Alan Asnen

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Not me. Well, not really.

I have two friends in Singapore. Funny thing, they don’t know each other. You’d think they might, living in Singapore, but they don’t. Anyway, I write to them occasionally, but not often enough by most standards (probably theirs…). And I write via social media, so you would think it was easier. For me. Or anyone. Just as I write to my friends in Tennessee. Which, come to think of it, I don’t actually.

Which means, effectively, that my friends in Tennessee, for the most part, might as well be in Singapore. Or the other way around. As much as I actually ever get to see them. …

The World Is Waiting…

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Photo by ZQ Lee on Unsplash

Dedicated to the spirit and memory of Sa’dallah Wannous, too soon lost to heaven, may Allah bless his soul. And may this be worthy of him.

Some people, the innocent, have always had trouble wrapping their heads around what major criminal endeavors actually do.

It isn’t enough for crime bosses to merely control the escapades of crooks who rob little old ladies on the street or hold up banks and liquor stores. …

A kind of workshop

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Photo by Josh Applegate on Unsplash

That the haughty neck is happy to bow
And the proud back is glad to bend
Out of such chaos, of such contradiction
We learn that we are neither devils nor divines

— Maya Angelou

Here’s the secret to writing “confessional” poetry in one easy lesson:

Do not tell people how much pain you are in, how lonely and heartbroken you are, UNTIL you have mastered the techniques of communicating these feelings to the reader as they experience these feelings in their own lives while acknowledging (to yourself) that you know nothing of their lives.

In the end, confessional poetry isn’t about the writer. It’s about the reader.

A Christmas Carol…kinda…

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Photo by Hanny Naibaho on Unsplash

Do not tell me the world is the same,
that life is hard as a stone,
for I have known it when it was a flower
— Derrick Walcott

I do remember what a bed is for, but I never understood these thermal blankets. One way they keep you warm and another cool. Wrapped around me. Like I was a baby or something. Makes no sense somehow. Just now nothing does. And that would be a useful word. Sense. Quite operational. Senseless. I could do with that.

Nothing more for the pain just now. So, the bed is also quite useless except as a platform, a place to stare at the ceiling as if it were sky and allow it to become a canvas for useless thoughts. That’s not fair though. The thoughts have been useful instead of pedestrian. …

It’s Christmas and the End of a Decade…the end of a road…

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Photo by Fernando Reyes on Unsplash

I was throwing rocks at a tree. A lot of rocks. Violently. It was getting dark. I don’t see that well in the dark. I started missing.


I looked over towards where the scream came from. Yep, it was her.

“What the hell are you doing??? That really hurt!! Good thing it hit my butt and not my head!!”

“I’m sorry, really I am.”

“Who throws rocks, and at this time of night? What the… Don’t tell me. You aren’t going off on the neighbors again?”


“What is it this time?”

“The guy next door…”

A love story

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Photo by ev on Unsplash

“I tend to like a poem which instead of culminating in a crescendo, merely comes to a close.” — Marianne Moore

That certain crisp hinted at some things. The plane trees on the Rue Voltaire show their first tinges of yellowing as this atmosphere of September arrives, this always freshness of September, this sudden renewal as if another Spring has arrived with a demonstrative yet tip-toeing Autumn.

The children, so many in uniforms, still, off to school again, to learn whatever they do these days. Their parents shuttling off, their breath of freedom busily encumbered with new work, like sharpened pencils, now home from vacations in the north or the south or somewhere, perhaps the Baltic. …

Yeah, Why Not…

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Photo by Louis Velazquez on Unsplash

Oh, well. It seems that, as a result of my pleas for mass demonstrations to end world hunger and climate change, Medium has granted me “Top Writer” status in Humor. So it goes…

Apparently, they have rules.

I have rules.

As a former teacher, parent, and supervisor (sometimes all three simultaneously) I have plenty of rules.

My cat has plenty of rules as well.

Every morning she fetches me into the living room from where I sit writing and having my coffee. To the throw rug out there. This has been going on, practically, since the very first days of her rescue kitten thing. …

This is what they tell me…

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Photo by Jonathan Brinkhorst on Unsplash

I’ve been a lifelong complainer and life-long whiner. Right now, I’ve come from the dentist where I’ve had a root canal done, so I’m in a position to do a lot of whining, because complaining will accomplish absolutely nothing.

At this stage complaining won’t even be therapeutic, which one reader recently reminded me — thanks very much — complaining can be. In this case a few doses of tramadol might be therapeutic and I’m on my way to acquire some.

I was hoping to find less complaining about the MPP by now, but I suppose that was silly of me, it being the holiday season when money is more than ever on people’s minds. …


Alan Asnen

Possessor of Paul Newman eyes. Author of many things straightforward and strange. Some of them appear here.

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