A Long Way, Baby

I’ve come a long way, baby,
Still got a long way to go.
Every time I think I’m there,
I find myself laid low

Try to rise above the hate,
Ignore the arrows and slings.
They go low, I try going high,
But, damn, their insults sting.

These days of alternate truths,
Lies, if truth be told,
Just wear me out in spirit,
Got me feeling old

But I have come a long way
And I’ll keep traveling on
The road often will be rough
And I’ve got skills to hone.

Slimy Lies

Like multi jointed worms, oozing from the earth after a thunderous summer storm, slimy lies wend their way from

Dark places of hiding, feeding on hate and prejudice until the traction they gain propels them through the conscienceless

Oral orifices of greedy politicians. Alternative facts, misrepresentations, broken promises, all squirm from their tongues.

Lost in Time

Lost in Time

by Leslie Noyes

We scarcely notice the low-flying pterodactyls skimming inches above the trees nowadays.

Likewise, the roar of Tyrannosaurus Rex barely registers in our collective consciousness.

But we’ve begun to feel a change in the climate, colder winters, hotter summers, raging storms year ’round,

And the drums of war are heard pounding across oceans, and from our own great shores destruction rains down.

What have we lost in time? Our connections were severed when we fell through this warp in the universe.

Survival first, right? Despite the despot in the tree fort, we will carry on, only later to discover what we’ve lost.

On the Cusp

I’m on the cusp of nothing
Hanging on a thread,
Every day seems pregnant
With a certain kind of dread.

Headlines scream, portending
Tales of glee or maybe gloom,
Depending on one’s politics
Seen as bonus or as doom.

So here we stand in limbo
One foot toeing on the ledge,
While the other seeks purchase
Having fallen off the edge.

Excoriate

Excoriate is one of those wonderful words that comes close to being onomatopoeic, at least in my mind.


One cannot say excoriate without making the harsh, almost abrasive sound reminiscent of sandpaper on wood. The word is one I find myself using often these days, more for its secondary definition than its primary; although, I can make both work in this poem.

                          EXCORIATE

Come clean, down to the brass tacks with steel wool, superfine grit sandpaper, and elbow

Grease. We hold these truths to be self evident, you elitist bastards, that ALL humans

Equally created have an irrefutable right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Try as you might you cannot scrub these words from the collective memory of this country.

Drinking Wine and Taking Stock

Drinking Wine and Taking Stock
By Leslie Noyes

It’s late on this cold Sunday night
My team is losing, and I’m taking stock
Who out there understands my plight
I drink wine and watch the clock.

Fake news, I’ve heard, is killing us
Our democracy barely surviving now
And while truth is worthy of a fuss
At present, veracity has bowed out.

Marches are planned, vigilance urged
I take heart in good people on my side
Senators on speed dial hopefully heard
The earnestness with which I cried.

Politics: What’s Words With Friends Got To Do With It?

The 2016 election was a soul sucker. It was like carrying a baby for nine months and after 36 hours of labor having the doctor announce, “Congratulations, it’s a full grown rattlesnake!” 

On the one hand, you’re glad it’s all over, while on the other hand you wonder how long it’ll be before your baby delivers the lethal bite. Ah! Good times. 


Thank goodness for diversions like Words With Friends. Currently I have 21 games in progress, and any time there’s a lull in the action I start another one. Right now, I don’t even care if I win or lose. It’s the distraction from current events that counts.

The president-elect names a white supremacist as his chief strategist and senior counselor? I find a way to play a word containing both z and v.

A woman who doesn’t support public schools is named Secretary of Education? No worries, I play “teazles” for 182 points, and I don’t care that I have no idea what it means!*

I hear that Trump is refusing to take security briefings? Ok, I cried, but then I went on to play “equinoxes” and temporarily forgot that we have elected a lightweight to the highest office in the free world.

Reality bites right now. I think I’ll go start another game.

*verb archaic: 

teazle 

1. raise a nap on (cloth) with or as if with teasels.

You Don’t Get to Decide

In response to one of my Facebook posts about the increasing number of hate crimes committed since Trump’s electoral college win of the election:

I obscured the friend’s name to protect her privacy. I’ve known her since kindergarten and we’ve managed to remain friends even though we are on opposite ends of the political spectrum.

The thing is, I’ve gotten several comments like this, and my first thought is, how dare they?

I don’t think I’ve ever told anyone to get over something they’re feeling intensely. Maybe I’ve thought the words, but I would never presume to tell them that they don’t have the right to grieve or to feel something.

After my mother’s funeral, after everyone except my dad, my brothers and their wives, along with my husband and I had left the church Daddy pulled us all together in a massive hug and told us he loved us. As we all sobbed he reminded us to always tell our spouses that we loved them. We took a private moment to grieve as a family.

Later I received pointed criticism from someone outside my immediate family. Apparently it was inexcusable that we’d kept everyone waiting for a few extra minutes. You know what? Screw them. 

That time was a part of our grieving and part of the way we found the strength to move on. My family doesn’t always speak about its deepest feelings, and to have denied my dad that moment with us would have been a terrible mistake. 

No one gets to decide how I grieve. No one. Not a Facebook friend, not a family member, not a co-worker, not a smug acquaintance. I’ll be ok, but today, I’m still grieving. So back off. Seriously.

Peace? Yes, peace, people.

Rally Sign

Great things were happening in Tallahassee today. 

Tim Kaine came to rally Florida voters to vote early.


Tim is a great speaker and immensely likable. The crowd was huge, so I didn’t get very close. Thank goodness for zoom lenses!

The most moving part of the afternoon, though, was seeing Gabby Giffords and hearing her say she couldn’t wait to speak the words, “Madame President.” 

Speaking clearly is still a struggle for former representative Giffords, who was shot and nearly killed by a gunman at an event in her home state of Arizona in 2011. The woman is an inspiration and a tireless fighter for common sense gun regulations. 


Below, Giffords and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly.


The energy at the rally was inspiring. Since it was held on the campus of Florida State University a great many of those in attendance were college students who were excited about casting their first votes ever.

Loved this young woman’s shirt.


Pre-rally college students discussed their plans to go vote after the rally.

The line went on and on. Everyone was pumped up. Fired up; ready to vote.

I stood in line with these three adorable students. They thought I was in my 40’s. 


I’ve already voted. I’m always overcome by emotion when I realize what a privilege it is to cast a vote in this country. Even if you are a Republican, even if we disagree, I hope you exercise your right to vote. And then we all need to be prepared to accept the results. 

This has been a divisive campaign. Harsh words have been exchanged–I’ve certainly not minced any syllables. But for my part, if Trump wins this election I will accept his presidency as the voice of a majority of the people. I would hope that he and his supporters will be as gracious if Hillary wins. 

Peace, people. Really.