Campfire poems Love and Romance Moments Relationships

Campground Neighbors (Campfire Poem #72)

Couple next door
way older than 
sixtyish me
compact camper
in place when we

a man, a woman
silver hair
matching dog
say hello 
when they return
late evening

Early risers, both
come morning
they let dog out
back in
we nod 'hello'

As I enjoy my
morning campfire
I am reminded
how small, hard
shell campers
amplify, resonate 
basic sound of
even minimal 
quite clearly to

I stop mid-sip
not nearly 
as invigorating,
entertaining as 
the grunts,
giggles - lots of
emanating from 
the little trailer 
next door
as the sun rises
their passion for
the woods

As my attention
returns to 
my coffee

I am impressed
with my 
unknown neighbors
morning prowess
and raise a 
travel-mug toast
realizing they
recreate via 
very fitting 
'Scamp' brand 

A company 
for whom they 
should do 
for while I could 
plainly hear 
all the knockin'
it was never once
even slightly 

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2022

Contemporary Life Moments Uncategorized


A woman I know
went protesting
first timer

missing out as
with strict parents
she wanted

Seeing her a few
days later I
asked if she found
what she
had been seeking

“Yes and no”
she smiled
“I fell in with a
of college kids
who poured milk
on my face”
quickly adding
“for the tear gas”

Her voice trailed.
“It wasn’t
at all
about me”

I nodded.

“Please tell me
that I really didn’t
go there for me”

“I think you did…”
she frowned
“now, here you are.”

We stood there
a summer breeze
kicking up dust

“Maybe you’re right”
she said, smiling

“I’m going to need
some more
goddamned milk.”

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2020

frogs Growing up me Moments Playing with frogs The Lake


  – Mark L. Lucker
© 2017

Love and Romance Moments Uncategorized

Chalk it up to…

Late afternoon, dingychalk1
neighborhood dollar store
picking up essentials:
cleaning supplies, deodorant
AA batteries

Wile E. Coyote
dynamite-sized sidewalk chalk
in handy plastic bucket

at checkout,
mentally rough-drafting
scratchy paeans to my wife
colorful notes she will see
as she departs each day
down front steps, sidewalk

dusty romance
specific, uplifting,
sometimes sexy sendoffs

I, Browning
of pitted concrete

Curious of my
incongruous purchases
smiling, small-talk-makingchalk2
cashier queries;
Grandkids coming?
Teacher who still
has chalkboards?

My reply leaves her
looking quizzical, in doubt
pondering more pedestrian
relationship techniques
lacking any reference
skeptical of sidewalk stanzas

dusty, smudgy, romance
morning devotionals
for long-together lovers

“Not an old school”
I intone
“just ‘old school’”

Collecting purchases,
change, eyebrow-cocking,
appreciative, knowing nod
at my prowess for still knowing
how to make a woman swoon

tomorow, my wife as well

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2017

Introspection Life Moments Philosophies Uncategorized


only another turning point
crossroads of cliché and same ole
what to do which way to turn
got here without GPS will
navigate as always, following stars

gut instinct not infallible co-pilot
riding shotgun, no desire to shoot
let alone take aim even with
windows down, wind in my hair
freedom promised by open roads
just a more panoramic void
ahead or behind checking the shifter
my only clue as to direction
I can’t move it to R going fifty-seven
so I must be moving onward

hard to tell: the road nothing
but a dot in the distance
thinking back to ninth grade art,
lesson on perception and perspective
the farther you are away fromsign2
something means the brush strokes
need to be lighter, not so bold
in coloring or thickness or was
that a different lesson entirely?

I always got yelled at for never
cleaning my brushes properly
leaving them dry, stiff but I made them
starkly, erratically pliable again, using
my own technique of pushing down,
flattening bristles out, painting again
much coarser lines, less nuance

I am no impressionist
haven’t touched a canvas
in years yet time is just blots of color
I need a picture or map to
follow or grab vague directional hints
as I decide to flip a mental coin
heads left, tails right using my blinker –
always instructed to warn those
following my intentions

laughing to myself ruefullyonewayoneway

any fool who tries to follow
will be as lost as I
not knowing what I know
how not to get where I am going
and how many ways there are
to go there or not go there

squealing rubber, leaving tracks
just drive, baby. Just drive.

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2016

Life Love and Romance Moments Relationships

Newlyweds ago

burnedpizza3Loft apartment,
late Saturday afternoon
spontaneity interrupted
by shrill, continual

oven timer buzz

“Pizzas done” says she
“But I’m not” replies he

not-rhythmic, static
range-buzzer drone not
disrupting tempo of early
life-together moral

they learned how easily
heat, afterglow can
turn three-dollar frozen
pizza to charcoal

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2015


Moments Reflections Uncategorized


Life casts its shadowsbackstage9
as the director a play
each silhouette distinctive,
tragicomic profiles

Actors are we all;
no wordless Kabuki,backstage14
tutiti-fruiti, aww Rudy!

the action plays out
“all the world’s a stage”
the stage a fantasy worldbackstage11
that doesn’t lie

light dictates
action of the dark
sans script, stealthybackstage12
hitting each mark
never missing a cue
follow the action!
Plot, be damned!
character development
holds sway over
uncalled for encoresbackstage4
Out, damn’d spotlight!
Out, I say!

It is the refraction
of the darkness
spilling over, into the light

– Mark L. Lucker
© 2016

Contemporary Life Introspection Moments Snippets and snapshots Uncategorized

Flying east at dusk

The setting sun100_4863_0161ed
chases us eastward
orange-scorched ripples
of cumulus white race
with us neck-and-neck

ablaze, dying wisps of cotton
embers envelop us while
about to be snuffed out by
rapidly encroaching nightfall

fleeting light from behind
speeds toward
a head-on collision
with onrushing darkness

a mesmerizing train wreck100_4861_0159ed
at thirty-thousand feet
I cannot turn away from

as the now fading sun collides
with momentum-building night
the coloring-book lines
are only momentarily maintained
before we fade to black

day meets night
night meets day
never have I witnessed100_4859_0157ed
their passionate, daily
coupling as tonight

old song lyrics
come sharply to mind;
‘where the blue of the night
meets the gold of the day,
someone waits for me…’

though I was there by chance
on time and unplanned finding100_4862_0160ed
no one unexpectedly waiting
I could have still lingered
not minding at all the lack of
unexpected company as more
than fair trade-off for being able to
savor with gleeful regret and joy
that the moment was only that.

– Mark Lucker