Word Poetry

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Site design: Skeleton

Sample Poems by Martha Deborah Hall


Getting the Goods

We’re beyond playing bridezilla. The highlight of the day is not cleaning the cave or filling the salt shaker. Now that we’ve crawled out from under a rock, let it be known we’re here for the mountain! We can worship at the self-altar and don’t have to eat our stress. We’ve learned to live alone and like it, pump gas, have our own checking accounts. We may have to pay for the first round of drinks ourselves, but we can go back and have sex with an ex and then be on our way. Or we can stay at home, tell blond guy jokes, and eat Randy Candy M and M’s until our faces turn as lime green as the cover over the chocolate. We can start a mag and name it “Play Things,” marry another man or a woman. We can go skinny dipping, dog sledding, throw our bras at the moon if we want. You’re still allowed to hold the door for us, but stop slamming it in our faces.





Wallow-Wallow, Nyah-Nyah


Okay, so put us in policewomen's uniforms. Get out
a wooden stool and place us in naughty corners.
We stomp like roaring gorillas, smash a dozen
fresh eggs and leave yolk smears on people
in our way. We may give others migraines, but don't
give up the fight when we're right. We speak up
about the crap and piss on our Complex tennis courts,
nix the exorbitant condo fees spent on whims
($17,000 to remove a handful of bats, $10,000
to repair a granite stonewall that could have been fixed
in ten minutes by a strong woman). We hammer out
our beliefs and blast e-mails to others. We do not give up,
choose fight over flight, want rotten corn stalks
removed from our figurative fields. We are hissing baby snakes
shedding their skin. And we win.



Pet Peeves

A crafty pickerel jumped from my fishnet.
My goose Padre was pummeled by a fox.
A snowplow ran over my Golden Retriever.
My cat Pinocchio mauled by a fox on the moor.
A kid pushing a perambulator flattened my duck's foot.
Our rooster lost its tail pestering hens in the coop.
My pet rock sleeps under my pillow.
It remains unharmed every night (so far).



Where I Don't Like To Tread


Follow your heart,
my heart's in your hands,
heart on my sleeve,
places in the heart,
the heart of the crowd,
heartache,
heartbreak,
lonely hearts,
cold-hearted,
open-heart surgery
hard-hearted.



Walking on Eggshells

Don't need a bed in Stockholm, I'm at home in my New Hampshire granite bunk...


Not!!! So what if I shine at two in the morning, get up, read and write, try to be as quiet as the church mouse I am not, so as not to have my nocturnal sleeplessness habits be in the faces of next-door neighbors. I act like a red crisp apple in what I try to get done. During the day I won't even wear a touch of mascara or any other make-up, this woman with many wrinkles and tiresome hairdo which is cut too short. I'm like a pit-bull without a perm. Later, on many mornings, after I'm able to go back to bed and sleep for several hours, I stumble along rainy streets on daily walks as I try to stuff abscessing anger and cloyingly pretend I had a good night's sleep.



Belly Aching

I’m not angry with you but with many other items in the past. Here’s a list of what makes me, like Humpty Dumpty, fall down and go boom: Evening darkness crunches me once it arrives each night. My heart goes to a low echelon. I feel like I could collect only one dollar for it at a consignment shop. I hate vacuuming. I practically tumble over the wire every time I yank it from its cage. Obviously, women usually vacuum. If men did, I’m certain one of them would have invented a cord that automatically changes to an in-out position according to one’s movements. I hate turning clothes right-side-in after they’ve been laundered. My temper falls from grace. Next on my list is washing my hair and then having to set it with a curling iron. Moving furniture makes my spirit soar at first and then tumble. I moved five pieces around this week, dragging them from to room. This morning I moved each one back to its original spot. Even a small set of silver candlesticks had to “return home.” Let’s take a look at people who always criticize the toils, efforts, and labors of others and who never lift a finger themselves. So long. You can go fall off a cliff as far as I’m concerned. My stream rushes with more. Shall I call a neighbor to see if I can borrow a Prozac to settle down? I said Prozac, you’ll notice, not your typical cup of sugar. Hear me? Let's see. Where was I? Oh yeah. Let’s get back to my hair. So fine that it never has lift, I feel like I look like a hippopotamus every morning after I set it. Sorry, hippos, but you ain’t my role models. Although my days of jogging with a kid in the baby carriage and the golden retriever on a leash to my left have gone by, I’ll never forget how few people would wait to let us cross the streets ahead of them, and, while I’m at it, guess how many items a person who wouldn’t let me go first had yesterday in the grocery store? Fifty. I had one. Need I say more? Talk about fallen manners and lack of courtesy. And one last item before I depart. I’m left-handed, so I always seem to turn on left faucets first. Hey you, Mr. Right-Handed inventors, please design more faucets that flow through the middle.  To be continued…Tee Hee—I’ll talk about filing my nails.