Where the Walnut Trees Were

The house once seemed larger, seen through youthful eyes
The street seems closer, now the trees are gone
Open fields spread to reach the road since
The boom development plan went bust
Leaving the small fruit orchard cleared in its path

We didn’t know if it would still be there
Unexpected there it stood, different, not much the same
A newly abandoned swing set and an odd wire fence
But stayed the concrete pathway
In front of this little house that now lies alone
Straight down the road, where the walnut trees once were

Suddenly, thirty years flash in one moment
And dare to glimpse the memoires of our lives
…of Christmas trees, anniversaries, and late prom night dates
…a place where we sang night after night when daddy played
…and sisters spent hours bouncing new crying babes
It is all hidden in there, in this house that is now gray

Funny, but I wish they’d kept it yellow
I wish the rose garden had stayed
The little yellow house, with a concrete pathway
That sits straight down the road, alone, where the walnut trees once were

Paseo de Diablo

In my rearview there are only two
Vibrating in fumes del fuego
Not the normal crew
Not the swell of the bestias
Yet obediently they follow
Me on my caballo de acero
As if I knew the way
Trusting and entrusting
Whatever I decide
Whichever turn I take
I can hear their tubos
follow close behind
I bank wide right
Sun blind meets my eyes
They follow no questions
Riding deeper into the infierno
I have chosen
A tarantula wasp too has surrendered
Attaching its otherworldly self to leg
Hoping for a way out
I swat it off
It finds a follower
In my rearview I see la conmoción
The swerve, the dust cloud, the braking squeal
The road banks left ahead
In my mirror I see only one

It’s Your Life

Get off the couch
Turn the TV off
There’s someone waiting outside
Do it now
Lace up your shoes
Time to give yourself a try
Step out the door
Do something new
Leave the smart phone behind
You’re not too fat
You’re not too dumb
The real you is who you’ll find
It’s not too cold
It’s not too scary
It’s just an awkward start
You’re not too weak
You’re not too old
Those are lies they tell your heart
It’s your choice
It’s your life
It’s not a spectator sport
Take one step
Win, lose or draw
Life is too big and too short
Watch it spin
Or get right in
The carousel will still go round
It’s up to you
To be yourself
So your best life can be found

(H) owl

I saw at dawn the ancient heavenly connection to the starry night

Who hollow-eyed high sat up in the darkness floating across the tops of cities

who Heaven under the angels illuminated

who passed with radiant eyes and light

who on the windows

who listening through the wall

who in Paradise night after night

with dreams, waking and endless

illuminating all the world of Time between

dawns over the rooftops, sun and moon and dusks of kind light

Make Mine New Orleans


Water ankle deep ‘neath a cracked lightning sky
Umbrella dancing in the Bourbon Street rain
A door man calls from a jazz club warm and dry
Make mine New Orleans

Whether it’s straight up
Or on the rocks with a little water on the side
Make mine New Orleans

You can take the streetcar Uptown
Wander the cemetery after a three Commander lunch
Stay for Mardi Gras, or a skating bull run
Anyway you’ll be back I have a hunch

I got Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Livin’ just ’round the block
Meetin’ them today for a cafe au lait
After my Winn Dixie stop

Whether it’s straight up
Or on the rocks with a little water on the side
Make mine New Orleans

Throw me somethin’ Mista
From a second line parade
I’ll meet you back at the Blacksmith Shop
Where the best hurricanes are made

Where a backyard crawfish boil means
Family, friends and passers by
Laugh together, cry together and raise their glasses high
Make mine New Orleans

Whether it’s straight up
Or on the rocks with a little water on the side
Make mine New Orleans

I like my snowballs with cream
My gators green
My daiquiris from a drive through machine
I like my city with a bathtub ring
Make mine New Orleans

A voodoo spell can send a town
Into a nightmare dream
But if home is where your shrimp boots hang
Make mine New Orleans

Whether it’s straight up
Or on the rocks with a little water on the side
Make mine New Orleans

Sandbar Key

I sit alone on Sandbar Key waiting for the time
A sank by red sun drips against
Reflections of a bad earned sky
Yet stay and lie in wait, do I
Bars yanked. Banks ready.  A snaky bred
Friend that’s me
While drab yaks sing cacophony
And bray naked on the shore
In darken bays of sheer delight
Reflect a darn be sky once more
Bar and keys now bra and keys
Send bay ark couples’ call forth
With Ray-Bans darker dare sneak by
And arks bye-bye the yaks they wave
Ask any bred yak who come aboard
A sad nark’s days be numbered
Don’t darn ask what the bye be for
Or join them as by the end
Stay wait instead on this dry sea bank
Till Sandbar Key yak get drank by sea again

Today’s prompt from NaPoWriMo was fun but challenging for me. This poem uses anagrams of my name, Sandy Baker, as inspiration for the writing. I’ve used exact anagram phrases in seventeen places and anagram like phrases in other spots.  Can you find them?  What’s an anagram?  A word or phrase formed by rearranging the letters of another word or phrase