Wednesday, December 19, 2012


Enjoy a week of languishing in your comfort zone, here's my writing comfort like Grandma's old quilt in response to NWCU's challege to tell the old in new way

Three brother goats were all named Gruff
One was small and frail,
And bigger was the middle brother,
The oldest larger still.

Their farmer wanted fatter goats,
And sent them up yon hill
To where the grass grew lush and green,
So they could eat their fill.

Now, on their way they had to cross
A bridge o’er lively brook,
The home of one darn ugly troll
That left all terror-struck.

His eyes as wide as saucers glowed
Deep red with blood of those
Who’d tried to cross his bridge before
While he had want to doze.

His nose as long as fireside’s poker
Could smell a child’s cold fear;
He ate all those who crossed his bridge,
He ate them all right there.

So came the first--the youngest goat,
Who was but skin and bone.
“Trip trap trip trap,” the bridge sang out
With hoof and wood’s soft tone.

“Who’s that tripping o’er my bridge?”
The troll awoke and roared.
It’s voice struck fear in all who heard
The mean ring to its chord.

“Tis only I the smallest one,”
The billy goat replied.
“I’m going to eat where grass is green,
Get fat on yon hillside.”

“And now I’ll come to gobble you,”
The troll called out with glee.
”You woke me up and now I’m starved;
“You’ll make a meal for me!”

“Oh pray don’t take me!  I’m so small;
“If you’ll just wait a while,
“My brother comes along real soon;
“He’s bigger by a mile!”

The troll was hungry but he thought
More food if he’d but wait.
“Be gone,” he called and settled in
To listen for the gait.

T’was soon he heard those louder steps
Upon the bridge’s edge
Trip trap trip trap trip trap.
“Who trips upon my bridge?”

“It’s me, the second billy goat
“It's where the grass is at
“I Go.  Up to the hill to eat
“And eat untill I’m fat.”
“I’m coming up to gobble you!”
The troll knew by the voice
And louder step the billy goat
Indeed was better choice.

“Oh no, not me for brother three
“Is so much bigger still!
“You’ll eat and eat and eat some more
“Until you get your fill!”

His tummy rumbled, made him a grouch
But more was always good
“Very well.  Be off with you!”
He waited for his food.

Then came the heavy steps of one
Across the wooden pass.
Trip trap trip trap trip trap
This goat had some mass!

The  ancient bridge gave creak and groan
Under this big goat.
“Who’s that tramping o’er my bridge?”
”You're bigger by a lot!”

And in a voice as deep and mean
As the troll could do,
He called “I’m coming up to eat,
“And eat until I’m through!”

“Well, come along! I've got two spears,
And I'll poke your eyeballs out at your ears;
I've got besides two curling-stones,
And I'll crush you to bits, body and bones”

The troll came up and met the goat,
And on the battle raged.
Two warring beasts upon the bridge
Both bloodied and enraged.

But in the end, the goat would stand
The baddest billy goat,
The biggest of the three Goat Gruffs
Would wear a troll skin coat.

Well they ate and fat they got
On tender blades of green.
So fat they got, they couldn’t walk;
Upon yon hill they’re seen.

                        --Monty Wheeler

Thursday, December 13, 2012


The age'd poet died today,
His works of note all thrown away,
His pencils carefully honed to points
As sharp as pain in his old joints,
As brittle as a witch’s ire
All tossed into the open fire.

The age'd poet died today;
No fame or fortune came his way.
And in the last notebook he’d kept,
The tear stained pages where he’d wept
Upon the knowledge Death drew near,
His final stanza written there. . .

And to my children if they’d care:
The heavy burdens that I bear
Will soon be lifted from my shoulder,
For days grow dark, and I grow older.
And none can rescue time gone by
From the clock’s slow ticking cry.
But save this verse, and carve this curse:
“His epitaph should ever tell
They didn’t know he loved them well.”

The age'd poet died today
His final stanza locked away
In smoke toward Heaven--last desire
Unread, burned black by callused fire.

                                    --Monty Wheeler

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


my response to NWCU's wonderful prompt of night and darkness


Romance the Night, yet fear the Dark.
A full-moon’d Night ignites a spark
Of heat and lust in loins and heart.

But still. . .when Cloud will hide Night’s moon,
When stars don’t shine in sable hue,
When Night goes dark, the demons start
To taunt the soul and terror soon
Grips the hearts and chills souls through.

Romance the Night, yet fear the Dark;
Just let Night’s moon dare hide its face,
Give evil Dark its jealous place
Where Satan’s imps will rock and roll
And lost ones’ ghosts will walk there too.

Ah, to walk amidst Night’s glow
Instead of Darkness where I go,
And let the Devil take his toll;
I rage against the dying light
That gives to fear and lives for fright.
Romance God’s Night, yet fear the Dark;
And yet, there’s naught that I might do
But ask for guidance—moon’s soft hue.
In Night, there’s angels’ song to hark,
But since the moon and stars aren’t mine
(For God will ever own the Night
And its dim light down paths unknown.)
I’d ask, for me, His Love will shine
And guide each humbled step I’d take
Along Night’s rocky roads that make
Me trip and stumble, walk again
Through Dark’s inevitable sin.

                                    --Monty Wheeler

Thursday, December 6, 2012


My response to NWCU's Wednesday Wake-up and a trip back to 1999
Nineteen ninety nine and at year’s end,
We sat and waited for the world to send
Economies and destinies to Hell;
Three zeros in the coming year would fell—
Like the mighty walls of Jericho—
The digital world we’d come to love and know.

The Wall Street icon would surely crash again;
The banks and governments would all cave in;
So long, there’d been two digits in our year.
Why would just two more generate such fear?
Oh, how our logic screamed, “You Fool!
“They saw this back when you were still in school!”

And yet, we sat where we were at and thought,
Until by midnight we were so distraught,
We felt those pins and needles in our chairs;
And yet those zeros came. . .as did more years

                                                --Monty Wheeler

Monday, December 3, 2012


it's snapshot sunday day at NWCU and here's my dark response

The sun drew back, glowed callused black today,
And left this world in muted shades of gray,
Its heart used up by mankind’s selfish way.

It cast dark eyes upon a once-clean sea,
Now spoiled with a thousand years’ debris.
How great is man?  This is his legacy.

They’d say perhaps the ozone layer’s gone;
They’d say perchance the sun is almost done;
They’d say our world’s been too much put upon.

Man walks a poisoned earth; it’s by his hand;
The sun’s grown simply tired of warming land
That’s given all; yet, greater we’d demand.

The sun drew back, glowed cold, dark black today;
No greater truth than, “Nothing gold can stay.”
And black’s the color of our sun’s last ray.

                                               --Monty Wheeler
My thanks to friend Leslie at NWCU for use of her work with negatives to such delightful effect