Monday, June 20, 2022

Aeolian Harp

Mystical music of Internet’s breath,
As driven before the fire of despair,
Self-styled harbinger of imminent death
And judge of opinions everywhere;
Swift master of joy in meter and prose,
Does a mortal hand your ├ętude design?
The dark harmonies your Muses compose,
Hint at a purpose not fully benign.
Sometimes, my soul seeks to dance to your song.
Sometimes, your dirge drips both venom and vice.
Is there a symphony of right and wrong,
Composed by humans, both naughty and nice?
Is the swift passing breath of countless posts,
An eerie wind harp played by trolls and ghosts?

Mick McKellar
June 2022

Often, when I am surfing the waters of social media -- near shore to facilitate a quick exit should that be necessary -- I sense a strange music permeating the prose or drifting among the bits and pieces of what passes for prose these days. Captivated by the music, I wonder if there is a purpose or a mind behind its eerie presence, or if it is a wind harp tuned to the passing of gas on the Internet.


Tuesday, April 05, 2022

The Dogfight

One sparklin' Saturday, soft and sighing,
I decided that I would go flying.
So, I launched my Spitfire into the air;
My soul was aloft, without a care.

I saw my girlfriend and her brother, Heinz,
And their matched pair of BF 109s,
Both climbing rapidly, ever higher,
To fly with my solitary Spitfire.

Patty and I often flew together,
Spitfire and Messerschmidt in good weather.
Though Heinz often said he didn't like me,
I didn't think an attack was likely.

Then Heinz pushed his 109 really hard,
Missed clipping my left wing by half a yard,
Then rolled away quick as any I've seen,
To come again at my Supermarine.

I rolled my craft and I dropped for the deck,
Heinz dove and followed, thus courting a wreck,
For Spitfire's famous elliptical wing,
So much like a bird -- it could almost sing.

I broke from my dive mere feet from the ground,
The crash of his plane made an awful sound.
I heard Patty's plane diving from above,
And her scream of vengeance didn't say "love."

Her plane nearly hit me, such was her ire,
So I pushed my small craft ever higher.
As expected, her 109 followed;
The bait was taken, the worm was swallowed.

My Spitfire dropped in a full-power dive,
Her Messerschmidt came, fast as it could strive.
The Spitfire looped, an accomplished fact,
Done before the 109 could react.

My Spitfire's landing gear punched both her wings,
And she couldn't hope to dislodge those things.
So she had to land her disabled dray,
With mine riding it like a bird of prey.

As my model I silently retrieved,
I walked away saddened, and yet relieved.
Heinz yelled at Patty, and she her brother,
In the future, they could fight each other...

Mick McKellar
April 2022

I have no clue why I was dreaming about model airplanes, the Battle of Britain, and faithless girlfriends, but this crazy poem formed in my sleep. I only had to write it out and edit. What fun!


Monday, March 14, 2022


Rage and grief are second cousins
Once removed perhaps,
But relatives in blood and bone.

History, though written on the page
By conquerors and politicians,
Is savagely grafted upon the bones
Of survivors,
And burned upon the minds
Of blood witnesses,
And upon the souls of children.

Childhood ripped from the innocent,
Festers and grows
Among the weeds of savage gardens.
Bright memories of freedoms stolen,
Tarnish and darken.
The patina of acrimony,
And the verdigris of vengeance
Wait, in silence, clenched among the shadows...

Beneath your bed, Putin.

Mick McKellar
March 2022

Cultural memory can be a long-suffering and potent enemy. Putin's progress may produce his doom. He thinks he can rewrite history, but doesn't credit everywhere it will be written.


The Song of Another Monday

Gray Monday, scion of the week,
Wintry cold and tolerant
Of whispered plans and planned technique;
Please rescue me with wonderment.

Cold font of possibilities,
And frigid cornucopia,
I cried last week, upon my knees,
For rescue from dystopia.

I sing the song of chill Monday,
And as the dread weight I eschew,
Stretch forth my hand to grasp the day,
And gladly reach to start anew!

Mick McKellar
March 2022

I never understood the dread with which so many approach Mondays. It's a chance to begin again, to start a new week and discharge the detritus of the week before.


Tuesday, March 01, 2022

Putin Him Away

Vladimir, like Cheshire cat,
Lies smirking on his limb;
Sucking marrow, grease, and fat,
From bones of children killed for him.

His tiny orbs, his lizard eyes,
Grow darker with each bite.
He relishes their plaintive cries,
And loves it when they fight.

He thinks that he is Khan reborn,
To conquer and enslave
A peaceful people tattered, torn,
With one foot in the grave.

One hopes the world will understand,
The nature of his sin,
And lead him by his slimy hand
To jail, and lock him in.

Mick McKellar
March 2022

This came to me in the middle of the night and woke me up. It appears my nightmares are in Russian these days.


Tuesday, February 22, 2022

If I cried, would the angels hear?

I put on each new morning,
Like a clean shirt:
Crisp and fresh from the drawer,
Creased, yet not wrinkled.

I pull it over my head, and for a second,
It's summer and I am camping;
Waking in our golden tent,
Smelling canvas warming in the early sun.
Hungry for my breakfast of pancakes and sand.

As my head erupts from the collar,
My magic mirror catches my eye,
And laughs.
It shows an old, gray geek in a worn t-shirt,
The word "Survivor" shouting from its face.
Hair tangled as a tumbleweed.
Fingers too stiff for buttons, waving about
For balance, seeking comfort from a bookcase.

I pause as my memories and my years
Catch up with me.
I sit on my bed.
I cough, shake my head,
And wonder:
If I cried, would the angels hear?

Mick McKellar
February 2022

It is both curse and joy to remember how it felt to be young, and to relive those feelings and sensations, only to rediscover the wear and tear caused by the sands of time.


Friday, February 18, 2022

Wrestling with Ghosts

Dim shadows of twilight,
Hide gay revelry:
A spirited frolic,
And tonic for me.

A quixotic ballroom,
Awash with starlight,
Twinkles and beckons
Across the dark night.

A fountain of music,
And a geyser of song,
Enrapture my spirit
To sing loudly along.

I tumble and tussle
With spirits and souls,
And share a timestep
With a saint, with goals...

 I wake with the sunrise,
Fatigued and dismayed,
And thinking that maybe
I shouldn't have stayed --

So long at the party,
With my unseen hosts;
Tap dancing with angels,
And wrestling with ghosts.

Mick McKellar
February 2022

Ever notice that your dream self can do a whole lot more than your awake self?