The Lesson

Chaos ruled OK in the classroom
as bravely the teacher walked in
the nooligans ignored him
his voice was lost in the din

'The theme for today is violence
and homework will be set
I'm going to teach you a lesson
one that you'll never forget'

School Is Not So Cool

School, School, School,
A school is not so cool
We're here 5 days a week
8 hours a day.
School, School, School,
A school is not so cool.
People laugh when we fall
we just have to make a call.
School, School, School
A school is not so cool.

Fifteen, Maybe Sixteen Things To Worry About

My pants could maybe fall down when I dive off the diving board.
My nose could maybe keep growing and never quit.
Miss Brearly could ask me to spell words like stomach and special.
(Stumick and speshul?)
I could play tag all day and always be "it."
Jay Spievack, who's fourteen feet tall, could want to fight me.
My mom and my dad--like Ted's--could want a divorce.
Miss Brearly could ask me a question about Afghanistan.
(Who's Afghanistan?)
Somebody maybe could make me ride a horse.


Homage to Kenneth Koch

If I were doing my Laundry I'd wash my dirty Iran
I'd throw in my United States, and pour on the Ivory Soap,
scrub up Africa, put all the birds and elephants back in
the jungle,
I'd wash the Amazon river and clean the oily Carib & Gulf of Mexico,
Rub that smog off the North Pole, wipe up all the pipelines in Alaska,
Rub a dub dub for Rocky Flats and Los Alamos, Flush that sparkly

Homework! Oh, Homework!

Homework! Oh, Homework!
I hate you! You stink!
I wish I could wash you away in the sink,
if only a bomb
would explode you to bits.
Homework! Oh, homework!
You're giving me fits.

I'd rather take baths
with a man-eating shark,

Being Old: The Advantages And Disadvantages....... [(See The Title): Long; Personal? ; Humour? ]

For my poems, my friend Valsa George has a hunger.
She’s over fifty, but, compared to me, she is younger.
She suggested I write about ‘the advantages of being old’.
It’s a challenge, but, Valsa, on this idea you have sold......

I – The Advantages

Retirement income though you’re done working.
[Why, now, are some of you readers smirking? ]

Farm Boy After Summer

A seated statue of himself he seems.
A bronze slowness becomes him. Patently
The page he contemplates he doesn't see.

The lesson, the long lesson, has been summer.
His mind holds summer, as his skin holds sun.
For once the homework, all of it, was done.

What were the crops, where were the fiery fields
Where for so many days so many hours

My Excuses

I started on my homework
but my pen ran out of ink.
My hamster ate my homework.
My computer's on the blink.

I accidentally dropped it
in the soup my mom was cooking.
My brother flushed it down the toilet
when I wasn't looking.

! ! As Parents To Our Parents

They never teach you this at school;
they'll try to teach you reading, writing, 'rithmetic
in their own instructed ways;

but now, if anyone suggested it, there'd be howls
about the impertinence, the interference,
the rights, the dangers of this and that -

but all the same, they never teach you:
how to get on with your parents.


Ricky was 'L' but he's home with the flu,
Lizzie, our 'O,' had some homework to do,
Mitchell, 'E' prob'ly got lost on the way,
So I'm all of love that could make it today.


You "adults", you exasperate me
with your evasions and delays.
You're going to have to change
some of the ways that you behave.
You aren't doing your homework,
you haven't cleaned the planet,
You aren't standing up to bullies,
you haven't been sharing your things,
and you're even playing with guns.
And you're pretending everything's ok.

The Homework Machine

The Homework Machine,
Oh, the Homework Machine,
Most perfect
contraption that's ever been seen.
Just put in your homework, then drop in a dime,
Snap on the switch, and in ten seconds' time,
Your homework comes out, quick and clean as can be.
Here it is— 'nine plus four?' and the answer is 'three.'
Oh me . . .

Crater Face

is what we called her. The story was
that her father had thrown Drano at her
which was probably true, given the way she slouched
through fifth grade, afraid of the world, recess
especially. She had acne scars
before she had acne—poxs and dips
and bright red patches.
I don't remember
any report in the papers. I don't remember
my father telling me her father had gone to jail.

Sure Hit Songwriter’s Pen

Now I was hangin' round Nashville writin' songs and playin' 'em for all of the stars
Watchin' 'em laugh and hand 'em back livin' on hope and Hershey bars
So I pawned my guitar and bought a ticket home and I's headin' for the Trailway bus
When I seen an old fountain pen laying in the gutter so I stopped and picked it up
It was worn-out bent and cast aside you know kinda sorta like myself
So I sat down on the curb and wrote a little song
That told the world how both of us felt
Then I run that song down to Music Row and before I had time to spit

I Cannot.....

I cannot relax and read a book
There is always dinner to cook
I cannot think of staring into space
I may miss a chance in the rat race
I cannot sit back and read a novel
There will be snow in the pathway to shovel
I cannot spend an extra fifteen minutes in bed
There is always breakfast to be prepared
I cannot invite friends on weekdays to tea
There is always kids’ homework to oversee

The Sparrow And The Lesson

I was then a young boy of ten.
Was doing homework, before the afternoon game.
The door was closed but the window open,
When I nearly finished, came a surprise, sudden.

From nowhere came a rushing sparrow,
Entered my room through the open window.
Kept circling over my head, yet unaware,
The naughty child had some naughty desire.

Why Do I Hate My Homework?

Why do I hate my homework?
It is a pest like a brother
Or a sister of another
It is like a very boring book
Or like my mom’s disgusting cook
It is a creature of its own
The kind that makes me gag and moan

Why do I hate my homework?
I really hate my homework

(021) My Luck Abandoned Me

Ever since I set foot in school for my new academic year
It looks like luck has abandoned me
My bus came late to pick me up for school
So guess who is punished, me!
In the first few days we were given so much homework,
So many projects to make,
So many tests to prepare for
I thought my head would break
The teachers are very strict
And on craft items, my pocket-money I will have to spend

Tests And Homework And Quizzes And School

You know that if there was one thing,
That you could take from school,
It wouldn't be art or math or history,
It would be work.

Those ugly things you want to blow up,
and smash,
and burn,
and crinkle,
and rip,

Wednesday Never Came (For September 11th Victims)

It is the fortune of poeple
that the shadows
of our futures do not
lie heavy
on our minds.

We go about
our lives with
no worry for the future
that lies in wait,