the path of least resistance

if madeline is happy
then we are happy too
we dance and shout
and run about
while she plays the kazoo
if madeline is melancholypug-1209129_960_720
then we are that as well
when tears of sadness fill her eyes
we comfort her and empathize
though she can’t always tell

when madeline is moody
we’ve learned to keep our distance
when storm clouds break
we tend to take
the path of least resistance
we go as far as we can get
so she’ll have no regrets

© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by unsplash, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – moody

ice fishing in brazil

tortoise-tamar-projectpoor little ivan
ice fishing in brazil
keeps falling
in the water
he almost always will
since ice has not
appeared here
it hasn’t yet,
he had ice in
his soda cup
which melted
hours ago
poor little ivan
what a rotten
not just ‘cuz
south america,
but also ‘cuz,


© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by gustavoboulhosa, courtesy
created for the Daily Prompt – fishing

an eclectic, maddening display

the neighbor’s yard is an eclectic,
maddening display
his christmas lights, winking,
blink an intricate array
carols fill the winter air
piped in for baby jesus
wooden soldiers bang their drums
and bells chime with the breezes
nativities and snowmen sit
with santa and his sleigh
there’s every kind of animal

predator and prey
an endless stream of visitors
have taken up our parking
and set the pups who live nearby
constantly to barking
we hope this guy’s electric bill
won’t fiscally undo him
but as for christmas spirit
we say more power to him


© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture courtesy
Daily prompt – maddening

the hamster

the bad thing
about old ways
they creep back in
if you don’t look out
a folly forgotten
a small dose of friction
rekindles addiction
old ways are stains
on the soul
the habit-trail
of human hamsterness
back on the wheel
running in circles
i thought i quit you
that was it with you
and here you are
concealing the scars
do i give a guy a break?
do i make the same mistake?
do i fall?
do i fail?
do i bail?


© 2014 & 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by ricky kharawala, courtesy
Daily prompt – folly

new year’s resolution

a conundrum of sorts has arisen
a question of whether or no
a quandary that’s taunting me
to go or not to go
in here it’s warm and cozy
out there it’s cold and severe
in here it’s calm but lonely
out there, free bubbles and beer
and people i might like may be there
and some that i’m sure that i won’t
and poor transportation
so lots of frustration
so most of me’s telling me don’t
though it’s nice to be asked
to spend time with the castchampagne
out there it is cold
did i tell you i’m old,
at least older than
when this was thrilling?
i’m weighing the pros
but there’s so few of those
so on new year’s i guess
i’ll be chilling.


© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by dariusz sankowski, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – conundrum

disguised but dignified

jack the gnat
was hungry for
a shot at fame
and fortune
he saw the pie
that others had
and wanted
his fair portion
jack wore a cloak
hand made, bespoke,
to fit his modest frame
top-hat-1767535_960_720he wore a little top hat
he held a tiny cane
distinguished was
the way he felt
disguised but dignified
the gnat boys fumed
with jealousy
which fortified his pride
all the giddy
gnat girls swooned
each one of them
but to the world
at large he was, alas,
still imperceptible

© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by kcadrc, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – bespoke
flitting with the Daily prompt – fortune

the right of fight or flight

when the zombies come
don’t be a hero
don’t be dumb
don’t be a fool statistically
survive realistically
when the vampires land
don’t stick around
don’t make a stand
don’t try to find
the right size stake
for heaven’s sake
when the new year starts
don’t give up hope
do not lose heart
don’t leave this country
and help protect it

© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by john hain, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – flee

His canvas at midnight

last night a being
was out there Night Sky Wide Wallpaper
painting magic
swirling snow blew
to and fro
the midnight hue
what clouds
there were
were fleecy sheep
fluffed up and
winter white
the sliver of a moon
was a feather
in the sky
and the stars were the
jewels of the night

© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by bknpk, courtesy\images
created for the Daily prompt – mystical

a beast in his abode

ali baba can’t abide
a beast in his abode
he can’t abide
the way they think
the way they speak
in code
his wife and kids,
have a weakness
for their critters
collecting them
like postage stamps
collecting some
in litters
ali baba
went abroad
in abject
he bought a boat
on which he’ll float
absent of obligations
the sea will be his alibi
soon he’ll realize
some beasts fly


© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by unsplash, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – abide

contented, we sighed

why is it i
keep missing the bus
i’m sitting here waiting
i’m thinking of us
entwined and entangled
contented, we sighed
i’m thinking of you
and the bus goes right by
how is it i
kept missing the clues
the hints you were dropping
the visual cues
detached and distracted
the growing divide
i’m thinking of you
and i can’t help but cry
and there goes another bus
passing me by




© 2016 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by skitterphoto, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – missing