News Poetry: “Even the Good Guys Have Blood on their Hands”

One • has • to wonder • if

even • amid • the dangerous
embarrassment • of a show-

boat • bully • as POTUS

if • alone • in his study
Barack’s • night eye • doesn’t

catch • a nightmare • gleam• off

his awards shelf • That he • doesn’t
see • the reflective • trompe l’oeil • of

faces • Young lads • & • old crones

caught • in the unconscious
collateral damage • of the drones

& • annihilated

All • with the wave of
his • signature’s • wand


Photo credit: AK Rockefeller, Creative Commons, Flickr 

Art Goodtimes is an American poet, farmer and politician in Colorado. Goodtimes was first elected to the San Miguel County Board of Commissioners in 1996 as a Democrat. He switched to the Green Party of Colorado in 1998 and was re-elected in 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012. He is a noted poet and writer of several books and the poet laureate of the Telluride Mushroom Festival. He grew up in California and graduated from San Francisco State Universityin 1970. He has also served as co-chair of the Green Party of Colorado.


  1. Thanks for the Goodtimes poem. It’s easy to slam the current POTUS, but it is more important to remember that he just represents a new low in the downward vicious cycle that every president has participated in going back to our failure to take a higher road after 9/11/2001. As POTUS Rex rattles the nuclear sabre today, one wonders how low this vicious cycle can go before it bottoms out, if ever….
    – George Sibley, Gunnison

  2. Creativity and perspective are the basis of good commentary and Art is unmatched in both areas. The music of our times has reflected, informed and sometimes driven current events. The welcome inclusion of poets such as Goodtimes can bring that same passion and contribute mightily to our dialogue in troubled and interesting times.

  3. Classic Goodtimes. Interesting use of the term ‘trompe l’oeil’. One could call it Trump l’craie. Sidwalk art where your perception is so distorted you might patriotically trip and fall into the beautiful 3D mushroom (cloud).

    You want collateral damage? We got that, lots of it. It’s one of our signature products.

  4. I certainly felt Mr. O’s itchy fortuitous tringer finger was not only incongruent with his manner, promises, and political affiliation, but as butt ugly a picture of blood lust for political expediency as could be imagined, even if left up to Stepen King. But the question I have to ask EVERYBODY is this: How much energy do you put into discovering the ‘good’ things POTI might do…even if it means walking in someone else’s cultural/political zoris a few…feet. If we all would focus on good, we would ‘hit’ good, for any fool know where you look is where you go.

  5. Good poem. It is the history of the empire which we must especially remember today Nagasaki day seventy-two years ago, the same year as the birth of our poet GoodTimes.

    Rafael Jesús González

    Poet Laureate of Berkeley, California

  6. Strong poem, Art. Sad reality of our living – and our dying. Thanks to CI for jumpstarting this page again.

  7. I now consider Art, in his potato farming poet retirement status the new hipster rapper of the Western Slope. We all have blood on our hands – hands & minds that are infinitely capable of wiser actions.

  8. I’d like to point out this one nuance: trompe l’oeil ( fool the eye ) is not the French for ” fool ” ( as in le fou, say in the tarot ) but for ” deceive “. Maybe that matters…

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