A Gift to The Throne

A roll of toilet paper

Begins as a fully formed commodity

It is first seen in its full paper power

Stylistically and securely wound

Yard after yard like a sacred scroll

Layer upon layer surrounding a tube

It is softly ornamental

But its practical objective is indisputable

It contends with no rivals

For it has no rivals

Nor can it be rejected

When summoned to a throne

It has no vanity

Though its popularity is unsurpassed

It carries its silent secrets

Far from probing eyes

As it travels with fluid speed

Below the structures

Holding up the universal throne.

 

Ted Goodell

June 3, 2019

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The Sewing Machine

Needle and thread

Bobbin and treadle

Transform the necessity of sewing

From housework to occupation

Giving ownership of the sewing machine

The financial economy of power

Where once repetitive foot pressure

And tearing eye strain

Bled the operator from the grip of labor

The endless assault

Of patching a shirt

Or hemming a skirt

The years of toil

A slow reminder of pins and thimbles

The gnarled grip of tired fingers

Saving a child’s self esteem

With mended shirt

And twice turned cuffs

The dim lamp lighting

The weariness of yesterday

The burden of bending relieved

The brilliance of invention conceived

The dreams of generations of workers fulfilled

The joy of perfection that the sewing machine instilled

 

Ted Goodell

October 2018

Test Drive

Whoever knows the mystique

Of driving a muscle car

Hearing the resonance

Of the detonating ignition

The test drive

Rushing explosively

Like a land rocket

Over desert flats

Axels and tie-rods and gears

Bursting the acceleration

Of sand into brown clouds

Of visionary power

Brakes and tires

Screeching the torque force

Out of alignment

Skid stopping just long enough

To let the romantic driver

Embrace the energy

Of the crowning sales pitch

 

Ted Goodell

September 2018

A Cat Named Tucky

What ghosts

My Cat pursues

I can not know

He finds them

Lurking in a dream

That only he has seen

It gives him access

To a world

I hardly know

But draws him

To a world

As precious as a pearl

It guides him

With a power compassed

By the shadows and the stars

And in his purring dream

He challenges old phantoms

Only he has seen

 

Ted Goodell

June 2018

Fake News

Observe the custom tailored suit

Cut from the finest cloth

A surfeit of fabric

Richly adorned

And from the collar

Of a perfect shirt

Hangs a necktie

Lengthwise like a flag

And underneath

That stoutish frame

A resonance of power reigns

The bold bravado of a salesman

Stern and full of wrath

A governance deployed

To shock both foes and friends

The boundaries

Where two countries borders meet

Await a wailing wall

Where all can weep

 

Ted Goodell

June 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

Still When the Wooded Fox is Born

 

Still when the wooded fox is born

Almost forgotten now

Brute nature

Rude in her green power,

Curious seasons

Clean as milk

And tangled

When the wind blows,

Oh timeless vanity

Give nothing back

But your hot fury

When the sun

Is a stiletto of steam

And all your dark flowers

Bend as the deep sediment dreams

 

Ted Goodell

February 6, 2008