The Tower Journal

Mike Perkins


I’m That Old Guy

today I figured out
I’m that old guy
the one you see
putzing around
wearing baggy shorts
a baseball hat
comfortable shoes with socks
what you can't hear
is that I am
walking in cadence
to some inner rhythm
listening and watching
what is going on
in the hear and now
rather than electronically distracted
the point is the trip
rather than getting there
what you don’t see
is that while
I seem to be traveling alone
my beloved travel companions
past and present
are keeping with me
a silent company

The Operetta of Night

an operetta
in the cool
of the night theater
the crickets sing
the plants swoon
a discordant cicada accompaniment
sophisticates the rhythm
between overtures
distant sirens
pray a cappella
we wait
and listen
in reserved seats


we are tethered to
and radio waves
all of different lengths
that pulse, dance, and live
a separate life
vestiges of raw resources
and information
which is metered out to us
pimped, pumped and transmitted
and through us
and these things
have a secret life
like demigods
with their own attendants
who serve them
as house slaves
while we heed
the demand for tribute
or face

When the Rain Came

when the rain came
I was out driving about
carousing and contributing
to the global shame
this lightly toasting
of the earth that turns
the amber waves of grain
rather brown and stunted

when the rain came
it was a humid relief
of cooling drops
which were absorbed
hastily into the hard
dry packed earth
splatting on the brittle grass
dripping into the cracks

when the rain came
I knew it would
not be enough for everything
but perhaps enough
for some things
while we adjust to
betrayal which denied

Copyright © 2016 Mike Perkins

Mike Perkins lives and writes in Columbia, Missouri. Influences include Langston Hughes, Charles Bukowski, and the Beats.

The Tower Journal
Winter  2016