The Pudding on the Cake


Last night I hosted my annual Holiday Chocolate Open Mic at Matthew’s Chocolates in festive downtown Hillsborough. It was an intimate crowd of poets and an appreciative audience sharing wine and chocolate on a chilling evening. So, in that spirit, here’s my latest chocolate poem.

The Pudding On The Cake

The nuance of your fingers
wandering through my hair
is the pudding on the cake
of your kisses to my lips.

Yes, pudding.

I misheard the idiom as a boy
but I stand by the image,
a gentle chocolate pudding,
instead of that boring
melange of sugar and milk,
better describes the sensation
of your fingertips on my cheek
poured over the sexy dark cake
of your tongue in my mouth.

I imagine the avarice in your eyes
while I lick sweet deep cocoa
smeared on your forehead
and you nibble the soft ambrosial
crumbs stuck in my beard.

Oh, my bittersweet muse,
this is going to get messy.

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Lady Hawk on Wolff Poetry

Lady-Hawk-Poem-by-Bartholomew-BarkerOne of my favorite poems is being featured on one of my favorite poetry blogs, Wolff Poetry. Check it out!

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Donating a Pint


Donating a Pint

My blood looks like wine
as it pours from vein to vial,
a fine Pinot Noir
though with better legs.

I’d like a transfusion,
direct from bottle to arm,
bypass my burning stomach,
molten core of misery.

A nice Merlot will lighten
the mix flowing to my brain,
relieving regrets remembered
when I drink too little.

Like the Antichrist, I’m turning
blood into wine, one glass at a time.

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Allegro & Adagio

20181120_202540I just got my copy of Allegro & Adagio, Dance Poems Vol. II. It’s a beautiful book with hundreds of poems about all things dance. If you’re about to begin the annual frenzy of consumption, you should definitely consider this volume.

Not coincidentally, I wrote two poems in the anthology, both from my first book Wednesday Night Regular, Jane Avril at the Moulin Rouge 1893 and Like the Ocean.


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I’m looking for a sturdy girl,
one who can take a punch
to her metaphorical gut
when I require solitude.

One who won’t fall in love
because of a love poem
and won’t fall apart
when she’s not my muse.

One to be the center of my universe
for an evening, to be my toy,
content to sit on a shelf
until I’m ready to play again.

I’m looking for a sturdy girl.
I am the swine and she the pearl.

(From today’s Living Poetry Prompt.)

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Election Day!


If you haven’t voted yet, it’s time to do so. I’ll be heading to my polling place during my lunch break. You can read all about it at Oddball Magazine. They just published Blue Magick. Head over there and cast your social media spells.

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Blue Magick


Blue Magick

I call upon the spirits of light,
the angels of constitutional democracy,
of reasonable policy based upon science,
I humbly beseech you: Arise!

Cast out the demons of fear and corruption.
Break the curse of dark money, lies and hatred.
Free us from willful ignorance so we may cast
our votes as a spell upon our government.

Let us attend the sacred polling place,
dance naked ’round the voting booth,
sing songs of truth and good governance
that we may restore our fair country,

sliding my ballot into the holy box,
the Great Rite of Democracy.

(Have you voted yet?)

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Trickle Down


Trickle Down

My boss’s boss lives a few floors above.
He’s a nice enough guy, we can talk sports
but he’s used to sitting in the skybox
while I’m in the cheap seats.

His boss lives in the penthouse
with an express elevator
to a private multicar garage
but I can tell when he’s home

because there’s a leak in his toilet
he won’t fix since he isn’t bothered
but the mess gets bigger the further it flows,
raining upon the poor and middle class alike.

There’s only one thing trickling down,
dear reader, and it ain’t money.

(Two weeks until Election Day. Vote early, if you can.)

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To My Fellow White Men


To My Fellow White Men

We’re great, that’s undeniable,
we put ourselves on the moon,
kicked Hitler’s Nazi ass
and ran the English out of America.

But all those fine accomplishments
with flags and parades
were achieved by our grandfathers
and their grandfathers before them,
all the way back to Adam.

They built the pedestals
upon which we stand
but that’s not the American Way.
We should be building our own,
not clinging to Daddy.

And pissing on those still working
in the pits we dug for them is just lame.
We’re real men, not victims,
we don’t need to tear down
others to feel taller.

(Three weeks to Election Day!)

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Once Upon a Time


Once Upon A Time

A man could raise a family,
pay off a mortgage
and take a nice vacation
every year on a single salary.

That’s where I was raised,
that quaint country called America.
It wasn’t perfect, just ask the blacks,
homosexuals and secretaries,

but at least the rich paid more in taxes
than the poor and, while politicians
disagreed, we didn’t doubt their motives,
most of the time, only their methods.

But that was before democracy died
and truth was lost in the big money tide.

(Four weeks until Election Day.)


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