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dead men don’t eat lettuce
by Tony Oliveri

I asked kids
what things I should
remember as I
search for ways
to bring enchantment
to my life.

Always step in puddles
Don’t feed dead people lettuce
It’s good to get your nap
out of the way first
were some replies.

In truth they were
much more interested
in playing
than talking
Much more interested
in living
than examining reasons.

And then I remembered
the lessons of children
are simple enough
to be taught without words!
The lessons aren’t about
puddles or lettuce or naps

By all of the gods that ever were
and all the gods that ever will be
what I wouldn’t give to reawaken
my childmind forever!


Perplex me

Vex me
with your logic
and the connections
you so easily make
where I can find none.


 Hex me 
with your smile 
and the words 
you so easily use 
when I can find none. 
Sex me
with your touch
and the mountains
you so easily move
while I can find none.
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Tony Oliveri's published works include:

Chap Books:

Night Games, 1997                                        Paco Books

Turnings, 1998                                                Paco Books

Across the Threshold, 1999                       totaloonie publishing

A Motley Crew, 1999                                    totaloonie publishing

Two O some thing, 2002                             totaloonie publishing

Perfect Binding:

Framing mundane moments, 2004       totaloonie publishing

Dithyramb sithyramB, 2007                    totaloonie publishing

Unfortunately, all of the chap books are currently out of print.  Information on “Framing mundane moments” and “Dithyramb sithyramB” may be obtained from the author via e-mail using

About the Author:
Tony Oliveri has been developing and presenting training sessions for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for 25 years.  Currently, Tony is the Director of Staff Development for the Public School Employees’ Retirement System.  He has presented a variety of sessions at International conferences including IPMA and ASTD.  Tony has served as the Executive Director of a Community Center, the Stage Manager for several central Pennsylvania music festivals and received the ASTD award for excellence for Organizational Development.  Tony graduated from Penn State University with degrees in Community Development and Economics.  He is a poet who has had work published in books, magazines, newsletters and on web sites over the past several years.  He currently serves as facilitator for the Sophie’s Reaction Writer’s Group, a program of the Perry County Council of the Arts.