Sunday, July 31, 2011

The Colonic

I was feeling heavy
so I went for a colonic.

The operator hooked me up
much like they used to do with telephones.

Water forced its way into my rectum
clearing out the excess shit and toxins.

Or so I thought before the operator gasped
and fainted on the floor.

Dinosaurs and dodo birds were
spinning in the tubes.

Pixies rode on unicorns
with silver whips and gold batons.

The ten lost tribes of Israel clung onto the
hanging gardens of the ancient Babylon.

I watched as history rejoined itself with myth
to be complete outside my bowels.

Friday, July 29, 2011

The Winnower

Jeremy touched a wilted flower.  It blossomed and he sneezed.  The petals looked undamaged and well nourished.  Jeremy found his eyes and skin a little dryer.  But it didn’t bother him.  There were worse things in the distance.

Screams led him down the block.  Heat grew more intense with every step.  Jeremy continued to unwilt flowers along the way, bringing beauty to a pervasive macabre that had now consumed the sky in black.

Flames began flickering on houses and trees, or they had been already; it was hard to tell.  They mixed with noxious smells, the origin of which Jeremy could not place.  It would have been enough to stop most others in their tracks; Jeremy kept walking.  The city was not far ahead; just another mile.

The trail of new flowers following Jeremy ended abruptly.  Flames consumed them as fast as he absorbed their wounds.  Jeremy stepped onto a winding stretch of broken pavement, mourning the loss.  Cracks forced themselves together as he winced.  There was much work to be done.

Bombs were falling from the sky; bodies strewn, some thrashing in agony.  Jeremy reached his hand out toward the warplanes first.  Their incendiaries dropped, but didn’t fall.  The force had been taken as Jeremy felt an intense spell of vertigo.  He almost lost balance but steadied himself on a still standing fence post.

People were sick.  They needed help.   Jeremy fought his dizziness and aching back.  Legs, arms and heads were gashed; most barely breathing.  He took it all.  The wounds became his own.

Jeremy’s head began to bleed and his breaths slowed.  The people around him came to, not understanding the strange phenomenon.  Some rushed toward to stop Jeremy but felt themselves held back.  The blackness of the sky was turning blue.  Jeremy’s eyes, once green, were gray.

Engines blared; the planes were coming back.  None seemed confident that he could stop them all.  Jeremy, whether he believed or not, looked in the direction of the sound.  Smoke left his entire body in a whirlwind.  The planes approached and hit dead on.  They sputtered, losing all control.

But Jeremy still had more to do.  Burns had scorched the grass and many people’s skin.  Both, found themselves renewed.  But Jeremy had finally taken on too much.  He collapsed.  A young man managed to rush up and catch him before he fell.  Jeremy smiled, though the smoke had rendered him blind.

“Why did you do this all?” The young man asked.

Jeremy could barely speak.  The young man told the others the best that he deciphered from the near inaudible gasps.

“What did he say?” They asked.

“He said… for life.”

It was apparent Jeremy was fading fast.  The healed formed a circle and said a prayer in his last moments.  He was then carried outside the city and laid on resurrected flowers that were more than happy to embrace him.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Scraping the Surface

Scraping the surface–
Or so I wished.
I’d take the surface.
Like an astronaut.
But even that’s a
Rocket ride away.
And I can’t do the math
To get from A to B.

So I stare up at others’ footprints,
As I think of moondust in my shoes,
Kicking back and soaking up the sun
Without an atmosphere.  Now, that’d be nice.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ten Minutes in Heaven

Ben Ditmars' collection of plays, Ten Minutes in Heaven is now Available on Amazon for Kindle and Print.

I've put a new book up on Kindle titled Ten Minutes in Heaven.  I think you'll really like it.  It's a compilation of ten minute plays.  I've posted several here on blog, but with the exception of Jumper, these are all new. You can find it on Facebook or Kindle.  I might do Nook too if anyone shows interest in that.  In the meantime, however, enjoy these fake celebrity endorsements.

President Barack Obama:  This book is leading America to a new light of freedom.

Pope Benedict XVI:  I read Ten Minutes in Heaven and it really felt like the game Ten Minutes in Heaven.  It's just that good.

Ben Ditmars:  Of course, I like it.  I wrote it!

Monday, July 25, 2011


I see her smile
But it’s posed,
A show for cameras.
Her eyes are crying,
Dry, but wet.
Hair’s done up
That wants to fall.
Hands ache to reach
For liquor bottles, anything
To quell the pain.  But inside
A heart is crying out,
Knowing drugs can’t
Fill the void.  They’ll
Only push the fateful day
An inch or two ahead.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

For Amy

A heart and mind
Too strong to deal.

All that soul.
And all that jazz.

Music was her therapy
But couldn’t save her.

Thus, it settled saving us
With subtle tones,
Heart rending words
That will live on,
Though Amy can’t.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Poet Tree

Adjectives can reach the sky
Verbs they’ll branch and sway with wind
Nouns are cones that hit the ground
Pronouns skip them in the stream.

Friday, July 22, 2011

If I Die Young by the Band Perry: Special Extended Edition!

If I die young, bury me in satin
Lay me down on a, bed of roses,
I hope that it’s my neighbor’s,
And let my dog piss on them,
But also if you have time,
Sink me in the river, at dawn
Send me away with the words of a love song
Preferably by Sara Bareilles
Or you could even play Bottle it Up
Man, that jam was pretty fucking sweet.

Uh oh, uh oh

Lord make me a rainbow, I'll shine down on my mother,
What’s that, fuck him, I didn’t forget my father…
She'll know I'm safe with you when she stands under my colors, oh and
Life ain't always what you think it ought to be, no
Ain't even grey, but she buries her baby
‘Cause daddy’s not invited.

The sharp knife of a short life, well
I've had, just enough time
To die in a rumble ala West Side Story.

If I die young, bury me in satin
Lay me down on a, bed of roses,
Make my neighbor watch then
Sink me in the river, at dawn
Send me away with the words of a love song
Maybe Elton John if you can’t find some Bareilles.

The sharp knife of a short life, well
I've had, just enough time
To stab that Shark, Bernardo.

And I'll be wearing white, when I come into your kingdom
I'm as green as the ring on my little, cold finger, You
Could say I’m Green Lantern only just a little deader
But it sure felt nice when Ryan Reynold’s held my hand in three dimensions
Who would have thought forever could be severed by
Hate, you killed him with your hate, not with bullets, or with guns. Well now I can kill, too, because now I have hate!

So put on your vest Jets and I'll wear my pearls
What I never did is done

A penny for my thoughts, oh no, I'll sell them for a dollar
They're worth so much more after Rif’s a goner
And maybe then you'll hear Maria’s been singin'
Funny when Tony’s dead how people start listenin…

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


A coward’s but a hero is disguise
With all to gain and not to lose.
Who’s to say they’ll never rise?

Maybe I just love redemption.
Maybe I just hate perfection.

Villain is a label for all
We can’t perceive and are
Judgmental or appalled.

Maybe I just love redemption.
Maybe I just hate perfection.

Bigot, chauvinist and racist –
Terms for those we’ve left behind
To half-exist.

Maybe I just love redemption.
Maybe I just hate perfection.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Good Crystal

His wife had yelled at him again.  Sinclair did not yell back; rather, he did what he had always done.  In a drawer, behind his underwear and socks he hid a box.  Inside this secret box were several necklaces and rings; gold, silver, platinum and the like.  These were a distraction.  Underneath the assorted jewelry and another wooden layer laid the true secret: a crystal.  It wasn’t anything particularly special on the surface.  It was transparent and pretty, of course, but so were others.  What was inside mattered.

Sinclair took out the crystal and held it toward the light.  It shimmered as he closed his eyes.  Bulbs burst inside the ceiling fan.  His hairs stood up on end; blue aura encompassed him.  The crystal was absorbing.  Sinclair thought that after twenty years he would finally control it but he was wrong.  It had taken too much again.

Every time the crystal grew stronger and him weaker.  It was a small price to pay, he thought.  His wife, Rebecca, would never know his anger as his old wife had.  She had left him and he deserved it; Sinclair did not deny it in his mind.

“Sinclair!” Rebecca yelled, coming up the stairs.  He reached for the crystal still floating midair.  He grasped it as she turned the knob.

“You never stand up for yourself!”

“I’m sorry,” he replied, hiding the crystal behind him.

“What’s that you’re holding?”

“Nothing… just standing casually.”

“Let me see it.”

“Let you see what?”


He gave in, holding out the crystal toward her.

“Is that…”

Sinclair held his breath.  Could she possibly know?

“A present for me?”

“Um,” he began thinking, “it is!”

“It’s beautiful.”

Rebecca took it in her hand.  Sinclair was relieved to see her happy.

“I hope you like it.”

“How couldn’t I?”

Her face changed.  It was as if she were choking.  Rebecca’s cheeks began to bleed.  Bruises took over her arms.  Hair was being pulled by some sinister, invisible force.  Sinclair ran toward her, ripping the crystal out of her hand.  It turned on him.  His leg twisted and his back broke instantly.  He couldn’t move.  Rebecca was still.  Had she?  No.  Sinclair refused to believe it had happened again.

She would get better and leave him, of course; but she would still be okay, just like Suzanne.  But Rebecca wasn’t breathing like Suzanne.  It was all he saw.  His neck couldn’t turn.  The crystal still glowed, releasing years of pent up rage.

Sinclair’s eyes closed but the flashing didn’t go away; it couldn’t.  Every instance of light reminded him; why had he given it so much…

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Because You're Worth It!




An office with cubicles.

            [JACK is typing on the computer before suddenly realizing the audience]

Oh, hi there!  My name is Jack.  It’s the year 2024 and the world is finally rid of government!  Let’s take a look!
            [Starts walking between cubicles]
Without pesky regulation the market was finally allowed to flourish.  It takes care of all of us, like a big ole daddy!  Here comes the boss now; that entrepreneur, that master of industry!

            [BOSS gives JACK a noogie and slaps the rear of REGINA, a female.employee]

[To Regina]
I’ll see you in my office or
            [Points and winks]
You’re fired.

            [REGINA weeps openly]

Isn’t that right, Regina?  A big ole daddy?

            [She nods through sobbing]

Don’t feel bad for Regina.  She’s got a job, after all.

I wish I were dead.

That’s a poor attitude.  At least you can afford to eat.

I ate half a slice of bread for dinner last night.  My landlord’s evicting me because I don’t look attractive enough.

Hey, now, it’s his property.  You don’t have to live there.  Let’s move on! 
            [Starts walking]
Bathroom breaks were terrible for productivity into the twentieth and twenty-first century.  Now… there aren’t any!
            [He approaches another employee, TED, who is squirming as if needing to pee]
Isn’t that right, Ted?

Yes.  Can I go yet?

How many breaks have you taken today?

One… at lunch.

See now, you did it on your own time.  Keep it up!

I only got two minutes for lunch and that’s because the manager had fallen asleep.

Work hard and maybe you can sleep too!  The possibilities are endless in our corporate paradise!

I guess…

[Patting Ted’s back]
Good man.
            [Walks away]
A lot of people were worried about healthcare a decade or so ago.  The problem, I’m proud to say, was finally solved: by incinerating the sick!
            [Approaches a sickly looking JOANNE]
How’s that jaundice, Joanne?

[Through gritted teeth]
What jaundice?

Oh, that Joanne!  I’ll give her another week before corporate turns the flames back on.  Let’s go and see the break room.
            [Takes another corner]
I bet you thought I was serious for a second.  There are no break rooms.  There are torture chambers, though.  Corporal punishment is returning in a big, big way.  Isn’t that right, Ned?  Don’t be shy!


Why so shaky, Ned?
I was just lashed for forty minutes straight.

And I bet you learned your lesson, didn’t you?

Yes, no more yawns that sound like sighs.

That’s right.  Isn’t he a trooper?

            [A siren sounds]

That must mean another revolution!  I’m going to go die valiantly for my corporate leaders now.  Thank you for watching this promotional play.  Remember, together, we can and will keep the market free!

            [BOSS, TED, JOANNE, NED and JACK all give meek thumbs up]


Friday, July 15, 2011

The Rhyme

Some people tell you that poetry should rhyme
But it’s not a perfect world – there’s not always a verse
Or a melody when things go wrong.

Expression’s in our souls
It comes out through our hands
And might not please the ear.
But there’s more to us than that,
More places it can touch.

I feel words in my heart
The aching in my back.
Things I should have said
But never got the chance.

That line sooths a memory,
Second verse a romance.
Find faith in a stanza,
Epic or a lyric.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


A creature lost in dark of night,
In bright of day. You’ll see him,
Though you’ll never see him.
Ghosts can sift through walls
And he can too.

You’ll know he’s there,
You’ll feel him up your spine,
Tingling your back – and gone!
Before you turn or blink your eyes
He’s dissipated into cloud.

Dark and shade will linger on
To cast a dimming memory,
A question mark, hyperbole
Atop this masked and nameless man,
Savant of shadow.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Play for My Lovies



MUHAMMAD SMITH: An alien who looks astonishingly human besides the fact he’s green.
BETH RICHARDS: Irate employee.

A Subway sandwich shop.

            [BETH RICHARDS is throwing meat into containers]

Searching planet… animal tissue, plant matter, wood, glass, metals, electricity... dominant life forms…. Preparing to land.

            [Door opens]

Hi welcome to Subway.

And a hello to you, my name is Muhammad Smith, taken from Earth’s most two populous names in attempt to lull you into false sublimity and secure invasion.

[Rolling eyes]
What kind of sub?

On my home planet it is rude to interrupt!  You are lucky to still be alive.  BUT, as I was saying… I have come to colonize your puny race!


What kind of bread?

All human beings shall tremble underneath the weight of our atomic guns!

[Getting him white]
American, provolone or pepperjack?

The bombing will commence in just two more minutes!

[Getting him American]
Would you like that toasted?

[Pointing ray gun]
No, I would like you toasted!  With the rest of your kind!

[Moving on]
The works with that?

[Putting ray gun on BETH’s temple]
Surrender your resources or be destroyed!

            [BETH starts giving him the works]

Not exactly what I had in mind… but looks good.

For here or to go?

The invasion is still here!  Don’t think you’ve won me over with your fresh produce!

[Going to check out]
Do you have a Subway rewards card?


Do you want one?

Yes, surrender it!

[Giving him the card]
Do you want to make that a meal?

I suppose....

Your total is $7.35.

[Fumbling in wallet]
Stupid earth money…
            [Hands BETH some bills]

[Holding up currency]
I’m sorry sir, we don’t accept Reichsmarks.

What?  Why?  One earth currency is surely as good as another!

This is the United States of America.  We use the dollar.

            [MUHAMMAD SMITH fumbles in wallet again]

[Handing BETH more bills]
How about these?

[With a glance]
These are Canadian dollars.

My readout displayed Canada as North America.

It is America but not the United States of America.

[Fumbling in wallet]
Picky, picky…
            [Hands BETH severely old looking bills]

I have no idea what these are.  Why do they say Confederate States of America?

I gave what you asked for… dollars from American states united!

[Remembering hard]
The Confederate States of America were a different government that broke away.

Okay, one last try.
            [Gives BETH a card from his wallet]

A WW2 ration card!?  Where do you get these things!?

It is from the current government is it not?


Then it’s good!


[Handing him his bag]
I guess.
            [Puts own money in register]

Thank you!  I have now colonized your planet and extracted its resources!  My work here is done.  Care to come with me by chance?

Uh, no.

I’d make it worth your while.

How so?

You would have the honor of reproducing with me.

You call that an honor?

Of course, on my planet you’d be considered a queen!

You worship underemployed food service employees back home?

Indeed.  It is one of the resources I’m searching for.

I’ll get my coat.

First, my queen – your crown!
            [Presents her a cardboard Burger King crown]

I can feel the royalty already.

End of play

Monday, July 11, 2011

A Poem I Came Across on Poetry Daily

I've subscribed to Poetry Daily for some time now.  Where I appreciate the classics I'm also interested in what more modern poets write.  Sometimes I skim, sometimes something really catches my eye.  Today was the latter.  I found a poem that really spoke to me, translated from Hebrew.  Hopefully any violation of copyright is forgivable.

Songs of the Strange Woman
translated from the Hebrew by Annie Kantar

I am green and fresh as a song through the grass,
I am deep and soft as the nest of a bird.
I'm from days long past,
from a forest, where I learned to breathe,
from the languor of lovers asleep in the grass.
I'm from there—
the village of small winds.
On a far hill there was a windmill,
and the sky hung on its wing
clouds mingled with smoke.
The wind comes and the wind goes.
I'm from the land that taps with wooden spoons
—from there.

Windmill, O windmill,
on what shore did the gulls call
the name of my dead country?
Windmill, O windmill.
Along which street did the travelers pass,
sensing the sunset's kingdom
against their backs,
though they didn't turn their heads?
And the wings whirled in the wind.
is the garden
red with autumn
that covered its shadows,
hid twilight in its leaves
and let the breeze pass through?
The wind called with the gull
the name of my dead country—
and here am I, silent and free,
windmill, O windmill!

I was yours, land of low winds,
my heart carries each drop of your rain.
Stumbling, I'll bring—
no angel will help me—
mushrooms from your woods
to the kingdom of heaven.
In my kingdom of heaven,
they still remember your feast.
A cheerful harmonica plays the Song of the Dead.
One star is tangled in the windmill,
turning round, turning round—
but I'm already old and gray, and no one will dance with me.
Still, the gate is open, so I'll join the feast,
unlace my shoes and sit in the shade.
My face will gently flow down the faltering stream,
my face from the shore
of your river—
bright when I remember—
windmill, O windmill.

Friday, July 08, 2011


I hear the blameless blamed
corroded, cast down into rhetoric,
crushed with punctuation and inflection.

Soulless, salivating saps will feed
and suck the rich tits dry, we’re told.
I’ve never seen them nursing though.

Nor known a bottle given halfway full,
of more than Social Darwinism,
other filth philosophies that

Seek to tear the weak apart
and feed our overlord hyenas
in vain tributes that will never satisfy
voracious appetites.

Thursday, July 07, 2011

Entirety of a Sketch That Didn't Fizzle (It's Just Short Like That)

The Adventures of Eddy Piss

Hey, baby.


You have my mom’s glasses.

My dad wears that coat…

            [They make out]


Son, why is there a bomb strapped to my chair?

I hate your balls!

What's going on in here?


Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Beginnings of a Sketch That Fizzled Out

Tonight on NBC Nightly News I interview the man responsible for what some are calling the worst nervous breakdown in recent history.  Lou Cochran, 35 went on an orgy of theft and violence; stealing cars, robbing banks and burning franchises of Orange Julius.  He was apprehended in a high speed chase through four different states, having stopped to refill his gas tank several times.  The police, caught continually unaware as he casually filled his tank and several containers before driving off.  Mr. Cochran, why did they even allow you to test drive a Bugatti Veyron Super Sport?

I stole your credit card.

[Checking wallet]

Just messing with you Brian.  I said I was George Clooney.

And they believed you?

Why wouldn’t they?

You look nothing like him, for one.

How about now?
            [Puts on a grayish wig]         

I must say I’m starting to see the resemblance.

It’s just that easy.

It’s rumored you could be spending up to 140 years in prison.

I wouldn’t worry about it.

Why not?
I stole enough to bribe the judge.

These are serious allegations.  What crisis brought you to this level?

Monday, July 04, 2011

The Loneliest Man on Earth

Rick Henderson was born July 4,, 2009 on a Saturday night.  The hospital was virtually empty.  Most, of the staff it seemed were out celebrating; drinking, partying, setting off fireworks.  But not Ms. Henderson held up in labor.  Granted, however, she had been.  In the midst of beer bongs and keg stands her water broke.  The remaining sober individual who had only just gotten there managed to call an ambulance.  Ms. Henderson took it with a grain of salt; texting and planning her next barhop with friends.  She accepted as much sedative allowed as the labor went on.  If Ms. Henderson felt anything she barely showed it.  Facebook consumed more of her attention than the glimpse of her first child.  On hearing it later cry, presumably thinking it another baby, she had stated, I sure hope it’s not mine.  These were the symbolic beginnings of a man casually, but far from intimately known to the world as Ricky.

He was an only child treated as a middle.  Ms. Henderson hardly worked yet she was seldom around.  The television raised young Ricky the best that it could, which all things considered was not very.  He didn’t get the Discovery or History Channel, merely basics; cartoons, the occasional old movie, etc. Nothing you might call substantial.

You can surmise from this that Ricky was behind in Kindergarten.  He hadn’t the advantage of preschool or an involved parental unit.  His social skills were atrocious, having had no friends and barely seen another child.  It was a small wonder he could talk at all.

The best you could say of Ricky therefore was that he got by, as his second grade teacher Mrs. Wilder had put it.  She wanted Ricky to apply himself but in the back of her mind had trouble seeing him amounting to much.  The world was just set against him she often thought.  Maybe if he lacked merely ten advantages he would have a shot; but poor Ricky seemed to lack them all.

He grew up isolated and unmotivated.  Adolescence brought more problems, with Ricky getting into fights.  Subconsciously, it was a grab at attention.  Physically, it tore him up.  He was not a large boy; nor was he fast, quick, good on his feet or anything of that.  The pain must have made him happy, feel belonging at some level.  It was the only reason any one could think of that he picked on kids so much bigger than himself.  Yet, the phase passed as most phases do.

Ricky retreated to other forms of release.  He started smoking early on in High School but it never made him cool.  He was still a social reject only in it for the rush.

At some point he moved onto other drugs; pot, meth and the like.  Pot never did it for him.  It was cheaper than the others but couldn’t manage to numb Ricky satisfactorily.  Meth helped but never did the job as well as heroine.  The needle brought the pain and pleasure needed like no other substance could.

Ricky was lost in it.  But he didn’t care.  He stole money and no expected better of him.  His High School Principle Mr. Chambers went as far to use him as an example in the next assembly on drug prevention.  But, sadly, nothing in the assembly was focused on helping those already in Ricky’s condition.

The spiral continued downward.  He wasn’t saved.  How could he be?

Using gave way to dealing.  The heroine and acceptance from customers seemed a dream come true at first.  But they were casual friends, uninterested in anything but drugs.  Ricky tried pretending otherwise but deep down struggled with the reality, as high as he often was.

They left him just like his mother had.  He hadn’t moved beyond the television raising him.  It was still there, with the same dull channels; and it was all he had.

Ricky looked over at some cocaine he was getting ready to cut.  The razor blades were still out like they always were.  They weren’t really there for cutting.  Ricky had been building up the courage for some time.  “It could be over, right now,” he said to himself. 

His mind had a million reasons to end it and only one not to: uncertainty.  Was nothingness better?  Ricky had never believed in a God.  He was an atheist of sorts, but never that vocal of one.  It seemed a contradiction, but he was adamant on not being merely agnostic.  It seemed stronger, more purposeful to say no completely.

But.  He couldn’t go on living like he was.  That much was certain.  Ricky, dropped his needle on the floor, he wouldn’t need it any longer.  Looking at the cocaine and then the razor blades, Ricky took a deep breath and chose nothingness.

Friday, July 01, 2011

A Troll Who's Burned Its Bridge

I’m the troll who's burned its bridge
and dared to face the elements.
Moonlight shines my ugliness
on water and I see.

Teeth and tusks
with nails too long,
old rags for clothes
and absent shoes.

A nose contorts with
pointed ears as hair
sticks out in droves.
Eyes, such hollow eyes…

I long for sun
to turn me stone.
Or three billygoats to pass
so I can threaten them but really
just have company.