The Conversation

The reliability of “Hello”

Is always validated

It is programmed

And dependable and

Suggests that moving

Toward the substance

Of essential words

Will follow out of

Shared responsibility

And toward what end

Only each speaker

Can comprehend


Ted Goodell

May 2018

The Signal

The search isn’t over

For Frost’s yellow woods

Or Sandburg’s prarie brown grass

They’ve all been politically

Placed in Blue States and Red States

With bugging devices

And hidden cameras

And the other marketing tools

To discover and predict

How the human mind

Chooses shampoos and deordorants

The configurations of the terrain

Are now regulated

By zip codes and area codes

PIN numbers and passwords

And hidden in among

The rooted trees

Are mannequins with plastic leaves

Oh brave new world

With all the androids in it

Oh split second ammendment

With all the weapons in it.


Ted Goodell

May 2018

The Lion

Epitomized in stone

But glorified in flesh

Dangerously beautiful

But all alone

The contender for uncontested power

His grandeur statuesquely strong

Forever regal in a body carved in stone

His presence as the King of Beasts

A sculpted form

Upon a city street

His solitary watch

May look serene

But if his silent stone could speak

A sterner stare

Would leave us weak

For underneath that chiseled mane

Arrested in the snow or rain

He waits in primal depth

His endless longing

For his lioness.


Ted Goodell

May 2018

On Turning Eighty-Five

I turned Eighty-Five

On the morning

of a Royal Wedding

All the pagentry and song

Auspiciously including

My Birthday with a TV invitation

With such historical moment

That I know

This Birthday bonds with history

The protocol of Royal Ritual

Makes turning Eighty-Five

a mirror image

of an almost

Fantasy surprise


Ted Goodell

May 2018

The Deli

There is no abstraction
In the making
Of a roast beef sandwich
The algebraics of ingredients
The subtle formula
Of production and customer satisfaction
Has long been understood
To represent the highest form
Of social engagement
And the drive of hunger
For bread, cheese and meat
Lights the divine moment
Of bite and eat.

Ted Goodell
May 2018