RD Armstrong



He guards his perceived
American way of doing things
With a zealot’s passion
There is no margin for error
In his universe
Trespassers will be dealt with
Severely and with prejudice
Taken out at the earliest opportunity
In the messiest way possible

He’s a hot head
A loose cannon
Tolerated because of
His unpredictability
He thinks he has respect
But he is feared and
Secretly hated

Like any other mercenary
He adopts each cause
With the zeal of a super-patriot
Believing that the success of
Each operation rests
Solely on his shoulders
He has a ‘kill or be killed
Go for the jugular
Take no prisoners
My way or the highway’
Kind of attitude and
He uses this mentality
To justify his use of
The excessive at
Every opportunity

In speech he is blunt
Using coarse language
To convey his message
Fooling the listener with
His rhetoric and down-home homilies
Filling the hearts of those
Who favor his version of the way it is
With pride and admiration

In manner he appears to be
Rough and tumble
Ready to take on any
Situation that may arise
A man of action
A man who has paid his dues
Fought his battles
Put in his twenty

In short
He’s the “go to” agent
A one man
Weapon of mass destruction
Who made his reputation
By back-shooting his opponents
Attacking them within
The safety of the mob and
Who rose above that crowd
On the backs of other
Stronger men silenced by time
And unable to protest their use as
The pulpit from which he
Hurls his invectives

Sadly few seem to see
Through the flimsy material
He has loosely draped around himself
In an effort to conceal his
True identity:
That of thug and opportunist
He is no friend of the working man
No protector of the innocent
No defender of the weak
He’s not even a real actor
In this ongoing tragic-comedy

He’s nothing more than a re-actor
Without an original thought in his head
Grasping at the short straw of fame
Wearing his best ‘game’ face
All the while dreading that his
Precious legacy will wither away
To nothing after he draws his last
Feeble breath



The old thing was
Pretty banged up
The inside of her lip
Was scarred and chipped
And you could see she’d
Been handled over the years
But I hadn’t gotten
Lead poisoning yet
And it’d been nearly
Thirty years since I first
Made her acquaintance
I always liked the way
She felt in my hand
More like a cup
Than a mug
Not that I’m saying
She was delicate
Or girlie
She could hold her own
And did so without
Comment or protest

She was still on the job
The day of the accident
Falling victim to a moment of
Careless abandon on my part

I thought a little bit of
My heart was gonna’
Break after
I kneeled over her
Shattered body and swore
I’d put her back together

Knowing full well that even if
I could do that
It would never be the same
Between us
Knowing that I meant well
But that soon enough the guilt
Would drift in as I’d find myself
Gripping a mug that proclaims
“Don’t bother me
I’m having a sexual fantasy”

Which will surprise no one

Soon I’ll have to settle
For sleek curves and the
Predictable uniformity
Of your modern substitute

Replacing the little
That made my
Hippy cup

So it’s last call
And one last
Tortured aria
Before I place
The remains in
The graveyard
Of cobwebs
Dark shapes and
Rusting metal
That is the ‘fixit’ area
Of my workbench
Right next to the busted lamp
And the dead electric drill

Here my hippy cup will
Grow dusty waiting for
The hands of Justice to
Return and make it right


     My friends call me Raindog. I have been writing poetry & prose for over thirty years. I live alone in an apartment somewhere near the L.A. Harbor and rely heavily on the kindness of the strange. I live frugally and survive by doing odd jobs (carpentry & painting); not because I believe in the nobility of poverty, but because it's the simplest way...
     ...I started the Lummox Press in 1995. In the beginning it was primarily for self-publishing purposes but in 1998 I began to publish other poets.
     I also have been publishing the Lummox Journal, since late 1995. It is a small-press monthly digest, examining the creative process involved in the making of art (visual, musical, and oral/written). Using interviews, essays, poetry & illustrations to explore the obstacles to, as well as, the rewards of that creation... The Lummox Journal currently prints 175 copies per issue, 95% of each run goes to subscribers...


online poetry journal
- Project Raindog -

Lummox Press & Journal
POB 5301 * San Pedro, CA * 90733-5301

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