Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Update Cycle

What's breaking news to one
may be another's
ancient history.

Good night
not goodbye

they say on TV
(or used to anyway)

because there will
surely be more
news tomorrow.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Monday, April 29, 2013

On The Ground

A female soldier
pleaded guilty
to two counts of desertion
after fleeing to Canada
in 2007 
to avoid a second tour
of duty in Iraq

the desert.

She said she had become

but Canada's not sure
whether to give
her a home
because for this war

(unlike that little one
in the 60s)

she decided to enlist

which of course
is true.


This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Democracy Will Hear You Now

Wait your turn
nervous half-listening
They see you
whoops not yet... Okay go now
you speak they listen.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Between Us And Them

Detectives discovered
a rusted piece of landing gear
wedged between
an apartment building
and a mosque

and believed to be a remnant
of one of the hijacked planes
September 11 2001.

Back then this country
had lots of questions

like who did this
and why

all of which
needed to be asked but

the first question to answer

was and is "Who do we
want to be?"

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Left To Their Own Devices

The House Intelligence Committee reported
that the two bombs
at the Boston marathon
were detonated with a remote control
for toy cars.

Life is but a video game?

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Havens Addresses a Complex Issue

In 1990
before a show
at the Cellar Door
Richie Havens let the audience know
what he told someone who asked
how he felt about Washington.

"What a good question.
what a good question

so I said
'Washington's groovy'

that's what I said
and it is.

For Romans."

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Experimental Design

Today the Grand Old
Party proves Constitution
is just a theory.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Below and Beyond

Fox News
Fair and Balanced

does not mean
what you think it means

having a hot blonde bombshell
use one person and one fact
to casually imply

that becoming a devout Muslim
should have been
a clear indicator
of a future in bombing
unsuspecting New Englanders

and a man
with a trustworthy cropped haircut
saying "Yes, I agree."

Perhaps you were led astray
by the word "story".

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Friday, April 19, 2013

We're Already In It

It's a little-known fact
that starting
each Spring

you can track
the increasing liberalization
and "worldliness"
of Southern Baptist churches.

Over the decades
one will note
there's been a steady increase
in pastors who

glistening and bright red
and deep
into a lively
sermon of hellfire
and damnation

every line
on their face and hands
dedicated to making it feel
all too real

are able
to calm down
a bit
wipe off the sweat

and say

"Well maybe
some of the Devil's wrath
made it up here too.


This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Just Us

Can the world really be
just humans versus
other humans

perpetually at war
or battle or skirmish

on the ground
in the air
within ourselves?

We are the humans
with feelings spent
beyond sorrow beyond rage
towards what other humans

Sometimes it seems
like that silence
is a spectator

showing us how
to carry the burden

but that would be too easy.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Another Day in the Neighborhood

It's impossible
to know each number
in a sequence

fill in x number hurt killed
for another senseless y tragedy.

You can wake up
each morning
and grow numb
with numbers. 
Look for the helpers
said Nancy
to her son Fred

You will always find
the people who are helping.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Strength in Numbers

The word

Can it be rebranded
as a good thing?

Protective cells
that swarm

to protect and repair
their host. 

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Un-Broken Man

In a few short days
the Kool-Aid "man"
will be unveiling
his 2013 image

a down-to-earth
computer-generated celebrity.

This citizen remembers
when the commercials
changed from

a gentle picnic
on a warm spring day
with a little folk ditty
playing in the background
to an obese pitcher
busting through a wall
to offer the contents
of his glass torso
to the happy little kids.

This citizen remembers thinking
"Why didn't he break?"

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

In Case of Dinner

If a friend of yours
invites you to a nice dinner

wear a tailored suit
show good manners at all times

and make relevant intelligent
and most of all respectful points

about the deficit
about gun control
about immigration

and whatever else
he asks you about.

When it's time to go
shake his hand
and thank him for his time.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Under Pressure

Rick Santorum
was "Google-bombed"
once already

by a savage man
who usurped
his namesake

(both retroactively
and henceforth)

into every
un-Biblical act
of The Act.

But Rick you poor man
now you say

that accepting gay marriage
would be
for the GOP.

This citizen is sad
to think
that you would do that
just because
you have to betray
who you really are.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Maggie You Couldn't Have Tried Anymore

this citizen
was neither in
the place
nor time to
know you

and so 
this citizen
shall reserve judgment
but to wherever
you're called

take care of yourself.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Post-Future Perfect

When the earth 
has smashed itself
back into
its component parts

and the eternal creatures
who evolved
from the radioactivity 

can not conceive
of things like "Saturday" 
or "mail delivery" or
any "communication requiring
primitive physical movement
of atomic matter"

the Emily Post Institute
will still exist
as a sentient feather
in a black hat
slogging diligently

in the name
of the timeless virtues

and respect

through the yellow
sulfuric haze.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Zero-Sum Game

One side
stands for
will always stand
for something
for good 

and the other side
stands up
wills itself to stand
for that something
for its own good.

Math said
minus one times
minus one
make one.

Someone in history said
"The enemy
of my enemy
is my friend."

This citizen came to accept
both statements

while still doubting
the logic

but sometimes
those bleeding hearts
do push against
those reactionaries

bringing the equation
to the side of love

and though
it seems like
small reward

in a certain light
it's wonderful
that we can stand together
as approximately 1.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Hold That Dough (Obama's Sort-Of Rap)

(This one goes out
to all the government workers
who are taking unpaid
time off
and to all the men and women
out there who wonder
"What's the deal
with this deal?")

Hold that dough
man I'm gonna cut a check
just for John and Jane Q
to see that I connect 

Stay with me folks
look I got the thing right here
a check for 20K
or in case it's hard to hear
twenty-thousand dollars
better make it  
last a year

I know this is symbolic
since the Feds spend this
like [snaps] 

but just know ...
just know ...

we will ...
get through this
my fellow ...

Thank you
peace out!

(Lord, I sure hope so.)

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013


North Carolina
y'all fine lawmaker fellows
and women please please

don't embarrass us   
He says those nails hurt way worse
than the Bill of Rights.

This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

In Your Head, Zombies

Obama decided to give
a cool $100 million
to the B.R.A.I.N.

Brain Research
Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies
(one of those delightful
recursive acronyms).

Perhaps a decade from now
neuroscientists will come back
and share with the public

the news we
already knew:
humans have so
so much
untapped potential.


This poem © 2013 Emily Cooper.