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The Poetry of 2016

The Poetry of 2016


In 2016 I wrote 11 poems, almost one for each month of the year. The previous year was a watershed for me. Early in the year I had four implants and went into a deep depression. I started drinking a lot more than usual, and by July I was almost suicidal. I quit drinking and although the poetry of 2015 doesn't reflect much of what was really happening in my psyche, there is a lot more hope and optimism showing in the poetry of 2016.

"Poem For the New Year 2016"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
Jan. 07, 2016 6:30am pst

Years past are faded pages in my lifebook
Crumpled edges, meaningless memories
Years future are reasons for contemplation
As the physical body ages
And the mind begins to forget more 
than it remembers

New projects taking time to plan
means all time needs to be treasured
and nothing taken for granted

Friends and family past are fading from memory
Special moments, treasured fulsome emotion
Friends future are reasons for celebration
As my auras rust and mind forgetful wanders
Even a fleeting conversation with a fellow traveler
for but a moment
or a Social Media comment stream 
on the internet
Can be a boon to creativity and inspiration

Will this fitful, pitiful life ever bear fruition?
Will the many poems for new years ever 
display answers instead of questions?
Or will the future reasons 
Become faded pages

I will steel my brow,
Command optimism 
Elicit good cheer

I will tell a joke
and hope it isn't on me
I will be, as I have been
Simply a poet, philosopher, and fool
For another day
For another year
For eternity

"Legendary Legions"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
01-19-16 6:23am pst

Throughout youth, my youth, the legends passed
in front of me
Daddy loved swing, and Mommy sang country
I learned of the legends, and loved their songs
Which spoke to so many in the Greatest Generation
And spoke to me, too, in passing
Throughout my youth, the lagends passed away
Their notes remain but their voices fade
Leaving their instruments in silent surcease

While a teen, surrounded by a seeming universe of teens
new legends arose, and they shone brighter than suns
Singers, and players, and poets and fools
Living fast in their orbits
Sometimes spinning out of control
Making beautiful music
Providing a voice for my young ge-generation

We never thought that the music would ever die
Even as some of the musicians never seemed to age past 27 years

Rock, country, pop, pure pleasure
Guitars, keyboards, sometimes strings and brassy horns
Sometimes soothing, sometimes silly, sometimes strong
Sometimes ethereal

Some ingested enhancement
And some exuded genius without

Millions of songs, millions of stars
Legendary Legions playing for the people
We listened
We swayed
We danced
We sang along

Throughout my teens, the legends passed
in front, behind, away

As a young man, and even later,
More music appeared, more legends passed
both in front and behind existence,
recording their destiny for all to hear

Now there are other generations
And other legends,
hip-hop, electronica, 
and more etceteras than one can imagine
All important, all involving, all part
of the symphony of sound
The soundtrack of our lives
Which serves to make us laugh and dance
And think and ponder, muse and mourn

Just what more can you say,
Look life in the eye and pray
Live and love just another day
As the Starman shines
and an Eagle flies away

"Someday Soon"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
4:50 am pst

Someday I swear I'll experience excitement
Someday I'll treasure love and companionship
Someday this lonesome life will bear some fruit
And short static days will turn around and flip

The days will someday be long again
The time I spend will someday be in conversation
With witty partners and fulsome friends
Burrowed frowns will shed for great elation

Someday may be only written in nonexistant calendars
Someday may be only yet in dreams
But as long as I can ponder thus this someday
Life is full and wonderful as this someday seems




"Sixty Third Birthday Verse"

Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
05-01-2016 5:49 am p.d.t.


I woke up this morning 
at around the same time I woke up for the first time 
sixty three years ago

this time I didn't cry

This isn't the sixty third verse, 
although those verses number quite many now
It is the sixty third year
on Beltane, as usual reflecting on rebirth
and the fact that I'm still here 
able to write about feelings
disappointments, celebrations
prayers, poems and promises
as I have done for over half a century

I don't want to end up like the
community of others around my home
staying indoors
possibly sickly
bemoaning a life with no excitement
and certainly no options for change
I get around
I exercise my body and my mind
Stay away from bad habits
which have eroded my circle of friends
Until I stand alone in the center

this time I laughed, albeit not out loud
Began to talk to myself again, 
but I'm good company 
I still believe

I laughed at the good tidings which fall my way
I laughed at the comedy of world politics
I laughed at truth, ethereal cogitation
I laughed at lies, misbegotten misapprehensions
Mistakes, and missing partnership 
(for life? I hope I still don't think so.)

Unlike the community of others perhaps
my existence at 63 is quite pure and healthy
When Google and Facebook and my insurance agent
wish me
many happy returns
I at least know I'm here now and able
to relish their glad tidings.

At fifty I proclaimed I was bornagain
Beginning the second half of a century of life
That means I'm now a teenager
And "puberty" is attacking me like 
a whirlwind of whattheheckishappenings

I still like to get out and walk through nature 
marvelling at sunrises sunsets
clouds flora fauna and mankind
Even with his foibles, mankind builds
and I marvel at his accomplishment

I still like to feel the weight of a book 
as the right half feels lighter and 
the left half feels heavier,
as the story progresses
hoping perhaps 
that I am still writing the pages to my book
and those collected at the end are not ready
to be written off yet
evening up the weight of life's book
for a few decades longer


I woke up this morning 
writing this poem in my head
as I took my shower and dressed 
and made my bed

I woke up this morning
that's the main part and the reason
and I greet unknown circumstance
as I have through time and season

"Earth Mother"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
05-08-16 7:11 am pdt

Mankind never worried as he lay waste to world and nation
Naive and obstinate, sure footed even as he slipped
Mankind never wavered as he put woman in her place
Chauvinistic and irrational, uncaring in his haste

Womankind never shirked as she brought man into being
Caring and wholehearty, even handed although emotional
Womankind always questioned, but for eons stayed in place
Solid Earth Mother of all the human race

Equality will occur for our Mothers, women perpetually scorned
Nine months over and over again, till man understands
I can't claim life, as if I'd never been born
Without my Mother, I'd not exist to lend womankind a hand

Poetry by MIchael F. Nyiri
05-18-16 1:30pm pdt

The hustle of mankind's life can be stopped
If for a day, an hour, or a moment
The rush of needless information can be stifled
The gnawing sense of urgency and timetables

Mankind has purposed his world
Compartmentalized and conceptualized
Circumvented, listed, and listlessly lost
Everything that is important

Stay but for a day, an hour, a moment
With the trees, the rocks, the sky
To the universal language of nature
Speaking with the wisdom of cosmic ages

The trees and the rocks have souls
And they are old souls, ancient souls
Nature lives
And teaches

If only mankind would leave 
his compartmentalized 
for a day, an hour, or a moment,
And come sit with the rocks 
and the trees
amongst Nature
And the cosmos

I, the poet, the insignificant 
memoirist, charting useless feelings
when compared to this,
sit quietly in the cathedral of wonder
I shed a few tears,
Tears which may be 
sad for humanity
But which stream like
The mighty rivers of nature
When telling me I'm as much a part
As what I witness,
When I exist with nature
in that day
that hour
that moment
That ageless natural symbiosis
Totally serene
Totally chaotic
Totally natural

"Talking to M'self Again (The Girl in Dreams Stopped Listening)
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
6:45 am pdt


I'm not afraid of getting older, 
memory colder, brave stalwart soldier
Looking in the mirror and not recognizing me,
Whose eyes are these, recognize them please!

Optimistic voices get overcome by seas
of vacuous doubts; what was I talking about?
The girls in dreams they disappeared
I fake a smile, life's wasted I'd feared

Wish that I had a world to share
And a significant other, that seemed such a bother
The dreamgirls became older wiser women
And they all fled my thoughts, faded rose rots

No, I'm not afraid of the man in the mirror
Wake up the fear or, was that what I'm here for?
He frowns as do I at the sunset of time
Unanswered questions, selfpsychiatric sessions

I'll chuckle and speak (to m'self again)
These arms will still reach, this mind will still teach
And if nobody else is here to listen 'cept me
To that choir I'll preach, from mountains to beach

I love life with a passionate universal admiration
Yet my other half broke, no soulfires to stoke
The real women and dreamgirls all turned their backs
No luggage to pack, trains run off the tracks

If I have to meet my end talking to just m'self
Without rhyming reasoner, I'm a damn good listener
But sometimes it's sad to think I'm wasting my years
Alone, lonely, still standing, but with no understanding

I'm not afraid of getting older
No real connections, uneasy directions
Talk to m'self, always said I was crazy
Those women in dreams grow consistently hazy

"I America"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri

My flag has flown 
over me
two hundred and forty years

Two hundred and forty years
Embracing diversity
Love, Peace and Harmony
Wars won and 
possibly lost

My flag has flown
over people
two hundred and forty years

Two hundred and forty years
People from all over the world
Many shades of pigment
Many sides of thought
Many ideologies
Many groups
Many countries
and Schools of Thought
Existing together
Under a vast area
of sometimes
diverting and illogical 

Yet my flag still flies
And I still stand proud
America is one
And All
And I invite 
My children to 
recognize this greatness
recognize your differences
recognize your individuality
and stop your bickering
before my 
Flag gets tired of 
having to fly 
at half staff
so often

"Drifting Deadwood"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
09-07-16 4:38 a.m. pdt

Among the sea baubles, and rocks bored with holes.
Shifting sand, damp and dark; oceanweed in rich red patches, 
Drifting deadwood arrives with the tide
What secrets are revealed as this scene it watches?

Is drifting deadwood really dead?
Or to thousands of microscopic sea creatures is it homestead?
Could the lines etched on it's surface be studied and read,
Would a world's worth of experience stand in it's stead?

Drifting deadwood washed up on the shore
Stands out for a day, or a moment in store
Serene in it's stance, somewhat solid yet sore
Tomorrow it's gone, one can't glimpse it na'more

Gaia gives up bits and parts of her soul
Drifting around, jigsaw pieces a' some past whole
Each bacteria, each worm, each part of life has it's role
Dost beauty enhance? Yes, 'tis  only nature's call

Aye, is drifting deadwood really dead?
Once a tall green tree, sculpt by the sea, grand yet in it's way
Do we pass in our haste, or do we ponder it's spread?
What tales does drifting deadwood tell, cosmic forces at play?

"What I Sometimes Miss"
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
09-24-16 4:45 pm pdt

I miss my youth. My tender, forgotten youth
My misspent misbegoten, misused youth
It's not as if I didn't know it wouldn't be around long
I realized quite early that the years got shorter
and soon I'd hear the end of my youthful song
I seized my days and wrestled with remembrance
Even as they fled, fleeting, flying quick away
My youth is past, and now I simply try not to miss 
The magnificent experience of each passing day

I miss my parents. My long gone familial life
Dinner table conversations, art, performance, daily communal life
I didn't know so long ago that I would stop hearing this tune
Family was taken for granted, a core deeply planted
which was torn from the earth far too soon
I complained far too much about parental controls
Sighed too much, cried too much, didn't pay that much attention
The family broke apart, died, and shriveled away
So now I attempt to embrace humanity as much as I can

I miss long dead friends, exciting conversation,
joking around, getting wasted, and not realizing 
the wasted remains of memory which only 
serves to make me miss them even more

I miss long gone landscapes, dead ended roadways
buildings which used to reach skyward 
and now only reap what rewards came with 
the wrecking ball
Disappearing neighborhoods 
lost landmarks
highways to here and there reduced 
to derelict detours

I sometimes miss my search for knowledge
Because even though I'm still searching, 
the knowledge I've gained 
seems to mock the search even more often

I sometimes miss my search for companionship
Because even though I'll say I'm still searching
I've possibly really given up
and at least I remain good company for myself

Yes, the more I remain in place, or start a journey, 
The more I'm on the move, or sitting solitary with my thoughts
The more
The less
The same
The different,
I will sometimes remember, and miss
Everything gone, everything here, everything wondered about
And then forgotten
I will miss
But other times
I will simply sit, stand, turn around and sigh
And give thanks that I am still able
To sometimes miss 
what I shall sometimes miss again

"Thanksgiving Prayer 2016" 
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri
11-23-16 7:30pm pst

Thankful that I'm still on the right side of the grass
Thankful that I'm still able to know what I'm thinking
Even though I seem to be less able to communicate
Thankful that I don't stammer or have memory problems in my mind
Yet ever thankful that I'm still here to experience the health 
problems which age grants
Don't want to visit the wrong side of the grass yet.

Thankful that I can laugh at the tragedy of my life
Thankful for Facebook Followers and Friends
(They don't replace the ones I used to have in real life
But they're all I have left)


Thankful for purpose, even though I've forgotten what mine was


Thankful for the long sober stretches between depressions


Thankful for optimism
I'm sure something is going to go wrong, and I'm so glad when it doesn't


Thankful for humor (Did I write that yet?)
Thankful for Google maps


I didn't think I'd make it this far 
and when I encounter someone taking walks 
along the same path as I
who are 10, 20, or even as much as 30 years older
I feel like a kid again
And I have hope


Hope, and thanksgiving
that I will gain years, 
and keep my health
and suffer the cruelties of age with grace


Hope, and thanksgiving
that someday perhaps, I shall meet my "other half" 
even if we don't have much time left when she arrives
But even if she's just "the girl in dreams" (the old girl now perhaps)
and life wasn't fated to grant me a mate
I at least can proclaim I'm my own best friend
And can be thankful for social media
Which I don't mock or disdain anymore


The Godhead and the Cosmos will merge with my psyche in due time
But hopefully that time is still a while off
And thankfully I am (though I may seem to be getting senile lately
I know that's not politically correct anymore,  but I can't remember the 
other term right now)
electric poet
still able to evoke 
the mysteries of the human mind
through my words


Thankful for this poetic conversation which has lasted 50 years
Thankful that I can still shed tears of grief and of joy

"Never Forget" (December Seventh)
Poetry by Michael F. Nyiri

Almost all gone now, like the 
last Civil War soldier 
or the last of the fighting men of 
the Great War
The last "good war"
(or so it is claimed, no war is good)
(perhaps righteous, but never good)
the war of my father
and his brethren
began quite a long time
before an attack in 
Hawaii on  
December Seventh
brought the USA 
into the fray

that terrible morning
that most dreadful day
the date which will live in infamy

December Seventh
Seventy Five Years Ago
Always Remember
Never Forget

Even as the lives 
alive on that date
die off and disappear
almost all gone now
the memory 
the history
shall never be done
should never be done

I was not one of those lives
But I bear witness through 
my father's life
and his eventual passing
into history
as are all the soldiers
from that time
into history

I shall pass
into history
at some point as well
and on some
December Seventh
Let the lives lived now
and then 
Never Forget

Poem For the New Year
Legendary Legions
Someday Soon
Sixty Third Birthday Verse
Earth Mother
Talking to M'self Again
Drifting Deadwood
What I Sometimes Miss
Thanksgiving Prayer
Never Forget
I, America
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