Jeff Anderson


Jeff Anderson was a Milwaukee Public High School Science Instructor for 30 years, finishing up his teaching career as a Mentor Teacher for first year instructors.  Retiring to Lincoln County Wisconsin, Jeff joined Poetry Pals at the Oneida County Senior Center.  Jeff created and facilitates Better Health at Your Fingertips Through Writing as a biweekly creative writing course as well as presenting monthly with Poetic Moments and facilitating the Moose Lodge Writer’s Circle in the back of Tula’s restaurant.  In retirement, Jeff continues to maintain bee hives, a vineyard and mixed fruit orchard, and often sits by the fire ring enjoying smells, snaps, crackles, and pops.

Jeff’s poetry has appeared in several WFOP yearly calendars, the Nicolet College Poetry month blog, as well as articles in The Country Today newspaper and several poetry chapbooks gathering dust on the shelves of his grandchildren’s rooms until the day they ask, “where did this come from?”


Lessons Begun in Kindergarten

The child of the giant
So very small, in a fragile sort of way
Playing with his blocks, his bridges
His farm animals, his cowboys and Indians
His green cast plastic army men that melt beneath the magnifying glass
Held by outer space demi-gods who profess no religion
Other than destruction, then regret

That child of the giant
Will learn that letters on blocks spell words that may earn a slap of sorts
That cowboys die of cigarette smoke, that native Americans are angry,
That pigs unwillingly make bacon; cows, regrettably, have a stake in this
That men shoot real bullets, making real holes, then melt away
That bridges take little boys, perhaps never to return
That demi-gods galore rejoice in regret

Filling in the Blank

This poet asks at sunrise
What more is there to offer
To give, there must be that from whence one takes

This morning, a beauty of a sunrise awaited praise
Yet, my thoughts, a pantry of bare shelves

Dipping into an old cauldron, almost empty
Looking deep into the pool, now a drying void
Aware there are still words; perhaps enough

The palette becomes a swirl of undecipherable disorder
Awaiting sequence, as the sun advances toward sunset