The Poet Considers The State Of Poetry

it is addressed thusly:
A riddle.
it reads:
I wrote today a thing
And I had declared it a poem
And as a poet, so it must be
To nothing else I cling; And if I were to cling
Unto my debts, what I owe then
Is precious things for free
What then might I bring?


My Heart Is Not My Own

it is addressed thusly:
An ode.
it reads:
There is a freedom found in knowing you,
Although I err recall your love unspoken,
And love you keep in knowing something true,
That this my bond is also still unbroken.

Though mind obscure the paths in faith you take,
And though my muses occlude my surety failed,
The strangest thing to me does now awake!
A word, a ring, a thing we've now availed.

This cord of three strands is the metaphor,
For o'er the world our homeland's now the same
Through mood or mask we share a common door
Our hall unkempt has borne the only name.

Never will you know nor I my own;
And yet somehow we are soon fully known.


Haggai and Hagee

it is addressed thusly:
'Unless you too repent, you will likewise perish.'
it reads:
Who knows, maybe all of the
Crazy wannabe prophets are right;
But other things, mindful for me
Their words will not lengthen my night
Their words are airy and light;
I only find one cause for business
A temple must be built, we could say
Their hermeneutic endless
It doesn't shorten my day
If we thought about it clear
If God judged iniquities fair
Since the end is already here
There's a narrow box there
And after, boundless night.
a postscript is here written:
a pass-word:
hagee israel


Our F8

it is addressed thusly:
A vision.

it reads:
"A billion likes
Is the best possible way
To describe the internet."

It is also quite convenient
Almost, shall we say
An example of parsimony
An epitome thereof
As if I was not exaggerating enough:

They are building
Exactly such a thing you see
A giant map.

In my days of idleness
I discovered my favorite way to pass the time
Was to stare at the pictures
They call maps
Of the top of the land.

The lisping cherub
He looks like my third cousin
(We hail from Albion.)

He sits telling all of us
His girlfriend is in medical school
And whose isn't these days
If you were spawned
In the vast suburbs.

He like the rest of our comrades
Shares that moral passion for one thing

But I for one am glad
(If you may pardon my giddiness)
That the screens alone
And not what is behind them
Are transparent.

And the hope is of course
Not that when I visit CNN I will see
The other side (it's a bedroom community)

No; Such a convenience would be
Positively democratic
In the real sense of the word
We let the glass wall remain opaque
On my side.

Nevertheless the reality of things is
Which was since the first wedding
Known to be a veil.

But this one-sided curtain
Wasn't that the story of
The sorceror, the wizard wannabe
Who lived in the city of green
On the path of gold?

Those who do not understand
Who were not here when we first built this
Will not see the magic trick.

No; they will be part of the new
Friendlier, safer and wiser web
The book of 'open graphs'
The new play of masks
Of faces set in time by light.

And the apostle sayeth:
Ye have many likes
But few loves.

a postscript is here written:
a pass-word:

f eight live 2010


Old Books

it is addressed thusly:
An ode.

it reads:
The terrible and true inner world is so great
The passages that wind 'tween love and hate
The pearls all lie where others have searched
Offside the boat the treasures all lurched;

They combed it all clean and mapped it all out
But the maps that they've made are just all about
The notions of political expediency
A bit more for you, if there's quite more for me!

And really we've all used quite the same words
And really we all move with all the same verbs
But none of it's similar quite a bit beyond that
What is a guide that makes more for a mat?

We must assure you now that we've made the right choice
We must be certain the past has no voice
And if it does it's like wind about rocks
'Black and white' and old as dead clocks.

Let me remind you of 'historicity'
And how artifice and wit had yet come to be
(At least not yet in any meaningful way)
Until about 1933 in May!

But the words all stand with their shadows in silence
Waiting and breathing with aboriginal violence
Till at last the cast of blithering stops
We think we may hear four sets of hoof-clops;

It is but the sound of what we should know
The lines mark the paths of where we should go
But before you deliver me one of those looks
I'll just go back and read more old books.



it is addressed thusly:
A fragment.

it reads:
The loud wind wakes me
Driving between the gaps
Of the cataracts

The silver night glows
Through the blinds, a fairy fire
Of moonlight on snow

Drifting still, the flecks
Frost the world, make paths valleys
And shrubs mountain-tops

The cold glue my frock
I have not become cold and
Yet I am not warm.

This is the earth's dream
It ends with a wedding feast
Crystal and pure white.



it is addressed thusly:
A fragment.

it reads:
Cool crisp inviting
Of wet swept gutter falling
now underfoot, leaves

Above, final gold
A crown to a year like wool
Damp air, clouds scud'ling

This taste of smoke means
Hearths are lit somewhere unseen
A new elder time

I breathe chill, retire
Inward, and see before me
Through glass: gold, wine, rose.

Night, coming with lamps
Lit and ever deep'ning gold
to brown soon, falling.



it is addressed thusly:
A fragment.

it reads:
A bright noon passes
The sky is always lighter
Than a photograph

A shade never seemed
Like protection, but this hot
Blue zenith shimmers

Cold drinks (not for long)
Make my teeth sting and sinus
Ache with pleasing cool

How is this not King
Of bees and dry grass rust'ling
Cold lake and hot sky?

August proud never
Ends, clouds come, I walk in cool
Afternoon with God.



it is addressed thusly:
A fragment.

it reads:
I find myself where
Blossoms bright; green light and fair
Warm light beginning.

Dappled shadows pass
The surface of my eyelids
Shall I rise or not?

This odor; new rain on young
Waking seedling plants.

Because this time is
Like every time before it,
An eternal youth.

My fingernails catch
Soil bits reaching and I am
Adam in paradise.



it is addressed thusly:
A fragment.

it reads:
The eloquence and poetry
Of this gay bright pagentry
Of the faces of the skies
Thousand tongues each for it vies

A week of times is seen to pass
Quite above this face of glass
Beyond the moon, beyond the sun
Scale the eighth, return to one.

Here all-lit below we see
From facing sky and fencing sea
The dry land, the ground of earth
The place of toil, of passing worth.

Ignorant of the market-week
Of man's works and double-speak
These tongues around are silent struck
Mouths sit closed, clamped, stuck.

What is this dull, all brilliant thing
Unconquered country, redoubted king?
These are the times each man must know
By places the man now knows below.

Four is a number for worlds inscribed
And four is the way it is described
Dry and wet or light and dark*
Tongues be still, and ears hark
Now the seasons, their place we mark.

a postscript is here written:
*Traditionally the four seasons are described as two sets of two characteristics; dry or wet, and warm or cold. In extreme climates, it could be said that one of the two of these characteristics dominates; on the poles the warm/cold (light/dark) is the determining factor, and at the equator it is the wet/dry.


The Jester

it is addressed thusly:
Let the just man rebuke me in mercy.

it reads:
Of my own do tell it me
If there is that harms
To conceal but for these times
Is no impropriety; It is no impropriety
Plowshare instead of arms;
But wise and trenchant rhymes
May now reveal reality.


Love is Not Safe

it is addressed thusly:
An ode.

it reads:
An art of war is art
A loss is just a loss
No words there are to impel
The inviolable heart; And this inviolable heart
Has its princely cost;
Your trackless thorny temple
Your last dramatic part.


The Sage Consults His Prism

it is addressed thusly:
An 'ism' is an attack of the mind on the heart.

it reads:
No way is up, here
Every direction heads outwards
But to where? To the end
Of this mortal dream?

A thousand values twinkle
Their false gold - bright pyrite
Each beckons the hand to grasp
The eye to behold;

But where to put them? A man
must put them in himself; his mind
pressed in with them: stones
In a riverbed;

How long then, as do sieves
Before the mind becomes heavy
And holds no more; the vine
Bears and sags;

Stakes are employed and a wall
And a trellis, but the fruit
Is fetid, the winter comes
And it wilts.

Cast off and uncarved, a block
Unused and unusable, at last
Free of the elemental powers
And ignorant.

Affix my head to my shoulders,
It is not heavy any longer,
But full of breath and dew
An unbloomed bud.


Freedom's End

it is addressed thusly:
Friend simply means, 'free man'.

it reads:
To the man whose merely free
Freedom finds him searching for
Besting the conspiracy
Enemies he will count them: four.

The first is menacing, the state
The one that he will truly serve
He reveals within suspicious hate
Loyalty that cannot swerve

The second; market's greed for goods
The goods which come from his own hands
These he claims are naught but hoods
But buys daily his own bands

The third the church whose solemn life
Wrecks his fool festivity
Now instead of wisdom's wife
He will grieve unconsciously

The last is neighbor, thief of time
We must be independent from!
But weakness grows from crime to crime
And time now freely go and come.

Freedom from is what or how:
Of Caeser, Mammon, Pope and Friend?
Severed he is weakened now
And will not choose his servant's end.