Poems of the Week-Karen Carpenter’s Merry Christmas Darling & Shut Down

Merry Christmas Darling

Tears each follicle

Exposes goosebumps

She lifts the Jewish holiday


Chanukah on Long Island

Step child holiday

With an electric menorah

Eight days a week of gifts

Still jealous of the gentile

Bombardment of presents

The refrain of

Jews killed Jesus

Filled my grade school taunts

The only Jew on the Long Island block

In 1958 no Dreidel songs

Karen’s vocal warmth

Wipes away

The bristling anxiety

Starvation death

Carves a pitted stomach ache

Conversational phrasing

Parsing each syllable

The Christmas cliché’s


Ms. Carpenter expunges

Bones knitting without pain

Corneas reflect

Lungs gulp

Fingertips sizzle

A thoughtless state

Level the playing field

For three minutes and five seconds

Space empties

Urging a still

Pausing a grief

Belching a spirit

Echoing a closure

Jesus wasn’t a carpenter.

Merry Christmas, Darling – The Carpenters – YouTube

Shut Down

Christmas Eve

Downs the city

Establishments locked.

Quiet streets resemble

Aftermath of a war.

Life is stilled.

“Merry Christmas” spoken to me

Feels hollow once a year.

As a Jew I’m not offended

It’s become a secular greeting.

Christmas day

Is Jewish 24 hours

Of Film binging

Chinese food leaps

No gifts please

Not even white elephants

Freely sharing gratitude to

To my sanity makers


Times delivery

Housekeeper Gladys

Hair stylist-Mr. Lee

I treasure experiences

Possessions don’t have meaning

Except for playing

My Streisand

Record collection

And Eight-millimeter

Family history

Gut wrenching happiness

And don’t get me started

On New-Year’s eve

And resolutions.


2 thoughts on “Poems of the Week-Karen Carpenter’s Merry Christmas Darling & Shut Down

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