Witches’ Brew

Round and round the seven seas go,
In the putrid poisons throw,
Double, double toil and trouble,
dolphins die and oceans bubble.

Extract of mercury, pcb’s,
poison waters by degrees.
Tampon inserts, medical waste,
to melt a turtle’s carapace.
Make the potion more desirous,
add bacteria, morbillivirus.

Double, double toil and trouble,
dolphins die and oceans bubble.

Radioactive toxic water,
ingredient of massive slaughter.
Pollutants, garbage, oil spills,
refuse of defiled landfills.
Biotoxins from sewage bred,
emanate from watersheds.

Double, double toil and trouble,
dolphins die and oceans bubble.
Pneumonias, ulcers, bites of sharks,
signs of suffering’s watermark.
Unusual dolphins’ morbid event,
is this somehow God’s intent?
Dolphonic requiem redefined
As eulogy for humankind.

Double, double toil and trouble,
dolphins die and oceans bubble.


Robin’s Egg Blue

Bobbin’s leg glue?
No, robin’s egg blue.
You have the flu?
No, robin’s egg blue.

Did you say, robin’s egg blue?
Yes, robin’s egg blue.
Ma’m, I know navy blue, baby blue,
Indigo blue, wedgewood blue, You Ain’t Been Blue,
But please pray tell, just what the hell
Is robin’s egg blue?
A delicate blue with a touch of  green.
Oh, you’re talking about aquamarine.
No, robin’s egg blue is what I mean.

A decorating coup,
My mother determined to be the first of all she knew
To have a living room painted robin’s egg blue.
Now what could poor Mr. Cavanaugh do?
His reputation as a painter hitherto
Unchallenged as mixer extraordinaire,
The one who’d produce the right shade of puce
To match the dining room chair,
Was about to collapse unless he made to perfection
The proper connection
Of blue with a green interjection
Of paint, to make just the right shade of
Robin’s egg blue.

Blue pigment to white, a dash of green,
Then tried on the wall as a sample,
Too dark, too light , too green, too blue! cried Mom.
All hopes of perfection were trampled.

More samples, more cries of the painter’s pain,
For now he realized that what he would gain
Was enshrinement in the Hall of Fame
For coming up with just the right hue
Of Mother’s idea of robin’s egg blue.

At last he had found it, though Mom was not sure,
But how much can a painter from my mother endure?
I know you will like it, then said to assure,
Or I’ll reembezzle your expenditure!
As Mom gasped through laughter, she gave his due,
Mr. Cavanaugh, that’s the perfect robin’s egg blue.

A coda must be added to this story,
The success of the paint job  was Mother’s glory.
Every lady in town just had to do
Her living room painted robin’s egg blue.


Susan Martin, a retired English and creative writing teacher, has had poetry and short fiction published in several literary journals, anthologies, and on-line sites, including The Society of Classical Poets.  Most recently she has had poetry published in “The Road Not Taken,” and “The Lyric,” and a short story published in Brandt Street Press’ anthology, “Dammit I love You.”  She lives at the Jersey shore where she enjoys the many literary activities and opportunities there and in nearby New York City.

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