Apr 3, 2014

Impossibly Good News

Seven million sign ups
Ain’t that swell
Baghdad Bob is alive and well

He changed his name
For just one Day
From Baghdad Bob to D.C. Jay

The ranks of the uninsured have shrunk
We met the target; Who’d a thunk

Just last week
We had no clue
Now it’s seven million
Sixty-seven thousand
And thirty-two
(Who knew?)

In other news
Even more surprising
The world’s at peace and the seas stopped rising
We’ve entered an era
Of great good felling
The weapons were surrendered and the planet’s healing

All the bad guys just left town
And the unemployment rate went down

Merkel may be playing hard to get
But our role with Russia has been re-set
Putin’s plans have all been thwarted
And looked at all the people that we’ve deported

All is joy and peace and love
Everything’s been gotten to the bottom of

Sun’s in the sky
And the sky ain’t fallin’
Osama’s dead
And GM’s…recallin

I’ve met or exceeded all my goals
Now why don’t we go play eighteen holes.
Last time I played..ain’t it a wonder
You might not believe it but I shot six under.


Reporters all like brouhahas
They sure are lots of fun
You don’t know what’s a brouhaha
Well, Watergate was one

Bridgegate is another
And those cable guys pursue it
Asking ol’ Chris Christie
What he knew and when he knew it
It’s as if every anchor
There on M S N B C
Lives or has a cousin
Stuck in traffic in Ft. Lee

It’s what across the nation
All the media enjoy
Except for in Hawaii
Where they call them brou ha hoi

The Russian word for brouhaha
I just don’t want to try
I know that in Jerusalem
They call them HAZARAI

The problem with a brouhaha
You never know when stuff’ll
Blow up from a (you know what)
Into a real kerfuffle

You issue a denial
Your spokesman shouts and stomps
And what was a kerfuffle’s
Now a full blown contre temps
Today’s administration
They sure have had their share
Of fracases, to-dos and rows
As you might be aware

A tumult and a hub bub
Lesser powers might defeat
But far beyond the notice
Of the media elite

The strategy they’ve seized upon
Like none that came before it
Presented with a crisis
Quite simply, they ignore it.

Mar 21, 2014


The lessons that I’ve learned in life
I summarize this way
You learn most from what people do
And not from what they say.

If you have pride in where you’re from
And don’t have soap to sell
You won’t object to wearing
A small flag on your lapel

You’d know you govern by the law
And not through rules and orders
That countries have their interests
Their traditions and their borders
I speak of one such country
Whose name by now you’ve guessed
Whose people and whose borders lie
Between the East and West

Not so very long ago
With warheads laid in stacks
They gave up all their weapons
‘Cause we said we had their backs

And when the Ukraine asked for help
They thought we would deliver
But when a push became a shove
We sold them down the river
A doctrine of diplomacy
That Kerry rarely mentions
You can’t cement alliances
With only good intentions

Around the world
The USA most surely has detractors.
Though looking at it carefully
They mostly are bad actors.

And if we leave our allies twist
For all the world to see
Among the bad-est actors
Is just what we will be.

Mar 6, 2014


I’d like to see at CPAC
A man or woman proudly
Address the delegation
And hear them cheering loudly

I’d like to see a leader
(Where have they gone and whence?)
With common touch like Christie
But much more common sense.

I’d like to see at CPAC
While in this mess we’re mired
A man whose best quotation
Isn’t, “Hey, you’re fired!”

A hotshot from the Congress
Whose budget brilliance smolders
But doesn’t put the burden
On Master Sergeant’s shoulders

A young gun from the Senate
With right and able reasoning
But given current data
Perhaps with some more seasoning

I’d like to see at CPAC
I don’t know his or her name
But kindly give us someone
Without the same old surname
A star to stir the nation
Whose every word and letter
Persuades our doubting spirits
That WE can make things better

Feb 14, 2014

A Valentine Poem

You must have heard this one before
And if you have, don’t laugh
We spend our lifetimes looking for
Our other, better half

Some say, for every man
This is a neverending journey
And if you’re in agreement
May I suggest a good attorney?

Others say the soulmate
Is a metaphor or myth
And likewise, their advice
Is that you love the one you’re with

We all know how it feels
When someone tears our heart to tatters
For seeking, lost or gained
Love is the only thing that matters

Solitude is life
Lived on a road that only narrows
And you have known no joy
Without the pain of Cupid’s arrows

For love, I’ve left my fate and fortune
Fall into neglect
But seeing I’m a poet, fellas
What would you expect?

So if you need a Valentine
Or think you wouldn’t mind one
Log on to e-Harmony for heaven’s sakes
And find one.

Jan 24, 2014

I Can't Go Home Again

I’m gonna tell you something
Just a few of you might know
I come from New York City
Though I’m called Tarzana Joe

I learned to ride the subway
When a token cost a quarter
I love the smell of sidewalks
And the taste of Catskill water

I’m friendly and outgoing
With a healthy fear of strangers
I like the Mets and Yankees
Giants, Jets and New York Rangers

I hoped I might revisit
Where I’ve lived and loved before
But according to the governor
I ain’t welcome there no more

He’s forced me out of Flatbush
And he’s banned me from Bay Ridge
That’s assuming that Chris Christie
Even lets me cross the bridge

There’s no room for my business
And I can’t root for my team
‘Cause my views are non-conforming
And my ideas—too extreme

Though we both grew up as Catholics
I imagine and suppose he
Learned his catechism
From a teacher named Pelosi

Rare and safe and legal
That’s how they say it should be
And they think that they’re successful
When they failed two out of three

I’d love a nice vacation
Central Park is worth a stroll
But all things being equal
I’d prefer to keep my soul

Yes, I’m sticking to my guns here
High water, friend, or hell come
And hope the Pearly Gates
Will be a place where I’ll be welcome

Jan 17, 2014

The Ballad of Omnibus Bill

You must have heard and should recall
Of “robbing Peter to pay Paul”
Which means, for Pittsburg Steeler fans,
That money, while it changes hands
Makes a move that doesn’t matter
Burns the former, cheats the latter
But worse, on the Absurd-o-meter
Is robbing Peter to pay Peter
Which by a vote of two-to-one
Is what our government has done
It strikes me as the height of pettiness
To charge a grunt for his own readiness
To bill a flyer for his fuel
To dock a sailor for his gruel
And do it without one mis-giving
I guess that’s just the cost of living.

Forgive me if I’m mis-construing
But could this be Paul Ryan’s doing?
It seems to me the pundits said
He was the sharpest in the shed
I guess it’s time that I re-rate him
He let Joe Biden out-debate him
And now, with his entire staff
Appears too clever here, by half
We’ve cut your pay, but have no fears
We put it off for two more years
It’s just part of the D.C. dance
We’ll fix it…if we get the chance
And what about this Rogers guy
So proud of all that he put by
The architect, perhaps the artisan
Twelve hundred pages of bi-partisan
A treasure trove of gives and gets
But give-backs from retired vets
Friend, when you reach across the aisle
You often step in quite a pile
I don’t know much, but what I knows is
Something smells…and it sure ain’t roses

Nov 8, 2013

It Goes Without Saying

What we have is so fantastic
All we really need is branding
As to what was said or promised
There was some misunderstanding

Well, you may have thought you heard it
And you might think that you read it
But allow me to assure you
I never ever said it

And if somebody here wrote it
Then we all told him to spike it
I never ever spoke it
Or any sentence like it

I’ve a ready gift for language
And sometimes get rather glib
But I never made a promise
Or at worst, it’s just a fib

What I tell you in the future
You can certify and bond it
As to what I said beforehand
I suggest you get beyond it

There are some of you who get it
As I always knew you would
We use any means we have to
To achieve a greater good

And the message that’s essential
Deep in every word I’ve spoken
In the making of an omelet
There are eggs that must be broken

So from here on, no more surprises
Since I promise and decree it
Now that sort of should assure you
And I kind of guarantee it.

Nov 6, 2013

In the Aftermath

We need more men like them
We need more women too
Who in a time of crisis
Do what we all should do
I listen to the host
And think it can’t be true
The people that we lost
Were people that we knew

The man who taught at church
Or shoveled out your walk
The lady at the corner
Who just loved to stop and talk

That woman from IT
Who also did some clerk-ing
The guy who really loved his work
And never did stop working

I only want a hint
Or peek into The Plan
Oh, why is it so hard to be
A Boston Bruins fan?

The crimes against our friends
Are numerous and mounting
Where will we find another soul
So good at bluebird counting

And thinking of his children
I don’t think I can take it
It’s like I got the phone call
Saying, “Marty didn’t make it.”

And then our teacher Mike
Why did he have to die
Remember him whenever
Someone hollers “Semper Fi”

Well, now I’m off to work
I’ll see you both tonight
Before I go please hold me
Hold me Hold me tight.

Oct 18, 2013

I Love Smokey Bear

Some say the spirit lingers
And its impact never ends
Provided that it’s cherished
In the memory of friends

The first thing that the maintenance of memories is good for
We keep alive the principles the dear departed stood for

He set a fine example
For our children everywhere
He showed how great disasters
Are prevented with great care

How what we count as precious
Are a set of basic rules
And much can be accomplished
With a set of simple tools

But now I fear his legacy
Is lost and left behind
The evidence of influence
Is thin and hard to find

And those who should be loyal
To his work and his advices
Seem to have abandoned him
In this the present crisis

In fact they seem to take
Almost opposite perspectives
And claim, when they are challenged
“We’re just following directives.”
From a group whose mascot
Preached a basic self-reliance
Confronted with vindictiveness
I hoped for some defiance

If he could see his Ranger Ricks
Behaving in this way
I just can’t help but wondering
What would Smokey Say?

I guess it’s up to us
To frame his legacy in stars
Recalling that he said
Responsibility is ours

So when you hear the spin
That comes from followers and liars
Government  overreach
Massive regulation
Constitutional ignorance

Oct 4, 2013

As Said by Hugh Hewitt

Hugh Hewitt, on the government
This bit of wisdom spun
That which it does, you don’t miss much
The rest, it can’t get done

Despite the crisis and the wars
The government has shut its doors
For Washington’s elite and brightest
Don’t have a clue, no, not the slightest

Yes, this might mean a bit of trouble
For those inside the beltway bubble
Who’s going to tell those guys the news
They’ll have to shine their own damn shoes

And even the most skilled debater
Must learn to work the elevator
Those White House staffers, flaks and pets
Are locked out just like World War vets

The threat to Fed employees sure could elevate and widen
When we wise up that most are as essential as Joe Biden

So March! Protest! And raise the fuss.
The Tea Party’s done this to us
Until those guys are put to rout
Look what we have to do without

No crazy schemes and regulation
No brand new reams of legislation
No new decrees by any czar
No listening to N.P.R.

No one will be twisting bolts
On any brand new Chevy volts
And here’s a set back worth repeating
The First Lady won’t be tweeting

So many hardships I could cry

Let’s try

Sep 27, 2013

Green Jobs and Spam

I do not like Obamacare

Obamacare is what we need
Says Harry Reid, “You'd love it if you had the facts
Even with that stupid tax.
You will like it here and there
You will love Obamacare.”

"Would you like it for your lung?
Would you like it for your tongue?”

Not for my lung
Not for my tongue
I do not like it here or there
I do not want Obamacare

"Would you use it for your guts?
Would you use it for your cuts?"

Not for my guts
Not for my cuts
Harry Reid you drive me nuts

"Would you just, for this and that
Would you use it for your cat?"

For my cat?
Not even that!
Not for my lung not for my tongue
Not for my cuts not for my guts
I would not use it here or there
I do not like Obamacare
This is program we don’t need
I do not like you, Harry Reid

"You do not like it
So you say
So how about a brief delay?"
A brief delay
The heck you say

"And if, somehow, you curry favor
We can offer you a waiver"

But if it’s great, the way you say it
Hope can you want us to delay it?

"Why, with so many dis-affected
None of my friends get re-elected."
Oh, Harry Reid you are so clever
Why don’t we put it off…forever?

Sep 13, 2013

Ship of State?

Sail on thou ship of state sail on...
It seems to me you're drifting
Perhaps there's no one left on board
To do the heavy lifting
And if that ship of state breaks down
We’d better get a loan-er
Or else they’ll need to find someone
To play the part of Jonah
Alas, this mighty ship of state
Has proven to be crew-less
I guess, of course, that's apropos
Because the captain's clueless

Seeing likely outcomes
They know his course is reckless
And spotting not a single "feck"
Know likewise that it's feckless

But if you don’t agree then tell me why
The world is willin’
To put their trust in someone
Who resembles a Bond Villain?

And yet the fate of millions
Before we count to ten
Rests upon the efforts
And the skills of these two men

Can they get all this organized
And manage to agree
When one man ran communities
And one the K.G.B.?

Still, I remain an optimist
And I retain my hope
But in this situation
I’m counting on the Pope

Sep 7, 2013

Breakfast of Doubt

A question has been plaguing me
So much, I can’t ignore it
Do I oppose “whatever”
Just because Obama’s for it?

I struggle with my attitude
And strive for self-awareness
Because I know my President
Deserves a little fairness

I wish that I were certain
But talk is only talk
If Mitt were in the White House
Then would I be a Hawk?

Would I have listened closely
And say John Kerry sold me
As I was quick to credit
All that Colin Powell told me?

And then an answer hit me
One I suspect is true
The trouble that I’m having
Is really déjà vu

The rattling of sabers
The clumsy road to war
I haven’t lived forever
But I’ve seen all this before

Perhaps I’m far more troubled
That I believed the claim
That THIS administration’s
Not for doing things the same

They told us we should never move
Without United Nations
So why is our Ambassador
On serial vacations?

If every nation understands
Their acts were grim and brutal
Propose a resolution
Even if you think it’s futile

Person’ly I think it would be
Groovy, cool and neato
To bring the world to witness
How the Russians use their veto

Perhaps you missed that lecture
In your Poly Science class
You can work the world on climate change
But not on Poison Gas!?

So…it’s not some regulation
Or this or that appointment
Our failure to do better
Is  my source of disappointment

Aug 16, 2013

Hope and Change Revisited

I feel like such a dope
I thought it was the hope
Just like the pundits told us
Our aspirations sold us
But clearly, truth to tell
Hope’s a thing ALL politicians sell

So as involved persuasion
Hope was only part of the equation

And in this double feature
Change is quite a different creature
Now even on vacation
The leader of our nation
Is starting to perceive
Change is somewhat harder to achieve
As scientist all say
An object that’s at rest tends to stay that way
Plus when the dust is cleared
Hope is always welcome
Change is often feared
Sure I want a brand new phone
But I’ll stay in my comfort zone
And seeing what’s occurred
Change has been delayed, waived and deferred
With laws subject to erasure
Change may come…but slower than a glacier
And though the goal was laudable
It’s taking more than hope
To make health care affordable

Aug 9, 2013

Words for Thought

A bunch of busy bodies
Have been making much ado
Wondering if Egypt has been
Going through a coup

Setting stunning standards
For deceit and obfuscations
The folks at State determined
Not to make determinations

Auditing the briefing then
The take-away is this
A coup is not a coup
The way a kiss is just a kiss

Of course upon reflection
I now understand completely
A rose is not a rose
And called a fish would smell as sweetly

Folks who study rhetoric
Have rarely seen the same
Backwards bending over
Since Cuomo spoke at Notre Dame

He said to run for office
In the states or jurisdictions
Every Catholic candidate
Should give up their convictions

If you're without convictions, sir
Then pray, consider silence
Or you’ll be saying terrorists
Are plotting workplace violence

Is zeal for wealth and power
So intense and so compelling
They can't show us the poke
Or pig within that they'll be selling?

I don’t ask much of politics
But beg for one thing mainly
Is there a politician who
For once can say things plainly?

Jun 23, 2013

Poems I Haven't Posted

Let’s Make a Deal

All around the Capitol
Work is being done
To ferret out the truth
And to locate that smoking gun

They’re looking at those bureaucrats
Who silently have served
In hopes that those who scorned the law
Might get what they deserved

If all this has you feeling
Kind of justice-y or kharma-ry
It’s tough to find a single gun
When looking in an armory

The obvious is hard to spot
Consider if you please
That oft repeated adage of
The forest and the trees

There’s truth in that old wisdom
But I’ll put it somewhat newer
It’s tough to see malarkey
When you’re swimming through a sewer

With all the Lois Lernering
And the shoddy Eric Holdering
There is no single smoking gun
The whole darn town is smoldering

But what has me most troubled
Every follicle’s gone grey for it
Crimes have been committed
But no one’s gonna pay for it

Congressmen are shouting
That attention must be paid
But somewhere in a conference room
Deals are being made

I say this very sadly
But I hope it will be quoted
Silence can be purchased
When the guilty are promoted

It’s a pretty practice
That goes right on back to royalty
When baronets and dukedoms
Were a way to garner loyalty

A title is a title
And I guess that should suffice
For Her Ladyship, Ms. Jarrett
And the Countess Susan Rice.

Alphabet Soup

Is in a mess
Should go away
And I suggest that OSHA
Should be shipped to Nova Scotia

Has a black eye
The SSA and DOJ
Don’t seem to know the time of day
And ditto for the CIA

But, you wouldn’t know
And couldn’t guess
If you tuned into CBS
Now, certainly there is no plot
They’re covering these scandals—not
You’d think around these stories all the news hounds
Would be hovering
But it’s the work of Taylor Swift
That Steve Croft has been covering

It seems to me
Couldn’t organize a spelling bee
And I won’t eat at a buffet
That’s served up by the FDA
And 2 + 2
I’ll have you know
Is well beyond the CBO

The obvious conclusion
Should make everybody ill at ease
The government has power
Far beyond its capabilities
And power unabated
Always seems to have a way
To slowly but quite surely
Lead the powerful astray

And so I think it’s liable
With hand upon the bi-able
That someday soon the POTUS
Will be tried before the SCOTUS
But the Media…won’t notice

June Gloom

My eyesight has been going
And my hearing’s out of tune
Two things that I commemorate
Every single June

And with each year that passes
I move more like cold molasses

There’s nothing in my closet anymore
That even fits me
The only saves I’m making
Happen when the puck just hits me

My train of thought is popping
Like an old victrola skips
And when I reach the putting green
I find I’ve got the yips.

 The graceful glades of memory
Seem more to me like thickets
And when I climb a stairway
My kneecaps chirp like crickets

My days are full of whining
And my nights are wet with tears
The only hair that’s growing
Is the hair that’s in my ears

The path I took to get here
With cold regret is littered
But still I have to smile
When alternative’s considered

There’s music and there’s beauty
There’s Chablis and guacamole
Hey, you there with a hockey team
Call if you need a goalie

The kid is off to college
It appears I’ll have some free time
Hey, you there at the golf course
What’s it look like for a tee time?

Amen dictu mirabile
My marriage just gets stronger
Hey, you there with that stop watch
Let me run a little longer

Apr 19, 2013

For Martin

When I was 8
And far away
Approaching my Communion Day
I’d rush to get my homework done
Then run outside to have some fun
The screen door crashed, I’d yell, “Good-bye.”
My mom didn’t even turn an eye
She’d call out after I was gone,
“Come home when the street lights come on.”

If there was time before the dark
I’d take my bike to Crocheron Park
Where swings and slides and monkey bars
Became my rocket ship to Mars
With Bruce and Ray and Jim and Bill
We’d race our bikes down Crocheron Hill

It was a rush
And quite a thrill
I wish that kids could do that still

For in the world that we’ve devised
No kids can play unsupervised
No one is safe from shrill alarms
Not even in their mothers’ arms
I saw the pictures of the boy
Another parent’s pride and joy
That toothless smile was quite a beaut
And proud in his Communion suit
How does he fit into the plan
This little Boston Bruins fan?
A sweet boy as those pictures show you
Martin, we’ll never get to know you

My son is 18, he’s not 8
The world I give him is not great
This prayer I pray with every letter
May his generation

Make it better.