Saturday, December 20, 2014

Slap Jack

A friend told me she'd read somewhere Obama wants to tax.
When I got mad, she poked at me and said those were the facts.
So I watched Fox enough to see the furor in Sean’s eyes.
He smoked and steamed, pulled out his hair, said no to compromise.

To tax it seems a novel thing, a surcharge on all cats,
The hairless breeds, and Siamese, old, blind with cataracts.
Seems cats produce a carbon load and have to pay for it.
How to collect from catamounts not easy they admit.

Cats won't pause for any clause requiring a levy.
They have no coin, no currency, and wallets are too heavy.
I’ll have to pay in a few days not only for my living.
For my fat cat I’ve named Slap Jack, I also will be giving.

           April 10, 2010

Monday, August 04, 2014

First Kissing Warm Rain

Soft is the night
yellow misty in the throw-glow
of streetlights.

In the hour of time stops
we walk between sidewalks.

In our hands, the sound of
eucalyptus and front yard flower beds
dripping warm maple

Noh-traffic tattoo
footsteps and fingerprint cartwheels
in the middle of the street.

Where I lost myself, leaning back
on every tree I will ever touch
after this feels like
first kissing warm rain.

For my Inamorata Sighs

Sunday, July 27, 2014

from The Book of Mary Grace

Now that field is full of houses,
where the flowers were
is gone.
The wind is blowing
from the past…
Blonde on blonde hair
in the air
carries abalone shell
rainbow laughter.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Speaking With Dragon

    speaking with Dragon

      "The ocean is still missing," he said.

  I had trouble understanding,
   it didn't make sense,
   missing, how could an ocean

         be missing?

        I opened the map...
       right where the ocean should be.

      There was a note that said,

     "U can'T gEt theRe froM hErE."



       "... he don't live here no more."

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Seven Shades of Blue

I knew seven shades of blue
when I met you.
No other colors were coming through.
You introduced me to my heart
and claimed you were my counterpart.

Seasons changed and so did I.
Where you lived behind my eyes
poems seemed to multiply.
A strange, smeared palette, a waxing world,
and the pillowed comfort of the perfect girl.

When I could no longer touch the ground
or follow warm small thoughts around,
you cried to me with silver sounds.
But busy with a life on stage
I lived inside my velvet cage.

Then stumbled to my knees and
wailed, lost all will, all reason.
Love can be such a cruel season.
Hard to hold like water in the hand,
a xeriscape of affection I never planned.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Geneva Awaits The Morning

She had heard rumors about tomorrow.
This time she swore to believe them.

In the past the future had let her down.
What began with starry promises
turned into stony, lovesick afternoons
and endless evenings caught dreaming
in someone else’s back room.

Something about midnight’s echo
convinced Geneva a different dawn was in place.
If a new day could be unwrapped,
opened with the sun,
no fragile enemies would hear.

First light promised to heal the hollow places
where sadness traces appear.

So now…
Geneva awaits the morning.

Monday, July 14, 2014


After rhyme declined in ‘99 
I began to weigh my words. 
Rather than timing the rhyming, literally, 
I found sound has an affinity 
for a much larger harmony. 
A word's weight is different than the   
sound of the thing. 

Some words echo when not said out loud 
Some words rise like mist off the page 
Some words cannot walk alone 
Some words act differently 
Some words find old souls 
Some words can swim 
Some words are for the future found 
Some words were never there 
Some words have music in them 
Some words without a sound 
Some words are misunderstood 
Some words will never be forgiven 
Some words cannot be taken back 
Some words fit perfectly 
Some words are poetry 
Now, many people believe that
something new cannot be true. 
Old ways are the only ways for them. 
But, look around, things have changed, 
and there is no going back.

Used to be, the shortest distance 
between two points was a line. 
Now, it turns out the shortest distance 
between two points is a fold in space. 
So I shall look where I am going,
weigh my words, and describe it. 
The future I am living in requires
new phrases that will become clichés,
not old clichés that will become phrases. 

Monday, June 30, 2014

I Brought Flowers

I brought flowers 
to an argument 
last night. 

Something about their beauty 
settled the dispute. 

Just like geese echo 
cutting to the truth, 
I knew this would not be 
the last incident. 

Next time, I'll bring 
a poem.     

Friday, June 27, 2014

It Began To Snow

It began to snow, erasing the horizon. 
A wedge of geese faded in and out, 
a drifting channel on some rustic television. 

The creek crackled with cold where 
the current wasn't. 
Flakes fluttered like moths, 
then melted where they touched me. 

The history of flowers' future lay buried 
where I rested. 

Exhaling the breath of others, 
I tasted them in me, 
watching, with eyes closed, 
nature unfold. 

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Quantum Poetry

Poetry into
the eleventh dimension
does not rely upon the rules
of any one universe.
Quantum poetry,
by its very nature changes
what it describes.
Why not challenge
comfortable understandings?
Somewhere else we are
surely inspired right now
by things that mean nothing
to us here.

I Don't Agree (With Myself)

I do not accept this condition.
I seek harmony inside my skin
yet find plenty with which to disagree.

I don’t get along with language.
At love with the sound of the word,
more than the meaning of the word,
an argument can start here.

And can’t the alphabet do without
the letter K
on my ceyboard?

Ugh! The sound of fury
fits perfectly here.

As I most esteem native cross talkers
and current thought riders,
please, tell me you don't agree.

If I can't agree with myself

Then, why should you.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Saturday, April 26, 2014


Barefoot in shorts, and
A straw cowboy hat --
A night vision to behold.
At a loss for words
I avoid people and the uncertainty
That speaking to them brings.
I spend the night with other animals,
With birds, box turtles, and buffalo
                                    Walking and stopping.
                                    Not thinking, but listening…
And the mynah birds say
                                    Everything is sacred.
And the buffalo say
Everything is sacred,
That is the first truth.
And a turtle pipes up,
This truth is sacred
Listen, they all say
Can you hear it
Listen, listen,
Then you tell me
If everything is sacred
                                    So I stop
                                                And I listen…
                                                I hear it
                                                Yes, I hear it
                                                I hear the truth.
The first truth.

                                                Everything is sacred.

Click here to listen to: SACRED - Spoken Word on SoundCloud.

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Tears For You

I’m caught up in a joke, the one I love just turned to smoke.
You’re stuck out on a limb, ‘cause I know you don’t love him.
Every other night, you and him just fuss and fight.
It’s such a waste of time, and I always end up crying

Tears for you / Tears for you
                                    Tears for you / Tears for you

Either way we’ll learn. Either way our hearts will burn.
Then the tide will turn, we’ll forget what we have learned.
Just remember this… don’t forget the way we kissed.
Don’t forget my love; just remember there’s no other…

                                    Tears for you / Tears for you
                                    Tears for you / Tears for you

You think you’ve got a choice… it doesn’t really work like that.
It’s just a bunch of noise. There’s no rabbit in my hat.
Really no surprise, we’re better off without those lies.
Let’s give it one more chance. I promise you that I won’t cry…

                                    Tears for you / Tears for you
                                    Tears for you / Tears for you

© James Lick/Jimmy the Peach. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, March 02, 2014

August Song

August Song   

After August songs

Pelicans play on Chesapeake Bay

Still swing swinging with

Finger snappin'

Foot tappin'

Thigh slappin'

Belly laughin'

Keepin' time

Rhythm and rhyme

Solitary driven by offshore winds

Riding the escalator at Macy's 

Once I lost my mother in ZCMI

Like a munchkin on a cattle drive

When something startles the picket

Of hobbled horses 

after August sets

out west the evening



reflections of

the moon

After August songs

Each verse a little cooler than yesterday

August 18, 2012 at 2:56am

Thursday, February 27, 2014

A Bundle Of Baby

     Flew into Vegas Tuesday night. At 8:30pm it was 68 degrees with a breeze. When I left Virginia it had just stopped snowing.   
     We had lived here for nine years so we drove up the Strip last night to see what had changed.   
     Some new casinos and condo towers. But, what caught my attention were the people.   
     I had forgotten how shit-face drunk the tourists get by sunset.   
     Staggering amongst friends and strangers, they crossed the street around us, then careened in sloppy curves, north and south, onto the snake skin sidewalks that never empty, twenty-four hours a day.   
     We left the Strip at Sahara and headed east towards Sunrise Mountain, driving towards little Elliott Robert Cheal, the two week old grandson we had come here to hold.   
          in my arms   
          a bundle of baby   
          smiling tears   


Such a need
to talk
to listen
to look 
into someone's
eyes looking

Such a need
to touch
be touched
warm breath
my neck
and yours

Such a need
slow walk
sun sets
to whisper 
to lean
planting flowers

Such a need
to laugh
to stare
in bed
you said
I said

Such a need
to quench
a thirst
I never
ever knew
I had

Such a need
a secret
short hand
in public
a parade
a similitude

such a need
such a need
such a need
such a need
such a need
such a need

such a need
such a need
such a need
such a need
to be
not alone

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A Man Of Few Words

A man of few words   
     I repeat myself

A man of few words
     I repeat myself

Thursday, January 30, 2014

She's Playing A Dulcimer

Long into the darkness,
this record scratching
and popping like music
used to do, we lay
back on the bed.

Instead of the
cottage cheese ceiling
that hid what,
 I could only imagine,
we would close our eyes
and see…
green fountains
with the rarest,
most precious,

 “She’s playing a dulcimer,” my sister would say.

And then…
we would
make the mistake,
of opening
our                                                                                         eyes.