Four New Poems: July 25, 26 2013 Copyright Doug Stuber

(Happy Birthday Tad!)

Reality Terminal

A chance meeting for the last ten minutes before departure
to different ports allows high school friends, twenty years
removed to line up histories, clap into solid laughs about current
families, one old shared event. The same scene finds one
sixteen-year-old boy hosting two like-aged girls for doughnuts.
It’s clear the odd-numbered table will remain platonic due
in part to his rotund physique, but mostly due to the girls
respect for each other and that neither could be caught dead
with the goofy comedian dough-boy even if he is oft’-
toasted for slamming square high school teachers when their
backs are turned to chalk the board. Clouds give way to
bobbed hairdos, so Marlo Thomas, circa sixty nine. Didn’t you
love those comedies, like Dick Van Dyke, that taught us all how
to surmount the daily grind via humor? “All in the Family,”
albeit racist, towered over such dreck as Ozzy’s reality Osbornes
or dragging Paris and Nicole to a farm. “Once they’ve seen Paris
they’ll never go back to the farm,” in reverse: “Once Paris is
seen on the farm, even pigs will grow boners,” at least for a day.
Bestiality is not entertainment except for the brain dead remnants
of electronica-culture. Simple joy found in real people’s meetings.

Quick Glance Romance

Sixty years of occupation. Still the old men spit when they see
anyone remotely American. Camouflage dressed on young
duty-by-law member lets fly as he passes. You can’t blame
him on one hand, but South Korea’s no Vietnam on the other.
The majesty of steep downtown hill, Buddhist temple attached,
towers over Mokpo’s Maritime cargo carriers, beach goers and
marine trainees alike. Giggles give way to moans as gender-separate
culture crumbles under KPOP siege. Confucius and Psy do the
waist-band tug wrestle made famous in between each’s reign. Psy
wins easily, but, in the end, men remain so picky according to looks,
women due to looks, wallet, personality, job, sincerity, love-of-potential-
mother-in-law, that the romance has fled all dates, as measuring tapes
and complicated social-scientific devices are held, like Geiger-counters,
to the temple and other body parts of “partners” leaving all- or-
nothing choices, or one-night-stands, the exact opposite of what
conservative parents expected, but how could anyone be shocked
when, like the all-important tests in school that force youngsters into
rote learning, and even majors are picked by test results, and marriage
has an age window, value judgments pervade based on not kindness,
empathy, forgiveness, but stature obeying, lying without getting caught.


Her smile, a
beacon, enters bright,
inserts emotion
into their flat town.
Her schedule

is full with new friends
and old. What
can she do to help meld the
two into
the life she wants? You

guess she will
leave to find what she
needs, needs what to find
in something more true
than what she’s

used to. Everyone
finds home, but
not everyone’s home can remain
the same. You
want to jump in and

swim this strong
inviting current until
paths diverge
in a blue sky, one
direction: out, not

in space, but forever in
spirit. This
is your connection
note. Fly away now.


Six floors up is not high enough to give this would-be jumper
relief from a hell of his own making. Once again she boils at
his personality. Friends are no longer enough relief, outpouring
of art is also not enough. Clam bush leaves coax, one recycler in
blue hesitates, drops plastic into plastic. Jumper’s had enough.
This building is fifteen, so a slow ride up nine, stair walk to roof,
and he’d be toast. Everyone would cry longer than they’d read his
poems, so he turns, waits, embraces some other way; it’s not
enough, and because he knows it is his fault that some other
was is not enough, he contemplates a two-step one point five meter
high-jump over retraining wall. It may only result in a second
broken neck, rock solid paralysis, no more baseball with his
son, his son, his son, the only reasonable person left, since his
personality ruined her, and her reaction to it ruined him, and
that was half a decade ago. Is this funny anymore? Well it has
caused a genuine gut laugh at Lonnie Lotte last night, so laugh on
you imbecile. You still can’t get this place right, your still expected
to change. You still want more than you can have, you still waste
time chasing love, when there is none. It’s you ace. It’s not that there
is no love, it’s that you are a child, on who is impossible to be loved.

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