb;
The upright head begins to stoop.

Supple edges begin to fray,
Colors start to slowly pale
Till all is turned to ashen gray;
What once was strong turns weak and frail.

Each petal will drop one by one
Till nothing’s left but barren stem.
No longer felt the warming sun;
Grows faint the light before the end.

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