Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Another New Year's Eve Poem


I resolve that 
I will write 

No more poems 
Until next year. 



Kansas Dust Bowl


With the homesteaders 

Shut in, there’s a lot 
Of clothing out there tossing 
Caution to the wind— 

Still no snap, no breeze, 
No drab as can be here, 
You see if you can 

Just remember that. 




Friday, December 27, 2013

Breezy


Our granddaughter, all 
Of eleven months 

Picks up this 
Small twig, 

Puts it down as soon as 
She sees a leaf 

Fall, starts 
To crawl to where 

It would have been 
Had the wind not 

Come by to pick it up. 




Monday, December 23, 2013

A Poem Should Be (7)


Able 

In a single bound 
To leap tall 

Buildings and keep 
Its body close 

To the ground. 



Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Night Watch Dog


Too frigging cold trying 
Hard to bark 
Head off in used car lot 

Not enough juice 
In battery 
Motor on 

Last legs.



Sunday, December 15, 2013

Dry Spell


Some not so dusty 
Plodders not so wet 
Behind the ears as you 
Say you can smell the rain 
Approaching if you’d just stop 
Long enough to unclog your nostrils. 



Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Saturday, December 7, 2013

A Poem Should Be (6)


Understood internationally 

Like a Chinese fortune 
Cookie that says 

It’s all Greek to me. 




NB: Hopefully, this poem should need no gloss, but as we're dealing with languages here--and very difficult ones at that--I'd just like to add that when a Greek comes up against something written or said that he/she does not understand, the phrase used is "It's all Chinese to me."

Thursday, December 5, 2013

If It Grins, Bear It


Like a candle 
Lit gap 

Toothed, marrow-hollowed 
Pumpkin weaned of the mother 
Patch plotting dastardly deeds

Against its seed, 
Keep smiling. 



Monday, December 2, 2013

Never a Question of Black and White


“As you make your bed, so must you lie in it.” 
--Greek proverb 


Mist but snow clearly

Blanketed the world 
And we thought our thoughts clean 

White sheets covering what 
We mistakenly thought was right. 



Sunday, December 1, 2013

Poets That Dance Revived


I want to thank Annie Wyndham for her latest blog entry; I’m grateful she took the time to not only say some nice things about my poetry but also to write some of her own in the process. Annie spent some time in Northern Greece quite a few years back and she retains an avid interest in anything Greek—especially the music—so it was doubly satisfying to see her include a rare (but nothing-to-rave-about) video of a not-so-successful “whirling-dervish-of-a-poet” tripping the not-so-light fantastic to the rhythms of a classic rembetiko song! My turn to say in the language that’s still close to her heart— “Ευχαριστώ, Αννούλα, για την αγάπη σου”. 


Friday, November 29, 2013

Wannabe Junction


cross 

(road leading to/ 
away from) 

crowded interior 

where out 
side be 
comes in 

(place to be)



Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Discriminating Tastes in DC


See the unsavory pol trying to hide 
His habit of pigging out on pheasant 
Under glass instead of tripe—still 
Under the circumstances, one has to agree 
One cannot be too conservative; you see 
The down-and-out still have this nose 
For bullshit that’s downright cruel 
And can smell when someone’s stuffing 
His craw on pâté de foie gras while serving 
The chawbacons back on the farm 
Liberal helpings of hogwash and gruel. 


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Domestic Violence


chop


another 

dark 

wood 


pile 



stack 


of 

smoke 

soon 

to 

be 


dis 

appearing 


up 

the 

home 


land’s 

char 

red 


chimneys. 




Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Zeno and the Imaginary Tortoise


What fantastic distance 
He’s traveled as far as he can 

Slowly each day a little 
Farther until faltering 

He senses the dogging 
Hard-nosed Achilles hard 

On his heels and prays this time 
His imagination will not 

Contradict him by spiriting 
The opposite way. 


Saturday, November 16, 2013

Morning Glories Skirting the Homeland's Perimeter for Mom and Apple Pie


Troops aflower ascendent 
Surrounding a white- 
Washed garden 

Wall


Few descending holding purple 
Trumpets shouting 
A hollow victory 

Call. 


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Huuklyeand Cinquor on Burning Poetic Temperaments as Fuel


I do fear I keep 
Repeating myself but when 

Will the candidates poised 
For undying posthumous fame ever stop 

Feeding entries into their infernal 
Recycling machines? 


Moderator’s comments: I have no idea, Huuk, but I can venture a wild guess: As soon as a fire-breathing, flying white horse powered by an insatiable lust for the likes of hubris-driven, never-say-die flamboyant and fiery poetry hacks arrives on the scene? 


Friday, November 8, 2013

Revelatory


Sheets of lightning vault across 
A leaden sky on the dome rain 
Thunders down under the terrible 
Eye of the Pantocrator the huddled 
Faithful trampled underneath the crypt 
Remains sealed no one asks why. 






Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Calico Cat with Southern Exposure


Nothing fishy about this one, 
Asleep and curled 
Up like a furry worm 
In the warm winter 
Sunlight outside 
The fishmonger’s open door. 

Even one with a fuzzy poetic 
Imagination can guess that 
She’s dreaming of nothing fancy— 
Fish heads, bones, a special place 
In the sun, nothing more. 


Wednesday, October 23, 2013

World-weary One


When I say 
The sound of words is mesmerizing, 
Would you come to 

Hear me count to three, 
Snap my fingers, 
Make the blather go away? 



Friday, October 18, 2013

Exhibitionists on Display at Annual Mount Parnassus Poetry Competition

“Poetry is a revelation in words by means of the words.” 
—Wallace Stevens 


MC: (through a bullhorn, bucolically) 

All right, you noble riders of the purple page, kindly listen up— 
Would the next round of supplicants willing and able 
To step out of line and sacrifice everything 
Save their skins please start jockeying 
For positions to reveal themselves? 










Tuesday, October 15, 2013

For The Time Being, A Schema


Overwhelmed 
Unable to nail down just where 

You fit in, you end up 
Under the myriad 

Specks of heaven, trying 
To pinpoint 

The exact location always 
Beginning somewhere 

Out there. 



Thursday, October 10, 2013

Déjà Vu


Any time now, the alarm 
Clock that’s melting 
And running off the bed- 
Side table like candle 
Wax will go off 
Just as you reach 
Over to turn 
It off and try 
To go back 
To sleep. 




Any time now 
But not this time— 
That burnt-out 
Dream you’re stuck in 
Won’t let you go back 
To sleep again. 


Monday, October 7, 2013

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Landscape, Corporeal


At first only a hint 
Something’s gone wrong 

In the interior and that in itself 
So slight you’d never have noticed 

Save for the mounds 
Of earth the mole’s left 

Exiting the premises. 




Monday, September 30, 2013

Celestial


Fast approaching twilight, 
It seems all terrestrial 

Bodies start 
Levitating under 

The profound
Gravity of the situation. 



Friday, September 27, 2013

If Jimmy Cagney Had Been a Conceptual Poet (And Clayton Moore His Flarfist Sidekick)


“The devil you say!” but 
I bet you’d have found 
His word worth every penny, 

Like his classic Take that, you dirty copper— 
As he filled each poem full 
Of slugs, assaying the slime

Bags shrinking to a trail of silver 
Saliva while the masked man 
Plugged poor Pegasus full

Of debased mettle. 


Monday, September 23, 2013

Sixth Sense


perambulating 

in 
narrow 
lane 

night 
scents 
flowering 

out 
sleep 
walking 

again— 


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Desultory


Out thinking 

Past midnight, clouds 
Drifting, half-moon 

Looking on 
Starry-eyed 

Galaxies moving 
Light years away. 





Wednesday, September 18, 2013

A Poem Should Be (4)


Just 

As short as 
A jury’s sequestered 

Deliberations in 
An open-and-shut 

Case, just in case 
The poet’s out 

To lunch. 




Sunday, September 15, 2013

"All the Leaves Are Brown and the Sky Is Grey"


Forget Mother Nature’s signs 
Like falling leaves, a sudden dark 
Chill in the air, nights lengthening slowly 
Days dwindling down and you drawing 
A blank about everything coming your way. 

One thing’s for sure, though— 
You know you’re not dreaming when 
The snowman rounds the corner 
And Mama and Papa no longer 
Come out to play. 


Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Elation Does Have Its Bounds, Comrades


For example, you will have 
Noticed when finished 
With a fiery piece of polemic the feeling 
Of complete annihilation— 
This is a sign 

You should rid yourself of all 
Superfluous shrapnel and pull 
Yourself together in time 
For the next round 
Of resounding salutations. 



Sunday, September 8, 2013

It's About Time You Told Me So


It’s gone before 
You know it but 

Since you asked, 
I’ll tell you all 

I know and then 
Leave you 

In the lurch 
To think about it— 

Please don’t 
Stop before 

The watchman says no. 



Friday, September 6, 2013

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

A Poem Should Be (3)


Unexpected

And dawn on you
Just like that 

Early morning wild 
Smell of field 

Fennel tickling 
Your nostrils making 

You feel pickled pink. 









Sunday, September 1, 2013

Brief Lyric on the Futility of Trying to Write Like Someone Else


At first glance it sounds 
So easy, almost 

Like child’s play until 
You try a combo verbal 

Double cartwheel summer- 
Sault and watch what’s become of you 

All these years crumbling away. 




Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Wish You Were Here


Dear heart 
Beat always 
Uneasily expectant 

With whatever passes 
Before us, what 
Say we pretend 

It’s always been here. 




Saturday, August 24, 2013

Wishful Thinking, Misanthrope


Sometimes I think 

The world would have been 
A much, much better place 

Without me, so much better 
That I wish I could 

Flash back to that hard dirt floor 
Just before the midwife 

Helped mom push me through 
The darkness, stop everything and settle 

That long-overdue score I have 
With who-knows-what 

That’s killing me—surely 
I could live with that

And wish no more. 



Thursday, August 22, 2013

A Poem Should Be (2)


like a bullet 

                                                                      train crashing 

through 

                                                                      your brain. 




Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Black Sheep


You bleat some things are better off left in the dark— 
If so, why do they keep on moseying back, 
Dragging their white-washed tales behind them? 



Sunday, August 18, 2013

Cryptic


Listen up—is it the leaves falling 
Or the sound of the wind dying down 
That wants to interrupt your sleep? 




Thursday, August 15, 2013

First Quarter Lunatic on the Horizon


Good heavens! It looks like 
Another basket case— 

The man in the moon’s going 
To sink 

A hook shot hanging 
Upside down 

From the rim! 



Monday, August 12, 2013

Muse


This lovesick ravenous crone 
Impresses 
Her horny claws firmly 
In the soft mud 
Of our mind, tears 
At our bleeding 
Mushy heart, 
Snatches us away 
Like a harpy all the while 
Droning raucously sweet 
Nothings in our ear. 



Saturday, August 10, 2013

The Last Village Threnodist


Oh woe unspeakable 
That has befallen us— 

She who kept alive for years 
That ancient dying art has left us 

With no one to better 
Charon’s bitter, 

Bitter song. 





Thursday, August 8, 2013

One Last Look Back


Time running out, 
The last time 

You looked, the world was still 
As moving as you hope 

It will be the last time you look. 



Monday, August 5, 2013

Cul-de-sac


You near the end 
Of your life thinking where 
You first went wrong— 

By the time you finish, 
There’s only one signpost left 
And it’s always the right one. 



Saturday, August 3, 2013

Huuklyeand Cinquor on Poets Sounding Out Their Voice


No, no, you’re doing fine 
Mates, plumb no deeper— 

You’ll find that buoyant 
Voice you’re looking for bobbing 

Right here near the surface, not 
Sinking at the end 

Of one last desperate line. 


Moderator’s comments: Cinquor twitching like a catastomid on the end of a gaffe(sic)—this guy doesn’t know Trout Fishing in America from The Compleat Angler. Why he presumes to be such an authority on the murky current state of American poetry is anybody’s guess, but there’s a strong possibility it might have something to do with his piscine-sounding name.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

A Coronach for Niedecker


There’s a livelier shine on the dead 
Leaves of autumn than in this lair 
And many a time my bonny 

Lorine had seen it there.


Monday, July 22, 2013

Pathetic Fallacy at Ground Zero


Aspiring leaves spiraling 

Soon to be fallen, 
Look out if you will 

On a sky without bottom. 



Friday, July 19, 2013

Huuklyeand Cinquor on Satiated Corpuses



[…the poet’s] entire body promises to satisfy our every whim and fancy
while we wait for his creative juices to start flowing once that first course arrives.*


You say

This fare is a bookworm’s
Unforgettable delight
Easily digested, my friend—

If so, why then

At the end the taste
Of gritty grubs ruminating
On tips of tumescent tongues?

*Blurb by one Randall Cann Standall on back cover of the Complete Poetical Works of X.S. Wasserbildj-Vandersluis, publisher unspecified.

Moderator’s comments: I don’t know about you guys but I’ve just about had my fill of Cinquor’s tasteless and tiresome efforts. The next time he sends me something like this, I’m going to return it to him with the following instructions (in block letters) on the envelope:  DROP DEAD, WRITE LATER.



 

Monday, July 15, 2013

Evenfall (2)


new moon 

a thin slice, old 
orange-red 

wrinkled sky cut 
deeper than skin 

deep. 



Thursday, July 11, 2013

Metamorphosis, Hombre, As in Cicada








Si, still under
Neath

Only a shell
Of it

Self, nada.





(right click on image to open new window)

Monday, July 8, 2013

A Sentence As Curious As My Ten-Month-Old Granddaughter's Look


I have no way of knowing 
But it seems every time 
You look to touch my face, 
Your little body’s trying 
Hard to flesh out what 
I hope you remember well after 
This bag of bones has gone its way. 



Saturday, July 6, 2013

Crestfallen


no matter how sapped

still the solitary 
pine holds

its breath hoping 
for a fair wind

to take that breath away. 



Thursday, July 4, 2013

KO'd


Big shot lightweight, that dark empty

Corner you thought you’d never 
Box yourself into, now riddled 

With cobwebs spangled 
With shooting

Stars. 



Monday, July 1, 2013

Tormented Soul


Some days you get up wanting 
So much to give all the love you have 
To the first person you meet 
Who tells you have a good day; 
Most other times you just wish 
Every last one of them would go away. 



Friday, June 28, 2013

Myopic Gem Merchant on Brink of Bankruptcy


Oh, mensch! How you thought
You weighed everything laid out
Before you with a mean grocer’s eye—

No more! 

Now stranded you see nothing
Precious here, not even priceless lapis
Lazuli blue lapping fabled pebbled shore. 




Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Alone, Listening to What the Waves Have to Say


Sitting here in this inlet 
Secluded, not believing what 

You hear, you could almost 
Forget what brought you here. 


Monday, June 24, 2013

Saloon Sharp Shooters, Raymond, Washington, circa 1950


Now that one last dude has shot 
His wad of nickels into the belly of the beast 
And cleared out just before closing time, in comes 
That upstairs Greek immigrant tenement urchin who starts 
Biting the dust under the row of abandoned pinball machines. 

He knows if he hangs in there and keeps 
A sharp eye out for any strays, the understanding 
Irish lady of the saloon will once again look 
The other way and let him pocket 
One more buffalo head or two, surely 

A good day’s killing for the likes 
Of the both of them. 



Friday, June 21, 2013

Who Else Out There Thought Facebook Was Only Going to Be a Passing Phase?


Friends, say you posted 

The full moon is like a poem 
That moves you— 

Could you wait around a month for it 
To become marble so you could feel 

Moved enough to like it again? 



Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Bodies of Summer


Onto the parched flanks of the sprawling 
Olive grove opposite, the midday sun throws 
An inkling of what passes for shade 
Under each canopy of blasted limbs. 

(Though under the cover of the veranda, 
You still dare not move for the heat.) 

Slowly stretching their legs, 
The crazed thrumming incessant 
Cicadas will soon burst full-blown 
Through the skin of your teeth. 



Sunday, June 16, 2013

Evenfall


blue 

mist rising 
from blue 

mountain 
hollows 

darkening 
blue- 

black 
swallows 

sky 



Thursday, June 13, 2013

Spreading Paronomasia Being a Conceit


Paranoia strikes deep— 

For what it’s worth, 
Think hard when you find

The world splayed out 
At your feat. 






Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Elementary Subterfuge, My Dear


Out of sight, out of mind? 
Possibly, maybe even perhaps 

But just in case you forgot 
If you chance to look back, 

What you see is what you’ve got, 
No getting round that. 




Sunday, June 9, 2013

Collateral Damage


This child will not stoop to listen 
To droning cold-blooded explanations 
As to why war exists and why 
There must be winners and losers— 

All this child wants is to hear 
The smallest heart beat. 



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