24 May, 2017

NHL - Do Or Die!


There’s  nothing more to show you,
there’s not much more to say
You know the mess they made here, 
Will not just fade away

It's what they get for acting,
Like a bunch of inept swine
Now they must pay the piper, 
The Stanley Cup is on the line.

The NHL has got to change the way 
They do the things they do.
And everyone must get on board 
For the league to make it through!

It's do or die, 
They’ve got to turn this thing around
That’s not a  lie, 
Their credibility’s going down!

It's do or die, 
They’ve got to learn, 
or they'll go down.
There’s no savior here 
To teach them how to clear
This stain upon the crown.
It’s up to them, not me or you.

There are no easy answers; 
there are no magic tricks
It  can't wait until tomorrow,
They must find and apply a fix! 

They  must join with hockey’s warriors, 
And help them expunge this horrible scar
The vulnerability is crystal clear, 
And the shame has spread so far.

They’ve got to draw a line 
Or make a full retreat.
There’s not much that will  help,
But they can’t admit defeat.

It's do or die, 
They’ve got to learn, 
or they'll go down.
There’s no savior here 
To teach them how to clear
This stain upon the crown.
It’s up to them, not me or you.

23 May, 2017

Take It to The Limit


On your own at the heart of the arena
With, the bright lights bearing down on you.
You think about the crowds who have loved you,
And how to make their dreams come true.

You have always been a dreamer
Spent your life breaking ground.
Now, there’s a steep path before you,
Are you up to the climb?

In the face of this challenge.
Don’t think of slowing down.
These dreams you've dreamed lately are pointing out,
And bringing out, and calling out the same.

So, get out on the ice way and plot a straight line
Now’s the time to rise and to shine.
You must go all out for the glory,
Make your play so wonderfully fine.
And take it to the limit one more time!

It’s all coming together before you
Your eyes are beginning to shine.
Now you're reaching for victory 
You must dare and must do.

As you looking for victory, and you’re nearing the door,
If you’re knocked down, get off of the floor. 
You have so much to believe in - keep coming back,
Come running back, and triumph once more.

So, get out on the ice way and plot a straight line
Now’s the time to rise and to shine.
You must go all out for the glory,
Make your play so wonderfully fine.
And take it to the limit one more time!

Take it to the limit – Sixteen; 
Take it to the limit – Sixteen;
Please, take it to the limit
One more time!

16 May, 2017

The Card Not Played

At times the ultimate winning card
Is the one you never played.
Sometimes your most brilliant deal
Is the one you never made.

In sports, there are trading deadlines
Pressure rises as they come near
The best act from conviction.
The rest act out of fear!

In the Hockey town of Pittsburgh,
Two goalies stood in line.
One played often and superbly.
The other often rode the pine.

Then, on the brink of battle,
A cruel trick of fate was played.
And into the glaring spotlight
Flower strode out from the shade!

The “best teammate in sports.”
He’s called by one who would know.
Calmly the Flower went forth
His courage and true character to show.

When the history is reported,
Of how in the Penguins played,
On the role of Honor,
Will be the trade that wasn’t made!

Win or lose it is certain
Now that fourteen games are down,
If Lord Stanley’s Cup returns,
The Flower will deserve the victors' crown.

So, learn this valuable lesson,
And do not let it fade.
In life's ongoing gamble, the winning card,
Often proves to be the very one not played!

Larry Conley
16 May 2017
@ 19:43

09 May, 2017

Come Back Strong

When the play goes wrong, as it does at times,
When your tactics fail, and their pressure climbs,
When the minutes shrink and their points soar,
And you want to win but have yet to score.
When they are pressing you quite a bit,
Respond with your best, but never quit.

Hockey takes many twists and turns,
As every team eventually learns,
And many a streak can turn about,
So never give in. You must stick it out,
Don't relent though the odds seem long,
When knocked down, come back strong.

Too often competitors just give up,
When resolute efforts could capture Lord Stanley’s Cup,
And they learn too late when the curtain comes down,
How close they were to the victor’s crown,
So, despite frustration, fatigue, and pain,
Dig deep into your souls and come back again.

Victory is defeat completely turned around,
And it often comes to teams who rebound,
And you never know exactly how close you are,
Triumph may be near though it seems afar,
So, continue to battle no matter how hard the hit,
It's when all seems lost that you must refuse to quit.

Written after game six on Monday 08 May 2017to inspire the Penguins to valor and victory in game seven on Wednesday 10 May 2017!

03 May, 2017

Sunshine Patriots

          Seven days after the worst ever attack on the United States, [9 September 2001], no elected Democratic politician at any level made any claim or suggestion that the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon were due to nefarious or negligent acts by the Bush administration. Seven days after the Patriots Day bombings in Boston, however, numerous elected Republicans either in or out of office are making such scurrilous charges against the Obama administration. For example:

           A Republican state legislator in New Hampshire, Stella Tremblay, is claiming        that the United States government is responsible for the Boston Marathon bombing.

State Rep. Stella Tremblay (R-Auburn) posted on conservative talk show host Glenn Beck's Facebook page Friday that the attack and the subsequent search for suspects was playing out how Beck had suggested. She said the bombings were a plot by the federal government, and included a link to a video from another conservative talk show host Alex Jones, in which Jones also claims the federal government planned the bombing. Tremblay's message to Beck was posted Friday morning, before suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was arrested.

"Just as you said would happen. Top Down, Bottom UP. The Boston Marathon was a Black Ops "terrorist" attack. One suspect killed, the other one will be too before they even have a chance to speak. Drones and now "terrorist" attacks by our own Government". Sad day, but a "wake up" to all of us. First there was a "suspect" then there wasn't  Info wars broke the story and they knew they had been "found out". 

           It is not merely some obscure state legislator, however, who is exploiting an attack on our nation to advance a partisan agenda. Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said Thursday "the administration is to blame for not preventing last week's terror attack at the Boston Marathon finish line." Mr. Graham is a shameless partisan who deserves to be repudiated by every sane and patriotic American. Nonetheless, he is invited on national television shows and treated as a person of consequence.  

     Graham went into some detail about his paranoid contentions.  Asked if Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano bears responsibility for allowing Tamerlan Tsarnaev to fall through the cracks of federal agencies, Graham said the fault falls on a broader scale.
          "I have no idea who bears the blame. I just know the system is broken. The ultimate  blame I think is with the administration," he told CNN on Capitol Hill. "The FBI and the CIA are, they have great people but you know we're going backwards in national security. Benghazi and Boston to me are examples of us going backward." Note that he admits he "has no idea." He declines to acknowledge that he also has no evidence to support his accusations.

            House Intelligence Committee Chair Mike Rogers had suggested that Boston Marathon bombing suspect Tsarnaev received his Miranda rights too soon. Rogers, a Michigan Republican and former FBI agent, complained that a federal magistrate had possibly stopped the FBI from gaining valuable intelligence by stepping in to advise the suspect of his legal rights.
“We can’t have, in a case like this, the judiciary deciding because it’s on TV, and it might look bad for them, to allow the public safety exemption, which is deemed legal by the US supreme court, that they were somehow going to intercede in this,” he said on Andrea Mitchell ReportsThursday.
Rogers called the judicial intervention “confusing, horrible, god awful policy” and “dangerous to the greater community.”
            Comments such as those by Ms. Tremblay, Mr. Jones, and Senator Graham exemplify the sorry state of American political discourse. Wild accusations without out evident foundation hurled into the air waves in pursuit of partisan advantage. Too often the reporters or interviewers act as facilitators for this toxic speech and fail to challenge the basis of the accusations.  Patriotism is a noble sentiment and one which all Americans should be ready, willing and able to feel. Unfortunately authentic patriotism must compete with counterfeit patriotism such as that exhibited by Ms. Tremblay, Mr. Beck, Mr. Jones, and Senator Graham. 

Ruffians Must Not Prosper

Ruffians must not prosper.
Nor brutality succeed.
For if they do, the game we love,
Becomes a travesty indeed!

Hockey’s primarily a game of spirit, skill, and speed.
Malicious play and goons on skates are something to abhor.
And act against with fortitude,
Till it is banned forevermore. 

Though some may say “It’s physical” to explain it away,
The truth is that it’s a tactic and cynical to boot. 
For far too long the NHL has let this slide,
Now it’s time to take a stand and admit this is not “A hockey play!”.

When thuggery runs rampant on the ice,
The sport dies a lingering death.
When it besmirches the playoffs,
Hockey’s drawing a labored and ragged breath.

Rules need rewriting.
And officials must take the chance
To protect players, who at their best,
Exemplify hockey in its truest excellence!

I wrote this after the blatant mugging of Sidney Crosby by two Washington Capitals Players – one of them a former teammate. This malicious play exemplified Hockey at its worst, and the injury sidelined the player who personifies Hockey at its best. All in all, a low point for a wonderful sport.

Larry Conley
02 May 2017

28 April, 2017

Courage Doesn't Always Roar


This poem is a follow-up to one I sent to Sidney Crosby, Captain of the Pittsburgh Penguins, before the start of the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs. It was written prior to the first game of the second round in which the Penguins meet their arch rivals the Washington Capitals.  The Capitals are taller, heavier, and younger than the Penguins. The Capitals play a physical game that emphasizes intimidation; the Penguins play a game that emphasizes speed, skill, and a resolute spirit.
In the first game of Round 2, the Penguins found a way to meet the test and proved they are the bravest and the best. My hope is that “Fortune will continue to favor the Brave.” If it does, the Penguins will continue their quest for a second consecutive Stanley Cup!

Courage doesn’t always roar.
Nor does victory always soar.
Valor knows the tang of fear.
But finds the will to persevere.

In any game or any round
The tide can turn, and waves may pound.
At such times the team that’s best
Finds a way to meet each test.

In the face of adverse play
The valiant always think and say
Though we bend, we will not break.
In the end, our luck we’ll make!

When fury rages on the ice
The bravest do not think twice.
They face up to the game’s demands
And take their fate into their hands.

Officials' calls affect the play.
But breaks do not carry the day.
It’s in the clutch of desperate times
That character shows, and bravery shines!