Tag Archives: good vs. evil

#134: Good Devil, Bad Devil (a mostly found poem)


I love it that this guy,
a Fresno, California,
Salvation Army volunteer,
found $125,000 that fell
from a Brinks truck on Tuesday,
and he gave it all back.
Joe Cornell, in rehab, with just $1
in his pocket for lunch that day,
told the Fresno Bee he began to shake
when he came upon the loot.
“Everything was going through my mind —
the good devil/bad devil thing. What to do?”
I love most that he talked about
that whole good devil, bad devil thing,
as if both the good parts and the
bad parts of our moral conscience
were somehow devils.
I especially like the idea
that even the good in us
is in fact a kind of devil,
so that, now, when we do
a truly good, unselfish,
compassionate thing for someone,
we can say, in all sincerity,
that the devil made us do it,
the good devil.




Filed under Poetry

#101: The Snake or the Dove

Once again, happy National Poetry Month, thanks for visiting, and welcome to the first installment of a poem-a-day for the entire month for NaPoWriMo! Let the games begin!  Let the poems spew forth from the generative void that is Michael Jarmer’s brain.  And let us begin by following the prompt on the NaPoWriMo website for the first day of these festivities.  It directs us to a site called Bibliomancy Oracle.  It works like a literary Magic 8 Ball–you ask it a question, push the orb button, and it spews out an answer in the form of a quote from a book–complete with the author’s name and the work from which it comes.  It’s awesome.  Check it out.  So, my question for the Oracle was simply, what should I write about for my first poem of the month?  The answer:

The Snake or the Dove

Do you relate more to the snake or the dove?
–from “Form” by Louise Mathias

I think of myself as a dove
who is not above slithering,
and may even bite if provoked.
That’s it. I’m a dove that may
bite you.  Don’t worry.
You have to really piss me off.
I’m a dove with anger issues.
You have to know, though, that my biting
usually occurs (do doves have teeth?) in self defense,
and is probably just retribution
for some stupid thing you’ve done.
That’s not very dove-like, I know,
but its a rare occasion, my biting
or pecking. But I have to admit
that sometimes I have bitten or pecked
unconsciously, selfishly,
and have caused damage
I did not want to cause.
And that’s when the dove
part of me despairs and,
when possible, makes amends,
and when not possible,
tries in its dove-like way
to forgive itself.  After all,
no dove is perfect and some
snakes, too, have their good days.


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Filed under Poetry