My Posts


Ode to the Paris Climate Accord

Global Warming_11Jul17

 

Oh how we miss you, you Paris Accord!
By considering himself lord, as his confidence soared,
our President struck a chord wielding his veto sword,
courting his base, loyalty assured, science ignored

While earth temps reach new highs, sea levels rise,
a polar bear sighs, as she loses her icy franchise
Humans and organisms of various size, with earthly ties,
hear numerous cries, chances real for their own demise

It’s so unexpected, Trump’s act of defiance
Does he dismiss climatology as pseudo-science?
Human survival may depend on a science reliance
Dare we ignore discoveries that forge an alliance?

Cars and planes represent amazing design,
as are medical lifelines for illnesses not benign,
foods on which we dine, exotic materials so fine,
all signs of science enabling humans to shine

So how’s it possible climate science’s dismissed
by Trump and supporters frustrated and pissed, an unholy tryst?
They refuse to desist, often with a clenched fist,
to acknowledge the gist of the environmental check-list

What can we do to avoid being tense, to face the suspense,
with a President caring mostly for his own immense magnificence?
I say let’s not stress; common sense will overcome nonsense
For nothing lasts forever—not even Trump’s presidential license!

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An Ode to President Trump and his Tweets

Trump_covfefe_8Jun17

 

Our President has troubles, varied and timely,
many from tweets, unfriendly and whiny
Citizens and advisors both pray that he stop,
the latter concerned they might soon get the chop

Trump’s frictions are mostly from self-infliction,
because of Twitter addiction, a personal affliction
But also from a limited knowledge of diction,
often causing contradiction, and alas even fiction

To supporters he’s invincible, even pontifical,
his faults acceptable and ultimately forgivable
Unpredictable makes him divisional, but irresistible,
his base letting him down would be the unthinkable

But to his detractors, he’s persona non grata,
it’s repeated so often, it’s become a sonata
Might Trump be fixable, become a principled pinnacle?
To most that’s a miracle, on the level of biblical

Perhaps there’s a solution, an ablution in Putin,
a kindred spirit maybe, a modern-day Rasputin
Will Trump savor a waiver for Putin’s favor,
in any way possible to attract a savior lifesaver?

But wait! Perhaps there’s a theory that might gain traction,
as Trump tweets and shouts his mental distractions
Might his imaginings, typed without committee,
mean that he is, in fact, President Walter Mitty?

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Ode to my grandpa

Grandpa Kern_20Apr17

Grandpa left his German home by nighttime dew, spiriting away his young bride and infant daughter, my Aunt Sue, sailing far across the ocean blue, to America new. As they departed the scene, the year was 1913, a year before the continent unleashed its war machine. Their ancestral home soon a memory, my grandparents chose Pennsylvania as complementary.

The ensuing family of six worked the family farm true, with Grandpa toiling in coalmines, too. Although the 1919 flu left him with no hair, worse still was World War II taking his number two heir, laying the family’s emotions bare. But ever a Christian–if he were to succumb, he looked forward to heaven and kingdom come.

Living alone with my grandparents as if a son, I learned much important under the sun, and how soda pop stings noses for fun. And Grandpa knew how to eat potatoes right, a big slab of butter with each bite.

After Grandma died early, Grandpa lived alone, because that same autumn Mom recovered her loan. My mother—his daughter—had remarried, you see, and we came together as a family.

I look back and wonder how lonely he must have been. I know I would have been, if I had been him.

But full reflection on this history makes me fathom its core, that had he delayed just one year more, you’d never be reading this bit of lore.

But about whom am I talking? You now will learn. My grandpa’s name was Frederick Kern.

 

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1 Comment

  • Jane Kern Sixbey says:

    Paul,
    So interesting – very nice Ode to your Grandfather. Do you happen to know which Township/County in Pennsylvania they lived? Probably so since your family stayed in the state and your mom is still there. Let me know and I’ll look up township/county where my family lived. Good to hear from you and thanks for sending. I KNOW we’re related!!

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Stories from My Life, #10: A thank-you note on my wife’s birthday

  I’m publishing this blog on the anniversary of my wife’s birth. I’ve been fortunate to have several loves in my life, but none more significant than the first and the last. I was no longer a young man when, at 37, I stumbled across the love of my life. I met Becky, and my… View Article


America’s hysteria in 1942: Déjà vu?

Please see note below regarding Densho, the source for this photograph.   Recently, there have been various comparisons of the Japanese internment to what is happening today. I’d like to provide my own take. In 2014, I published my first novel in the genre of historical fiction, How Much Do You Love Me? It revolves… View Article


Stories from My Life, #9: The memory is old and faint—am I only imagining that I once stood in the audience of President John F. Kennedy?

Copy from President John F. Kennedy’s diary: Tuesday, August 27, 1963   I remember the setting, the White House lawn. I stood only feet from the 35th President of the United States—and he spoke to me. It was in the morning. Have you ever stumbled across a memory so old that you begin to question… View Article


When Truth and Fiction Intersect

In my career writing fiction, I’ve emphasized scientific thrillers. Although I always say that the science in my story is sound, and the details of the physical locations have been researched extensively, my tale is entirely fiction. Not so for my latest novel, How Much Do You Love Me? For this historical novel that revolves… View Article


Three memorable incidents from a decade of book signings

I’ve had dozens of book signings over the past decade, beginning with the publication of my first thriller, Category 5, in 2005, and ending with my historical fiction novel, How Much Do You Love Me?, in 2014. Both Borders (until they departed) and Barnes and Noble bookstores have been receptive and very good to me. I’ve… View Article


From research to writing fiction: how one transitioned into another

  Here is a nice article written about me on Penn State | News


Stories from My Life, #8: California or Bust, 7,000 Miles in Ten Days

  In my series, “Stories from My Life,” I have focused on incidents or experiences that are interesting, humorous, or make a philosophical point. This story hopefully falls into the first two categories. In the summer of 1966, when I was 20 years old, a friend of mine, Neil Shirk, and I did something special:… View Article