Three New Ones, Ten Old Poems, Copyright, Doug Stuber

Here are three new poems, seven from my middle school days, when I knew PR and DM, and then three from the recent past, since I met KDW. First all three new ones, then the ten golden oldies. One pair is a combo-poem in that I wrote “Play” when I was 16 years old, and accidentally borrowed an idea from it 35 years later, hence “Play II” which are grouped together here. A type of historical link for my brain, hopefully also useful for the deconstructionists out there.


Some tennis
coach teamed us up so
the year before, when
she chased me,
and I pulled a chair

down behind me, it was
sixth grade, and she tripped hard on
it, had to
be forgiven if
not forgotten. Priscilla

had grown so
large during the short
intervening June
she became
an instant “hit” with

her male classmates. But
I had the inside track at
Harley, that
is, until Durbin
and I published our newspaper.

Dad was so
impressed he ran off copies,
but the school
didn’t want to know
who was screwing whom,

who smoked pot,
or how angry she got when
I snapped her
bra strap; or how Chris
fingered Kim in class!


The tracks for
our absurd pen-race
car game were drawn in a style
Pollack or
Kandinsky might have

learned from. The winner
I would never get
laid. Right, but it was
a far-reaching bit

of Tarot
guess, as it hit long
after expected, further
away, and with a
life-changing set of

consequences, not
pimples: a
domestic war. You
drew cartoons all day,
then the time I said

the French had
two exes and no Y and
got kicked out
of class, or played “it’s
a buzzard” while

lockers, or being asked to
leave when sir
douche hated my hole
ridden jeans. Strike one!


Gray day turns
to black-out night as
the money ran out long, long
ago. At
least it afforded

Hoon a brief four years
of merriment as
evidenced by his
banner grades, string, nay rope, of
girl conquests.

Oh! The weird
way you got treated
by your own school, a major
still too pure to buy

an election. Pure
spelled poor because the
guaranteed job in
honor of your achievements
was denied on the

theory that
the other guy had bought a lot
of votes for
the eventual
winner. Retreat, sir,

beckons, each spring offering
away from the lies
that rule mainstream life.




and here are the older ones:

Great Expectations

Great expectations – great?

But what when the obvious happens?

A predictable animal grasps you

And throws you to the ground.

Thoughts of how nice it would be if . . .

Then they vanish like a dream when you wake up.

A floating reality teases your mind,

It is there but it may never reach you.






Outreaching leaves of white

Directly over green.

How can it seem trite,

This wonderful nature machine?

Later, as the summer grows

Those greens come into life.

Spreading all the charm they know

While stealing the dogwood’s white.



 Bush “A”

Fluttering slower, quick again,

Green, lush, bush leaves

Small and wavering.

Noisy.  Shades change as

The wind flutters those leaves.

Bush “B”

Light breeze invades,

Bush’s leaves change shades.

Green absorbs CO2

Just for me and you.


The Springs

Let’s go down to the springs,

We can watch the dogwoods grow.

Let’s go down and watch things,

Get up right now, let’s go!

The water will be running,

We certainly won’t miss that.

Today you do look stunning,

Let’s go down and chat.

There’s something I want to tell you

There’s something I want to say:

Now we’re a nation of two

Starting this very day.

So, let’s go down to the springs

We can watch the dogwood grow.

We’ll hear the bird that sings,

There’s one thing that I know.

When we go down to the springs

We’ll see if two can be one.

We’ll avoid the things that sting

And catch a little sun.

The thing that I have found

Is a love for only you.

My heart will always pound

When I enter our nation of two.


For My Friends

A friend is like a constant river flow,

A lover, more like a pond.

A friend is someone whom I know,

Of a lover I am fond.

To be a lover and a friend

Is well worth all the time.

To love someone until the end

Puts the friendship on the line.

To say I love you is very real,

Our friendship I do cherish.

And I hope and truly feel

That it shouldn’t perish.

I love you greater than love,

Love is transitory.

So let me say that being friends

Might end all allegory.


Play (1974, age 15)

Brandy barks at swooping swallows,

Life, lowered to one foot or so

In summer time is simple,

As the lure of tired dogs and clover

Greets only those who need to play.

Scampering down outside stairs

Past the skidding bicycle marks

To a tumbling fit of joy

Goes the only daily memory

Of a happiness once known.

Landing in a pile of limbs,

Which includes the golden hair

That shines of wetness on the

Back of Brandy, the player

Laughs at the summer sun.

How long will it be

Before the play begins again,

Before the youthful joy

Once known appears, before

The love, if ever, returns?

  Play II, Thirty Five Years Later (2009, Age 50)


There’s this shadow made by Korean Pines that hits

the white wall of building two at one every day.

If you’re sitting upstairs at An Die Musik, lazily

waiting for your favorite lunch-mate, this shadow can

appear to be the cliff seen in ancient watercolors.  A

dark cliff and foggy white air in a far-distant place.

Foreground cloud-clipped conifers add a touch of reality,

nudging you back to lunch, which arrives, unlike your partner.

Today it’s the newfound cliff, visible only from three

southeast-facing seats.  Students move, shoes push grains

into jagged cracks, yellow buds enlarge, the sun warms

frosted souls, but it’s the shadow cliff that matters.  Now

you have a new friend, silent but hopeful, strong yet fake,

everlasting but ever-changing, finally receding with the sun

to a place no one knows.  A morose quartet, early romantic,

pops at least one bright piano note, while cello, violin, viola

continue their lament.  A new banner is stretched between

trees.  The perpetrators are efficient and mingle into passersby

in less than thirty seconds.  Now the cliff cascades, trios walk

and talk, you dream of love alone, confident it will return.


One cherry blossom detaches, falls, a single unit
allowing fruit its space, starting its new journey: island
to reflecting pond, orchard to cottage yard, daughter to
lover, enhanced by the wind, if even for only six seconds.
Transformed to long-boned genius, long-yearning adult,
considerate friend, purple-green plaid from soft pink,
tan suede boots from four-petalled bloom. Hikaru, as they
say in Japan, hits the town running, arms crossed, cradling
herself like the war-torn victims of Vietnam, but not
worn or torn, she flings enthusiastic youth toward
outstretched limbs. She captures her beginning and future
simultaneously, shedding one form, embracing another,
sweating humid Spring, still awkward in this skin.
Descending unannounced, she moves among mere mortals
Spreading joy, quietly demanding obedience, offering all
in exchange for all. Most cannot accept, choose an
easier, less complicated path; but those brave strong souls

born from deep roots blessed metamorphosed
beings who join Miss Cherry soon realize, if for one day,
week, or lifetime, their lives will never be the same.



Specks of cherry blossoms remain, six months after, crunched

to microscopic, yet able to detect the soft November feet of

knee-booted beauties. Washington’s engorged monument is

Korean, six inches, but proud, laying-in to boot-skirt on the mall.

Blushing blossoms accept the thumping as better than souls,

more aesthetic than the spiked dens that welcome the kinky

Dupont Circle crowd, you know, congressmen on the town with

their page boys. We’re now “all -in,” bushwhacked into this

winner-take-all culture with few winners, proud sinners, all-meat

dinners. Unshaved Hispanics growl when the dealer hits two

black jacks in a row. Cactus stand, not waving in the wind that

tumbles weeds over mountains, that then ignite to torch homes

of the “richies” who once had it made. Malibu, New Orleans,

Florida in general: is there a pattern here? Gaia, perhaps our

only god, has good aim, giving the haves ample opportunity to

atone: few do. Perpetual human error peaks again now, as

Christians preach morality, their U.S. leader tortures, slaughters,

greedily spilling blood for oil, trading tomorrow for carbon-filled

today, while children and nincompoops watch, jaws agape, because

they didn’t see it coming. By nineteen-eighty-three it was evident,

but still, twenty years into the fall, the one-two combo of religious

propaganda and twisted “news” helped smooth over electoral fraud

in time to put the slow crank on World War Three. Skip forward

to November, back-peddle to the leaf pile, where larger color

combinations lure Alexis and her playmate into unbridled bare-

backed adventures. Cool air slows his sweat, but not before a drop

jumps his nose. She thrusts to lick it out of the air, which is just

the angle adjustment he needs to finish the act. Show this to the

wonks, well-walled on cubicle row sixty-seven, and BASHA! your

job is over. It’s that easy to escape the grind, but near impossible

to be your own cowboy and feed the kids. This is when corporate

can be your friend: just throw out all convictions, trade values

for value-added do-dads that increase profits and productivity

simultaneously and do not stress the details. No one minds if you

are loading atomic weapons, making attack ads, fucking your

“niece,” as long as the leaves rustle gently, lips quiver repeatedly,

and voyeur neighbors get a hot glance, on an Indian Summers’ eve.

2 Responses to “Three New Ones, Ten Old Poems, Copyright, Doug Stuber”
  1. dougstuber says:

    Reblogged this on Dougstuber's Blog and commented:

    Thanks to eyewillnotcry for bringing this one back to the fore.

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