culinarily challenged


chef guy gives his flan a jiggle
he gives his lime a twist
he underplays his mastery
he says it’s in the wrist
well my poor wrist don’t have it
unless it’s sara lee
my brain refrains from learning
kitchen_disasteras my custard
starts to thicken
i feel my pulse
begin to quicken
my heart goes
i see a shadow
pass my window
when i look down
my flan’s a lump
i guess i’ll never get it
i guess it’s no big deal
we’ll drop in on my sister
when we crave a homemade meal


©  2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture courtesy
 created for the Daily prompt – jiggle and the Daily prompt – quicken

you are the center


the company
you keep
can make
your day
and make
your heart
and if i had
my way
then we would
never be apart
you are the party
you are the center
of the world
my man
my girl
the center of
my world

© 2003 & 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
 Daily prompt – center

no wind blows here

her mind’s become a wasteland
an arid desert town
abandoned by its residents
all that’s left is brown
nothing grows here
no wind blows here
do not ask
‘cuz no one knows here
she can’t think now
she can’t focus
today she got her diagnosis



© 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by _marion, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – arid

you know what you’ve got

you know what you’ve got
i can tell by the way
that you use it
i stay up late and
cogitate it, babe,
you know how much
i’d hate to see you bruise it

you’ve got the moves
like a cat in control
of a mouse in his hole
you are the news
my heart is dancing in my shoes
i can’t refuse you
don’t want to lose you….

lady, maybe stay, be
my forever baby….
lady, maybe stay, be
my forever baby….
you’ve got a lot of nerve the way
you play with all that curvature….
you’ve gotta stop that shakin’
‘cuz you’re breakin’ all my furniture…
you know what you’ve got
i want what you’ve got…

© 1991 & 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture courtesy
original lyric created for one of my nightclub acts, “Sybil, the Musical
Daily prompt – baby

his triumph’s temporary

he tosses out a racial slur
like it’s o.k. to say
believing, with his man in charge,
that things have gone his way
that now he has his rights back
to hate and pass it on
not seeing that no matter what
the future marches on
that those who know
and those who’ve learneddracumel_by_darransims
that everyone is equal
that those survivors
of the years
will not accept a sequel
his triumph’s temporary
good people will prevail
and he’ll be sent
back to his rock
his legs around his tail


© 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by darran sims, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – slur

rhonda did a rhumba

rhonda did a rhumba
it was rhythmic
it was raw
impressive for a rhino
who had not rhumba-ed before
she crushed the rhododendrons
she destroyed the rhubarb too
but rhonda’s rheumatism
was relieved, so that was new
rhonda in her rhinestones
is reflected in the lake
her rump’s creating ripples
making her pal rhea quake
rhonda’s been rhapsodic
and her rhetoric’s turned nasty
she’s been feeling randy
since she had her rhinoplasty


© 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture by ben kerckx, courtesy
created for the Daily prompt – rhythmic

hide and don’t seek

happy in their hideout
hyenas jumped about
lion-and-hyenacertain that their lion friends
would never find them out
they played a round of slap jack
and then they played another
then switched to kick ball
fun for all
’til willie kicked his brother
they started to get bored a bit
their hideout started reeking
they didn’t know that hours ago
their lion friends stopped seeking


© 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture courtesy
Daily prompt – hideout

no, please, don’t

please don’t cleaning-381089__340
give me
gifts with
it’s insipid
it’s a curse
tiny thingies
very clingy
that making
cleaning house
much worse

© 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
picture courtesy
Daily prompt – glitter

the blur…

…a moment in childhood

a blur just went by
sudden and fast
it was here for a second
and then it was past
it was white and enormous
or yellow and wee
it went by so quickly
i couldn’t quite see
but i know it went by,
i’m not dreaming, because
a crowd is now staring
at where the blur was

whether the blur was
too big or to small
a low-flying bat or
a high-bouncing ball
a car speeding past us
or the car close behind
i decided to put the blur
out of my mind
and go on with my business
as the others insisted
forgetting that ever
the blur had existed

the schoolyard is noisy
it’s roaring with chatter
the grown-ups are wondering
what is the matter
the students all witnessed
a similar blur
one thought it a rabbit
with fluffy white fur
one thought it a snowstorm
with one clump of snow
i said ask the teacher,
she surely would know

miss engles, the teacher,
looks sadly confused
like if she smiles or giggles
it won’t mean she’s amused
she’s saying it must be
a magical trick
a blur made with mirrors
quite large and quite thick
hung from the sky
on threads clear and strong
the students all think
she is dreadfully wrong


the secret is out
now the whole city’s heart
of the blur that flew down
our streets like a bird
everyone’s worried
about what it could be
a ghost from the graveyard
or a beast from the sea
but it didn’t say boo
and it didn’t go yelp
the city has hired
the coast guard for help

the coast guard is searching
the sea for the blur
while the city’s in havoc
the state is astir
the people are hollering
out in the streets
and throwing themselves
at the governor’s feet
there are janitors posted
on trash red alert
in case the blur hid
underneath some old dirt


something has happened
it’s slowed down the rush
the noise has ceased fire
there’s a deafening hush
except for a tv
in a shop for tattoos
that’s owned by a biker
that’s playing the news
a whole crowd is standing there
watching, together,
they just ran a story
and “ding! here’s the weather:
“…this just in from
the weather center
the seas will be calmer,
the winds will be gentler
if you happened to notice
some low-flying clouds
zipping through suburbs
and stirring up crowds
speeding like trains
in a terrible hurry
racing like track stars
but somewhat more blurry…


“…says our weather pro,
the clouds were just curious
they wanted to know
what on earth was so glorious
it seems they’ve lost interest
and wafted away
so now we’re predicting
a sun-shiney day.
now back to our program
be sure to stay tuned…”
the tv flicked off
and a few people swooned
it stayed silent awhile
as the coast guard cleared out
some people went home
while some wandered about
some yelled at their children
some yelled at their wives
but everyone felt
a great change in their lives
and to this day some
still don’t trust
cloudy days or cloudy eyes
or even clouds of dust
but i myself am fond of clouds
i watch for them each day
and hope another low one comes
and carries me away
if one should come i’ll latch on fast
and hold on very tight
i think that it could carry me
i’m really very light
but i’ll hold on and sail with it
back up into the sky
if clouds can learn to walk the earth
then i can learn to fly


© 1977 & 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
pictures courtesy
created in high school as a children’s book, but i never did find an illustrator
Daily prompt – blur




we heard a
loud sound
then the ship
ran aground
now we’re
walking around
all off-kilter
everyone leans
and they’re
their jeans

‘cuz on cruises
you eat
with no filter

© 2016 and 2017 kStan(ly) Lanning
originally created for this picture from sunday photo fiction
Daily prompt – sound