(Photo of Tom Fillion at Lake Champlain)



I had a head on collision today
With of all things
a butterfly
flying out of control
with absolutely no consideration
for a human on a bicycle
wearing a safety helmet
and a bright orange security vest
so people in Land Rovers
donÕt rove over me
It happened so fast
I canÕt even accurately describe
The species or phylum of butterfly
It was
But I will never forget the sound
Of the flapping wings of my perpetrator
Continuing on its flight pattern
Unperturbed at the chaos
It created at my expense
I came to a full halt on my Mongoose
From Walmart
To survey the damages
To my dignity and humanity
There were no credible witnesses to this
Hit and run except
For the no-see-ums
That frequent this strip of Bayshore
Given the right
Atmospheric conditions
And they implied it was,
Prejudiced as they were
Coming from so far down
on the food chain,
All my fault
That I was the negligent one
For wearing an orange security vest
Which attracted a wayward butterfly
And despite my perspective
As the victim of a hit and run accident
I was actually the beneficiary
Of a simple case in nature
of mistaken identity




the first thing I do

in the morning

is put on my glasses

so the world can see

into the small space

I share with it

I put on a shirt

From the Inside out

like I feel

the slippers go on next

and the world follows me

to the bathroom

where I turn off the darkness

and take out the night brace

I wear like a bridle

That the world grinds in my sleep

after a day of wild horses

settles down into a brood

of nightmares

chomping at the bit





I saw your sign

on a telephone pole

along the side of a road

by a strip shopping mall


I donÕt know who you are

But it struck me as totally odd

And random

to see a sign


on a telephone pole

I donÕt have a piano

(I have a guitar

That fits in a case

I can carry it myself)

If I had a piano

I wouldnÕt know how

to play it

or move it

unless it had rollers on each leg

how many legs

 does a piano have?

You must know that

After moving so many pianos

But I wanted to know

How you make

A living

Moving pianos?

Are there that many

Pianos that need moving

In this world

So that you stay busy

Enough to feed your family?

I wonder about that

Since I donÕt see many

Trucks with pianos in their beds

Moving about the city

It must be lonely being someone

Who moves pianos for a living

ThatÕs what this is all about


ItÕs not about moving pianos

IÕm going to give you a call

Not to move a piano

I donÕt have a piano

I have a guitar

But to see if you are okay

That your sign isnÕt  really

A sign to move pianos but

a cry for help

left on a telephone pole

by a strip shopping mall

a sign that professionals warn us about

all the time

after the fact

In a world

stuck in one place

without a

piano mover




ItÕs late Friday afternoon

Rush hour

in early November

with a full moon

expected in the evening

Already the

delivery service fleet

of small cars

with out of state plates

are stopping at homes

in the cobblestone neighborhood

near the golf course

and the drivers


large, brown sacks

of gourmet meals

to front doors

a doorbell rings

the exchange occurs

and the drivers hurry across

the oak covered yards where

squirrels scamper

with their acorns

dropped like

gourmet moon beams

on a clear November night




ItÕs open enrollment

for chemical warfare

On the fruits and vegetables

of free speech

using words as pesticide 

the terracotta troll army

dressed in chain email incognito

try hard to make life an



magpie nest

bombarding and

censoring with cluster bombs

of words

to drown out speech

they donÕt want you to hear

their words donÕt leave fingerprints

or footprints

only persistent chemical trails

like mustard gas

in the trenches  of World War I

or nuclear half lives

at Nagasaki

or Hiroshima

or the high octane

drinking water

of Flint, Michigan

or the unleaded propaganda

from a nitwitÕs

twitter feed











Dutch artist Johan Vermeer (1632 – 1675) was overlooked

for two centuries

he mastered the art of perspective

and the vanishing point

where parallel lines converge in the distance

perhaps the future

transforming a flat surface into one with depth

to impersonate reality

not there

and he utilized camera obscura

so well that he went upside down

and disappeared for centuries

until Time turned right side up and rediscovered

in the layers of his drawing room interiors

made in the same room

and against the same wall

his use of light and color

was so extraordinary

and his realization that

objects next to each other share colors

if not light and perspective

that his brilliance finally shown through

in his depiction of the ordinary

a milkmaid, a geographer,

an astronomer, and a girl with a pearl earring,

among others,

he turned a canvas into a mirror

that reflected light

no one else saw

and filed Baroque rooms

with the solid necessities

of daily life

made real like magic

with pigments

and layers of imagination

So take heed all

Who dabble in any art

Time isnÕt of the essence

Vermeer proved

Only grace, subtlety, and elegance

Will persist


© Tom Fillion

Bio:  These poems are from Tom's collection, THE SKYÕS THE LIMIT

His novels and poetry collections are available at:  https://www.amazon.com/Thomas-Fillion/e/B00J938F2E