Posts tagged ‘WI’

August 7, 2014

downtown La Crosse, circa 2006.

Buying the Tribune
in the morning
in downtown La Crosse,
velvet touch-

A Coffee,
walk the redbrick sidewalk.

Past the Bodega,
and Chairs,
and last night’s Cigarette Butts,

washing dishes in the back of some restaurant.

Faux-Progressive airs;
Talking a lot, stale-
actions and words; NOTICE: they talk a lot.

Burnt-Out Transcendentalists,
watching drunks, and pre-cancer patients and cars being parked—

Save the day.

Wearing shorts under blue skies.

Call clandestine spies, looking up at the corner apartment window-
wondering what’s inside__
… As she wakes,

long legs lie.

Moving, thinking, that fresh brewery smell, now new adult.

In summer heat- beating down,
The Mississippi River on the breeze—cesspool,

I walked back from where I had come
trying to not feel so numb.

Because I had to walk back.

June 17, 2014

Lock and Dam No. 7

On a boat close an expansive dam
A boy accompanied an Old Man
Fishing for hours cold hands
Only to have come up few clams

The river remained rough
Water spray wet brown splash
Bubbles in the water swirling
Bottom of boat held beer cans

Farther up the boy could see birds
Up close to the tumblers brightly red
Over white-caps exchanged few words
The Old Man palmed his rod in hand

Lock and Dam 7 lent no pension
Yet many prospered in its wake
The Old Man and the boy lay patient
They trolled up and down, but had to wait

Ice coated concrete walls
With rope or hook they fastened tight
Daylight lasted only so long in afternoons
The highway lights suggested night

Untying they came undone
River smell and worms in hand
The fish on the stringer were meager
Pushing off they went towards land

They passed others by and by
Anglers that were mastered
Coming closer to the landing point
Lights on avoiding disaster

Trailing wake in full gait
An out-board went ‘bout 20 knots
Blackness and bugs flew by about them
As they came closer to the docks

Lamplight held empty parking lot
Shown just below the river’s edge
The flat-bottom came parallel the wooden structure
The boy managed at his sea legs

With a hard bump from running in fast
A rope was fastened—quick, and down
The boat made way with the water
The boy made feet with wooden ground

Cold rushed from the river valley out
Nothing held the boy more in life
Than to be out near the Mighty Mississippi
In the dwindling hours of night

As children we are exposed to habits which prove a tradition
As adults we revisit those events to see what lessons were given.

April 15, 2014

“The Apple Capital”

This town
Under bluffs of a river valley

Ancient trees
Fixed in rich dirt of sediment

Through the
Sandstone foundation of long forgotten
Specters under the sky
Incarnation of this “American Dream”

Their progeny haunt
Stalk
Past the dying brilliance
Of traditional affairs

–The audacity of Business
Gathering
From the land
Of which they do not own
–the view
That warns
The conscious being

A vast distance between states
Two, as splendid
Establishment in the new frontier
Dust to flesh

Once whited maps
Growing with pride
Now what it stood for is merely a novelty

February 26, 2014

Falling Through Ice (Estes Park, CO)

“Stupidity is a comical art.”

-Anonymous 

 

There was a mountain high,

Of which I climbed the side,

 

There was a lake deep below,

Of which I fell inside,

 

There was a parking lot where I stood, naked for all eyes,

Of which travelers laughed as they drove by- what a sight.

 

November 30, 2013

Travelers of the Hometown

With a moderate hangover we wake to unfiltered light.

A sign of the debauchery transpired last night.

 

Weather view tempts those to wander outside.

If they take time and mind to leave confines.

 

Travel,

Family,

And the Local Paper -

 

We barter borrowing the car to visit familiar strangers.

 

Beer,

Coffee,

Bowling,

And a Walk in the Books-

 

Finding matters of interest-vague yet specific,

Travelers of the Hometown, try? …

 

We didn’t even have to look.

November 19, 2013

Weekends in Bush Valley

Always flannel, mouthing big cigars, and coffee,

In the cold, smoke would rise from a few.

 

Sawdust and dirty dogs,

Not insulting, just talking, they were barking,

There was cussing at ideas, and the sky blue.

 

No need to ask why, things just happened.

 

An old Ford pickup,

We were loading the flatbed back.

 

Playing in dirt, waiting on something, or someone to make tracks-

What had occurred?

Occupied with running around, yet relaxed.

 

-Shooting a rusted BB gun at beer cans and stray cats.

(AND I ACTUALLY DID SHOOT MY EYE OUT.)

 

Hoses and a wood splitter,

An old horse named Drifter.

Hydraulics and the sounding of the oak wood’s crack-working toward a heart-attack.

 

Donuts and words,

We conquered a bit of the forest and this part of rich black earth; a necessity of warmth, and a peace that calms the nerves.

 

No cell.

No net.

No Beatnick hipster belief for the minimally absurd, chasing fame, and admiration of friends.

Just content with technology and life as of just yet,

 

And a few words we had learned:

Play,

Love,

And Respect.

 

In nature we couldn’t forget,

The smell brings back memories directly to the present tense.

 

Landlines and old relatives,

Hardened and happy, they prospered simple, and simply prospered.

Good life they lived.

 

Weekends in the valley as a child,

We were never so satisfied to work so hard.

Small towns remain so rich.

 

Of me it is much more than a part.

October 13, 2013

On a Rock I Set

Wind blows cold
so I reach for my hat.

Blue skies and clouds above;
forthcoming sunset.

On a rock I set.
Beer to forget.

Much on my plate,
But I already ate.
Never take me away from this place.

On a rock I set.
A dried-up flood-plain, refuse and sediment.

I am okay here because no one is near.
Just myself, distant noise, wind, fishermen, birds, clouds, and the sunset.

On a rock I set-

Close to the Mighty Mississippi.

Times like this there is nothing to fret.

Relax.

On a rock I set.

August 28, 2013

Dew Point (Part 2)

Around 80, with the dew point, similar to 100 and lost.

This is only for a few days, and we measure the cost.

 

There remains a great contrast, from shut-in at negative 20, to shut-in and very sunny.

 

All above and everything below have theirs to tow.

 

Weather, a well suited rival, for wherever we are we strive for survival.

We learn as we grow.

 

Some clutch drink, others clutch the Bible.

I am just preparing for the recital.

 

My glass remains sweating on the table, the fan blows hot air in, and I wear a smile.

Now, about the weather today…  Where do I begin?

 

August 14, 2013

Dark Day Roast Coffee

There is a light hue of evening slipping on a warm window frame.

Always know the date.

 

Sometimes I forget my name.

Maybe it’s all on the surface of what’s in my cup.

 

***

More coffee than is necessarily helpful.

And there are words by the mouthful.

 

Watching the cool day beauty,

Wind blows right through me.

 

Advantageously lacking,

Practiced at grabbing,

And then gone.

 

Sing song.

 

Tune in out of cue.

POV.

 

Out to sea, only to see you.

August 11, 2013

End of Work Observation

End of Work Observation,

By Terry Scott Niebeling

 

“When I’m not looking for anything I find everything.”

OTS_

 

***

 

Watched bugs fly; they flashed sparks white under the hot parking-lot lights.

Sitting in the A/C cooled yellowing dim-light dining space.

 

Sippin’ a beer with pork and nettles.

 

Ace in the hole,

No story to tell.

 

No drama foreseen about to unfold.

All is well.

 

Stacked silver on plates to be taken away.

 

Just watching distant wings hit, flutter, flap and sputter, fleeting dust as dark colors crept in.

 

 

 

 

Everyone’s like this and that…  I’m like, man, what the hell?  

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