The Solo Performer
The tiny ballerina, her
summer run long over,
limbs brown and withered,
hanging hair disheveled,
bends stiffly at the hip,
shriveled hands stretched
to the tip of an extended toe,
frozen in a permanent pose of thanks
for praise of her last fall show
to her audience of one.
Chemotherapy is an attempt
to shrink a tumor and
prevent cancer from spreading.
When this round of chemo is over,
doctors will take him into surgery
to try to remove his pancreatic tumor.
This includes involves removal
of the head of his pancreas,
wherein his tumor lies,
a part of his small intestine,
and his gall bladder, then
some human re-plumbing is done.
The surgery will be tricky,
because as shown by CAT scan,
his tumor has exited his pancreas
and effaces his portal vein,
without which no one can live,
but he has the best of doctors.
Recovery from a successful surgery
takes almost a year, then
he will have more chemo,
plus radiation treatments,
to try to keep the cancer from returning,
which is common.
If it returns, the prognosis is not good,
as the surgery cannot be repeated.
So the questions are whether
his tumor is resectable and
his cancer will return in the
months and years to come.
Only God knows the answers,
the rest of us will have to wait
A solitary stroll along a balmy coastal shore
will provide some calming to a sore knee’s crepitation.
Trod the wet white sands for a long hike of several miles,
and use the surging surf to bring a body’s memory store
to muscles that have not been used for years in such a fashion.
Often stop and squat down for a pretty bit of flotsam,
so as to incur all of the necessary flexion;
the beach’s slanted slope will bend one leg more than the other,
but the return trip back will let the bended knee recover.
Once the trek is over, plunge headlong into a wave,
swim in churning waters unencumbered by old pain,
and breathe in deep the sea air for the total mass retain.
The King Is Dead
Once I was the King
of my own private forest,
and when I roared,
the natives ran
Now I am toothless,
clawless, and clueless;
my growl is a whimper;
my former subjects show
their disdain and contempt
that I have earned
over passed years.
I am often told
what not to say;
my words and deeds
my thoughts worth naught,
my complaints rejected,
my laments ignored.
I ingest what I’m afforded;
I must not have or take
an extra piece of cheese;
my red meat is restricted:
I am not allowed to eat
the last remaining taco
that no one else wants.
When cinema and other media
of entertainment became violent
to the point of being bloody
disgusting, so-called experts
and other nefarious do-gooders
voiced concerns that these excesses
would inure children to violence,
and that mayhem and murder
would reach unprecedented levels
as a sociological phenomenon.
The solution they derived
was the banning of toy guns;
but for as long as there have been steel barrels,
black and (later) gray gunpowder,
and projectiles to fire at foes,
little boys have possessed weapons
imagined from their hands and limbs,
fingers with which to point pistols,
hands and arms to lob grenades,
and shoulders and arms to position and fire
rifles, machine guns, and bazookas.
Perhaps we should have considered
the cutting off of fingers and arms.
We then gave the children
electronic Nintender babysitters,
and they have developed this technology
so spectacularly that entire villages,
cities, realms, countries, civilizations,
planets, solar systems, and/or galaxies
can be destroyed and stricken from
existence in a single sitting.
It is no doubt a coincidence
that some thirty-plus years later,
that violent crime rate has exploded,
and the murder rate is through the roof.
Now there have been invented
helmets and (later) goggles
that will take the user into
a new and foreign reality
which can be changed
to a different locale
by adjusting the settings.
This particular form of play
is certainly far less harmful
than the ingestion of certain
chemical compounds or psycho-
tropic plants for the seeking
of new and wildly different
states of separate realities,
but nonetheless constitutes an overlooking
of a fundamental truth of human
physiology and its kindred spirit:
that we all experience virtual realities
of infinitely varying natures,
finding expression running the gamut
of all human emotion, behavior, and/or
state of being, each and every time
we lay down our heads to sleep.
We sometimes carry over these
subconscious realities into wakening,
but it is the individuals that cannot ignore
these often deviant thoughts
thrumming within their heads
when not sleeping that are truly
John Lambremont, Sr. is a poet and writer from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, U.S.A., where he lives with his wife and their little dog. John holds a B.A. in Creative Writing and a J.D. from Louisiana State University. He is the former editor of Big River Poetry Review, and has been nominated for The Pushcart Prize. John’s poems have been published internationally in many reviews and anthologies, including Pacific Review, Flint Hills Review, The Minetta Review, Sugar House Review, and The Louisiana Review. John’s full-length poetry collections include “Dispelling The Indigo Dream” (Local Gems Poetry Press 2013), “The Moment Of Capture” (Lit Fest Press 2017), “Old Blues, New Blues” (Pski’s Porch Publishing 2018), and “The Book Of Acrostics” (Truth Serum Press 2018). His chapbook is “What It Means To Be A Man (And Other Poems Of Life And Death)”, published in 2014 by Finishing Line Press. John enjoys music, playing the guitar, fishing, and old movies. He has battled pancreatic cancer since 2018.