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Operation Teapot


The 1950s were an amazing time – full of hope, fear, and bizarre scientific experiments. Here’s a true story, from a recently released government document. Sometimes you can’t make this stuff up.


Operation Teapot

In 1955, eight communist countries signed the Warsaw Pact
war was beginning between south and north in Vietnam
and trouble was simmering on the Montgomery buses.

Meanwhile, in the Nevada Desert, government scientists
were conducting an experiment on the possible effects
of a nuclear explosion on beer and soft drinks.

Their results, duly published with full extract and pages of data,
proved that in the event of a nuclear catastrophe, packaged beverages
would be a suitable emergency source of liquid refreshment,

though the beer might lose a bit of its flavor.



“A writer is someone for whom writing is more difficult than it is for other people.”  Thomas Mannn



I wrote this morning,
which is why there is a pile
of plates in the sink
and we have no clean laundry.
But hey – I wrote this morning!


A dog from Hell

I was browsing books at our local Goodwill store on Saturday, and there, nestled among all the copies of “What to Expect…” and “Tax tips for the 1990s,” was a copy of Charles Bukowski’s “Love is a dog from Hell.”  I brought it home and started reading.  Bukowski can feel like the long-lost uncle you don’t really know if you want to invite to the family reunion.  He is hilarious and profane, self-centered and offensive, completely unapologetic for who he is.  He just seems to tell it like he sees it.  And in compelling style – at least to me.  After an hour with “Love is a dog from Hell” I wrote this response. (To share with friends at dVerse Poets Pub).


A dog from hell

He’s at it again,
chasing cockroaches across
the bathroom floor with
an ironic stream of piss

some nameless hooker
is lighting up in the bedroom
crouched on the headboard
and shouting at the television

he says he likes the ones
with personality, but I can’t
help noticing he chooses
the ones with big tits

he loves to tell about it while the
booze is flowing and the telephone rings
and he just ignores it all,
cave-painting in skeletal lines

and I hate him – the misogynistic asshole –
hate him because I am so damn jealous
of that clear, unapologetic voice.
No, I am not bored, Mr. Bukowski.


Sidewalk days


Sidewalk days

In downtown Goshen,
we mix business with pleasure.
My favorite sign reads:
“Become our friend on Facebook
for the chance to win a gun.”



One of my best childhood memories is of my dad buying flowers for my mother.  He loved to do it.  He taught me many things with his words, but some things he simply taught by his actions.  Thanks, dad, you old romantic…

written for Robert Lee Brewer’s Poetic Asides.



I brought you roses from the street seller
at the corner of archway road just like
my dad used to buy flowers for my mum

always to mark a special occasion
sometimes for absolutely no reason
except that she loved fragrance and colour

and maybe I’m hoping you are like her
though I don’t realize it yet, maybe
I’m just trying to be as good as him


answers like socks – celebration sale

Andrew Kreider: Answers Like Socks

Time to party!  To celebrate the 200th post on this blog, I’m offering a special deal on the download of “answers like socks”.  If you go to CD Baby, you can get the whole album for only $2!
“answers like socks” is my favorite creative project of any I have worked on.  I designed it to run like a radio show, with words and music interspersed.  The recording is about 45 minutes long, broken into tracks like a regular album.  Lots of poetry, of course, plus four original songs and a bunch of interlude buttons.  What’s not to love?!

Check it out.  If you like it, let your friends know – this is an offer for anyone to enjoy.  Thanks for being there for me on this blog.  And here’s to the next 200 posts!

A vegetable fable

This summer, I’ve had the chance to do some “lightning poetry” on the streets of Elkhart.  During the July ArtWalk, I was given a strategic spot on Main Street, from which I would accost passers-by and ask if they had one minute to listen to a poem.  If they said yes, I gave them a choice: silly or serious, and would then select a poem for them from one of two folders, based on that preference.   It was amazing to see people’s reactions.  Some ignored me, or even told me to leave them alone – made me feel like a street evangelist, which I sort of was, I suppose.  But others were delighted to be approached and listened/responded with enthusiasm.  The highlight for me was the two burly biker dudes who asked for a serious poem and then engaged me in conversation about the meaning of life.  Priceless.

Anyway, the most popular poem of the day was a silly one that re-tells the Cinderella story using vegetables.  Here it is – imagine you’re on a street corner as I read it to you…


A vegetable-fable

Cinderella was a Brussels sprout
the kind of snack you only think about
occasionally, like when the cupboard’s bare
or Christmas guests appear from who-knows-where
and you are caught short-handed.

Her sisters were the prize zucchinis,
tightly stuffed in mink bikinis
tanning on the castle lawn
while Cinders worked till dusk from dawn
doing the jobs that she was handed.

But then Prince Charming, that great star fruit, paid a call
and planted the idea of a ball.
The bully-girls thought they’d be most appealing
They had no idea they’d be dealing
with their sister, who, to be candid,

was more delicious to the eye
than they. They were left alone to cry
like onions when she stole the prince and left a clue
at midnight – with a single crystal shoe
the heart-sore lover-boy was handed.

The story ends, as all good meals do,
With sweetness to top off this most romantic stew.
Our heroine delicious, ripe and pure
Outlasted both her sisters, rotten to the core
At least, that’s how I’m told this fruit-and-veggie fairy tale ended…


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