T.O.A.S.T.: Tasting Oranges And Salmon Together


The following poems were in the Saipan Tribune during Thanksgiving week in 2017. Before we say grace for just a few minutes, let us contemplate world hunger and think about what we can do to help. After all, “We Are the World.”
A Thanksgiving Breath Before Death 
My senior citizen spin on Shakespeare’s sonnet 73
I behold my time of death in some eternal cold
limbs lame, knees shot, fingers gnarled and froze
most of my songs sung, teenage tales all told
requiem for my frame cawed by a murder of crows
on sea cliffs I welcome the coming of night
watch the moon slowly rise in the east
and darkness as the moon slips out of sight
no worries about eternal night in the least
what is left of my tropical life is glowing coals
a low *tangantangan fire of burning embers
now it is heaven or hell and roasting souls
Thanksgiving has life way beyond Novembers
gone for good now age saps life and strength
my love for all that lives will stay the length
 (* tangantangan is “a large bush  that proliferates
on many of the high islands in Micronesia. Good
 for cattle feed and fuel.” Chamorro-English Dictionary)
From Great Pie To Grilled Octopi
My mouth waters when I can smell an apple rhubarb pie
so it was when I a child so is it now when I am wider
so be it when my eyes can not tell a spider from a fly
or octopus from squid and what it tastes like inside there.
Fina’denne’ or Tabasco Sauce
pika fina’denne’ or Tabasco sauce
get some mannok take your pick
some red rice and make it quick
so many depend upon a hot pepper sauce
splashed without restraint on some fried chicken

Giving Thanks on an Island Coral Road
right now a rooster is crowing
many hours before dawn
a schizzy fighting rooster
moonlight on my neighbors lawn
right now streaming radio
a channel of classical baroque
harpsichords and lutes play
florescent spiral lights broke
right now fresh deer meat
from my oldest adopted son
purple Philippine eggplant
large Chinese squash just one
light rain from the monsoon
banana leaves play a soft tune.

Joey ‘Pepe Batbon’ Connolly, Special to the Saipan Tribune
Joey “Pepe Batbon” Connolly is a retired teacher and has been named a poet laureate of Tinian. He has taught English in CNMI public schools for the past 30 years. He has also taught in Alaska, New Orleans, and Las Vegas.

Joey 'Pepe Batbon' Connolly, Special to the Saipan Tribune

Related Posts

Disclaimer: Comments are moderated. They will not appear immediately or even on the same day. Comments should be related to the topic. Off-topic comments would be deleted. Profanities are not allowed. Comments that are potentially libelous, inflammatory, or slanderous would be deleted.