Kite Flyer

When the wind

Carries a kite above the clouds

The flyer will feel an exhilaration

As pure as the joy

A poet feels

When a single line

Stirs the breeze of an idea

Lifting the boundaries of memory

The rush of words

As powerful as the drumbeat of thunder

The silence that only

The whisper of language can hear


Ted Goodell

November 2018

The Hunter

The sorrow of my childhood
Was the thoughtless killing of a little bird
Well dressed and educated as a boy
Deprived of nothing
Going to music lessons
and acting in plays.
Selecting a city skyline
for my oil painting theme
Then holding a rifle
in my boyish arms
Joining a friend to hike like woodsmen
On a Connecticut trail
Surrounded by the lush greenery of the Berkshire Hills
The unspoken truth of not deserving this paradise
An empty guarantee of perpetual entitlement
with juvenile perceptions
Responding to the wild energy around me
The aroma of earthy life
and the innocent joy of a little bird
Its pulse in full throat serenade
Revealing its beauty to the radiant sun
My rifle pointing at its fluorescent plumage
and in a flash
My guilt consumes me
The ground trembling
Under the weight of my shame

Ted Goodell
April 18, 2018

In Praise of Sitcoms

The sitcoms are entertaining

And the actors are superb

But sitcoms are not theatre

They are satellites to the theatre

And the TV studio is not a stage

Until the actors assemble to perform

And a glass screen watched by an audience

Can not open like a curtain

Although the magic of the remote

Can make us see a photographic curtain

But try to imagine

Interrupting Act II of Hamlet

Just when Ophelia laments how Hamlet

“Took me by the wrist and held me hard”

In order to sell a box of breakfast cereal

Yet we empathize and laugh

And laughter is the jewel of joy

Assuring us that brevity is often brilliant

For the spectator has entered a kingdom

Where brevity is the beginning of wisdom


Ted Goodell

January 2017

The Whole Enchilada


The enchilada glories

In its Mexican ancestry

It thrives on a democratic public

But not exclusively

For the enchilada

Will always be the food

For patrons of the recipe for hope

The resiliency of taste

The sacredness of joy


Ted Goodell

March 22, 2015

The Hummingbird


Suddenly, within the transparency

Of early dawn

The hummingbird arrived

With the swift concentric beating

Of its flashing wings

Aloft and then around

With barely noticeable

Torque of speed

It fired forth its aim upon

My simple feeder

Sipping the sweetness from this artifact of glass

A momentary hover

And then a burst of speed

As swiftly as it came

Its destination still sublime

And then one flower singled out

One garden filled with joy

Will soon betroth

This power, this force

That whispers its presence but does not destroy


Ted Goodell

November 16, 2009