Phony Foam Phone

Drawing of a girl holding a large, fake phone

Get that phony foam phone
away from me,
since I gotta call
Frank in Philadelphia,
on a real phone.
We’re supposed to go
fishing on Phil’s farm.
Where’s my cell phone?
I put it here a minute ago.
You didn’t sell it, did you?
Frankly, I don’t know what the heck
you’re doing with that goofy
phony foam phone anyway.


Copyright © 2020 Dave Williams. This poem is in my book, The Dancing Fish.

Seeing ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’

by Sigmund/Unsplash

Grown-ups have more power than children in making many decisions — like where to live — and some grown-ups have a great deal of power — like a captain in the military — but a child can have the power to conjure fantastical creatures and talk with them, creatures inspired by the fairy tales she loves to read: printed words peel off pages then flit around then transform into a faun, greedy toad, monster with eyes on his hands, which caused me to wonder why the girl would imagine such creatures and not an array of friendly ones (graceful unicorn and teasing, loving wood sprites), but then I realized she is following the pattern of fairy tales, which don’t describe kids floating on ice-cream clouds of easy lives, but who need to face nasty witches and trolls — so the girl would create similar tests for herself, offering the chance to become the brave heroine who deals with nasty creatures by besting them or eluding them.


copyright © 2021 Dave Williams

Nightmare Beast

The nightmare
embraces her regularly,
a lover she does not want,
nor does she ever want the
beast of the dream
to catch her:
its thrashing
in the forest
is so loud
she can hardly hear
the heaving of her breath
as she runs/stumbles/careens
around trees,
always hoping
to find a safe place,
but the only thing seen
are the beast’s
glowing green eyes
when she glances back
which makes her
speed up in the
retreat into darkness.


copyright © 2021 Dave Williams

Post Apocalypse

Signs of emptiness
and destruction
increased as they
approached the city
burned cars
houses of broken windows
and open doors.
People in masses
had fled
for what seemed safer places.
“The worst is yet to come,”
the group’s leader said,
and the followers
were on greater alert
for the swift
and deadly creatures.

Suspense of Ellipses

Three dots in a queue,
as if waiting for a turn
to gaze into the white abyss
of the page or screen.

What will emerge from
the depths of that milken sea?
Friendly or raging faces?
A hand to grab my throat,
or one to give me a high five?
A digital guide to take me
into the world of bytes,
or a digital moper complaining
about working hard from
the many requests of users like me?

Our imaginations can rush
into wild visions,
from realistic to impossible
(or nearly so).

Like when you’re strolling
in a new strange bustling city,
and despite your smartphone
smartly showing you
the map of streets,
it can’t show you what walks
(or slithers stomps creeps)
on those streets,
so as you turn the corner
at each intersection,
you could
stand face to face
with…


copyright © 2021 Dave Williams

Boat Delivery

Down the sidewalk from my house,
a few blocks away,
a boat rests on a trailer
next to a truck parked in the driveway.

I guess the neighbor
bought the boat
from a boat store,
but I like to imagine
a massive wave
carried the boat from the lake
and left it here.

Of course,
no fishes or people
were harmed in the wave’s crash.
The fishes that were in the wave
took a bus back to the lake.
I doubt they had money for bus fare,
so maybe fish can ride buses for free.


Copyright © 2020 Dave Williams. This poem is in my book, The Dancing Fish.