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Ernest Slyman
Queens, NY
Poet, humorist, playwright and novelist.
Recent Activity
Flies are forbidden in the church sanctuary on Sunday mornings and evenings. They’ve been told it’s sacrilegious to go buzzing around the congregation. The choir has been known to slap at them with their hymnals. I've been know to strike at them with my church program. I winced a fly... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
Bristol, lover of pancakes. The stars make the pancakes. The moon pours the syrup. East Tennessee is a large, long plate. Every morning the pancakes fall from the sky. The forks grit their teeth. Dip into the soft fields, slip around the sweet puddles of butter which promise us the... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
The sun’s yellow face is smudged with lipstick. The moon can’t keep its hands off the sun when it starts to go down. Lay its head on the Blue Ridge Mountains. The pretty face, the noble chin, the mouth half open. The evening sky observes in the leaves a passion... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
There came and ate from our hands. Memories with wings and beaks they sang on back porches. They perched on windowsills. One memory took you by surprise — that was the one that pecked your eyes out. Ate you like a caterpillar high up an oak tree. Sunlight smiled down... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
The lavish blue dress has been torn. The moon wears it in memory of the morning sun’s youth when the moon was knee-high to a jackrabbit. When it didn’t know how to speak. Couldn't take a step. Had to sit in its high chair and wait for the creamed spinach... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Stories
The shop windows along State Street collect the faces of those who pass by. Puts them in a glass jar. They fly around like lightning bugs. Should be embarrassed to find your self buzzing around in that glass jar, be careful you don’t bump your head. Or lose sight of... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
The string bean has big eyes. Can see for miles. Don’t wear no glasses. It ages gracefully. A few weeks of living it up. Reads Holy Scripture by the light of the moon. The starlight turns the pages. Once or twice it might ride a horsefly. Everybody in Bristol is... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
A sketch of Bristol. A long line, a curly line. A loop that sings like a bird. They go fishing. They catch some bluegills. They learn things from each fish they catch. That’s why Bristol loves to fish. We learn all kinds of things. How a fish sees itself. How... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
The kiss has its own home. It lives on Windsor Avenue. Come and visit some time. Sit down and relax. The kiss has three bedrooms, two baths, lots of closets. You’re going to love the kitchen. The linoleum shines. Hold the kiss’s hand. Look it in the eye. Love has... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
“One Always Begins To Forgive a Place when it's Left Behind.” —Charles Dickens The right foot you acknowledge that knows you should leave. The left one is uncertain. A sentimental fellow with five toes that sing of Bristol. Understanding what a hometown does for feet. Giving them a sense of... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Bristol Poems
Everything’s related in Bristol. The ladder and the step ladder. The broom and the ladle. The wheel barrow and the pickle barrel come from the same family. You fill one up and the other gets lonely. The nail and the screw, the thumb tack and the staple get to know... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
I have never seen an ant that didn’t love to eat a drop of ice cream. All the ants gather around and take turns swimming in the drop. You wonder why they insist on the ice cream’s love. A wild affection that wraps them up. Licks them back. The whole... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
This fork comes from Davy Crocket’s estate. It’s made of bronze and it sings to me when I cut my fried chicken steak. The melody, oh, Lordy, tastes like sausage gravy. Once you learn what the fork knows you will appreciate Davy Crocket’s contribution. The fork tells you what Davy... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
The skunk has nothing against Bristolians. Though last year seven young men were sprayed. The odor carried a pocket knife. A little black bag in which it put a few dead people. Sometimes a whole generation of rabhits can squeeze into that little bag. The stink comes out only when... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
The potted plant fell from the shelf. The wind gazed upon it with reverence and yet didn’t grab it. The sun had no business lifting it, or touching the petals. The reason the potted plant fell was because it was fascinated by the unknown. Like so many household items the... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
The rain puddles in Bristol are kind and well intentioned. Though often as not they try their best not to splash us. It’s isn’t in their natures to throw water on people. They are not mischievous by nature. Though often automobile where rain puddle when squashed cry out. Speak of... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at Bristol Poems
Bristolians believe that double chins have all the fun. If you see a double chin in Bristol, follow them around. A chin goes into a clothing store. Buys a lovely blue dress. A chin gazes through the window of a cafe. Sees two hotdogs sitting at a table. A chin... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Bristol Poems
I beg your pardon. The streets of Bristol don’t like the things traffic lights say. And I don’t mean stop and go. I don’t mean a yellow light holding its nose, telling you to slow down. I’m talking green lights that can’t hold their liquor and red lights who ate... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Bristol Poems
The last time Bristol went to a dance was that hoedown inside that big barn in the sky over South Holston Lake. The moon’s door was open and Bristol went inside. They were towns sitting around in folding chairs. Johnson City, Kingsport, Morristown, Erwin. Occasionally one would rise and accept... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Bristol Poems
The moon over Bristol is a large bowl of sausage gravy. When poured over mountains the gravy drips down. We get our spoons and place them in bright puddles. The stars watch us eat. They know sausage gravy is good for us. We’re country people, accustomed to sausage gravy made... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Bristol Poems
Language is a method of exchanging thoughts. Every word you speak to someone is a gift. Though what we say rests precariously on the words we select. There are words that can take away from someone. The robbery occurs with no warning. There are words that can poison or injure.... Continue reading
Posted 3 days ago at Bristol Stories
Pigs in Bristol express their affections for us. The oink has a basket of flowers. Two candy bars, children riding tricycles around a blue lake. The oink sees us as christians. It sees the Lord inside us. A most precious sound comes out of us every Sunday. A sweet oink... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Bristol Poems
“I can’t hear them. I listen. None of the words are special. None are green words. Not a one. I get shortchanged. I come all the way from Kingsport. Listen to people talk and they don’t say anything special. Why do people think they say green words. It’s beyond me.”... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Bristol Stories
In Bristol we divide things up by how they sound on a guitar. Peas sound like Conway Twitty. Carrots give us Minnie Pearl. A row of cabbages leaves you wanting more. It’s the Carter Family. Kale will soothe your soul. Spinach has the voice of Tammy Wynette. Corn will remind... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Bristol Poems
It’s a philosophical question that goes around Bristol. Why don't chickens fly? It's question that Kierkegaard and Jean Paul Sartre asked? A timeless question all covered with feathers. Some say it was a witch’s spell. Others believe the chicken was singled out as being a lazy good nothing bird. Throwed... Continue reading
Posted 4 days ago at Bristol Poems