Thursday, September 23, 2010

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 33

Cologne on me generally turns rancid. I don't know why.

The only cologne I've found that makes me smell clean, fresh, handsome, sexy, and hot is Banana Republic "Classic". Now I learn that BR has DISCONTINUED it! My life may be over.

The green Polo smells nice on me, but it's just soooo 1970's. Not to worry. I've found four "fragrances" in colorful plastic bottles for $7 each at Wal-Mart. Everyone at work loves how I smell every day, and they tell me so. Admitting this is quite a risky thing to do, I know: Plastic bottles. "Fragrances". $7. And, lordy forgive me, Wal-Mart. I don't care much for Wal-Mart. But it is what it is.

And I smell nice.

So forgive this Magpie. I tried. I really did!

Can I Drink It On Ice?

The Willow Ball beckons, tux and bow tie.
Slicked back hair, patent leather am I.
Impressive I'd be, like Niven and Grant,
with Acqua di Parma, "Suave Rico", they'd chant!
So off to Sephora, my nose in the air,
I asked for a bottle and everyone stared.
But at 83Dollars and two ounces in hand,
there's something about an Aqua Velva man!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Steven at The Golden Fish has been gracious in allowing me to post below one of his recent photos with a poem. ( )

His two latest posts titled "the tattered flags" and "the slow drift in and away" have given us several stunning photos along with his always inspiring poetry and writings. The photo that caught my eye has what I believe to be a bird "captured" on the right center portion of the picture. When I enlarged it, I'm certain it isn't a plane, it isn't Superman, it's a bird! See what you think!

Thanks again to Steven for allowing me to borrow his photograph! I encourage everyone to visit him at The Golden Fish.

Rick Baker

Rochester, NY

September 21, 2010

Day of Passing: Beginning of Autumn

day of passing

cobalt, white and gold
rushing brushing
painting vistas

a smitch of crow
swallows ethereal colors
of summer's season

a vaporous day of passing
upon us so

Photo by Steven Leak, Ontario, Canada, 2010.
Thanks again to Steven at "The Golden Fish" for
allowing me to borrow his beautiful photo.

Poem © 2010 by R. Burnett Baker

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 32


hourglass moments
set on a

our time together
flows grain by grain,
top to

a vial of sand
waiting to be

Poem © 2009 by R. Burnett Baker
Photo courtesy of Willow at Magpie Tales.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Nine Eleven Essay Repost

The following is an essay I posted on my other blog, BakersTake, two years ago. I'm taking the liberty of reposting it here today.

Some years ago I heard, or read conspiracy chatter about contrails being a sinister plot by the government to spray chemicals over the country as some kind of mass experiment. It may have been talk show host Art Bell who did a program about contrails. Doesn't really matter who. I heard it somewhere and had to laugh about it.

Most people I've talked to don't even know what a contrail is. As a boy in the Texas Panhandle I would see aircraft contrails every day in the clear skies of the plains. Now, I watch them in the early mornings at sunrise. I'm fascinated by them, not because of what they are doing to the masses, but because of where the aircraft might be coming from, and where they're going. I watch them coming over from the northeast and imagine that this one or that one or the one over there is coming from Europe and headed for, gee, I don't know, maybe Chicago, or Atlanta, or Houston, or the west coast. Others coming in from the northwest surely must be flying in from Asia for New York or Boston, or Washington DC.

I think of the time it takes for each flight. From my many years of travel to and from Asia I know that to get from Rochester, NY to, say Taipei takes a total of about 22 hours. Not all of that in the air, mind you, but it's a long haul. As I look up in the morning at each streaking contrail I know that the brief time it takes each plane to fly out of my sight is but a flash in the sky compared to the total time those passengers will experience on their journey. For some time after the plane has vanished from my view, the contrail will remain. It either quickly dissipates, or spreads out on wind currents, finally appearing as a stretch of clouds.

Each part of this experience is a measure of time: My view of the tiny plane, the time it takes the plane to vanish from view, the flight time each invisible passenger spends on the journey, and the time afterward that the contrail is visible. The contrail, for me, is the only evidence of a journey taken by those passengers. It's my confirmation of life that passes above me, and speeds rapidly away.

Four years ago, on the 5th anniversary of 9/11, I happened to be outdoors on that clear morning, as usual looking up at aircraft and their contrails. It struck me that it was September 11th. In less time than it took for one of the aircraft to vanish from my sight, I quickly wrote a short poem. Today, as we mark another anniversary of the day that redefined our world views, I'll share that poem here.

In the morning as the sun rises, look up and watch a jet carry lives from somewhere to somewhere else. Consider all the elements of time that journey represents. See how long the contrails last. And appreciate the short time you're able to live, stand, look into the sky and imagine.


contrail cloud:

evidence of a journey

swept away on winds

as lives

speed invisible

through Earth's

ocean sky.

Poem © 2006 by R. Burnett Baker

Essay © 2008 by R. Burnett Baker

Photo © 2008 by R. Burnett Baker

Friday, September 10, 2010

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 31: On Faith

temporal prayer

the pious
cast inward

my eyes
to compass

on ancient
panes of

Poem © 2010 by R. Burnett Baker
Photo courtesy of Willow at Magpie Tales

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Open The Glass Door

Queen Street West. Toronto, Ontario. Quaint shops define this street in the artsy fartsy district of Toronto. Many of the buildings are old and a bit tattered, but quaint nonetheless.

About a block east of Claremont Street and about three blocks west of Bathurst I glanced at a glass door at 704 Queen West. It was painted with various shades of blue graffiti, and under the painted street number the stenciled words "JUDGE ME". What, who, why was all I could think. So I snapped a cell phone photo.

Behind that door are stairs to the walk-up apartment in that building. Beyond that is left to one's imagination. I'm not sure I really want to see beyond that glass door and those two words.

judge me

a wellspring of my impatience
floods my eyes, drowns my soul.

damn the drought of my conscience
with karmic retribution, surrendering
my pride to shameful supplication.

I beg redemption to choke me with

and make me

Poem © 2010 by R. Burnett Baker
Photo © 2010 by R. Burnett Baker
Photo taken by R. Baker at 704 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario, August 2010.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Magpie Tales Photo Prompt 30: Succulence of Life

Eve didn't care:
she hungered for
sweet succulence of life,
ignoring skin bespattered
with spots blacker than
ink on pages of
Vanity Fair.

Poem © 2010 by R. Burnett Baker
Photo courtesy of Willow at Magpie Tales