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Let’s Pretend

Let's Pretend

Let’s pretend
That the world is new
And all decisions to make
Are up to you.
You can make your world
How you want it to be.
Where will you begin?
I can’t wait to see.

The world is yours. What will you do?

Let’s pretend
That math is zoo.
And monkey = 1
And tiger = 2.
Giraffe = 3
And llama = 4.
Subtract lion from bear
And you’ll get zebras galore.

What’s your answer for leopard + π

Let’s pretend
That ground is sky,
And we no longer walk–
All we do is fly.
Better keep your head down–
Looking up might hurt.
Cuz when it rains
It’s raining dirt.

If ground is sky, then what is Neptune?

Let’s pretend
That the man on the moon,
Was not a guy named Neil
But a gal named Soon.
She went to the moon
To prove her brothers wrong:
They said the moon is just for men
And that women don’t belong!

If you were Soon, would you make a stand?

Let’s pretend for real
That peace is at hand,
And that the Golden Rule
Is the rule throughout the land.
If we all pretend
Then the angels might sing.
If the whole world pretends
Is it still pretending?
From Poem Man

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Holdin’ Toes

Holdin' Toes

Holdin’ hands is supposed to be special,
But really, anyone can do it.
Just grab a hand and don’t let go,
That’s all there really is to it.

But my way of holdin’ is a little bit different.
In fact, I’m sure no one else even knows…
Just take off your shoes, and then your socks,
Cuz my way is holdin’ toes.


From Poem Man



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My Town

All my life I’ve lived in a town
Where stop means go
And up means down,

Where happy means sad
And black means white,
Where good means bad
And wrong means right,

Where night means day
And yes means no,
Where work means play
And fast means slow,

Where yesterday means tomorrow
And midnight means noon,
Where give means borrow
And later means soon,

Where lost means found
And water means ice,
Where square means round
And mean means nice.

So, if you ever visit
You’d better learn our ways,
Cuz if you ever try to leave
It means you’ll have to stay.

My Town

From Poem Man



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I’m told to be polite to my teacher.
And of course, to my principal, as well.
If I’m smart I’ll be polite to the policeman,
Or he just might put me in jail.

I ought to be polite to the doctor,
Cuz she’s gonna cure my flu.
And I better be polite to the lawyer,
In case I ever get sued.

The rule, I’m told, is to be polite
To all the grownups I see.
But my own rule is I’ll be as polite
As the grownups are to me.

From Poem Man


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The Tickle Café

The Tickle Cafe

There’s a café on the corner,
And it’s a most unusual place.
For the café’s only business
Is to put a smile upon your face.

This café is the place to go
If you’re feeling rather sad.
The waiters there don’t wait at all…
Their job is to make you glad.

So when you’re feeling grouchy,
Or sad, or even just fickle,
Just go to the café on the corner
And have yourself a tickle.



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Filthy, Nasty Butts!

Filthy Nasty Butts

I think people’s butts are great.
I mean, at least for sitting down.

It’s just all those filthy, nasty butts I hate
That are littered all over the ground!


From Poem Man.

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I don’t want to write bestsellers,
Or be president of this great land.
I don’t want to paint like Picasso,
Or sing in a rock and roll band.

I don’t want to star in the movies,
Or do anything that brings wealth or fame.
I don’t want to be an overpaid athlete
Of any professional game.

What I do want you might think is silly.
In fact, it might even make you giggle.
There’s only one thing in life I want. . .
And that’s to learn how to make my ears wiggle.


From Poem Man.

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Poem Man

Poem Man, the poem

Come hither all ye children
And gather round,
For the Poem Man cometh
To your quaint town.
He’s bringing the most magical, beautiful,
Spectacular sounds…
Sounds that you may have never heard before.

He has the sounds of pinks and yellows
And midnight blues.
You’ll hear rainbows and gumdrops
And morning dew.
Come hither sweet children,
Bring your parents too,
To hear the oceans converse with the shores.

Look, yonder cometh he
From the valley below.
Can you see on his shoulder
His talking, orange crow?
Make haste sweet children.
Get ready for the show,
For the time is drawing near.

He carries his poems
In a large, burlap sack.
Doesn’t it look heavy
Upon his broad back?
In it, not a rhyme is missing—
Not a riddle does it lack.
Be still now sweet children for the Poem Man is here.


Well, since the poem Butter was reasonably well-received a day or two ago, it inspired me to create a Poem Man page where I’ve included scans of the original book cover and introduction, as well as a Table of Contents listing all the poems and links to the ones that I’ve already shared online. You can find the new page under the BOOKS heading at the top of the page, or you can just click here.


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Boy, I want you to butter the bread.
And remember, I like it buttery.

But Dad, it’s too hard for me to spread the lard.
Can’t Sister do it instead?

Boy, it’s up to you to butter the toast.
Cuz the only way for you to learn

To do the things that you can’t do
Is to do those things the most.

So every time there is bread to butter
I want you to spread the cream.

And soon you’ll be the best bread butterer
That the world has ever seen.


Butter is from Poem Man, a children’s book of poetry that my family and I put together, – literally put together: the poeming, drawing, covering, printing, stapling, etc. – back at the turn of the century.

I must admit, that when my children were young I had aspirations of being the next Shel Silverstein, my favorite poet of all time. While that didn’t quite work out for me, it sure was a lot of fun fooling around with children’s poetry back then when the kids, and the internet, were still young.

It’s hard to believe the original Poem Man website, circa early 2000s, is still out there. Check it out if you’re in the need of a good chuckle.

Guess I was doing Indie before Indie was cool…

Poem Man Website

Almost forgot that I’ve already exploited Poem Man some time ago, tying in a poem, or at least attempting to, called Petey Peter the Garlic Eater with my review of W. Somerset Maugham’s masterpiece Of Human Bondage.

Yeah, I know… but what the heck, right?


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From Poem Man – Petey Peter the Garlic Eater

Petey Petey the Garlic Eater
Petey Petey the Garlic Eater

My review of W. Somerset Maugham’s masterpiece OF HUMAN BONDAGE reminded me of “Petey Peter the Garlic Eater,” a poem I wrote and which was included in POEM MAN, a children’s poetry book my family and I published back at the turn of the century.

Maugham’s classic novel and my less-than-classic poem both discuss, in their one ways, the important matter of addiction and dependency. In Maugham’s story, we find that, because of the protagonist Philip Carey’s love for Mildred, a love so strong she becomes his addiction (his bondage), he nearly destroys his own life. In my poem, we find that both Peter Peter’s excessive love for pumpkins and Petey Peter’s excessive love for garlic, addictions in their own rights, destroy, if not their own lives, then the lives of those around them.

Petey Peter the Garlic Eater

Petey Peter the garlic eater
Sat right behind me in class.
And if he wasn’t busy boisterously burpin’,
He was busy passin’ poisonous gas.

I couldn’t concentrate on my studies
Because of the stink he emitted.
As a result I failed all my classes.
As for graduation, I wasn’t permitted.

Now, if you’re a lover of riddles and rhymes
You might just remember his name.
Cuz his great, great, great, great, great, grandfather
Is famous for a name just the same.

But their names are their only sim’larities,
For they both liked to eat different treats.
Old Peter Peter preferred to eat pumpkins,
While it was garlic young Petey did eat.

Though I can’t imagine eating pumpkins
Unless smashed and baked as sweet pies.
But I do wish young Petey had eaten them,
Cuz his garlic breath always drew flies.

But pumpkins, too, can bring trouble.
It’s cuz of pumpkins old Peter lost a wife.
I guess if you do too much of anything
There’s a chance it could ruin a life.

It’s cuz of Petey’s stinky garlic breath
That every single class I did fail.
And it’s cuz I dropped out of grade school
That I eventually landed in jail.

But as for Petey, he invented a breath mint.
And it earned him a million or two.
And he married the great, great, great, great, great, granddaughter
Of the old lady who lived in the shoe.