Amy Barlow Liberatore… stories of lost years, wild times, mental variety, faith, and lots of jazz

Tag Archives: Fairness

Life is Good When…

Life is good when children smile, their bellies full.
Life is good when girls play rough-and-tumble
after their tea party.
When boys are allowed to cry without ridicule…

Life is good when all folks have a home, however humble,
with food on the table and friends to share it.
When community clinics offer free health care
to those who need it most: addicts, women facing choices
that men don’t think twice about, prenatal care for those
who choose motherhood, help for those who don’t…

Life is good when handguns are melted to forge plows.
When women can wear hijabs and not encounter
disapproving looks from unveiled Anglos.
When Mom can choose to stay home because Dad
makes enough and has Union protections, or when
Mom decides the kids are all in school and can work
at something that exercises her mind and passion…

Life is good when the Christmas tree has more ornaments
on the tree than overpriced Chinese- made toys under it.
When the family gave more to charity than to Wal-Mart…

Life is good when every couple can hold hands and love
their lives together without condemnation from straights.
Life is good when the National Guard is back on US soil
and enlisted troops are all home, receiving VA care and
using their GI benefits to get an education…

We’re waiting for the day when life is good.

Until then, this dream is brought to you by your sponsor,
the Creator, who reminds us all that life is a gift…
use it wisely and with love.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
For Sunday Scribblings, an alternate take on “Life is Good.” Also at my poetic heart and hearth, Poets United.

Still under the weather – and yet, there’s that dizzy, “you ain’t goin’ nowhere” feeling of the flu that still gives rise to interesting thoughts.

First off, you MUST check out this link if you interested in (and, like me, vociferously object to) the Nazi/Fascist/Far-Right phenomenon of banning and/or burning books.  Some might not like it (not because of subject, but because the title is something about “booksluts” and they use the “vee-jay-jay” word (yes, I have one, too.  What’s the big deal?).  There are some useful links.  I BOUGHT my daughter a copy of The Jungle by Upton Sinclair when she was a teen.  BANNED!  SOCIALIST LEANINGS! Click HERE.

Please do check it out, but NOT until you have read this poem, for ABC Wednesday, and, of course, my poetic heartbeat, Poets United.  Amy

I Never Lost Faith in Love

For all the sorry-ass excuses for men
who double-crossed my path,
through every mischievous menace who
left me drained and feeling inadequate,

I never lost faith in love.

Through many mistakes whose lips met mine
with divinely inspired kisses
(but the Devil’s own heart), plus
all the power of commitment God gave an ashtray,

I never lost faith in love.

For every hairy-dick tomcat
who yowled ‘til I let him in,
through every door that slammed in my face
once he got his share of the kitty,

I never lost faith in love.

On this earth, once I found the one
who is plush to my blush,
ever-after to my laughter,
I thank God every day,

I never lost faith in love.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

The Dark Side of the Moon

Nuclear plants faced big fines
They’d filled all cave and mines
In Vegas, locals now know
You can gamble AND can glow
Like the bright, full harvest moon

Edict came down from on high
Nuke garbage would now fly
And be stored, safe and secure
In a place with no allure
On the dark side of the moon

Computer parts also flown
With spent missiles to the Zone
That waited in deep space
Old Man Moon’s Janus face
On the dark side of the moon

Flotsam and jetsam were sent up
Poisons, deep-water sludge went up
And rich people paid good money
Ashes placed, “Him” and “Honey”
On the dark side of the moon

As long as folks could view
The same pizza-pie milieu
They wouldn’t burst the bubble
Nor cause a whit of trouble
‘Bout the dark side of the moon

Scientists perturbed
Moon’s balance was disturbed
The orbit now decayed,
There soon was no more shade
On the dark side of the moon

Imagine each frightened soul
When La Luna spun out of control
And the first place it hit
Was Alamos with nuke shit
From the dark side of the moon

© Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil

Poetic Asides, the blog that got me started in poetry (thanks, Robert Lee Brewer and all the Street gang!) had an intriguing prompt: Out of this world. I’d been thinking about this concept for a long while. Peace, and keep the moon crap-free! Amy

Crucifixion, Texas Style

Gov. Perry had a choice:
Listen to the appeal of experts who proved
the man did not start the fire which took
the lives of his children…

or think about his upcoming re-election.

Most Texans don’t take kindly
to governors who commute death sentences.
The Guv could have looked above.
It appears he chose to look the other way instead.

And now another innocent man
walks down the final hallway to his
sanitary, efficient doom.

Strapped down as the doctors ready the dose
of lethal legality, executing “humane” judgment.

Curtains are yanked open to reveal the scene.
Curious how this drama is presented
like a peep show from Hell.

The needle will pierce his skin
and another soul will be loosed
by the State of Texas.

The view from the chamber ceiling
is that of a man
tethered to a cross.

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil for Three Word Wednesday (appear, dose, pierce) and Poets United.

This poem is based on the execution of Cameron Willingham, who spent 12 years on Death Row.  Many experts appealed on his behalf as to the pattern of the blaze, but Willingham had a history of abusive behavior and a 10th grade education, which don’t play well in courts, no matter how the facts are presented.

It’s not only Texas – many states have the death penalty; some have prisoners on Death Row, just waiting for the day the penalty goes back into effect. Texas does tend to execute the most people; in fact, when George W. Bush was governor, he “okayed” 152 executions, the most in recent history by any governor. I remain opposed to the death penalty, and the facts are in favor of pacifists:  More and more DNA evidence is proving the innocence of people on Death Row across the country.


To legalize or not to legalize pot?
That is the question I was sort of
pondering while preparing a
killer omelette this morning after
imbibing my usual cup of coffee that’s
so strong you can stand a spoon up in it.

Now, the secret of my omelettes
is in the herbs…. when they’ve been dried
you toss them in after the chopped onion
and garlic are just beginning to sizzle and
that opens up their flavor, their savor,
and their real power.

Then the rest, the squash, the whatever is
residing in your crisper and not all
squishy and globbed from the humidity
man it is hot outside and even the A.C.
won’t keep the molecular damp from
seeping through the cracks and crevices and

oh, yeah, the omelette. So last thing, you add your
favorite cheese, but what really turns my creation
into a work of art is not the presentation because
it usually falls apart before it hits the plate, and
I’m like, you’re just gonna chew it up anyway,
what’s the big deal about presentation?

Cheese. Cheeeeeese. Oh yeah. Wisconsin aged
cheddar we get at the co-op, so dry it crumbles.
But if you get off on brie or swiss, like the song says,
Love the One You’re With.

So anyway, I finished my omelette and booted up
the puter and the Poets United prompt was GRASS!
How fortuitous! Coincidence?
I THINK NOT. It was simply the universe
whispering in my ear about
sharing my love of creative cooking!

What a grooved-out day to daydream (too!) about my
lovely brunch (I got up pretty late today) and
the secret of its blissful herbalicious goodness…

Bon appétit. Buen provecho. Happy eating, y’all!

© 2011 Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil


Americans hold dear our freedom to vote.
And rightly so.
We take for granted the ease with which
we breeze into polling places to cast ballots.
No death threats or intimidation
(except for people of color
when the majority of Anglos don’t step up
and ensure their rights, too).
And it’s been almost one hundred years
that I, a lowly woman, got the vote!

Free and fair…
until a presidential hopeful
and his golfing buddy discussed voting machines.
“I have a new-fangled computerized one.
It’ll put the mechanized ones in the museum!”
New York State had foolproof levered machines
(tallied after unsealing by all parties for certification
and carted off to the county hub intact).
No chads, no room for error.
You’d have to dump the machine in the river
to get rid of the votes!

Dieboldt: Planned obsolescence for
that which was never obsolete,
replaced by computerized gizmos,
many without paper trails,
most so vulnerable they are hackable, even by teens.

The golf partner promised the presidential hopeful,
“I’ll deliver Ohio for you.”
And that he did.
Now my beloved state has mothballed
perfectly functional, foolproof levers
in favor of “Never Say Nevers.”

We have only our lack of information and action to blame
for the shameful fact that,
although we can vote,
it is no longer guaranteed
that our vote will be counted, reflecting our choice,
or changed overnight
by interests more powerful than those of freedom.

We’re looking forward! We’re making progress!
We’re hurtling headlong into
a new golden age of fraud and abuse.
President Palin and Vice President Palidino?
That would serve us right, I suppose.

I’m going to vote today,
and pray that tomorrow –
whatever the outcome (sincerely) –
the votes were counted fairly.
But in the back of my mind,
Bush and Dieboldt practice their putting…

© Amy Barlow Liberatore/Sharp Little Pencil
previously published at Poetic Asides and my blog