Author Archives: Bruce Goodman

About Bruce Goodman

My day is astronomically fantabulous, inordinately splendid, incredibly superb! Hope your day's not its usual crap.

Music 417: Telling Secrets

Here is a piece of music for String Orchestra.

Telling Secrets (for String Orchestra) – audio HERE, sheet music HERE.

(Incidentally, the numbering of the music postings has got a bit out of sync so today’s number, although out of kilter, should put the counting back to right!)

2319. Triumph over rejection

I knew this would happen. It was inevitable. Right from the start. Bad luck has been my lot in life since the day I was born.

I’m a potato. Not a potato head you nincompoop, but a potato. A real potato. When we potatoes got dug up I was saved from getting sliced in half by the spade only by the skin of my teeth.

Let me tell you what abysmal thing happened to me. I was the first to be put into the potato bag. I thought, “Oh goody! Look at me! I’m first!” And then everyone else came after me. “The losers,” I thought. Mrs Sadie Brown did all the cooking and brought our bag home and put it in the pantry. Would you believe! She took out and used the potatoes at the top first. Off each potato went on an adventure and I was left grovelling at the bottom of the bag. Eventually I was the only potato not used. You have no idea the feelings of rejection a potato can have.

Next thing I noticed was that my skin had gone all wrinkly and my flesh soft and spongy. “Yuk!” said Mrs Sadie Brown as she threw me out the window. “That potato is good for nothing!”

This is true. This is the pits. She threw me out the window into the vegetable garden. I was left sitting among the unpleasant company of Tomato Jaune Flamme, Cucumbers Oriental Soo Yoh, and Lettuce Merveille des Quatre Saisons.

But guess what now? All the other potatoes got eaten. I’m sprouting.

Poem 109: Dawn chorus

(This is the third poem for the year – and the last in the Kyrielle form at least for the time being.)

I wake to hear the morning call
Of songbirds waking on the wing.
Cacophony of birdsongs brawl!
Such songs the many songbirds sing!

Developers have cut down trees;
Bird orchestra has lost some strings.
Yet still the birdsong fills the breeze!
Such song the lonely songbird sings!

This year the songs are quiet and few.
There’s little hope the songbirds bring.
The birds have flown like morning dew!
No songs the scattered songbirds sing!

The teacher says: Now hear the “Cheep!”
Recorded that these creatures sprang
Each morning while we tried to sleep.
This here’s the noise a songbird sang!

To hear the poem read aloud click HERE.

Poem 108: Yet still the mighty rivers

This is the second poem for the year. The form of this poem and tomorrow’s as well is from France and called a Kyrielle.)

These carriers of teeming life,
How quiet the ribboned waters go
Then tumble rocks in jagged strife.
Yet still the mighty rivers flow.

Farmers milk their herds of cows;
They moo, and eat, and fart, and low;
And all the shit escapes somehow,
Yet still the mighty rivers flow.

Factories on the river side
Exude their waste, no fuss or show.
Dead fish no longer need to hide,
Yet still the mighty rivers flow.

The farmers’ farms have said goodbye.
Factories closed: financial woe.
All is dead and withered dry
Yet still the mighty rivers flow.

To hear the poem read aloud click HERE.

Poem 107: Hear the knelling

(Happy New Year one and all! I’m going to try and write more poetry this year, so the first three days (at least) of 2022 will be poems. The form of these three poems is from France and called a Kyrielle.)

Dear friends, please stop and breathe the flowers;
Enjoy their many shades of smell.
Don’t waste, but while away, the hours;
Yet hear the knelling of the bell.

Forget the busy city scene;
Its cluttered mess, its noise, its yell.
Dream instead of landscapes clean;
Yet hear the knelling of the bell.

The hope of birds to build their nests,
Another brood to sing and tell
Of how our planet’s truly blessed.
Yet hear the knelling of the bell.

Far quicker than you think can be
The world will worsen into hell.
By all means dance your footfalls free
Yet hear the knelling of the bell.

To hear the poem read aloud click HERE.

Poem 106: Beach walk

Hello everyone. I thought as a final posting for the year I would post a poem! It has nothing to do with the New or Old Year!

The form of the poem is a Sestina. It is a form used in some French poetry, and I find it quite hard to write. Anyway, I thought I would give it a go!

I battle long and empty beach.
I fight against the wind.
White manes of horses crash
to shore in wild spray.
My thoughts are tangled all adrift
and drown in angry waves.

I cannot hear for noise of waves
the calls of birds on beach.
They fight to fly, are cast adrift
as victims of the wind.
Their wings are torn like salted spray
as on the dunes they crash.

I long for calm as waters crash;
I’ll quiet the seething waves.
The sanded, salted, pitting spray
face-stings my walk on beach.
Christ calmed a storm, Christ calmed the wind;
Why set my mind adrift?

A fisher’s boat was tossed adrift
and pummelled in a crash.
Yet none about, no voice in wind,
no drownings in the waves.
Just one abandoned boat on beach
left to sand and spray.

The storm intensifies its spray,
the boat is freed adrift,
the sand blows mad along the beach,
the skies unleash its crash.
Waves no longer follow waves
but roil in the wind.

At last a blue patch in the wind;
less biting of the spray;
a quietening of deafening waves.
My mind unbound adrift.
My thoughts are stilled, though whitecaps crash,
and peace returns to beach.

My thoughts the wind released adrift.
Thoughts spray as ordered breakers crash.
Peace now waves goodbye to storm on empty beach.

To hear the poem read aloud click HERE.

2318. A cause for celebration

Royden couldn’t wait for the most horrible year in his life to finish.

“Simply everything that could go wrong has gone wrong this year,” said Royden. “The car was written off. I lost my job. The pandemic sent us into lockdown. The pet budgerigar escaped. Great-aunt Constantia died and left her substantial savings not to us but to the Pamper a Hamster Society.”

“Never mind, Dear,” said Crystal his wife. “A new year is about to begin. We can make a new beginning.”

“I’m looking forward to it,” said Royden.”Things couldn’t get worse. I’ll tidy the backyard for a hope-filled New Year’s Eve celebration!”

New Year’s Eve arrived! They began to celebrate. Royden got hopelessly inebriated and retired early to bed.

2317. Building conversion

I worked in a hardware store. One afternoon the boss called me to his office. I thought I was going to get the sack but it wasn’t that at all. It was sort of a promotion.

He said he had three sons and a daughter and two of the sons and the daughter had done okay. The third son had done enormously well. He was the richest in the family by far. What he did was buy an old barn or an old milking shed or an old church or something. He would live on the property in an old caravan and convert and renovate the building to perfection. Thus far he had renovated six buildings and sold each for millions. He loved his work but never took time off. It was an obsessive twelve hour day seven days a week.

To be perfectly honest, said the boss, my son needs a hand. You would live on the property (in your own comfortable caravan of course) and be put on a huge wage and given a vehicle.  Would I be interested? It was several hours drive away.

Would I be interested? It’s something I’d absolutely love to do; although it would depend on whether I got along okay with the boss’s son. And provided of course he didn’t have a raging misogynistic attitude like many do against female carpenters. And try, added the boss, to get Kevin (that was the son’s name) to take a bit of time off.

Well that was several months ago. Kevin and I have decided to live in the latest place we’ve just finished and call it home.

“That was the plan,” said the boss.

2316. Murder is not always straightforward

The trouble using poisonous berries to kill your mother-in-law is that the mixture of poisonous berries tastes awful. You can add strawberries and raspberries and blue berries, but the few poisonous berries tossed into the mix render the concoction unpalatable.

I even tried a strong tasting ice cream to go with it, but without luck. I made a berry pie with the most delectable pastry. Still no luck.

In the end I took the more expensive road; I hired someone to shoot her. Now my wife wants a divorce for my part in getting her mother murdered.

The trouble using poisonous berries to kill your wife is that the mixture of poisonous berries tastes awful…