Dr. Seuss Syndrome

I may have Dr.Seuss syndrome
At the drop of a hat I will write a poem
And torture words till they scream and shout
And maybe that's what it's all about

Expressing what I feel in rhyme
From the very common to the quite sublime
Will anyone read these words of wit?
In truth it matters not a bit

What will be I just can't see
So I guess I simply will be me
The words I write on the waiting page
May be like smoke, or may last an age

Life is so fragile, so brief and uncertain
Time in its wisdom will pull back the curtain
In its fullness to show us all how it will be
A series of now's touching eternity

I know there'll come a time
When I will be no more
When I will say goodbye
When I'll go through the door
To find whatever's waiting
Beyond the world we know
But I'm not in a hurry
Or too anxious now to go.

There is so much to do
As long as I am living
Experiencing it all
The taking and the giving
A wild and mixed-up maelstrom
Of sorrow and of joy
My God, but it is often fun
"Yahoo" and then "Oh Boy!"

And so I sing my gratitude
To whoever is Creator
The majesty of the great "I am"
We'll all meet soon or later
It just might be that all we see
Is naught but random chance
But I don't think so, as in Love we flow
Through our cosmic, karmic, dance

Yin and Yang, Sturm und Drang
Opposites define each other
Good and Bad, Happy Sad
Mother, Father, Sister, Brother
All of us are simply guests
For a moment, or an hour
Of an unknown something with many names
Some call a Higher Power

  John Haigis 7/20/14
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Poetry 1

Past Times Present home
What is the voice of God?


What is the voice of God?
Does it come in booming tones?
Sonorous and deep and rich
A lot like James Earl Jones.

Or is it a bit more subtle
Like wind on empty air
Singing sighing thru the trees
As if it isn’t there?

Everything around us lives
And changes, dies, or grows
The sentient and insensible
As water softly flows.

If all is but a gift from God
And all within God’s care
Then is it at least possible
God’s voice is everywhere?  

   John Haigis 7/24/14
A poem after the tragic shooting at
Fitzgerald-Mercy Hospita
l

There's been another shooting
Please say it isn't so
The helicopters gather
To give us all the show

How do these things happen
How can these things be
There may be many saying
I'm glad it wasn't me.

A life cut off too quickly
Mental illness in the mire
This story's somewhat different, though
This time they returned fire

John Haigis, 7/25/14
Forgive or Forget

Forgive and forget are two different words
Not really related at all
Though often paired, when the two are compared
The difference may be more than small.

Although both share a root in Germanic "before"
As a preface to the thing that comes after,
To "get" and to "give" are just not the same things
And the nuance can lead to disaster.

To forgive after all is a gift to ourselves
And allows us at last to move on.
It can't change the past, but it opens the future
In a sort of a sine-qua-non

To forget, as a contrast, is to forego the past
It's as if the whole thing never was.
It is never complete, if our past we repeat
By omitting the knowledge of cause.

Moving forward is learning a new way to be
With more choices to help us to cope,
Not getting trapped in the past, to be free at long last
With awareness of self and new hope.

So forget if you must, forgive if you can.
Experience, then learn to let go.
The future is waiting, new moments in time,
Enlightened by all that we know.


      Jan and John Haigis, 7/29/14
The Great War  (YouTube)


The Great War was beginning
A hundred years ago.
The Guns of August rumbling
Sounds ominous and low.
The world around was changing
But they didn't know it then.
The carnage just beginning
That August way back when.

Austria fought Serbia
Which then embroiled Greece.
The other countries soon joined in
Until there was no peace.
A kind of family squabble.
That got somewhat out of hand
They'd been having a good-old arms race
And had to take a stand.

New words would soon be common
Like "Ypres" and "Verdun,"
"over the top" and "stalemate"
And "tank" and "machine gun."
The joy of modern warfare
A waiting world would see
A new world of death and carnage
Dealt out efficiently.

While over in America
We heard the rumbling too
But it was not our business
Beyond our oceans two
A few of us enlisted
To go and fight the Hun.
Most continued day to day,
But we started making guns.

An arsenal of democracy   
Weapons we'd supply
To feed the growing mayhem
But never asking why.
"Take up our quarrel with the foe."
The plea from Flanders's Fields,
A cornucopia of tanks and ships
Of tonnage and of yields.

Oh we'd get in eventually
And join in "over there"
We couldn't see the consequence
Or maybe didn't care.
For war's a great adventure
When in a noble cause,
The bombs and the destruction
And killing without pause.

The gas attacks, the mud, the death
The vermin in the trenches
The relentless rain of screaming shells
To make men lose their senses.
The hollow stare of broken men
The shell shocked who came home
The parades and all the speeches
To welcome back our own.

It all began so subtlety
A hundred years ago
We didn't know it all back then
But now we all should know

       John Haigis 7/30/14
The Wing-Wangers and the Ting-Tangers

The wing-wangers and the ting-tangers had a donnybrook one day
They simply couldn't  find agreement when their favorite song was played
There was no reason for dispute about walla walla bing bang
But the part that went before was all too  murky when they sang   

"My Friend the Witch Doctor" was how the whole song started
All would sing out lustily with vigor quite strong hearted
But when they came to the chorus things got quickly out of hand
Folks all sang it different ways and could not understand

Why the others sang it wrongly when it clearly said "ting tang"
The others strongly disagreed and said it was "wing-wang"
They all could come to unity on oo ee oo ah ah
But no consensus after that and the fight was hard and raw

The ting-tangers were winning and would have likely won the day
But the wing-wangers then rallied and took heart amid the fray
The battle raged for hours in that fearsome, frantic fight
Each one knew within their hearts that they were in the right

At last the battle ended as the cops came in the door
There was mess and carnage everywhere and bodies on the floor
But nothing was resolved that day and still for every more
Each still sings it their own way with a lusty, gusty roar

Oo ee oo ah ah (whatever) sing it out your own way
Oo ee oo ah ah (whatever) oo ee walla walla bing bang

              John Haigis 7/26/14
Will they be waiting?

Will they be waiting to welcome me home?
All of my canine friends with whom I would roam
Off on adventures, the whole world to see
My dog friends, the silence, the meadow, and me.

An afternoon frolic, an afternoon romp
Their ears all a-quiver at the bit they would chomp
Joyous acceptance in their eyes I could see
Happy and joyous to be romping with me

It was no matter where we would go
And even in winter we would romp through the snow
A world to discover, to sniff and to see
They were happy just to be out, a-romping with me

So I fondly remember as I sit in my chair
My four-footed companions who used to be there
Who knows if again someday we all will be...
Once again out a-romping, joyous and free

                John Haigis 7/28/14
We are the Animals Who Tell Stories


We are the animals who tell stories
We tell of past hunts and we tell of past glories
The young one who choose can learn things they can use,
In utilitarian categories.

Knowledge is passed on through voice and song
Cultural memes and the way to belong
Suggestions for actions to gain satisfactions
And sometimes the difference between right and wrong.

Mankind has a very old tale
About ten thousand years in historical scale
But when viewed geologically, it pales chronologically  
Though we leave a distinct human trail.

We have an opposable thumb
Evolutionary advantage for whatever will come
We can grasp sticks and spear throwers, and tools for the
seed sowers  
And be top of the food chain when done.

We are masters of technology
And able to make things as we want them to be
Adapting to arctic wastes or desert’s hot embrace,
We reproduce exponentially.

But we may need to question our pace
And just how many folks can we fit in one place?
Population keeps rising, so it’s not too surprising
That soon we may run out of space.

Extinction we often forget
Has happened before and it may happen yet
Mankind's hegemony could be naught but a memory
We’re playing a kind of roulette.  

                      John Haigis 8/9/14