When I am dead

writing in airplanes

Place these flowers
upon my chest
and lay me to rest
don’t forget to say
a few words
over whatever is left

Do remember to say
that I was swell
a hell of a friend
kind to animals
good with children
and always on time

A big hearted fellow
larger than life
good sense of humor
laughing at death
a man to remember
until you forget

©Daniel von der Embse

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Great Ocean Road

Aside

Return Address: Earth

On January 28, Uli and I took a day trip to the Great Ocean Road.  It was a long, beautiful day.  I had never seen a coastline like this.  The limestone cliffs towered over the coast, creating beautiful scenery.  The Twelve Apostles were magnificent.  I didn’t realize how large the formations were.  There aren’t many exciting stories to tell, other than the adorable curious koala who climbed down a tree to investigate our tour, coming very close to us.  I’ll let the pictures do the talking for this one:

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pelicans prefer pecan pie

.
pairing pelicans
flying high to their love nest
glide over palm trees

kite flies above birds
” we’re gonna last forever ”
” best days of our life ”

want to jump the fence
see how the other half lives
he’ll bring back pictures

taste better nibbles
cabanas like Burn Notice
musical daylight

giant chess pieces
middle of saltwater pool
as tall as i am

on the oceanfront
six thousand dollars a week
princes send camels

south bound wagon wheels
things that you can do without
” any way you feel ”

let me count the ways
we don’t like country music
don’t ” rock me mamma ”

billy jean rocks you
” forty days and forty nights ”
M J white glove test

” stop and eat your hamburger
that’s what’s the matter with you
you’re hungry ”

as the rain pours down
in seventeen syllables
grandmother speaking

” Jake eat the burger
and then we will go dive in ”
silly little prune

the pool is like glass
they made a break for it
i have an umbrella

only passenger
gentleman dries red golf cart
your carriage awaits

.

seaside feng shui

“walk it by yourself”
to the left and the right
sugar bear’s too tired

feng shui little boy
rearranging furniture
half size of my chair

what strength you have
tiny three year old moving every
chair except mine

everyone with their hat
feeling like i’m at the
kentucky derby

men charleston chapeau
women wear giant straw hats
pink over forty

my father always
“don’t you need a little hat”
well maybe i do

winter and summer
seven to thirty six years
i’m not starting now

even though last year
someone gave me a gift hat
rather have gift horse

large owner’s closet
someone left me new dog bowls
and a brand new leash

but there was no dog
looked everywhere for puppy
not one to be found

are you buying
someone else’s troubles when you buy
furnished condo

not like an old car
only problem getting rid of theirs
bring in yours

saxophone calling
“we’re in this world together”
come float with music

once i bought a hat
went to orthodox synagogue
rabbi said no

you want to marry?
no i certainly do not
i was just divorced

apparently
only married women wear hats
i’m conservative

of course not with hats
i purposely bought that hat
wear to orthodox

men and women can’t
sit together because men
can’t control themselves?

oh the mishegas
if i couldn’t sit with my
mother and father!

i would shoot myself
thank goodness born when i was
feel tallis tassels

orthodox parents
basically that’s all there was
when they were little

luckily they grew up
across the street from each other
in greenville

holding hands services
in the sixties after
conservative built

twenty years marriage
then they’re allowed to sit
together services

but not very long
only thirty nine years
til death destroys numbers

haiku hushpuppy

lizard gazing through
you have nothing to fear from me
tiny fellow

save your fear for bird
you hide from him then you run
to catch up with him

haiku hushpuppy
i only wanted six
they gave me seventeen

bird bee me
equidistant fence cement pool
they don’t tell me stories

when birds and bees meet
they’re supposed to talk about
the birds and the bees

solo clear blue pool
she has never sung before
and forgot the words

“don’t worry be happy”
twice the size of other pools
warm pool cool wind

middle name worry
entire pool audience
splash yourself clapping

hardee’s hamburgers
charcoal broiled burgers hot dogs
saltwater fragrance

you can see the wind
blowing the smoke in the
opposite direction

yet entire pool
smells like hardee’s hamburgers
superhuman sense

three footlong hot dogs
taking up most of the space
in my mind and grill

.

summer kites champagne raccoons

red and blue circles
intertwining kite tails
circle each other

pirate voyage plane
too much action in the sky
flying above kite

parasailers float
“hot blooded check it and see”
playing hotel left

twin banana boats
do not stand between the signs
exit or enter

you are too cruel
if you play ” don’t be cruel”
again carolina girl

hot donna summer left
right side “don’t be cruel”
yesterday’s choices

donna summer wins
we “celebrated the times”
didn’t “back it up”

champagne five raccoons
will not celebrate on my
roof top anymore

nor hurricanes
entering through the baseball diamond
cutout in roof

bright green bobblehead
lizard bobbing head three times
every step he takes

chase your peanut butter
crackers with pretzel rod
nice hawaiian punch

Blue Jay

standing top pool shed
bossing me around
i don’t know what you’re saying


*
(lizard’s first appearance
since he was a baby
dancing poet mate

knowing three lizards
they’re all different colors
so we don’t get confused)

polygamist trio of quacks

polygamist ducks
mallard with his two wives
float shallow to six feet

sipping pool water
swimming around outer edge
six inches apart

bathing time deep end
stopping for man chat with beer
hearing not liking

one wife jumps on deck
turning her back alcohol
ruffling feathers

all three shake shake shake
dancing without music
noisy feathers flapping

quarter hour floats
eventually three napping
wrong twisted slumber

contortionist sect
chiropractor’s dream house call
C one through seven

Ipanema man
every time he walks by
all three jump into pool

why must you get wet
just because someone walks by
you three silly geese

.

navy, seals & navy seals 6:30-7:30

i wasn’t too happy
wednesday spraying sunscreen
on all his muscles

blocking the landing
i stood far away
building muscles of my own

holding food water
air flip flops V.S. beach bag
pyramid pool life

“i was once on swim
team at UCLA
guy kicked me in the face”

telling his daughter
her girlfriend twenties
how he was once navy seal

not twenty four hours
was i asked if navy seals
can say that they are

have only heard people
say that they were after
they had retired

he looked at me and
said “i like seals” and smiled
he knew i like seals

you like animals
speak in haiku i listen
army, reserves, seal

life of pool party
wins racing twenty year olds
people are cheering

twenty third floor next door
he is so happy but
they cheered for wedding

he knew: i did not
would have figured this out
in an hour or two

he asked if people
cheered at my wedding how did
he know i had one?

i turned my head to think
they way he later did
sideways cannonballs

landing on his head
staying underwater so long
only six feet

i said yes they cheered
but i’m jewish & they cheer
when grooms break the glass

irish italian
speaking with scottish accent
it’s like they just met

daughter didn’t know
anything he’d ever done
neither did his son

ESP vanished
after water board training
i mean water borne

tactical navy
unter wasser training the girls
then turns to me

and said you are next
just me floating on pasta
bye bye ESP

6/20
.

5:30 -7:30 MJ & Stevie Wonder

he’s back on the fence
bobblehead lizzard eight times
both watching plane kite

each time flies downward
you hear special sound effects
nhr nhr nhrrr nhrr nhrrr

our eyes are dizzy
too fast for me and lizard
flying rings around

lizard uses whisk
red ring around his collar
doesn’t get red out

he is all puffed up
verblungit is yiddish word
my father uses

no it means confused
ungebluzen and pig means
all puffed up in cheeks

i’m always confused
it should be my middle name
change it from shopping

nervous palm trees
swaying shaking like hula dancers
breezy june days

quiet dove pool shed
watching the waves go by
must be happening spot

pool to yourself
music and wild animals
no splashing dinnertime

“never can say goodbye
no no no no i never
can say goodbye”

now it’s time to go
he “shot a man in reno”
rather fall in sea

johnny cash was
a murderer on columbo
please sir far away

that’s so much better
“signed sealed delivered i’m yours”
sing stevie wonder

on the way back
teenager holds pool door open
“are you coming in”

when i shook my head no
he so sadly said “awwwww”
still wet from mean sea

seven outdoor pools
why would you want one indoors
neither rain nor cold

.

earlier that day, tom not tim duncan

wearing red one piece
she’s sipping red daiquiri
white towel on head

just as you are thinking
it’s about 2:30
man shouts to his wife

“what time is it honey”
at that very minute
she said 2:30

he’s wearing a watch
must not be waterproof
memory bad as mine

“you don’t like go carts
that’s on my bucket list lucy
love the grand prix”

i love pontiac
tom duncan pontiac
greer s.c.

“lucy was an
exceptionally clean baby”
“found out it was us”

“they adapt to you
the third one does what we do”
“first is the hardest”

“it’s about a
twenty minute ride to grand prix
i bet she’ll pass out”

“especially if
we put something in her belly
got some CHILI”

best bucket list
i will not kick the bucket
are numbers one and last

“i want to put on
my my my my my boogie shoes
boogie with you”

6/4 before ringo