Poem Home

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Welcome to our landing spot highlighting the many poems from Flominic, who also is known as Dominic Farrenkopf. His poems will appear here regularly through the year. Weekly you can also find a printed copy at Chapter One Book Store in Hamilton. For many, many other poems check his website.


My family has
an annual tradition,
making it happen this year
is my mission.
We gather each year
at Thanksgiving’s table.
This year the internet
will make us able.
There’s an app you can download,
Vroom is its name,
and connecting groups up
is its full-time game.
I set up the meeting
and sent out the link,
everyone said they’d be there
for food and drink.
I set everyone’s browser
to full-screen mode,
and welcomed them all
to my humble abode.
We bowed down our heads
so that I could lead grace,
I peeked up and saw
my sis feeding her face.
I thought of scolding her
but then thought better,
and watched her drip gravy
down her white sweater.
The meal started,
for dad it was the same,
he was positioned
so he could watch the game.
A misfortune happened though
when his team scored.
He cheered loud
and spilled his drink on his keyboard.
My little brother
chewed with his mouth open.
That he was cured of this
my mom was hopin’.
She said, “Tilt you camera up,
more north than south.
This way we won’t have to see
what’s in your mouth.”
The conversation flowed
as we ate dinner,
we joked that the screen
didn’t make us thinner.
We chatted more
and before we said goodbye,
we all had a slice
of gramma’s punkin’ pie.
We took turns showing off
the pies we all made,
and laughed at my top
with its very dark shade.
“I overcooked it
but, see, I’ve got a scheme.
I’m just gonna slather it
with whipping cream.”
We laughed some more,
then gave air hugs and kisses,
waved good-bye,
and then turned to clearing dishes.
My house was suddenly still
I said out loud,
“I’m sure glad
I got to gather with that crowd.”
“I’m so thankful
for the online platform, Vroom,
for because of it...
my family filled the room!”

Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf


Down at the hardware store
I picked up a bag of seed
with the idea in mind
that my feathered friends I’d feed.
I set up a pole by the fence
with a dish on top,
I sat back to watch the birds
sample my new seed crop.
I was hoping for songbirds,
which is what the bag said,
I dreamed of blue birds, yellow terns
and cardinals red.
But the first fellow that arrived
was all black and white.
That magpie was startled
by a crow, black as midnight.
The next visitor was Mona,
she is a stray cat.
She got in the bushes’ shadow
and patiently sat.
Now came another furry friend
a small brown squirrel.
He zipped right up the pole
to give the seed a whirl.
He was a messy eater
and got seed on the ground.
Next two deer sneaked in,
without making nary a sound.
They wiggled the pole
and made the seed fall off the plate.
There were still no songbirds
despite this three hour wait.
Just before it got dark
I gave the dish a refill.
I turned off the porch light
and put the seed on the sill.
Sometime during the night
we got two inches of snow.
When I woke in the morning
I looked out the the window.
There were paw prints in the snow
and I was not too thrilled.
Raccoons had swarmed around
and the bird seed was now spilled.
I was mad about the seed,
“That sill’s too rickety!”
I was rushing out
when I noticed the chickadee.
She was hopping in the snow
pecking seed off the ground.
Suddenly there were lots more-
and I mean all around!
They hopped in deer tracks,
cat tracks and tracks of a raccoon.
All of them visited
under the light of the moon.
I went back to the store
and bought an extra large bag.
While I was there checking out
I couldn’t help but brag:
“At my house, you eat,
even if you’re not a tweeter.
There’s lots of room...
at my not-just-for-songbirds feeder!”

Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf

At The Helm

Things were slow in Montana,
I needed a change of pace.
A Coast Guard recruiter
said he’d get me out of this place.
He asked what I drove
then laughed out loud while slapping his knee,
when I told him ‘bout
my Ford Maverick of ‘73.
He said, “Young lady,
your opportunity is knocking!”
Then started a conversation
where he did the talking.
“Leave that Ford behind you
and I mean really, really far,
I’ll put you on the helm
of the ice breaking Polar Star!”
“That’s a heavy icebreaker-
Antarctica bound each year!
Even smashing through ice
she’s a beautiful ship to steer!”
“Now speaking of beauty,
let me tell you ‘bout the Eagle!
When she’s spreading full sail
she’s dignified and regal!”
“This three-masted ship
trains officers on even keel
and you’ll transport back in time
with your hand on its wheel!”
“Now, speaking of time,
you’ll enjoy every single hour
while stationed on the Steadfast,
a cutter with raw power!”
“Known as The White Shark
by smugglers of marijuana drugs,
You’ll appreciate her speed
as you chase those green-leaf thugs!”
“Now, my next enticing offer
may sound a bit screwy,
but you’d love to helm
a sea going tender of buoy!”
“The Coast Guard Cutter Cowslip
is known as the Bar-Tender,
on Columbia River’s Bar,
buoy aid she’ll render!”
“While at the helm,
carefully guiding her down the river,
you’ll notice her rudder response
is sharp as a sliver!”
“But I saved the best for last,
and that’s the life saving boats!
Yes, it’s the coxswains of these,
that get boastful brags and gloats!”
“They steer into unruly surf
to rescue life and limb,
with your hand on the throttle
your days will never be dim!”
I looked at some brochures
and then signed on the bottom line.
I was promised a small boat station
and that was just fine.
I went through boot camp
and then to Washington’s Grays Harbor.
I’m driving a vessel there
but I’m just a lawn barber.
See, I’m a Seaman Apprentice,
and there’s no rank lower,
which is quite evident...
cause I’m driving a push mower!

Happy Veterans Day!
Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf, DC2 USCG

A Halloween Epic from Dominic
The Hound of Halloween

It was Saturday morning
and Halloween Day.
I told my great-grandson,
”I have something to say.”
”Our chicken farm has been
in the family for years,
and not all were happy,
some were quite fraught with tears.”
My father started it
with the neighboring farm,
he’d sure take it back
if it could undue the harm.”
”It was on Halloween
in Nineteen Twenty Five
a dog got in a coop
leaving no chick alive.
Under the full moon
my dad chased the mongrel dog.
He lost the dog’s trail
in some dense evening fog.
Convinced that the neighbor’s dog
had done the killing,
my dad dispatched their pet
in a way most chilling.
In his moment of rage
he saw nothing but red,
when the smoke cleared
their dog lay motionless and dead.
Out came the neighbor
also brandishing a gun!
Shouting commenced
and my dad wisely turned to run.
From then on
a mutual dislike existed.
Now, nineteen years later
our story gets twisted.
Another Halloween night
showing a full moon,
our chickens under attack,
was it a raccoon?
My dad rushed out
and nearly had a heart attack!
It was the neighbor’s dog
from all of those years back!
The cur growled at him
showing rows of sharp teeth.
My dad could see through it
not just ‘round and beneath!
My dad fired his weapon
with no avail,
he turned to the house
the cur hot on his tail.
The specter dog prowled
around the farm all night,
my dad assessed the damage
at morning’s first light.
Chickens were killed,
the rest of the livestock disturbed
and me and my father
were certainly perturbed.
Now go eleven years
to Nineteen Fifty Five,
a Halloween
with nary a chicken alive.
Again, the moon was full-
the hound on the prowl!
I now ran the farm
and lost most all my fowl.
The ghostly dog terrorized
the farm through the night
and warded off attempts
that I made in the fight.
Full moon Halloween
was Nineteen Seventy Four
the mongrel spirit
came back to settle the score.
Then it was my son
who was steady at the helm,
he too lost birds to this beast
from another realm.
Just nineteen years ago,
in Two Thousand and One,
the canine creeper
made contact with my grandson.
Yes, your dad faced a full moon
that year’s Halloween
and just like in years past
there was a gruesome scene.
Your dad made great attempts
to drive the mutt away,
but all he managed
was survive to the next day.
Now, tonight, in Twenty Twenty
the moon is full
and avoiding a massacre
is tonight’s goal.
“Pop’s, your pulling my leg,”
I said with a smile.
He got misty and said,
”Well, kid, wait a while.”
I went about my day
ready for trick-or-treat,
being just ten,
I was after anything sweet.
I walked into town,
collected candy galore,
and headed for home
ready to enjoy my score.
When off to my left,
in the tall grass of the ditch,
I heard a deep growl
with a menacing pitch.
My heart jumped in my throat!
I tried to scream for help!
But all that came out
was just a pathetic yelp.
I ran towards the house!
(In costume it was a jog.)
I turned to see
the blurry image of the dog!
He was bearing down
and I began to sicken,
when my life was spared
because of one stray chicken.
It was crossing the road,
now, please don’t ask me why,
I do know the dog chased it
and I didn’t die.
I burst through the front door,
the men were gathered there,
“Even with the coops locked,
there’s a chance he won’t spare.”
Everyone looked at me,
I needed to respond.
“Don’t send me out there
with that thing from the beyond.”
“Do you doubt me now, Sonny,
knowing what you’ve seen?”
“I believe you, Pops...
’tis the Hound of Halloween!”

Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf

Standing Pretty

I live right in town,
but like taking to the woods,
in search of deer
in their natural neighborhoods.
On the Friday before
hunting’s opening day,
three deer stood in my yard,
just a stone’s throw away.
I stepped on outside
to go to my storage shed.
Only one of the three
even lifted its head.
He had three nice points
on his youthful antler rack.
I looked him in the eye
and he calmly stared back.
I walked out to the shed
and came back with my gear.
This time a doe looked up
but just wiggled her ear.
I went out Saturday
for the food I would need,
I rounded the road’s corner
and had to take heed.
Five deer crossed the road,
remember, we’re still in town.
The fifth deer stopped in the way,
blinking eyes of brown.
Sunday morning
I went to sight in my rifle,
on an empty town lot
stood one, no mere trifle.
He was a six point
with a set of heavy beams.
He was just off the road
and the buck of my dreams.
I thought about his double
out roaming the hills,
which fueled my excitement
for the next day’s thrills.
I was up early Monday
and made it to camp,
and all opening week
through the woods I did tramp.
I did see some sign
and several deer running off.
I heard deer stomp and snort
a warning and a scoff.
As I got home,
a deer darted from my side yard.
I just about hit it
with my pickup’s grill guard.
My wife greeted me
and saw my empty truck bed.
I shrugged my shoulders
and matter-of-factly said,
“Country deer aren’t
lawn ornaments standing pretty.
They leave all that stuff...
to the deer from the city.”

Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf

Picture Day

My son came home from school
with envelope in hand.
It announced the picture day
which would now be well planned.
Right away I called the barber
and scheduled a cut,
then raced off to the department store
like a cracked nut.
I bought him a button-up
and new pair of jeans,
then I explained to him
what picture day really means.
“One school day a year
I get you all groomed and dressed
for a lasting moment-
I want you to look your best.”
“You see, these photos are sent
to all our relatives
and your appearance
is the impression that it gives.”
“We’re trying hard to raise you
without competition,
but my envious sisters
have made it their mission.”
“They place all the kids’ photographs
on your grandma’s fridge,
and point out imperfections
even if it’s a smidge.”
“Grandma always takes the bait
and then I hear from her,
this year we’ll get the best of them
you can bet that, Sir.”
So, picture day came
and I sent him neat as a pin,
but that boy of mine
committed a cardinal sin.
When he came home that day
he was really quite a mess.
What had happened to him
was about anyone’s guess.
I didn’t think much of it,
you know, boys will be boys,
but when two weeks went by,
I certainly made some noise.
I looked at the photos
tucked neatly in the packet
right off I saw my son
in someone else’s jacket!
His hair was all messed up
and there was food on his face!
This was after I made sure
everything was in place!
This was a disaster!
I turned on him like a cat!
The smart answer that he gave me
made me sit down flat.
“What happened to you!?
Answer me now for goodness sakes!”
“Calm down and relax, Mom...
there is a thing called retakes!”

Dominic “Flominic” Farrenkopf