Robert K. Meyer II


Past the musket-barrel fence with bayonets forever fixed
you drove me, bright shining in my new cub-scout uniform,
my arms cradling a million little flags
for the graves of legendary knights from the Civil War.
You said you wanted little boys putting flags on your grave.
Though both you and dad worked full time
you always found time to read me poems
and dad would read to me about King Arthur.
When he PCS'ed to Europe, you and I saw the Poet's Corner
and we discovered the Vienna cemetery for composers.
With all this death it's funny how you couldn't let me go,
when I had a brain hemorrhage while lecturing
about infinite sequences of complex numbers,
but instead begged the neurosurgeon to let me live.
I know the feeling.
When cancer came to you, what could I do?
I took you to see Traviata, Magic Flute, and Messiah
(maybe it would help)
and Camelot (knowing how you like Robert Goulet)...
in the end cancer, coupled with a stroke, overcame
Quiet as Mimi, your breath left.
Like the four bohemians, I could do nothing.
Within a week, your grave had a flag.

*Published previously in Feelings Poetry Journal, Fall 1996.

* * *


Hypokrites, the movie star,
was Hippocratically inventive,
to heal but never leave a scar
and do it all by mere incentive.

We all know as an abstract fact
that feeding fish to starving cripples
won't help them; but if you subtract
a fish or two, their working triples.

As bonus, now you have free fish!
Surprisingly, it is humane
to take their food, and even dish.
This "doctor" strangely gets champagne

and caviar, as in the comics:
a marvel - voodoo economics!


Robert K Meyer II was a graduate student in mathematics lecturing when his stroke happened in 1978. He went back to UNLV and completed his master's degree in 1981. He got a job doing computer work at Nellis AFB in 1982 and retired in 2005.