Author: Michael Konik

The Better Angels Soundtrack

It’s been nearly five years since our favorite singer, Charmaine Clamor, released a new album. In the interim, she’s taken her much-noted talent and made it deeper, stronger, richer, imbuing her expressive voice with enhanced gravity. On “The Better Angels,” Charmaine sings 11 songs of hope, all of them connecting in  some way to the higher...

Poem: Two Beans

  Two reluctant beans Stalwart in their pod Refused to jump into the jar below Where thousands like them lay in wait The aging man The aging boy The coddled son who never fully recovered from the inconsolable shock of discovering He cannot have everything he wants The former conquistador The recently retired lothario The...

Poem: Guilty

  I’m off parole I’m on the dole I’m on patrol for deep-fried dough The initial superficial deal was hastily rejected but a subtle plea bargain was readily accepted Conciliatory counsel bounced me to a flea market where a meal was haggled over so some would get less and one a bit more I ended...

Poem: The Right Kind of Person

If you’re the kind of chappie who believes in predestination, a Calvinist narrative to be unspooled one frame at a time, this poem is not for you. If you are the kind of lassie who believes in free will, a steadfastly laissez-faire Locked fantasy to be imagined and enlivened one moment at a time, this...

Poem: Never Lonely

  Now that I’m alone with my thoughts Now that I’m alone, with my thoughts Now that I’m alone. With my thoughts   Nothing has changed from the moment before Nothing has changed from the moment, before Nothing has changed. From the moment before   I was in a crowd acutely aware of my solitude...

Poem: Go On

How do you go on when every morning brings news of the intolerable, the intolerable that we all tolerate? How do you consciously continue the divine comedy, momentarily detouring Dante’s hoary inferno infested with infamy and ferocious flames, braising the bottoms of all who perpetrate the unallowable? How do you smile while the unacceptable must...

Poem: Beautiful World

Sitting on a bench beside a Scottish canal, watching the locks rising and the Lochs glowing he crossed his legs and placed his hands upon worn corduroy wales that had seen much of the civilized world. “It’s a beautiful world,” he said, smiling, an eternal boy peering from behind octogenarian eye-creases.  “It’s a beautiful world....

Poem: Needed

When a refrain becomes a din flooding the eternal internal monologue with variations of “What have I accomplished?” That is when you know the looking-back-on-my-life process has officially begun. A puff of smoke, and then a crack. If you’ll step this way, just over here, I’ll tell you secrets that everyone knows. How charming now...

Every Man Has a Price

Here’s a list of several countries: Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, and the United Arab Emirates. What do they all have in common – besides being among the worst human rights offenders on the planet? Their enthusiastic embrace of American values? Their love of liberty and freedom of speech? Here’s a list of several financial institutions:...

The State of New Music

All is well. If you can avoid televised singing contests (among other depressing purveyors of nicely packaged sweet nothings), you realize that music, genuinely new and never heard-before music, is being composed and produced and distributed at unprecedented levels. So much of it is good — in all that imprecise word’s manifestations. There’s the straight-ahead virtuosity...