Poetry


Thanks For The Bark

by Scott Cooley on 5/25/2016

When my dog hears other dogs bark in the distance at night

He barks back to them to let them know they're not alone

If I could speak for my dog, I wonder what I'd say?

If I could translate, what would the other dogs say back?

I hear you, hear me too, you heard me back, we're not alone

We're living lives nearby, yours must not be so different than mine

Obviously, they let you out regularly, just like me

And back in, too, but don't you ever wish we were free?

Who are you?  How are you?  I remember your bark now.

Are you being treated well these days?  Is your life ok?

Mine could be better, but at least I've been let out...again

Life's hard sometimes isn't it?  Do you think we have it easy?

My people talk to me, but it's not the same as talking to you

They don't always know what I want, but my people love me

I guess I'm happy, and I can tell from your bark you're happy too

Do your people make you feel better when you're down?

Do they go away and leave you, and do you sleep a lot too?

Do they let you do the things you want to do?

Yep, same here.  I'm always happy when they come home...

So I won't be alone.  Are you in a similar boat?

Wish they would let us play together, be around each other more

Glad we could bark this out together, glad we're not crazy

Are they slow to let you out, slow to let you in?  me too

How's the food?  food meant for us, not bad, their food, better!

Me too.  Do they not walk you enough?  me too.

I hear you, you hear me, even though we're trapped, it's not so bad

In those barks, is confirmation, complaints and comparison

I hear you, you hear me, maybe we're not trapped, it's not so bad

Wouldn't you be glad if you were free to roam free?  me too, me three

We're in this world together, aren't we?  with similar dreams

Dreams of roaming free, but maybe we'd get tired and hungry and cold

We'd need to eat, and how would we find food?

We'd need to sleep eventually, but how could we feel safe?

Maybe we've got it made already, maybe we're lucky

In this small world together, neighbors with homes and people

People who love us, feed us, let us sleep in a warm, safe place

These things we have in common, don't we?  yes, we do

Life is good, isn't it?  life is good, thanks for the bark, good night


The Candle

By Scott R. Cooley (written Jan. ’00)

When you lit the wick, the flame flickered in the wind
Light casting shadows on the wall that danced through halls that were dim
Spirits from the afterlife matched their wits with our world’s form
Reminding us that life goes on when we die as replacement lives are born

As the wax melted and dripped, you dipped your finger tip in
You felt alive as it burned then turned to solid again on your skin
Like souls re-shaped and recycled, yet the balance forever changed
Fire in the Earth’s core will make everything new again

And when the candle was no more, its lifetime came to a close
You thought of people making a difference, and that’s the way it goes
The moment that you’ve shared your thoughts, the world’s a better place
And like the warmth and beauty of that candle, you’ve put a smile on someone’s face





Smash the TVs

By Scott R. Cooley, completed on Tuesday, February 12, 2007


BRIGHT LIGHT SHINES ACROSS THE HORIZON, AS THE MORNING SUN IS SLOWLY RISIN'
THE WEAPONS FROM THE NIGHT BEFORE, ARE SCATTERED ALL ACROSS THE FLOOR

WE WONDER WHY AS WE CLOSE THE DOOR, WE'RE OFF TO FIND OUR MINDS

GORY SCENES FLASH IN AND OUT, LIKE MOVING NIGHTMARE DREAMS OF DOUBT

HALF-ASLEEP AND HALF-KNOCKED OUT, THESE MOVIE SCREENS THEY MAKE ME SHOUT

THAT WAS THEN AND THIS IS NOW, GOTTA PUT THE PAST BEHIND

AND AS WE GET INTO THE CAR, HIGH IN THE SKY A SINGLE STAR

REALITY IS SETTING IN, YOU’RE IN A RACE YOU’LL NEVER WIN

YOU TRY TO SHIFT GEARS, BUT ALL THEY DO IS GRIND

GOTTA DRIVE AWAY FROM THIS ELECTRIC HELL, GET BACK TO WILD NATURE SMELLS

SMASH THE TVs AND OPEN THE BLINDS


THEY WANT TO KEEP US DRUGGED, KEEP US FAT, MAKE US LABORATORY RATS

FEED US FULL OF IDLE CHAT, UNTIL WE DON'T KNOW WHERE WE'RE AT

LIKE ZOMBIES ALL WE ARE IS LIVING DEAD

NEVER KNOWING HOW TO CARE, NEVER NEED TO BREATHE FRESH AIR

NEVER FREE TO SAY A PRAYER, WITH NO CREATIVE THOUGHTS TO SHARE

IT'S NOT FAIR TO BE HANGING BY A THREAD

WE'RE PUPPETS FOR A SICK REGIME, WITHOUT A CHECK THEY REIGN SUPREME

THE BALANCE OF THE WORLD IS GONE, BUT A DAY LIKE NO OTHER HAS DAWNED

SOMETIMES THE ONLY WAY TO CHANGE IS BLOODSHED

AND IT'S TIME TO GET BACK TO THE WAYS OF OLD, TIME TO WAKE UP AND FACE THE COLD

SMASH THE TVs, AND GET OUT OF BED


SOMETIMES YOU'VE GOT TO TAKE A STAND, FIND A WAY TO LIVE OFF THE LAND

TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR WHAT YOU KNOW IS TRUE, DON'T BE AFRAID TO START ANEW

WHEN YOUR LEADERS HAVE TOLD YOU NOTHING BUT LIES

WE REMIND OURSELVES OF ALL THESE THINGS, SO WE DON'T FORGET TO LAUGH AND SING

WHEN ALL YOU WANT TO DO IS QUIT, AIN’T IT TIME YOU FOUND A BETTER FIT

LET YOUR CONSCIENCE BE YOUR GUIDE

FIND A PLACE WHERE YOU BELONG, WHERE YOUR NEIGHBORS ALL SING THE SAME SONGS

IF ITS SOMETHING THAT YOUR HEART BELIEVES, ITS SOMETHING THAT YOUR MIND CONCEIVES

USE YOUR KNOWLEDGE, AND YOUR PRIDE

WITH FAMILY AND FRIENDS AROUND, SOON YOUR SPIRITS WILL RISE FROM THE GROUND

SMASH THE TVs, BEFORE YOU DIE

SMASH THE TVs, AND GET A LIFE


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Driftwood on the Beach

By Scott Cooley, July 9th, 2006

Driftwood on the beach, I wonder where you've been
You were once part of a living tree, but you’ve long since been dead
Did lightning make you fall off a limb, then get lifted by the wind
Did you make a big splash, did you crash or break or spin
Did a tornado drop you off miles from where you once grew
From stream to river to lake, were you once part of a canoe
You came in with the tide, once water logged and slimy
Now you’ve dried out in the wind under the sun that’s been shining
Maybe on some other sunny day a thousand years from now
You’ll become petrified like the rocks I find spread all around
And maybe in a million more, you’ll be scattered grains of sand
Like the ones you’re nestled in now, right here where I stand
I could pick you up and keep you, maybe start a new collection
Maybe your relatives will float along and I’ll attempt a resurrection
I could use you to make furniture, or perhaps a work of art
But you look so good just where you are, I don’t think I’d have the heart
Your reflection in the water sure does paint a pretty picture
Your travels must have been as slow as reading scripture
And as I stare at you and ponder the places you might’ve been
I can’t help but wonder all about the how and the when
No cross section rings could ever begin to tell your story
So I’ll simply let you be right here in all your natural glory
I’ll resist temptation, and spare you the pick up and toss
Driftwood on the beach, I’m glad our paths did cross



Head's An Antenna

by Scott Cooley, Wednesday, July 14, 2004


They say I've got night terror, but I don't remember much
Sit up in the bed, screamin' and such
I don't know why it happens, don't know why I've got another language all my own
I speak to myself with, in my mind, when I'm alone

They say I speak it in my sleep, and sometimes I sleep walk around
Sometimes it's quiet, sometimes it's loud
Other dimensions, untapped potential
The mind's existence in a life transcendental

After I die maybe I'll get the answers, but for now I do what I can
Could be I'm a zombie, could be I'm an alien man
Every now and then I get this mood that's intense - Is it creative?  I don't know
Other people's words flow through me, Like I'm writin' down a script from a live show

I get in this frame of mind that puts words in my head
People talkin' to each other, could they be dead?
I won't know unless they tell me, but they never do
Sometimes I tune in or out, sometimes they're stuck there like glue

Could I be pickin' up waves, signals from cell phones
My head's an antenna, for regular folks callin' their homes
Could I be pickin' up waves, radio or TV?
Is it even possible, or is it just me?

I know they're real, I hear the voices so clear,
I could probably type out what they say, the conversations I hear
They never talk to me, so I guess that's cool
Is this a special gift, is this a special tool?

Could I use it to be a spy, can anyone else do the same?
Maybe I'll post up a web site, get a host and a name
Maybe they're ghosts in purgatory, waitin' to be free
Maybe they don't know their fate, maybe they listen to me

Well, the moral of this story is don't spend too much time alone
Move out to the country, make the wilderness your home
Get out of the way of the waves with the voices
I'd do it myself, if I was prepared to make those choices

But for now I'm immobile, and all I can do is my best
To listen to music, talk to people, and hope I'm not possessed

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For Lucky

by Lenore & Scott Cooley - March '09

Every day when we come home, he greets us at the door.
Toy in mouth, waggin’ tail, as he melts down on the floor.
“Scratch my belly, please,” he says, as we comply with a smile,
Then he wants to go outside and run a country mile!
He’s the king of our back yard, keeping the critters at bay,
No squirrels, no rabbits, and no raccoons, he chases them all away.
Sometimes he lies in waiting, staring up at a tree,
Waiting for a squirrel to descend so he can pounce with glee.
He’s come so close a million times, with the squirrel just inches away,
But he never lets it get him down, he’s back again each day!
At night when we go to sleep, he jumps up on the bed,
He nestles in between us, on our pillow he lays his head.
He has a ton of Lucky toys, and carries them wherever he goes,
He even has one who looks like him, and he loves to bite his nose!
Hair, hair, everywhere, but he’s worth it, I must say,
We just keep rollin’ it off our clothes every single day!
Household chores aren’t so bad with Lucky by our side,
Lots to do and Lucky is glad to come along for the ride.
Speaking of ride, he loves…loves…loves!! to ride along in the car,
Head out the window, flappin’ ears, he feels like a movie star!
But I think Lucky is happiest when it’s just us three,
Hanging out watching him shake up his toy, Scottie, our Lucky, and me.


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A Battle Won

By Scott Cooley 3/31/2004

 

You're gonna remember the last mistake I made

You're gonna remember all the other ones too

You're gonna believe all the dirt they dug up on me

You're gonna believe all the mud they slung at me too


And when I'm down on the ground you're gonna kick me all around

You'll say I'm a disgrace and then you'll rub my nose in

You'll get everyone else to jump on your band wagon and jam pile on top

You'll all stomp me dead, then stop and celebrate your win


And everyone will say you did the right thing

They'll all be on your side and be ready to sing

But my voice will ring in your ears forever more

Things I said instead of the ocean's roar


In every shell you hold up to your ear

My music the only thing you'll be able to hear

You'll live with what you did 'till the day you die

You'll try to forget and go on livin' a lie


All you'll see is me when you close your eyes

When you sleep you'll dream of all your lies

Over and over again never leaving your head

Your conscience will kill you slowly 'till your dead


An early victory won with deceit made you smug

An early grave for the loser you happily dug

It didn't concern you how the battle was won

You never thought winning could be so much fun


But now you'll never get pleasure from fun again

You'll only think of what could have been

But it's gonna eat away the crust of your very soul

Your Christmas presents will all look to you like lumps of coal


To fight fair and lose and die with dignity

Is something you'll never have, and so you'll never be free

My ghost will haunt you into eternity

So you'll know what it's like on the other end of mean


You may never give up, you may continue to win

But you'll always live knowing you lost from within

And every time you grin, the rest of the world will see

Just what a fool you've been, and what a fool you'll always be

 

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 A Toast For The Jolly Hostess

by Scott Cooley on 07/18/2007


Let's toast our jolly hostess, for she's the life of the party
Our palettes were parched and our appetites were hearty
Now we're full of good spirits, full from our feast
We're full of good beer and good cheer, to say the least
This merry group of revelers is festive and jesting
Our good fortune is such a beautiful blessing
So let's raise our glasses to the queen of this affair
May she take a break, take a drink and let down her hair !



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Sleep

by Scott Cooley, sometime in about 1999

I never seem to have the time to do nothing long enough to do something
Seems like I’m always behind, it keeps me from the right state of mind
I get so close
Longing for that mood again, when I can really jam and be myself
I’m looking for a dream to paint a picture on some tape
Can anyone out there relate?
We compromise integrity out of necessity
Not alone enough
I just need everyone to go away, I need to be left alone to play
Work my way into a wired frenzy rush
Get my brain insane when my world is hush
Stay up late and ride the wave ‘till the break of day
And then in my bed I’ll lay wondering as I drift off to sleep
Was any of it good enough to keep?
God let me live to do it again
Cause the longer I live the closer I get
To the end





BAREFOOT

By Scott Cooley on Friday, June 11th, 2004

 

Barefoot, rustling through a pile of leaves in fall, crumbling, falling doesn’t hurt at all

Barefoot, dirt and bugs between my toes, hope they don’t get in my nose

Barefoot, sinking deep in powder snow in winter, trying not to get stuck, too cold

Barefoot, gotta rush back in, it’s gonna feel good to get warm again

Barefoot, through a puddle in the rain in spring, splashing, Dad’s wearin’ galoshes

Barefoot, walking across the river, slippery rocks, gotta make it home by dinner

Barefoot, tall green grass, sand in summer, dry or wet, memories I’ll never forget

Barefoot, hot asphalt pavement, eggs don’t really fry, got to fly across and I’m

Barefoot, feelin’ cool, wearin’ socks and shoes can be so cruel

Barefoot, give your feet a break, set them free, happier, try it and see

Barefoot, like a cave man, stompin’ grounds, jungle tribe, natural way to be

Barefoot, feelin’ the ground, lettin’ ‘em breathe, footloose and fancy free

Barefoot, danglin’ off the dock, a dip in the pool, no more stinky socks

Barefoot, testin’ the waters, ticklin’ the bottoms, runnin’ through the woods

Barefoot, soakin’ in the tub, hot water wash with soapy suds

Barefoot, getting’ a petticure, massage and rub, pampered for sure

Barefoot, life is good.  Barefoot, the way we should.  Barefoot, life is good.



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Comforts Of Home and A Green Kitchen Phone

by Scott Cooley on 9/26/2014


In our avacado-green kitchen
There was a matching green phone
On a green formica table
In my first childhood home
The long cord fascinated me
As my Mom got things done
Cooking with it on her shoulder
Listening was fun
So efficient her movements
While she laughed with a friend
I didn't understand the conversations
As I drew pictures with a pen
But remembering how I felt
I knew I was learning little things
As I watched and listened and drew
Feeling the love only a mother brings
Safe with a place in this world
Where I could just be myself
Figuring out who I was
As she got bowls down off a shelf
Soon we'd have dinner
And Dad would be home too
Happy to see me
And ready for beef stew
I didn't mind her talking
And not paying attention to me
I was happy she was happy
I was comfortable and free