Cicadas for Change — poems by Mike Stone

A Hundred Thousand Cicadas for Change

We want change.
A hundred thousand poets for change want change.
We started wanting change nine years ago.
Nothing much has changed since then,
Certainly not by us poets
Certainly not by our poems.
What is change anyway?
First off, I’ll tell you what change is not:
It’s not the change you leave for the waitress,
It’s not even something we all agree about,
And it’s not anything specific.
We just want change.
Now, I’ll tell you what change is:
It’s something that starts off with one or two good people
And ends up with just about everyone in the world;
It’s something that lassoes your imagination and your heart;
And it’s so specific that you know exactly what to do.
There’s no right or good time for change.
The time for change is now.
No one will do it for us.
Only we can do it.
If we can’t do it,
Then it has to be me;
Otherwise, we’re just
A hundred thousand cicadas
Making noise in a forest.
                        June 20, 2020

Our Worst Intentions

Do the skies above your country stop at our borders?
Are the skies above our country afraid to enter yours?
Do the rivers flowing through your land dry up at our borders?
Do our borders refuse admittance to your rivers?
Is the wild grass at the edges of your fields reluctant
To spread over the edges of our fields?
Do the grasshoppers on your side decide against
Hopping over our imaginary lines into our
Breeze nudged grasses or having hopped
Decide not to hop back home?
It seems there’s something in our natures
That disdains our borders and boundaries
Despite our worst intentions.
                                    July 28, 2020

Pity the Poor Politician

Pity the mildewed magician
Who knows there’s no magic
And all is just slight-of-hand
Which gets slightly slower
As he gets older
As does the blonde he saws in half
To dwindling applause,
And who knows the sound of a
One-person audience clapping.
Pity the flim-flam snake-oil salesman
Standing on his teetering soapbox
In front of a crowd of toothless bumpkins
And a pre-paid confederate in a wheelchair.
He knows his medicine’s no good
And his confederate isn’t crippled,
But he’d take a swig of kick-a-poo juice,
Stand up from his wheelchair,
And walk tall for all to see.
He knows he’d better get going
Before the suckers realize
They’ve been suckered again.
Pity the poor politician
Alone on the stage
Sweating under thick makeup
And squinting at a teleprompter.
He alone knows his promises are lies
His answers are as substantive
As cotton candy at a carnival,
He hasn’t a clue what to do,
His supporters will eventually
Turn on him when they finally wake up,
His opponents see through him,
And his friends will desert him
As soon as their whims change.
                        August 7, 2020

©2020 Mike Stone
All rights reserved

Mike Stone was born in Columbus Ohio, USA, in 1947. He lived in San Diego and Chicago. Mike played clarinet and saxophone in his high school marching band, dance band, and concert band. He also composed music. He started out with a Fine Arts major but then graduated from Ohio State University with a BA in Psychology. He served in both the US Army (stationed in Germany) and the Israeli Defense Forces. Mike has traveled throughout Europe and to several Arab countries.

Mike has been writing poetry since he was a student at OSU. He has published four books of poetry (The Uncollected Works, Yet another Book of Poetry, Bemused, and Call of the Whippoorwill), a book of essays, and four science fiction novels (The Tin Man, The Rats and the Saps, Whirlpool, and Out of Time). Mike is currently working on his fifth book of poetry (The Hoopoe’s Call) and a fifth science fiction novel (H4N5-2080). He supported his writing habit by working as a computer programmer, specializing in information security.

Mike speaks English and Hebrew, as well as a smattering of Spanish, German, Russian, and a bit of Arabic. He also speaks several computer languages fluently. Now he is retired. Mike moved to Israel in 1978 and lives in Raanana. He is married and has three sons and seven precious grandchildren.

Check out his blog. You can read his latest poetry, short stories, and essays, while they are works in progress. Mike also has an Amazon author’s page.


The focus of "The BeZine," a publication of The Bardo Group Beguines, is on sacred space (common ground) as it is expressed through the arts. Our work covers a range of topics: spirituality, life, death, personal experience, culture, current events, history, art, and photography and film. We share work here that is representative of universal human values however differently they might be expressed in our varied religions and cultures. We feel that our art and our Internet-facilitated social connection offer a means to see one another in our simple humanity, as brothers and sisters, and not as “other.” This is a space where we hope you’ll delight in learning how much you have in common with “other” peoples. We hope that your visits here will help you to love (respect) not fear. For more see our Info/Mission Statement Page.

One thought on “Cicadas for Change — poems by Mike Stone

  1. Simply fantastic poems, as usual. You have such a hard-hitting, no nonsense way of saying things, and yet, use the best words and phrasing to say them! I especially liked “Pity The Poor Politician”. It’s such an accurate description. Thanks for sharing these with us! 🙂


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