he handles his pen with aplomb

the poet had nothing,
nothing but words,
in a well-spoken cursive, delightful.
his words hit on themes
sometimes too obscene,
sometimes too intensely insightful.

he had no other talents
to give him that balance
of steady and bankable income
because most of the time
he was speaking in rhyme,
but isn’t that poetry’s symptom?

with no will to liveflourish
and too little to give
he left home with a weight on his shoulders
leaving behind
what was left of his mind
and a shelf full of tiny tin soldiers.

his sisters spent years
with some kind volunteers
his momma just wanted him near her…
or someone named Keith,
with her losing her teeth
it was getting much harder to hear her.

his rescuers claimed that
his hands were inflamed
when they found him downtown in the Bowery.
they went out on a limb
and confirmed it was him
when his sentences tended to flowery.

“he may be malnourished
but he writes with a flourish
he handles his pen with aplomb”
so they cleaned up his wounds,
brought him back to his room,
where he penned one last poem for his mom.

© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning

created for the Daily prompt – flourish
but playing in the Daily prompt – volunteer – while i work on something new
and because i love it so much, Daily prompt – clean

10 thoughts on “he handles his pen with aplomb

  1. I like your poem. The title got me in by its rhythm and sound, the first two verses especially and the last two are strong but the middle sags I thought. Seems to go off track to me, but if you like being offbeat and funny then maybe they work.
    I’d remove the two ‘too’s in v.1 – they don’t add anything and they break up the beat ditto the last line could be better without ‘his’
    Love the use of ‘cursive’ and ‘flowery’ and ‘flourish’ – all nice touches.


    1. Thanks for stopping in and taking the time to give your feedback. I do have a strong bent toward the offbeat, my early childhood influences being the likes of Edward Lear and Lewis Carroll. It’s interesting how each person hears a different rhythm. I’ve tried to read it with your suggestions on the “toos” and the “his” but it doesn’t work for me that way.. but your opinions were certainly welcome!


      1. Well you’ve taught me a lesson there Mr Stanly. You march to your own beat – good for you. You’ve made a conscious choice about your words, that’s what matters.


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