Ninja Nursery Rhymes

Public Domain image from Wikipedia

Ninja be nimble,

Ninja be quick,

Ninja knock you on the noggin with a big stick.


Ninja be stealthy… healthy… and wise,

Ninja snatch like a snake, pull out your eyes.


Biscuit in a basket,

Ninja put you in a casket.


Heading home from the archives,

I met this cat who had five lives.

He’d met four ninja in lives past.

One life was lost in a big blast…

two were stabbed,

and the last one gassed.

Reaching home, ninja at his door,

his lives remaining numbered four.


Uh, oh, Ninja,

Have you any heads?

Yes, sir, yes, sir,

Three over in the shed.

One for my Lady,

One for my Lord,

One for the practice,

’cause I got a new sword.


Eeny, meeny, miny, egg.

Catch the Shogun by his leg.

If he hollers, make him beg.

Eeny, meeny, miny, egg.


Hey, Willie Winkie, you’re making too much noise.

Running around town, checking on girls and boys.

If you’d have done your job, and shut the kid up.

I’d not have had to put Ambien in his juice cup.


POEM: Desert Story

Play it out, like a six-gun Western.
Let the sun hang in the mid-day sky.
Have him search for a cool-water cistern.
Croaking and choking that “the end is nigh.”

Hand him a glimpse of clear, clean water,
but let the mirage vanish into sand.
Trotting up to it as lamb to slaughter,
let him know he’s surely been damned.

Then he’ll succumb to a parched stupor.
The light fades from that cowboy’s eyes.
No spur-jangle of a nearing trooper,
but dark clouds off in the western skies.

A good story would see him wake with droplets on his cheeks.
But this ain’t that kind of story, the desert plays for keeps.

5 Haiku on Consciousness

thoughts form & float,
reflections of a gliding bird
over murky pools.

sleeping deeply,
universe? where art thou?
do you rest too?

within my dreams,
i feel the familiar,
but see the strange.

images gel,
but seeking sense in them
sends them hiding.

next car rolls fore,
i yank the parking brake,
halting false back drift.

POEM: Flower Market

Taken in September of 2013 in Bangalore at K.R. Market

Garland coils in saffron and yellow.
Burlap bags of loose blooms in many hues.
Free petals strewn across the floor.

Vendors sit like stamen, still amid the chaos.
Customers waft around like pollen on the wind.
And workers flit about like industrious bees.

POEM: The Destroyer

Mighty Fungi, the destroyer,
rending like a divorce lawyer.
There are no bonds you can’t dissolve.
It’s by your graces our world revolves.
Your rap is bad, but we all know,
the pile of stiffs would ceaseless grow,
if you weren’t breaking down the dead.

Plus, we love your work on beer and bread.

POEM: My Nature, or: Water Cycle

Lay me down amid the mountains,

where the sky can call to me.

Set me under the falling rains.

Let me flow down to the sea.

I will float up toward the heavens,

and I’ll glide across the sky.

I will tour the Wonders seven

as a tear drop, sans an eye.

Rain down, run down, rise and repeat,

cycling to the end of days,

feeding plants and beating the heat,

heeding the summons of sun rays.

Long vacation in a glacier.

This is just my human nature.

POEM: Dizzy

Public Domain photo from NASA – ISS [International Space Station]

i’m seeing the world through spin arc,
like long exposure photos of a night sky,
the ones that generate Van Goghesque color swirls,
and always offer a stock-still element for contrast:
a tree,
a windmill,
a radio tower,
or a satellite solar array.

“Stock-still” is a bold damned lie
for something moving at 600,000 meters per second,
as it:
and expands
its way through a universe
that loathes stillness so much
that even the atoms in a block of cold iron,
floating in the depths of space,
are jittery.

POEM: Some Clichéd Advice

Steer into that dizzy skid.

Don’t pop the top, blow the lid.

Life happens: while making plans.

No plans? Just kick that can.

Dance, like they ain’t watchin’ you.

Buy a vowel, get a clue.

Yesterday is history,

Tomorrow is a mystery,

Today is a gift, like socks.

Which you should grab, after dropping your…*


[*Note: I caught “Full Metal Jacket” on TV last night.]

POEM: Himalaya

How the feet slow, up amid the ice flow.
Where air is rare, and each step goes higher,
thinking of those who froze or maybe lost a toe,
yet trudged through the scree, the snow, and the mire.

But who’s ever said it wasn’t worth the trip?
You may well hate to feel yourself suffocate,
but you’ll buy your permit, and get all equipped,
strapping on your pack, taking task with fate.

To see the orange glow on the ridgeline,
like fire dancing on the edge of a knife.

But what monster has such a wicked spine,
begging a fight to the last ounce of life.

Please meet the lovely “abode of snows,”
I think you’ll find her worth the throes.

Varanasi Haiku

Sacred Ganga,
Welcome to our city.
What gifts you’ll take.


Narrow warren,
lanes lined with bright-hued goods,
bangle blind and lost.


Cattle herd
roams the parched mudflat,
kicking up dust.


A golden bridge
visits each morning, and
exits silently.


Wood stackers
endlessly working
the burning ghats.