An Extremely Late Friday Afternoon at the Haikulodeon

Here’s this week’s heap of haikus:

Thus each day must end,
to let each night begin so
we may build new dreams.

(Photo courtesy Kristina Rebelo)

Lying in the sun’s
the universal sign of
complete contentment.

alternate version:

Lying in the sun
with your best friend.  Life is good …
and sealed with a nap.

(Photo courtesy of Kristina Rebelo)

Standing on a rock,
and seeing her reflection …
Miss Egret regrets.

(Photo courtesy of Kristina Rebelo)

A sleeping dog guards
the pumpkin harvest while the
leaves sneak from the trees.

He buried his fear
in the pleats of mother’s skirt.
( … and wiped his nose too.)

Fear is a fabric
that folds under stress, and when
in hot water, shrinks …

tanka haiku: When you first awake,
check your bedroom for feathers,
lost from angel’s wings.

They may, of course, appear in
the form of small children’s toys.

A murder of crows,
An exultation of larks,
a leap of leopards …

Even gaggles of geese must
admit James Lipton’s clever.


Will you still feel blessed
when your ‘new address’ tells folks
you’re under a rest?

(Photo courtesy Tom Contrino)

In a gin tizzy,
she drove her tin lizzie, now
her name’s etched in stone.

(Photo courtesy of Tom Contrino)

When Mr. Hu died,
his orchestra went with him.
(cymbal-ic gesture.)

(Photo courtesy Tom Contrino)

Poor dear Hannah went
to her grave not knowing she
was a palindrome.

(Photo courtesy Tom Contrino)

To make matters worse,
The late John Doe had the wrong
finger mark his grave.

(Photo courtesy Tom Contrino)

Off in a corner,
sits a quiet little girl,
who dreams of horses.

The streets of this town
may not be paved with gold, but
they get where they’re going …

Leaves swirled around her,
tumbling in her wake like
fawning sycophants.

 If you choose to use
a magnifying glass, know
that you will find flaws.

 And then, a rainbow
swept across the darkened sky,
for the storm had ended.

(Photo courtesy Kristina Rebelo)

I hear distant trains
and think of riding boxcars …
whistles on the wind.

Sure, we tried again,
but it is never the same …
re-kindling love.

tanka haiku for Octoberblest:

Blessed in many ways,
some tend to focus mainly
on their suffering.

  That is not the way to live;
Focus on what drives your heart.

I have two memories that popped into my head this week  …

#1     So … I’m awake late the other night and watching TCM, which is showing Two Tickets to Broadway, with Janet Leigh and Tony Martin … and Tony Martin is doing a number which is a takeoff of Pagliacci, and he’s dressed in the classic clown outfit and I start to remember … an old stage hand at NBC performing a number from Pagliacci on the old Tom Snyder Tomorrow show which held an NBC Employee Talent Show every year.  And that sparked my memory of a song I wrote being performed on that same show … I was in between NBC jobs (I worked there nearly 9 years altogether between 1975 and 1985.) and I had written the lyrics for a song with one of my NBC co-workers called the NBC Radio Announcer Song.   It was a comedic Andrews Sisters number with me doing some old-time Radio Announcer shtick.    (FYI, I’ve done some announcing work in the past, including the Clio Awards one year when they were held at Lincoln Center … but that’s another story … )

Anyway, long story short, we auditioned and were selected to be on the show, but since I wasn’t currently working at NBC, I got to sit in the audience and watch as NBC Staff Announcer Bill Wendell did my part.  It was a hoot, the old stage-hand doing Pagliacci was terrific and our Radio Announcer song went over great.   One of the prizes for all the people chosen to be on the show was that they got to also perform one night at the club, Catching a Rising Star.  Bill Wendell wasn’t interested, so I got to perform the song that night along with my co-writer and our three “Andrew Sisters”,  We were a big hit.  While we were basking in the applause, the guy running the show ran up to us and said, “That was great!  Do something else!  … Naturally, we were thrilled … except … we didn’t know anything else.  We had written and rehearsed the one number and that was it.  We never dreamed anyone would ask us for more.  So we sheepishly told the man, “We don’t have anything else.  That’s all we have prepared.”  He looked at us bewildered for a moment and then said, “Well, do it again!”   We weren’t sure about that, but decided, what the heck and we did it again … the applause was only slightly less, and I’m sure if we had done it a few more times we could have wiped out the applause altogether … But never mind that.   The moral, of course, is … Always have something else prepared in case you are a big frigging hit.  🙂  

#2:  Geoffrey Holder- RIP

Around 1980, during one of my two stints working as a touring actor for Pepsi-Cola,  I got to meet Geoffrey Holder.   My job involved going around to high schools and performing in a multi-media show.  It was part of Pepsi’s school assembly program and I was one of 8-10 actors that criss-crossed the country performing in junior highs and high schools.  (Don’t laugh, it got me my Actors Equity card!)  My tour schedule took me from Northernmost Maine to Southern Mississippi. The show was supposedly educational, but was really just an excuse for getting Pepsi’s name and image into the minds of the school kids.   As the M.C., I would interact with two synchronized movie screens.  Geoffrey Holder was the person on film that we would interact with.    We rehearsed up at the Pepsi headquarters in Purchase, NY, and for our final dress rehearsal, Geoffrey Holder actually came to see us and I was chosen to be the actor to represent the group and perform the show for him.   He sat in the large conference room where we had put up the “set” and laughed loudly at all the cheap shtick that we had come up with to make it appear his on-screen image and I were actually talking to each other, and after it was over, he came over and told me how much he enjoyed my performance.  He was very gracious as I had messed up a few of the cues, but never mind that.  It was show business.  

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