Answers Poem by Herbert Nehrlich


Rating: 3.2

He crouched in front of all his books,
ten thousand and a few
he looked at his certificates
one hundred, none were new.
Remembered all his special honours
bestowed by envious peers
and wondered silently inside
was it just smoke and mirrors?
Sat on the floor, the crouching hurt
and cried a bit, alone
it was a shock when it occurred
to him that in his bone
a nasty parasite had lodged
who had an appetite
for living tissue as it dodged
the killer cells with spite.
What a caressing devastation
to find that all one knows
means nothing in the scheme of things
and that it simply shows
we humans, dumb and arrogant
pretend because we must
and turn into a sycophant
in desperado frust
So Papa started with the first
of all the hardbound works
and re-awakened his old thirst
and thought perhaps there lurks
the answer to his desperate plea
if not he would be doomed.
For many weeks he was engrossed
with all his dearest friends
he often wandered, became lost
and tied up old loose ends.
The memories of high school days
and then the cruel studies
came flooding back with old Hooray's
and like a bunch of buddies
the authors of so many books
who'd passed so long ago
had kept their bright and brilliant looks
and smiled their stern Hello.
And finally, he knew the answer
not one of them had lived
and many had succumbed to cancer
they would have been quite miffed
that all their learnings was no use
and even frank denial
was killing that great golden goose
with liquid from a vial.
He saw and welcomed his own end
stood up and tugged his tie
remembering every single friend
he then laid down to die.

Amberlee Carter 11 March 2005

hey Herb, how are ya? hehe, dare I really ask. This poem touches on a few truths, and yet I don't think it's one of your better pieces. I think all this bickering over poetry is pretty funny really. What I think is funnier is how we post our work on an online site and then call ourselves poets...and even funnier still, is the fact that because we have this status we feel it is our job to tell others when they are acting less than the part. Understand, this isn't meant to be offensive, it's merely an observation. If people don't want to vote they shouldn't have to, but they shouldn't belittle those who do. However, the same goes both ways speaking in general, perhaps this was a discussion that shouldn't have involved anyone but you and the girl who started it... I can say all this because I'm not even in the top 500 poets on this anyway, let's all move on...come to my house, we'll have peace over tea.. Keep writing world!

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Michael Shepherd 11 March 2005

Why don't we just acknowledge that what really counts is the hit list of readers? On which count...

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Herbert Nehrlich1 11 March 2005

No Sonja. You are either unwilling or unable to grasp what this situation is all about. If you do not see that your comments were insulting (not just scathing which I do not mind much) then we did indeed grow up in two different worlds. If you had taken the time to read what I said as clearly as I could and which was understood with no trouble by others you would have found it hard to respond the way you did. I do not believe that no insult was intended. Your current comment says nothing. H

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***** ***** 11 March 2005

I am, to be honest, quite baffled that you could garner insult from that comment I made. I meant no insult, just to say that we should allow others their right to exercise a vote. If they choose not to make a comment it is obviously to avoid having to defend it through days of this kind of thing. The ego comment seemed appropriate, as everyone nowadays seems so sensitive to any criticism. It think more thick skin is needed by one and all. S. ps I can and would appreciate honest comment on my work, just as I exercise that right when I comment and other's work. There is little point in back-slapping all the time. A poet knows when a piece is good - and I have given many a complimentary comment on such. I make critical comments, which are generally appreciated on other sites, but here they are taken as an affront, which is quite frankly tedious. S.

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Herbert Nehrlich1 10 March 2005

Yes Jake you are right, it is time to move on. After admitting your previous mistake I wonder if you will own up to the other one. Sandra's diatribe against Sonja was in part triggered by Sonja's insulting comments directed at me. In addition, she may have found that Sonja also dishes out harsh critique on the works of others, accusing them of the very faults that she then indulges in in her own poems. I dabble in critiquing others and have only goodwill (?) and honesty on my side but do not consider myself an able critic. Few people are. Saying that Sandra proved herself no better than the a bit unnecessary too. But that is enough of this. I know you mean well so let's all write some more poems. Then we can critique them and, ........ H

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Delicate Heart 21 June 2014

so touchy and telling. it moved from the inside. ten outta ten...........

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Mahnaz Zardoust-Ahari 13 September 2005

This was a very touching poem Herbert.....Once we acept what will happen we become at peace with it.

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Herbert Nehrlich1 17 March 2005

Amberlee, I did put you on my list of very thin skinned poets. I think the French call it touché. It always amazes me when people get snappy the moment someone points out something they ought to have noticed in themselves. And probably did. H

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Amberlee Carter 14 March 2005

Very well Herbert, sorry for the misunderstanding. Write in peace, you'll hear no more from me. Always, Amberlee

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Herbert Nehrlich1 11 March 2005

Amberlee. You are making the same mistake as others have. You r observation is sadly lacking. People do not have to vote. The entire issue was about cowards posting ONES from their dark corners and then run and hide. It never ceases to amaze me how loose people are with the truth. Me and the girl who started it? Who was that? If you would like to comment on my stuff or my ongoing 'battles' please call me by my first name (not an abbreviation) and please have your facts straight. I don't agree with you on the quality of the poem either but that's alright, Aunt Hulda said. Your comment today should an abysmal lack of care in the world of communication with others. H

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