Youths’ Sonnet

They view the world through filmy innocence,
these youngsters who now hear the future call.
Into that forest bountiful and dense,
some travel slowly, wary of the fall.
With nurturance and guidance young ones need
and patience to sustain and keep them strong,
they labor long and hard. Most do succeed,
as they had hoped and prayed to all along.
Some rush ahead–though they can’t clearly see–
to find their niche before it is too late.
They take what is in lieu of what could be.
Unwittingly, too soon they seal their fate.
That good things come to those who wait is true.
The wise ones look ahead and then pursue.



Should I emulate the master?
How can I do that?
All attempts to imitate, I
Know, will just fall flat.
Each endeavor, amateurish,
Surely heads for doom,
Perpetrating waste of hours.
Effort’s rose won’t bloom!
All this pain speaks truth to me:
Relish freedom. Don’t you see
Ev’ry bard can’t Shakespeare be?


“The Mall Is Too Much with Us”

Composed while pondering Wordsworth’s “The World Is Too Much with Us”

The mall is too much with us, spring and fall.
Getting and spending, we lay waste each pay check.
Little in nature we have failed to wreck.
We’ve given our hearts away to cholesterol.
Beach beauties bare too much to one and all.
The howling dopeheads raise all kinds of heck.
Pollution worldwide makes me say, “Oh, yecch!”
Hey, wary youth, we’ll leave this all to y’all!
I’m moved to yell, “Great God, we’re out of tune!”
Given choice, I swear I’d rather be
A lone coyote howling at the moon
Or a monkey swinging from tree to tree
And sharing branch room with a shrieking loon.
Of earth’s abominations these are free.


What Robert Burns Might Say Today

O my tv’s had a gray, gray screen
Since it blew up last June.
The radio plays no melody.
The piano’s out of tune.

Alas! My ipod’s ceased to work.
My laptop’s gone kaput.
My car just died a violent death,
And now I am on foot.

When HBO plays great, my dears,
When car and gadgets run,
I’ll pay thy exorbitant fees, my dears;
Then we’ll all be having fun.

So fare thee well, my saviors dear.
I’ll call thee in a while.
Take care of these, young fix-it men.
They’re really worth a pile!


Janice Canerdy is a retired high-school English teacher from Potts Camp, Mississippi

Featured Image: “Narzis” by Caravaggio, Michelangelo

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4 Responses

  1. Mike Ellwood

    I enjoyed these poems, particularly the Wordsworth pastiche which I found witty and apposite.

    • Janice Canerdy

      Hello, Mike

      I didn’t realize until today that some readers had left responses! Thank you so much for your kind words.


    • Janice Canerdy

      Hi, Shari Jo,

      I didn’t realize till today that some readers had left responses! Your kind words have absolutely made my day.



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