Poetry from Michael Lee Johnson

My Life
My Life
My Life

By Michael Lee Johnson


My life began with a skeleton 

with a smile and bubbling eyes

in my garden of dandelions.

Everything else fell off the edge,

a jigsaw puzzle piece cut in half.

When young, I pressed

against my mother’s breast,

but youthful memories fell short.

I tried at 8 to kiss my father, 

but he was a welder, fox hunter,

coon hunter, and voyeuristic man.

My young life was a mixture

of black, white, dark dreams,

and mellow yellow sun bright hopes.

Rewind, sunshine was a stranger

in dandelion fields,

shadows in my eyes.

I grabbed my injured legs

leap forward into the future.

I’m now a vitamin C boy

it keeps me immured

from catching colds or Covid-19.

Everything now still leaks, in parts,

but I press forward.
How Jesus Must Have Felt
Jesus and How 

He Must Have Felt (V3)


Staggering out Wee-Willy's

dumpy dive bar, droopy eyes,

my feelings desensitizing,

confusing my avocado fart,

at 3:20 a.m., with last night

splash on Brut aftershave.

Whispering to my outcast

self-sounding is more like pending death.

My body detaching from myself,

numbed by winter's fingers.

I creak up these outside stairs

to my apartment after an all-night drunk,

cheap Tesco's Windsor Castle

London Dry Gin—on the rocks.

I thought of Jesus

how He must have felt

during His resurrection

dragging His holy body

up that endless stairwell

spiraling toward heaven.
Most Poems
Most Poems
Most Poems

By Michael Lee Johnson


Most poems are pounded out

in emotional flesh, sometimes

physical skin scalped feelings.

It’s a Jesus hanging on a cross

a Mary kneeling at the bottom

not knotted in love but roped,

a blade of a bowie knife


I look for the kicker line

the close at the bottom

seek a public poetry forum

to cheer my aspirations on.

I hear those faraway voices

carrying my life away-

a retreat into insanity.
Poets In the Rain
Poets in the Rain (V4)

By Michael Lee Johnson


All poets are crazy. Listen to them soak

sponge in early rain medley notes sounding off.

Crazy, and suicidal, we know who they are:

Edgar Allan Poe, Sylvia Plath, Dylan Thomas

the drunk, Anne Sexton, Teasdale.

This group grows a Pinocchio nose.

At times I capture you here under control.

I want to inspect you.

All can be found in faith once

now gone in time.

With all your concerns, I see

your eyes layered in shades of green,

confused within you about me.

Forgive me; I’m just a touch

of wild pepper, dry Screaming Eagle

Cabernet Sauvignon, and dying selfishly.  

We don’t know if it is all worth it.

I have refined my image, and my taste

continues to thrust inside your crevices.

Templates of hell break loose thunder, belches, and anomie.

Asteroid Ceres looks like you are passing gas,

exposes her buttocks, and moves on just like ice

on a balmy rock just like yours.

I will wait centuries, like critics, to review

this fecund body of yours-

soiled, then poppies,

poetry in the rain.
Michael Lee Johnson
Michael Lee Johnson lived ten years in Canada during the Vietnam era. Today he is a poet in the greater Chicagoland area, IL.  He has 272 YouTube poetry videos. Michael Lee Johnson is an internationally published poet in 44 countries, has several published poetry books, has been nominated for five Pushcart Prize awards and six Best of the Net nominations. 

He is editor-in-chief of three poetry anthologies, all available on Amazon, and has several poetry books and chapbooks. He has over 443 published poems. Michael is the administrator of six Facebook Poetry groups. Member of the Illinois State Poetry Society. Do not forget to consider me for Best of the Net or Pushcart nomination!