Wednesday, May 15, 2019

A Heroic Stroke

This is a quest to bring back poetry.
To bring it back from dens of hoarding dragons−
Those dragons of forsaken memory−,
Remembering folk from the elixir flagons.
So what if I’m a poor excuse for hero?
Or poet? All the fun is in the journey.
Mayhap will be occasion makes the hero,
Or else opinion and the dragons burn me;
I see few others willing to adventure
And fewer still with sense of what’s been stolen−
The singing muses in dark dragons’ denture−,
So I will have to do. Here thumps my colon:
   The throbbing ictus surges with a buzz.
   A hero is as deeds of hero does.

Thursday, May 2, 2019


My boat has four beige sails; the sun they block
From bursting in and feeling much at home.
They won’t invite even the sharp-eyed hawk
To look in, less yet men whose feet do roam.
My boat has four beige sails, and on a sea
Of battered concrete it will freely soar,
Though standing still it is and shall still be
Until that blazes rain or men do war.
My boat has four beige sails, and when unfurled
They blow inwardly, warbling songs so subtle
That set my mind to sailing all the world,
Unminding busy men that outside scuttle.
   My boat has four beige sails, but me for crew,
   And rooted so, it sails just when I do.

Thursday, April 25, 2019

How Do I Love Me?

How do I love me? Let me list the ways.
I love me not in looking at the mirror
And seeing all the imperfections gaze
Accusing back my ugliness much clearer.
I love me not in losing days in idle
Leisure and vagary, vacant and lazy.
I love me not freely, as one unbridled.
I love me not purely, with pleasure crazy.
I love me not in passionate pursuit
Of egotistic care or pious trope.
Since I’m not eating grass yet by the root
I love me thus: for me, there’s always hope
   For me. Christ, grant me grace likewise to labor:
   As one unfinished let me love my neighbor.

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Awe Mumbles

A starless night, abysmal lightlessness,
A sailing sea of sunless, seamless nothing,
A shoreless, strandless space of nothingness,
Astounding, sole, and silent. Still of nothing
Something comes: sound! From dark, oneiric gloom
Thrums on and on the deep resounding hum
Pronouncing forth from the eternal womb
One syllable profound, prolonging: Om!
Flashes of light, red, green, and blue, the word
Blooms into Buddha. Being heard the message,
His eyes, the first, the second, and the third
Open. I’m falling in th’omphalic passage
   Into my pate. Silence. Still through all things
   The rebound of the womb on mumly sings.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

The Whip

As a wild beast that roams about with no
Direction, there and here roving on instinct
Gendered in genes so genitors ago,
Akin to all the members of its kin, linked
Each as to act the species, master zagging
And zigging at its paws, master thus made
Mastered by beast−just so the tongue, words wagging
Presumed freely, as in wild escapade,
Constrained, thoughts mastered, spontaneity
The speech of species’ tongue, is wiled and willed
About by form of informality.
   Taming the tongue with words your thoughts to name
   Frees thought from to the common tongue being tame.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

On Plato and Poetry

Plato avows that poetry is a sham;
a mirror of a mirror, twice removed
from Truth. Of course, if you believe, like him,
reality is really that realm of Ideas,
And poetry represents this world of gross
material, then what can it seem to you
But counterfeit of counterfeit of Truth?
Yet Aristotle tells us poetry is
the mash of history and philosophy:
the universal lumped into the concrete.
If that is so, why poetry has no choice
but lie, and in so doing tell the truth.
So Plato plays the Socrates, and Ion,
Glaucon, Protagoras, Crito, Meno,
servants, slaves, kings, Athenians and Greeks
and foreign menlying to us, because
the fact is they are not themselves but Plato,
Plato who knows full well his dialogues
are plays, his characters are parts, the actors
are his reader's minds, and knows that he
can show the truth by telling lies. You see,
when Socrates expelled the poets from
his city, he did so in poetry,
and he himself was Plato's poem
he was inviting us to view the truth
behind his lie, and see that poetry,
like some old man who tells some kid
a made-up fable to instruct, who could
be you, or me, or Socrates, does lie
in story, but it leaves instruction for
the taking. So does Plato, never saying
what is it that he means or where he stands,
to show that since the universal in
concreteness lives and by concreteness is
perceived, and poetry never aims
at being true in the concrete, it's free
from truth to show the truth by saying false:
the truth is that in fiction lies the truth.

Thursday, June 22, 2017


Time has come to stop and go. To stop
still waiting for the time to come, and go
and come to time myself. Climb to the top
of the hill, having arrived there on, you know,
my own, for as the saying goes, the hill
does not respond even to that prophet's word
why would it then attend to mine? The will
that doesn't move will win, and that unheard
willcan do nothing but consent. So this
is me going the distance, watching far
in the horizon as the mountain bliss
draws closer, closer drawing where we are.
            Though time is ever moving and unmoved,
            By going to it comes, that's how it's moved.