The Sunday Poem: Larry Goodell... Screwballs of Infinity

Larry thinks all poetry is local. The place you are enters your voice and shapes your poems. He thinks poetry is alive and well but, like Alcoholics Anonymous, a helluva lot more people need its services. But poetry builds its own community of poet-publishers and eager listeners. You can't deny its vitality. Larry was born in this state and lived here all his 79 years except for a couple years in the Army, 4 years at USC and 1 teaching in Roswell at the Military Institute. For links to his poetry, his blogs and music go here:

Screwballs of Infinity

We’re having a convention of misfits and risk-takers.
Idiots, buffoons and smart people are welcome.
In fact we won’t exclude anybody so long as you’re crazy.
Do you have your cares stretched half way to the moon?
Do you walk on stilts just to show off how tall you are
or are you humble as a snail in his shell?
And do you spout oddities putting uneasy syllables together?
Do you drive your car backwards for no reason at all
and walk crazy-like when you don’t have to
    holding out your elbows in odd positions
as you make up words and substitute similar sounding
    syllables for what is meant?
Is one half of your mind out with the farthest galaxy
    the Hubble has just finally photographed
and the other half of your mind not thinking at all
    or forgetting what it formulated to say
as you stumble to the car in the parking lot you can’t find.
Are you attracted to odd paintings, odd people,
    odd music, odd architecture as well as
    old fashioned things and an untrammeled ordinary day?
Do you cook a supreme dish or two, Szechuan, Indian,
    or Italian as well as concoctions nobody can eat?
Are you unusual in fact unique, don’t despair –
we’re getting together right now in this room
    with each one crazy as a loon, creatively
    insane, far out on Weirdo Avenue,
tooling down the road of silly satisfaction
we’re all here now, who’s the cockeyed president?

larry goodell / placitas, new mexico

On behalf of myself and everybody in the Albuquerque poetry community I would like to extend to Larry Goodell our appreciation for his tenure as editor of The Sunday Poem.  THANK YOU LARRY!  Your knowledge and abilities have made this column a real pleasure to read every single Sunday!  You are a giant among the wildlife of New Mexico's piñon and juniper covered hillsides.

In two weeks the editorship of The Sunday Poem will pass to another marquee name in the annals of Albuquerque and New Mexico poetry--the great Margaret Randall.  Thank you Margaret!  Meanwhile, I will grab control of the keypad for a couple of weeks.  Thanks for reading!

--Jon Knudsen

Views: 186

Comment by Dee Cohen on July 20, 2014 at 11:26am

I may not be president but I'm definitely in the cabinet. Thanks for minding the store...Dee

Comment by larry goodell on July 20, 2014 at 5:39pm

Thanks so much Joh Knudsen for The Sunday Poem, & thanks for the comments. Here's the audio of this poem if you'd like to hear it.

Comment by cc on July 20, 2014 at 6:37pm

Inspiring how you pay heed to your imagination, Larry! Fresh insights come from you daily - yes I cast my vote with August March for brilliant and greatest living with you, Larry Goodell.


(aka cirrelda claire)

Comment by Adelita on July 21, 2014 at 8:53am

Thank you so much for taking the wheel and blessing us not only with your wonderful words, but with the words of others! 

Comment by Margaret Randall on July 24, 2014 at 5:15am

Another great poem by Larry Goodell, one of our truly unique New Mexico poets. Thanks, Larry, for your great tenure as maestro of this space. And thanks, Rich, and of course Jon... and all the weekly readers. I hope I can do the space justice starting in a couple of weeks. I already have some terrific work. And I extend an invitation to others--send poems (shorter poems work better here, I think), a brief bio and photo to me at Let's keep one of Albuquerque's most original poetry venues going!

Comment by Laurie Macrae on July 24, 2014 at 10:48am

Larry, thank you and keep us posted on the local madness in Placitas.

Comment by Merimee Moffitt on July 26, 2014 at 3:16am

Larry, Georgia and I are in Berlin --ithanks for Screwballs of infinity--great and not disappointing, you are so kind to the oddballs, screwballs hahahaha  interesting and crazed crazy place this German city.  Nice apartment, cool breezes this morning.  Georgia says she wants to join yr club but I'd add we're already in it.  always liked ODD-lots odd odds in Berlin and all the people look like me but talk pretty funny.  Thanks to you, Jon, Rich for carrying on the brilliant venture of the Sunday Poem.  So zany to read it here where it posts at night. oxox to u and nm, we're coming home Monday.


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