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280 Dog Years


The Holy Grail Press is dedicated to promoting work that standard publishers... you know, those with standards, might be reluctant to publish, which pretty much leaves poetry.  And let's face it:  No one publishes poetry.  So in the end, we’re left with a lot of free time.



Word of the Every So Often  

May 27, 2022

wonk:  (noun)  often used derogatorily, a person who takes a particularly specialized interest in the minute details of a field of study, especially with politics.  You want to know about the influence of Russian immigrants on the passage of the infrastructure bill?  Then just ask Bill, he's our resident wonk.


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Tuesday, August 31, 2021

The All Apocalypse Network

True story. 


Many people thought the world was going to end in 1666 – the whole "666" thing.  In 1666, all of London caught fire and burned to the ground, from September 2 through September 6.  It was probably just a coincidence.  Fortunately, only three people died, give or take.  But you gotta think about those three people.  Not only were they about to die an absolutely horrible death, but they thought the world was ending, to boot.  You gotta imagine they were doing a lot of praying. 


"And... time's up!  Let's look at the big board to see how well Larry's last minute prayers are going to stack up...  and there it is!  A 28% forgiveness.  That's one of the highest we've had all week.  Way to go, Larry!  But... unfortunately, you're still at 56%, and you needed at least a 59.5 to qualify for Purgatory.  But we still have a lot nice prizes for you.  Here's Morton to tell you what you get for just being on our show."


"That's right, Bob.  For being on our show, Larry gets an all expense paid trip to Hell.  There, he will enjoy an eternity of pain and suffering.  Hell, the very best in damnation.  Way to go, Larry!  After this break we have a boatload of nuns that just fell into a canyon in South America.  That should be fun!  Be sure to stay tuned.  This is "Judgment Day" on the All Apocalypse Network.

8:37 am pdt 

Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Why I Hate My Job:  Interview #1221:  Poet

You know the poem:  Here I sit / all broken hearted, / come to shit / but only farted.  Yeah.  That was mine.  I wrote it.  I mean... what?  You think it was always there?  Somebody had to write it.  The single most recognized poem in the entire world, and I wrote it.  But nobody knows who I am.  I’m... My name is Vincent Nelson.  So now you know.

Editor’s Note:  In keeping with our policy not to use names, the above name has been changed.

12:43 pm pdt 

Thursday, August 19, 2021

9:27 am pdt 

Monday, August 9, 2021


She offered to share her chocolates with me
as we sat in the frayed webbing of her rusted lawn chairs
on one of the last warm evenings
of what had been an unseasonably cool summer.
I didn't know which piece to take
because I was afraid of getting one I wouldn't like,
but having to eat it anyway,
just to be nice.
Not that it mattered,
because all the good pieces were already gone.
She had broken them open
and left the nasty ones
with their gooey pink insides
lying scattered about the box.
So I politely declined.

10:59 am pdt 

Thursday, August 5, 2021


The Dog Days of Summer

It's so hot you can fry a dog on the pavement... not that you'd want to.  However, that's not why they call it the "Dog Days."  The brightest star in the sky (if you don't count our sun, and why would you?) is Sirius, which is also known as the "Dog Star" because it is the most noticeable part of the constellation Canis Major, the Big Dog.  And, as we all know, Canis Major is Orion's hunting dog. (What are the Dog Days of Summer)


The heliacal rising of Sirius (meaning it rises in the morning) is visible in the Northern Hemisphere from July 3 to August 11, more or less, depending on where you actually are. (What are the Dog Days of Summer)  So, really, we could just as easily call it the Dog Days of July instead of the Dog Days of August... or whenever.  The further south you are, the earlier in the year Sirius rises... like in December.  (Little)  But here in the Northern Hemisphere, where everybody I know lives, Sirius rises in what happens to be the hottest part of the summer, at least, it was before global warming.  Why does it get so hot in the summer?  Well, that's easy!  It's a combination of our sun and Sirius.  No, I'm not being serious, but all those folks in the olden days believed that.  Of course, they believed all sorts of things that aren't true, but we can't blame them for trying.  (What are the Dog Days of Summer)


The Egyptians, not necessarily believing the nonsense about a distant star heating up our planet, associated Sirius with the Inundation, the annual flooding of the Nile, which brought life to that part of the world.  In fact, their new year began on the first full moon following the rise of Sirius.  On the other hand, the Greeks and the Romans, who notoriously believed in a lot of nonsense, saw the rise of Sirius as an ill omen, bringing famine and pestilence, and if anybody could do pestilence well, it was those guys.  Indeed, "Sirius" means "scorching" in Greek.  But then, disease rates really are higher in the summer. (What are the Dog Days of Summer)


If you want to locate Sirius, you'll first have to go outside at night.  It just won't work otherwise.  Then look up.  Next, find Orion's Belt – those three bright stars that almost everybody can identify, and then look down and to your left for the brightest star you can see.  Yup.  That's Sirius.  (Dog Days )  If you want somebody to blame for the heat, that's where to send your complaints. 


But, hey!  There's hope if you're patient enough, because of a little thingy called the Trepidation of the Equinoxes.  The earth, as it is wont to do, wobbles on its axis, so over time the stars shift in the night sky.  In just a scant 10,000 years Sirius will rise in the middle of winter.  Maybe then we'll call it the Dog Days of Winter, where it's so cold that even your dog wants to stay inside. (Dog Days)



Work Cited


"Dog Days."  18 July 2018.  Wikipedia.  02 Aug. 2018.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dog_days


Little, Becky.  "Why Do We Call Them the 'Dog Days' of Summer?"  10 July 2015.  National Geographic.  02 Aug. 2018  https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2015/07/150710-dog-days-summer-sirius-star-astronomy-weather-language/


"What are the Dog Days of Summer?"  2018.  The Old Farmer's Almanac.  02 Aug. 2018  https://www.almanac.com/content/what-are-dog-days-summer


11:20 am pdt 

Monday, August 2, 2021


Now let me get this straight... We're going to have sex, and then you're going to eat me... but we are going to have sex. 

11:13 am pdt 

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