December 1, 2010

RITUAL (second tier decorations)


In the cold attic they wait.
The heat of summer long gone,
the chill of December wheezing through
eave vents, we pull down drop-stairs
and peer into the darkness above.
Flip the light, start shifting boxes
hand them down to the second floor.
Sort house decorations to the top of the stairs,
boxes of ornaments and tree lights
into the spare room.
Boxes done, light off, stairs up.

Begin the first floor boxes.
Sorting and primping.
The singing mouse goes on the TV.
The snowman collection to the mantel.
The Santa collectibles to the breakfront.
The mistletoe to the doorway, and the wire mesh basket
to the finishing nail on the back of the front door
to await Christmas cards that will overflow.
The tree light box decorations to the end of the sofa
next to the three-foot stuffed Santa.
Another Santa sits on the stairs awaiting cover of darkness
to trip someone. (Usually me.)

And on and on it goes for hours
until all the good decorations
are out and the second tier decorations
are back in their boxes, the boxes that go
up to the attic to await the passing
of the holiday when all the ornaments
will be together again in the silent darkness
of our attic.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used without written permission.

BTW - That chemistry set in the back never did come to anything good except in the decision not to pursue the sciences...
******************

November 30, 2010

FINGERNAILS


Fingernails scratch the paper,
They point at a blank page.
A voice says, "Write something!"
So, he writes: "Fingernails
scratch the paper,
They point to a blank page."
#468
1974


-- Copyright © 1974, 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.
First published in DAYS YOU KNEW ME.
Written overlooking the baseball fields in Brookdale Park, Montclair/Bloomfield, N.J.

November 29, 2010

ONE TRUE LOVE

ONE TRUE LOVE

Did you spend the last fifty years with her
in the morning kitchen worrying together
through evening bouts of doubt
Are the children safe?
The grand kids okay?
Will the K-car start tomorrow?
Can we afford to fix it if it won’t?
What’s on cable TV tonight?
Is your dog getting enough cheese?

Did your one true love leave you
looking like a frigging penguin
standing alone outside the prom hall
with that stupid look on your face?

What about those wild nights
and the long rides
and the long talks?
Where did those endless roads lead?
But for your one true love to someone else
and you shifting through an empty cupboard.
Have you carried around your broken heart
crushed so long ago by your one true love
or have you mended and moved on
to find the one other person in this world
who could love you this much?

Do the stitches in your mended heart still sting?
Do they twitter and twitch with reminded regrets
on those days when nothing will go your way
and you long for the one true love who got away,
forgetting for an instant the one who holds your hand?

- By Anthony Buccino
From AMERICAN BOY: Pushing Sixty

On Kindle

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Photo and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

November 28, 2010

WHAT'S IT LIKE TO BE

What’s it like to be
Married to different people
At different times, of course,
But how is it different?
Do you spend a lot of time
Comparing this one with that one?
Do you try not to repeat mistakes
That you’ve learned?
What is it like
Each day to be with
Somebody who is
Different than the one
You thought you’d spend
The rest of your days with?

- By Anthony Buccino
From AMERICAN BOY: Pushing Sixty
On Kindle
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.

November 27, 2010

FIRST KISS


No wonder he had to steal a kiss! (1970)
My first kiss came on a cold November night,
A Saturday after Thanksgiving in a stranger’s church.

My first kiss was a surprise, not for me,
I’d been thinking about it all night.
But she was surprised when she tried
to shake my hand in peace I charged in
and stole that kiss.

Her light blue eyes – I am still remembering
And the round cheeks of her smiling face
That Saturday I kissed her.
It was the only time.
On Monday we headed back to Jersey
And I never saw her again.

- By Anthony Buccino
From AMERICAN BOY: Pushing Sixty

On Kindle

Remembering November 1970

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

November 26, 2010

AQUARIUM

AQUARIUM


Somehow it seemed
I got everything I wanted.
I wanted a German shepherd,
I got a mutt named Butch.

I wanted an aquarium
just like my friend Rich had.
His had guppies and swordfish
and neon tetras, catfish and snails, too.

I wanted an aquarium
and the fish and the purple gravel
and the lighted lid and aerator pump
and the wrought iron stand
that went with it all.

I wanted to set up the pump
that made the bubbles
come out of the diver's mask.

Dad said no to the fish tank
and Ma said I'd pay for it myself
and Dad said, in his best dad voice,
"That's not the point."
He never said what the point was.

My aquarium had angel hair in the filter
and fish down below a floating wooden block
the turtles sat on after I fed them baloney
in the water, or until they got soft and died.

On the bottom, in the gravel
I set up Dad’s shells from the Fijis.
Rich and I kept Grant's pet department
going and made fun of the old lady
who sold plecostomus catfish.

My guppies all ate their babies
and the other fish got ich.

I kept that aquarium through
my teen years and then
set it up again in my house.

But lately it's been in the attic
for how many years, who knows?
I know now I never knew
what I wanted
and I still don't.

- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

November 25, 2010

DON’T TRUST MYSELF

DON’T TRUST MYSELF

I don’t trust myself
to be here years from now
When it’s time to retire,
kick off my shoes, and
Slip into that coma of retirement.

It’s a matter of all those things
that came before
Finally coming around
to get their due
And collect the toll to pay
that appears too large.

I don’t trust myself to change
the few things left to change
That would make up for decades past
in the few decades to come
And alter the visions
the soothsayer’s seen.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

November 24, 2010

PALS

PALS

In the middle of the night
the TV lights the room
he snores in the recliner
the big dog alongside him
snores almost in unison.
The TV show neither one sees
and neither one hears,
a movie repeated from before
when they fell asleep
at the early edge of night.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

******************

November 23, 2010

ALL THE BEST FOODS

ALL THE BEST FOODS

Turns out the little pills
they assign you every day
that fix your cholesterol
and manage your sugar
and keep your blood steady
and fix a bunch of things
that won't fix themselves
and as you take that
handful of meds
you are reminded
to drink more water
because water is good for you
but not too much water, you know,
you have a separate pill for that
And remember those pills
you take by the handful
some work best on an empty stomach
and some work best
after you've eaten a meal
but with all of them you'll find
the foods you ate all your life
and all your favorites
are the foods you can no longer have
and this will help you live longer
thanks, what ever for?

- By Anthony Buccino
From AMERICAN BOY: Pushing Sixty

On Kindle

The poem was first published in RATTLESNAKE REVIEW 12/2007

Copyright © 2007, 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

Photo from Ripley's Believe It Or Not Museum, NYC, by Anthony Buccino
******************

November 22, 2010

ADVICE



Now, Sam, did you really think
That you could step out of mediocrity
And step into the love of your life?

You didn’t think you could do it
Without having lost once or twice
And you can’t keep love alive without
Working and struggling at it.

If you thought it was so simple
Now, you know it’s not
And the loss of your most sacred lover
Will pass as others come before you.

Remember now as you encounter lovers
It’s not just a ‘give-me’ gig

If you don’t want it to work
Don’t bother to look, but if you want
To succeed, keep looking, keep working.

When love is right for you, you’ll know
The feeling – though you’ve only felt it
Once before.

If love starts to walk away
Go after it, man, follow it,
Don't let it get away.

- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

Photo, The Kiss 2, by Anthony Buccino, taken at the Hyatt in Jersey City, NJ. These two youngsters were at it for quite a while ... as the next shot in the series will show later this week. 

Alternate ending:

If love starts to walk away
Follow it to the end of the earth
Where new love is old love renewed.


******************

November 21, 2010

PIPELINE CREEK

Belleville, N.J.

We played our games and looked under rocks
Alongside the creek where the water bubbled up
Through a sandy swirl of a drainage ditch
On the low side of the underground water pipeline
Where it crosses under buzzing power lines overhead
On the hottest days of our Jersey season of steam
We always found water flowing, always enough
To soak our summer sneakers and run through a while
With squishing feet through the paths we trod.

We filled our plastic Army canteens
with fresh sparkling water In that hidden rut
of the overgrown field when we played war
and flopped dead in tall grasses.
We doused our temples and wrists with the cool water
We were sure flowed from secret streams
In Iceland to our dead-end field in northern Jersey.

No fish ever swirled in our little creek.
Maybe a turtle or frog showed up
but I don’t remember that detail any more.
The creek was still bubbling the purest water
when I moved away in 1964
but the last time I stopped by the open field of my youth,
the place where the spring had sprung was dry as could be
in the passing years the grown-ups came along
and fixed the pipeline leak.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.
A Belleville poem
******************
See also Greetings From Belleville, New Jersey

November 20, 2010

ON MY SHOES

Pompeii, Italy

Horses pulled carts down these ancient streets
Rocks and trenches, uncovered now
After centuries of mystical curses
There you see the woodless rooms
On these dusty roadways so old
It rained a torrent in the streets of Pompeii
Here, in the middle of narrow streets
You see stepping stones to cross in floods
And troughs centuries old that wagons rode
Yet the brothel mosaics are almost fresh
After ages of heat and dust on this old mountainside
Long gone is the rumored second floor.
Once this was a kitchen, that a bedroom.
These shelled out, roofless rock caves
Where glassless windows grasped the slightest breeze.
This was Pompeii, in Campania, Italy,
The rich sea brought sailors and good times and riches
Until everything perished under stinging soot.
Under the recreated mummified remains
The dusty brown hound sleeps and dreams of what?
Does he see the ghosts of this terrible nightmare?
Or does he dream doggy dreams of strangers with food?
Hours later we entered Roma weary from our travels
Walk past foreign graffiti into the high class hotel
On my black shoes, the dust of Pompeii

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

******************
Sometimes I Swear In Italian by Anthony Buccino
in print and on Kindle

November 19, 2010

TWO PAYCHECKS

Once, you laughed at her rag picker's frumpy clothes,
and her stringy, dirty hair,
but now, you see,
you're just two paychecks away.

I never thought you would be so snooty
like you have forgotten where it is you started
your clothes were always clean.
your hair washed and brushed
and a roof always overhead.

But now, you see, you're just like her and me,
just two paychecks away from a cardboard box.

- By Anthony Buccino
From CANNED - Booted, bumped, down-sized, fired, forced out, hated, hired, jobless, laid off, let go, out of work, out-sourced, pink-slipped, terminated, sacked, unemployed

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.


******************

November 18, 2010

TRAVELS

TRAVELS

I want to go somewhere where I can see
without my glasses the faces of strangers
the lines in their faces the wrinkles on their trousers
the pleats in their skirts

I want to go somewhere where the headlights
don’t blind me till I cry the ground lights
don’t sneak up from my shoes
or the flood lights flood over me with light

I want to go some where
Where I can see in the dark

- By Anthony Buccino
From ONE MORNING IN JERSEY CITY

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

******************

November 17, 2010

HAND CAR

HANDCAR

I always wanted to drive one of those
special trucks that also ride on
railroad tracks.
You don’t have to steer much, accelerate and brake is all.
I guess they use them for maintenance work.
They ride the tracks on those metal wheels that real trains have.

I’ve even thought of operating one of those
see-saw cars where you pump the handle
and it goes on the railroad tracks.
You used to see them a lot in old movies,
mostly Westerns, the see-saw carts, I mean.
I guess they come in handy
in mines and Indiana Jones
movies, not to mention
Blazing Saddles when
you’re building a railroad.

Who knew before this poem
there are societies for the
preservation of the handcar,
pump car, jigger, Kalamazoo?
Or that the cart in my pipedream
had a name or two.
We can all thank the mighty
Internet for bringing
pieces of history and fact
into my daydream.

- By Anthony Buccino
From VOICES ON THE BUS

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

First published in Medusa's Kitchen

November 16, 2010

YOUR BIRTHDAY

YOUR BIRTHDAY
Jersey City, NJ

In honor of your birthday
I fed the pigeons on the pier.
A few showed up, then a few more.

Seagulls arrive to watch from a distance
Squawk for their friends to join the scrim
For pieces of bread I've cast off for them
Into the Hudson River shallows

But mostly today,
in honor of your birthday
I fed the pigeons
on the pier.

- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER

For my dad, the proud pigeon flyer.
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.

November 15, 2010

WORKING FATHER

He's so old and worn,
been through a lot since he was born
Works hard everyday
to put food in our mouths
so we don't have to pay
Tries to love us but can't,
begins to show us,
he's proud, but can't
Been in a war,fighting and sick,
he's lived through four
He coughs and gags
from years of choking his smokes,
we pretend not to hear,
His shirt is dull and torn,
from nails and rails,
and he's old and worn

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.

November 13, 2010

VALIUM BREEZE

VALIUM BREEZE

On a breezy day in the northwest corner
of our town you could smell
the vitamins cooking across the road.
Nowadays you see the modern buildings,
sky high and full of workers.

But a hundred years ago
in that very same clearing, the circus
settled in and dear Miss Annie Oakley
came to town by train and practiced
shooting in the pre-Valium breeze.
And they named a nearby street after her

Not too long ago, though,
we didn’t need the Valley of the Dolls
all we had to do was breathe
and we’d either get our
recommended daily supply
of 12 wonder vitamins
or a buzz so loud
we’d duck the invisible bees.

But nowadays, kid, it’s all changed.
The baffles clean the air before
it leaves the chimney
and the smokestack, they say,
is so clean you could eat off it.

- By Anthony Buccino
From YOUNTAKAH COUNTRY A Poetic View Of Nutley Old And New

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.
******************

November 12, 2010

INDIAN TRADERS

INDIAN TRADERS

Just a few hundred years ago
in the thick green undergrowth
where the Yanticaw Creek
meets the wide old Passaic River
the fish surrendered by jumping
into hollowed dugout canoes.

From the banks of Delawanna
to the overhang at Brookdale Park
wampum changed hands
in peace and prosperity for generations.


The people, the True People, Lenni Lenape,
celebrated the yantacaw,
a thanksgiving feast – long before
the other people called Pilgrims
celebrated – a bountiful feast
with like people from up north
who brought exotic furs and canoes
and traded with southern natives
for salt fish and seashells.

- By Anthony Buccino
From YOUNTAKAH COUNTRY A Poetic View Of Nutley Old And New
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.
******************

November 11, 2010

OLD MAN

OLD MAN

How patient you were as you watched me play with my plastic men on the carpet strewn
with dead soldiers, scattered toy guns and tanks.
The explosion noises I made with my child’s mouth were some ironic twist to your fate.
For here you were, spending your lifetime to forget what your son innocently brings up again in your face.
After all this time I realize I spent my time trying to be you.
And you, you spent your time trying to forget what you’d been through.
I’m sorry if I ever hurt you, Dad,you know it wasn’t like that.
I was just a blond-haired kid doing what little boys do.

- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Old Man first published in Raving Dove Online Literary Magazine
******************

November 10, 2010

BAD BOYS

BAD BOYS

We had tough guys in my neighborhood.
They were always angling for a fight.
They were the first guys in the trouble du jour.
When we got caught the cops gave us a rap
Then when we got home Pop whooped us good.
But with some tough guys it never sank in.
They tried the next worse thing and then the next, too.
After so much trouble they got to go in the Army
and fight in the jungle.
Maybe they'd get it out of their system. Or not.

- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
From AMERICAN BOY: Pushing Sixty

November 9, 2010

WHAT PA DIDN’T SAY

WHAT PA DIDN’T SAY


Dad was never much of a talker a few words here and there

a short story in an economy of words about the adventures of one of his homers
Dad was never much of a writer 

He never left a note to say he was running out for breakfast
or would be back in a little while so it was a great surprise for all
when some of his Guadalcanal letters appeared more than twenty years
after he passed away we met my father as a young man we never knew

His long forgotten letters to his buddy back home showed a man who misses his family and the long years he was overseas as censors cut out little holes the Japs would never see

He wrote of something he saw but will never forget and never said what it was
but it was what silenced him for all those years we knew him.


- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTERCopyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.


November 8, 2010

WAR MOVIES

WAR MOVIES

The louder the better it always seemed. No matter.
He always fell asleep before John Wayne won the war
or the sad dog whimpered at the cavalryman’s fate.


Who knew what he knew?
He never said anything except to mention malaria
and those old photos we found of native women in grass skirts.
But that was such a small part of the things he carried inside.


It wasn’t jolly, or fun.
It wasn’t something you could say.
The best you could do was build something new.
And when you’ve exhausted your body as much as your soul
turn on an old war movie and sleep through this TV play
as you dream of the past war and remember noises
no orchestra could drown.

- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.
******************

November 7, 2010

OVERALLS

OVERALLS

People laugh at the Li’l Abner look where the tops of my shitkickers
have a large gap to the bottom of my pin-striped bib overalls.
Don’t the stripes make me look taller?
It’s not the effect you see in these overalls.
I wear them because they are functional,
made of tough material, and have lots of pockets
and a twisted loop for my 16-oz. Stanley hammer.

Your pockets can get full of Sheetrock bits
and you won’t get into any kind of laundry trouble.
I’ve worn through a lot of solid blue bib overalls, myself.
Dad used to get me them at a great price at a little store
called Walenski’s on Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair.
Maybe that’s where he got this pair?
This pair of white overalls has blue vertical stripes.
I had two pairs like this once, but one plumb wore out.
These bibs fit Dad to a T you can bet.
His legs were shorter than mine,
and his belly, well, that’s another story.
I don’t want another pair for Christmas or my birthday.
This pair I save for special working occasions
like heavy yard work, or painting something.
I’m trying to make these engineer overalls last forever


- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER
Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
******************

November 6, 2010

AFTERMATH

Don't come to me when you're not feeling well
Don't come to me or make me tell
You how I wish I could heal every bone
you call your own
And don't ask me to cleanse your soul
After this, only time can make you whole

You're leaving here And you're going
To meet your husband Who gave you your child
And all the while That I held your hand
You still wore his golden band
Your leaving now is the end
But I'll always say you were my friend
Pack your bags and get
Leave here before your cheeks get wet
Leave your brother here before I don't let
You pack your bags and get

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
On going back to Ashtabula


November 5, 2010

PUNCH LINE

PUNCH LINE

She thinks she's dyin
But I know she won't
I'm asking why'n
She's sayin don't

I don't wanna have a baby, mama,
I don't wanna die
I don't wanna be a mother, mama,
I don't wanna cry
I don't wanna be a wife, mama,
I don't wanna lie
I don't wanna have a baby, mama,
I don't wanna die

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
On her miscarriage.
******************

November 4, 2010

POEM FOR CHILDHOOD

POEM FOR CHILDHOOD
For Dennis

Never a boot in the ass from these shoes
Nor a stomp on an instep to wield a crippling ballyhoo
No kicks to the groins or knuckles to the jaw
Just a slowly moving mind recording what it saw

He was a youngster like me
In the days before we had to worry
About loading real bullets into real guns
And we never had any carnage to bury

Skinny with a long bony face
His mind’s speed about he same as mine
We shared our youth and school uniforms
Where we met and fooled killin’ nothing but time

The last I remember of our days of play
We went home after school one afternoon
He asked his ma where the dog had gone
Without no warning she took a gun to it – kabloom!

Denny started bawlin’ and didn’t want to play
Any kinds of games with me after that
Blamed me, and I felt a strange sadness
I walked home quickly with my eyes behind my hat

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
(Actually, his mother got rid of the dog 
while the kids were at school, but she didn't kill it.)
******************

November 3, 2010

TURPS

TURPS

When girls say turps for turpentine
It rubs me the wrong way.
I’m jealous they had it better
With their fathers than I did with mine.
Their fathers shared the lingo
Turps for turpentine.
Shortcuts for washing
A soaked paint brush.
Girls who learned to hammer
And built things with their dads
And climbed ladders to rooftops
And snapped the blue plumb line for dad
It rubs me the wrong way.
They did boy things with dad
And dad passed along how tos.
And forever their little girls
Spend a lifetime now saying
Turps for turpentine.

- By Anthony Buccino
from SIXTEEN INCHES ON CENTER

Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Turps first published in The Idiom
******************

November 2, 2010

TO MARIE

There you are, smiling, your jackhammer arms resting across the barrel of your cannon.
The chalk mark names the woman you love to “Marie Lovely” from the jungle on Guadalcanal.

You decided to wait til you got back to marry
the skinny girl you met at the roller rink.
Some of the guys you’re serving with didn’t.
You’re sure, right now, you made the right choice.

To "Marie”, her name in chalk
on the barrel of a killing machine.
What would she say
when she sees this picture?

Is she glad you’re thinking of her, that you’ll kill the  enemy in her name?
Or will she be so happy to have you home again this photo will not matter?

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

RIP, Marie.
Twenty years, and it still seems like yesterday.
There's so much to tell you, I know you are still listening.
******************

November 1, 2010

AND A BOHEMIAN HAT

AND A BOHEMIAN HAT

If I really wanted
to be a poet
I’d have gotten out
new sunglasses
And a Bohemian hat
I’ve already got
the mumbling down pat
And some old clothes
in a trunk for the street-wise

Oh what a poet
I’d have made
With just a little education
and a louder mouth
I could put
them all to shame
If I knew
what I was doing
I would-a done it
when I came

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
******************

October 31, 2010

COMING ALONG

COMING ALONG

You know and I know
There’s something better I can do
Something better than sitting in
The Town Pub to get close to drunk
Something better than working
Like a boss telling myself
I’ll be leaving soon.

Something better than lying to myself
Is maybe you lying to me
Something better always comes along
And you keep telling me so

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 30, 2010

ONE MORE WEEK

Young men today can be seen
Retiring in twenty years
Enduring the platitudes
And men with sparing educations

The chances the young men missed
The archives of men in motion
Cursing inanimate objects
That can neither feel nor give pain

The young man, a bachelor today
Three kids tomorrow, a mortgage
And hungry growing mouths to feed
“It’ll be great to retire someday.”

Never planning to stay long
Every day for the past twenty years
Muttering incoherently for the strength
To make it through one more week.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.

October 29, 2010

EARLY FRIDAY NIGHT REFLECTIONS

EARLY FRIDAY NIGHT REFLECTIONS

Don’t know what’s gotten into me
It looks like another strike
And half of me is on the picket line

We’re pulling down and building up
But it seems to all the passers-by
That what we do, it just don’t help

Hurts like sand in a boot makes toes cry
Then it occurred to me in the heat of an iron
Hold on close to your dreams whatever they seem

Just keep trucking along like everyone else
Fall into the scheme of times screwed up
Counter-clockwise on Friday night.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 28, 2010

COLUMBIA

COLUMBIA

Against the wall there are pallets
Of coffee grown in Columbia
Roasted in Hoboken, Calumet or Jacksonville
Inside the wall are many men
And women who have come to work
If for no other reason than it is here
Outside the wall there is the sun
That gives life to the grass
To the trees and children who drink it in
Against the wall are grounds
Of coffee from Columbia handled
By people who work in darkness
And feel so old.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.

******************

October 27, 2010

FIVE DOLLARS AN HOUR

FIVE DOLLARS AN HOUR

A pain in the ass
A wise crack that insults
Vague morality and false superstition
They never notice a mind
That is wasted inside
These four walls and pallets of coffee
They just see a young man
Stupid, with a strong back
Incapable of fighting or loving
Just another fool in here
Who sacrificed freedom
For the almighty dollar
And five dollars an hour

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 26, 2010

VACATION

VACATION

We always need a vacation
After a day’s vacation, or a week’s.
It’s always the same
There’s always too much work
And not enough men to do it.
(Actually, it’s the other way around
But we’re sworn to secrecy.)
We’re so very tired of working so hard
Hardly enough work for the workers,
Er, I mean workers for the work.
And we’re always in need of a break
Or a year-long vacation.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 25, 2010

PEER GROUP

Those working men
They vulgarize you,
They take your sweet dreams
And stuff them up your ass
Then turn you around
And tear down your class

Those working men
All vulgarize you
They castigate you
For trying to pass
They laugh at you
When you fail

Those working men
Scratch at your hope
They lost theirs
So very long ago

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.

October 24, 2010

THE CARPENTER AND THE PRETTY GIRL

THE CARPENTER
AND THE PRETTY GIRL

Newark in those days was the place to be
Everyone from everywhere went there
the subway lines crisscrossed the streets
and the kids of all ages met at Branch Brook Park.

The Olmstead park, like its big sister in New York
was wrought from rolling raw farmland in the city
and shaped into ponds and rolling fields
to please the crowds

At the big park in winter, ice skaters ruled
but the rest of the year roller skaters rumbled
That’s where my parents met some how older than the rest
the handsome carpenter who looked like Tyrone Power
and the skinny gal with the pretty round face
who looked like Julie Roberts,
but first, in those pre-war years

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved. Photos and content may not be used for commercial purposes without written permission.

Married 10.24.1945 til death do us part.
******************

October 23, 2010

THE INSANE POET

THE INSANE POET

The insane poet
Was not insane when he came
Only after years of tortures
His brain abused
His creativity stifled
And worse yet, being laughed at

The temper that is his poetry
Grew in fires of frustration
The body grew fit yet run down by
The constant crushing pressures
Whirling in his mind
The worst kind of interest

The insane poet
Is locked in a coffee warehouse
As trapped as any working class hero
Worrying about bills, waiting to be paid
The insane poet
Writes poems to people he never sees,
Wondering if they’d ask him to sing
(no one has ever asked him to sing,
Only to please stop that singing.)

The insane poet
Would love people to ask him to sing
People who beg and claw to shake
The insane poet’s hand and arm
When they demand to see him
Demand for him to sing
The insane poet
Asks them where they were
When he was locked in a coffee warehouse
Why didn’t they hear him
Screaming to be let out?

The insane poet
Was there, locked in a coffee warehouse
He hollered until he cried, until the pallets
Stacked for rows and rows to the roof, rattled
The insane poet
Screamed until he could speak no more
He whined until his throat dried up

The insane poet
Had no one locked in the coffee warehouse
Who could understand his driving needs
His gut and heartfelt cringing emotions
The insane poet
Slumped against the wall, locked in a coffee warehouse
With no lights or noise or anyone to talk to

The insane poet
Grew insane slowly, a little bit each day
Not so you’d notice, and not until it was too late
The insane poet
Was told by someone with no hair, “You’re crazy,
You’re crazy! Just like everyone else here
Locked in this old smelly coffee warehouse.”

The insane poet
Was the only one among them who could call himself a poet
Yet all the others locked in the coffee warehouse
Just laughed and stared and said, “I can write better than that garbage.”
The insane poet
Blew a hole one day through the back wall of the coffee warehouse
He was locked in for so many years, like a silent prison sentence
And no one’s ever seen the insane poet again.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 22, 2010

THE HAIRCUT

I almost hate to take off my hat
After I’ve had my haircut
The guys on the job always ask
“Who cut your hair?”
And before I begin to tell them
They answer themselves
“Attilla the Hun – with a lawn mower
After he got his eyes poked out!”
Saving me the agony and trouble
Of removing my hat again

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 21, 2010

DOG’S DAY

DOG’S DAY

Middle class dreams
Lackluster love
Tell you what I mean
By freeing a dove
Big shots in big cars
Limousines
Who needs ‘em,
Who feeds ‘em,
Who knows?
Rush, rush, scurry about
Big men worry and pout
Dig it? Dig it? Get it, yet?
Of course you do! You bet!
People tell you what to do
Who needs ‘em?
No one spends his money on you
Who leads ‘em?
Wait. Wait your turn
Live and learn
One day, maybe, you’ll
Get your chance
To stand with the whip
And make them dance.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 20, 2010

JEALOUSY

JEALOUSY

It’s only their jealousy
Of your youth
You with your life ahead of you.
Their jealousy tells them to destroy.
Your pride says to fight
However you can
And for as long

Be prepared for the worst
Brace yourself
Against the pain
When they aim their fangs
At your neck
But end up biting
Between your legs

There’s no one on your side
Except your youth
Which they hate you for
In the first place

It’s only their jealousy
Of your youth
They all like to see you
Squirm, wriggle
And quiver like a worm
You won’t lower yourself to be

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.

The Old Guys Hated Me These poems were written about the same times but 30 years apart.
******************

October 19, 2010

LABOR’S LAMENT #7

LABOR’S LAMENT #7

I got to work today
With the same dirt
‘neath my nails
That was there
Yesterday when I left
There’s no one to blame or care
‘cept the fellow with my name
And he doesn’t dare

The nicotine stains are heavy
Growing darker and deeper each day;
Ain’t no bleach can take them out
There’s no one to blame or care
‘cept the fellow with my name
And he doesn’t dare

My teeth are yellow and broken
Ain’t no time in the morning to brush
Ain’t no time at all to wash
There’s no one to blame or care
‘cept the fellow with my name
And he doesn’t dare

My back is humped over
My mind is totally warped in confusion
I was so innocent on my first day
There’s no one to blame or care
Who went or who came
No one, any where.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 18, 2010

WILD THINGS

WILD THINGS

Don’t hurt the wild things
we know how much you hurt inside
and don’t be cruel to your pets
we know how bitterness
eats you inside
look around you, pal
everything sucks
and the best thing
about being down so far
is the only place you got
to go from here is up
you got the world by the balls
it’s something you forgot
on your way down

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
******************

October 17, 2010

TWO MORE NEW JERSEYANS KILLED IN IRAQ WAR

TWO MORE NEW JERSEYANS KILLED IN IRAQ WAR
6.27.08

No one wants to read about the war anymore,
they want it done, over with. Bring our soldiers home.
No one wants to read about reporters embedded with the troops
and what it’s like in the desert. Bring our soldiers home.

No one wants to read about suicide bombers who kill
their own people and ours. Bring our soldiers home.

No one wants to read about the gi-normous debt of war
we’ll be paying for decades hence. Bring our soldiers home.

No one wants to read about the bone and bruises
from a useless war. Bring our soldiers home.

No one wants to read about yellow ribbons, posthumous awards,
night vision glasses, smart bombs spy drones, men in caves
sandy crotches, roadside devices orphan dogs, orphans missing limbs
the perils of war man’s in humanity to man.
Bring our soldiers home.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.

Title: Headline in Star-Ledger

Honor the Fallen

Faces of the Fallen
******************

October 16, 2010

DO THIS, DON’T DO THAT

DO THIS, DON’T DO THAT

People are always trying to change me
Exchange me and rearrange me
That’s not their place, it’s my face
They try to make me think like them
Drink like them and stink like them
I’m a me, I’m not a you
They try to make me write like them
Fight like them and be contrite like them
I like me the way I am

People try to make me sleep like them
Creep like them and peep like them
I’m not like all the rest

They try to make me rest like them
Detest like them and arrest like them
But it’s so hard for me to hate

They try to make me dress like them
Address like them and redress like them
They don’t know I’m a me from days gone by

People try to change me like I’m a doormat
Needless to say I’ve never gone along with that
‘n needless to say they just keep coming.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 15, 2010

MARCHES ON

MARCHES ON

What a drag it is in here
Boredom marches on
Like the moans of the weary

I don’t remember anything
I did a week ago
And I don’t really want to

There’s too much rain
Not enough sun
Not enough fun

It’s such a drag in here
Boredom marches on
Like the moans of the weary

I’m weary and wary
Fed up with your
Work a day and your charms

Tired of your yeses
And your no’s
I moan like the weary.

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************

October 14, 2010

FROM A WAREHOUSE

FROM A WAREHOUSE

I’m too sensitive to be locked
Into the every day drone
Of a coffee warehouse

I should be secluded
On a mountain
With a cabin and a pen

I’d write on the walls
Or not at all
But it’s fair to say

I’m too sensitive to be locked
Into the every day drone
Of a coffee warehouse

-- Copyright © 2010 by Anthony Buccino, all rights reserved.
Adapted from long-lost FROM A WAREHOUSE chapbook.
******************