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Here are some of my efforts at using rhyme to tell a story or express a feeling.
Click a rhyme below. Click "BACK" on your browser or Go To Top to return here.

Our Morning Star      How Many Lives       Love's Grand Plan       New ways to say "I love you"
Fighting 52       Bonefish Serenade       Macabi Lodge       Abaco Angling      South Andros

Our Morning Star

[One morning as I watched the morning star, Venus, fade and the sun rise up to take its place, I realized the sun is our special morning star, without which we wouldn't even exist.]

The sun is just another morning star
Like many others shining from afar
It sets my mind askew to contemplate
What other beings live within this starry spate

A faithful servant with its warming rays
To slay the night and light our precious days
A beacon in the blackest void of space
It cheers us and sustains our meager race

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How Many Lives

How many lives do you think we get?
We have but one brief chance to live.
Don't let yourself age and nurse regret
While losing your time through a sieve.

Don't pile up a single future day
On the heap of days long past.
Don't squander precious time away.
Believe me it is your last.

Whether you now are young or old
Donít drown in your cares and woes
Treat every day like precious gold
This lesson's apropos

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[When my daughter had been married for several years and had not yet produced a grandchild for us, I wrote this little plea for her to do her part in love's grand plan.  She now has two fine boys and, with our other grandchildren, we now have 10!]

One night in March of '65 your mom's eyes flashed that way
That made my love just spring alive.  It does still to this day.
Though now it's just a hug or kiss and sometimes slightly more.
In early years we wouldn't miss a chance to let love soar.

Expressing it in such a way that fits the Lord's grand plan.
So that new life can spring from clay that's how your life began.
Conceived in love you came to us a gift from God on high.
And ever since our lives you thus enrich and magnify.

From little girl with puffy sleeves to teenage miss in skirts.
Those years flew by like autumn leaves so swift it sometimes hurts.
Now that you're married to a man we know that you adore.
Your love for him may aid God's plan like ours did once before.

No matter whether girl or boy you'll love it as we you.
For children bring us love and joy and sometimes heartache too.
But all in all it's worth the dare for without children can
You not contribute your fair share to love's immortal plan.

                                                        with love, Dad

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New ways to say "I love you"

[This was a little Valentine poem to my wife in 1995]

"I love you" sounds so trite these days
There must be other, better ways
"Ti amo" and "J't'aime" won't do
"Ich liebe Dich" is hackneyed too

So I would like to be unique
And say it with a new technique
Comparing how I feel towards you
With other things that I love too

Like clouds that hurry 'cross the sky
Or trout that rise up to a fly
A soft and cuddly pussycat
A tailing bonefish on a flat

A shooting star but briefly seen
A Christmas tree that's tall and green
Or children playing hide and seek
A gentle kiss upon my cheek

A perfect drive that's straight and long
When all your friends are looking on
A golf ball falling in the cup
To put you now just one stroke up

The heady smell of baking bread
A warm and comfy feather bed
The velvet taste of fine old wine
And gourmet food on which to dine

The music of a rushing brook
Or curling up with a good book
Fresh coffee steaming in a mug
A belly laugh, a good warm hug

The tender sounds of Gershwin tunes
The whimsy art of sandy dunes
A balmy Caribbean isle
A baby's first uncertain smile

The feel of cooling summer breeze
Or sparkling frost on frozen trees
An infant's happy gurgling sound
A long-lost treasure newly found

A stately buck or graceful doe
A crocus peeking through the snow
A noble oak or hemlock tree
Like you, these things are dear to me

                                          with love, Valentine's Day - 1995

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Fighting 52

[I couldn't find an appropriate birthday card for my wife's 51'st birthday.  So I wrote this little ditty on a blank card that had some cute bunnies on it.  This I call cutting edge poetry.]

Dear Wife

You'll wonder why I took the time
To write another silly rhyme.
'Twas 'cause the other cards just stank
That I bought this one, it was blank.
(Besides, I really liked the bunnies)-->

So here I sit and ponder words
To use when so I am bestirred
Expressing thoughts that should be said
I thought I'd write a poem instead.
(I hope it's better than the funnies)

With one and fifty years to count
It's harder to find cause to flaunt.
Don't think your lover's interest wanes
He also loves you for your brains.
(I think I'll take another tack)-->

Don't worry if your figure sags,
And here and there you have some bags
I say this with no tongue in cheek.
My figure's also less than Greek.
(Uh-oh, I'm in a cul-de-sac)

Let's see if I can save some face
I wrote in ink, it won't erase.
The problem is, it takes some time
To keep from tripping on my rhyme.
(Let's see if I can end this thing)-->


I guess that what I want to say
Is that I will not go astray.
We'll work together, me and you
To help you fight off fifty two.
(Did those last lines take out the sting?)

                                                     with unwaning love, Your Husband

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The Bonefish Serenade

[This rambling tale was my very first effort at telling a story in rhyme.  It was written in early 1991 after my first bonefishing trip, to Belize, with an old Army buddy of mine.]

We'd heard these tales of southern seas, a flyrod challenge in Belize.
So with our rods and reels and hats we set off south to Turneffe Flats.
We journeyed there, my friend and I, to bask in sun and sea and sky.
To wade the flats up to our hips and taste salt spray upon our lips.

We stalked the ghostly bonefish pods and shot at them with graceful rods.
Our brightly colored lines would swish out gracefully to seek the fish.
With wind there always, reef to beach, the bones seem always out of reach.
The only way to score at all is with a well-placed double haul.

You strip the line with short swift tugs and feel a satisfying nudge.
Take up the slack and point the tip, don't yank too hard, you'll rip his lip.
Now raise the rod and tend the line. Don't pinch too hard or get entwined.
You've got to get him on the reel to hear that much-awaited peal.

With rod raised high and steeply bent, your reel becomes his instrument.
No sweeter tune has ere been played than this the bonefish serenade.
His song is that of freedom gone and gallant efforts to live on.
A desperate struggle to survive, he'll fight 'till death to stay alive.

He doesn't know you mean no harm.  His every fiber screams alarm.
If only you could tell this fish that you, like he, have just one wish.
To live in freedom just like he, and shed your cares and feel you're free.
To make the most of your brief stay on God's green earth you dearly pray.

When finally he comes to hand, no more of him will you demand.
Just relish his quicksilver flanks and give him much deserved thanks.
Release him now to ocean blue, for he has done his part for you.
To live your tiny slice of time and help you put it all to rhyme.

                                                                                            WLN 1991

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Macabi Lodge - Los Roques Venezuela

[My fishing buddy and I are always looking for a new place to go bonefishing.  In 1993 we journeyed to a small fishing village on the island of Los Roques, about 100 miles off the coast of Venezuela.  We met some interesting people from around the U.S. and had lots of laughs along with good fishing and great food.  This rambling rhyme is a remembrance .]

From way up North the anglers came
To play their bonefish fly rod game
To stalk the flats mile after mile
'Round Chapi Lodge on Gran Roque Isle->

They'd heard of giant bonefish there
With endless flats and weather fair
So down they came to fish and play
From all around the USA

Big Fred and Dave and Duncan too
From Californ-i-a they flew
Though David's gear was lost en route
It didn't dampen their pursuit->

From Boston, Mass came feisty Rick
We all enjoyed his rhetoric
His angling friend Miami Bill
Threw double hauls that gave a thrill

And from St. Lou did Gary come
Plus Bill from Pittsburgh, his old chum
These two were former Army pals
Who drove fast cars and chased fast gals->

Just two old rogues from way back when
When gals were gals and men were men
Now they're content with tamer ways
They fish and dream of bygone days

And last, not least, from Idaho
Came Vern and Margaret from the snow
To bask in sun and sea and foam
Throughout the world did these two roam->

Each member of this motley crew
Had come here just to rendezvous
With boundless flats and big bonefish
To rest, relax, fulfill a wish

And so each morn' the bell would ring
To summon them to do their thing
They staggered from their rooms half nude
A hearty breakfast then ensued->

With Alex, Walter or Josť
The fisherman would start their day
The married folks from Idaho
Went fishing with Antonio

They loaded boats with food and beer
And much expensive fishing gear
With red bandanas 'round their throats
They headed out in leaky boats->

Resplendent in their Tarpon Wear
With warm wind blowing through their hair
They sought some hidden bonefish flat
They cared not where the place was at

They checked their crazy charlie flies
With hopes they'd catch a bonefish prize
They donned their boots and fancy garb
Remembering to pinch the barb->

With Polaroids and long-billed hats
And graceful rods, they stalk the flats
Through blazing sun the anglers squint
To find some nervous water hint

They search for any flash of tails
And pray for bonefish big as whales
Then finally the anglers see
Some movement by a mangrove tree->

At first it's just a ghostly trace
A shadow 'neath the water's face
A closer look reveals the fact
That is indeed a bonefish pack

So stealthily the anglers creep
In water only ankle deep
To sneak a little closer still
And get within their casting skill->

You slip around the upwind side
And try to gauge the shifting tide
Your line gets tangled under foot
You cuss and hope the fish stay put

The wind is blowing like a squall
You'll need a well-placed double haul
The cast will have to be exact
To keep the school still well intact->

You know the angler's golden rule
Don't line the fish and spook the school
To do that now would be taboo
Your buddy wants to catch one too

So finally you make the cast
And hope the fly won't go on past
But no, it lands exactly right
A bonefish sees your fly alight->

You kneel down low and grip the rod
He's following your fly by God
You tell yourself to get a grip
Just point the rod and start to strip

You feel the line get awfully tight
And hope you're in for quite a fight
Just like you read in Lefty's book
You yank the line and set the hook->

Your line gets taut, your rod bends deep
The giant bonefish takes a leap
Your line is flying here and there
You watch it with a silent prayer

When finally he's on the reel
You hear that much-awaited peal
The fish is taking line like hell
Your guide, Josť, lets out a yell->

Your pal, too, shouts encouragement
As if you weren't quite competent
Your fish is on a lengthy run
And you are having loads of fun

So when at last you land your prize
Is when you start to realize
That finally you got your wish
You caught a thousand dollar fish->

But not all days go just as planned
Sometimes it just gets out of hand
Like when the mud's up to your hips
And ugly words are on your lips

With sharks and 'cudas' lurking 'round
And not a bonefish to be found
Fatigue runs right down to your feet
And poor old Alex takes the heat->

But all in all the day is great
And all the anglers congregate
They stow their fly rods in the boat
And hope the damned thing stays afloat

So with a final backward look
And wondering what the chef will cook
As sea birds dive into the bay
They thank God for a splendid day->

That evening sitting on the sand
A Cuba Libra well in hand
As golden sun begins to dip
They're planning next year's fishing trip

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Abaco Angling

[In 1994, my buddy and I traveled to Abaco Island in the Bahamas in pursuit of the mighty bonefish.  The accommodations were great and the bonefishing wasn't all that bad either.  However, the lady who owned and ran the place (with an iron hand), was not really  in tune with the needs and desires of the anglers and she usually got the lunches mixed up.  I guess you had to be there to appreciate the humor in this rhyme.]

One cold winter's day I decided to stop
At the International Angler shop
I was looking for fun and a warm place to go
When I heard of an island called Abaco

They claimed that the Marls were all virgin ground
Where the sun always shines and dumb bonefish abound
So without too much further thought or ado
I packed up my rods and booked myself through

To share in the fun an old pal of mine came
From St. Louis to share in this flyrodding game
Oh what a great venture for me and my chum
To fish the Bahamas and drink local rum

At the Abaco Bonefishing Club by the sea
We were greeted by Gina with cups of Bush Tea
Our hostess was Nettie, an entrepreneur
At verbalization no mere amateur

The lodge and the hotel were nearly first class
The doors had no latches, the windows no glass
No-see-ums could enter through cracks in the floor
The roaches so big came right in through the door

But all of these things are of little import
When you're on a vacation it adds to the sport
The fun is enhanced when the other guests too
Can share in the fun and the humor with you

Each morning while eating our bacon and eggs
The insects would feast on our ankles and legs
The gang would then squeeze in to Nettie's old van
And wait while the staff all agreed on a plan

When all was in order eventually
The van and the truck rattled down to the sea
With visions of bonefishing filling my head
Down the long brutal road all the fishermen sped

The boats were all ready with motors and poles
To help us negotiate shallows and shoals
At high tide we sped off with nary a hitch
From the beach to the flats via Nettie's big ditch

Now Jimmy our guide was the best of the lot
The bonefish he found us were hefty and hot
We'd cast to the fish on the left and the right
And double our hookups to his great delight

Of all of our offerings the Gotcha worked best
We learned to strip-strip and then let it rest
The fish were aggressive and not at all shy
They would turn on their heels to chase after the fly

And so the days went with occasional lulls
When we'd gaze at the egrets and stare at the gulls
At lunchtime we'd rest in a nice placid lee
And try to decipher Jim's brand of Cockney

The ride back to port was exciting indeed
With no time to spare Jimmy poured on the speed
The punishing waves jarred our kidneys and hearts
Not to mention our rods and more sensitive parts

The channel that Nettie had dug through the mud
Was fine in the morning with tide near the flood
But low tide gave not enough water to float
So we all have to get out and push in the boat

You had to stop fishing just when it was prime
To get to the beach the appropriate time
But then when you got there to your great regret
The guy with the van hadn't gotten there yet

Each evening the anglers would sit at the bar
Conducting a bonefishing seminar
While some of them grumbled some other would mutter
"I asked for baloney and got peanut butter"

                                                                                            WLN 1994

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South Andros Bonefish Lodge

[This next little story in rhyme is about a wonderful little bonefish lodge on South Andros Island in the Bahamas.  It was started by a first rate fishing guide from Montana and a charming gal from Houston Texas.  Their lodge was a cozy hacienda nestled in the mangroves only 100 yards from the beach.  The experience there was more than just good fishing and great food.   It was also warm, unfettered  hospitality in a very laid back setting.   Unfortunately, the place is no more.  After only two yearly visits to this Caribbean paradise, the place burned down and the host and hostess, having lost most of their belongings, returned to the U.S.]

Sweet Laura said to come on down.   Just catch a plane to Congo Town.
And Don said with no tongue in cheek, "I'll find you fish in every creek".
A bonefish paradise they said.  With native foods and comfy bed.
Where double-digit bones abound and not another soul's around.

So Gary, from St. Louis, came.  Bonefishing was his favorite game.
And Bill from Pittsburgh, his old pal said "That would surely lift morale".
They said this really sounds like fun.  It's time we got a little sun.
The rum is surely good and cheap.  We'll fish and swim and eat and sleep.

Two others guests came to the lodge.  A guy from Dallas known as Rog
And Carolina sent old Bill who counted fish to measure skill.
With Terrence, Don and 'Heavy' guiding and Laura evenings well presiding
The anglers got their every wish, good food, free drinks and lots of fish

On Grassy, Deep and Little Creek the angling really was unique.
A thousand fish in frenzied flight and not a one would stop to bite.
One day when Bill and Gary kayaked 'twas clear to all the skills they lacked.
They paddled well, both to and fro but never knew which way they'd go.

Now Roger always fished in shorts, like all cool Caribbean sports.
A self-made man, laid back and loose, he wore a red homemade burnoose.
Old Bill was nearly in his heaven.  His daily mean was nine point seven.
To rise above mere mortal men, he strove to get that magic "ten".

Around the lodge and in the boats, old Bill would tell his anecdotes.
A different yarn 'round every bend, it seemed his tales would never end.
Old Heavy with his line in hand, would wade and search across the sand.
And if a Barrie swam on past, make no mistake, it was his last.

The bait would fly out fast and far.  The fish would strike a mighty jar.
Then Heavy dragged him on the beach to smash his skull and break his teeth.
With sea and sand and fish galore and always new creeks to explore
We whiled away those happy days pursuing our dear bonefish craze.

The evenings there were always great, with Don and Laura, his first mate.
We'd sit and talk and settle nerves while munching gobs of great hors d'oeuvres.
We came again the following year without old Bill to chew our ear.
'Twas even better than before, great fun and bonefish by the score.

But that was back in ninety six, our last year there to get our kicks.
We didn't know 'twould be our last, to fade away into the past.
But even though we can't return, we don't just sob and long and yearn
Life's far too short to hear our cries.  Too many bonefish await our flies.

                                                                                                                    WLN 1997

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