6.22.2016

The Sage Offers the Dire Solution


it is addressed thusly:

A thought.
it reads:
Those who wish to live, live
There is no more direction to give
Whether they pass through death
Or pain, or darkest shade
They do not hold their breath
But exhale for air is made
And cling not to death.

Oh! Where have the children gone
Rows of houses stretching on--
Snout-houses! But why build a wall
When there is none to keep
To keep safe from the elements all
Furious that make the women weep
Oh, Why then build a wall?

The dead don't need to reproduce
Redundant remain the gun and noose
What life have they themselves to live
When pain and strife they cannot face--
What life have they themselves to give
A child -- a pilgrim seeking grace?
But those who wish to live, live.

6.17.2016

Bridge Song


it is addressed thusly:

 A song.
it reads:
Beneath the bridge, all is thunder
All is rain and halfway night
We who travel, must travel under
And feel the traffic-thunder might;
Those who dwell, and dwelling under
A bridge for day, a bridge for night
Live a storm, of dry and thunder
Live an evening, out of sight
When God speaks, is it in thunder
As when Paul had lost his sight
Heaven bows, and we are under
Under sound and piercing light;
Elijah crouches, and ducking under
From fire and shaking out of sight
Was then the voice of God in thunder
Or in a whisper -- still and slight?

6.13.2016

Fifty's Lottery


it is addressed thusly:

An imprecation.
it reads:
They led them into temptation
And delivered them not from evil
To drink deep of condemnation
And having thus drunk be full;

Is the man worse who dies in sin
Or the man who perishes sinning
That devil, if you'd let him in
Will either way still be winning;

It happens that those whose claim
Is based on their service of us
Have become now yet all the same
To those we did once mistrust;

A sovereign is one whose rule
Is marked by the right to kill
A tyrant is a similar fool
Who by folly the tombs will fill;

Cursed is the nation that made
Men corrupt their sacred blood
And having thus done then forbade
Them raise themselves from the mud

Cursed is that head of state
Who in knowing what I have said
With purpose left open the gate
To those who would so strike them dead!

It was if having bought fifty hens
The farmer invited the fox
Leaving open the gate to their pens
While their screams he thoroughly mocks;

"The authorities, discovering his crimes
What do you suppose they would do?"
I ask, though these are the times
When 'interference' they would eschew;

But when at last all the blood
Of his victims made the lake black
They would find a place in the mud
To inter his corpse in a sack;

"Am I my brother's keeper," they ask
His neighbors, still minding their own
Who among them is fit for the task?
If they'd known him then they'd have known;

This leader, that is, all their kind
Tempted men with pleasure and purse
Led evil to them; we're resigned
That they too shall suffer this curse.
a postscript is here written:
Orlando 50 ISIS

6.10.2016

The Sage Discards the Modern Style


it is addressed thusly:

A thought.
it reads:
I've heard it said somewhere they mock
The uncarved block;
What folly! Would they, though, live to see
Man's stupidity?
To wit - does a concrete cube and a sphere
A garden appear?
They want a clean line-- fine, I'll be excused
It is just reduced;
In the simple is always seen something nascent
For those patient;
What bird might come o'that conglomerate ball
Will Atlas call?
I laugh, and I half believe what folly I tell
It is just as well;
The uncarved block comes of a single stroke
Thus I spoke!
From grinding of a thousand wheels therefore
Is simple no more.

6.08.2016

The Song of the Idol


it is addressed thusly:

An ode.
it reads:
The golden statue which King
Nebuchadnezzar set up
Had it in time learnt to sing
Or to drink from a cup?
Had it become more than full,
Though just a ventriloquist's doll?
On its own two legs stood up
With its voice, made a call?

When the horn and the symphony
And the sackput and lyre
Make report of its infamy
That sound must inspire
All to bow down, although
Less they love and more they loath
Or else be cast into the fire
But inspiration comes from both;

Power must be obeyed we know
Though obeisance is a thing
Lost to those who above, are below
Of them, we forget to sing
But not of those who drain the cup
For in truth it cannot drink nor sup;
The golden statue which King
Nebuchadnezzar set up.
a postscript is here written:
a pass-word:
history making clinton golden

6.07.2016

The Song of the Pipes


it is addressed thusly:

A song.
it reads:
The pipe-player plays his song
Merrily, as though a dream
Were this life, the short and the long
All down-going its glinting stream
We are sad, for reasons unknown
And the music it does not groan
And we know, though it may seem
That we walk in silence, alone;

I once made a pipe to sound
Every color of a concert-hall
When in it are merrily found
The musicians' company, all
On as it were, the skylark's wing
The organ - how it does sing
But the joy, the art is to call
That it is not a viol's string;

What pipe, more bright than this
Makes sounds like a human voice
It inflects as oft as it lisps
It was one of our favorite toys
A joke! A serious joke--
A laugh as much as a choke
They were fooled by one of the boys--
That they thought a man had spoke!

But so it was long before
A pretense of speech and will
The mob that bangs at your door
Are an organ of suchlike skill
It bears a torch as it walks
And words are such as it talks
It is deadly! With death it may kill
That poor soul it seemingly stalks;

Now let me tell you a tale
Of an organ of light and shade
To mimic us, it cannot fail
In this it was perfectly made
They will see it is seemingly strong
And to rule it is fit everlong;
And to know, it is always forbade
That the pipe-player plays his song.
a postscript is here written:
This is an amalgamation of several texts. The most notable is Thomas Carlyle's relation of the democratic masses as being a simulacrum of a single human voice, as though they were a great pipe that a wind happened to be passing through that made them sound like they were speaking, and if speaking, made it seem like they were thinking and together had a mind and a will.

The 'organ of light and shade' - which consists, like most of these pipe-instruments (the mob certainly loves pipe-bombs) of a series of tubes. Sometimes there is light in the tubes, and sometimes, there is shadow. And what has begun as a joke - an a-musement, of copying certain human activities, like in the case of the mob, becomes a serious instrument. We would be led to believe that the 'viol' stop on the organ is actually a string section.

And we are, as we were about the mob, required not to consider the man working the keyboard. (We may hope he is well tempered.)

6.02.2016

The Orator Announces the Age


it is addressed thusly:

An ode.
it reads:
Men above all desire to be ruled
If not by themselves, by whom?
Time and place have us fooled
Squatters in a once-fair room;
Who with measure laid its beams
Kept it dry from rains and streams
Declared its size, where it should loom
Breathed its form from noonday dreams?

Freedom is the first-fruit borne
Born of rule, when rule was well
Strong and lean, aloof of scorn
Like this house in which you dwell
Order is first, and though retooled
When it crumbles you can't be fooled--
The call must come, a goodly spell
Men above all desire to be ruled.