The HyperTexts

Michael Seeger

Michael Seeger lives with his lovely wife, Catherine, and their still-precocious 17-year-old daughter, Jenetta, in a house with a magnificent Maine Coon (Jill) and two high-spirited Chihuahuas (Coco and Blue). He is an educator (like his wife) residing in the Coachella Valley near Palm Springs, California. Some of his recent poems, either published or included in print anthologies, have appeared in Lummox Press, Better Than Starbucks, The Literary Hatchet, Misty Mountain Review, Poetry Pacific, and The Coachella Review. Prior to his life as a middle school English instructor, he worked as a technical writer for a baseball card company and served as a Marine infantry officer during Desert Storm.

We Give and Get at Christmastime 
“I have found that among its other benefits, giving 
liberates the soul of the giver.”—Maya Angelou
Prodigal hearts are everywhere, 
Spending dollars on people and pets — 
With soul-liberating festive aire, 
Dog collars, and television sets.  
Spending dollars on people and pets, 
Pretty paper wrappings hide 
Dog collars, and television sets — 
The trimmings and trappings of yuletide. 
Pretty paper wrappings hide  
In untrammeled exuberance  
The trimmings and trappings of yuletide — 
A Hallmark Channeled-Munificence! 
In untrammeled exuberance 
Festivities rid all selfishness — 
In Hallmark Channeled-Munificence, 
Nativities display holiness. 
Festivities rid all selfishness,  
With Christmas trees in decadence, 
Nativities display holiness —
On your knees, you wrap up presents.
With Christmas trees in decadence,
Ornamented, and tinsel-tapered,
On your knees, you wrap up presents —
Pine-scented, and pretty-papered. 
Ornamented, and tinsel-tapered 
(Absent regret, reason, or rhyme), 
pine-scented, and pretty-papered —
We give and we get at Christmastime. 
Absent regret, reason, or rhyme —
(With soul-liberating festive aire)
We give and we get at Christmas time; 
Prodigal hearts are everywhere. 

From Within
doesn’t come 
as easily
as the sunrise
that will arrive 
in the morning —
although we are 
required to forgive 
And as we
we will be
from within.

After Summer Sonnet 
The cooler weather
Promised by autumn 
Had finally come. 
Trusting that yellower
Season of leaves 
To be good
For the head 
And heart — I took
A walk in the mellower clime.
What one believes
Is understood; 
Where the path led
I could not look —
At what I’d become.

In Memory Alone

When I cracked open the yellow
tinted vanilla crescent moon 
cookie that concluded our meal 
at the Chinese restaurant
the fortune read, “Take your time,
eat this cookie slowly.”  Sure, 
I thought, with a suggestion like that 
how could I refuse? Stepping out-
side I thought Love is not found
by the seeking, it must be created 
to be understood, like that black oak 
leaf from Yosemite you keep 
on your dresser as a reminder of
its otherworldly provenance. 
You go there to slip away like
the seasons (where do they go?), 
to that Valley of Light. Looking back
beneath a starry sky, I realize 
just that — that looking up at 
light that’s long fled its origin, 
traveling alone through time, 
is to peer out at the past 
and at what remains 
in memory alone.


I found some leaves in a book
I had picked up from the road

one rainy day last fall. I could
not bear to let their beauty lie

there on the cold, wet ground,
waiting to disintegrate under

the wheels of oblivious drivers.
I tried to save them from their
                 as we all have tried
in similar ways to save ourselves
from time. Now, it is nearly Spring,

but these leaves, like memories,
tell me, again, how fleeting
everything is.

                   And that no one
can stop, not for a moment, the
constant flow and inexorable
passage of life.

I Wait

It’s heavier here now
Since you left.
Like a miracle; Wow!
See: Bereft.

I have in my hand words
From a book;
An empty sky holds birds
As I look.

Slowly the past recedes,
Emptied, as the mind reads

Hardened understanding
Changes us
In our views; Birds landing
Make a fuss.

It’s dark where sunlight fell;
You are late.
Silent as a cancer cell,
I wait.

A Letter Had Come

On a cold day where I reside
A letter had come.
And what was found inside
Would leave me dumb.

My Irish mother forty years ago
Had placed me for adoption.
Now there is much that I don’t know
But Mom had no option.

Opening the mail I read
A note with eyes drawn to slits.
Stopping at that thought-thread,
I knew it all fit.

Then we emailed one another;
This was how it went.
Learning about each brother;
And what it all meant.

We tried to grow closer as men;
Closer we hoped to stay,
Gathering together then,
On St. Patrick's Day. 

The Poet and Master Teacher

We met in a room where children had learned
eight years at your feet. Now, near the summer's end,
I was new; you offered a hand to lend;
The difference made could not be returned.

And it would take years before it felt earned
But the respect I saw was finally won.
Even though those early days are long gone
The lessons learned during those times are burned

Into my memory and come back today
When in situations I have to say
The right thing. Now there are ladders to climb;

You wrote poetry, spoke of the sublime,
And taught things a certain way: the old way —
You were here, and I caught you just in time.

Plasticware to Lenox

We went from using plasticware to Lenox
(Not one of us has caused a plate to crack)
And I can’t say now that our stoneware sucks.

We’re careful here and walk around like eunuchs
(Although you’ll still find papers in a stack).
We went from using plasticware to Lenox.

Establishing a balance is the crux —
(Most of the time my back feels out of whack)
But I can’t say now that our stoneware sucks.

The floor no longer looks like Jackson Pollock’s,
(Though there still exists a cat piss sour smack).
We went from using plasticware to Lenox.

We’re neither Pollyanna nor grave cynics,
But here to stay and starting to unpack
Though I wouldn’t say now that our stoneware sucks.

This allusive Lenox is the bollucks!
(At least we’ve found ourselves back in the black)
We went from using plasticware to Lenox
And I can’t say now that our stoneware sucks.

The HyperTexts