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689 messages

Mudcat Poetry Corner

12 Feb 03 - 10:07 AM (#888525)
Subject: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I would like to offer you all a place to put your poetry, whether it is rigorously structured, , freeform, shmaltzy rhyme, haiku, irreverent doggerel, earth-moving Yeatsian profundity or cummingsoid rockets. Mostly I invite you to add something to the beauty in the world. here.

If time permits, I may get together with our Gaelic Goddess and start us an online book of it along the lines of the Mudcat Song Book of which she is the honored Keeper...

Please do not include epics. Paeans to television shows are discouraged.

Guests are welcome to contribute -- being members of the honorable community of Anons who have added so much to our rich poetic legacy.

Write well, write often, and add some beauty.



12 Feb 03 - 10:23 AM (#888538)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Rainer Maria Rilke offered this to a young aspiring poet who was asking for his approval:

You ask whether your verses are an y good. You ask me. You have asked others before this. You send them to magazines. You compare them with other poems, and you are upset when certain editors reject your work. Now (since you have said you want my advice) I beg you to stop doing that sort of thing. You are looking outside, and that is what you should most avoid right now. No one can advise or help you - no one. There is only one thing you should do. Go into yourself. Find out the reason that commands you to write; see whether it has spread its roots into the very depths of your heart; confess to yourself whether you would have to die if you were forbidden to write. This most of all: ask yourself in the most silent hour of your night: must I write? Dig into yourself for a deep answer. And if this answer rings out in assent, if you meet this solemn question with a strong, simple "I must," then build your life in accordance with this necessity; your while life, even into its humblest and most indifferent hour, must become a sign and witness to this impulse.

I include it here for encouragement.


12 Feb 03 - 10:27 AM (#888545)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Let me add that rules are simple: good efforts are invited and encouraged; no criticism of a destructive sort is permitted, veiled or not; anyone may include anything within the general guidelines.


12 Feb 03 - 10:30 AM (#888550)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Mark Clark

I know this isn't a musical thread
And I'm adding nothing to what others have said
But Rilke's advice to the insecure poet
Is true, too, of music... if you din't know it.

      - Mark

12 Feb 03 - 10:40 AM (#888559)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: *daylia*

Amos this is a wonderful idea! Thank you!

Inspired by such brave 'Catters as Thomas the Rhymer, I've had a lot of fun over the last few weeks posting some of my thoughts in rhyme. I really love doing it! I'm now duly inspired to create a poem that will stand by itself, without the context of a thread to have it 'make sense' (if that made any sense!) So now yer all duly warned ... it just might appear here!

Creative Mudcatters RULE!!!


12 Feb 03 - 10:43 AM (#888562)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Chip2447

One composed for my Niece O'Malley at the request of my sister in law...

Chip Martin
(C) 2002 H.A. Martin Jr.

Birthday candles and countless stars
Twinkling in the night.
Pennies in the well
And coins in the fountain.
Dandelion seeds drifting with your breath,
Shooting stars and secrets
Told only to your diary and
A few trusted stuffed friends.
My wish for you,
Is that all your wishes come true
And you can say, I Believe.

12 Feb 03 - 10:47 AM (#888569)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,dark and cold

its dark
and cold
but its darker
and colder
my mind

12 Feb 03 - 10:50 AM (#888575)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: harpgirl

Don't Leave your Ropes out in the Rain!

The high rise window washer sways
Amidst the birds, on sunny days!
A speed break locks around his cable
And this keeps vittles on his table
I watch him Sqeegeeing the fixtures
with vinegar and ammonia mixtures
Hanging, seemingly suspended,
by fragile ropes and lines untended!
I marvel at thee window washer!
Within my office, low and posher!
Perhaps I'd offer reassurance,
If I didn't sell insurance!

inspired by a window washer friend in Arkansas who plays fiddle....hg

12 Feb 03 - 11:55 AM (#888629)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca


        In the night
        that has lasted years
        the ships we are
        The ripples you make
        shift and change my life
        create adjustments
        corrections of course
        having rocked the boat
        they pass
        At dawn
        on the empty sea
        I watch the sun

12 Feb 03 - 12:33 PM (#888670)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing


They are hidden
In vaults, real,
And, those within the minds
And memories of folks:
Tattered scraps.
If I am lucky,
Whole clothes,
Direct lineage
To my ancestors.
Making me a skilled
Observer, interviewer,
A digger of roots.

© K.LaFrance

12 Feb 03 - 01:17 PM (#888702)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

WOW!! Dang, you guys, I am shivered!! This is terrific! Thanks!


12 Feb 03 - 01:25 PM (#888706)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek


My monsters hide
In the closet
And crouch under my bed
Mostly they thrive in my cranium
And crawl around my head
They come dancing out at night
When there is no light
They feel so right
Scurrying and prancing
In front of me
And only I can see them
And Only I can see...

12 Feb 03 - 02:21 PM (#888749)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Interesting range of perspectives herein, I'll say that! :>)


12 Feb 03 - 03:02 PM (#888779)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Foe

Hey! There's a stick

And a puddle mix

Of mud and water

I know I ought'a

Keep on my way

To work today

They tell me I'm

Too old to play

But who can pass

The chance to see

The look of mud balls

Droppin' from that maple tree

I could climb up high

And wait for Suzy Mae

To come on by

And then I'd show her

How I really love her

By droppin' down these mud balls

From the sky high up above her

But no, I must get to work

Suzy Mae's a long past memory

And they would say I play the simple jerk

A grown man with a suit and tie

Sitting high with mud balls

In a childhood maple tree


copyright 1999 by Forrest Meader

12 Feb 03 - 04:06 PM (#888843)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Aw, Forrest, I love it!


12 Feb 03 - 05:09 PM (#888894)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Only the pleasures you can freely have will arrive;

Those you despise will drive

Harsh injustice into your heart and mind,

And make it logical.

Then, shun life and retire,

Or court it for sure madness,

Until your own kind turn from you, despairing that

You have forgotten all healing.

12 Feb 03 - 05:23 PM (#888906)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bardford

Excellent thread! But then there's this,er,doggerel,written when I was 8 or 9, but remembered for just this opportunity for critical international recognition:

We have a cat called Nugget
My mom won't let you bug it.


12 Feb 03 - 07:17 PM (#888991)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Within and Without

Fire is in the universe,
And all the bodies dance it love.
Each spark has understood, each tendril of flame,
The universe is its combustion wholly!
This is why fires sings "Wow!" all day long.

Here by the morning camp,
Coffee-smoke twines higher
The still pining branches stay polite,
But the breakfast fire laughs to the sun,
Saying "One! We are one!"

Fire sings all the day,
Knowing the instant is the answer,
Since fire Is.
Fire is
the Universe.

12 Feb 03 - 07:27 PM (#888998)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Forrest! I love that; excellent for reading aloud! Thanks for sharing.

Great thread and talents, folks!


12 Feb 03 - 07:28 PM (#889000)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek


Where does one's mind go...
Where does it wander,
I wonder...
Does it go on vacation?
Change its location?
Does ir abort and abondon?
Does it take a hike?
Go cross country by bike?
How about an exotic cruise.
I have to be careful
Not to lose
My mind.
I may not remember
where I put it.

12 Feb 03 - 10:50 PM (#889153)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Montreal in Autumn

To flames, the ashes weigh nothing.
When you are among them, they do not matter.
That they were old timbers, spoke to owls,
Is only a dream to tell to water.

To ice. the summer water is faint memory.
Once you have surrendered and formed up,
The picture is lost of what you knew.
Freedom is the cruelest dream,
Of ashes or of ice.

Rhythm comes easy to the wild .
It is their answer in time
To ashes and frozen spaces.
Under maple leaves where their wild dreams are playing
They can show you dreams in Time's own frosted face.

Days are a matter of
Time and fire
Hours of summer waters yield to old ice
Leaves to ashes turn for prediction
Freedom is the completion of
All desire,
And it is in the very air.
Freedom is in the very air,
The completion of all desire.

Montreal, October 2000

12 Feb 03 - 11:08 PM (#889161)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


They know, they know. They know because
Confusion pains the heart and dulls seeing
Not to know is heresy and being
Outcast in their own home universe of laws,
Immeasurably sinful

Therefore they need, and find
A way to know; and undo pain.
This brings reward, this brings catastrophe.

The catastrophe is avoidable
But not the reward. This makes things
More difficult. How they need, would die to have
A better way of knowing.

San Diego
August 16, 1994

Ok, enough already!! Your turn!!


12 Feb 03 - 11:36 PM (#889180)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

Hot Vents

Oily vapors,
Belch from twisted stacks
And Tolkienian cracks of doom, black smokers spew
Into the relentless, cold, bathyal void.
A shimmering mirage of sulphurous waves,
Teeming with luminescent bodies
Darting to an alien rhythm of life,
Hidden from the
Nature that we

Copyright©1999 S. Grieve

12 Feb 03 - 11:41 PM (#889186)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Wow, Metchosin.

Just wow, is all.


12 Feb 03 - 11:42 PM (#889187)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Two Haiku One

Each petal that falls
Adds grace, no
Matter where.
Wise gardner!


Some stars
Give more light, some
More beauty.
Am I responsible?

12 Feb 03 - 11:48 PM (#889191)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

I feel I'm in distinguished company, there is some really, really good stuff on this thread.

13 Feb 03 - 12:01 AM (#889199)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peg

nice idea for a thread Amos! and lots of very good work in here so far!

This poem won the Morris Cup (best poem in English about a Cornish subject) in the Gorseth Kernow in Cornwall this past year...

Boscawen-Un, 30 October, Midnight

This black hood , pierced by stars, hangs about our heads,
a warm drapery, pressing down like stones
Upon the breasts of unrepentant witches.
The hallowed dew darkens our clothes,
torn as we plundered the gorse hedgerow,
branches tittering, alive with nightbirds,
(it blooms gold, but is russet red now, humbled in its descent to winter).
We flung ourselves upon this windblown heath,
attracted by dolmens, by demons,
by the mad epiphanies of a drunken dowser,
into this court of kings and ghosts and dancing maidens,
outlaws of heaven, time-keepers of earth.
Our hearts are become stone, throbbing, laughing,
older than books, wordless, hewn by barley sheaves,
Blessed, kissed, by cusp-born acolytes.
In daylight, we would be as bluebottles crushed upon a rough sundial,
consumed in powdered heat,
then lapped up by some lumpen, hairy, splitfoot throwback.
but now,
we are time itself, we gaze into deathless depths,
and see the pointed horns of bulls,
the gleaming eyes of archers,
the stag and the serpent,
blood of the warrior, wine of the mother,
the dust of stars that swirls down paths of ancestor glory,
cosmic ley lines linking planets to moons, summer to autumn,
heart joined to heart, and lip to lip,
confounding childhood lessons of the sky.

copyright 2002 by
Peg Aloi

13 Feb 03 - 12:13 AM (#889203)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Rustic Rebel

I just posted this yesterday on Jed's thread but I will put it here also,

                         Looking Out
I sit holed up in this little cabin in the woods.
I watch the snow come down, and the sun reflect it's shine
       Looks so divine.         Fairies glitter spread atop of the world.
I watch through the window at the little chick-a-dees
       Scampering off erratically
The blue-jays squawk and do their dancing in the trees
       Holding their heads high and gracefully
The wolves cry is the lonely cry of winter
The wind seems to sigh at the wolves capture
         For the deer fall silently as the snow.
I don't know if it's the wind that tells the owl    Or the owl to the wind
          Of all the wise and wonders of the land
Occasionally a pair of leaves, captured by a breeze,
          Dance along spirited and playfull - Yet restless for their journeys end
      Back to where they came.
A fox chase rabbit game is also played out-
          To the foxes delight he wins the game
A high squeal emits from the rabbit   Could it be a squeal of delight also?
            For it no longer has to play the game.
And with the long winter will come an occasional thaw
             The icicles repeat themselves, throughout this time
The sun will do a dance through them
             With reflections of spring to come.
I watch intently the life of winter And wait patiently for the sun to dance
               Through the final icicle.


13 Feb 03 - 12:37 AM (#889207)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin


Just outside of my window is raging
The confusion and chaos of war.
The legs and the corpses are piling
The abdomens drained of their gore.

The bodies are sere and discarded
The lives of a hundred or more
Legs tattered and matted and shattered
No sign of their life from before.

And up in the corner I see her
The cause of this plunder and gloom
From out of the shadows she ventures
The spider is tending her loom.

Copyright©1999 S. Grieve

13 Feb 03 - 12:47 AM (#889212)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

And from my dear husband with a headcold and fond memories of chilhood.....

I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as a tree

13 Feb 03 - 12:50 AM (#889215)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Rustic Rebel

This is what I adore about Mudcat. There is so much talent and inspiration here. Thank-you Amos.
Amos, Mark, Chip, Dark and Cold,Harpgirl, Micca, Katlaughing, SandyCreek, Foe, Bardford(gotta love those short ones!),Metchosin and Peg(Congradulations Peg!) I say Bravo to you all!
I will add another...

                                                                                           Nov.14, 2002      

          I 've built myself a drum today using all the finest of materials.
Fine wood and leather, feathers adorn it, dangles and beads surround the base.
What a drum to beat on. I beat on it now with all full self.
Mingle with abandon the steady rhythms that I pound.

          Forces un-beknown to me, heed my call as I drum.
I am within bounderies of infinite wisdom.
I fear the calling of the angels.
I fear the calling of the gods.
I fear the whispers of the wind as they blow through my brain, and I drum.

          With the child-like extremes I endure, I drum
          With the child like extremes I endure, I drum.

          Visions of the past are abound and I call for assurance of my existance.
I rapidly ascend through the outer reaches of my grasp.
I falter only for a moment upon reaching the destination I have achieved. That is the drumming.

         That is the drumming of my soul as I soar.
          That is the drumming of my soul as I soar.

          I built this drum with passion and inspiration and hope.
Adorned with majestic aspiration and evolving dreams of love and peace.
Futuristic passions of things I have not forgotten from past existances.

            With drumming I am free to unlimitless desire
             With drumming I am free to unlimitless desire.

With drumming I am free , my drum does not limit me .

Peace. Rustic

13 Feb 03 - 01:02 AM (#889220)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Dance of the Hearts

Ah, my dear, I turn the lights out
The candles reach for the overhead
Shadows dance across the room
Flickering upon the walls
Your hand is tender and soft
As I caress it with my lips
So hold me close to your breast
Let your heart beat against mine
As I place my mouth upon your lips
Let them dance together in time
The stereo is gently crooning
An old Scottish song of love
You hair gently drifts down your face
I wipe it back from your soft brown eyes
My lips press against your throat
And the dance of hearts begins
So hold me close to your breast
Let your heart beat against mine
As I place my mouth upon your lips
Let them dance together in time


13 Feb 03 - 05:33 AM (#889294)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: hacksawbob

The little Haiku
   Opens window to the soul
       Freeing mind

13 Feb 03 - 07:18 AM (#889343)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Great stuff is a great site to "store" your writings and ramblings AND to share your thoughts with lots of other folks. Amos, are you familiar with this website?...


Does the darkness ever lift
or does it forever shift
from my left to my right
it makes for a very long night
there is never enough light to see
sometimes I am very much afraid of me

13 Feb 03 - 08:31 AM (#889382)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek


He cupped
her memories
in withered hands
this old man of clay
in an old house
of gray
shuttered darkness
and the sad starkness
of one faded blue dress
fraught with yellowed flowers
in a closet
with no door
and Sunday's shoes
resting on the floor.

13 Feb 03 - 09:14 AM (#889410)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Wow!! This is amazing!! All so beautiful!!

I love thast drum of yours, RR!!

Sandy, I hadn't seen that site before. I'll have to go explore it tonight.


13 Feb 03 - 09:22 AM (#889419)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Foe


Bluebird puffs himself

Against a new found rival

Window reflection

I plant the pea seed

In a row with his brothers

Miracle appears

A tiny whirlwind

Twists on the blacktop driveway

Dead leave come alive

13 Feb 03 - 09:56 AM (#889448)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

By and By Children

By and by children
don't you know
forever you can't cry?
That someday you must grow
   by and by
into lives of paint
that smooth their lines
   with aged strokes.
The sun will hide
the starless night
   and the stars sleep
   all the time.

By and by children
   don't you know?
You'll grow up to die.

13 Feb 03 - 10:08 AM (#889463)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MMario

Not mine - but my nephews: (I want to adapt this and put it to music someday)

Small Gods and Moon

The day wanes, and the Sun creeps ever lower in the sky, his light fading. Shadows fall across the wood-land, echoes of the dark soon to come. They await a reply from the sinking globe above them, but none will come, for his time on this Earth is now over, and his sister's reign begins. She, the queen of night, slowly ascends to her rightful place, watching her brother plummet beneath the horizon.

His is a graceful descent, majestic. None can deny that the realm of day is his. But it is a band of twinkling stars and the pallid Moon that must now supply light in the darkness. She is a gem in the heavens; a pearl within the great oyster mother that is the night. Her shining is sure to delight the denizens of the woods and fields and streams below her, for she is gentler than the Sun.

she beckons her courtly attendants to her side, and sends them off, sliding on Moon-beams down to the Earth below. Once there, they gather together and utter the summoning.

From deep inside the woods the answer comes.
Small gods,
fuzzy gods and furry gods, all
scampering and scurrying
to answer the call of their great white mistress,
rushing to pay homage to her
they all kneel, and bow down.

The pale lady looks down at them as a tender lover looks upon the object of her affection. Slight breezes blow through the crowd. All they hear is a soft murmur as the Moon's blessing is given.

The creatures below, care-takers of the wood
and water, immortal and eternal ones,
small gods,
join paws and wings to celebrate all things good
about the night and about the lady Moon.

The small gods go
to collect nuts
and berries for
the feast
to come.

Small gods with wings
search for twigs and sticks
to build
a fire
with. They all return

with what they sought after and the dance begins.
Whirling and twirling each other about,
the animals of the forest are alive
as they had never dreamed they could possibly
be. Lovely
wild prancing
until it
seems that they
must collapse
into a
deep slumber.
And so they do. They sleep,
and nocturnal nature
cannot manage to keep
their eyes open, or cure
the strange drowsiness that possesses them, body and soul.
They lie in the clearing where the fire still smolders, their whole
divinity spent on the dance.
The darkness is seeped in silence.

The Moon laughs, and reaches out to stroke the heads of her fur
covered subjects. They shiver at her touch, as light as it is, though their sleep is heavy, they start to stir. There is one last thing to be done.

When the night is over, it is understood
that gifts are given to the Moon by barons,
small gods
that are greater than the rest. The lady should
receive them, and in return, she grants a boon

to the giver of the best gift. The gods move
forward, and one of them is chosen. She
grants him his heart's desire, a glimpse of her face.
The small gods return to the woods,
return to their charges, now that
the celebration is over.
Night is finished.
The day will come.

Now it is her turn to fall to Earth. Now she must defer to her brother, the Sun, as he comes into sight. He shines with a powerful glow, brighter than she, so high, so mighty, the entire world is his to command.

Birds sing.
They are
small gods
no more.
are now just
animals, not
powers of the night.
The darkness brings
fancy and the

13 Feb 03 - 11:16 AM (#889524)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peg

wow MMario that is fantastic!

13 Feb 03 - 11:32 AM (#889535)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MMario

*beaming w/ Uncle-ish pride*

yeah - I know.
He insist that the line breaks are part of the poetry. Myself, I'm not so sure.

13 Feb 03 - 11:46 AM (#889545)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Oustanding, MMario! WOW! And, Peg, congrats!!

I am waiting for a tune for this one; even had a publisher tell me it sounded like a ballad:

Waves of Sorrow

Oh, doest thou know then,
Of my heart, O weary man of sea?
It bends and breaks unto the ground
My love belongs to thee.

For I, a simple woman be,
Yet, the sea she is your bride.
In sorrow now I wander
Midst the bracken and the ruin.
Lost thou I have, alas, now then
The sea take me to my doom.

Then gather'd he, at midnight's rest,
Saw her ghostly pale divide
Twixt mournful sea and shore
When he came in on the weary tide.
With despair, his heart..he lost it
Out on the brine that night,
And knew not another, ever more;
No mortal woman's delight.

His maiden, bride, and mistress,
La Mer, called him out sad, but brave,
And there he dwelt on the Waves of Sorrow,
'Til he joined True Love in her grave.

© K. LaFrance

13 Feb 03 - 12:14 PM (#889565)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

I can post this now that I know my dad is home and okay. He had a health crisis two nights back and we weren't sure he was going to make it. As I sat waiting for news, this came to me:

Do you lie
Dying in your bed?
Or, are you better,
Living, awake, and well?

Am I an orphan yet?
Don't hasten that Moment, please.

13 Feb 03 - 01:34 PM (#889615)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Rustic Rebel

Howl At the Moon

The night was upon us, We had nothing to do but wait for the rising moon.
We knew it was to be full and bright
on this night,
we were going to howl at the moon.

Found the spot, we all agreed, would be perfect for our quest.
Layed out the blankets in the grass, for which to lay upon and rest.

Our bottle full of moonshine, for which to help us all along.
The howling would commence, after drinking, dance and song.

It all was getting clearer, as the evening did go by,
the moon would do a number on us, for there was not a cloud in the sky.

Suddenly the moon began to rise above the trees,
The moonshine in our stomachs, already had us on our knees!

"Let the howling begin!" I heard someone yell.
Our low, guttural howls, soon did swell.

The moon rose higher and so did we, as our dance began at first subdued.
The higher the moon rose, our dance became lewd.

Clothes flew through the evening light.Shadowed visions of delight.
We danced in a circle, holding hands so tight, howling at the moon with all our might.

Every emotion inside, did come forth that eve.
We became the moon, that night, I believe.

Between the moonshine and the moonshine, my soul did fly,
as we howled at the moon, way up in the sky.

Before we knew it, the dawn was between the moon and the ground.
We were alright with that, because our voices couldn't be found!

We sent them away with the passing loon.
That night we did, howl at the moon.

Peace. Rustic (2000)

13 Feb 03 - 11:59 PM (#890058)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Man, what a wild wide range of beuaty there is to behold here! I am really impressed, no kidding.


14 Feb 03 - 01:25 AM (#890083)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Love brings out the fine grain

In the rough carpenter?s gentlest print.

Really, this is so ?

The ancient arts are signs

Of a deep-sea heart greening. Thus,

The fisherman endows the sea in a green love

And the builder, home his craft to discover

Finds no friend but a lover in green seas calling.

No hand who will not find the fine grain in his heart, should we allow

To bring any harm to trees; for fear

He will live dried days,

Of the green
heart bereft.


Hand on plane, the fine carpenter

River-tongues among cold stone,

And fires indifference to the core of gold

Sparking lights in mirrors. Grain

And the sea?s love calling

Bring him forward over the boundless bitter candle

Of time, to home.



14 Feb 03 - 01:38 AM (#890088)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin


Autumn's prelude
Arrives with the subtle change of afternoon light
Embracing an erratic dance
Of delicate wings.
From decaying logs beneath the duff,
Amber termites scramble
To begin their tremulous flight.
First one,
Then three,
Then finally a bustling host,
Wings newly flexed and fragile, fluttering into light.
They flit
To have their frail wings rent
Like Isadora scarves
On the spun wheels
Of awaiting fat chocolate spiders
With cream banded legs.
Or crash land,
Hurriedly discarding their wings, as if ashamed
They are not innately
Creatures of the air,
Then scurry,
By twos
For hidden places
Where a novice troupe will make an aerial debut
Next summer's end.

Copyright©2000 S. Grieve

14 Feb 03 - 01:42 AM (#890090)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

I love this incredible range of perspectives.

14 Feb 03 - 03:16 AM (#890113)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Chip2447

I composed this haiku, one afternoon when I watched a Monarch butterfly fly down and land on the picnic table I was sitting at. The butterfly's final flight, for it worked its wings once or twice and then died.

The tortured scream of
the butterfly, echos through
all eternitiy.

Rather on the bleak side, but that was the mood I was in.


14 Feb 03 - 09:07 AM (#890249)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek


We seem hellbent on dying
rushing headlong to death
as if our last breath
will truly be our last.
We drag our ragged past
into the future
marching steadfast and sure.
We quickstep in time
with no rhythm or rhyme
and delight in this decsent
into our abysmal abyss.

14 Feb 03 - 09:44 AM (#890265)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Beautiful, Sandy!! Beautiful, Chip!


14 Feb 03 - 10:59 AM (#890324)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Foe

Once a composer named Bach
Said he'd heard some wonderous tach
In the future I'm told
There'll be music that rolls
And also sometimes will rach

All those who would mess with the Sioux
Should find someting better to dioux
Or like George and his friends
You'll soon meet a sad end
Toodle-dioux, Toodle-dioux, toodle-dioux (to the tune of Taps)

14 Feb 03 - 11:42 AM (#890352)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: *daylia*


War is for neanderthals
who brandish bloody clubs;
and roaring insane battle calls
smash kinder hearts to pulp.

War's roots lie deep in avarice
in hatred and in lies
and suck the bile of ignorance
that their deathly fruit survive.

O hither come the blokes of war
See how they foam and rage!
They're howling just outside my door
"Join the tyrants of this age!"

And though the wisest of the wise
teach war is obsolete;
Still we march toward that vile dawn
on shameless, guilty feet.


PS - sorry about the negativism folks. :-(

This was inspired by reading a couple of the Mudcat war threads (too early in the morning?) today.

14 Feb 03 - 01:38 PM (#890438)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: *daylia*

"And though the wisest of the wise
teach war is obsolete;
Still we march toward that vile dawn
on shameless, guilty

14 Feb 03 - 01:51 PM (#890442)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Wuzzle

Autumn mist is love enfolding golden rays of wonderlight
leaves are kisses gently falling fading into night
winters cold a rugged beauty blood red berries mistletoe
ice cold tears of love unfailing falling into snow

springs fresh day brings hope and freedom
daffodils and tulips gay
rejoice today sweet life has risen turning night to day
summer life with love indwelling far above the clouds of time
smile the gentle smile of peace upon our lives come shine

14 Feb 03 - 01:57 PM (#890447)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: *daylia*

Oops, hit the wrong clicky ... just needed to brighten up that last line a little ... Cuz it's Valentine's Day, and


14 Feb 03 - 02:08 PM (#890453)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Rustic Rebel

Blue Generation

It all just popped into my head
everything I've said
and done.
My existence doesn't revolve around yours.

Yours is from a planet of somewhere
unknown to most.

My belly crawls
Flesh creeps
Eyes weep.

Blue generation

General feelings of anticipation
New creation

Mother wails, in comparison
Compassion left.

Walls abound
My eyes well with tears
Body shivers with fears
Look into all the mirrors
Reflection disappears

With the blink of an eye
you appear once again
and we start over.

Peace. Rustic (2000)
ps. Great works from everyone!

14 Feb 03 - 03:19 PM (#890511)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: limejuice

It was so cold that night
but there was no wind
and it felt like the air would never move again
the porch light forgot to turn on
as I creaked open the door
and padded across the grey carpet
when I finally reached the bathroom
the light was too brittle
and it smashed against the faucet as it fell
but it kept on falling
I didn't feel the water on my hands
and I'd swear it never touched my face
although I saw my cheeks were wet in the wavering mirror
I wanted to see the stars
but I thought if I opened the window for sure I'd fall out
so I stood there
and clutched the curtains tightly closed

just in case

14 Feb 03 - 03:28 PM (#890519)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: limejuice

*laughing* And a little ditty inspired by the charms of our BC ferries...

O, the grimy blue carpet crunches under your feet
and the ceiling-beams rattle to an unsteady beat
the cheap vinyl chairs peel off of your back
as you struggle for comfort (of which there's a lack)

The lights up above are a skull piercing glare
so you vacate your seat 'cause your nerves are rubbed bare
the scent from the head just adds to your mood
as you stumble down hallways a' looking for food

The galley is crowded with tables galore
and ketchup packs squished all over the floor
The quality vittles availible here
would make the most hardened of men shed a tear

I'm sure some more verses will come to me the next time I have occasion to ride that majestic craft we call a ferryboat!



14 Feb 03 - 04:11 PM (#890544)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

Wow, these are all great, and such a rich feast. Amos, way to go. You have always had it and you always will. I haven't written much lately so I'm going to post an old one. It is not from my kindest or most enlightened time, but for some reason I have always considered it my favorite poem-child.

Bonnie's Solution

If my clothes were real silk, bright, and new, and rich,
Then I'd be well.

If I re-did my kitchen, muted, modern, subtle,
Then I'd be well.

If I tidied my room, hung black and white photographs --
Tastefully chosen, artistically framed --
Then I'd be fine, I'd really be fine.

If I lined up brand-name bottles in the bathroom
And folded fat, clean towels in neat rows,
Scrubbed everything, fixed the screens,
Then I could stride out and take command.

If I got expensive haircuts and sexy little shoes,
Then all the world would love me
And I'd love me, too.

Then my heart would stop leaking out of my gluey ribs.
Then my slithery bones would re-gel into immobility
(Icy toughness, like hers)

And no one could hurt me anymore. I'd be as crimson
and as memorable as a staple through your thumb.

I'd be smarter than a speeding bullet.
(But not by very much.)

-Rebecca Jessup
(c) 1995

14 Feb 03 - 06:17 PM (#890628)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Aw, Deda, that's a puredee winner. I love it. :>)


14 Feb 03 - 07:03 PM (#890651)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca


                     The non-existent trap
                     on the non-victim,
                     makes solid
                     bars and walls,
                     dungeons in the air,
                     from fears.

                     We talk,
                     defuse the bomb,
                     and show the hinges
                     where the
                     once hung.

                     But now
                     searching my eyes for the inevitable
                     for flight.

                     And I,
                     closing the doors,
                     draw in,
                     actions spontaneous no more,
                     for the beat
                     of your

Copyright Micca

14 Feb 03 - 09:49 PM (#890730)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Loverly work, Micc!!


14 Feb 03 - 09:59 PM (#890738)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Long Problem                


The long problem, the old problem,

Is not seen in the streets of day.

They have buried, buried, buried it

Put it down, under long hours of passion and of clay.

They have suppressed it, they have nullified

The old problem, the old problem,

So that the wheel may turn and the names be called

They have hidden the old problem away.

Money streets are walled with suits

And the hot sweets calling

That drip syrup on the fingers of men

Twined in the crisp leaf-fall?s scream

And the long problem echoes when it is allowed

In the hour of the dream. Balls

And the cold-climaxed dance deny while flying

Through the long problem?s halls.

Burials fade, and the long problem returns

A deal of well-suited clay cries in it

And the old wheel?s fire burns to its tune

And the crisped leaf crying.


Answers are in communication:

The faces will flow

And the plenum reveal

And the denial be known

And the far northern call be heard

And the leaves transform, each

To its own kind of bird

As the wheel runs back

And the burial is undone

And the unspoken, known,

Advises the becoming.

All streets will as rivers

Advance to the delta call

?Auroroa! Aurora! Aurora!? tells

All there is, while the suits are falling.

All balls are cancelled by the flux,

The plenum explains, and the warm river-climax

Echoes the answers when the long problem falls.

Now is the beginning. Tell Edna. She, too, will answer.

Answers are in communication,

And the long problem falling

14 Feb 03 - 10:34 PM (#890761)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

The following was written for and performed for the June, 2001 Art Garden held at the Depot Theater in Garrison, New York. The Art Garden is a night of theater organized like a literary magazine, where writers independantly create pieces on a particular theme, and then perform them before a live audience.

The theme for this particular "issue" was Beaches.


We came from the sea before our days were numbered.
And before our eyes knew light from dark,
when time was kept with the heartbeats of our mothers,
we took our breath through gills.

We hold the sea within us,
like a pebble under the tongue --
a secret charm of protection.
Our passions: blood and tears,
are as briny as the sea.
The ebb and flow of tides within
follow the gravity of the heart.

And at the bone-cold shore,
where dream and duty meet,
the coastline is never smooth,
but, echoing the curl of each crashing wave,
twists upon itself toward fractal infinity.

After we have forgotten the numbering of our days,
after the longshore drift of memory
has swept away our care,
these crashing waves will turn our bones to sand
for a cuttlefish to hide in.

14 Feb 03 - 11:32 PM (#890780)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Made me grin, ya did, CU!! Thanks!!


14 Feb 03 - 11:37 PM (#890786)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Neighmond

I love to hear the multitudes
the people speak and sing
Oh! To hear ten thousand toungues
And hear the voices ring.

15 Feb 03 - 01:52 AM (#890847)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: harpgirl

and some more of hg's doggerel...


Hephastus, so the story goes
Once found himself a wry cuckhold
And to avenge his wife's wild passion
Tricked her love in a clever fashion.
While he was tending the smithy fire,
Mars was fanning his wife's desire.
As they lay entwined on the smithy's bed
They failed to see the net o'erhead.
It was rigged to fall as the story goes
when the flames of passion curled their toes!

Hephastus saved his reputation
And, passion is indeed a conflagration!

15 Feb 03 - 04:06 AM (#890867)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: darkriver

Ukiah haikU

One hundred degrees
by noon already:
too damn hot to write.

15 Feb 03 - 08:05 AM (#890918)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Night Flight '67

The dreams come back
when the stars take flight.
Old friends in old places
come around at night
and we ride our dark horses
through the Valley of the Loon
laying waste to Eden
and darking the moon.
Again we are dauntless,
heroes to a man.
We are the last few living,
the last ones to stand.
As the morning hides from darkness
and the images slip from sight,
I lose sight of their faces
as the dawning brings the light.
We are saddened and wizened
as around and again it goes.
We are just old men
wearing young men's clothes.

Dark horses refer to helicopter gunships.
The area is near Khe Sanh, Republic of South Vietnam.

15 Feb 03 - 08:52 AM (#890934)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Right between the eyeballs, man. Well crafted, too.


15 Feb 03 - 01:36 PM (#891035)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

(Written in the late 1980s.)

The only divinity I can sense or find
Comes when I regain my mind
After losing it completely.
Human help has failed. Gently, discreetly,
God sends some hopeful message with the wind.

15 Feb 03 - 02:15 PM (#891058)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

In this poem I took some liberties with the legends about Merlin, whose end came because he fell in love with a powerful sorceress, in some versions the Lady of the Lake, and in order to escape his attentions she locked him, or tricked him into locking himself, in either a tower or a menhir, one of the mysterious standing stones that are found all around the coast of Brittany. Long before, Merlin had trained Morgana le Fay, a protegee/student magician(ess?) who "goes bad" and becomes King Arthur's magic foe. (Also, Merlin's experience of time was reported in some myths to be "backwards" -- i.e., the future was his past.)
(Dear God, is anyone going to really bother reading all this??? Oh well, here goes)

I. Merlin Considers Mad Morgana

His magic hands could heal her, they both knew it.
But the magic was withheld. She was too mad, mad with need,
Too sick for his taste. He hadn't meant to trigger
So deep and wild a need;
A transfiguring need, that stripped all loveliness,
Muddied all beauty, like some obscene graffitti of the soul.
He took aim with his eyes, coolly so that no light
Might blur his view of that fevered, foaming soul,
That madness which his hands could heal.

But even his hands cannot touch without feeling,
And who could know what that madwoman's skin
Might unleash in him?

Mad though she was, she understood
The wizard's loneliness, his isolation,
The problems of living backwards, and among men.
Once in some other time he had spoken to her often
Of these and many other things, and they had laughed.
He was so fond of her then! She had shown promise and wit,
And her dark eyes were deep to her heart, spilling the heart and hope's
Gratitude, merriment, all at his feet, all in his trust.
But now -- she was writhing mad, and there were risks.
Risks to these primitive men, and his especial ward.
And his own risk. Was she the foretold foe?
That other time was packed away now and he
Must hold his power all alone, must bear
The icy seclusion of vicarious rule
Among this childlike tribe.

She was of his race, perhaps. Perhaps some kin.
But she had bad blood, or bad stars.
He clasped his magic hands behind.
He shook his bearded head.

II. Afterword

"Was Merlin ever slain? And did he die?"
No. Somewhere stands a rock with a quick eye.
He loved to desperation, Merlin did.
The lady had no choice, no way to rid
Herself of his obsequious attention
But to lock him into magical detention.
He's alive and buried by his own spell
In some stone in Brittany. Who can tell?
So many rocks stand sentry on that rock-infested coast.
Any silent one might be his crypt, his silent host.

15 Feb 03 - 11:17 PM (#891366)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Bravo, sis!


16 Feb 03 - 07:52 PM (#891887)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca

This kinda grew outa trying to make sense out of this click here

The quiet descends
The flowers start to wither
In red brick furnace
The ashes slowly cool

The hymn is sung
The eulogy delivered
mourners head home
while Tired children mewl

Pile into cars
Lifts offered and accepted
Then rush hour roads
To go and Wake the dead

Then time to go
And scatter back to places
To far and near
With all that's left unsaid

Hugs and handshakes
After a drink together
bright hollow smiles
As people leave at last

It don't seem much
To tuck away a brother
And close the book
on fifty years of past

copyright Micca

16 Feb 03 - 09:48 PM (#891944)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Bravely done, Micca.



16 Feb 03 - 09:55 PM (#891946)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

This is a piece that grew out of a number of converging forces. It is not autobiographical, certainly, but it reflects part of collective persona, culturally, if briefly:

Western Civilization

On the patio, with wine, she told me that he'd called
"Your brother called," she said, "while you were out."
We'd talked about our calendars, and revenues
And who should paint the halls,
And I said, "What about?"
"He wanted to communicate with you."

"How did he sound?" "Desperate," she replied.
"He sounded as though something loved was gone,
Like someone who learns an awful lie is true."
"Perhaps his favorite turtle died."
We laughed – it was an old, familiar tone,
"He wanted to communicate with you."

Reflecting on the color for the halls,
A contract at the office still in doubt,
A business rumour – hoped to be untrue -
I thought of him a while, and then
Said "Tell me if he calls again."

San Diego
February, 2003

(c)2003 A. H. Jessup

17 Feb 03 - 04:25 PM (#892383)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peg

Deda: cool poem about Merlin and Morgana! Very incisive.
I include here a long triptych first published in Obsidian Magazine and then on, and this same myth makes an appearance herein...

Avalloch and The Tree Fairy: a triptych

Part One (The Fairy Ailinn)

I romp towards Broceliande
a slippery undine
shrieking silent paeans of wood lust
my face smeared with pitch
thighs shining with vetiver, tacky with blood

Where are you?

Cloaked in mist, I huddle beneath pine boughs
breakfasting on fallen acorns.
I wait, and sing.

I have lost you to the dawn
running backwards to daylight
to your city
to timepieces and rough weather
to loved ones and gold coin and sour beer.

How could you have become lost among trees?
You, the huntsman who's plundered every acre of Bretagne?
How came you to the faery realm?
How, if not trapped by magic?

You ran me through
Herne to my Sadhbh
antlers singed in the spitting fire
hot meat juices dripping from your beard
to stain my breast the colour of venison.

You semen swirls in my belly.
My teeth are imprinted on your spine.

I wait.
You won't be leaving.

I could have been a mermaid
could have dragged you over rocks
knotted your fingers in my silver hair
offered you to any or all of my sisters
their combs in hand, cold hips floating.
I could have filled your lungs with salt and pearls
stopped your legs
kept you with me.

But I am alone in this.
I love you. I want you here.

An ageless and nubile forest nymph
I tempt you with peaty scotch and promises
luring you with apples and high sweet music
into the green and breathing temple of myself.

In Celidon Wood
nine dryads play at calixte twigs, the old game
dividing the contents of a buckskin pouch
squealing with delight as each receives a bauble in turn:
chunks of flint, silver coins, golden needles,
stubs of tallow candles, black feathers,
oat biscuits, a flask half-filled with honey mead,
a scarlet silk ribbon,
a tine of stag horn carved with Ogham,
a knife blade sticky with sap.

Part Two (The Huntsman Avalloch)

No you never twisted my arm.
I wanted to stay with you.
Twenty years I gave, petrified
in the screaming orchard, choked with ivy and mushrooms.
Twenty years recalling the taste of your mouth,
while you seduced a dozen lovers
and I watched.

The fisherman, called to your side from his bleak rock village,
The selkie trapper, his silver eyelashes frozen to your lips,
The woodsman, his hatchets rusted in your juices,
Even the idiot farmer, with his gifts of barley and turnips.
I saw it all, enslaved as I was among apple trees
their clumsy caresses bludgeoning my stopped eyes,
even as they bruised your greenfairy skin.

But you are not as fragile as you look.

For they, too, have been imprisoned in the oaks,
in the hazels, the hawthorns,
put away, endless forest denizens rooted in the soil of Broceliande,
soil trod by Merlin, another hapless fool,
frozen in transfigured time by a conniving fey doxy
was that your work, too?

LATER (Ailinn Speaks):
What do you mean, you're sorry?
Oh my love, I had such hopes for you, for us.
But in the end, you disappointed--
too angry, too possessive, too too too monogamous.
It's better this way, don't you see?

Patience, Avalloch: our flesh may yet be one.
Think not on the others,
they will wither in six seasons' time.
You are the one I loved enough to stay the flow of your blood.
Your body is yet warm as milk, sturdy as horn.
For now, remain in the grove,
be my shelter and my food,
and remember those nights we loved,
your antlered crown tangled in my hair,
while a thousand colours woke and danced about us
and we named them all forest green.

Part Three (Merlin Speaks)

It is all one.
Frozen I have been, but powerless, no.
Magic has flowered in me, a thorned, odorous canopy
of roses, balm, and rubine foxgloves.
I could crush you like beetles, like dried petals,
and scatter you from the cliffs of Orkney.
I could send you to the heinous bogs of Lindow,
there to drown forever in her peaty stench,
embracing my kinsman there, a late harvest offering,
the stuck-up golden boy, an ungrateful druid
if ever there was one.

Perhaps his withered lips might rouse in you some occult passion,
stir your breast to sugared musings, or move you to pretty tears,
such as I could never wrest from you.
For I do long to see you wed, my dear,
as, in my dotage, I drive roots deep and deep
into river-wet rock beds.
I am become stone, my robes a melted, igneous drapery,
my eyes mere chunks of amber.
I have been in the unhewn dolmen,
and I have been in stag horns, and sea salt,
and my hard, gnarled roots have plumbed soils
richer and moister far than yours, my darling.

Stuck? Petrified? Mudlogged?
I am in my element, you might say.
A tree in the earth, a stick in a hole,
my arms forever raised,
my head forever bent, in benediction.
I forgive you.
Your time is almost done, you know.
And when at last red fire rents the air
and all save the Eternal Ones must die,
your blood and sinew and snot and bones
will all be dust, greying in the black wind.

But I will rise from this Last Burning,
a golden and phantasmagoric birdling,
something between a merlin and an ibis,
unfettered, unfrozen, undead
And I will remember you.

Wait for me.

LATER: (The Goddess Speaks)
Alas, my mountains, laid waste,
are sloppy with glistering guano.
My waters, poisoned, lie thick, unmoving, stinking.
The forests, the grasses, all picked clean of berries and milk.
Tittering, chirping, screeching, the very air is an insult to me.

Who would have thought, in my autumn years,
I'd have been ousted, raped, undone,
not by men, but by a myth?

17 Feb 03 - 04:51 PM (#892414)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

Wow, again to Amos, and Wow to Peg -- what an opus! Fascinating - very rich. Thanks for posting it.

17 Feb 03 - 08:08 PM (#892572)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,

Ha! Such talent.

Warms my heart to see the rythms of the mudcats in the muddy waters
of this day. Here be one from the nib.

Little bits of whimsy,
Worlds beyond my eye,
Twisted thoughts,
In twisted words,
That haunt me till I die.

Long remembered moments,
Splinters of my life,
They flee the vault,
Of never say,
My fingers weave the strife.

I never meant to poet,
Condense myself to verse,
Expose my soul,
To sharp critique,
A most perplexing curse.

17 Feb 03 - 09:48 PM (#892627)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Peg..thanks for the wonderful piece on King Authur...Sam

17 Feb 03 - 10:17 PM (#892645)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos




18 Feb 03 - 11:53 AM (#892760)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Amos, thanks for this great online poetry magazine.


I wish that I could be
the hawk that sits
high up in the tree
I wish that I could glimpse
the world outside my town
Is it flat or
is it round
How far does it go
Will I ever know
if the Earth sits still
or is it slung
all around
and will I be flung
to the ground
or perhaps whirled free
to fly real high
so that I can see
the world outside my town
without sitting
high up in the tree

18 Feb 03 - 01:07 PM (#892826)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

and where would we be without paying homage to Robert Service, of course, there are those who do not consider him a poet either......

with apologies to Robert Service.......


There are those fools who decide,
To test mettle and their pride
And hike the temperate rainforests western rim,
Where pouring rain and muck,               
Is the measure of your pluck
And the backpack, of your vigor and your vim.

Over hill, through mired bog,
Over greased and slippery log,
Over tangled roots that trip you on your way,
Just when the slogging's getting tough
And you think you've had enough,
The map reveals there's still another K.

In the campfires smoky heat
When you're too damned tired to eat
And you wonder why you started on this quest,
Just then Pacific breakers roll
And a sunset stirs your soul,
You know by God, today you've earned your rest.

In the realm of breaching whale,
Where muting fog or blowing gale
Cloaks the Sitka spruce and cedars somber edge,
The kelp beds heave and fall
To the gull and ravens call
And the breakers thunder on a rocky ledge.

As you eat nut and raison lunch
And do the periwinkle crunch
You make up time on shelves of hardened sand.
Then there's the giant's cobblestone,
A misplaced foot could snap a bone,
Slowly pick your way and wish, for trails inland.

On the Cullites bolted rungs,
As the breath rips through your lungs,
Humbly recall, shipwrecks, in days of yore,
Where a tar, sans boot and gaiter,
From surf wracked and broken freighter,
Unaided, scaled this treacherous height before.

You'll meet a hiker who'll report
Someone's run this trail as sport,
Racers time in hours and minutes, not by day.
But the runner that's hell bent
Isn't packing your food or tent
And he missed the otter family hard at play.

For the hidden gold you seek,
As you wade the icy swollen creek
Is right there, in each footstep that you take,
It's not just the getting through,
That's the mother lode for you
It's every living, breathing, moment wide-awake.

Salal bush wind clipp'd and bent
By the western wind is rent
Into bonsai gardens of the rain and storm.
Sparkling silver sea and mist
Has constant, held and kissed
This wild topiary landscapes sculpted form.

At the Nitinat's tidal stand
Meet the tenders of this land,
Caretakers of split cedar boarded trail.
For ten thousand years or more
They have worked this windswept shore
For the bounty of the salmon and the whale.

Just when you think this part's a lark,
A Sunday stroll out in the park,
Don't dismiss those paw prints in the sand,
For the "cougar warning" on a sign
Will send a tingle down your spine
For you know who really rules this primal land.

And when the journey's through
Pachena Bay comes into view,
Remember in the elation of the day,
Sometimes success is not all luck,
Nor because of stamina and pluck,
But the spirits there, beside you, on the way.

Copyright © S.Grieve 1999

18 Feb 03 - 01:30 PM (#892842)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Paid in Full

I won me a chest full of medals
for killing ole' Charlie Cong.
Hell, it wasn't wrong.
Couldn't have been.
I was paid every month
and then once
I met a General
who slapped me on the back
and we laughed at the crack
he made about body count.
"Son, it's not the fact,
it's the amount.
We kill one,
we write down three
and between you and me
thats the way to win wars."
Government pimps...
Military whores...
Who could possible know more
than they do.

18 Feb 03 - 02:05 PM (#892870)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Mets! No need to apologise to Service! Ya done him proud, IMO. Absolutely beautiful; I was there in the reading of your eloquent imagery. Thanks,


18 Feb 03 - 02:30 PM (#892896)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek


Paid in Full

last two lines
should read-----

Who could possibly know more
than they do.

Sorry 'bout that.

18 Feb 03 - 02:48 PM (#892910)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

thank you, kat.

18 Feb 03 - 03:40 PM (#892953)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


I should thank you!


18 Feb 03 - 09:53 PM (#893246)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Dexter

Ode to a Bluebird
Good morning, little bluebird
Upon my windowsill.
I saw you in my dreams,
And now, I see you still
Dancing to and fro
Upon my window ledge,
Fresh from last night's rest
Of nesting in a hedge;
And, as I see your beauty
Against the morning fog,
I hit you with the waste can,
And feed you to my dog.

18 Feb 03 - 10:49 PM (#893273)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Very droll, Dexter.

19 Feb 03 - 10:50 AM (#893409)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Dexter

yes. thank you.


20 Feb 03 - 07:50 AM (#894167)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

Where was I
when yesterday came
when the stars
of last night
stayed out of sight
hidden behind
the only cloud
in the sky
I missed the sound
when day broke
striking back
from the dark.

20 Feb 03 - 02:46 PM (#894494)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: posterchild

Sandy Creek, your war poems are very strong. Do you have more? If you do please post them or email them to me.

Thank you, Aronelle

21 Feb 03 - 08:55 AM (#895083)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,stone


when we did our killing
we slid from sight
we left no shadow
      we hid our faces
      ten paces
      from the light

21 Feb 03 - 12:51 PM (#895256)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Thought Bazaar

We are the thought mongers. We make hard noise.
Guts rumble with unquenchable smoke – the furnace only roars.
Heads rattle with machinery, attitudes built into plastic parts,
The rattle of fast translations, too hard to love, that love destroys.
Peering through windows where we build no doors,
Fanning minds not joined to human hearts.
We have left no-one on watch in the furnace-room below.
No fires call -- the basement is adrift in blowing snow.

We are churning the chimes of the weird bazaar
As all our kind do, and have since young.
Smoke throated, voices aflame
Tongues waving at the hopeless stars
Hopes in mean messages, meanly flung
And the hard calling of names.
And, floating up from the furnace room below,
Coals scream, surrendering to snow.

21 Feb 03 - 12:57 PM (#895261)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Promises like pie crust by C Rossetti sound

The reclusive mystical genius Christina Rossetti expressed so many of her thoughts and frustrations through her poetry this delightful lyrical poem gives us perhaps some insight into the mind of this deeply religious Victorian lady who shunned close friendship prefering to live within her close-knit family unit away from the attentions of outsiders who perhaps she never entirely trusted....Heres the link to the page with the sound file..
Promises like pie crust by Christina Rossetti 1830 - 1894 (sound poem set to mus


Jim Clark

PS..Dont forget you can if you prefer listen to my sound poems at my Yahoo "sound poetry" web group (look in "files") heres that link

All rights are reserved on this sound recording/copyright/patent Jim Clark 2003

Promises like pie crust

Promise me no promises,
So will I not promise you:
Keep we both our liberties,
Never false and never true:
Let us hold the die uncast,
Free to come as free to go:
For I cannot know your past,
And of mine what can you know?

You, so warm, may once have been
Warmer towards another one:
I, so cold, may once have seen
Sunlight, once have felt the sun:
Who shall show us if it was
Thus indeed in time of old?
Fades the image from the glass,
And the fortune is not told.

If you promised, you might grieve
For lost liberty again:
If I promised, I believe
I should fret to break the chain.
Let us be the friends we were,
Nothing more but nothing less:
Many thrive on frugal fare
Who would perish of excess.

21 Feb 03 - 01:43 PM (#895300)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Rustic Rebel

Vodka makes me turn pretty red
Tequila makes me forget what I said,
Whiskey makes me wish you were dead,
I think I should smoke pot, instead!

Peace. Rustic, getting deep!

21 Feb 03 - 01:54 PM (#895316)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Schantieman

I wrote this addition to William Blake's Jerusalem many years ago. It always seemed to me (singing it) that it needed another verse, and the sentiments are a bit old-fashioned. This brings it up to date a bit.

And shall the joy be thus confined,
Cease at the bounds of England's shore?
Shall minds be closed and hearts unmoved
While mute starvation pleads for more?
This must not be, we shall fight on -
Our love extend, our greed destroy.
Then truly shall Jerusalem
The whole world o'er shout out her joy!

21 Feb 03 - 02:38 PM (#895354)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,stone

On Losing Your Friend

There is no song
for a broken heart
and no place to start
when no stone
is left to turn
and no lesson
is left to learn.
The spirit is dark when
there is no gift for giving.
We are not yet dead.
We have just quit living.

21 Feb 03 - 06:47 PM (#895526)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: EJ

Does anyone have any poetry written to honor the events of 911? I have read some great works in this thread. EJ

22 Feb 03 - 12:30 PM (#895926)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Dances in Silence

You are the dance that has no words and rises
In the spring's own flood to the wind and rain
That sweeps the silence into the noise-worn bone
And raises the teeth of hearts again.

Only there do none dance alone.
The hard breath and wild limbs' sway tell
All the story, and the soul's devises
Rising with the time of far and endless bells.

22 Feb 03 - 01:08 PM (#895964)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sandy Creek

I'll start this one.

Where were you standing
when the towers fell.
What were you doing
when the Earth hung suspended
between heaven and hell.

If you care to, jump in and add it to or change it or do whatever you like, then pass it on.

22 Feb 03 - 07:47 PM (#896204)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca

Everyone knows exactly where
They were, it's sad alas
Like older folks in a different time
First heard the news from Dallas

World events leave lasting marks
On us or so it seems
And how and when we heard the news
Is etched into our dreams

15 Apr 03 - 04:59 PM (#934192)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Plain Beauty, Too

The plain side has its own time and bend--
Not so bright, but long, long --
Which must be known to comprehend
The rainbow song.

Bright colors, alas, can be too easy; shrill
In seeming, rich in fear,
When even fire can be fooled, and Will
Will not stand near.

With effort plain, sharing the ground,
Even a dirge will show an honest face
To anyone whose name is bound
And earned in common space.

15 Apr 03 - 06:32 PM (#934274)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Uncle_DaveO

I saw a two-line joke in the Saturday Evening Post 50-some years ago. Thus a poem of sorts, and then a song. The poem is as follows:

Come all you young maidens and listen
And gain some instruction from me.
Be modest, demure, and retiring,
And chase not the bachelor so free.
Oh, do not act bold, free, and brazen;
Be modest, retiring and shy.
Men flee from the woman who chases
And the brazen young lady pass by.
But the modest girl does not chase bachelors
As doubtless you have been aware,
For the modest girl does not chase bachelors
As the bear-trap does not chase the bear!

Dave Oesterreich

15 Apr 03 - 06:35 PM (#934279)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Uncle_DaveO

The fourth-last line should be, of course:

But the modest girl does not chase bachelors    (plural)

Dave Oesterreich

15 Apr 03 - 10:56 PM (#934431)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Celtaddict

Glad to find haiku amongst folkies.

       Swirl-black Spanish lace,
       Backed by wool of oyster white:
       Winter tree and sky.

16 Apr 03 - 10:16 AM (#934716)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

To us, who travel time,
All stories have been heard before;
Head full of folk-songs.

16 Apr 03 - 02:04 PM (#934866)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

Sonnet 07/05/02        Banshee                DCLXXXVIII

It was an odd noise that I heard, this night:
Not quite a scream, but far more than a gasp,
From moonless darkness, with no stars in sight.
What is this coldness, that my insides clasp?
Why do I weaken, hearing sound so far
Only the echo reaches ear, yet mind
Is twisted from intent? How can I bar
Gate of imagination to wyrd bind?
I fall, boneless with fright, and sweat breaks out;
Bowels turn to water with despair. I weep,
To lose all. I moan, but cannot give shout
To more than whimper, nor my reason keep.
She passes, and I live! Yet dare not rise
For fear of seeing Death within her eyes.

17 Apr 03 - 01:38 AM (#935216)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Mudlark

Thanks for all submissions...not surprising that Mudcatters are good poets. Here's one of mine


The moon, squashed and misshapen
        Rises above a jumble of pickup sticks--
                Crossed contrails in the night sky.

No slim crescent this, its void a
        Future contract, its open circle
                So suggestive of possibilities, fulfillment.

Neither has it the lush ripeness
        Of the full moon, clearly at the top
                Of her game, all promises granted.

No, gravity has had it's way with
        This moon, blowsy now and bulging,
                Firm contours gone, symmetry erased.

How could it come to this, the moon
        Asks, gazing sadly into some puddle or
                Sylvan pond, in just four short days?

Like some earthly body she is shocked
        At the disparity between mirror and
                Inner eye, an unwilling shape-shifter.

She wraps herself in veils of cloud
        And climbs high into the sky, knowing
                The kindness of distance, and waits for day.

12 Jun 03 - 05:29 PM (#966572)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

I found this in my saved drafts in one of my email addresses....its a couple of years old...

Standing On the Dyke

I stand on the dyke...
Watching the river gurgle across the sunburnt stones...

I stand on the dyke...
Listening to the bees buzz in my ear...

The wind blows through my hair...
Whistling as he clambers through the trees...

The wind blows through my hair...
Dancing with the grass tickling my knees...

Swimmers dive beneath the river...
Cool water slides passed their faces...

Swimmers dive beneath the river...
Rushing downwards to meet with wet embraces...

Lovers stand on the shoreline...
Their laughter marching lightly up the bank...

Lovers stand on the shoreline...
Whispers of love spoken in their eyes...

I turn back to an empty house...
Ghosts gently peaking through the curtains...

I turn back to an empty house...
Slowly, I step through a darkened doorway, alone...

nathan tompkins 2001

13 Jun 03 - 12:01 AM (#966697)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Very evocative, Amergindarlin'....

04 Sep 03 - 02:48 PM (#1012787)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Chez La Lune

Yes, she had beauty, sure and clear
Reaching   deep in the eye, and calmly still
That sort of beauty which invites the see'r
To think of dying or retiring, all fulfilled.

Perhaps too beautiful to care,
Like some confection, bringing hard remorse
Seeming more appetite than truth
Like guileful fire, painted on a screen of force,

Or musical deception, luring hearts away
With the tones and rhythms of imagined hours,
Lying delightfully about the end of winter
Until the silence came, killing the flowers.

04 Sep 03 - 07:24 PM (#1012969)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

HAZARDS TO NAVIGATION       by kendall morse

Did I ever tell you people, about a time long years ago,
When Jackson and I left No Man's, in a fog that hung heavy and low?
From No Man's into Camden, is almost 30 miles, no radar in those days, dead reckoning all the while.
Coming across Penobscot Bay in a fog that was dungeon thick, I knew we could be run down, by tanker or a cargo ship.
We could hear the horns and whistles of those monsters all around, One could ram us in that soup and never hear a sound.
Jack was standing on the bow to get a better view, "We're surrounded Cap'n" he yelled back "What are we gonna do"?
"Throw some of them Maine potatoes, like snowballs, hard as you can, and, if one of them don't splash, I'll know it's time to turn."

We left the channel far behind, but, I couldn't find The Graves,
Our time was up, and it wasn't there, and, the Mate began to rave.
His girl was waiting on the shore, all the time we were at sea,
And the last thing in the world he wanted to do, was spend another hour with me.

He'd had enough of the sea that day, but, I just let him steam, I killed the engine and listened hard, for that buoy off our beam.
We didn't know which way to head, 'cause we didn't know where we were,
The buoy I wanted wasn't there was all I knew for sure.

Then all at once, it came to me, the smell of new mown hay,
And, a real odd sound come with it from somewhere across the bay.
In that soup we didn't know we were so close to the shore,
But, a boy was out there mowing his lawn, we could hear his engine roar!
"We're lost in the fog," I hollered, "After a week at sea, how do you get to Camden"?
He said, "My Dad takes me."
There was no help there, so,we came about to get her well off shore, then, the fog gave up, and there was The Graves, 'twas only a mile or more.
We tied her up in Camden, after a long hard jog, and we promised ourselves that never again would we sail in that kind of fog.

04 Sep 03 - 07:26 PM (#1012973)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

That was based on a true incident, but I did stretch the truth a bit.
If I can figure out how to do it, I'll submit one that was written by my 14 year old grand daughter.

04 Sep 03 - 07:30 PM (#1012976)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

Here is a poem from my 14 year old grand daughter. Her father is a misogynist rat bastard who abused her. I didn't know it until he was long gone.

The world is too close in us
Late and early
Caressing and dying we lay waste our powers
Little we see in grief that is ours
We have given our love away,
A bleeding death.
This demise that lays vulnerable to the lies
This hound that wails into the night,
And, is collected now, like bleeding flowers,
For this, for everything, we are discomforted,
It does not touch us,
But, still, we ask,
"How could you do this to me"?
I'd rather be a child, wrapped in a torn shirt
So that I, running on this broken land,
Could have glimpses to make me less forlorn
And, see myself rising from the sea
And hear the Gods blare comfort from a horn.

04 Sep 03 - 10:20 PM (#1013049)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Heavy stuff for a 14 yr old, Kendall, you've a right to be proud of her. I LOVE your to read those kinds of poems out can be so dramatic! Thanks!

04 Sep 03 - 10:40 PM (#1013060)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Your granddaughter has the real poet's genius in her -- let it be fostered!!


04 Sep 03 - 10:54 PM (#1013066)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

No doggerelists need apply

(Inspired by the currently ongoing scouring of the shires of New Hampshire for a poet laureate)

The poets of the Granite State
From top gun down to not-so-great
Are clucking like a brood of hens,
They seek a Poet Laureate.

Let's hope those folks will take up pens
Who write verse no one comprehends,
(For clarity is worse than rhyme)
And nominate themselves - or friends.

For those who grasp the paradigm,
And are in versifying prime,
Who know enigma wins the day,
This is indeed a heady time.

You'll sense those poets by their ways,
They've not quite shaken all clichés,
With sandals, flowery dress or beard,
Or strutting round in French berets.

Soon one will be e'en more revered,
Raised aloft, with fame veneered
With ancient Greek-style laurels crowned,
In shopping malls and classrooms cheered.

Will our next Laureate be found
Like Dalai Lama, unrenowned,
In humble, rural trailer park,
And academia confound?

Or will it be a hierarch,
Who has already left a mark
Within the corridors of fame,
With rhymeless verse, obscure and stark?

New Hampshire poets seek a name,
It matters not if Knight or Dame,
A hayseed or a city dwellah,
To fill the vacant throne's the aim.

Please help them find their Cinderella
That poetess or poet fellah
Think – who could be the Laureate?
Now mail that choice to Pat Frisella*.

*Pat Frisella is the President of New Hampshire Poetry Society.

05 Sep 03 - 03:48 AM (#1013172)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Barden of England

I had a tune going round in my head, and these words sort of 'popped' out. I think they work as a poem too, which isn't always so with words from songs.

WHY?   © John Barden 1999

Why worry 'bout tomorrow, when tomorrow never comes?
Why fill yourself with sorrow, when joy within you runs?
Softly, slowly, listen hard you'll find.
Deep down, in there, an inner peace of mind.
So don't be blind

Why talk of all this fighting, when it always leads to war?
So many wrongs need righting, tell me what they do that for?
Can't they, just see, it's all a waste of life.
Each one precious to a mother, father, wife.
And child of strife.

Why fill our air with gasses, when it's none that we can breathe?
Why impoverish the masses, when they're just the ones we need?
Give of yourself, compassion is a start.
Soon you'll notice, the world of which you're a part.
Cross my heart.

Why is our planet dying, when it's all been done for greed?
Why are politicians lying, when the simply is no need?
Just once, maybe, they'll think of you and me.
No self interest, just let the people be.
Well - wait and see.

Why worry 'bout tomorrow, when tomorrow never comes?
Why fill yourself with sorrow, when joy within you runs?
Softly, slowly, listen hard you'll find.
Deep down, in there, an inner peace of mind.
So don't be blind

05 Sep 03 - 09:48 AM (#1013314)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Well! those are both mighty fine verses. Guest, your tale on New Hampshire is especially funny and well-built. John. I really like the song. Love to hear it.


05 Sep 03 - 11:54 AM (#1013387)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jack Lewin

Ode to Pete and Jack

On every farm not long ago
You had to have a team
To turn the sod, to haul the hay
To realize your dreams

Pete and Jack, you did just that!
That and so much more
You hauled the wood that fed the fires
You worked hard every day
If you didn't do what you did so well
We wouldn't be here today

With power and grace and steady of pace
The future rested on your backs'
So raise your glases and offer a toast
To the memory of Pete and Jack!


10 Sep 03 - 02:33 AM (#1016064)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Barden of England


You can hear the first part of 'Why?' at the following URL:- . There are 1 minute samples from some of my other songs there too.

10 Sep 03 - 11:05 AM (#1016299)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

ObSongs: I wrote this in 1953; it was published in my high school's magazine. The tune that inspired it was that of "Golden Vanity".

An Argument About That Which is Holy

There are many ghosts in life,
But a ghost begets love
And love begets curiosity
And curiosity begets light
And light kills ghosts.

"Once you learn a song, it is dead:
A song out of the darkness attracts you;
It is soft and beautiful:
It is an angel or a ghost
Floating free.
But you love it
And catch it somewhere else,
Get a good look,
Write it down,
Learn it, sing it,
Chain it to a piece of paper and a brain,
Enslave it, make it do your bidding,
And it seems to pine away and die in chains."

"But this is all wrong!
                Not red-blooded --
Ghosts are killed by their descendants; they are cannibal;
Not fit; they'll die out:
Facts and fun live on, and that is good;
That is the way to look at it:
Dying men leave ghosts, but dying ghosts
Leave better things behind:
Sing your song loudly -- give the spirits blood!"

23 Dec 03 - 02:26 PM (#1078645)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Lady In the Greens

Choosing green colors, braver souls
Forswear the blues,
Discard the grays,
Pursue fire in the form, and
Demand life or nothing.

These are the hearts -- bright blooms on the
screen of the soul, detected like nuclear tests,
The signature, unmistakeable,
of souls unwilling to die and
Choosing greens for all nows...

Fired in the bone, brightened in eye
These are the ones who see and
Who have learned the name of freedom
Is saying what you have seen, just
Part of the package, one
Well worth defending.

If hearts can go out, these
Always do, and mine
As part of this amazing
light-webbed world
Goes, so, to you.

This is the web that births song --
The one the birds in morning fly to --
How is it, when I approach its center,
I see you,smiling?

23 Dec 03 - 02:40 PM (#1078658)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peg

ooh! Amos, nice one! I a very curious as to what it's about...

I will share one I wrote about a month ago...

Transplendent We

It's deceptive, this light at Hallows.
A mask of wind and water, spinning, sparkling,
like silver spokes, or falling leaves, or candy floss,
or false conviviality, too-fast friends.
As the river curves to meet us, we shamble along,
soaked with mist, parched for ale,
like troubadours, or troubled ghosts,
on our way to a midnight market,
there to choose cakes and berries from the goblin stalls,
in the shadow of forbidden castles and glowing maples,
the walkways bright as coins beneath our feet.

Here where the sloping banks converge,
the trees lean in, as if to kiss,
thorned and black on the right, airy and golden on the left,
Bacchus, Hecate,
Apollo, Aphrodite,
nuzzling, glancing approval as we invent words
to mark this season of harvest.
No yellow moon, no sheaves of wheat, no bawdy lyric,
but ploughshares swinging,
hoofed beasts clocking over wet grey streets to sleep in tranquil

The red blush creeping up your throat surprises us all,
like brazen hollyhocks that suddenly realize
they've reached the second floor.
Dizzy with drink and drunk on autumn's ether,
we find the otherworld we've sought all evening.
Its hollow hills ring, empty as dessicated bulbs,
yet bright with color, flowing with nectar,
its great halls lit with rustic lanterns,
candles set in carved-out turnips, meant to keep spirits at bay,
and yet soon the very air is keening.
The sky is slowly tinted green.
Our tongues are slippery with juice.
The clock strikes three, three times,
and we are younger than we were.

I started to like you, your small hands like Proustian sweets.
I started to like you, you and your words like dark abundant rain,
poppyseeds poured out on cobblestones.
Simple folk we, laughing long songs like books of fruited verse.
There where the cats consider the canal,
the moon at last emerges, and we become
more and more
unfashionable by the minute.
I conjure a forest from a single tree:
like ardent sloths, we hold fast to its mutant trunk,
hard, rough, pulsing with faint heat.
It multiplies into a fairy-tale wood, varied as Paradise,
thick with English bluebells and rhetorical mushrooms;
it smells of sex and stagnant water,
hashish, leafmold, bile and burnt sugar, rotting velvet,
and tobacco that ought to be Turkish.

We could be anywhere: a Holland of the Mind,
or drowned Ys, forgotten Brittany,
a temple of jewels in Morocco,
a chalk hillside hewn by pagan muralists,
a green field in America,
a Danish bog stuffed with dead druids,
Constantinople, Brigadoon,
or a fragrant churchyard that beckons in dreams,
like mementos from a love lost in war-time,
coal-dust in your hair, violets in your pocket.

The veil between the worlds is thin, they say, tonight.
And if we walk now to the marketplace
(we fancy it built of fog and fireflies)
the goblins will smile, cry hail and welcome!
They nod their heads, stroke our hair, grasp our fingers,
whisper, yes, the veil grows thin, grows thin.
They hand us three lengths of shimmering cloth,
dyed the colour of winter plums, smelling of old roses.
We give them all the gold we have.
We wrap ourselves in purple.
We wake, and seven days have passed, or seven years.
Our fingers are torn, stained red with fruit.
Our lips are bruised, and taste of truth.
I touch your mouth, and it is the sun.

Leiden, Samhain, 2003

24 Dec 03 - 05:08 PM (#1079364)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Raedwulf

90% perspiration, 10% inspiration? More like 1% inspiration, 99% blind panic! My medieval society holds a Gorsedd (song, poetry or story) every Autumn. I made the mistake of winning it in 2001 (with a story). This granted me the dubious privilege of opening the Gorsedd in 2002.

I rarely poet, being (like Kipling, a writer I much admire) a storyteller & wordsmith, rather than a genuine po! ;) Nevertheless, for a cause that will never be adequately explained, I just had to write a poem... I sat under an Avebury stone (I wish I could claim some poetic inspiration from this, but no, I have the sensitivity of a brick...) on Friday afternoon desperately scribbling that which would be performed the following evening, trying to capture the essence of the competition that would follow my Intro piece...

It seemed to work... :)


I am the laughter in the voice
The sparkle in the eyes
The sorrow in the heart
I am the darkness at the core

I am the words that stir your soul
And the melody that lifts your heart
I am the ache of empty loneliness
And the strength that carries to the end

I am a candle, a bowl, a mysterious stranger
The cry of gulls, a stout companion, I am a silken thread
I am the raven, the lion, the broken word
The tattered rags, a forest's gloom, and the warming welcoming fire

I am the silent footfall that pursues
The unexpected cracking twig
The eyes that glitter in the night
The howling carried on the wind…

I am the shining sun, the driving rain
The boundless joy, the endless pain
I am the snowy blanket, the wind in the hair
I am the chill of death, & the life that dares…

I am madness and reason, both in one
The axe that severs bone from bone
I am the cunning and guile that steals as it please
I am the love that cleaves close, and the love that frees

Can you guess my name? This I doubt
For I am every thing, I am no thing
I am the song, I am the story
I am the Gorsedd

I am begun…

24 Dec 03 - 06:20 PM (#1079397)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Pretty work, Raedwolf!!

Peg -- breathtaking images and overtones. Love it!!


24 Dec 03 - 08:06 PM (#1079441)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joybell

Paddy was a little boy who was a Changling - (in modern terms a brain-damaged human child) He loved old fashioned stories and songs. "Undies" was the funniest word he knew, but it wouldn't fit into this poem. One day he wandered into the Australian bush and was never found.


Come away with me my Faerie-child
Away from the tears and pain
Come away my Changling, Faerie-child
Back to your home again.

You shall wear, on your golden curls
A shining, jewelled crown
Your shirt shall be of the finest silk
Your cloak of the feather-down.

A sleek grey hound I'll give to you
And a hawk with a sad, sweet cry
And you shall ride a Faerie steed
Into the sunset sky.

Silver-shod his hoofs shall be
And gaily you shall ride
A saddle hung with silver bells
A sword hung by your side.

By day we'll sleep 'neath the mossy bank
On a bed of the Wildwood flowers
And you must not heed the mortal ones
Who call through the sunshine hours.

And we shall rise in the green twilight
With a warm wind in our hair
And ride away to the Rainbow bridge
And cross in the evening air.

So come away my Faerie-child
Away from your Earth-bound pain
Come away my Faerie Changling child
Back to your home again.

                         Paddy's friend Joy

24 Dec 03 - 10:52 PM (#1079528)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Joy and Raedwolf, well done! I really like the way those read aloud.

The imagery in all recent postings is just wonderful. Thanks to all for sharing!


25 Dec 03 - 11:55 AM (#1079725)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

Sonnet 24/12/03                                    DCCCLXIX

Shall I light candles, thinking of my muse,
And the bright warmth that her smile gives to dawn?
Or should I incense burn, to let smoke choose
The future path to which my heart is drawn?
Shall I in solemn ceremony chant
A listing of desires, to offer wine
To wash away my fears? My efforts can't
Give absolution for dream she'd be mine.
Shall I in isolation inward turn,
To look upon forever, and abyss?
Is faith the answer, that my heart will learn
If I might find true heaven in her kiss?
I offer prayer to muse, that she might send
Enough of heart's desire to my soul mend.

26 Dec 03 - 10:20 AM (#1080239)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,sandy creek

dancing in the dark (growing up)

the boys hold up the wall
shuffling feet
in heat
afraid they will fall
if they step away...
the girls are all chatter
and clatter
of bangles and beads
and full of needs
of young women
coming of age...

post mortem(vietnam)

we felt much better
when the bad people died
we laughed
when the old women cried
it felt real good
when i killed him
i shot him
in the head
i held him by his hair
and shook him
as he bled
and laid on his bed
and sang death chants
with his children

28 Dec 03 - 02:45 PM (#1081041)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bearheart

Thanks all, I haven't even been able to read all of it, so many good words.

Little here has left me untouched-- but thanks especially to Peg and Deda for their contributions... and to Amos for the idea.

I'll be back for more.


28 Dec 03 - 07:38 PM (#1081178)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Through the years, we've grown used
to the truth-telling boor,
    so rejoice in the yeast
      and its white lies on beer --
in the bubble-borne boost
to the bedlam where you're
    a contented old beast
      in a Happy New Year.

29 Jan 04 - 01:05 AM (#1104014)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Tang the Orangutan

Ode To Lice

White and brown
Crawling on many legs
In the reddish brown jungle
Of my body hair
Communing with the fleas
Creating itches everywhere
Food for my empty belly
You crawl around me
Hiding amongst the mats
Of my soft long hair
Sucking my blood
Feeding your young
As I hunt for you
To eat you
A vicious circle.


29 Jan 04 - 01:41 AM (#1104028)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Teresa

Thank you, Amos! How inspiring all you 'catters are; beautiful poems here!

The Ocean

Here is a water droplet
Aware of an ocean;
So near, so near ...
Where is it?
It can be heard;
It can be felt;
But as soon as it's grasped,
It can't be held.
It pours;
It seeps;
It is everywhere.

The drop of water
Is at first afraid
Not to know where it ends
And the ocean begins ...
"Where is the ocean?" it wants to know.

The ocean carries the droplet
The ocean is made up of this
And many others.

The drop of water
Forgets itself
And suddenly
There is only the ocean
Made up of everything the drop of water is
And much, much, much more!

[And now, for something completely different ... ]

There once was a man of our time
Who tried his best to rhyme.
He thought and he thought,
His brain in a knot,
But all he could do was write nonsequiturs.
[sorry, couldn't resist; running away fast now ;) ]

29 Jan 04 - 04:55 AM (#1104082)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


You're welcome/!


29 Jan 04 - 09:22 AM (#1104256)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Cuilionn

Och, ye're aye a glorious bunch o wairdsmiths! But yir wee lassie's back tae test yir Scots-readin skills, sae Ah'm postin a "warm up exercise" (on mair than ane level) for ye tae peruse...

Ah postit this ane elsewhaur, twa days back, but Ah've tweakit the wairds a bit syne. Tis basit on the auld Celtic kythin that Winter cam when the Crone hardenit the yirth wi her sillar (silver) hammer, an Spring cam when the Maiden (aiblins Bridgit) cam thro, wavin her white wand tae saften the yirth aince mair.


When yon Auld Grannie gyres an gimps                
an unco dance on cranreuch groond                        
an gies her sillar curls a crimp,                        
Ye ken that Imbolc's comin roond.                        

When sillar hammers, blaw for blaw                        
fa habber-haird in hinmaist hone                        
then haud ye fast, for soon the thaw                        
will prize awa cauld winter's loan.                

Nae lang she'll lanesame bide, nor sup                 
Wi'oot the dochter she lo'es best;                         
Nae grannie redds the kailyaird up                        
But for the thocht o some comin guest!                
Nae mair the lanesame anvil-drum                
Will mark the pace o Grannie's dance--
The Lass o the Lintin Wand shall come                
An lowpin lambies hae their chaunce--                 

For Grannie Cailleach's time grows short                
An wee snaw-drappies rowthie ring                        
for Bridgit cams, blithe hope tae sport                
An after Bridgit cams-- the Spring!

Glossary: unco=strange, cranreuch=frosty, ken=know, Imbolc=Celtic Feast/source of Groundhog's Day, blaw=blow, fa=fall, habber=stutter, hinmaist=last, haud=hold, prize=pry, awa=away, wi'oot=without, dochter=daughter, redds the kailyaird up=cleans the place, thocht=thought, comin=coming, Lintin Wand=glinting wand of Bridgit, lowpin=leaping, chaunce=chance, Cailleach=crone/Celtic Earth-Goddess, snaw-drappies=snowdrops, rowthie=abundantly, cams=comes, blithe=joyous

--Yir vairsifyin lass, Cuilionn

29 Jan 04 - 12:06 PM (#1104391)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Coming home from a job in an orchard in New Salem MA I go tmy car stuck next to one of those innumerous family graveyards scattered throughout New England

Joshua Sawyer

I doubt I'd ever have taken this road
had I known how fallen it really was
to disrepair: driving comically,
skirting ruts and high boulders, grimacing
at every bang on the oil pan.
I tell you it's the old road to Wendell —
that they don't make them like this anymore.

We're bound by curious obligations,
and so stop by an old family plot
walled in by piles of jumbled fieldstone,
cornered to the edge of what once was field.
The picket gateway still stands intact,
somebody propped up leaning on a stick,
an anonymous gesture of reverence.
Only nature disrespects: toppling stone,
bursting with suckers and wild raggedness.
A gravestone, schist of worn slate, leans weathered:

Joshua Sawyer Died Here 1860

Another stone, cracked, has fallen over.
I reset the stone, and scrape the caked earth
as if studying some split tortoise shell,
and have keyed in to a distant birth —
His wife Ruth died young; so I picture him
stern with his only daughter, only child —
speaking for a faith which could defy her.
There'd be no passing onto when she died —
twenty-two, more words beside her mother.
Still these stones and fields you kept in order,
long days spent forcing sharp turns on nature,
accepting the loose stone and thin topsoil.
A Wendell neighbor must have buried you
whispering a eulogy which is as lost
as your daughter, your wife, and this farm:

'Joshua Sawyer

I've never been down this road before
I would like to speak with you of faith.

29 Jan 04 - 01:23 PM (#1104456)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,mudcat haikuist

I fart, cheeks vibrate
people gag, choke, retch and puke.
My shit doesn't stink.

29 Jan 04 - 03:36 PM (#1104543)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Coming home from a job in an orchard in New Salem MA I go tmy car stuck next to one of those innumerous family graveyards scattered throughout New England

Joshua Sawyer

I doubt I'd ever have taken this road
had I known how fallen it really was
to disrepair: driving comically,
skirting ruts and high boulders, grimacing
at every bang on the oil pan.
I tell you it's the old road to Wendell —
that they don't make them like this anymore.

We're bound by curious obligations,
and so stop by an old family plot
walled in by piles of jumbled fieldstone,
cornered to the edge of what once was field.
The picket gateway still stands intact,
somebody propped up leaning on a stick,
an anonymous gesture of reverence.
Only nature disrespects: toppling stone,
bursting with suckers and wild raggedness.
A gravestone, schist of worn slate, leans weathered:

Joshua Sawyer Died Here 1860

Another stone, cracked, has fallen over.
I reset the stone, and scrape the caked earth
as if studying some split tortoise shell,
and have keyed in to a distant birth —
His wife Ruth died young; so I picture him
stern with his only daughter, only child —
speaking for a faith which could defy her.
There'd be no passing onto when she died —
twenty-two, more words beside her mother.
Still these stones and fields you kept in order,
long days spent forcing sharp turns on nature,
accepting the loose stone and thin topsoil.
A Wendell neighbor must have buried you
whispering a eulogy which is as lost
as your daughter, your wife, and this farm:

'Joshua Sawyer

I've never been down this road before
I would like to speak with you of faith.

30 Jan 04 - 03:26 PM (#1105385)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Megan L

Farewell My Son

I waved to you my son
My chef's whites gleaming as proudly as my smile
I nudged my apprentice "That's my boy"
And as we watched you across the water
My heart was filled with joy.

At ships rail and on shore we did wave
We weren't to know that sunny day
That within the cycle of the sun
Our war would start and end
And one of us would have a sailor's grave.

The great liner sailed on
On shore the mighty shipyards thundered
453 growing daily with honest toil
Rivets flying, hammers ringing, little knowing
For one of us the war would soon be done.

And on the liner, ladies danced sequinned gowned
Men black as hell fed hungry fires
Diamonds of sweat their only adornment
A gong calling passengers to dinner
Soon all would be drowned.

Death stalked round Eire's shore
Silent streak towards the mighty hull
Ripping into her side, tearing at her life
Explosive sound, screams of trapped and dying
Stench of burning flesh. She is no more.

Still the shipyards thunder on
453 a silent shadow now waiting in the wings
The unborn ghost of Liners yet to come
Waiting till men may safely sail round Erie's shore
She will not go where I have gone
Farewell my son
......    ....    ....

My father and his apprentice stood at the edge of the Clyde and waved farewell to his apprentices father who was a cook on the Athena (think I've remembered the name) that was the last time the boy ever saw his father.

Megan L

30 Jan 04 - 03:41 PM (#1105401)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Megan L

Wasn't sure I got the name right so checked his writing, she was the Athenia. found this report of her sinking.

Athenia was the first British ship sunk by a German U-boat in World War II. Germany had invaded Poland on September 1 and Britain declared war on Germany at 1115 on September 3, shortly after Athenia sailed from Glasgow en route to Montreal with 1,100 passengers embarked, more than 300 of whom were American citizens. That afternoon she was spotted by U-30 about 250 miles northwest of Inishtrahull, Northern Ireland. Although German U-boats were supposed to be operating under prize regulations that obliged them to stop and search any potential targets, Lieutenant Fritz-Julius Lemp decided Athenia was an armed merchant cruiser and fired two torpedoes without warning. The ship sank with the loss of 112 passengers and crew, but despite the fact that among these were 28 Americans, within hours, President Franklin D. Roosevelt had announced that his government was preparing "a declaration of American neutrality."

01 Feb 04 - 09:18 PM (#1106911)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: John Hardly

Tonight...I'll sing you to sleep for the first time knowing
We'll be sharing this space for a while.
I'll sing and play and you'll do the growing.
Hey, can you feel it when I smile?

And I'll hold you against my rosewood guitar
While I sing from my newly blessed soul
And you'll have the best seat in the house by far.
My heart, my life, this sound---so full.

So I'll sing the high notes (a nice way to start)
This guitar will fill in the low,
Between you, and me, and this guitar,
Tonight...I'll sing to you this lulla-hello

I just had a funny thought.
If some day you should learn to play the guitar like me,
And you press your ear against its top as you play, like all guitar players do…
Will you suddenly remember this time together?

01 Feb 04 - 10:08 PM (#1106937)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jeri

There is some REALLY good stuff in this thread!

Inspired by watching videos of some of those 'good time boys' with a good friend, and a long conversation I'd once had with a man who'd occasionally played with Bob Wills. This may turn out to be a song... I dunno.

He sat there in the corner
Staring miles beyond the stage
A sepia tinted image
In this electric neon age
I bought us a round and said "Friend,
There's a story in your eyes."
He said "I used to play up there,
But how the time it flies,

All the good-time boys are gone away
One by one they disappeared
Like some old photograph
Much handled and dog-eared
I guess there was too much light
And it caused the world to fade
And I lived in the shadows
So I'm the one who stayed

I don't recall the details
Of days now past and gone
But I remember lighter laughter
I remember louder song
Maybe I felt safer
To travel on my own
But now the landscape's foriegn
And this world is not my home

When I laugh now, my eyes feel cold
I laugh because I should
I see shadows in the spotlights
Where once, giants stood
Some of them were strangers
Some of them were friends
Who set out upon the road that starts
Where the horizon ends

Sometimes I hear an echo
In this empty place
Of a song they used to sing
Or I recall a face
Sometimes memory gets lost
In rude insistant noise
But oh, how I miss
Those good-time boys"

01 Feb 04 - 10:22 PM (#1106946)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Jeri, that's gotta turn into a song! Well done, womon!

Cuillion, I've been getting rusty in my reading, thansk for the practise!

Johnfitz, I've been to so many graveyards in New England, much as you describe. Quite beautiful, thanks for sharing!

Megan, that is fascinating and really poignant. Thanks!


02 Feb 04 - 04:14 AM (#1107067)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Barden of England

NAIVIGATOR     Copyright John Barden 2001

Imagine youself a jellyfish, pumping away in clear blue forever oceans
Never knowing where you're coming from, nor where you're going to,
But navigate you do, Vasco da Gama in living goo.

Spanning oceans glittering wide, the vast organic great divide,
Spinning, casting tentacles, of paralysing manacles.
Going nowhere with no great purpose, returning with even less,
A larger, stronger gelatinous mess.

02 Feb 04 - 09:35 AM (#1107250)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Dave Bryant

Simon (Harlowpoet) seems to be conspicuous by his absence.

15 Feb 04 - 05:23 AM (#1116234)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: harlowpoet

OK Dave. I'm here now

Last night With Mary

How did it go
Last night with Mary?
And so, I told them
Hoary and hairy
Finding and fumbling
Tossing and tumbling
Panting and puffing
Writhing and roughing
Tying and trying
Sobbing and sighing
Seeking and shrieking
Perking and peaking
Fawning and facing
Calling and chasing
Hiding and hoping
Going and groping
Crawling and clashing
Sweating and smashing
Squashing and squealing
Rockin'and reeling
And feeling regrets
That's how it gets
Catching the cat
To take to the vets!


15 Feb 04 - 09:30 AM (#1116313)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

N ice piece o'work, Simon!!


24 Feb 04 - 01:13 PM (#1122686)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jack Lewin

To See What Those Eyes Have Seen

I took a walk down the the park in our town
To watch the parade go by
With their medals and barets, this was our day
To honor them and those who have died.
The flags were waving, the pipes were playing
And as they made their way past me
I Stood there and stared and wondered what it was like
To have seen what those eyes have seen.

Did those eyes see a friend die in his arms
His body twisting and writhing in pain.
Did those eyes see things that he'd pray to god
He will never have to see again.
Every day there was a constant struggle
To follow orders and try to survive
And after all that they still think they're lucky
Because they came home alive.

Did those eyes have the eyes of another man
In his sights as a battle began
Knowing full well it's him or it's me as he squeezed off the trigger again.
After all of these years he can still see his face
He can still hear the shot and his cries.
Innocence lost in a fight to the death
That will haunt him til the day he dies.

So as the crowd gathered around and they laid the wreaths down
The band played songs in the rain
And then for a moment the brohters in arms
Were reporting for duty again.
The the band grew quiet and we all bowed our heads
And the last post was all you could hear
Then I thought why don't we honor our heroes
More than one day a year!!

Jack Lewin

24 May 04 - 12:29 PM (#1192853)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Blackcatter


24 May 04 - 01:28 PM (#1192900)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Banks of the Far Missouri

While you grappled with budgets
balancing numbers, battling bureaucratic banality
Thumbing through ledgers in a stifling room
Did you look out to the river
placid, seemingly endless
But not to you...
You had traced the path of the water
to its rocky root
stood astride and drank of it
Those days of pain, fear, awe, mystery, transcendence
Marked the crest of your life's wave
Boon companions, grace of savage tribes
Rustle of abalone shells, shrill of eagle whistle
Meat roasted like a sacrifice
in the sacred circle
All this lay across the shining mountains and years away
The long path twisted back on itself at last
leaving your body wounded in the dust of Tennessee
freeing your soul at last
to haunt the banks of the far Missouri

24 May 04 - 01:38 PM (#1192911)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

The Witness.

How delicately each flake of snow falls,
Silently landing on it's own carpet.
Swelling the ground relentlessly,
With drifts that ever cover walls.
How carefully the man next door treads,
As he de-ices and prepares his car.
He could use his legs to get to work,
It's not far.
Steadily he reverses from his drive,
Out onto the big main road.
On the ice a lorry skids to avoid him,
And spills its load.
The man next door is just oblivious,
To the carnage he's caused today.
He puts his car in forward gear.
And drives away.

Georgiansilver (2002)
Be Blessed.

24 May 04 - 01:39 PM (#1192914)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Aw, sweet fucking Jesus. LEJ, you put us all to shyme!! Effin' byootiful, man.


25 May 04 - 04:16 AM (#1193439)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Old Doc

I recently heard a very charming song on the radio and can not seem to find out the title or artist. It is done by a male quartet with a female lead with an intrumental break. Some of the lyrics are: "You don't have to play my request, but I hope that you'll do your best. I've been listening to your show on the radio and you seem like a friend to me." Hope someone out there recognises this gem.

26 May 04 - 03:34 PM (#1194460)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce


27 May 04 - 06:17 AM (#1194762)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: s&r

Some folk would say
I live by rote
Most of my day
a golden nugget
here and there
along the way

Along the way
A stranger's smile
as if to say
A friendly 'Hi'
A little care
can make my day

Can make my day
Become a song
a tune to play
a major seventh
soft and clear
No price to pay

No price to pay
the smile was free
It made my day
it wasn't much
they didn't care
Some folk might say

27 May 04 - 08:15 AM (#1194848)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: maisienan

Here's one about my tangled love-life - I'm a taurus woman married to an aquarian - never an easy option - and this poem is for a lovely leo guy I met on Mayday

27 May 04 - 08:36 AM (#1194870)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: maisienan


I am the earth
He is the sky
Ever distant and aloof
No matter how high my mountain
It will never be part of him
No matter how bright his stars
They will ever look down
Coldly glinting
Too long I longed for his love
No longer

But you
You are the fire and I am the forest
Be careful
For the smell of woodsmoke so enchants me
If I feed you my debris, my deadwood
We may enhance each other
Gypsies dancing in the clearing
But cling to me and you consume me
Possess me and you destroy me
The morning shows blackened stumps
Grey ashes

Somewhere, somewhere
There is a man of water
A lake at the mountain's foot
A river through the forest flowing
A sea around my shore
And when the rain falls
He will surely come

27 May 04 - 10:54 AM (#1195015)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca


The senses
feed us
ephemeral and brief
for a short time
Then exits
like a thief

a rose with dewdrops
A hovering kestrel
A kitten playing
Your lover asleep
fresh baked bread
Spring flowers
Crushed Basil
A loved body

A climbing rope
A cold beer

Chilled Chablis
sea on the wind
Fresh pesto

cats footsteps
baby sleeping
owl hoot
lovers groan of pleasure

the senses,
like poems
feed us
in bursts
each glimpse
bite or sniff
in itself
but part
of a whole

27 May 04 - 11:11 AM (#1195039)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

That is a rich piece, Micca!


27 May 04 - 05:42 PM (#1195390)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Macha

My life is a thin thread
I spin the thread around my fingers
Winding, winding

- me

15 Jul 04 - 06:19 PM (#1226489)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I am constantly being surprised at the insights and skills and art that appears on this thread. Many thanks.


24 Jul 04 - 05:28 PM (#1233020)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

I was in a car accident on June 13, forced off the road by an SUV that didn't see me, didn't slow down. Here's a poem.

Missing my forehead

Car having struck cement embankment,
Head having struck steering wheel,
Pushing myself back to sitting up:
Rear-view mirror reflects, just above my eyebrows,
A streak of white skull, and bright red borders.

Faces of strangers show ÒOh God! Oh my God!Ó
But they say, ÒHold still. How old are you?
What is your name? This your nurse.Ó
ÒWhat is your name?Ó I ask them all, each face.
Each face too strong, too polite, too willed, too busy
To say, ÒOh my God.Ó


Now my forehead shows a well-stitched line,
Defined, of a certain shape, unexpected,
Hard to gaze upon Ð Hard to see reflected
In the gazes I see.

I remember my brow as nothing, a blank space. Not now.
I close my eyes to see it. From here it seems
A buzzing, red line of itch and burn.
It is new. It will fade, soften.
It will not vanish.
This is my face now.

24 Jul 04 - 06:13 PM (#1233040)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


When home the truck comes high with hay,
And divers splash and sunlight dapples,
And loud black clouds relieve the day,
And chickens peck at sour apples,
And fans drown out the drowsy word,
Then nightly sings the mockingbird
In every mode at disk and dawn,
While sweaty Gabriel mows the lawn.

24 Jul 04 - 06:17 PM (#1233043)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Beautiful job, Deda!! Wow!! Stunning -- in every sense of the word.


24 Jul 04 - 06:39 PM (#1233055)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Great imagery, Joe_F! Reminds me of Kendall singing Dave Mallett's tune on haying, "Make Hay While the Sun Shines".

24 Jul 04 - 09:28 PM (#1233143)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Liquid Origami

We believe we know, each seeing
Who folded these deep seams and lines
In the very fabric we are.

The rivers of our times flow through
The spaces so folded; minds
And heart's panic scorch the seams

To feel the hands on the axis
Bringing the deep existnece in
To the lines adored and forming

Believing, we know
Where the folds are made.
To become the river-driver

Answers the fury
Of the plain sheet of beginnings.
Riding the river steals your days;

Reading the folding leads
Beyond the eternal belief--so
we know.

24 Jul 04 - 09:36 PM (#1233151)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Heart's Places

(For Red Warren)


The man said it all well. As young sunlight and old granite, he was there,
Telling stories of the world. You could feel

The worlds unfolding, taste the weather and strain, the laughing, the passions, see the long hard marches in his words.

He would lean to the children's call, and answer their wishes with worlds in the giving.
As the early sun and the ripe granite do, he gave and gave.

Tell me.


Great spirits make great faces, colored and living.

They are the far reachers. They make world spaces,

Founded in fires and in clay, sung in high tempests

Where the hot light flashes, iced where the need for ice is,

So great spirits form the world. More than the season's passing

Marks their time. Imagine...


Red drums over long rivers, black drumming cities

White singing praises, red blood on old sabers

Deep hearts full, iced lakes and hot harvesting

The long highways and the gentle furrows made.

Here is the red man's answer, there are hawks calling.

Here is the black man's sigh, there the hard cut of steel.

Here is hot horse muscle and hoofs on the dirt hills,

There the town of the dull, the wicked, the cross

The tire's scream, and the deep cave's silent wait, all in one land.


Dry pages, running tears and deep frozen glens -- these things
Are one in the heart.

Sad dogs and laughing glory, wines and the open seas, one. Worlds in the giving,

Children can hear him answering: wishes answered with color, living men, strong faces, bright laughing reason.

A far reaching hand shows them: the heart is more than its seasons.

Here is a great spirit making great spaces, and there he is still,

Only ask again, and he will start.

24 Jul 04 - 11:17 PM (#1233183)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Fooles Troupe

WhoooHooo! I been Published for the first time!!!!

Hallo Robin,

This is to let you know that your poem "Gather Ye Pigeons While Ye May" has been published on the Albion Magazine Online website in the Diversions section of the Summer 2004 edition.

Many thanks for your contribution; I really appreciate it.




25 Jul 04 - 01:03 AM (#1233229)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Congratulations, Robin Goodfellow!

Let me add that the PLURAL of do (3rd person) is "do". "Doth" is singular only. I would fix that were I you.

Best regards,


25 Jul 04 - 05:21 AM (#1233280)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Villan

Got up this morning and decided to put my thoughts into verse about the events related to changing venue at Market Rasen Folk Club. Never done this before so please excuse me if it not very good.

The Market Rasen Folk Club Blues

One day I had a dream
To start a folk club I did beam
I went along to the social club
Who said luvely jubbly, just the job

So we got started back in March
With much hard work and the occasional fart
The singers got quickly to their task
Much more from them I couldn't ask

It became apparent very soon
These artists sang a lovely tune
People came from near and far
As the club pulled in the money over the bar

Everybody seemed very happy
Until this little chappy
Who rose up from the committee
And said hang on here we want a bigger fee

Now the organiser said get stuffed
The committee they were not chuffed
They gave our Les a red card
Which he thought was rather hard

These little scheming money makers
With brains no bigger than a shred of paper
Would not back down on the price
And thought our Les was in a vice

But with sleeves rolled up and a big determination
Our Les set about finding a new location
This proved very difficult and hard to find
It was becoming such a bind

Then all of a sudden when out of the blue
He found a village hall that would do
The people there are very nice
They have a bar with drinks at an affordable price

This place is called Walesby Village Hall
Where a big welcome will be there for all
So come on down you have a choice
To come and sing with good cheer and voice

So here's a warning to all those money makers
Who want to screw the folk club scene shakers
If you can't see the business sense and get smart
Stick your business up your arse


25 Jul 04 - 12:28 PM (#1233402)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Dances in Silence

(for Nancy)

You are the dance that has no words and rises
In the spring's own flood to the wind and rain
That sweeps the silence into the noise-worn bone
And raises the laughing of hearts again.

Only there do none dance alone.
The hard breath and wild limbs' sway tells
All the story, and the soul's devises
Rising with the time of far and endless bells.

                                                                                    San Diego
                                                                                    February 21, 2003

28 Jul 04 - 09:42 PM (#1236003)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Deda

Amos, I thought I had posted an answer to this a few days ago, but it didn't arrive. Thanks for your kind words about the forehead poem. I have always loved your poem about Red, which seems quite different here than I remember it -- has it been revised? And I love the very idea of "liquid origami", which evokes the movement of water, like the currents in a river, folding into, over and below one another. "Nancy" is also lovely!

Congrats to Foolestroupe on getting into print! Bravo.

28 Jul 04 - 09:59 PM (#1236014)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

There's a different one called "Jack's People" which you may have in mind, Deda. Thanks for the kind words -- people like you keep the spark alive, for better or for worse!!!

Next time you come to town you can meet Nancy.



06 Oct 04 - 01:29 PM (#1290405)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I am sure there is more and better stuff out there, fellow folkies!

I dunno about better but here's one of the more germane to the singers:


A song well writ, each tone in place,
An' harmony's approval marked upon
The temple's face. Rancor was gone,
And envy. Desperation too
Had been dispelled by grace,
Found in the heart's deeper numbers right,
Dug out dark ciphered clay, unleashing light,
Replacing what was lost with what was true.
A song well writ, the singer and the sung-to, You.

# # #

25 Oct 04 - 09:17 AM (#1306520)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Bonnie Buck

Dear Mudcat I am sure i know you from another program. We are friends did you ever publish your cookbook? I would truly be honored to have some of my poetry viewed on your site. Please notify me via email if that is okay with you Thanks Bonnie Buck

25 Oct 04 - 12:34 PM (#1306703)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I emailed Miss Buck and suggested she join and post freely.


25 Oct 04 - 12:37 PM (#1306704)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Chris Green

A haiku my father wrote:

Is waking up on Monday
To find that it's Saturday.

26 Oct 04 - 09:00 AM (#1307498)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Wilfried Schaum

to Kurt Vonnegut, Jr
Infantryman, Scout, POW in Germany

So it goes
An on and on
Imagine that!


26 Oct 04 - 09:38 AM (#1307530)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: UncleToad

Snow Men

I wonder
where they live
these men of darkness
with nothing to give
save a smile
and a wave.
Flying their rags
like ceremonial flags.
Where do they go
when the snows fly thin
rolling and blowing
with the harshness
of the harsh winter wind.
I wonder if they die
and are replaced
by other men
when springtime rushes in...

Or do they simply bend
and fold themselves
into the blackening night
and wait in stoned silence
for the coming of the light...

...please help homeless veterans.

Thanks to all...UncleToad

26 Oct 04 - 10:37 AM (#1307596)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Again awed by your words.


26 Oct 04 - 09:14 PM (#1308195)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,H.B. Carlisle

Hey there, you, walkin' all alone,
    It's me talking to ya, me, the stone!
    Why don't you haul off an' give me a boot?
    I've spent 10 years beside this root.
    I come into town on a gravel truck,
    They unloaded me here and here I'm stuck.
    The guy on my right is old Gravel Gus,
    He got stuck in the tread of a Greyhound Bus,
    Spent 15 years out on the road!
    Woulda' been there yet, but the bus got towed,
    An' he flew out and he landed here,
    Now all his travel tales I gotta hear.
    Guy on my left is Old Man Slate,
    Kid skimmed him across the lake,
    He made 15 skips far and wide,
    And fell in the grass on the other side---
    Say, you look sorta drunk the way you walk,
    And you know durn well us stones can't talk!
                                  H.B. Carlisle

28 Oct 04 - 05:19 PM (#1309912)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Eddie O'Hara

A poem I wrote for fun!

Stan McCann's Dinner

Stan McCann
A thinking young man
Thought, "Hot sardines are better!"

So, off he ran
And bought a can
Of sardines for his dinner

Stan, heated the can
In a frying pan
Full of water and let it simmer

Then, taking the can
From the frying pan
He opened it up for dinner

On a chair sat Stan
With fork and can
Sprinkling his salt and pepper

But, as he began
To eat from the can
He said, "Cold sardines are better!"

Moral: What may seem best, is not always best, and sometimes it's hard to know what's better.

Eddie O'Hara(c)2004

28 Oct 04 - 07:39 PM (#1310042)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: UncleToad

Three pieces to ponder...

I have long tried to go home
but the doors
are closed
the windows
will not open
but still I keep on hoping
that someday
will let me in

I was half way to the moon
and I thought
this is too damned cold
my ship and my bones
are too damned old
I was half way to the sun
and I thought
this is too damned hot
and like it as not
the heat shield won't hold
(goes back to "too damned old")

It seems as though
we slipped
along the way
night after night
day after day
we colored within the lines
kept our blinds
half up and
half down
afraid we would drown
if we wandered
to close
to the edge
of the world
such a lonely death
from the rest
of us
we came for you
but you had gone
hope your new home
is what
you want
it to be...

Thankee kindly, UncleToad

29 Oct 04 - 01:19 AM (#1310258)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

The recent additions are great! Keep them coming, folks, and thanks for sharing!

29 Oct 04 - 01:24 AM (#1310264)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: chris nightbird childs

Welly, well... as long as we're doing this:

No Revolution -

All my loves lost
& gained in the past
couldn't make a bit of difference
With their sayings and saviors,
& etchings on the backs
of a thousand notebooks
Now it's all down to me
Me, me, me, me

No revolution
No evolution
It won't be reinstated
like an American Dream
What that might be to millions
of unsuspecting people
might not
be that to you…

You can have your white-picket fence,
But how you get there
is up to you
& no one else.
Although people are willing
to live through you,
will they be willing
to die for you too?

Wistful Time

The Mayfair gathering outside
Blossoming rose rises in the air
Growing out of the cool ground
Of the garden
The cat's squirrel won't be caught today
Too busy chasing its tail
'round the sitting room floor –
I venture out for a quick smoke,
And notice the glow of lights
Witness the question of 'what?'
A sickness? An end?
It's strange how my life's just begun
So young, so old
I hope, I wonder, I wish them well…

I flick the end into the air,
And it rests on the cool ground
It bounces away its last life –
Walking back inside
I whistle away a wistful time
For senior citizens and squirrels

thanks Cats...

04 Nov 04 - 05:45 PM (#1316925)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Last at Bat

Handful of spit and dirt
Cleats sunk in the crumbling earth
He huffed a frosty breath of October air.
The sinews still rippled in forearms
As they did nineteen years past
Knuckles white on the handle
as the bat swung slowly in anticipation
Uniform stretched tight across a spreading belly,
and black hair frosted with gray
pinch-hitter for a blasted hurler
in the last inning
of the last game of the year.
Crowd applauds
A few, remembering, stand in salute
and the young pitcher wipes an upper lip
wide-eyed shakes off the call
nods to the sinker
kicks and delivers
The ball a specter in the batter's eyes,
he swings and misses fastball
knife in the shoulder muscle
wincing hard as the catcher's mitt pops
Stepping back
Spits in the dust
yanks shirt-front square
He steps into the box again
flexes aching shoulder
as the bat repeats its slow threat
Pitcher's arm drops
the curve hangs
then dodges his bat.
On third base Schneider takes a lead
The pitcher stares him down
and the batter sees
in split second
the knuckleball grip
before the glove conceals it
He waits and it is thrown
center-shot and numbers-high
no spin
the stitching motionless
as it drops like a round stone
in a dark quiet pool
His shoulder screams at the contact
the hickory electric in his hands
which carry the handle through
as the shattered wooden barrel
skips down the third base line
shortstop vaults in vain
as the ball falls behind him
like a dove shot from the sky
He flings away the broken shaft
halfway to first
sees the baseman strain
toward the expected throw
shortstop scrambling
lump of the bag beneath left toe
snap of the baseman's mitt
and the umpire calls safe
As he turns back to first base
he hears the sound of the crowd
and feels the sweat cooling in his collar
he draws deep breath and holds it in
as if the very air were sweet with magic
and he longed to keep it inside him
for ever

16 Jan 05 - 06:32 PM (#1380109)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Queen of Dreams

Queen of Dreams

What forces the blood that forces the bone
That presses hardly on the soft
Queen of dreams oh, widely, sweet?
That opens the river of days in floods of hope,
A million years calling for being in ten million pounding orders
Rolled down finely to the spilling fire of this instant crying,
Boiled in a power of thousands of two,
Screaming together of now.
Why we all despair and throw in, unleashed, is all because
So much irresistible blood is speaking now at once.

San Diego
January, 2005

23 Jan 05 - 09:33 PM (#1386651)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

From 1993, but still untarnished:

The Monster That Cures the World

The monster that cures the world
Has no middle name and does not know
His family tree past Grandmother, nor
Does he care to. He cannot spell
With high certainty and flounders
In voicing his heart grammatically.

Some say he is a traitor to the race
Because he has only his lifetime to spend
And turned away from history to face his dirty fellows
Hearing and replying, hot and rough.
Condemned by poets to repeat his past
He does not mind, for any grade will serve
As long as there are people in it
And an occasional recess.

The world that cured the monster
Taught him that all faces
Stand for hearts, and names
Have something to them beyond the wind
He had thought was breaking on rot
Inside the many hard menhirs of the world —
Useless except for mumblings and
Sexless derivation.

Between them they may discover
The monster's middle name
And the menhir's conscience. Then will
A moonlit dance ensue
WIldly accelerating where the stones
Meet the heart and the heart makes
Love to form. Such a dance will
Trumpet endlessly across the moors and oceans
Of our time.

23 Jan 05 - 10:59 PM (#1386712)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Leadfingers

On BBC Radio 4 - The Shortest poem in The English language ! 'FLEAS'


Had 'em

Short and sweet like a roasted maggot !!

24 Jan 05 - 11:03 AM (#1386967)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,blushing catter

Held, safe and warm in your arms
Protected from the world outside
Took a long time for me to trust
But you in your wisedom, were patient
and waited
And together we healed
And together we cried
And together we laughed
And together we loved

28 Mar 05 - 09:54 AM (#1445510)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


A well -fed man farts.
A crow leaps from a high tree,
And flies over the neighborhood.
All this must mean something!


31 Mar 05 - 10:09 AM (#1447890)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

One Inch Is Life

The wide plastered wall supports one spidered form
A long-legs, venturing out on long-leg business.
He startles the powers of the place, and does not much care.
That is not his concern, but to step ahead boldly.
One inch is life, centered on white yards of cold stone,
And in that irreverent scuttle lies the gypsy secret.

San Diego
March 31, 2005

31 Mar 05 - 11:52 AM (#1447992)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Frankham

Yeah, Sandy Creek. The Old Man! Fine stuff.


31 Mar 05 - 01:14 PM (#1448074)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Goody; I was just trying to figure out how to get at this thread to bring it back.

31 Mar 05 - 07:26 PM (#1448438)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Leadfingers

I think that I will never see a Billboard lovely as a tree
And seldom can I ever Boast that I have the two hundredth Post

31 Mar 05 - 07:42 PM (#1448454)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Saturday Night in Everett, Washington

(from a slightly more innocent time, in July 1967,
when they were called go go dancers, and they
wore complete bikinis)

Sharon's shaking that shapely frame again,
Making goosebumps pop up on the skin,
Making male minds meditate on sin,
Quivering, shivering, stretching your mind thin,
To the unintellectual, sensual, sexual din,
Trembling, twitching, twisting you within,
A graceful animal, molded in skin,
Sharon's go - go - go dancing again.

04 Sep 05 - 02:32 PM (#1555995)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Megan L


Here I am again
My hopes my dreams are shattered
On my knees again
Won't you help me now.

And then the sun shines
I turn my back
I walk away from you.

Here I am again
My hopes my dreams are shattered
On my knees again
Won't you Please help me now.

Won't I ever learn?
You want me, to grow up
To put away the toys of my life
You want me, to grow up
To come and be your bride

Here I am again
I've fallen, knees all bleeding
I'm holding out again
Please love me now

Won't I ever learn
You want me, to grow up
To know you always love me
You want me, to grow up
To walk forever by your side.

05 Sep 05 - 05:20 PM (#1556911)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Prayer for the Hummingbird

Down on the lake edge, grasses bow to the cold snow-wind,
And bare aspens agree, bending toward hard waters without solace.
The snowdust wavers in the white eye, sending time into whirls and colors
Into oblivion, although
In California we are not supposed to know
What all these chills are for,
Nor meant to face
This hard bright water blind.

Under the carport, hard edges have been placed
-- They snap at every passage as far
As the heart can hear or even know
Under the law of snow wind
Coloring the very mind.
Those who still have far to go
Must think harder, hold the star
Just there, beyond the frost-long face.

This is where blood and fingers go
The private door
Fighting the private race
And no-one will mind
That time, unkind,
And hardened places
Will not reveal the core ?
Where the real heart knows alone,

Knows and know

06 Sep 05 - 02:50 PM (#1557824)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Pistachio

I've been amazed by the beautiful words enclosed on this thread and offer two little verses that 'came into my head' when I heard the sad news,and I've just realised Michael would have been 13 today :(

For Michael - September 6th 1993 - November 20th 1994

There's one more star in the sky tonight
Way up high shining so bright
Shining down on his old home
Telling his Mum he's not alone
Telling his Dad, his brothers too
'Don't ever forget the life we knew
Sharing laughter, joy and tears
Don't forget me over the years'
x x x x

March 1996

It could have been the children in my son's class today
Thankfully, tomorrow - they will all go out to play
Sadly your tomorrows will never be the same
Our hearts are breaking with yours
We pray for you Dunblane.

06 Sep 05 - 03:44 PM (#1557865)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Firecat

I wrote this after hearing about yet more bombing in Iraq. Sorry if it's a bit depressing.

The Silent One

I am no one
At night I walk through your world unseen
Observing the fear and sadness you live in
I am alone

I am no one
I hear the cries, the screams of the dying
I look and pass on, I cannot assist
I am helpless

I am no one
I see the death and destruction you face
The blown apart walls and blood splattered floors
I am afraid

I am no one
I have left your world unseen
The news reports tell of my departure
I am dead.

06 Sep 05 - 11:37 PM (#1558181)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Kingfish

The Kingfish is the only thing
Lives in water black as this
where the Dead lie still
and the vapors kill
like a spectre bridegroom's kiss
Between the houses, laid like graves
with their broken window eyes
reflected Moon bends into lines
as the Kingfish fin slides by
Prowling bands of thieves give way
to the feral dogs and cats
where even serpents twist and die
to feed the feasting rats
Roaring flame erupting
into a blistered sky
drops hissing cinders in the inland sea
beneath the Full Moon's bloodshot eye
When the voices of the Slaughtered
trump the voices of the Saved
and the fingers point the Guilty out
in the Home of the Free and the Slave
When babies mouth on breasts of stone
and die in their Mother's sweat
and old ones turn their eyes within
as politicians voice regret

Beware the shape beneath the flood
where the Kingfish sucks a breath
Poison is his lifeblood
as he feeds on Fear and Death
And the Breaking of the Levy
is the Tolling of the Bell
that draws the Kingfish back to Earth
from his Kingdom down in Hell

06 Sep 05 - 11:49 PM (#1558185)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

LEJ, Welcome back, man. We have surely missed you.


06 Sep 05 - 11:54 PM (#1558188)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Sorry I had to re-appear with that dark little rhyme, but it's been lurking in my brain since the Hurricane did its work. Thanks for giving me a place to take it, A.

07 Sep 05 - 09:32 AM (#1558439)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jeri

LEJ, I seem to remember something about you writing a book. When it's puublished, I hope you tell us. I'd like to read it very much.

Between Breaths

The world breathes in and grows full.
Ripe with life and love and inspiration, it dances and shimmers and sings.
It dreams of great things,
And it holds its breath because it doesn't want to go back to the way it was
But it does because it must --
Nothing can remain that full forever
The world breathes out
The stretched out skin of a once greater thing goes slack
It now knows emptiness and regret
Death rides the exhaled breath
It ravages those left behind
It takes and will never give back
The answer to the question "what's next" doesn't matter to those who remain
"What's next" for them is another day in a world without love or inspiration
A world with an empty, used up skin and memories of fullness
And memories of breathing in and trying to hold onto that rich air, and losing it.
Those left behind want that one breath back,
And so the world, for them, does not breathe,
But waits...

Not to take another breath, but to want to.

23 Sep 05 - 11:10 PM (#1569650)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

On The Birth of Poet

He stares down at the empty white spaces
Bordered with light blue lines
Armed with the weapon of his choice
Black gel pen held in his writing hand,
Ready to strike.
He contemplates the laws of his kind.
The laws of rhyme, metre, and verse,
But he is a wild sort,
Ready to blatantly disregard such edicts,
The mandates set down by his forebears
Centuries before.
His hand darts forward, striking the blank page
Packing the barren arena
With tightly curved letters and words
Each meticulously placed in its designated abode
Sometimes exploring outside the boundaries
Into the unexplored vastness of
Of the writer's vacant white egotism,
And then his hunger is sated
For a few sweet jerks of the clock's hands
As he stares at the result of his labour
The phrases melt into cadence and he smiles
He smiles at the adulations he will receive
His transformation into utter arrogance is complete.
He is now a translator of emotion and truth
A writer for all the people to hold high
Revered by the teachers, detested by students
He is now a poet.


09 Jul 06 - 12:57 PM (#1779532)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Too long, too long, this thread so fallow lay,
So I shall share a verse I wrote today:

In Praise of Verse, and Iambs, Grouped by Five

Quite oft, I've heard the Philistines complain:
"Iambic verse is diffecult to learn--
Its fancy language taxes my poor brain!
Prosaic speach is best, when it's your turn."

Their puzzlement is hard to understand.
Iambic rhythm pulses through the heart,
And if they'd count the fingers on one hand,
They'd feel the language clicking, part by part.

It's prose that is a random, clutterd, mess.
How many words to choose from? What's the count?
(Reminds me of this office, I confess)--
A shifting heap that's harder to surmount.

I'll versify my speeches all the time
(Though if for business, I will skip the rhyme).

09 Jul 06 - 03:06 PM (#1779621)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Well crafted, Capriu!


09 Jul 06 - 08:16 PM (#1779847)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

To Kathryn Ann

I had seen one
Junked out
The name already discarded,
The trim and upholstery ripped away,
The essential mechanisms dissassembled on the bench -
For practice -
The parts too worn to be reused;
Herein is wisdom:
To know for Truth,
No longer fact alone,
That each of us is mortal,
Drawing to an end.

A year passed by,
And I was given this gift:
To be present
In a beginning,
With God,
And Kathryn Ann;
When hope became frail thread,
Stretched taut in human hands,
And then cried out with being
Who would have need of a name,
And of being taught it's meaning.
This too is wisdom:
There is cause for joy.

09 Jul 06 - 10:35 PM (#1779941)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

That is lovely, frogprince. Thank you for sharing it.

15 Jul 06 - 01:15 AM (#1784020)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

A Wheel of Joys

Leave me the joys of the wheel to have,
Holding the colored lights and watered winds
In mind, the touch of some caring
Friend, and the dappling air.
A bowl of well-done rice and meat;
Hearing another girl speak sweetly,
Or a fellow sing with gusto to the boys,
And other of the wheels' perplexing joys;
A sort of evening peace,
From the turning sky; just these,
Knowing they are something I may have earned;
And we may leave the wheel alone
To turn, and turn.

Given, it is a dangerous frame of mind,
Making the ordinary into ordinary rhymes;
I have seen it tried, and done, before
By innocents ignorant of a coming war,
Who never dreamed how hot the world could burn
And in a sleepy richness, slowly turned
Until they were caught by bottomless surprise
To see the wheel betray them in such wise.
But such a sleep, and such a burning,
Is in the moment and inertia of the turning.
Early or late, a burn's a burn
Easier to let the wheel alone,
To turn, and turn.

San Diego
July 14, 2006

15 Jul 06 - 01:20 AM (#1784021)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peace

Beautiful, Amos.

15 Jul 06 - 12:18 PM (#1784289)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Thank you, good Sir!

Poems are writ by fools like I;
but only Gawd can make a sky,


18 Jul 06 - 03:31 AM (#1786165)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

One Concert Moment

Tiocfaidh ar la!
She screams
Clenched fist raised towards the wooden panels of the overhead
Tiocfaidh ar la!
She howls again
Angry voice straining to be heard
Over the heavy beating of raging drums
The metallic squeals of the dancing steel stringed guitar
The steady droning of electric pipes
And the lyrical growling of the pissed off bard
Tiocfaidh ar la!
She shrieks a third time
Black Guinness in her hand
Tan foam slopping from her drunken glass
Onto a once incandescent hardwood floor
I observe as the dim ballroom lights
Trace the ebony boundaries
Of the intricate Celtic cross
Permanently sketched into the back
Of her pale freckled shoulder
Her long red hair a stormy blood soaked sea
While it rippled in the air
As she bounced her head in badly kept time
Again she cries Tiocfaidh ar la!
"Our day will come"
The tongue of a green speckled section of dirt
That has not borne the weight of her ancestors
In almost two hundred years
Again the darkened fingers of the skyward lights
Caress the twists and curves of her tattoo
She jumps in a curve right arm towards the crowd
And the illumination reveals the hypocrisy
Painted on her left shoulder
By a needle bearing skin graffiti artist
And the light bends around the crimson dyed skin
Forming an encircled five pointed star.
Unexpectedly, she catapults her half empty
Plastic cup of slate coloured stout
Towards the electrified stage
And surges forward into the crowd
Elbows flying in a bloody ritualistic dance
And disappears from my alcohol hazed vision


18 Jul 06 - 09:00 PM (#1786799)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Joe_F


I kept an eye open

Where night and day are places,

But could not see myself,

Because I was asleep

Down in the dark of the cradle.

--- Joe Fineman

||: A bank will lend you money if you can prove you don't need it. :||

18 Jul 06 - 10:33 PM (#1786857)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lil' Kiwi

I'm reading all these poems (while I'm meant to be working) and it's fantastic! Thanks everyone for your sharing :-)

I used to write lots when I was in high-school - in lieu of schoolwork of course. And recently I've rediscovered my poems and writing nature.

So without further ranting here's one I wrote a few years back. It's one of my favorites.

-=Two lovers Lie=-

The gazing eyes dance across the faces
like a game of cat and mouse

Both at last imprint
the other into the heart
The shapes that are him
she will never forget
The curves that are her
he will forever adore

Two bare bodies
pale in the moonlight
pure in the passion
perfect in the union
as they lie
close and calm

They lie
him into her
and she into him

The messy hair from a thousand caresses
The flushed faces from a thousand pleasures
they lie tied to each other

Beating hearts
thumping in the silent night
a night of such sweet surrender

Surrender of love
surrender of trust
two souls presented into final completeness
never to end
as these two lovers lie.

28 Jul 06 - 06:09 PM (#1795764)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Firecat

This just came to mind as I was gallowing in Mudchat, and thinking about all the war reports. If anyone can think of a title, please tell me!

Let me take you on a journey
To a world that never was
Where all the nations lived in peace
And nothing was ever lost

No warplanes roared through the air
No people screamed and died
No destruction was there to be seen
And no tears were cried

No hatred sentenced men to death
No terror could be found
And the only thing that could be seen
Were flowers on the ground

Now you may wonder where this is
I'm afraid I do not know
But believe me, if I did
I'd be the first to go.

30 Jul 06 - 02:26 PM (#1797051)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Civilization: The Angles

Along the road they spill – crystals and squares,
Arrogant in blocky rows.
Their brazen angles state,
"This space is owned by the Others, who are not you;
Take your Being elsewhere, and other-how."
Attention deflects, ricochets like wind, denied understanding
Of all they contain , defend, and hide.

Trees are otherwise, and some other wisdom theirs;.
With the wind, they have come to know
Only learning to dance is great,
And for this step, any being will do.
"Dances go step by step", the trees allow;
Down a longer road, in a different time, demanding
Less thought to who is in, and who outside.

01 Aug 06 - 03:13 PM (#1799070)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Subject: RE: BS: Which member could you live without !
From: Amos
Date: 31 Jul 06 - 05:52 PM

Oh, it was a vile and contentious post,
And a thread it started had no merit
From a wicked Guest with no guts or conscience,
May the wrath of Max his soul inherit.

Sure the thread grew long, then grew longer still,
But 'twas nothing made it well worth reading
Just a bunch of tripe, foolish and air-headed
May the wrath of Max their souls inherit.

Ach, these nameless trolls, may they rot in hell,
With no courage their own names to be sharing,
They are snipers all, with no wit or balls,
May the wrath of Max their souls inherit.

Kirk Glengood, Junior
Souls of the Shameless and Forgotten
Merriwether and Trollop, London, 1923

07 Aug 06 - 05:30 PM (#1803868)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Mine weigh, now, almost a pound;
In time, I guess, the first to go
Will be the connecting rings,
That link the house, the cars, the offices and doors
Of places I was known; then
The intimate teeth will lose their edge,
Forgetting what it was they were to unlock.
Finally the handles and the numbers , too, will yield to slow shocks,
And only a place in time will haunt the rust
Where once so many places came together.

But let it be, as if there were a choice—dust
Does not much care for wills and codes;
To resist the passing of keys makes little sense.
No more than the dying of locks.

20 Aug 06 - 11:01 PM (#1814797)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

From William Faulkner‚s Nobel acceptance:

I decline to accept the end of man. It is easy enough to say that man is immortal because he will endure: that when the last ding-dong of doom has clanged and faded from the last worthless rock hanging tideless in the last red and dying evening, that even then there will still be one more sound: that of his puny inexhaustible voice, still talking. I refuse to accept this. I believe that man will not merely endure: he will prevail. He is immortal, not because he alone among creatures has an inexhaustible voice, but because he has a soul, a spirit capable of compassion and sacrifice and endurance.

The poet's, the writer's, duty is to write about these things. It is his privilege to help man endure by lifting his heart, by reminding him of the courage and honor and hope and pride and compassion and pity and sacrifice which have been the glory of his past. The poet's voice need not merely be the record of man, it can be one of the props, the pillars to help him endure and prevail.



21 Aug 06 - 08:30 PM (#1815595)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Well penned, Troubador

21 Aug 06 - 08:45 PM (#1815612)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Joe_F


No, not with you or any of my kind,

But with a pair of coupling dragonflies,

Spindles gun-blue with wings of filmy black,

Will I embalm the last shreds of my mind.

Let chrevroned grasshoppers in full green dress

Parade in chaos where my body lies

To show me off, and I'll salute them back

While overflights of butterflies impress

The spies among the reeds. Oh, let me take

My leave of water striders as they row

To keep their station, court in ripples, make

Quick, bright-ringed shadows on the rock below,

And fireflies, dancing on the edge of night,

Flashing their itch against the fading light.

--- Joe Fineman

||: I wish I had never been born -- but who has such luck? Not one in ten thousand. :||

22 Aug 06 - 06:13 PM (#1816477)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Rattled Eye

The rattled eye does not agree
With things that normal vision sees
But breaks the frame.
The rattled eye, and fever-brain,
Dismiss the normal form of things
To ask why every flower sings,
And every color smells of home,
And every stone presents some broken poem.

The rattled eye informs you
That no one object can be true
Unless heard through the sea
Painted in heart-linked greens--
Yours, another's, it does not care
Knowing just that links are there.
And cataract and spalpeen, or what you will,
Are useless, as the rattled eye sees further still.

Woebegone soul, ruined by loss and pain
Is nothing to the fever-brain that cries
Back to the ruthless rattled eye
That does not care, except for asking why.

San Diego
22 August 2006

23 Aug 06 - 12:01 AM (#1816705)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


That is a very well made poem indeed; I love it.


07 Oct 06 - 01:25 PM (#1852828)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Lying Incurable

The mystic teachers, scrambling for donations, agree on one call.
The words they weave are all-insistent:
If only you would stop lying about your body
Something wonderful, and very new,
Would overcome you and un-shell you like a
Boiled egg turned out in the Universe to bounce,
Vulnerable, but at least naked, and certainly whole.

The question is whether it can even be done at all.
Because a lie breeds, casts spawn, grows eggs, multiplied, persistent,
And a true thought comes still-born, lapsing and shoddy;
They cannot survive even one of the contractions going through you.
Where is the mid-wife who would dare announce
The comings and goings of such failures in the soul?

And who would want them said? "She tried…."
Is little comfort to all those who also lied;
Who reave the borders of the body-lands,
Plundering better lies, for making stronger stands,
Off in their private places, where old fires
Are kept alive long, long and long by ancient liars.

08 Oct 06 - 08:27 AM (#1853224)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Cordwangler


Trees are such wonderful things; they grow up to the sky,
They always seem quite friendly,
And wave when I go by.

09 Oct 06 - 01:18 AM (#1853768)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Joy of Breaking

When the telephone rang, she
forgot the ceramic bowl
that held the strained carrots
in an instant, small fingers grasped the rim
held it high momentarily
then flung it Pop! like a pistol shot
instant of scattered shards and spattered orange paste
with shock-pried stare, mouth agape
he waits her reaction
Shit! The word is spat against the phone
Then his sudden gleeful laughter
Fingers that grasp for
something else to break
That a child should take
such joy in breaking
would seem to bode ill
for the man that child will be
Except that Hands are sculpted by Time
Brain is tempered and tuned
and Fingers are given to making
The clay at last
turned deliberately, fired
an Act of Slow Deliberation
An act of Change
which more slowly opens the Heart
and at last reveals the Love of Making
(should one transcend the Joy of Breaking)

09 Oct 06 - 01:33 AM (#1853771)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Another Restless Night

Another restless night
Of broken dreams
And shattered sleep
As I listen to your tranquil snores
Studying your blanket sheltered form
As it slightly shifts with each hoarse breath
Frustrated I fling back the shadow darkened covers
From my fatigued unadorned flesh
To stalk in two furious steps
To the concealed starlight framed windows
And thrust aside an insignificant fragment
Of the moon silhouetted curtains
I gape through the murky windowpane
To the silent flat across the car park
Slowly raising my eyes skyward
At these cold bleak southern stars
Watching them throb with fragile distant warmth
Straining to pierce this veil of winter
I shiver as the bumps prickle across my body
With the frosty air seeping through the glass
I push the drapes back in position
And crawl towards your sleepy bed
Kneeling over you to tenderly sweep
The plum coloured locks from your face
And kiss good night your slightly opened lips


29 Oct 06 - 04:34 PM (#1871601)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Unexplained Wheels

The violence of tires, partly a mystery,
Is quite normal. Most scientists refrain
From rash conclusion – but, it seems clear, tires are driven
By a complex system, they explain.

Endless attacks on roads, curbs and sometimes children
Is a natural phenomenon because
The complex system follows natural laws.
Heat and pressure seem to come to bear and the true
Impact of direct current flowing in careful time, too,
Is poorly understood – these sparks and magnetics whirl
And in some way define the tire's higher world
Or the governing awareness of the wheel,
Perhaps the seat of all that it can think, or feel.

In any case, in their natural sphere,
Force and erosion, and therefore, fear
Are natural concomitants of living
In ways that seldom see forgiving.

It is thought that when these details are better understood
The question of tire-violence will be solved; then, we should
Be able to cure them of their tendency to beat
Mindless and brutal, upon the sleeping street.
Finding the source of their brutal black embrace
Will make the road-world a kinder, stiller place,
Free of the screaming cries of blackened hard assault,
As soon as we learn just what it is we ought to call
The governing power, or the subtle link
That drives it – or so the experts think.


05 Jan 07 - 02:22 PM (#1927566)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ


And it was like Cassady
to go in search of Death
in the same way he came at Life
with a manic grin
and a heart full of curiosity
leaving no room for fear
tripping across weathered black railroad ties
oozing tar in the Mexican sun
kicking sparks from loose gravel
flipping a sledge hammer in the air
to count three and catch it by the handle
his powerful frame
drained by the drugs and the sleepless nights
fooling himself that his indomitable will
his Life Spirit
could face up to Death and dog her down
Calling, daring Death to come at him
and wrestle in the desert
in the magnificent Ratlands where the contrasts were clear
good/evil life/death light/shadow energy/inertia
and only Cassady and Death were party to that last episode
and he was found like Thor fallen
with his hammer beside him
his big fists doubled-up and bloodied
and a grin clenched in his face
with his clouded eyes staring
straight up into a sky as blue
as the edge of eternity

05 Jan 07 - 02:58 PM (#1927594)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Jaysus, LeeJ! Takes my breath away! Superb as ever, darlin'.

05 Jan 07 - 08:58 PM (#1927855)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


Stop, and you still the ripples.
With a finger the tangles are raveled.
The knots rot with the rope.

06 Jan 07 - 04:51 PM (#1928593)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: slowerairs


With smile that spoke of years of love
He kissed her cherished brow
Then very gently, stroked her cheek
As he remembered how
She once could dance away the night
And put them all to shame
But that was then and this was now
With only time to blame.

Now looking in those faded eyes
He knew not, why he wept
For he was hers and she was his
Yet still the secret kept
So frail was she, he could not speak
Of how he loved another
Instead, he kissed her once again
And whispered, Goodnight mother.

06 Jan 07 - 08:26 PM (#1928761)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Hawker

Wow what a thread! I have not found thid before now, MORE talent out there!
Humble offering from sunny!!!! Cornwall

If there was no music
If there was no music
What a sad world this would be
There would be no running water
No humming bumble bee
Who would wake the morning
If not the song of birds
There would be no singing
Just hollow tuneless words
Silent would be the raindrops
Tapping on the pane
The wavelets gentle murmur
No more a sad refrain
The howling wind a silence
The crowing cock would hush
No more joyous chiming
From the linnet or the thrush
No church bells brightly ringing
No cheery kettle call
No violin, no harp, no song
There'd be no sound at all.

Cheers Lucy

06 Jan 07 - 08:28 PM (#1928763)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Hawker

and a seasonal offering......

Jacky Frost
When Summers blue sky fades to grey
And swiftly ends the shortening day
When coldness takes the flowers away
Ill dance the dance of winter
Over hedges see me trip
To frost the leaf and haw and hip
To petrify each sparkling drip
And dance the dance of winter
Ill fade the roses red to white
Redress the landscape in one night
Make the cobwebs crisp and white
And herald in the winter
I'll tiptoe over lawns and trees
The water pipe I soon shall freeze
Ill bring transport to its knees
And turn all things to winter
In leafy Hollows, see me hide
I herald in the Christmas tide
Where man keeps snug by fires inside
While outside, I am winter.

Cheers Lucy

07 Jan 07 - 07:21 PM (#1929681)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Metchosin

Oh wow! This thread still gives me goosebumps.

07 Jan 07 - 10:32 PM (#1929851)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jerry Rasmussen

I are not a poet. I think that I've written a grand total of three poems in my life: two in high school under duress, and this one, after my Mother's death:

Love Is Not Like A Bicycle

Love is not like a bicycle
You can't sit on it, or ride it
It is not of the physical world

Love may be expressed through words
But words are not love
Actions speak louder than words
But actions are not love
Love is not limited by time or space
Love is omnipresent
God is love
In loving, we touch divinity

On Friday, October 13th, Mom died
But her love did not die
Neither did our love for her die

True love remains


07 Jan 07 - 11:02 PM (#1929867)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Well done, Lucy and slowerairs! And, Jerry, who better to write a poem about but your mom? Thanks, folks!

The folks I know
Would to a person say
I'll give you my love
My caring, your pain takeaway.

The friends I know
Open hearts, open minds
With gifts from above
All the same, yet different kinds.

The dearhearts I know
Give to each or to all
All kindness and care
Though none sought glory to recall.

(Bah! Haven't written a good poem in 2-3 years. Time to practise!!)

08 Jan 07 - 02:13 PM (#1930455)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Illegal Poet


"Love what lives...
fry the rest."
Like ragged gravel
poured across a gutteral rasp,
the words spilled
forcibly from his lips
as he preached to the rusting shrines,
those decaying automotive shells
which house their dust laden,
forgotten worlds.
Sometimes he referred to them
as his children,
a ragamuffin orphanage
of seasoned metal, glass and rubber,
shelved, piled -- no,
more like configured,
with a librarian's precision,
sandwiched between each other and
his memories of their era;
collated recollections
selectively inserted
here, there;
affixed, as dated license plates
'neath grills and bumpers
no designers will dare create again;
he believes,
have lost their nerve
and context.

Rabbits, lizards,
cats and birds,
a dog named Bolts...
this rabbled collection of disciples
have come,
comprise a choir of sifted souls;
their brave enlistment,
or desperate gestures chasing significance,
join them to the sacred grounds
which grow the dirt
beneath the eyeless carcasses,
broken-toothed chromium grins,
and creaking groans of squeaking rust.
These meticulous caregivers
occupy Eden's corner,
nurturing via the pat of feet,
fluttered wing
and choruses of chaotic praise,
this fragile garden.

A quite distinctive fragrance
wanders there
melting rain,
splatters icing
over every thirsty surface,
activates a secret scent
which fills his nostrils,
with... imagination;
as freshened soil and weeds
enhance the fleeting
prospect of those shiny,
momentarily reborn
painted metal skins;
which in that greying light
lose blemish, dent and sorrow;
unmasking lost personas.

Upon occasion he
does settle gently still upon
a dustly aromatic
cushioned seat inside some chosen craft
and sometimes
starry depths
through glassless windshields,
the moonbeam-laden dashboard,
and is comforted
by those white-blue reflections
dancing across such glorious
art-deccoed landscapes
stretched inside from door to door.
As he fingers silver buttons,
rotates dials,
remnants of
the last of all the real
sometimes he
allows himself
to hear a greater Tune
which enters slowly,
through open, hanging door;
almost audible,
the rich wrapped groan,
chorded moans,
raptured tones
of cello,
and lonely plays

Washing through the car,
it effortlessly wraps
him in the blanket
of a God
who apparently,
pays attention.


24 Jan 07 - 09:16 PM (#1947227)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


The gas tank when low, the coffee-maker, are easy --
Filled up again when, burned away in cells and in cylinders,
They are tapped out. Not many moments to be ready
For a new morning and another run down to work, up to home,
Over to her place, no?
The heart, now, fills and empties on another map of things,
And flies furthest when nearly empty, stays home when full,
And breaks untapped and unheard. Mornings
Are not so easy, but when filled up a new one can be made,
Even the moon is not too far.

01 Mar 07 - 11:26 PM (#1983508)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Concert

The noisy public house grows silent as her fingers gently stroke the strings of her lap dulcimer, fondling each fret to create every note. The music reaches its fingers out to grab and caress the listeners as they sit, entranced eyes gazing up at her face. Once in a while, they they flicker to her hands in a vain attempt to understand her magic. She smiles inwardly as she watches the audience and the first words of the song are tasted upon her tongue, escaping passed her moving lips. She closes her eyes as the hungry words transport her back to burned out castles long since ground to dust. She can smell the blood of murders centuries old, the smoke of battlefields now overgrown, and the sweat of lovers whose names have long been forgotten. Her words fall faint, her fingers slowly grow still, and she hears the thunder as the gathered multitude roars in adoration. Her eyes open and finds she is on the stage once more.


01 Mar 07 - 11:36 PM (#1983513)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

The Highway of Tears (I heard the owl calling out my name)

By the side of a lonely highway

Where the tall pines bend and sway

Where the raven spins on a cold north wind

And the owl spends his day.

While the snow falls all around me

And time drifts slowly by

I turn my eyes to the cold grey skies then I hear my mother cry.

Can't you hear me cry? can't you hear me cry? Oh Mother can't you hear me cry?

And I'm sure I saw my sister

Some time in the early morn.

She came to me but she couldn't see me

Standing here alone.

And she seemed to look right through me

Though her eyes were open wide.

Then she turned around looking down on the ground and walked to the other side.

On the other side, On the other side, Oh Sister I'm on the other side.

And I wonder Do they miss me?

Do they think I'm doing well?

Does my brother know how I love him so

Or can he really tell?

Then somewhere in the distance

At the closing of the day

If the wind is right, in the failing light I can hear my Brother pray.

Can't you hear me pray? Can't you hear me pray? Oh Brother can't you hear me pray?

In the shadow of the evening

When the moon comes over the hill

I stand alone, chilled to the bone

And I know I always will.

Then morning comes around again

It always seems the same

My father's near I can almost hear him calling out my name

Calling out my name, Calling out my name, I can hear my Father calling out my name.

It's a long time now since I heard the owl, calling out my name.

Calling out my name, Calling out my name, I heard the owl calling out my name.

02 Mar 07 - 04:18 AM (#1983616)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Hawker

Jimn Lad, that is beautiful, have you set it to music? it feels like a song
Cheers, Lucy

02 Mar 07 - 08:46 PM (#1984498)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


Think of it as evolution in action:
Nature cares nothing for your introspection.
She has far cruder tastes in vivisection,
Which don't give either of you satisfaction.

Hegel be hanged! It's not a contradiction.
Think of it as evolution in action:
Call it a conflict or a counteraction,
Collisions needed for lubricious friction.

It's lunchtime. Stuff your mouth with mame-lokshn
And feel your paunch expand with each contraction.
Think of it as evolution in action.
Don't giggle, or you'll spew the whole concoction.

And if you find the only sure distraction
Leads first to rage and then to self-destruction,
Take comfort in the obvious deduction:
Think of it as evolution in action.

03 Mar 07 - 12:17 PM (#1985022)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: black walnut


Sitting alone
With you over there and your cool glass of wine
Nothing to talk about
Nothing to ask
So I stare out the window
At the warm blanket of snow
And the sky is a bird
And the feathers fall
like the telling of stories.

Held and displayed
By untouchable walls
Icicles of blue-rooted light
Hang frozen on dead wood.

I stand and walk
Increasing the space between two
Nothing to say
Nothing at all
So I lay down this sweater
On the lap of the tall chair
By the back door
And tiptoe outside
to my turned-down bed.

(c)2001 D. Carroll

03 Mar 07 - 01:08 PM (#1985046)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

I will, Hawker. Still, I'd rather someone less "Celtic" did that to it too!

03 Mar 07 - 01:43 PM (#1985082)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

Where's the right place to deposit some of my songs?

03 Mar 07 - 01:44 PM (#1985086)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Hawker

On a CD?
;0) Lucy

03 Mar 07 - 01:46 PM (#1985087)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

Heh, heh! You're too quick!

03 Mar 07 - 01:57 PM (#1985097)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: AJR

two flowers
1 Her excellency the High Commissioner
picked dandelions for her silver vase
not knowing they were only weeds
knowing only they were strong, slender. sun-golden.
We sneered

2 in the black muzzle of my Mauser
she planted her red rose
saying "peace, peace"
Nor knowing my gun is my manhood
knowing only her soft superficial certainties.
I shot her

(inspired by two newsitems. the first after the first Indian high commissioner had arrived, the second on a university campus in USA in 1968}

03 Mar 07 - 05:01 PM (#1985220)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

So where on Mudcat does one place song lyrics which are already deposited on a CD somewhere?

03 Mar 07 - 05:15 PM (#1985226)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Jim Lad, one usually would start a "LYR ADD" thread for each individual song, with lyrics, etc. listed. Or, in the case of a CD, maybe a single thread for the CD, with each song listed in a separate posting, with the appropriate info in the heading of that posting, i.e. "LYD ADD - Name of Song and Artist." That would probably be the best thing to do, one thread for the whole CD with each song listed.

03 Mar 07 - 05:27 PM (#1985234)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

Always looking after folks, Kat. Put it on my tab.

03 Mar 07 - 05:48 PM (#1985243)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bee

Abandoned Farmhouse

Nobody lives here anymore
25 years ago she left
To live with her widowed sister
- Two old women with no old men
To look after anymore.

Nobody wanted the farm
Couldn't make a living
And the girls went to the City
Neighbour didn't need the hay that year
The barn long gone.

She took a last look around
Walked out the front door and turned the key
Slipped it in her purse, she couldn't tell why
Stepped away down the two flat stone stairs
Between the lilacs and the daylily beds.

In a hot dry summer
I found her house
Hidden in the spruce and fir that took the hayfields
Saw the barn foundation, a hollow full of brambles
Ringed with wild cherry and leaning apple trees.

The lilacs were blooming
Their scent was heavy around me
A stranger peering into the dark front hall
The peeling blue-painted door's still locked
A yellow rag of lace rotting in its window.

I'm a country woman, though
I know to walk around
Past the stone well
To the never-locked backdoor
Straight into her cool dim kitchen.

Flowered worn linoleum growing moss
Cluster flies on the dusty window sills
Chipped and rusting cast-iron sink in the corner
And I'm thinking of the dishes she did up
And the babies she washed there.

03 Mar 07 - 05:53 PM (#1985249)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

You took me there.

03 Mar 07 - 06:18 PM (#1985274)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bee

Thank you, Jimlad. Took a bit of courage to put it up. Wrote it about five years ago, never showed it to anyone.

03 Mar 07 - 06:46 PM (#1985299)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

I followed you from the flat stone stairs. You got me in the eyes with some shrubbery as I followed you round to the back door. Got to watch that when you're breaking trail, you know!

03 Mar 07 - 07:59 PM (#1985360)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Beautiful, Bee! It reminded me of a spoken piece by Jean Mackie, which Jean Redpath has on a CD. There's a personal note from her (Redpath) and the words to it on THIS THREAD. They both evoke along ago time and memories. Lucky us that you shared it!

Jim Lad, they didn't used to call me "Mamakat" for nothing.:-) I meant to tell you I love your poem, too...should be a song, I agree!

To late I've come to tell you
To late for love to flourish
The bairns all gone from the land now
The old too frail for gathering.

Once up and down the valley
The sounds of work rang out
Clearly spelling the prosperity
Of all who lived and loved.

To late, now, for any renewal
To late to lift your brow
To start from old which is not there
To late to even care.

(not sure where that came from! Must be channelling some sad old soul.)

03 Mar 07 - 08:18 PM (#1985371)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

To late or not to late, that is the question....

Very nice images, all of you!


03 Mar 07 - 09:15 PM (#1985412)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bee

Kat, thanks for steering me to that Ritchie piece - it is lovely.

03 Mar 07 - 11:54 PM (#1985492)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Always like to see a little more spun on this thread. Yes, Jim Lad, that one so begs to be sung. And Bee, I've explored that same old house several times, in several states many miles apart; you gave me chills.

03 Mar 07 - 11:57 PM (#1985497)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Not exactly a poem but here is one.

The Silent Watcher

The plastic tree stood next to the seemingly empty chair, reaching out to provide her ghostly form shade. The tiny green and yellow leaves swayed with each cool breath of the air conditioner, whispering inaudible songs into her ears. She sat and listened as she had for the last twenty years.
She looked around the room, empty and barren but for the chairs, couch and coffee table organised almost haphazardly around the muted television set. She was waiting for them to come home, yearning to watch over them again, guarding them with her love. The tree told her all that has been happening to them since she left. Since she died, she reminds herself. It told her of the birth of her great grandchildren, now four and five and the deaths of her two sons. She wished she could hold the young ones in her arms, on her lap, but of course she could not. At least she could murmer songs to them as they slept, silent and helpless in the dark. She sat and listened to the tree, as it sang in harmony with the cool music of the A/C, tapping her foot onto the shining hardwood floor as she succumbed to the memories of her life, long over,some sad, some happy, but none of it would she ever change. Suddenly she heard the footsteps creaking and stomping across the floor, closer and closer. The air conditioner stopped and the tree grew quiet. However, it did not matter, not really. They were home. She was happy.


04 Mar 07 - 08:21 PM (#1986343)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Drums on Television

I overheard another boy
in gym class say
"he" was shot in Texas
not knowing who they spoke of
and later the intercom
Principle Williams said "Listen,
you'll hear a bit of history"
and Walter Cronkite told my English class
The President was dead
Crouching on the street corner
Lenny and I folded the papers tight
the headlines leaving our fingertips
smudged in black
A man walked by
and asked us what we thought
about the assassination
I remember Lenny and I looked at each other
burst into raucous laughter
too jaded at 12 to feel pain
at a great man's death
And my parents speaking in undertones
Grandparents coming to town
as if Death had visited our own family
Down that road the plumed horses
The caissons
The White Horse riderless
Down that road they took him
as they have taken my grandparents
Principle Williams, my parents
until in my mind those days, too, lie entombed
painted in wet gray tones
framed in barren branches
but most of all
at the dark end of my twelfth year
there was pumped into my soul the cadence of drums
that for hours on end beat from televisions

05 Mar 07 - 02:54 AM (#1986574)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

'Come walk with me, come talk with me'
is what you said to me
When, way back, once upon a time
you stilled my urge to flee

I'd been alone through many years
watched seasons rolling by
Encased my heart in sheets of ice
Once bitten and twice shy

I'd reinforced this heart of mine
to see in love but pain
You thawed my heart and made me want
to trust in love again

I took a leap of faith with you
I left my native land
I reached towards an outstretched hand
A strange, yet well-known man

You caught me, held me, loved me sweet
that sunny autumn morn
Then held me gently through my sleep
I felt as if reborn

But things were catching up with you
The call of home held sway
You told me then you'd thought again
you would no longer stray

You chose to walk that well-trod path
and leave me standing there
'I'll miss you' were your parting words
My dreams were but of air

Now all I have is memories
is longing, tears and pain
Believe me, love, I wish you luck
- wish I dared love again

05 Mar 07 - 02:03 PM (#1987231)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: black walnut

That's gorgeous, and soulful, LD. Wow.

05 Mar 07 - 02:14 PM (#1987240)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

LD just did a mind job on me! Heartfelt. Thank you.

05 Mar 07 - 06:32 PM (#1987519)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,slowerairs

Towards Eternity

Against all odds the creature stands
Recording deeds of men
Those hidden from all human eyes
Revealed with strokes of pen

The list is never ending for
The wrongs of men are great
Take heed and change those evil ways
Before it is too late.

For when at last we leave this life
As darkness takes our sight
Let each one search his soul and ask
What did the creature write?

05 Mar 07 - 06:37 PM (#1987524)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

What beautiful, talented writers you all are.

LeeJdarlin'...a resonance struck the Me who remembers that day, too. Haunting still those of us who were. Thanks for the beauty of your words.

05 Mar 07 - 08:41 PM (#1987621)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Always some flakes rise
but it is correct to say
The snow is falling.

07 Mar 07 - 04:30 AM (#1989182)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Thank you, I'm glad you liked my poem. It means a lot to me.

There are many nice poems in here. I like reading them.

07 Mar 07 - 06:44 PM (#1990021)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,slowerairs


Take care, my dearest love, for time may rob

Thy loving eyes of beauty, the heart of peace

Remember dearest, this our only night

Oh sad are they, denied their right to love.

Hasten you now my love, here comes the day

The clock it chimes, for dawn is drawing near

Farewell my love, forever let this be

My precious night, that I once shared with thee.

07 Mar 07 - 07:57 PM (#1990083)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

Slowerairs: Says a lot and yet leaves so much to the imagination. I can relate to this one.


08 Mar 07 - 05:33 PM (#1990872)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: slowerairs

Many thanks Jim Lad. Nice to know, someone is out there.

08 Mar 07 - 05:59 PM (#1990883)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

I'm not "Out There" you know.
I'm just shy.

16 Mar 07 - 10:10 PM (#1999230)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

In memoriam for Cathy-Cat, who sang folk-songs from many countries:

Gone From My Sight

I am standing upon the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails
to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.

She is an object of beauty and strength.
I stand and watch her until at length
she hangs like a speck of white cloud
just where the sea and sky come
to mingle with each other.

Then, someone at my side says;
"There, she is gone!"
"Gone where?"
Gone from my sight. That is all.

She is just as large in mast and hull
and spar as she was when she left my side
and she is just as able to bear her
load of living freight to her destined port.

Her diminished size is in me, not in her.
And just at the moment when someone
at my side says, "There, she is gone!"

There are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad

"Here she comes!"

And that is dying.

by Henry Van Dyke, a 19th Century clergyman, educator, poet, and religious writer.

17 Mar 07 - 08:46 PM (#1999842)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,cmt49

Sorry about komputeral ineptitood. Here's one for the cat lovers:

( To be whispered into the ear of a black cat.)

Birds with no wings.
Smiling mice caress your claws
my silent one,
my midnight.
Moons of polished amber
hold the ages of dark knowledge
in your eyes.
Essence of sensual pride,
I shall dream for you
a bath of curling ermine.
Milk of Isis to your possessing tongue,
my love,
my black remembrance of Egypt.

Birds with no wings....

19 Jun 07 - 12:23 AM (#2080710)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Haiku for Amos

The people come here unclothed
and take what they leave.
is the best thread

19 Jun 07 - 02:00 AM (#2080733)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Letter to Jacinta

I use to believe I hated Christmas most of all the dreaded lonesome holidays, as I imagined you waking up that summer morning with the early sun oozing hot warnings of the coming heat through the Queensland sky, small blue eyes glistening as you squealed and laughed, blonde hair bouncing with each giggling jump, with childish anticipation at the wrapped presents mounted below the plastic tree. But now, I realise it is Father's Day, whether it be in June or September, that drives the dagger home through my already shattered heart as I imagine scenes of what might have been. Your small gentle arms wrapped tightly around my throat, as you leap into my eager arms and yell out, "Daddy!" when I slowly open the door after a long tired day at work. You lying in your bed, smiling at playful dreams of doggies, lavender flowers, and koala bears, as I kneel down, softly brush the yellow strands of hair from your face, and lay my lips on your warm sweet forehead after a late night at the pub writing. You sitting in my lap still as a little girl could be, listening to me read you poetry, either my own, or by those whose footsteps I follow, including that sweet sad poem you were named for, or I would regale you with tales of knights and dragons, dwarves and elves, the heroic deeds of Fionn mac Cumhaill and Cu Chullainn, or my own travels and adventures in Tir na nOg and my years spent with the sidhe. Hearing your Australian voice whisper, "I love you, Daddy" as you caress the red fur on my face with your loving lips with a loud and decisive smack. I gaze at your pictures and my heart aches as I wonder, am I just an abstract figure in a hazy photograph, which you are told is your daddy? A strange American voice over the telephone telling you "I Love you, Jacinta"? A mere ghost at the edge of your tiny existence as formless as the morning mist? What am I to you? Know this, Jacinta, I will always love you and hold you tightly in my heart, and that although I may not be standing beside you or holding you tightly to my breast, softly singing, soothing your hurts and fears, that I will still be there. Slan go foill, a chuisle mo chroi. See you in my dreams.


19 Jun 07 - 08:08 AM (#2080925)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Ythanside


Poets all should have long hair,
Dark haunted eyes and broken hearts,
Should languish long in dark despair,
Recording pain and sorrow's darts.

'Suffering', their watchword be;
Consumptive, with dry wracking cough,
Self-crucified for you and me
'Til, premature, they're carried off.

Thus their gifted lines are wrought,
That touch our souls and make us weep,
Their lofty station dearly bought-
Now vile usurpers on them creep.

These upstarts in their pinstripe suits
With simple style create distress;
Their lines, as soft as hobnailed boots,
That all begin 'Dear Sir, unless......!'

(Must have been bill-paying time when I cobbled this together some 30 years ago) :-D

19 Jun 07 - 12:14 PM (#2081171)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Thanks. I am touchéd. :D

Keep up the excellent work, you-all!


19 Jun 07 - 12:38 PM (#2081199)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jim Lad

Amergin: What a gift you have in your writing. I have to let your letter run its course before moving on to Ythanside's contribution. That only happens once in a while.

19 Jun 07 - 01:41 PM (#2081260)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing


Ythanside, well done!

My daughter called me the other night to ask me to write a poem for her friend whose almost one year old baby drowned while having a bath. She was a beautiful little baby, two months premature with some problems but growing and bring smiles to everyone. She was in her bath seat when the mom turned away to get a towel and turned back to find her drowned.

I did not know her or my daughter's friend, but I said I'd give it a try. I sent the following to the friend and her seven year old son who loved his baby sister. Apparently it hit the spot and I am grateful.

Jasmyn, little Jasmyn,
Your Spirit shines so bright.
You brought us Love and Beauty
Then left too early in the night.

Jasmyn, little Jasmyn
Your brother loves you so.
Please help him understand
Just why you had to go.

Jasmyn, beautiful Jasmyn,
Be safe, be well, be free
Our lives you touched forever
May we know Peace, let it be.

19 Jun 07 - 03:21 PM (#2081332)
Subject: Lyr Add: A SONG: I once met the poet (Bob Clayton)
From: GUEST,Songster Bob

I don't know where this came from, though I did meet a poet in a Metro station once, and took it from there.        

A Song

I once met the poet in the subway station
(I'd seen him before, so I knew him, you see).
He was standing in line for his daily blues ration,
The same as the other commuters like me.
Packed into the cars, we roared 'neath the earth
Ignoring the people around where we sat,
When the poet fixed me with an eye full of mirth
And sang me the song of the hole in his hat.

I once met a busker while mailing a letter;
I tipped him a quarter and gave him a nod,
And allowed as how he could play so much better
Than most of the other street buskers, by God!
He played on his fife for all he was worth,
Depending on coins in the cup where he sat,
So, fixing me with an eye full of mirth,
Played me the song of the hole in his hat.

So, if you happen to see me someplace
(Now that you've met me, you'll know me, you see),
Don't be surprised by the look on my face,
For poets are known to be somewhat like me.
I may talk about football, or music, or news;
I well may debate the place of the cat,
When, suddenly struck by my musical muse,
I might sing you the song of the hole in my hat!

© 1991, Bob Clayton, Silver Spring, MD

19 Jun 07 - 11:20 PM (#2081774)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Kat, simple and sweet.

cmt, that says much about the nature of the cat, a mystery sleeping on the door mat.

11 Oct 07 - 07:00 PM (#2169194)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Secretly Phoning Out Hate

I -- who ride the swallow's back,
Whooping through the trees and swooping the green lawned limbs --
Who breathes the chill mist that shocks maiden-nipples in the sun's
first hour--
Who sucks the sea-foam from the storm-mouth, drunk to live,
And blinks the sun's own fire in a glance – I, still,
Cannot walk but uneasy past the eyes of the hate in churches. I
Flinch to taste the bitter strings that foul the large halls of man-doing.
What does the tide-maker rhythm feel, falling from the moon into the
The day-baking fire hand that lights the screaming dark boulevard
from Sun to Earth?
Nothing as mean as one good ugly soul,
Daring only to reform others in the night,
Secretly phoning out,
Phoning out the hate.

11 Oct 07 - 09:17 PM (#2169260)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Spontaneous symmetry-breaking,
exits from loops,
limiting processes making
infs go to sups,
a little irritable tissue,
pairwise unlinked rings --
a friend will wish you
all those good things.

12 Oct 07 - 06:00 PM (#2169882)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Widening Circle

Two friends met
Shared lives and loves
Spread their net
Cast wide and low.

Two friends saw
An open life
Torn and raw
They held it close.

Two friends held
The hurt one
'til love's dealt
Healing was done.

Three friends met...

12 Apr 08 - 03:58 PM (#2313844)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Memory Ahead

Stepping off the curb, scaring the random pigeon
Approaching a conversation in an early city evening,
Do you draw the face, the tremble of the fingers, in his colors?
Choose the palette for pain to seep down, after leaving?

Is it a fade, from grays to black,
Or brilliant in real incandescen restaurant hues?
How will it seem, when it comes back,
Some day, when you are shopping for new shoes,
Or cleaning up after a dinner,
Happy with remarks about dessert,
And how you look (younger; thinner).

Then will the colors intrude, answering some subtle sign?
Whites supplanted with that faded low-
Light tinge of pigeon-gray
And fear in chiaroscuro?
And was this some spiritual design,
Mapping a way across the street,
With older shoes, on earlier feet?

A step across the line dividing you
From infinite changes and reminding
Is a fine grained memory Ð too fine
To built a public mind upon, though true.
But, when memoryÕs moment clocks in, blinding Ð
The face, and trembling fingers, in their native colors.

16 Jul 08 - 05:10 PM (#2390946)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Stone and Moss

Both time and timelessness are easy errors
To an eye bewildered,
And a mind too crowded,
Or ears betrayed by sounds.

Sapphire beginnings; hard
Ends of gold, feverish
Days of penitence, shivered
By hours made too loud
For any heart to arise.

In this maddened vise
Between each minute and its loss
Nothing is truly seen
Neither the cold stone nor the soft moss.

16 Jul 08 - 05:28 PM (#2390961)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Megan L

In 1983 my new husband and I stood in a small churchyard in Wales looking sadly at a row of shiny gravestones each had the age of the young man each one had been on the Galahad. I remembered thinking that somewhere in Argentina someone could be standing beside a row of graves or a memorial for equally young lads from the Belgrano.

War dead

See my name all you who pass by
As you are now so once was I.
I was a son whose mother wept
I was the husband whose wife kept
A light in the window lest I should come
To find my way once more back home.
I was the brother whose sisters tears
shall wash my stone
I was the lover who will not come
the one who left you here alone.
I am your love
the memory that will not die
My name it matters not anymore
Rhys or Ramone we are the same
In death, a memory and nothing more


16 Jul 08 - 06:42 PM (#2390999)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Even though the clouds may fly,
On high on such a beauteous day.
Tis not that I will be out there,
I'll be on Mudcat, far away.

16 Jul 08 - 08:27 PM (#2391045)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Me and Don

By the convenience store he sat
his feet propped on rusted breast plate
inverted helmet inviting help.
"The windmills of my mind" he sighed
"are by my own intellect o'erthrown!"
Inspired by irony I smiled and said
"And you find yourself here alas
o Knight of the Tarnished Mirrors
in the shadow of a slain dragon
transformed by wizards into the guise of a dumpster"
He only stared in silence
and so I walked away
until his choked whisper split the silence

17 Jul 08 - 12:10 AM (#2391115)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Oh, Lonsesome, ya done caught me off guard with that last line. Big grin, but a torn heart, too.


17 Jul 08 - 03:18 PM (#2391651)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Me, too, LeeJ. Inspired and so poignant!

18 Jul 08 - 04:43 AM (#2391882)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jay777

As a teenager in the late 60s, I lived near USAF Greenham Common. My family befriended many of the servicemen based there. This poem was written by one of them, whilst he was serving in Vietnam. He went back there, and we never saw or heard of him again. I thought it deserved a wider airing.

AMMO by AFC 18756330 Ronald Brown, 1969

I work with bombs both day and night,
And stand and shake with awful fright.
My past is short, my future's bleak,
I'll never last another week.
My friends are dead or dying fast,
I don't know how long my luck will last.
Death may come in several ways,
From gas or bombs with short delays,
There's Sarin gas or TNT,
Or fragment bombs to murder me.
They say that nerve gas works just great,
Five short minutes and it's too late,
Of course blood gas isn't so fast,
Fifteen minutes you can last,
There's white phospherous and thermate too,
They just sear and burn holes in you.
You know that you are bound to lose,
So you get a bottle and start to booze.
You drink all day and drink all night,
You go on duty still half tight.
If the bombs don't do it, just wait and see,

07 Sep 08 - 09:07 PM (#2433728)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Aged Dust

Shattered, without hope in the wind,
Whirling where the world's face ends
Itself coldly ended without power of naming
Any future, or caring how to name -- knowing
That one and another are not preferred
But are same. Not even glumness shadows
The lost decision from which complete indifference seems
Eminently respectable.

And fire not even a memory to the face, and the world's
Face so over-remembered, it is a loss to try
To tell one from another past, or pry futures apart.
Paint it, and it stays painted; deny, and it will
Oblige by disappearing. Call it and it will be.
Be one with it and it will color you so gray
That your name will be arbitrary and your
Face vanish in the world.

Fight it and it will oblige endlessly. These
Are the molecules that will not disperse nor harden but
Will endlessly prove the barren ice of time.
How it stretches into the horizon, telling nothing because
Nothing is.

This is the heart of dying, hell
Beyond the hope of measure, f
For space is denied. But,
What mastery within! To make so little from so much,
To so completely nullify, must be the handiwork
Of a truly great machine.

So dust has its master, and if you only
Congratulate him, he will withdraw,
Sated with your precious admiration.
You who command admiration command all things
And dust's dry dominion dwindles to your light.

07 Sep 08 - 09:21 PM (#2433741)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Waves Over the Transatlantic Cable

Waves in the green dark rising hammer
The clamor of hot continents to be still
Tendering the fierce land-fires rising until
They can unbroken go, new hard shores surprising

Mountains engorged and foam-faces running
Force and force and force the hard-rock edges
Aiming ferociously at the harbor seals sunning
On the marker buoy's ledges.

Small hums under the great quietude
Tease the green-water hard thrust
Pricking with intent and rude
Intrusions, unknowing, unjust.

The wires speak their messages unknowing
That they communicate; the deep waters
Know from all sides, containing thought itself,
Sending no message but being.

The sub-sea mountains listen, and the cables drape the crags and pass by to
another kind of place.
The one needs no telling; the other must never know.
Or all kinds of doors will open and the loops of space itself
Break in the rush of green, green waters.

07 Sep 08 - 11:20 PM (#2433786)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

I found this poem in some papers. I wrote it when I was 22. I had a strong urge to edit it, but resisted.

An old man stumbled through the door
his overcoat gray and solemn December
Stark against the glassed-out sunlight
he fumbled, spoke with a voice like cracked marble
"My name is O.L. Brown. I sell matches."
He dropped a brown suitcase like a basket of bricks
the leather scratched and scarred with years of layered sweat-
the young man's nervous sweat in buffed-brass waiting rooms
the old man's thin moan of beaded sweat
mapping the wrinkles on his face with moisture
and the dust of the road.
"35 years in the Advertising Game"
he winked with a salesman's rude charm
"My matches have carried names of men great and small
into the pants pockets of America.
My matches have shouted manure to hog farmers-
have sung silver against the cigarettes of rich men.
They have told barroom secrets to distrustful wives
they have flamed for seven men-all strangers.
For 35 years they have flashed
in the cupped hands of nameless people.
For 35 years they have told stories to chance eyes.
For 35 years they have kept me from the cold."
He smiled and held out a crooked hand.
Small flames glowed behind his eyes.
I reached out to take his hand.
A matchbook fell with a whisper into my palm.
O.L. Brown
35 Years in Matches

07 Sep 08 - 11:32 PM (#2433788)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Love it, LeeJ, esp. as I used to sell specialty ad products just like that!**bg**

A friend came to visit.
In the middle of the night
She was just there.

I heard her first on the phone
After months of no calls, nothing
I said, I cannot believe it is you!

She said, I've crossed over.
I gasped with sorrow, cried her name.
No, no, it's okay, she said, it's really nice!

There we were in the middle of the night
In a room of high ceiling, warm wood
Singing, her strumming, a session of our own.

I realised there were others there, singing, too
Playing, too, a full session which filled me with joy
And, wonder that it was there in my home, though not my home.

How could this be, in the middle of the night
A stranger on the phone, then known, then here?
A dream, precognition, or a visitation?

copyright 2008 Kat LaFrance

08 Sep 08 - 06:03 AM (#2433893)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

With the romani love of music , I thought id just place this old romany poem, first in romany then in english.
Miro dadus miro jin,
miro daia durogilo;
miro pireni sar o iouzers jell.
bor miro ker no,
yeckoro tu mi bosh,
miro mi yeckoro bor.
My father I have never known
My mothers long since gone
My sweetheart with the flowers go
of friends i have none,
only you my violin
are my only friend.
A sad tale relevant today, it shows that many romanys who like me have no KNOWN family left, feel that they really dont have any friends wether that is true or not is debateable, I have many friends, all romas who have seen me through some very bad and sad times, but sadly there are times that as many people do , the feeling of being alone tend to overwhelm.
Being of romany decent i know the real world of exclusion from mainstream life. Yes we are a race apart but since the first arrival of the roma folk in the 14 1500s there has always been suspicion and fear of the unknown, but only last week i was called a dirty pikey, by a shop keeper, because i had tied my horse to a lamp post as i went in to buy a packet of fags, had i pulled up in my car and parked in the same place would he have said anything?, but because i was taking the horse and trap out, he did, so what do i think ?
sorry got on me soap box again. oops.

08 Sep 08 - 10:12 AM (#2434069)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I am sorry you have to endure such targeting, Romany man. I would think, by now, that that sort of categorical insult was behind us, buit this appears to be disappointingly untrue.


08 Sep 08 - 12:57 PM (#2434250)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Im used to it amos, life goes on, it will never stop, it happens daily, eventually you get either numb or bitter, i choose the middle road , ie dont hear it as i cant fight it.

08 Sep 08 - 07:45 PM (#2434691)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

romany man, you might be interested in a few threads including this one: Origins: Traveller and Romany Influence on Trad. If you put "romany" in the search box at the top of the thread titles and use teh drop down box to set the date to "All" there are a few others. Similarly, if you use other words such as "romani, roman, etc." there are a few others, some contentious. Welcome to the Mudcat!


09 Sep 08 - 05:17 AM (#2434959)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Thanks, some of the threads go way over my head with all the bitching and psuedo racism ie go to 5000 morris dancers, oh my god.
ive chosen to drop nthat thread as its just tooooooooo much, i have and use the word loosely "suffered" all my life and im knocking on a bit, 3 major breakdowns, spells in looney bin, etc but hey im still here fighting the corner, love our music though we tend to keep it to ourselves, ive bought so called gypsy music cds and laughed at the obvious piss takes that the producers and non gypsy folk dont realise, still life goes on, just wish i still had the stopping places and work we used to have. Theres always a bye law that says no stopping and another that says no travelling, so good bye to the thirty foot trailer, in the words of the song. see ya

09 Sep 08 - 09:54 AM (#2435146)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Four days it took to get to the tan, (camp)
Here to farm for to work,
Money to earn, to get food for the pan,
Not known to us the gavvers (police, etc) did lurk.

Vardos set tilts tied tight,
camp fires burning heating the pani (water)
Strong tea, an cheeseon bread will have to see us right,
By morns rising to fields we'd go just like an army.

The night was cold, the moon she was full, sitting high in the sky,
little we knew how the day it would start,
as sun replaced moon, they raided the tan, ol' joe the first to die,
The gavvers cosh it hit him hard, the skull it did part.

the waggons did burn the chavvs (children) they did run,
the gavvers the council, the locals, didnt care for any,
Pain and fear it ruled the day, many did die at the end of a gun,
The new laws were in, no stopping it says, not even allowed to earn a penny.

The travelling day gone , the people are next,
settle you will, the law says you must,
no land can you live on, your ways they are hex'd
where ever you go your type we wont trust.

a way of life, a culture being slowly destroyed and smashed,
we the victims sit and watch, for to stand up and fight,
would only bring quicker the time to be cashed.
who will pick up the pieces, and see our plight.

09 Sep 08 - 03:56 PM (#2435536)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

AW, jesus.

Thanks, romanyman.


09 Sep 08 - 08:36 PM (#2435771)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


The moon, a little bag of death,
shakes shit within itself above a tree:
a Spanish-rhythmed slog with every breath
insults the intellect, and me.

Now, in a ferment smug and pure,
this single buttock germinates and bursts,
spilling a hate jazz out along the sewer
of light, to taunt the common thirsts.

It's time now for a job of talk.
Why don't they fuck and bugger on the floor?
I came in case they did, so I could gawk,
and it is what they came here for.

-- June 1965, but a remembrance of undergraduate mixer dances in the 1950s

09 Sep 08 - 10:18 PM (#2435822)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Wow, Joe.

Those dances were a sore spot with me, too. I never could figure out the game very well.


10 Sep 08 - 12:14 AM (#2435863)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Joe, shocking, disturbing, maybe a trifle disgusting. Very interesting and real though.

11 Sep 08 - 07:11 AM (#2437180)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Just marks in the grass,
where the wagons sat;
Just marks in the grass,
where the horses grew fat,
Just marks in the grass,
the turf a bit higher,
Just marks in the grass,
where they had the camp fire,
Just marks in the grass,
folk stayed here you know,
Just marks in the grass,
they were forced to go,
Just marks in the grass,
Those lives they have gone
Just marks in the grass,
the bailifs my son.
just marks in the grass,
spattered with blood ,
just marks in the grass,
we will stop this flood,
Just marks in the grass,
no body will care,
Just marks in the grass,
Gone , but where ?

11 Sep 08 - 07:52 AM (#2437204)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: peregrina

that's really powerful and poignant, Romany Man.
have you thought of singing or reciting it?

12 Sep 08 - 05:55 AM (#2438164)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Nah just like to write it, the old ways are gone never to return, the younuns dot want to know us getting on a bit know the ways cant come back and are left to history, or museum peices, yeh i can still cut pegs and mend lodsa thing, but people want machines, and plastic,
our history is bastardised, our ways treated with contempt. its always "oh you are a gypsy" then they are gone. ifn you want to use it please do, there are loads more, Ken

12 Sep 08 - 10:26 AM (#2438333)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

I think I shall never hear,
After everything's been said,
Nothing so sweet and dear as,
"Original Poster, you give good thread."

12 Sep 08 - 10:57 AM (#2438359)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Thank very much for sharing with us, romany man. Much appreciated.

15 Sep 08 - 06:23 AM (#2440727)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

Off we went the hops to pick,
Followed by apples, we gotta be quick,
The winter is coming
but harvest we must
the hard times will soon be running.

the wagons need paint,
the chavvs need food,
the money we earned
a lot has been spent,

time to knock doors
with pegs and posies
time to shelter
we wont be cosy.

Hard time is coming
shelter to find
heather to cut,
brooms to bind.

where to stop without fear
can we go back where we were last year
meat we will poach
the keeper aware

just a few few rabbits
look there are children here
they cant eat grass
nor the hoss that we rear.

what to sell just to keep em fed
need warm things
for the chavvs bed
the boys on the ground.

the girls fair better
they sleep in the wagon
the boys underneath
on straw with the hound.

some folks take pity
on lives so hard
others give fear
and drive us away

the hares in the field
they will feed us for a week
the deer in the forest a month they will keep
the he knows and traps he do set

we just want to live guv
you have so much
most game you dump
after you have all shot.

We are human guv
dont to prison
me send, who food
to my young'uns will send

as i walk to the gibbet
for poaching the game
i say to you boys
keep liiving the game

for young lads now
men will become
in just a few moments
my breath will be gone

look to your mother
your sisters to
look to our ways
aqnd never give in.

a right to live
and a right to roam
my dear sons
it will soon be gone.

look to your lives
look to your ways
lookt the sad times
aheading your way.

15 Sep 08 - 11:55 AM (#2441063)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Sailor Ron

Full forty years and over this task have I done
Ate the meal from off the corpse before the requiem.
The 'sin-eater' of the county. I eat their sins with the wine & bread
And with take unto my self the sins of all the dead.But who is there to take it on? Where now can I turn?
For if no one steps forth for me in Hell's cold fire I'll burn.
The sins of hundreds gone I carry in my soul
What happens when the 'sin-eater' lies cold beneath his pall?
With sins as countless as the stars, murder, lust & hate
Will anyone step forward my legacy to take?

The 'Death Song' they are keening, so to me they call
Yet they'll cross to the other side fore my shadow on them falls.
Will they watch my spirit flee bearing this black load
the sins of generations past to be judged before the Lord?

For this task you were chosen, so do not your duty shun
For the only one to eat my sins is you my only son.

Eat the bread, and drink the wine, as the priest at my mass
The choice my son is in your hand, do not let this chalice pass.
Or you condemn your father's soul to Hell and black despair.
My son in love, I beg of you take up this cross to bear.
Are you here to take it on? Unto you may I turn?
For if you don't step forth for me in Hell's cold fire I'll burn

Who is there to take it on? Where now can I turn?
Or in Hell's fire, in Hell's cold fire, in Hell's cold fire I burn.

15 Sep 08 - 09:07 PM (#2441619)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


A mighty yogurt is our God,
And wicked as a teasel,
Which makes Our Mother dark and cross
As clouds above grass-laden sod
That draw its great green breasts of loss
Up to the Big Sloth Weasel.

He, stretched upon the thongs of hate,
Despises every inning
Wherein poor pricketts pushing past
The hateful health of Pa's debate
Let go the thought of shorn things massed
As if they might be winning.

Soon comes the second -- aye, that long --
When they are caused to know it:
Each prickly parent reams them through
With a necessitated gong,
To wake them up astride the ewe,
And only snow to show it.

He that did plow a Christmas path
Amidst dark stumps of apples
Shall sure upon the hills be struck
With avocado pears of wrath
And heathen antonyms of luck,
Which each brown spatter dapples.

Each now devises by his ways
An ever crushing pattern
Of rampantly abrading spheres
Dispersed in swarms of bleak displays,
To vomit heat on stellar fears,
While Justice bides, a slattern.

Evil are they that hate the witch
That drinks their blood upon them,
For it is purple, and can but
Despoil the whimsies of our stitch
Till naught but razor blades can cut
Such strings, from such as don them.

But worse and worse the wet flesh gets
By every moonlit measure,
So sprouts of vaginated teeth
Infest the serifs of our debts,
Like pintles holy men bequeath
For our dendritic pleasure.

And so the asterisks of hate
Have synchronized their twitches
In order to become the sight
Of film-clothed Death (at any rate)
And, with a little luck, of Night,
Who comes in small, ripe breeches.

                      [Written about 1959]

16 Sep 08 - 07:36 PM (#2442597)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: olddude


      Elizabeth Akers Allen

At last, when all the summer shine
   That warmed life's early hours is past,
Your loving fingers seek for mine
   And hold them close at last at last!
Not oft the robin comes to build
   Its nest upon the leafless bough
By autumn robbed, by winter chilled,
   But you, dear heart, you love me now.

Though there are shadows on my brow
   And furrows on my cheek, in truth,
The marks where Time's remorseless plough
   Broke up the blooming sward of Youth,
Though fled is every boyish grace
   Might win or hold a lover's vow,
Despite my sad and faded face,
   And darkened heart, you love me now!

I count no more my wasted tears;
   They left no echo of their fall;
I mourn no more my lonesome years;
   This blessed hour atones for all.
I fear not all that Time or Fate
   May bring to burden heart or brow,
Strong in the love that came so late,
   Our souls shall keep it always now!

16 Sep 08 - 10:29 PM (#2442697)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Joe F, were you by any chance an early subject for lysergic experiments? I love the imagery!

16 Sep 08 - 10:32 PM (#2442700)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


(The raunchy district in Boston -- pornographic movies & the like -- succumbed some years ago to political pressure from the city and economic pressure from the expansion of Chinatown.)

Farewell, O street of sleaze,
For even sleaze must pass!
Rebuild, O virtuous Chinese,
That true blue Boston, Mass.,

Where men still had their powers,
And women used their wits;
And "topless" went with towers,
And "bottomless", with pits.

26 Sep 08 - 11:10 AM (#2450879)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Renewal is joined at the head
With the truth of things.
That is the great secret, and why
This thread comes back
Over and over.


26 Sep 08 - 03:17 PM (#2451083)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver


26 Sep 08 - 09:00 PM (#2451314)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


What makes the mist
boil off the street?
What makes big molecules
soak up more heat?
Just that they can do it --
they don't have to choose.
They've got those everloving
degree-of-freedom blues.

Why isn't the sky
solid white with stars?
Why don't you see much
from Jupiter to Mars?
There's lots of space for losing
what you have to lose.
Just don't let it give you those
degree-of-freedom blues.

Energy is everything --
so some people say,
but entropy has got the keys
and trucks it all away.
Everything is plenty --
more than we can use,
but most of it is down with those
degree-of-freedom blues.

We may get TV signals
from deep in outer space,
and funny, long-dead faces
may stare us in the face.
If they look a little green,
that won't be news.
That's just your dopplered-down
degree-of-freedom blues.

There are more words
than you can ever say,
more stars and people
than ever come your way.
You ignore the billions
to learn the ones and twos.
Open up your ears to those
degree-of-freedom blues.

Once love was stuck in cylinders
and pulled creation's train,
but now, if you believe it,
it's falling with the rain.
Love is free to cover
whatever may amuse.
I think I hear love drumming those
degree-of-freedom blues.

Ropes knot and snarl
if you just let them be.
No river runs
straight down to the sea.
Crooked ways are billions;
straight ways, ones and twos.
All the worms are singing those
degree-of-freedom blues.

We send our whores
banging thru the sky;
we keep on building bombs
as if we'd like to die --
just cause we can do it
(costs too much to choose).
That's what's got me singing those
degree-of-freedom blues.

You can run a rocky road
balancing a pole,
but you can't run with water
and keep it in the bowl.
What you've got to run with
has still more ways to lose,
and what you've got to live with is
degree-of-freedom blues.


26 Sep 08 - 11:09 PM (#2451356)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Joe, that's just brilliant,man!!!


27 Sep 08 - 11:04 AM (#2451602)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jeri

I LOVE Joe's work!

This, however, is all over the place, much like me. Doesn't know if it wants to rhyme or not. It probably needs editing... a LOT of editing. I used to write stuff like this when I was young, and I'd hide a bit of rhyme in it. I also wanted to turn this into a legend with a crow bringing the promise of life and setting the conditions.

Stone Woman

The world is made of one too many sunsets,
Glowing bittersweet fire
      through dusky clouds
             at the end of too-short days.

It is said that statues sometime live,
No one knows what magic makes it so.

Stone Woman watched as three times the sun rose-
Molten gold in a sky of cornflower blue possibility

The first day glowed with joyful color,
Until the sky went black and the light was ripped away
Like a door slamming shut
After just a glimpse of joy denied.

On the second day, the morning bloomed vermillion and marigold
Promising fullness and warmth
But smothering clouds soaked up the sun
Sucked out the air and mocked her foolish hope.
The world dimmed slowly, allowing her to believe sunset was illusion
So when might came, it was all the sadder.

On the third day, a bashful sun kissed the morning.
The far-away was amethyst and peach; the sunlight, golden laughter.
Stone Woman watched and longed to join the birds of dawn, and lift upon the breath of a sigh
She thought, 'Night will only come again'
But she opened her heart one last time.
As long as life had not abandoned her, she would not abandon it.

She wanted happiness but knew that day too would end,
When it did, she faced west to never see the dawn again
She was given three days to live and feel before she turned again to stone
And in what passes for a heart in a stone thing
She wondered at the cruelty love and life could bring
She knew she was not blessed but cursed, to remember all and to be alone

And she stood through cycles of day and dark for uncountable years
The days were dimmer, the grey land stark, and the rain was all she had for tears.

27 Sep 08 - 08:14 PM (#2451860)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Professor, resting from your rigor
to dimple the contour up,
do not mumble "causality", say
"because the sky is black at night
so that there can be physics".

Copywriter, moiling on the 23rd floor
in an inside room, to be a nuisance and a liar
just within the law,
how much more you would stink
with no seas to piss in!

Man, how little you could make of life
if you did not rest from your rigor at last!

                                    (ca. 1970)

27 Sep 08 - 08:29 PM (#2451870)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

JOe, I love that degrees of freedom one, esp!!! Really brilliant!

Jeri, no, no, and no! Don't touch it! Don't doubt it! Aye-yi-aye, woman! That is stunning. I love it!! (Esp. since my jewellery company is called "StonePeople!")

27 Sep 08 - 08:50 PM (#2451882)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Beautiful work, Joe.

Jeri, that is rich. Poignant, also. Good.


22 Jan 09 - 10:52 AM (#2546081)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


The impossible is made by street walking,
Menders, and patchers,
Fixers of today, making ready, lovers in wait.

Teaching the earlier lessons, talking
About small, important matters,
About each; nothing heady, but nothing late.

When embers are made new by the breath
And such places prepared to be filled,
Then it begins, by multiplication.

Then, the whispers of old deaths
Sing to bring out the impossible
In the voice of a whole nation.

22 Jan 09 - 02:33 PM (#2546275)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


Having no mind to make up
provokes me
defies that need
to take a stand
to resist deviation
from a course
of action
that will
identify me
place me

written by Tamara Hiatt, between 1992 - 1996

22 Jan 09 - 02:45 PM (#2546291)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


   Whole life
half lived

Parceled out
    of me

    I reduce
common denominator

    I am
   top heavy

   Divided by

   Attempts to
   cross out

   Result in

   What is
   but this

   Half life
----to be----
whole lived

Written by Tamara Hiatt between 1992 and 1996

22 Jan 09 - 03:43 PM (#2546354)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

I just discovered this thread today. Thank you Amos for creating it and for ressurecting from last post.

It is going to take me some time to read through entire thread. I like to take my time with poesy. Some wonderful stuff here. Already pm'd one poster cause he made me cry.

22 Jan 09 - 05:46 PM (#2546466)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,TJ in San Diego

Mere singing makes not a singer,
Nor mere writing, a writer.
Wishing is not believing,
Nor a promise, a deed.

A dilettante's life is a life unfulfilled,
Dabbling, trying, touching without feeling.
A life must be more, with its pain and its joy,
Without depth, one swims in a shallow pond,
And dies, unremembered, and in need.

Living is immersion, not simply connected,
But one with your passions.
Like a steed seeking freedom,
Take the bit in your teeth, and run!
Run until you bleed.

Dare to be ridiculous,
Dare to lay bare your soul,
Dare the slings and arrows
Of those less willing and more fearful.
Drink deeply from life's fountain, drink indeed.

22 Jan 09 - 07:48 PM (#2546556)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Man after me own heart, TJ!


22 Jan 09 - 08:35 PM (#2546581)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Convected, fueled by the noon's fat
(you are a flame in all you eat),
in sight of our ruddy and pale tent at
    the top, we made a movable feast.
    Now we stand, staring at the east
      like the moon, and break our starry fast:
      golden-breasted, silvery-assed,
unbound boots on reminiscent feet.

22 Jan 09 - 09:16 PM (#2546606)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: John Hardly


Limburger send your smell away
Cheddar, the orange one on the tray
Gouda's very very extraordinary
Muenster, not the Addam's family

Jack, don't hit the road I love ya babe
Colby, just the smoky taste I'm bound to crave
Gouda's very very extraordinary
Muenster, not the Addam's family.

Bleu I serve you in my salad bowls
Swiss I stick my fingers in your holes
Gouda's very very extraordinary
Muenster, not the Addam's family.

Baby, baby,
I'll Brie around.

22 Jan 09 - 11:52 PM (#2546669)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Indrani Ananda

I've only just discovered this! So here's one from me. I wrote it when Tabitha my cat died five years ago.

                                        Lost Treasure

             It's not for a child that I'm grieving;
             No daughter, no son, not that;
             But the memory I have that is sweetest -
             The soul of a beautiful cat.

             But what of the cats whom nobody loved -
             The feral, the wild, and the stray-
             Do they abide in God's memory
             To wake and be treasured one day?


23 Jan 09 - 12:10 AM (#2546680)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Wonderful new additions, folks! Thanks for posting them!

23 Jan 09 - 01:28 AM (#2546700)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Stephen L. Rich


By Stephen Lee Rich

Beware the man who offers a list of how much we must fear and boasts deliverance.

Beware the man who cries, "Hide under your beds and I will make your beds a safe shield!"

Beware the man who arrests angels from their flight then demonizes the fallen.

Beware the man who proclaims, "Those who do not know terror, who stand up to and face it are dangerous fools! I shall smite them down along with all those amongst the scribes and rabble who applaud them!"

Beware the man who brags that he can make fear know fear.

While it is true that there is much in the world of which to be afraid, we must ask ourselves this question.

Against whom do we need the greater defense,

The foreign terrorist who hates us and wishes our destruction simply for being us,

Or the man from our own home who is having breakfast in the bed under which he would have us hide?

23 Jan 09 - 09:36 PM (#2547526)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Ever since Alan T. and Johnny von,
We've known that life is just a silly con
-way game, an endless evanescent volley
of bytes inflicted by a melancholy
    on us black sheep in this enshrouded valley,
    true to the falsity of golden Cali.,
      despising cant, and doing all we can,
      despite CO, to keep up with the van.

24 Jan 09 - 12:44 PM (#2547922)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Notes: words and music by Malvina Reynolds; copyright 1964 Schroder Music Company, renewed 1992. People often think of this as an ecology song, but Malvina wrote it after reading Mark Lane's book, Rush to Judgment, about the Kennedy assassination.

God bless the grass that grows thru the crack.
They roll the concrete over it to try and keep it back.
The concrete gets tired of what it has to do,
It breaks and it buckles and the grass grows thru,
And God bless the grass.

God bless the truth that fights toward the sun,
They roll the lies over it and think that it is done.
It moves through the ground and reaches for the air,
And after a while it is growing everywhere,
And God bless the grass.

God bless the grass that grows through cement.
It's green and it's tender and it's easily bent.
But after a while it lifts up its head,
For the grass is living and the stone is dead,
And God bless the grass.

God bless the grass that's gentle and low,
Its roots they are deep and its will is to grow.
And God bless the truth, the friend of the poor,
And the wild grass growing at the poor man's door,
And God bless the grass.

Malvina Reynolds

24 Jan 09 - 10:03 PM (#2548382)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

We whom fear and chance deprive
of dependents to deprave
must take our consolation prize
in foul but charitable praise
of precious peers who will connive
at comfort in a naked knave,
whose laugh affirms what sense denies,
whose love is death to yeas and nays.

25 Jan 09 - 06:13 AM (#2548549)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Prison Breaks

Who does not dream of prison-breaks?
A pal with a motorcycle or
a hidden airplane on the moor?
To heal the hard scars
And too many churlish thoughts from
Brute planet-living where
The food is poor. Not enough drink.
Corners smell of sweat and
The entertainment's lousy and
All the fun is happening
Somewhere else. It stinks.

Who, if only they had a map,
Would not bust out and
Take your chance
On the outside?
But you're dreaming, pal.
The place is too well organized, see.
You've been trained into it, see.
Just go back to sleep, would ya?
Nobody's going anywhere, no
Breakouts; you'll be right here

25 Jan 09 - 07:55 PM (#2549127)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

You cannot sleep forever on percale.
More transient even than a fancied kiss
    is the complaisance of the pillowcase.
      Weary though you may be, and strong the pill,
Dark's consolation, like itself, will pale.
You cry, and blow your nose. You sleep, and piss.
    One-two, fuck-you, mad Nature sets the pace
      For us, too frail to help, too tough to kill.

25 Jan 09 - 08:25 PM (#2549137)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

WE're in dark veins together, Joe, as the strep said to the staph.



30 Jan 09 - 08:03 PM (#2553317)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: John Hardly

Dandelions are dangerous
Dandelions don't need gardeners
Dandelions are artists

They ignore all the boundaries in the yard
Flower beds? They're in them and they're out of them
Wreaking their insomniac havoc all about.

The crafted and groomed watch jealously
From their straight rows and their well planned lives.
And they can see who is having the fun.
Painting dada smiley faces on daVinci lawns

The other flowers are not stupid
Just stationary
And, sheltered as they are
They know who's been around
Growing zones? Don't make me laugh

The other flowers are not stupid
They just have the plastic-ness left on their couch-ness
They have their "Do Not Touch" signs
Displayed in their careful elegance

Meanwhile the children make chains with yellowed fingers
Meanwhile the children test to see if they like butter
And the crafted and groomed look on
And wish they'd come up with that simple idea first.

Dandelions are artists.
With their outrageous style
And a bright yellow Tina Turner hair-do
With outrageous opulence that doesn't spare a Springtime acre
Subtlety be damned.

Dandelions are dangerous
Dandelions have no need for gardeners
Dandelions are artists.

30 Jan 09 - 08:33 PM (#2553331)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Pretty is thy thatch, pretty thy fur,
Pretty thy golden ears wherein my tongue
Shall fuck, whereon my lips shall nibble, where
My murmur to embrace shall lovelike reach,
And we shall lie like mortars, each in each,
In wavy luxuries of flesh and hair,
Grasping with teeth at last joy's bottom rung,
Until we clasp as wet as once we were
In the first camp of praise.
                              Some oil drips,
Some burns, and finally the engine bursts.
Suffer our thousandths to be like our firsts,
And we will be content with ears and lips,
With tongues and teeth and fingers; but above
Hover these fears of boredom: thoughts of love. (ca. 1968)

31 Jan 09 - 11:39 AM (#2553730)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Today's Sheldon reflects on aspiring to poetry.


31 Jan 09 - 12:12 PM (#2553752)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

In 2004 I had this published in an Anthology of Erotic Verse.
I called it:-
The Noises You Make.

As I gently caress your delicate breasts,
Sof noises emanate from your ears and nose.
I slide my hand from your breast and let it,
Glide slowly towards your abdomen.

I reach the soft mound of pleasure and,
Caress the hair which hides your maidenhood.
All the time kissing, licking and chewing your lips,
My tongue probing the depths of your mouth.

My fingers find your clitoris and so,
Begin to gently massage that little pleasure dome.
The sounds coming from you get louder,
As I lift myself gently on to you.

The noises you make are reaching a crescendo,
As I slide in and out once more.....
I can't help but think to myself,
I wish you wouldn't snore!!!!!

Sorry but all my poetry has a twist at the end.
Best wishes, Mike.

31 Jan 09 - 12:51 PM (#2553778)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Georgiansilver, that is so wrong

          ...and so hilarious.

27 Mar 09 - 04:02 PM (#2598809)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: romany man

My mate John Barden has put the words from marks in the grass to music, it can be found on you tube, just typr marks in the grass and you know the rest, many many thanks to john for his work on the poem, now it has a voice, again thanks john

27 Mar 09 - 04:38 PM (#2598832)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Like you, I am just visiting here
From stars or from songs;
I refuse the cold origins of stone and dust
Because there is no truth in them.
You can say such conclusions are mad,
Yet they bring new spaces, laughter, difference.
If your sober analysis is sane,
Why does it lead to solids, entropy,
The inheritance of spite in the wind?

If I say "Let it be mad,
And let us make the most of it."
The world slipping toward occlusion shrugs,
Falling down in the wind,
It can only strive
In the making of nothing.
And though there is no ether by hard measurement,
Something still carries light from the stars,
And something sings from the heart.

San Diego, California

27 Mar 09 - 06:41 PM (#2598897)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

romany man, thanks for telling us about John Barden singing your song. It is really beautiful and he's got a wonderful voice.

27 Mar 09 - 08:09 PM (#2598950)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


A plainclothes imp saw the first second of
a shameless Boston summer love.
Satan blushed and vainly mobilized:
Hell's frontier was compromised.
Up in the universe, everything became
slightly more physical. The same
stuff went on, transfigured by defiance,
just within the laws of science.
Masses of granite kissed each other's faults,
two-stepping quarks took up the waltz,
in a tree's lee, sucking summer heat,
whirlwinds coupled in the street,
crook'd molecules forswore the pentagon,
Don Júan put a condom on,
an ag'd curmudgeon lost himself in lewd
ecstasies of gratitude,
nature turned out a zero-defect freak,
trout held their breath in Boulder Creek,
far from a blazing, basking barley field
the sun exploded and was healed,
shrimp wagged their tails and stirred up the abyss,
English bent itself toward this,
all in a second. There've been eighty million
since: heaven could use a billion.


29 Mar 09 - 01:07 PM (#2599882)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I love that, Joe!!


29 Mar 09 - 01:14 PM (#2599887)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Jester, when he wakes
Finds he has a head full of maps
And no-where to go.
He rolls out to shave, looking for
A madcap renewal service and
Cursing the stubborness of nouns.

"Damn the nouns, nouns, nouns , nouns!"
"Damn the nouns, nouns, nouns! The nouns
Are all against me!", he yells into the mirror behind the sink.
The fog of new water hides the smirk
Of his reflection, and then the wink.
The reason nouns are up in arms is a rumor they have heard,
That he had muttered it in his fitful sleep: "God is a Verb."

06 Apr 09 - 10:18 AM (#2605610)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


What is National Poetry Month? National Poetry Month is a month-long, national celebration of poetry established by the Academy of American Poets. The concept is to widen the attention of individuals and the media—to the art of poetry, to living poets, to our complex poetic heritage, and to poetry books and journals of wide aesthetic range and concern. We hope to increase the visibility and availability of poetry in popular culture while acknowledging and celebrating poetry's ability to sustain itself in the many places where it is practiced and appreciated.

Who started it? The Academy of American Poets has led this initiative from its inception in 1996 and along the way has enlisted a variety of government agencies and officials, educational leaders, publishers, sponsors, poets, and arts organizations to help.

When is National Poetry Month? April. Every year since 1996.

Why was April chosen for National Poetry Month? In coordination with poets, booksellers, librarians, and teachers, the Academy chose a month when poetry could be celebrated with the highest level of participation. Inspired by the successful celebrations of Black History Month (February) and Women's History Month (March), and on the advice of teachers and librarians, April seemed the best time within the year to turn attention toward the art of poetry—in an ultimate effort to encourage poetry readership year-round.

T. S. Eliot wrote, "April is the cruelest month." It is our hope that National Poetry Month lessens that effect.

On a lighter note, Chaucer wrote:

    Whan that April with his showres soote
    The droughte of March hath perced to the roote,
    And bathed every veine in swich licour,
    Of which vertu engendred is the flowr

Finally, Edna St. Vincent Millay asked, "To what purpose, April, do you return again?" For National Poetry Month, of course!--->

06 Apr 09 - 02:53 PM (#2605812)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Sundown Meadow

No man built this church
These dark groves of old aspen
keep their secrets in shaded depths
The slanted sun showers the ridge with golden light
aspen leaves quake green and silver in the soundless breeze
A field in yellow flower
each stem illuminated in the setting sun
Myriad of tiny insects drift between the blooms

Elk emerge like brown spirit shapes
from the distant treeline
Above, snow-topped peaks subdued to silhouettes
as the sun's last brilliance is given to the meadow
Your hair, lips, breasts the color of the sun
and the sun's heat within you

Here the Piper might be heard behind the silence
summoning the stars
to emerge from groves of night
and hold court with the quarter moon
Here the evening is bourne gently
on long shadows

Two wheels brought the two of us here
up a twisted path
to speak of building a home in the meadow
only to know we shall never dwell within this
but that instead this hour
shall dwell within us

06 Apr 09 - 03:46 PM (#2605888)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Wow. Beautiful. Makes me jealous!!!


06 Apr 09 - 06:37 PM (#2606015)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

I'll second that, E.J.; beautiful thruout, and the "punchline" is sublime.

06 Apr 09 - 09:06 PM (#2606136)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

When April pours the colors of a shell
Upon the hills, when every little creek
Is shot with silver from the Chesapeake
In shoals new-minted by the ocean swell,
When strawberries go begging, and the sleek
Blue plums lie open to the blackbird's beak,
We shall live well -- we shall live very well. -- Elinor Wylie



There once were ones, now dead as Napier's bones,
Who, once they'd reached the right-foot little toe,
Had barely got the sheep down past the teens,
But you can toggle off a million beans,
Add five percent, and still be home for tea.
A *software artist*! That's a thing to be
(Trade-jargon with lascivious overtones)!
Another (string, hell!) fiddle for your bow!

12 Apr 09 - 01:59 PM (#2609755)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,William Everett (was Zeke)

If I were a proton in a microwave oven
(which is an electron accelerator),,
I might see history, as it has seen me:
starting to know me with Neil's Bohr,
...the Moses of the nucleus....
I am atomic number, and my nemesis neutrons have me in my cocoon,,,
someday, in new age, I will escape in a proton beam..
I have a love/hate relationship with atom smashers,
and the nuclear forces
that have bound me,
only able to feel my lady electrons,
not able to consummate them,,,
and the microwave oven fights me as I try to pull them ever
closer,, It is an electron accelerator, and I cannot beat that,
only someday hope to join it, and butterfly away
....! But, all we have now is patters of waves,
orbits, I feel your spin,,
lovely electron lady but you move so fast that I cannot pull you in,
as if the earth was to be swallowed by the sun...!
Why how my urge could be so destructive of your flight...!!
!!!!!!!!,electron shells is sometimes a lonely word,
only used in high school chemistry ,
and then you forget how much more I am than a puny proton,
or lowest of all the lousy leptons....!!.
. I am so much larger than there subatomic particles,
quarks are jokes that I tell my friends...
And when ionized..oh what a lonely atom it is!!!.
Unless we have gained an electron,,,!!
Even then often I have to share with protons in other nuclei,,,
and you do not know the pains I have felt, when bonds are broken,,,
I only can survive it by becoming a teacher....!!!....
Heisenberg saw that he could not see me, and know where I am at the same time....
Someday I will chase those photons in a beam,
Screaming to know what is on the other side of the nearest black hole,,,,
I will travel thru and you will call me quasar worm hole,
brightest, and longest of all lights, little bang until you get close,,
believe me it is BIG, big bang when you get close,,
Quasar is God's light.....and the end of black night...
A new dream,,endless stream....have faith

12 Apr 09 - 08:40 PM (#2609916)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

From a letter to a friend, in response to a poem of his, 1981:

...whose shitkickers still stick in T.O. clay,
I greet you gratefully from far away.

Mine crackle broken glass: Greetings from Boston,
where people are abstractions on concrete --
plenty to look at, very few to meet.
It's true there's Culture, but that mostly lost on
The likes of me, who value most the chance
I've had to get _away_ from Entertainment.
Being an urbanite has in the main meant
not this or that expensive song & dance,
just easy simple ways (at least so far)
to mind my business & not own a car.

You like me "more than most", it says here. Well!
more than you like most? more than most like me?
Bless English for the ambiguity.
In either _case_, it's good I got the hell
away from there, so we could talk at last.
You've noticed how unlikely conversation
is in our bourgeois corner of the nation.
Pisses me off. Jacques Barzun thinks it has t-
o do with feeling only feelings matter --
and fights start if you dig beneath the chatter.

Well, no-one's more afraid of that than I --
but now I must be careful what I say
or damn sure I'll drive even you away:
Right-minded people always wince & sigh
when someone "runs coself down", but the trouble
is that your comfort-worshiping taboo
gives me no better things to say or do --
it just makes half the world unmentionable.
The reigning bitch permits no comment on her:
once it was Sex, then Death, and now Dishonor.

Besides, you likewise must have had enough
of Brechtian Byronics by this time.
(But Koestler hints Brecht really took the rhyme
scheme -- and a poem -- from Villon, whose stuff
I've never read. I think I'll check him out,
now that I've breached the Widener's straitened gate.
He'll have been bucks for someone to translate
in this new age of raunch, I have no doubt.)
So, trusting you'll come back, I'll let you go
and grant you peace.
                      a/k/a Joe

12 Apr 09 - 10:55 PM (#2609952)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Nehi

Paying my dues.
Copyright 2006 – Tennessee Jim

I'm standin' on the corner with my guitar in my hand
Yeah, I'm standin' on the corner, with my guitar in my hand
Playin' for tips from anybody I can.

Keep wonderin' if I'll make it out of this town
Wonderin' if…I'll make it out of this town.
Before whiskey or the Devil puts me down in the ground.

Just playing the blues
And payin' my dues.
Livin' a hard life
but one that I choose.

Rode an eighteen wheeler up from New Orleans
Old eighteen wheeler, up from New Orleans
Running from a woman, and some bad cocaine.

She started talking marriage and settlin' down
Talking 'bout marriage…and settlin' down.
Had to take my guitar, get the hell out of town.

Now I'm playin' the blues
and payin' my dues.
Waiting on the the good Lord
To give me good news.

The wind's pickin' up, I feel a chill in my bones
North wind's blowing, I feel a chill in my bones.
Winter's coming on and I gotta go home.

I hear the whistle blowin', on the evenin' train
Hear that whistle blowin', on the evenin' train.
Take me back to Mississippi or New Orleans.

I'll keep on playin' the blues
and payin' my dues
I'm gonna go back home
Where there's nothin to lose.

13 Apr 09 - 03:41 PM (#2610356)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Nehi


The phone sat at his side for two days.
Stagnant air, sweaty, opaque enclosed the house-
Uterine walls suffocating the adult fetus within-
A birth long overdue—silence screamed at him.

Measured portion of bran and fruit—no coffee—some juice

another procession of measured meals and self-injected insulin.
. . . Running out of places where the skin's not pricked.

Kyrie Eleison.

He roamed through deserted room after deserted room
with whispers haunting where his mother was-
the funeral dirge, the cousin twice removed,
the chicken soup and ham and cheese,
the lapel rent, the priest paid.
He fluffed the pillows—straightened the shade.

Measured portion of fruit—green salad, no salt . . .
another in procession of measured meals and sel-injected insulin.
Running out of places where the skin's not pricked.

Kyrie Eleison.

He turned on the iron. Filled the water just so.
Readied the starch, removed the plastic and tags and pressed.
He had an important date and must get dressed.
Every wrinkle gone. Handkerchief and undershirt clean.
But there seemed no end to the wrinkles and
he scorched the shirt—but on the tucked-in part.
It wouldn't show.
Measured portion of fish and greens—bottled water. . .
Another in procession of measured meals and self-injected
Running out of places where the skin's not pricked.

Kyrie Eleison.

He took the polished key. Unlocked the drawer.
Sifted through neatly stacked statements.
Wrote the checks. Stamped them paid.
Two months ahead. Should be enough.
Returned the key. Thoughts of all he
Empty, hollow thoughts.
then turned instead and read from "Prufrock" and The Confessions,
donning mendicant robes.
Insensed air around the pallid priest, "pater noster, qui est in calis."
A blessed Saint Anthony. A cup of tea. A peach.
Running out of places where the skin's not pricked.

Kyrie Eleison.

"Keep things private. All's in order," he wrote.

Dressed in pressed clothes--(Dawn comes soon after the moon falls)—
"Mustn't be late. 440 to 65 North. Off at Shelby. 17 blocks down.
10 minutes, no traffic."

He had practiced Saturday and every night since then.

He parked at the lake. The rains had not come as promised to cool the
stagnant air. So
he plodded through the Stygian nights 17 blocks
watching the city expand large before him. Diminishing him.
A gunshot rang to is left. A domestic dispute that did not involve him.
He wished it did.

He ascended the crest of the tumid river. Torpid,
he studied the sluggish slough of despond below. A pilgrim himself.
A propitiation. And
he though of measured meals and self-injected insulin.

He'd run out of places where the skin's not pricked.

The General Jackson found him tangled under a riverfront dock.
"No tourist saw, thank God. Might blemish the city. You can't shield
everybody from everything."

As they pulled the body from beneath the dock, they noted,
"he had his shoes and his socks on and his shirt tucked in."

13 Apr 09 - 03:48 PM (#2610360)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Vivid stuff indeed, Nehi. Thanks.


18 Apr 09 - 01:39 PM (#2613929)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


No ruts, no wheels, no wagonloads;
Cleaving to the dry middle hump of the road,
Safe in the center of neglect.
A quiet middle, free of intersection
For meetings are always done at the edges.
Minds that live here fear the ditch and hedge
And define their paths by staying away
From all directions. Heaven
is not desired, and the dull middle voice
Goes to eleven.

18 Apr 09 - 03:16 PM (#2613983)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Very well done, A.

Nehi, that gave me a chill. very strong stuff.

20 Apr 09 - 05:52 PM (#2615152)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Nehi

Thanks, that's my daughter's work.

18 Jun 09 - 01:28 PM (#2659499)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Midnight Snack

I reach inside my close cropped hair
and graze my fingernails along my scalp
summarily probing for the banquet
I unearth it, as it twists aroung, dark and fair,
newly emerged from the nits sown
upon the ruddy stalks of fur
it's miniature legs squirming alongside
my avaricious thumb and forefinger
as I heave it into my mouth
with ravenous bravado
savouring the quiet crunch within


18 Jun 09 - 03:23 PM (#2659603)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

LMAO Amerigin; was that based on a recent personal experience? : ).

18 Jun 09 - 05:54 PM (#2659770)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

An extra stanza, written ca. 1980:

Saw a crawdad big as a whale:
Jesus bugs fucking -- I was on their scale,
Sugar babe.

15 Jul 09 - 03:32 PM (#2680946)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Then came a software engineer, a man
Of registers and bytes, of
Nors and Ifs,
And calls to subroutines. He said, "I know
in life's raw fire a thing may be so
And be at once not so, and both be true.
But this truth I cannot allow,
It will not make a tool somehow
Or move an algorithm to resolve
The data it is given. Truth
Is not the use to which I strive,
Or how we, in my trade,
Are paid, how we survive."

A lawyer friend, sharing the patio, replied,
"I understand. The truth that may abide
Is vastly overrated in the normal flow
Of our affairs. I too cannot allow
The glittering lure of truth to force itself
Into cases, or their place in law. You and I
Are brothers in pursuit of some other good,
Knowing the data has no use than
That to which it can be put."

Just then, a summer rain began,
And both the lawyer and the engineer,
Laughing, took their wine
And retreated to the family room.
A large screen brightened up the space,
Offering basketball of great importance to them both.
ANd so they settled on their path
For the next few hours, watching the brilliant
pixels change, and change and change,
And thirsting for the game, between the ads,
Neither thinking the other one was mad.

15 Jul 09 - 06:42 PM (#2681066)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: greensue

Just a Drop

Drip, drip, drip.
The sound of life
In the cool of the morning.
From tree to bush,
Blade of grass
To Scorched earth.
Drip, drip, drip.
Drink green sprouting shoot,
Drink the blood of the land.
One drip, would clean a child's eyes!
One drip, moisten cracked lips.
One drip, moisture for the swolen tongue.
For me, it runs throughmy fingers
Like the gold of a jeweler.
For you, it's maybe soon.
Maybe, matbe.
How could I get to be so old
Without realising how wealthy I am?
Drip, drip, drip.

17 Jul 09 - 06:10 PM (#2682507)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

From Deda:

Reading a Poem

I commit to read a poem.
I stop everything else. I sit down. I read.
I taste each word in each line.
I take in, know the feelings.
I come to the end. I consider the whole.
I study the poet's name, the blurb.
(He died young. He grew up in Brooklyn.)
Finally I declare that I am done. I will not read the next one.
I would sit there with the pages forever,
Turning, reading, rereading, tasting, drinking.
But no. I stand, set down the pages, and walk, purposefully.
I look, act in command. But my head is blowing up.
I have opened up a box, and things are flying out.
Words fly around my head like Harpies.
They scream and swoop and laugh and cry.
Sometimes they fly together into phrases, lines.
"Pine!" yells one. "Spruce!" yells the next,
and they cackle and swirl in circles,
like swallows in traffic, daring cars to hit them.
"Trees?" I ask, "or verbs?" "YES!" they shriek.
"And STREET names! PLACES!
They taunt me. They are Harpies, Furies
Who want me to turn them into Kind Ones,
Into Eumenides. I don't know how.
I would have to write, and write, and write,
Take their dictation, until they drop to sleep.
And then they might be altered.
For some little while, perhaps.
They will pursue me, in any case.
If I read for ten minutes, they will chase me for hours.
I have to buy a mop and a pan, I have to clean the kitchen.
I have to look for work.
This is why I don't read poems
As often as I might.

July 14, 2009

20 Jul 09 - 11:17 AM (#2683886)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

More reasons to Keep Writing Them!

20 Jul 09 - 02:44 PM (#2683989)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Memorial Day

Memorial Day. The sun is punching through
the threadbare residue of the cumulous clouds,
a hazy veil of indigo sky heralding the ordained
invasion of summer. The battalions of young
libidinous girls march in formation as they cruise
the unkempt thoroughfares of downtown Portland,
their uniforms of skintight shorts, and miniskirts,
unmask newly shaved legs scintillating with the
lubricating dew of perspiration. Their breasts, scantily
obscured by bikini tops and low cut blouses, jangle
with the penetrating goose steps of their high
heeled sandals. The volunteers of this estrogen
brigade are flourishing fuchsias aspiring to be
harvested from the yielding topsoil of their
birth, a desperation engendered from the
eroticism of the antiquated spring.


22 Jul 09 - 03:01 AM (#2685069)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

A Late Night Walk

An hour and a half passed midnight,
To the west is the taunting tail of the false sunrise
Birthed by the counterfeit luminosity of the metropolis
Just beyond this swathe of animated timber, protruding
Through the rippling channel of the Columbia
A crane traipses down the unyielding planks of the marina
In a twitching prance reminiscent of Egyptian hieroglyphs
Beak protracted before him, pitching from stem to stern
Along his S sculptured throat, with each dodgy step,
To the incessant screeching of the steel gangway
Chafing against the dock, with the minute swells
Manufactured by the rapacious currents
I recline on the serrated surface of a picnic table
The iron bolts swiftly refrigerating the sweltering moisture
Saturating the obsidian cotton of my t-shirt
Arms elevated to shroud the streetlights
Endeavouring to suppress the celestial painting from my vision
The galaxy, the universe, cavort their pirouetting jig above me
An intricate spider web of vibrating stars
Each a solitary flame, a candle floating in a window
Compelling, navigating their sailors home


28 Jul 09 - 05:08 PM (#2689097)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: greensue

Come on you brilliant lot, more required please.

28 Jul 09 - 06:11 PM (#2689181)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Jane's Eyes

Jane's eyes can not detect the way
and so she was guided slowly to the table
"Ah the Sun!" she said
We sat on the bright terrace
heat rising from the painted deck
a breeze rustled the table cloth
Jane sat silently as a buzz of conversation
rose in the warm air
she wove her fingers together
then, said "what is out there?"
the buzz ceased, "rocks and trees" said Vic
-a fact no one could dispute-
but Jane's fingers worked again, her head more inclined
I said "we are perched on the rim
of a great valley. I see shadowed ridge lines
5 and 10 miles away, partly obscured
by great pines that stand before us
below, perhaps 200 feet, there is a small meadow
where deer would graze, and a trail to follow
ending in a defile where a creek
might roll in rain"
A toast was raised by someone, I raised my glass
and gazed upon the hundred purples of the distant ridges
and I drank of it long and deep
despairing of words

28 Jul 09 - 06:45 PM (#2689207)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

As brilliant as they come.


29 Jul 09 - 12:23 PM (#2689667)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Dreaming As a Blue Whale

And then I dreamt I'd lost my ship at sea
And swept up in the storm, was slammed among the broken spars,
Hit on the head, and taken down by salt waters at last.

Finding this broken skull and drowned flesh beneath
My standards, I left it, and drifted
The length and depth of the Pacific, trying to understand.

I found at last a settling place, descending
Into the form of a blue whale calf, new-borning
And felt it was something I could be. So I kept it.

Imagine the learning! How deep is down, how often up,
Blowing with precision, spy-hopping, how to fight
For love and sing to the clan at depth. Not an easy course.

Especially the singing--in my dream I kept remembering the Shirelles,
And wanted to sing Doo Wop to the blues around me, oooo-wah.
But the elders butted me and the rest ignored my trying Blue Moon.

My mother loved me, though, and knowing that was enough.
I practiced using my voice, alone on the 100 fathom line,
And sang remembered pops in whale tones. I got good, too!

I even mastered the Shhh in Sh-Boom, a foreign sound. And
When the time came I had to be my own whale,
I could do a dozen numbers from the Fifties. So

I cruised the oceans looking for a research team with
Microphones in the water and when I found them,
Of course I sang Dream and Santa Catalina, in dark whale tones.

It freaked them out, of course, and then they lured me to some bay
And I would breach and bellow The Book of Love or Donna
Octaves below "C", splashing down and rising again for the chorus.

Crowds in small boats and large bobbed out to hear it! It was a wonder!
How could a whale learn such old tunes? I was a smash, a blue baritone hit.
But after a while people began to say it wasn't that good.

They were annoyed because I wouldn't pronounce
The words as well as the originals they loved,
And became disenchanted with me. Attendance fell. So I left,

Went back to the deeps, started my own family
In bottomless waters where I sing
To the calves as they grow, about the Book of Love.

The dream ended well, even better than the original, I think.

29 Jul 09 - 02:51 PM (#2689796)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

A whale of a tale!

29 Jul 09 - 04:13 PM (#2689860)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

YEah, but it makes me wonder what the hell I've been smoking....


30 Jul 09 - 10:42 AM (#2690315)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Neil D

Many ages gone and I hold him near
Centuries silenced this sweet voice I hear
Faded by time's mists to my eyes so clear
Who asked where are the snows of yesteryear

As bold as cold brass, so wracked by sick fear
Loving God, robbing churches, crime his career
Despicable man whom we hold so dear
Who asked where are the snows of yesteryear

Luxurious days, the life so auster
Cynical soul whose heart was sincere
As common as sod no other his peer
Who asked where are the snows of yesteryear

Passed from here for half a millenium
Still atop poetic continuum

30 Jul 09 - 11:18 AM (#2690330)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


I will not say my heart is thundering,
My mind isn't glazed with awe, or sauteed with pity;
But I think of you often, and have been wondering
If you might see the possibility. This is what I saw.

I will be the measurer, and the counter of dimension.
I will do your taxes. If you could just make sure
I have something to eat, not junk, but not raw
And you can be in charge, too, of feng shui, colors and time.

I will count up your RAM, your voltages, your ROI,
You my carbos and my waist, and tell me when
To get a haircut. So we could live,
A good arrangement, one that good save
Nine per cent of our combined incomes before taxes.

You do the food, I'll do the numbers.
What more could we need? Come on,
And say, "Yes". It's sensible!
It could be fun!
Now where are you going?

30 Jul 09 - 04:29 PM (#2690571)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Carnival King

From Snow and Ice He arose
Decked in finest Motley
and wearing the Fool's Crown
We proclaim Him King!
His throne is gold
studded with gems
yet it is deal withal
covered with paint and paste

And He has reigned a Fortnight
We have hallowed Him with strong drink
and Wantonness
with song and dancing
until we are spent
This morning ends His reign at last
We drape Him in ivy
His throne decorated in sheaths of corn
Drowsy from His revels He takes little notice
as young girls pull Him on a wagon
through the village street

At the river he is cast down
ripped with scythes and pelted with stones
and given His true name
For He is Death
and He must Die
to bring Life to us all

To the birds upon the leaves
To the roots that twist in soil
And so we have torn Him
taunted and beaten Him
and cast His bones into the furrows

The Carnival King is Dead!
and we shall live another year
For He is Death
and He has Died
to bring Life to us all

30 Jul 09 - 04:56 PM (#2690589)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Ferociously good, Ernie!! Whew!


30 Jul 09 - 04:58 PM (#2690590)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Time goes and steals our lives
Leaving us shaking our heads in the dust
Left behind in its wake of childhood,
School-yards, partners, lovers, children, loss and love.

Left to introspection sidetracked for years
The dust settles, sight is clear, if chosen,
Paths cross or separate or veer off to the unexpected
We say, "Well, I never!" Or, "Wouldn't've believed it!"

And there we go...filling up or in time,
Making our own dust devils, feeling alive again
Dancing, crying, building up, pulling down
Opening up, closing up, and moseying along.

(So rusty! Just a few fragments. I'll have to get up to speed. You fellahs are doing so great!)

30 Jul 09 - 05:17 PM (#2690600)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

I like it, Kat. God knows I have some dust I'm dealing with.

30 Jul 09 - 05:20 PM (#2690603)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

Oh Poet

To possess that anima mundi
To wield that red branch

If I a rat-rhymer could be

To curse and to rail and make strong men quail
To succor the frail and balance on my tail

Like a kangaroo

Another rat, whose poetry
a physical loquacity,
spreads and commands many

Whose rhetoric of power and grace
Controls the pack and the place

To thump about with huge wordy feet
Kick box my meaning at obscurity's face

Not merely anonymous commentary, from me
But hard earth shattering truths

Well aimed and landed hits

Oh a poet to be.

30 Jul 09 - 05:34 PM (#2690609)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

"To thump about with huge wordy feet
Kick box my meaning at obscurity's face"

Great lines, VT. Remind me of the lines

"a poem should be palpable and mute
as a globed fruit"

Words you can hold in your hand. Or in your case, even sprain a finger.;>)

Neil, I am motivated to know more about Francois Villon

"Where are the Snowdens of yesteryear?"....Catch 22, Joseph Heller

30 Jul 09 - 06:04 PM (#2690633)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

Cereal Killer or Serial Liquor (I haven't figured out which yet)

Take 'em all
Seinfeld and his lucky charms
Friends, Ellen - I am not Mad About You
"Silly rabbit sitcoms are the skids"
and all the rest of the prime time
got to syndicated hell
put them in a bowl and just add
a Dairy Coucil public servant
"I won't always look like this cause I'm drinking"
and when they are soggy the Madison Ave hypies won't bite anymore
even K-E- double L- O- double good won't eat them
And neither will Mikey cause he hates everything.

I do everything my Rice Krispies tell me to do.

30 Jul 09 - 07:11 PM (#2690692)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I do everything my Rice Krispies tell me to do.

That is a GREAT line, BTW!! LOL!


31 Jul 09 - 05:27 PM (#2691267)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jeri

Those without the oak door thundered
Yet it was I who spoke 'four hundred'
I wondered, but I should be fine
The last one was three ninety nine
Oh be you counters of the hundreds wary--
You think you're safe, and then comes Jeri

31 Jul 09 - 06:05 PM (#2691279)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

I( can't read that now without picturing, and "hearing", Jeri singing it; cute, but not as impressive as two weeks ago this evening. :-)   Dean

31 Jul 09 - 06:08 PM (#2691281)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

I(can't (figure out where that (parenthsis came from either...

31 Jul 09 - 07:07 PM (#2691304)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Dean, I thought it was the top of your head in a really BIG smile?:-)

Thanks, LeeJ...dust it off, darlin' and keep on moseying.

31 Jul 09 - 10:30 PM (#2691390)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Neil D

Lonesome EJ,
   Thank you. That was my purpose.

01 Aug 09 - 03:17 AM (#2691436)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The three-fingered Dawn, creeping slowly
over the hills and the foothills
of one's cerebellum
bleeds profusely for the loss
of all one believes in
Souls unlit by flame
untouched by passion
and unknown by others
from one place to another
places within and without
places we're afraid to cry about
yet gladly call home
like E.T.
Still, though, the ship courses on
through the blood red
three-fingered waters
headed homeward like a tired sailor
headed homeward
towards Love

01 Aug 09 - 05:48 AM (#2691494)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


I moved by the dust and dust moving in your piece. More about dust, the good and the bad of it please.

We are made of and return to dust and I just reread Philip Pullman's His Dark Materials so have dust on the brain.

Must now look in dusty journals to find my long forgotten mental dust.

01 Aug 09 - 05:51 AM (#2691495)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

In the meantime- this on an old interactive poetry forum I used once to frequent.


A universe moves
Infinitesmally small worlds
Breathed into being
From dust
Swirling slow
Intrinsically connected
A cosmic dance
Like God
Be pleased with
The creation
Be giant against it
But unable to
Control it
It is set
In motion
Nothing to stop it
A black hole
Go get the vaccum cleaner!

01 Aug 09 - 02:31 PM (#2691730)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

I was hoping to earn some praise on my "Three Fingered Dawn" poem. Now I have to own up...I didn't write it. It's my favorite bad poem, read by Bill Pullman to Ellen Degeneres in the movie Mr Wrong.

My apologies to everyone.

01 Aug 09 - 02:43 PM (#2691743)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Thanks, Virginia. I'll see what I can dust off.:-) You've got some really memorable lines in several of yours!

LeeJ, I knew that wasn't you...I *think*!**bg**

Amos, the blue whale has been a big hit with sisters and a girlfriend!

01 Aug 09 - 03:16 PM (#2691754)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


I am a comfort flower
attracting needy bees
drone humming cares into me
what you glean from the visit
I can't say
but I hope you make good
honey from it.

This is from back in the mommy to teens days.

01 Aug 09 - 03:27 PM (#2691758)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

Blowing more dust off old stuff... this written in 2000, a year before I met my partner and surprisingly applicable.


If we were pressed
one upon the other
agitating the ferment
and allowed to cool in
one another's juices
If our combined elements
were further strengthened
joined in the
psychic and corporeal
What distillate spirit
we would be
brandy love
In future to taste
the old draught
and say
"That was a very good year"

01 Aug 09 - 03:29 PM (#2691762)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Neil D

Well EJ, I didn't want to say anything but...
Here's my favorite bad poem, from "The Man With Two Brains" with Steve Martin:
                     Oh pointy birds
                     Oh pointy pointy
                     Annoint my head
                     Annointy nointy
Not as subtle as Three fingered dawn perhaps, but pretty funny.

01 Aug 09 - 04:42 PM (#2691804)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


I wish you hadn't gone and confessed!! I liked it so much I thought I could have written it myself!! LOL!!!


01 Aug 09 - 04:42 PM (#2691807)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Again, my apologies for tainting an otherwise serious thread with silliness, but to get the full impact of Three Fingered Dawn, click here and move timer on the vid to 3:03

01 Aug 09 - 07:10 PM (#2691875)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Well, you are a better and kinder lifter of lines than yon Rapiare--he never apologizes or surrenders credit!!


03 Aug 09 - 06:48 PM (#2693114)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I have made more noise than I should have.
I have roared back at the world, raised Cain,
Stamped my foot. That I thought
It was all a celebration of life
Was a trick of the world,
Which I fell for.

Oh, I have been a bull-roarer, full-throated
Claiming the power of life over stones or dust,
And my kind of meat over others'.
But, what a bamboozle!
Life it self is so still, a zero-being force
And is itself all silence.

That the world is a tar-baby
And I the fool who swung (loudly) at it
Entirely escaped me. Despite this error,
I hope to be released into
The natural briar-patch of silent breath.

04 Aug 09 - 06:46 PM (#2693867)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

A True Story

A true story is an oxymoron, too.
You never can get there from there or here;
The connections are not true,
But are laced in half-way down the ear.
The meanings painted on by wit
Are not in the story,
And certainly not the true half of it.
The morals are bought cheap from fear,
The I, the thou, all loaned by you;
The teller flown in from elsewhere, just to sit.
But that is how we are, and what we do, and we are never sorry.

01 Sep 09 - 09:01 PM (#2714182)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

A Restored Soldier?

He pauses at the counter, hair still
slashed in a military fashion, slightly
bronzed arms poking through a sleeveless
shirt, gripping delicately in his hand a
young blond girl approximately 3 years in
age, her ringlets spinning down her pink
and indigo dress, proudly exhibiting her
to a myriad of acquaintances that approach
him for a momentary visit. His eyes squint
vaguely in the perpetual strenuous pain,
from the continuous pressure positioned on
his surrogate leg....a metallic souvenir of
titanium joins, ball bearings, and shafts,
a memento of the armed confrontation he
left behind. His open visage appears
attuned to home....but what disfigurements
does he possess upon his psyche? What events
did he witness that he will never verbalise?
What forces certain individuals to suffer a
ghastly defacement, but evolve and situate
everything behind him, while others, who
display no tangible mutilations, submit to
the enticing siren's cry of self administered
remedies and alcohol, envisaging the combat
in the shadows of his damaged mentality....
submerging their trepidations and secreting
tears in one more shot? I observe as he and
his petite girl ungainly saunter out of the
supermarket, his upper body inclining left
when his Nike shod counterfeit leg clouts
the gleaming tile floor.


01 Sep 09 - 11:07 PM (#2714251)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

VERY evocative, Nathan, well done. Thanks for sharing.

02 Sep 09 - 08:41 PM (#2715073)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

A free translation of Liebeslied by Bertolt Brecht:

No J.P. had signed a certificate,
No-one said blessings or broke a glass,
Your clothes were the same as on the day we met,
And there was no rice on the grass.
Don't stare at your plate when the food is all gone --
Put it up to wash with the rest.
Our love will go on, or it won't go on,
If not in the east, the west.

07 Sep 09 - 02:19 PM (#2718195)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Here is something strange and
Ancient as treefrogs.
A dozen tongues, meaty and wet
Two dozen lungs, each a damp pink pump
For air, in and out.
Cheeks, two dozen, long or short, thin, or weighted
Ears for coherency's sake. Twenty-four lips, various.
All these delicate cuts. fine flesh assembled in one
Generous box. Informed by
A bright laughing river of common mind,
And impeccable brain-pulse timing for Time
In a midnight hall or family room or hill camp.
Each fire joins in and the corners reach the center, flames licking,
And a swelling music is born, singing "Wade in the Water"
Or come from Alabammy or McDonald's Farm or
Way, haul away! Or the Johnson boys.Or just brek-keerex!
These neat meat pieces driven
By a dozen hearts
Bridging eternity by singing.
Miracles never cease. Even tree-frogs know.

07 Sep 09 - 06:05 PM (#2718375)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Amos: %^)

08 Sep 09 - 07:47 PM (#2719376)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

A Tree Frog in Oklahoma

The pipe was rust encrusted
an upright tunnel in which a tree frog crouched
peering out at the day
He was the size of my thumb
and his eyes rolled in different directions
leafy branch left
human right
He appeared casual and noncommittal
his arms folded under his chin
like a tiny executive taking a power nap
but the skin he wore!
Something of grays and greens
ochre whites and muted blues
and on this surface his eyes like leaves
on a mossy pond
and he was intelligent
he had not builded himself a house
but his intelligence was a thing of a primal nature
for he had fashioned for himself
this skin-cloak
so very like the tree 6 feet away
that had he been there
I would not pick him out
But hiding was not on his morning's agenda
and so he rested, trusting the rightness of things
against the perfect contrast
of a rust red pipe

08 Sep 09 - 09:18 PM (#2719440)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

LOVE IT, are my fav. author!!

08 Sep 09 - 09:21 PM (#2719442)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Beautiful paint job, LEJ!! What wave of karmic connection has led us to tree frogs in this late hour of our lives? Hmmmm?


08 Sep 09 - 09:25 PM (#2719444)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Long live this thread; it's a consistent source of delight.

09 Sep 09 - 01:45 AM (#2719542)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Will you believe it Amos? I never saw your poem until your comment on the tree frogs made me look. Great minds in synch once more. Oh that such powers could be harnessed for the good of mankind.

09 Sep 09 - 02:51 AM (#2719555)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


A restless fourteen year old
An early summer morning
Before the house wakes.
Paddling the jon boat
Across the Chickahominy River
Wraith steams and mists
Waltz over dull grey water

Sitting solitary 'neath cypress trees
Boat bumping 'gainst cypress knees
Watching the ball, wisps float, mingle, fade
Waiting for the sun another kind of ball
To rise, chase the dancers away

A glint off the kitchen window
A reluctant row back
Across now sparkling water
Catch the aroma of coffee and bacon
The surprising jolt of hunger
And the drudge up to the house
In dew sodden sneakers.

(written August 2009 for my Aunt Dot)

09 Sep 09 - 12:31 PM (#2719888)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

A Water Moccasin in Oklahoma

This was not a turtle's head
conning above the water
for a turtle peers in benign curiosity
upon the esoteric actions of humans in his lake
No,this head was attached to a body filled with purpose
as it pushed its rippled path across the surface
A Father, his two chubby sons and small daughter
in the water by the dock
and we shouted "Snake! Get out of the water!"
The chubby sons, nearly to the swim raft
crawled out breathing hard
Small daughter thrashed to the dock ladder and up
While Father sat immobile in his inflatable chair
The water moccasin made a line toward him, fast
"I see him" said the man
brandishing a foam float in defensive mode
and the snake came on, stopping at last nine feet from the man
suddenly still in the water
his black eyes on the man's
Who, sensing resolve in the creature
spun suddenly and climbed the ladder in panic
This the snake watched, then lunged forward into the man's wake
emerging on the other side in cattails, disappearing
The lake was still
but in the deceptive, gentle ripples
we saw the shadows of something beneath the surface
something of dark purpose
sensing our presence as a minor intrusion
which it would ignore, or dispose of,
with equal cold calculation

10 Sep 09 - 12:15 PM (#2720741)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

WOw. Perfect picture. Do I want to know why you were in Oklahoma?


10 Sep 09 - 05:43 PM (#2721018)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: greensue

katlaughing, I love your stuff.

10 Sep 09 - 05:54 PM (#2721029)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: greensue

In fact I think nearly everything is bri on this site. Not so keen on the silly stuff but c the need 4 it.

29 Sep 09 - 12:31 AM (#2733782)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

My Mommy's Sick

She sat on my lap as I read the book to her, her light brown hair draped over my left arm pointing to me the pictures painted on the cardboard pages. She turned to me I looked in her face and saw the shadows of the faces of her mother and father imprinted in her eyes then she spoke to me two sentences to shatter my heart.

My mommy's sick
When she gets better
She'll come and see us.

I held her tiny body squeezing her against my breast, so as not to reveal the tears she invoked in her childish innocence. Yes her mommy is definitely ill lost in a rundown house or an apartment littered with empty cans, food wrappers, cardboard boxes, dogshit, dirty nappies, and human waste as she sits back grasping an aluminum foil pipe losing her soul in one more hit.

My mommy's sick

Or she could be sliding one more needle into her veins feeling the rush in 15 quick seconds as the poison drips through her heart to the haunted centers of her brain tossing the empty needle to the floor to bounce along the pile of rubbish.

My mommy's sick

This once corpulent woman teasing her husband with her affectionate smile as he ran his callused hands along her velvety skin each touch a symbol of the vows they spoke before god.

My mommy's sick.

Now she shuffles down the vacant streets of Spokane a skeleton wrapped in a shroud of blotchy skin her teeth decaying in her virulent mouth as she searches for something to steal or a lustless fuck in an alley to donate more money to her newfound god, a god she loves more than she loves herself, all that came from her.

My mommy's sick
When she gets better
She'll come see us.

I sat and wondered that night as I talked with the girls father as we sat and drank from a bottle of Jamesons on his front porch beneath the autumn sky over Spokane:

Will she ever care again?
Will she ever get better?


29 Sep 09 - 04:51 PM (#2734455)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Jacinta's 5th Birthday Party

There was a young girl who lived across
The blue white capped mountains of the sea
She loved to dance with the springtime sun
Dancing to the eternal song of Faerie
Dancing to the tune of the harp and flutes
Jumping to the air in half time salutes

She closes her eyes, floats off to dreams
Hazy visions of the ageless queen
Oak trees swaying in the buoyant mists
Round the mistletoe crowned grove so green
Whistling, enraptured by the magic of the song
The grass stains the footprints of the throng

She would laugh at the blue painted men
Beating their drums of tightly stretched skin
And the didgeridoo of the Dreamtime
Mingling with the beat note filled din
Each jubilant song rejoicing life
As the salmon reels, playing his fife

The light dampens the strength of the fire
As the sun gives birth to the springtime dawn
And her eyes twitch and flutter awake
Her lips stretch and strain in a morning yawn
When the land of the ever young fades from view
Her dreams won't flag, as she laughs in the dew


25 Nov 09 - 02:41 PM (#2773598)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


Mommy's sick is heart rending. Jacinta's birthday party - love all the allusion to ancient pagan ritualism. The line
       "The light dampens the strength of the fire"

moves me beyond words to describe. Leaves me feebly fumbling for wondrous dreams lost upon waking.

25 Nov 09 - 02:58 PM (#2773617)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

Loblolly Forest

My spirit rallied
    How those pagans danced
    Tossed their hussy heads
    Laughed at thunder cannon and storm swords
    Children, heedless of natural wars

My mind burned
    Drawn at dawn to see the orange fireball
    Rising to light each dew drenched finger
    When zephyrs left from the last night's fracas
    Startle water diamonds from their grasp

My body soothed
    By sultry swaying on Indian summer afternoons
    That first glimpse of movement and hope
    Harbinger of a breezes to come
    First messengers of so welcome a guest

My heart broken
    When the winter ice axed its way through
    Felling my dearest friends by the hundreds
    With splitting thuds and huge rents in the Earth
    Every breath a sickening stench of pine blood

25 Nov 09 - 08:11 PM (#2773819)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Gooood, goood, stuff, Virginia Tam and Amerigin.

26 Nov 09 - 02:46 AM (#2773897)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

Thank you Prince... I am weeping rereading as I wept upon writing it as I wept upon seeing the decimation of my pine forest.

Lost 26 of the 50 odd pines in my half acre plot alone. And weeks after the quiet punctuated by chainsaws clearing up the desolation.

29 Nov 09 - 11:53 AM (#2776097)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Had I no song
Sad and songless I
Would be mad before long.
Were I songless, we
Would not be one nor
Even I be whole alone.
Songless, sad madness
Would descend shortly
And, in such pique
Harrows of harm and
Wild harangues ensue.
Curing this deep hole seek
Solutions or exciters where
Lights and sound run long
And find nothing turned on
The song within but you.

29 Nov 09 - 12:13 PM (#2776112)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: WalkaboutsVerse

Poem 106 of 230: TESTING 4,3,2,1

I've tried to learn to sing a song
Well enough to let a singer
Know the way I found to sing
My lyric-only songs.

That is, just in case a singer
Was in want of a way to sing
These lyric-only songs.

But I'm sorry there's no notes with the songs,
And hope they're okay said, if not sung -

As love songs.

(P.S: writing, via mimicking, my tunes came late,
But they were all in shorthand by 2008.)

From (e-book)
Or (e-scroll)
(C) David Franks 2003

02 Dec 09 - 09:27 PM (#2779115)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Dream Time and Return

I have just returned from there--the Dream Time,
Where each instant is a grand knowing
But of late I seem to find
Getting there's harder, and returning rougher going,
Than it was before I worked for a living.
Once there the walls are gauze, and melt.
Here there are takers; there, each stranger is giving
And every face acknowledges it is yourself
Simply dancing otherwise.

You walk there among forms that are just knowings
The spirit I among the endless possibles, all just right,
All true. The thought is the act in staying and in going,
The walls newly known as they are met, the night
Newly seen dark, the day newly seen light.
Each step gliding, each embrace flowing
Each surprising vision a known sight.
One thought,   a sunlit season's sowing.

In the dream-web thoughts become real
Where souls are as open as your own mind
The days are scripts of the heart's feeling,
You are the author of the rattling time.
And even at the boundary, coming home to land
The blending confusion of transition remembers
Who defined the winds, and decided the sand
And when the flames should be, and when the embers.
What is it, then, convinces you
When the snoring stops and pillows grow hard,
That anything else must now be true
The playground now a prison-yard?

What single token in the shift of times
Betrays your own large knowing
That colors or pain are powers of one mind
Its single grace endowing
On the hard boards and cold kitchen walls of morning?

26 Feb 10 - 11:16 AM (#2850844)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


For the love of poetry can you please, as requested in the past, confine your couplets to your own, more than generous threads?



26 Feb 10 - 04:58 PM (#2851125)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: WalkaboutsVerse

Amos: why not remind yourself of your opening post, before posting another piece?
    David, if a poem of yours has already been posted once at Mudcat, it may not be posted again. That's a standard policy that has been in effect for a long time. Ordinarily, we delete duplicate messages. I will make one exception for you - if you've posted one within a Walkaboutsverse thread, it may be posted in another Walkaboutsverse thread - but not in any other thread started by any other individual. And some of your poems have been posted five or more times - that's a clear abuse of posting privileges. -Joe Offer, Forum Moderator

26 Feb 10 - 05:57 PM (#2851176)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: mousethief

I haven't kissed you
In many weeks
Been too long since
You shaved your cheeks


27 Feb 10 - 05:50 AM (#2851427)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: WalkaboutsVerse

Joe - due to the collapse of a website-host, the WAV threads are now full of many broken links, so it's probably better all round not to use them/close them down; hence, I thought I'd post here occasionally, and wait a while (for more newbies), before starting another WAV thread - until I just read your message, that is.

27 Feb 10 - 02:13 PM (#2851691)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Why would you want to expose newbies to your amazing lack of talent?
    OK, but that's enough. This thread is for poetry, not poetry-bashing. David has agreed not to post any poetry here that he has posted at Mudcat before.
    -Joe Offer-

27 Feb 10 - 02:50 PM (#2851714)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Like architecture foiled by gangs'
Slogans and initials spray painted, besmirching--
So poets disfigure their art with
An insistent spray of judgement.
What would the clean lines show in poems
Without them, skeletal in a sunrise?
Does beauty have an opinion?
Do not be silly.


06 Mar 10 - 11:02 PM (#2858046)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ


in a dream you came to me
and I was only a little surprised to see you
and realized I must have imagined your suicide-
that ridiculous misconception corrected,
you only laughed and merged into the background

but the old vets knew how to wrap it up
in their fatigue caps and shining pins and medals
your written orders to report
to the Post Everlasting
sealed in an envelope and ignited in a silver bowl
your name stamped in bronze and placed on a plaque
an honor guard who fired rifles into the sky
making us all jump as the casings skittered over the asphalt
your brother took up his guitar and sang
a patriotic medley with an odd self-penned bridge
marking to the minute on monday morning
the moment you reported for heaven's duty

in all this, the only moment when I felt your presence
was when the old vets tangled the flagpole lines
and the flag doggedly resisted their efforts
a touch of black comedy that would have made you laugh
and listening to your brother's well meant song
I thought of how you would have liked to have
Ripple, or Uncle John's Band instead
and then the stories were told well, and cleaned up for the occasion
and your friend, who could barely croak words through his tears
somehow told the story about you the best

I kept silent, my stories all wrong for the occasion..
when we stumbled drunkenly to the lake's edge, your leg in a cast
and how you lost your footing and fell in
and then I thought of your old trick
of catching me offguard with your words
that sometimes made me think of you as a true son of a bitch
but you should never speak ill of the dead
and anyway I could never have explained to those wounded people
that it never me made love you less

07 Mar 10 - 02:58 AM (#2858110)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Bravo, Lonesome; bravo.

08 Mar 10 - 01:07 AM (#2858848)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Stunning, as always, LeeJ. Thanks!

01 Apr 10 - 06:38 PM (#2877708)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

A Poet Drowns Alone

He had taken a deep breath and swam
Towards some cloudbank on the horizon
That held the illusion of dry land
And she had wept, and cursed him
And become exhausted with treading water.
Seeing me not far away, her hand reached out
To keep her up, or have me go down with her,
Each choice better than to struggle on alone
and exhausted in a bottomless ocean.

Yeats with his golden bird was right
There is no country here, no island.
At the setting of the sun they will lose sight of you
Nor remember you at the dawn.
Even Cummings' insensible scuttling claws
Lay a great distance and a slow metamorphosis away.
This endless blue vista pales poetry
And can be no captured beauty. The spoken words
Insensate gasps, the unspoken a chain of foam.

I no longer see where she was, no shadow
Fixes her place on a featureless surface
And even my memory is suspect
As I sink without a trace
Sans claws, sans Byzantium
Sans everything

01 Apr 10 - 08:03 PM (#2877756)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

That is without a doubt the greatest poem I have ever read.

01 Apr 10 - 08:04 PM (#2877759)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

April Fool!

(But it's a good one)

01 Apr 10 - 11:29 PM (#2877836)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

That is one of the best to grace this thread, and that's no joke. LEJ, you have The Voice. Treat it with joy.


02 Apr 10 - 12:53 AM (#2877863)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

FP, I'll get even with you! ;>)

02 Apr 10 - 10:19 AM (#2878050)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Young Buchan

[When I visited Headington Church in the early 70s the churchyard was kept locked and could only conveniently be visited by going through the church when there was a service.]

At the Grave of William Kimber

Having paid admission
(An hour's Sung Eucharist)
I left the church's tollhouse
To find one special grave,
Whose newness sparkled in the noonday sun
Setting it apart from those
That moss and rain-stain long since dulled.

What came I here to see?
To left - seventeen stones, rough-hewn and crazy-paved.
To right - the headstone, and below -
Stone bellows, too carven to move,
But that show more clearly than the inscription
How Merrily he refathered English Morris.

What came I here to do?
To stand with camera at the grave-foot;
Record my momentary passing
At the transient memorial brightness
That stands above the ninety-year-old bones
Of never-fading music;
Repay with the little effort
Of ascending Headington Hill
(And an hour's Sung Eucharist)
The stretching of his fingers
To inspire my generation.

What came I here to hear?
Double Lead Through played on stone bellows,
Though almost drowned by squeals of music
From the toll-house organ;
Haste to the Wedding, very softly played,
Lest it offend against the matrimonial rites
Beloved of sixty Oxford Anglo-Catholics
Emerging to their cars and Sunday lunch.

02 Apr 10 - 03:03 PM (#2878300)
Subject: Lyr Add: A SONG: I once met the poet (Bob Clayton)
From: GUEST,Songbob

A Song

I once met the poet in the subway station
(I'd seen him before, so I knew him, you see).
He was standing in line for his daily blues ration,
The same as the other commuters like me.
Packed into the cars, we roared through the earth
Ignoring the people around where we sat,
When the poet fixed me with an eye full of mirth
And sang me the song of the hole in his hat.

I once met a busker while mailing a letter;
I tipped him a quarter and gave him a nod,
And allowed as how he could play so much better
Than most of the other street buskers, by God!
He played on his fife for all he was worth,
Depending on coins in the cup where he sat,
And, fixing me with an eye full of mirth,
Played me the song of the hole in his hat.

So, if you happen to see me someplace
(Now that you've met me, you'll know me, you see),
Don't be surprised by the look on my face,
For poets are known to be somewhat like me.
I may talk about football, or music, or news;
I well may debate the place of the cat,
When, suddenly struck by my musical muse,
I might sing you the song of the hole in my hat!

© 1991, Bob Clayton, Silver Spring, MD

02 Apr 10 - 03:50 PM (#2878334)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam

LEJ - A Poet Drowns Alone took my breath away. I am envious.

02 Apr 10 - 03:51 PM (#2878336)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Dancer's Sonnet

She dances, feet kicking from the dusky floor
Obsidian shoes hammering their adoring caress
With the drum beat upon the hardwood decor
And the lacy hems of her long ebony dress
Smoothly sweeping as if she were gliding
An angelic apparition floating upon each note
Her eyes closed in her shaking head as if hiding
From the dimmed lights shining on her silky throat
Her velvety quivering breasts threaten to burst
Their tender confines with intoxicating wit
Her passion blooms with a hedonistic thirst
Her soul lost in a musical trance as she submits
To the song, to the cadence of ecstacy's brink
She dances with the rapture of her aural drink


02 Apr 10 - 07:28 PM (#2878445)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Amergin, forgive me, but that lovely sensual imagery took me way back to this:

Saturday Night in Everett, Washington

(from a slightly more innocent time, in July 1967,
when they were called gogo dancers, and they
wore complete bikinis)

Sharon's shaking that shapely frame again
Making goosebumps pop up on the skin
Making male minds meditate on sin
Quivering shivering stretching your mind thin
To the unintellectual sensual sexual din
Trembling twitching twisting you within
A graceful animal molded in skin
Sharon's go - go - go dancing again.

07 May 10 - 08:19 AM (#2901972)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Junkie

She reaches into the steel rubbish bin, lined with a pale clear plastic bag. Her dirt stained fingers dig for the aluminium gold, desiring to bestow upon her another nickel toward her next hit. She lifts one soiled arm back to her side, raising it toward the sun, as she pushes it's unwashed sleeve back to her elbow, in a vain attempt to prevent further ruination onto the once white cotton fabric. Her action reveals in the late summer afternoon the bluish purple blotches in her skin, needle point reminders of her soul stealing damnation. She plunges her arm back into the receptacle, rummaging through its fly ridden depths, until she jerks her arm back out. The sunlight glitters on the dull metallic surface of the empty aluminium beer can held triumphantly in her right hand. Her dull eyes briefly glow as she spreads her prematurely wrinkled face, (her youth stolen, another year added by injection) unveiling blackened stubs of decaying teeth, resembling the dark maw of a cavern. She picks up the brown plastic bag fluttering lightly at her feet, and shoves the can within. She drops the bag, and grasps her way once more through the basket, fingers pushing their way pass empty grease stained brown paper fast food sacks, spit adorned napkins, and the alcohol perfumed dribbles of vomit, hoping to strike another five cents, only the search is in vain. Discouraged, she stands up, wiping her gaunt filthy hand upon her faded ragged blue jeans. Then she ambles to locate another bin in her desperate search to score another bag of death's solace.


07 May 10 - 11:33 AM (#2902084)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The surfers learn early
To walk into the chaos
And find infinity on the other side.

Those who can learn to find the wall
Leap up to it and scale the
Crest just as it tumbles down.

Here is grace amid great forces
Tumbling to the floor and swift
TUrning to climb the wall-face again.

Taking the tunnel of green collapse
As a passage to the next leap
Never accepting that gravity could be terminal.

As they return, in the morning
To begin it all anew, like smoky larks on sky,
The surfers learn

Never to trust a man
Entering the water
Who cannot tolerate infinite space.


09 May 10 - 03:09 PM (#2903219)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Heraclitus, e.e. cummings,
Sisyphus, and the fire-giver,
Met for tea around the rock-face
Where Prometheus lost his liver.

He assured his guests quite calmly
It would grow back in again,
And Sisyphus remarked, all kindly,
"Lucky they don't eat your brain!"

This, they all agreed, was lucky!
"That would be an awful shock!
"For the sin of giving fire,
To lose your brains upon this rock!"

"Never fear," said mister cummings,
"Gods are feeble in their schemes.
"What they call a ghost is waking,
Not a hypnotized undream!"

Sisyphus then made excuses,
For he had a rock to roll.
As he left them, e.e. asked them,
"Is he happy in his soul?"

Heraclitus nodded wisely,
"This, I think, is hard to know."
"Even Gods can't reach the answer.
Still, we must imagine so."

Kam Ooeue
Songs of a French Colon
Cambodian Free Press, 1969

10 May 10 - 02:32 PM (#2903871)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Bull Rider

Randy Stoakes eases himself down
feels the momentary grit of cartilage on bone
singing like electricity in a line
that rings in his spine
as the dirt-colored bull lurches against the raw slats
Keet Lawson puts a boot heel on the brahma's shoulder
muttering "nasty ol bastard" as he tries to wedge him out
the echoed squawk of PA says "have a hand
for an ex-champeen, down in the runnin
needs a big ride on ol Hot n' Nasty"
and Stoakes wraps his fist tight and ruminates
on a beer-borne dream he had last night

back on the old man's hard luck ranch by Ten Sleep, he was
stalking a frozen creek for calves,in a lash-locking wind
when he come up on Delbert
his brother dead ten years
hunkered down in the lee of a big boulder
embers from the coffee fire scattering in the whirling air
across the outstretching white crust of snow
without speaking, he sat a busted spruce log, and took the cup from Delbert

The bull lurches sidewise again and the quick pain brings him back
in time to hear the bell, watch the gate snap open
feel the bull spring in the long leap, spinning the ass-end in a kick
Randy lets himself swing on the loop
but then the animal reverses with a sudden twist
flipping the cowboy into air, palm pinioned in the rope
he has time to hear the crack of his wrist
before he blacks out
staring at Delbert's crooked smile
tasting bitter camp coffee
and waiting for the Wyomin wind to slack
so they can head down the draw to warm beds

14 May 10 - 08:13 PM (#2907221)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Sveta In The Promised Land

Hope glimmered brightly in her future, it was a
Desire for an education, a hope for love, a teacher's utopia
A hope for a family of her own, so she kissed farewell
To her parents, and left the damp somber Eastern land
She called home and followed the illegal pied piper's song
Across the green billowing sea to the Promised Land

In her uncle's nightmare, she found her dreams scattered
One by one as she was beaten, her blood vessels shattered
Beneath the smooth pale layers of discoloured skin
Bones fractured through repeated "trips down the stairs"
Her spirit assassinated as she suffered rape after rape
Trust died in her eyes every day in the Promised Land.

The title deed of her enslavement was transferred
At a poker table in an underground gambling den
Her new master insinuating the corruption, the toxins,
The junk she smoked, snorted, injected, to alleviate the agony,
To asphyxiate her sorrow as she turned tricks on the street
His financial gain, the capitalistic dream of the Promised Land

Her youthful beauty eroded with each hit, with each screw
As her body gradually deteriorated from the drugs
And the abuse, the misuse inflicted upon her sexual being
The hooded haunted look hollowing out her stare
Until she recognised her abandonment on the avenues
A piece of refuse scuttling down the gutter of the Promised Land

Fear mesmerises her, a snakelike coercion, imprisoning her
As she patrols the burgeoning Russian communities
Of Portland and Vancouver, too ashamed to return home
Sometimes at night in a dark alley she cradles a photo
Captured of her when hope still glimmered in her eyes
The illegal emigrant's reverie, the dream of the Promised Land


19 May 10 - 12:27 PM (#2909980)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

strong stuff, Amergin

19 May 10 - 02:08 PM (#2910035)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Jaysus, Amergin, you really turned a corner with that one; I have never seen the like from you before. Well done!


22 May 10 - 05:42 AM (#2911865)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Thank you both very much. I should say that Sveta is, unfortunately, a real person. she was interviewed in one of the local alternative papers. It just plain broke my heart, when I read her story.

16 Jun 10 - 07:14 PM (#2929449)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

From Deda:

Put not your faith in princes
Whose only faith in you
Is that you'll play roughs and ditches
So the princes can play through.

DonÕt place your hope in bankers
Who only hope for wealth,
Who trade in guns and tankers,
And profit, pounds and pelf.

Waste not your love on lawyers
Whose hearts have turned to dust,
Those Ivy League marauders
Steal the pie and sue the crust.

May my faith not diminish.
Let my hope not erode.
Let love be the start and finish
And the entire road.

(c) Rebecca Jessup 2010

17 Jun 10 - 02:12 AM (#2929593)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver


Oh love that steals my dreams,
That wilt not let me rest by night or day.
That makes my sadness weep,
Now that she has gone thither, far away.
Oh love that steals my sense.
That takes away all reason from my brain.
That makes me think of nought,
Except that I should be with her again.
Oh love that steals my life,
That rests the knife so easy in my palm.
That opens up the wound,
To let the blood, like some relieving balm.
Oh love, 'tis that I die for you ,
The blood slips from my body oh so fast.
Here lain upon your lonely grave,
Is where I deign to breathe my very last.

Mike Hill. February 2009

17 Jun 10 - 06:00 PM (#2930131)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

A madman to his old love made a phone call one year.
Said the madman to his old love, "How I wish you were here!
For the past is full of shame, and the future full of fright,
And if ever I had need of you, I have need of you tonight."


18 Jun 10 - 04:41 AM (#2930322)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,CaptainFarrell

There is a Pints and Poetry session at Saddleworth Folk Festival well worth checking out run by Mick Cartwright with help from Sid Calderbank

19 Jun 10 - 04:28 PM (#2931196)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

School Prayer

Now I sit me down to pray
to the guy who made the universe in 7 days...
Free me Lord from the lies that pass
for truth down in my science class
that dinosaurs lived near here
back more than a million years!
We know the earth's only 5,000 years old
in Genesis the Bible tells me so.
Don't try to tell me that my teacher
knows more science than my preacher.
Those dinosaur bones just aint that old
they're skeletons of angels, I've been told
And all this crap about evolution?
God didn't put that in the constitution.
And the anthropology we been readin?
Weren't no neanderthals in the Garden of Eden.
And the Jews and Buddhists and non believers
the wicked muslim turbanned deceivers
their parents are mostly ignorant fools
and could use some Jesus in the schools.


19 Jun 10 - 04:52 PM (#2931206)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Lonesome, you demonstrate a powerful ability to permeate and see the viewpoint of the most compressed and frozen minds. I do hope each entry has an exit strategy!


20 Jun 10 - 03:35 AM (#2931369)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Compressed and frozen minds!... are they the ones that haven't the ability to take everything in without questioning or criticism?

27 Jun 10 - 03:35 PM (#2935651)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: wysiwyg

Author of the below, Ellen Waterston, was Saturday's offering on The Writer's Almanac. I just cannot keep it to myself.



After ten hours of trying
the instructor undid
my fingers, peeled
them one by one
off the joystick.
"You don't need
to hold the plane
in the air," he advised.
"It's designed to fly.
A hint of aileron,
a touch of rudder,
is all that is required."

I looked at him
like I'd seen God.
Those props and struts
he mentioned, they too,
I realized, all contrived.
I grew dizzy
from the elevation
from looking so far
down at the surmise:
the airspeed of faith
underlies everything.
Lives are designed
to fly.

27 Jun 10 - 07:44 PM (#2935741)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

You need two out of three -- altitude, airspeed, and a brain. -- Saying among pilots.

05 Jul 10 - 11:39 AM (#2940110)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Why is a fern in a wet morning
More beautiful
Than, say,
A rusty truck?

There is no comparison.
Truck kills fern,
Fern eats truck.
Each one loves the game.


05 Jul 10 - 12:47 PM (#2940143)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

When I was in my
First cause,
I had no God, and
I was cause of myself.

Meister Eckhart

27 Jul 10 - 11:28 AM (#2953201)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

"Where the liberal-humanist sensibility has always held the literary work to be a form of self-expression, a meticulous sculpting of the thoughts and feelings of an isolated individual who has mastered his or her poetic craft, a technologically savvy sensibility might see it completely differently: as a set of transmissions, filtered through subjects whom technology and the live word have ruptured, broken open, made receptive. I know which side I'm on: the more books I write, the more convinced I become that what we encounter in a novel is not selves, but networks; that what we hear in poems is (to use the language of communications technology) not signal but noise. The German poet Rilke had a word for it: Geräusch, the crackle of the universe, angels dancing in the static."

From this article in the Guardian about the novel "C".

11 Aug 10 - 01:18 PM (#2962993)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Secrets of Women

The practiced angle of the neck, the chin
And always of the eyes--all are learned young.
Using the hair to call or to dispel, tossing it for some
And for others presenting a dark shield.
The use of each tooth, in combination, well-practiced,
And how the lips must form to spell temperatures.

Liquid joints design the edited message
Scrutinized in rehearsal for degrees forward, back,
The illustrating turns, peer-reviewed in overnights.
The arc of presentation, detailed and designed,
Combines with an array of chosen curves
Into the certainty the practiced eye assures.

The painted tips and ends, and every measured beat
OF lash and finger and toe contrives
To flavor moments hot, or cold, or sweet
Or bitter as only the artist may decide.
The cold kiss arched aloofly back,
The passioned offer pressed
The echo of the wrist and lips
And deadly answer of a hardened breast--

All make a puzzle erudite,
For scholarly minds to puzzle on
While in the pouring rhythm of the street
THe tide and song and measured dance move on.

13 Aug 10 - 01:37 PM (#2964464)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I come back here from time to time
And read the long history of
The charming hearts and sunspot minds
Of poets churning for years.
What a climate they have built!
It rains and shines on the
same side of the street,
Even late at night. Sometimes
Noon is dark and rivers
Run up to the corner cops
To ask directions!

Chains of miracles tie
The frothing mad middle down
KEeping it
Hogtied by magic, prevented
From renewing the mediocre!
Keep it up, you golden elves,
Sequoias of the long tongue, nova-crafters!

13 Aug 10 - 02:20 PM (#2964512)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Hey Amos. Back in Kentucky when I was a kid, I saw plenty of them truck-eating ferns.:>)

13 Aug 10 - 06:32 PM (#2964689)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

However you wriggle
When speaking of people,
There's little that's stable
Or even quite true.
Affection is fickle,
And fairness is feeble.
With both, if we're able,
We might make it thru.

(Was once going to be the end of a song.)

26 Aug 10 - 01:19 PM (#2973353)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Wyoming Transplant

She met him in college
the scion of a blueblood Boston clan
and loved him for his dry humor and moist skin
What he saw in her
was a kind of elemental force
a straight forward disingenuous directness
and the way her eyes lit up in laughter
After graduation they wed
and he took her East to a big house on the Squanacook
where the water lay placid and green
like a late-summer pond in a Rock Springs feedlot
and the hills, cool and green in Spring
hedged the sky to a steamy patch in Summer
After a year or so, even the relentless high plains wind
seemed like a happy remembrance
She climbed big hills in ridiculous hope
of seeing the distant purple and yellow
of the faraway Wind River Range
Once, a Ford pickup with golden cowboy plates
lay just ahead at a Boston traffic signal
and as she passed, laughing, called out
"take me home!" to the startled driver
whose brown rutted skin creased in a grin

After the divorce, she stayed on from habit
growing pale and weak in the wet winters and soggy summers
Until, at age 56, and leaving two grown children behind
She sold out, loaded what was left
and moved to a double-wide on a dry, rutted arroyo
in the wide country East of Rawlins
and in that raw and sandy soil
that defied her attempts at a rose garden
she herself took root at last
and flowered, thin and bright
as Indian Paintbrush

26 Aug 10 - 01:33 PM (#2973368)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Oh, Leej! Beautiful and can I ever relate! Exactly the way I felt out East, at times. Some of your best lines in that one!! Rog will enjoy hearing it, tonight. Thanks for sharing.


01 Sep 10 - 09:56 AM (#2977466)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Morrigan's Song

A soldier boy came home today. His camelbak lightly jouncing against his body as he walks into the arms of his young bride. She weeps into his chest, tears of relief and joy. He holds her, he kisses her, he laughs with her, but his outward gaeity never quite stretches into his eyes, always wary, always watching. They never losing the hard, damned stare, have squandered the essence that made him young. His youthfulness was burned away in gunpowder smoke, in blood, and the screams that wake him from his post traumatic dreams, his bedsheets fermenting with the night sweats. She senses the alteration in his spirit, that he is no longer the unseasoned man who knelt beside her before the altar on the day their union was blessed before God. He is no longer the boy who marched to the beat of the Morrigan's song.

A soldier boy came home today. After months wasting away in a military hospital, relearning how to walk, how to function , how to become a contributor of a capitalistic society. He feels the ghost pains of the arm and leg abandoned on the side of some desert highway, unnamed casualties of an IED explosion in the mutilated carcass of a military escort. His artificial titanium government issue prosthetics dully capture the arms of the summer sunlight, as he jerkily steps across the black pavement, the damp heat seemingly liquifying the distant tarmac with the caress of the Georgia sun. His rolling stuttering gait carries him home, away from the Morrigan's song.

A soldier boy came home today. His ebony casket draped in the red white and blue colours of his chosen nation's flag. His sobbing mother , near to collapsing, her quaking hands clutching a sodden tissue smeared with black mascara, dampened with tears. His stunned father stares at the pall with red fringed eyes. His wife sits on a folding chair, her face streaking with make up stained tears. Each drop a memory of their brief years together. She winces at the rifle volleys fired over his body, honouring the soul of a young man, though scared beyond anything he ever felt before, flung himself into the Morrigan's extended arms amidst the battle frenzy of rifle shots and hand grenades. The honour guard to heaven, in their smart dark blue dress uniforms, hand her the triangularly folded flag, which she grasps to her quaking bosom, the tear drops soiling the cotton fabric. She gazes up for a moment to spy a raven inspecting the proceedings, his beak open, cawing the farewell note of the Morrigan's song.


01 Sep 10 - 05:12 PM (#2977857)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

An Artist's Devoted Touch

Ribbons of curling burgundy hair
Dangles before her countenance
Obscuring the auburn freckles
Splashing her cheeks, buoyant kisses
Lavished the Northwestern sun.

Shrouded behind this portiere
Of ringlets stained by a sanguine sunset
Reclines a shuttered eye, where
Four glossy lashes protrude through
Specifying the location of her vision.

The aquamarine illuminating aurora
That is the allure of her spirit,
The effeminate ethereal charm
Ensared by an artist's devoted touch.

A tenuous fragment of a smile
Emerges from the tightly woven
Flesh coloured lips, as if perceiving
She'll be fastened behind a glass pane
Confined in a dusky wooden cage,
Her glamour beguiling generations tomorrow.

15 Sep 10 - 10:59 PM (#2987719)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


There is
no choice but
To sing where you
That is where you
sing from.
The words must be clear, but
Otherwise are unimportant
If only they are true enough.
The notes should be
for the place
from which
you are singing.
Beyond this, you
need only stand there,
where you sing from.

15 Sep 10 - 11:31 PM (#2987728)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Explainer passes judgement
On your case.
Over his left shoulder he
Is whispered to by
A host of notions, like angels.
Armed with these whispers
The Explainer concludes
That you will die.
Not for crimes that you have done
But for requiring
Although it is in your power
To erase the court,
Sentence, charges, and all,
You--in your holiness--refrain
And march with dignity
To an inexplicable end.

16 Sep 10 - 05:16 PM (#2988250)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


08 Oct 10 - 03:22 PM (#3002743)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

National Poetry Day: unlock the mathematical secrets of verse

Science and poetry were once closer than they are now, writes Steve Jones in response to National Poetry Day.

By Steve Jones
Published: 12:00PM BST 05 Oct 2010

"Thursday is National Poetry Day, a fact that once would have been of much interest to scientists. In the 1700s several poems appeared that passed on a scientific message. The best known is The Loves of the Plants, by Erasmus Darwin, who in 1791 set out in verse an account of the sexual habits of the vegetable world. He used heroic couplets, in which the rhyme pattern is AA, BB, CC and so on (for the sensitive plant, for example, he wrote that "Weak with nice sense the chaste Mimosa stands,/ From each rude touch withdraws her timid hands;/ Oft as light clouds o'erpass the summer glade,/ Alarm'd she trembles at the moving shade"). Byron, a rather better poet, liked the form ABABABCC and in his epic Don Juan even manages to squeeze in a mention of Newton ("And this is the sole mortal who could grapple/ Since Adam, with a fall or with an apple.")

Overblown as Erasmus Darwin's verses might seem nowadays, the point of poetry was pattern; to use a strict structure of rhythm and rhyme as a framework for words of passion or pedantry that would become fixed in a reader's brain. Robert Frost put it neatly when he wrote that "Poetry without rules is like tennis without a net".

Poetry, in other words, is mathematics. It is close to a particular branch of the subject known as combinatorics, the study of permutations – of how one can arrange particular groups of objects, numbers or letters according to stated laws. As early as 200 BC, writers on Sanskrit poetry asked how many ways it is possible to arrange various sets of long and short syllables, the building blocks of Sanskrit verse. A syllable is short, with one beat, or long, with two. In how many ways can a metre of four syllables be constructed? Four shorts or four longs have just one pattern for each, while for three shorts and a long, or three longs and a short, there are four (SSSL, SSLS, SLSS, and LSSS, for example). For two of each kind of syllable, there are six possibilities. Do the sum for metres of one, two, three, four and more and a mathematical pattern emerges. It is Pascal's Triangle, the pyramid of numbers in which the series in the next line is given by adding together adjacent pairs in the line above to generate 1, 1 1, 1 2 1, 1 3 3 1, 1 4 6 4 1, and so on.

As in a great poem, hidden within that elegant structure are deeper truths that touch on apparently unrelated things; on fractal patterns, on the theory of numbers, on primes, and of complexities too deep to be accessible to mere mortals untrained in the mathematical art. One useful property is that Pascal makes it possible to ask in how many ways it is possible to arrange a group of objects, be they footballers in a league, or lines in a poem...."

From the UK Telegraph

16 Nov 10 - 12:21 PM (#3033611)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Part of the Answer

What is success?
Grasping at icicles,
Harvesting the drips,
Eating gold.

Aren't beans more substantial?

You look at each others' store of
chocolate, with envy.
Who could possibly eat so much?
There aren't enough days in the
year to wear all those clothes even once.

Don't you have anything to love?
Nothing to treasure?
Nothing to hold in your hands, or your arms,
Or even stroke with your fingertips?
Nothing so comfortable to wear that it molds
to your body from long use?


16 Nov 10 - 12:22 PM (#3033612)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Come sit down here on this box.
I'll give you some thoughts,
and my attention.
I'll stay up late and write a letter,
one you can hold in your hands
and feel the paper crinkle
against your fingers.
It's the attention that really matters.

To how many people in your life did you really pay attention?
Did you really never see that golden light
streaming onto the concrete
through the turning leaves?
How do you think you'll recognize it now?
When the shell is gone, you'll be hollow inside.

So sit outside in the sun or the rain.
Then at least you'll be filled with
light and water.
And something planted in your soil
can grow.


16 Nov 10 - 12:23 PM (#3033613)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

From: Eiseley
Date: 15 Nov 10 - 10:43 PM


Open a door into a quiet, changing room.
Sometimes it has no roof, no walls.
Sometimes it is dark and still, dusky light with a comfortable couch.
Still other times it is simply a window with a raindrop trailing down, following almost but not quite the tracks of countless other drops,
And the quiet of the room behind the window.

Who is there, sharing that vast, enclosing, freeing space?
There is a presence, benign.
Malignancy can't find the door, doesn't even know to look. But if he did, the way would be indistinguishable in his dark corridor.

But for you, the outline shines with a silver light.
Step inside. Everything is waiting for you.
Lining the walls are the placidly smiling Buddhas, their eyes twinkling with delight and welcome.
But don't be shy. They're in their own rooms, after all.
This is the in-between space where everyone and no one is.

One is waiting, ready to let you see through his eyes.
You can feel it, can't you---
The acceptance, the peace, the air like breathable music?
Veiled though you are, and shrouded in blind mortality,
Here is the space between.
Come, wander and rest,
There's a door on this side, too.


16 Nov 10 - 12:23 PM (#3033614)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

What is it?
Longing mixed with involuntary music,
Upwelling from the heart of things,
Unfinished, hidden, partially obscured.

Why is there no resolution?
It takes a kind of perseverance
Beyond just the regular flitting from thing to thing.

Dig deep into the recesses.
Find the glittering prize and bring it out into the light.
It's worth showing to the world.
Things shouldn't remain hidden.
That smacks of ingratitude.

It doesn't matter if you can't do it all.
At least do some,
And do it well.
Don't leave one treasure covered in muck
Because you're so anxious to find the next.
These things take time.

And in the end there will be jewels enough,
Sparkling in starlight.


16 Nov 10 - 12:24 PM (#3033615)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Words of the Sculptor

We will now discuss Death,
That changing of one thing into another,
A reality beyond which we cannot see,
Stuck as we are in the undaunted hereness of now.
We work upon substance
As firm as marble, as fragile as porcelain.
Don't go into the next room.
There is nothing inside---
No floor.
Take this chisel. Make your scratches on the rock.
Let the people coming in later wonder what you meant
By your wild profusion of grapes.
In a little while you can go stand
At the door of the floorless room
And toss in a shard.
But don't expect to hear it clatter at the bottom.
The one I threw is falling yet.


16 Nov 10 - 04:50 PM (#3033835)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The above poems graciously contributed by Mudcatter poet Eiseley.

A stellar addition to our glowing galaxy.


16 Nov 10 - 05:06 PM (#3033851)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

WOW!! Thank you!

16 Nov 10 - 05:28 PM (#3033869)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Leadfingers


19 Nov 10 - 06:21 PM (#3036316)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Chain

He lifted the bottle to pour
as she flicked a crumb from her dress
He could just walk out that door
and be finished with the god damned mess
with nothing here to adore
no hunger left to be blessed
just anguished rumination
and a longing deep in his chest
chained to something he abhored
it's her...or no one...he confessed
He couldn't have loved her more
and she couldn't have thought of him less

19 Nov 10 - 07:29 PM (#3036350)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

Old Love

Three years we lived as one,
I, the Master, she the Mistress,
She did my bidding, answered my call-
Enveloped me through the long nights,
Gave my days purpose.

A being apart, yet part of my being.
I met her as a boy, left her as a man.

Time passed, calendars turn,
Ten years, twenty, twenty five,
We met once more,
She is bedraggled, unkempt, uncared for,
A bag lady, the smell of age about her.
I remain in her presence silently for a minute,
Then, as I turn to leave, I know,
She doesn't remember me.

19 Nov 10 - 07:36 PM (#3036353)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: McGrath of Harlow

Here's a ballade I constructed for a thread below the line about this week's royal wedding announcement (with a couple of minor changes):

The Times were hard, the portents all were grave
Little to hope for, everything to fear,
Then from his door rushed out a smiling Dave,
'A Royal Wedding will take place next year
Rejoice good people - brush aside a tear -
Forget your troubles on this happy day.'
One thing at least, we were not born to wear
These chains of gold, as wealthiest of slaves.

Once more proceeds the pantomime we crave,
The transformation scene we all can share,
All play a part, ours is to cheer and wave.
The curtain rises, see the happy pair.
Charming Prince Will and Katherine the fair,
For our delight, as always is the way,
Don once again, while thousands stand and cheer,
The chains of gold, as wealthiest of slaves.

It seems to me the lady must be brave.
The precedent indeed is passing drear:
A fairy tale where fortune could not save
An ending that was messy and unclear.
But turn your mind from that unhappy shade
A crown awaits, and hanging for you there,
The chains of gold, as wealthiest of slaves.

Prince, and Princess-to-be, your fate is clear,
A life laid out from cradle to the grave.
Do what you will, you cannot choose but bear
Your chains of gold, the wealthiest of slaves.

20 Nov 10 - 07:25 AM (#3036597)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

For some reason the last line in Old Love didn't print.
It should end with:
What ship remembers her old Skipper?

20 Nov 10 - 08:19 AM (#3036622)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Poo

i needed a poo
but gambled on wee
a bonus brown
fell passed my knee
i broke my nose
swooping to catch it
on the lip of the bog
just beside the faucet
a deep red streak
ran down the drain
and upon the floor
an unfortunate stain.

20 Nov 10 - 12:44 PM (#3036784)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

That's beautiful, Captain Morse.

And poo, what can be said about your little nugget? Truly, it belongs in the crapper.;>)

19 Dec 10 - 06:52 PM (#3057520)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

My son just sent me a neat link to recordings of readings of RUMI. Thought some of you might enjoy them.

21 Dec 10 - 11:07 PM (#3059059)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

For Joan

It was with a tear strained phone call,
Screeching it's insistant banshee song
The kind you answer, knowing, feeling
The worrisome trepidation of farewell,
That I was told your spirit had gone,
Though I felt you depart the night before
In a moment of sudden vacant despondency
In sharp contrast to the joy and laughter
I experienced in the company of those I love
Just a bare few minutes previously
As your phantom deserted the frailty
The sickness of your corporeal body
For one free of sorrow and agony
Joining a presence greater than ours.
Then, we accompanied the weeping choir
Singing wails of our loss, dear and empty
As the memories of the cursory hours,
Each one a grain of sand, trickling
Through the desperate grasping fingers,
As if they were faded photographs
Flipping through a dust stained album
Such as that time you.....
Or that time when we....
The recollections of hearing the song,
The music of your impassioned soul.
The air hummed from your essence
Has ebbed to an indistinct murmur
Attenuated by the sounds of the wind
Bearing you away. It is that strain
Your tune, that will be missed until
The day comes when we harmonise
Together once more, raising our voices
Chanting the Dreaming to the shadowed sky.


12 Mar 11 - 12:26 AM (#3112120)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Sing backwards;double clutch and reverse.
Reversing the words to songs
Verse on verse
Opens one hundred gates
Into ten hundred worlds.
Music follows.

12 Mar 11 - 02:19 AM (#3112144)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

In fresh and tranquil valley, as I lay beside the meandering stream,
My eyelids gently met and there I slipped into a dream.
I dreamt of better days, of days of sunshine, sea and sand,
Of trees, of bushes, flowers and hues that beautify the land.
Long glasses full of lemonade or vanilla ice cream and fruit,
Aunties apple dumplings, with custard, chewy arrowroot.
Picking those wild strawberries and some crunchy hazelnuts,
Catching hands on blackberry thorns and getting several cuts.
Climbing trees, oft falling out, not breaking any bones,
Trying to skim the water with those nicely flattened stones.
Hearing mummy shouting "Come on kids it's time for tea"
Mouths began to salivate wondering what it would be.
Sadly the dream ends abruptly as a bird begins to sing,
I lie in the sun contemplating what the rest of the day will bring.

10 May 11 - 10:21 AM (#3151397)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Not sure when I wrote this, but it does not apply nowadays:-)

It's a hell of thing to sit on the edge of the bed at night
the sky is black and the stars don't shine
And your partner is out of sight.

15 May 11 - 03:42 AM (#3154309)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

I posted this before not too long ago...but I'll go ahead and put it here, where it is suppose to be:

A Kiss of Farewell

It was all completely stated with a brief kiss,
Warm moist lips upon cold, pale flesh,
The tangy stench of death's corruption
Infiltrating the atmosphere, embracing the husk
You departed but a short time before.

It was a kiss, infused with the memories
Cursory flashes of moments, miniature one act plays
Continually presenting you by my side,
Trading anecdotes, mirth, and lamentations.

It was a kiss, that said all I could bring myself to say,
And all that genuinely demanded to be divulged,
As it spoke of love, and the selfish reasoning
Entreating you to remain, to abandon your path,
To the arms of those who went before,
Just to grace us with more fleeting seconds
Of your comforting physical presence.

But it was a brief kiss that stated it best,
Moist warm lips greeting cold cadaver,
Vacant of the specter it once sheltered,
Whispering words of parting endearment:
Slán abhaille, safe journey home.


15 May 11 - 08:23 PM (#3154744)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The other Hank

The Singer

The singer begins with starting breath,
The birth an abstract silhouette.
Both beginnings in perfect balance,
A butterfly with fake falcon talons                
          Help buttress up a mis-placed peace.
New lessons learned upon release,
Soft beauty granted floating by,
Still germane indeed if it catch the eye
And open up a whole new world.

The song sits aware, no time remaining.
Cold console flickers once the switch is thrown.
Pressure building without constant draining,
Explosions valid from the force alone.

Explosions need be sweet to contradict
Pale pithy pathos we self-inflict.
For no heated malice can endure for long,
Betwixt the singer, and the singer's song.

27 May 11 - 11:49 AM (#3161330)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Suck Up

Suck up, because your soul is lying.
Cower, cow, flinch and puddle there
At the edge of your black-out curtain.
It would be nice to know
You are bullet-proof, immortal
Having nothing and being all,
Unable to lose.
This conviction, although true,
Is untenable on common ground.
So take it in
Suck up, because
Your soul is lying.

05 Jun 11 - 01:58 PM (#3165529)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Old Suburban Man

I have not fought, I have not died.
My fists are unscarred, and none
Have moved my throne before the tide,
Or seen my wings strive for the sun.
Now, the temples are gone gray
And you and I need hardly speak
To know what we have left to say.
The long muscles ruled, but now are weak.
The ticking creaks, and even down is hard.
The place is ordered, but does not often speak;
Little of the world exceeds the bed and yard.
And on reflection, there is too much left to give.
But I have not fought, or died, and only may have lived.

05 Jun 11 - 07:44 PM (#3165668)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

We are the riders on the horizon,
where the dawn curves down
We are pursuing the far horizon again,
disappearing from your sight.
Our dust and faint outlines fade from your sight
As you stand, starting another dreary day and
Wishing you could disappear with us
Riders across a different horizon.

05 Jun 11 - 08:29 PM (#3165698)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

I hope those are not reflections of how you are feeling, Amos? You are too young for all that, eh?

05 Jun 11 - 10:55 PM (#3165750)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

No, dearie, not me. But I have to at least let the dark side have a voice in order to expose it.


06 Jun 11 - 01:35 AM (#3165791)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

great stuff a

03 Jul 11 - 02:35 AM (#3180532)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Between the crevices of daily tasks
My thoughts slip, far too easily, away
As silver fish that dart 'tween blades of grass
From sunlit streams to rivers deep in caves.
They gather there, to ask Aunt Jenny Wren
About the Suffragettes. And Pete? That book.
In patient tones, they carefully explain
To Shakespeare how a modern camera works.
And with my thoughts, the minutes slip away,
I do not finish all the things I ought,
And suddenly, I've reached the End of Day,
Returning home from being lost in thought.
It's quite a realization-- once again:
Surrounded by Imaginary Friends.

03 Jul 11 - 03:36 AM (#3180542)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Poetry page on facebook which I started some time ago.

16 Jul 11 - 12:56 PM (#3188830)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Grass Planned

When you go where the grass is planned you do not wonder my love.
Trees too, by design. A specialist did it, thinking
Of lessons inherited.

A different sort of mind complied
And drove the blade hunger,
The leaf demand.

The roots figured it out
Without lesson
Inheriting instead, fire

A.H. Jessup
San Diego

16 Jul 11 - 01:13 PM (#3188837)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Why Poets are Sung

I am of the mind that a good poem
Is an exploding escape
That says, at least on occasion,
The tight bars may stretch, even melt, and
The prisoners dance free just
For a while.

The sheriff refuses
To discuss things
Beyond his jurisdiction.
Still, on occasion,
His prisoners dance,
Keeping their names secret from him.

09 Aug 11 - 04:27 PM (#3204833)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The soul is a temptress and loves to look at beautiful forms
and the eye is the guide of the heart.
The heart commissions its guide to go and look to see what is there
and when the eye informs it of a beautiful image it shudders out of love and desire for it.

Frequently such inter-relations tire and wear down both the heart and the eye as is said:
When you sent your eye as a guide for your heart one day,
the object of sight fatigued you
For you saw one over whom you had no power
Neither a portion or in totality,
instead you had to be patient

~ Imam Ibn ul Qayyim al Jawziyyah

09 Aug 11 - 06:10 PM (#3204905)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

For Morgan and Luna

In the Idylls of the Summer
Was a boy and trusty dog.
They wiled away the hours
In the backyard on a log.

The red of hair of one
Matched the other's shaggy coat
Their love was true, complete,
This poem their "Mama's" note!

kat lafrance

10 Aug 11 - 12:42 AM (#3205102)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Good stuff, Amos. Dancing prisoners, hey?:>)

and Katlaughing...what can I say but


10 Aug 11 - 09:40 AM (#3205295)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Waking up surrounded by it
Clears the mind and makes the problem simple.

First, to get out.
Then to get the fire out.
Then, some sleep.

Then to awake
Surrounded by fire.

08 Nov 11 - 05:39 PM (#3253105)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Bodies in Corrosion

The body's corrosion and the reef's building
Are death drawn in gravity.
Neither the stars nor the living heart
Erase the lines of new dying, or old.
Under the currents, the new heart, thrilling
To explosion and considerate suavity
Finds every meeting a reason to depart.
Even the tides are cold,
Against the soul's explosion.

15 Nov 11 - 08:04 PM (#3257794)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

Now, in praise and hope of thee,
I lift this cup from thy dark sea,
and if I spew thy salt on light,
I trust thy mercy and thy might
To make a fitting guest of me.


16 Nov 11 - 03:00 PM (#3258296)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Will Power

It isn't catching
It's fishing
Suspending negativity
Willing suspension of disbelief
The Uncertainty Principal
A hook and the fish's mouth
Seldom occupy the same space and time
Zen of fish
Zen of no fish

You fish better when you're hungry
Hoping for the Big One is foolish
I remember Ireland Lake
Little tarns full of golden-cutthroat hybrids
You could catch them on a piece of tin foil and a treble hook
About the size of a large sardine but tasted
Pretty damned good
Cooking them in foil saves weight

Caught a brookie on my first cast at Shadow Lake
Caught a sixteen-incher at Lake Aloha
Had to cut him in pieces to fry him up
Swear by those yellow rooster-tails

Hiked alone into the Yolla Bolly Wilderness
Pitched my tent in a meadow
At the base of a cliff
A small plane flew over
And bombed the tent with tiny trout
The pilot was having a bad day
I filled my pot with tiny fish and threw them in the water
That evening I
Had to move my tent because of the yellow jackets
Feasting on the fish
Fish out of water
Don't live too long
A kind hiker gave me several panther martins
Using a spinning reel on a fly rod
I could cast the length of the lake
75 by 70 yards
No wonder the pilot missed
What I took out about equaled what I put in

Trolling is easy
But productive
Get the right speed
Get the right depth
Use the right lure
Rubber snubber on lead core line
Four of five colors
Knock em dead
Trout and kokonee
Catch those stupid hatchery trout
Trolling in the rain at Huntington Lake
I caught pneumonia
Fishing in the rain
Do fish catch pneumonia when it rains?

Salmon fishing is cold
Used three-pound iron drop-off weights
With spring-loaded sliding retainers
Catch a shaker
Lose the weight
Fingers freezing when you put a new weight oj
Standing outside in a freezing drizzle
In a new down jacket
That would smell forever of fish

The first time I hooked a yellowfin
My knot broke
My heart broke too
Chalk it up to experience
The next one held
Tied a good Palomar knot
The deckhand snagged it with a gaff
And dropped it!
"Free-spool!" he yelled
"It's in Free-spool"
I guess he liked the drama
Or wanted a bigger tip

I hooked a big dorado
He jumped I swear fifteen feet
And grinned as he threw the hook

Fishing for tuna
I snagged something like a Volkswagen
Broke my 40 pound test like a spider-web
"What was that!"
"Probably a big-eye!" said the deckhand
Deckhands know everything
Just ask them
They'll tell you

I don't kill Golden Trout anymore
They are way too beautiful
In Pebble Creak you could catch a cutthroat
Nearly every cast
Stupid Yellowstone fish
Got broken off on eight-pound test
That got my attention

Trolling in Edison Lake at sundown
Something as big as my leg hit the floating rapalla
The rod bent like a bow
And the lure flew by my face
Just missed catching me
Brown trout's revenge
If fish could laugh
He was smiling

If you catch them
You clean them
The Tao of fishing
Birth Death Redemption Faith Hope Resignation
Sunsets rainbows fog forest-fires deer sweat
Frogs snakes big beaver swimming by your leg unafraid
Butter melting in the pan no salt
Cold Beer in the rocks
Tie it down good
The worst day fishing beats the best day working
Piscatorial karma
Wishes into Fishes
I will make you a fisher of men

18 Dec 11 - 12:44 PM (#3276051)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

A time - crazed life;
Just add water, boil,
And a wireless link to
Everyone, everywhere,
For instant, mad existing.

Somewhere the center
Breathes slowly
Over lost thoughts like
Water over forgotten stones.
Nothing is more persistent.

San Diego
December, 2011

18 Dec 11 - 02:50 PM (#3276124)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Raedwulf

Coo! Is this still going? Here's a couple of things I wrote almost exactly 12 months ago, then...

Warm Inside

The fire's hearth is filthy; the window boards are missing;
The bookshelves are not ready; some skirting boards not kissing
The walls quite as they should be. The chimney breast, its plaster,
Another coat of paint? Would not be a disaster.

Around the door there's plaster and paint that shouldn't be there.
Not there? A door that should be! The painted walls still quite bare.
Don't ask about the dining room (unless you'll give assistance)
The kitchen, a saga all its own, whose ending's in the distance!

And yet...

The house remains unfinished, the front room still half-furnished,
But here I sit on sofa new; of solid oak, well burnished.
A glass of wine (now beer), a pad, a pencil - I'm a poet!
(I'm no such bloody thing at all, I'm a wordsmith and I know it!)

But here I sit, scribbling doggerel verse, forging words to fit the space
Whilst gazing into the fire's coals, seized by the Muse's grace
It's hardly Wordsworth, Keats, I know! You all think I'm demented.
But it's cold outside & warm in here & I feel quite... contented.

Jack Frost
A tapestry in ice, unmeant.
(I don't know where the spider hid)
Greeted me yesterday morning
(There's eggs under a certain lid)

Slender, frosted, spiky, soft
(Surely all four can't be done?)
Graced my window as day was dawning
(Cold and misty, without sun)

Yesterday was minus six!
(But windless, therefore not so cold)
Today, plus two. Oh! Plus two more!
(Golfers weather, if I may be so bold!)

So Jack Frost's drapery was melting
(A constant symphony of drip)
A world of white, brief turned to colour
(But Jack has not yet lost his grip)

This night is the longest, Solstice,
(And Jack, for now, he still holds sway)
Tomorrow's day, though, will grow longer
(Spring! And summer! On their way!)

So though the world may yet stay cold
(Those eggs are in the compost bin)
The world still keeps turning, turning
(Next year - frosted webs again!)

18 Dec 11 - 09:37 PM (#3276304)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

How would you manufacture such a sea
Of pictured hurt
With rich doubts like deep whales
Singing confusion?

Born of storms too great,
Such pictures-- brineshrimp recollections, and
Speculative tides, tide-rips of worry ebbing
And sins flowing back.

Along the shore the iodine-weed nods
And the sands and sea collide.
To build such
Is the stuff of recalled nightmares
When morning grows too hard to deny.

San Diego
December, 2011

18 Dec 11 - 10:22 PM (#3276314)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

Amos, I hope your recent poems are not a reflection of personal depression. Well-written, just rather grim.:-)

Raedwolf, I love them both, but esp. the second. Perfect for this week.

Will Power, I had uncles who would have applauded your fishing poem. Well-done!

19 Dec 11 - 08:57 PM (#3276887)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Thanks, Kat. No, I don't think so. I feel rather cheerful, actually.


19 Dec 11 - 09:04 PM (#3276893)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing


25 Jan 12 - 05:55 PM (#3296270)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Games and Stars

On the man-fat pitch and the iron-green grid
There are no gains. Conditions,
After all, are not painted on,
Lime on grass in clean stripes of boxed fury.
Tongues rattle ceaselessly
Firing sounds at tiring minds
With every turn of the sun
And the moon
And each of a trillion, trillion stars.

San Diego, January 2012

28 Feb 12 - 05:00 PM (#3314788)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Two Shabby Poems

The marauder's skies are colored
Much like your own; only
Hard as shells, slow to admit weather,
And bullet-proof, coated in sins.

#    #    #

The equations of sanity require symbols
To hold in rivers and flame.
The fires do not care how they were lit
Nor whether their burning makes
Sense to hearts.

In perfect places, the fires are damped down
For enduring, more kindly warmth.
But such are useless mathematics
Where the equations of living sanity
Are missing.

San Diego
February 2012

28 Feb 12 - 06:38 PM (#3314815)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

The Cargo Cult

Here where the pilgrims walked on knees
up the grooved stone ramp to where
the Oracle held court, unknotting
the twisted threads of the Three Fates
Here let us prop up our plastic tablets
and invoke the Sacred Prophets of the Market
Here where the ancient ones carved Hymns
to Apollo who slew the serpent of the gods of chaos
Let us clamp on headphones and see
if we can dial them up again
Here where the initiates courted Life and Death in masks
and were cleansed by blood offering
Let us commune with our devices and seek council concerning
a good Taverna with exceptional dolmades
They, who built such structures as these
who carved these columns and wrought these marble gods
receiving grace and favor from them
Are we not the same as they? Are we not due as much?
So set up here a cardboard altar
extrude an oracle of polystyrene
and let's get these blessings bestowed
while there's still time for Lunch

28 Feb 12 - 08:34 PM (#3314866)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

LOL, LEJ. Visitor to Delphi, I assume? I know the feeling.

28 Feb 12 - 10:05 PM (#3314887)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis


Now we must part,
my sweet Ilona:
I must leave
for Barcelona,

and I must travel
there alone,
and every day
in Barcelon

I'll bear a heart
that's like a parcel
of sorrow that
you're not in Barcel;

yet though we stay
apart so far,
you'll still be with me
there in Bar,

for with love's constant
eye I'll see
your image every
day in B.

Jon Corelis
Laugh if you will: Comic and Light verse

28 Feb 12 - 10:18 PM (#3314890)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Bill D

Withered aster
Premonitions of disaster.
Dark clouds racing-
Silent moon-
Trying not to rise too soon.
Last geese flying
Leafless tree-
Again, November has to be.

written August, 1957- 18 years old

just found it in an old notebook- I gave up poetry soon thereafter

28 Feb 12 - 11:03 PM (#3314906)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

That's beautiful, BillD. I think you shouldn't have given it up!

Thanks for the new ones, Jon, Amos, and LeeJ. I enjoyed them.

29 Feb 12 - 12:33 AM (#3314930)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Jon, I think you left a verse out

Though I languish lonely at the spa
I'll see your face in the steam at Ba

29 Feb 12 - 09:24 AM (#3315064)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis

Maybe it would have been more challenging to do one letter at a time ...

Jon Corelis

13 Mar 12 - 10:11 AM (#3322239)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis

Children with guns

In the church they worship spiders, on T.V.
Christ with a neat goatee foretells the rain.
Men drunk on anger oil their blood machines,
women ingest the pennies of their dreams,
and children with guns
dance howling on the entrails of their brothers.

At the Union Hall they're slurping poison soup.
The flesh rots from their faces. "Who are you?"
they ask each others' mirrors.
Men scream at machines in isolation,
women can't catch their breath, and children with guns
take aim at the morning.

Jon Corelis
Death of a Nation: political poems

23 Mar 12 - 12:16 PM (#3327707)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis

Elegy for the Sixties


Jon Corelis
Need I say more? Epigrams

23 Mar 12 - 12:19 PM (#3327710)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis

This page is getting so long it's becoming cumbersome. Maybe the pre-2012 postings could be put in an archive thread?

Jon Corelis

23 Mar 12 - 05:51 PM (#3327908)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Have you read the MOAB thread?

You can open the thread from latest to earliest by clicking on the blue "d", or open it in segments/pages by clicking on the blue asterisk *.


23 Mar 12 - 06:21 PM (#3327920)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Jon Corelis

Thanks, I always wondered what those things meant.

Jon Corelis

25 Mar 12 - 11:00 PM (#3328917)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Ebbie

Wow. I've spent the last couple of hours reading this thread- and will have to go back more than midway in order to linger.

I don't write poetry but KT today told me of this and I urged her to post something she wrote this week. KT, the ball is in your court...

18 Apr 12 - 06:33 PM (#3340118)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Important Thing

How many things
Are important?
And in what order?
In a rage of broken glass
and bleeding hearts
A single dish,
Put away clean,
Can be the only answer.

18 Apr 12 - 06:44 PM (#3340121)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

A Number of Bells

Is there a bell for every sailor cold on black water,
And dull, middle-aged paper twat ashore in sports shoes?

For every heart in the fog, a single
Far-fetching bouy-note
For finding some sort of shore?

One bell for each
Innermost ear?

Tell me that.

18 Apr 12 - 06:53 PM (#3340127)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Uncollected

Your attention may stop at the wall,
At any small object,
At a space too far, or at anything you name.
It may be arrested by evasion, a lie,
Or the hunger of not-knowing.

A lizard decides for himself
When to flee and how
To avoid the roots of roses
And dodge the broccoli.

18 Apr 12 - 07:02 PM (#3340130)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Big Continue

Stopped by the mere word,
Hand on the door
And insanity knocking,
He understood, just then,
Why men build things slowly.

So he turned and picked up the
Things she had thrownÑ
The ashtray, the sturdy shot-glass
And the childÕs bearÑ
And apologized.
He told her she
Had always been right.
Took nothing back,
But started everything forward.

A.H. Jessup
San Diego

19 Apr 12 - 07:23 AM (#3340329)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Micca

Posted this on another thread but thought it might belong here too

Every day in my head
I hear Music,
Folk and Blues
Like a sub-text,
The Soundtrack
Of my life,
So that I put
On the radio
To streamline it
into one tone
or style, otherwise
it is a mix of Gaughan,
Mozart, Judy Collins
Azanavour, Haydn
Django and Handel
Walton, Trenet, Ives,
Ketty and Copland
But sometimes
When the dark
Creeps up to the window
And the Peace descends
I'd settle for endless repeats
Of Four thirty three of
John Cage
©Micca Patterson

19 Apr 12 - 02:33 PM (#3340524)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Made me curious about John Cage's 433, micca

19 Apr 12 - 03:12 PM (#3340548)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Micca, I hadn't realized I have been subconsciously performing this piece in my sleep for years.


21 Apr 12 - 03:33 PM (#3341399)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Counting As Well

Not results, only.
We will count as well
Heart beats;
Cycles of hoping wildly;
Imagination in majestic flares;
And every swift, dark silence,
As also one.

21 Apr 12 - 03:40 PM (#3341403)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Who Fired Up?

Who fired up the Black Ball Line? Who
Bought the canvas by miles,
Called for the timber cut and the pitch and brass?
Who told men to report for sea in the smell
Of new planks and tar?

Who named the ports, drew up
The frightening courses, worried
The storm-cloud horizon?

Ten thousand names are gone,
Fallen along with his own,
Out where the wild cascades tumble off
The map, at the edge of the world.

But all the sailors remember
The kind of man he was.

21 Apr 12 - 05:44 PM (#3341439)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

YES! We did know him, A! Well done.

23 Apr 12 - 07:34 PM (#3342325)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Border Lands

In dreamscapes the motion is better
than even the moviesâ€"
sensory, surrounding, scented, haptic
and felt to the quick. It’s breathy, with all the chemicals.

Continuity, though, is poor. Now becomes then, twice.
In the part of the dream you hadn’t
Dreamed yet you
Are in a field of teacups
Asking where the pumpkins came from.

Someone who could answer does not
And you remember this with frustration
That is somehow familiar.

We must talk to the script writer.
But the motion, in dreams
Is wonderful.

23 Apr 12 - 07:35 PM (#3342327)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Long trucks carry cars
All shiny to their
New places. Once set free,

Cars carry warm bodies
To and fro
Hither and also thither.

The cars go in and the cars go out
And go away and sometimes
The cars stop.

The bodies they carry climb
In and the bodies climb out.
They go off and sometimes the bodies stop.

Bodies carry being and
The beings too go in, go out,
They fade off, return, appear anew without stopping.

Carried by beings, thoughts
Run on, run out, dry up and spring up.
And sometimes the thoughts stop.

01 May 12 - 06:23 PM (#3345868)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

On Parts of Speech

I should not be such a friend to adjectives, as though
Listening to a bad poet all day.
They fooled me back when into cutting up time
And the world
Believing the pieces were salvation.

But I had once learned that nouns were the enemy,
All lies, and secretly hostile.
So the adjectives found me
Easy prey.

Dancing with verbs, delightfully
Distancing myself from the solids
Would be a wilder way
To God things up, shake,
Rip and rock the loitering moments.
Rocketing laughs more than
Strolling with nouns,
Knocking the tocks off their pins,
Salvus sum.

18 May 12 - 05:18 PM (#3352595)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Three poems from a "cycle" I'm currently working on; I expect the finished cycle to have five pieces, akin to acts in a play. These are the three I've written so far:

The Monster Challenges


You stand there, with my file in your hand:
A long white coat beneath fluorescent light.
Your voice is measured, your expression, bland
To thinly veil the arrogance of Might.
With scientific words, you speak your part;
Your glance betrays a superstitious heart.

As though I were not even in the room
(And near enough to catch stale coffee breath),
You lay out (for my mother) all the doom
Of raising such a daughter so bereft.
For I will never walk as humans can:
Upon two legs, and tall, across the Earth.
With crutch tips as my hooves, I'll cross each span
In trotting gait, because of star-crossed birth.
With practiced stroke and swiftly moving pen
(Just as you've done with other children's lives),
You mark me down as something less than "Man."
To fit me to a list that you've contrived.
You circumscribe my life in dark blue ink.
My flesh and mind are mapped (or so you think).


The day is warm, the playful breeze is light;
The sun (just like a lover at the gate)
Has called the flowers out -- and you, as well --
So even mundane tasks are pleasant things.
And then, you see the shadow in the crowd:
A monster in the corner of your eye.

An insult made of flesh and bone -- obscene!
Far worse than any word or gesture, this:
Audacity in daring to exist
Denying everything you've learned is true.
And you are Good. You've learned what elders taught.
About what makes a Man, and makes a Beast,
And how to tell an Adult from a Child,
And how to keep your own place in the world.
The monster in the crowd is gone, although
The shadow that it cast? It lingers, still --
It's lodged there, in the corner of your thoughts:
A seed that's far too dangerous to sprout.
But you are Good, accept this as a Test,
Enclose what's wrong in pity, and move on.


Protected from the mainstream's quickened pace,
We're gathered here like flotsom in the weeds
United just by coming to this place:
"The Campus Registry for Special Needs"
As different from each other as from those
Who tell us where to sign, and where to go.

We know that we are lucky to be here,
And neither locked away, nor even dead.
And yet, in spite of Love, we still have Fear:
The knowledge: "I'm a monster" in our heads.
We're set apart, like coins in some machine --
Been counted, sorted, "valued," all our lives.
We've felt the stares of pity: cold and keen,
And yet, the pity rises in our eyes.
For we, as well, have learned what elders taught
On how to know an Adult from a Child,
So our identities are fragile -- caught
Between what's in our dreams and what's been filed.
We wait together in this quiet hall;
We glance. But do we see the Truth... at all?

I'm also making a series of videos of me reading them aloud (with text-on-screen). Here's Map-Maker and The Order of Things.

...I've yet to decide on an illustrative image for the third piece... a hallway just seems too vague.

18 May 12 - 06:21 PM (#3352621)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

Capri Uni, your body may need crutches, but your creative mind soars up there somewhere.

18 May 12 - 06:53 PM (#3352639)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Lonesome EJ

Capri...all I can say is WOW. Nicely done!

18 May 12 - 07:03 PM (#3352640)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Last Guest was me; thought I was logged in


18 May 12 - 09:32 PM (#3352670)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Dean -- I thought maybe it was someone who had dropped their cookie (as long as you follow the five-second rule, though, it's all good!).

Um... "Your body may need crutches, but your imagination..."

Are you sure you didn't mean to type 'and' instead of 'but'? ;-)

EJ -- Thanks! These poems were actually inspired by four section-titles in a student's Masters thesis on Medieval literature that a friend of mine found online*:

The Monster Challenges Boundaries
Monster Questions Man-Made Classifications of Order
The Monster Creates Anxiety
The Monster's Role in Identity Formations

So the next one up is "Identity." And the one after that will be a wild-card, simply because something tells me this sequence need five for symmetry's sake (maybe to get to the quintessence?).

*The entire thesis is titled: When a Knight meets a Dragon Maiden: Human Identity and the Monstrous Animal Other; and it's in that paper I learned that there's an entire literary school of thought called "monster theory," which intrigues me... but not enough to go back to school...

29 May 12 - 12:53 AM (#3356669)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

The Monster Challenges


Just as a rowboat scrapes the pebbled beach
I drift back from my sleep to feel the bed.
Receding like the tide, just out of reach,
The dream slips, half-remembered, from my head.
A nightly riddle posed, always the same:
It asks me who I am, beyond my name.

The question's asked again out in the crowd
Reflected in a stranger's troubled glance,
As though I were an insult spat out loud,
Or warning 'gainst the fickle whims of Chance.
Philosophers in centuries long past
Wrote cunning answers all about God's plan:
Which creatures He made first, and made the last,
The proper rank and order meant for Man.
But creatures like myself did not belong
{We were the curly brackets of their set}.
To illustrate, by living, all that's Wrong,
So people learn God's Truth, and not forget.
A doctrine set in stone (or so it seems);
It cracks, a little, nightly, in my dreams.

Also, I've got a video for each poem, now. They're all in a playlist on YouTube, here: The Monster Challenges: A poem cycle

Ideas are starting to coalesce around #5...

29 May 12 - 10:11 AM (#3356797)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,Guest Charles Macfarlane Harrison

As I have published my poetry already on my own website, rather than regurgitating it here, perhaps I may be forgiven for linking to it instead:
Charles Macfarlane's and others' poetry

30 May 12 - 09:02 PM (#3357460)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Some very strong talent in there,Charles!


30 May 12 - 09:06 PM (#3357463)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

The Naming of All Things

The naming of all things
Is the law that
Has no name --
Required for the right
To own a mind,
And to be seen as sane.
Otherwise the cold night
Can make you blind
On the nameless raw light
Consume you like
Huge blues dining on brine,
Deep in a sleepless sea.

Then there are the times
Without names,
The heartÕs fall, star-crossed;
The moment when harm is denied;
The radium archetypes
That make the species mad.
The moment of being almost known,
The knowing of hawks
In the brave brain of a lizard. Things
That deserve a name do not
Always earn one,
And the art is lost, and
Some songs are never sung.

01 Jun 12 - 04:29 PM (#3358138)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Plurals Alone

It is the plurals that will lie to you—
"And" is the prime deception.
The joinery of minds is uncaring,
A reckless cohesion.
Be not beguiled.

Neither is the one alone
Quite true.
The pulse and fire do not seek correction.
Unconscionable sharing
Lies behind the arrant lesion
To fail the whole soul
Singing in the wild.

07 Jun 12 - 07:44 PM (#3360690)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Better Lying

Oh, if I were a better
Liar, I would be rich,
And weak as a slug
In sunlight.

Never mind that--I
Would spin you tales and you
Would come under my spell.

I would at least conquer
The world before I melted
In my puddle of fictions.

Could I fool everyone?
Even myself?
You bet!! I'd yell out
My magic.

I'd dance the liar's boogaloo
And create flurries of power
Until I melted.

08 Jun 12 - 05:07 PM (#3361027)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


May Christ, from his battered and forgotten yew
Look down (or over, up, across, or through)
Upon these harried, hurried shells
Who strive, with overcrowded minds, to make themselves
Some modicum of honor, peace, or truer time.
Or, and he can not do, may some other mind
Able to master such a point of view
(Surely not me. And probably, not you.)
Offer them only a moment to confess
That they, being so much more than this,
Agreed, step by small step, on so much less.

A.H. Jessup
San Diego

24 Jun 12 - 10:16 AM (#3367373)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Half a boot, old sock
And hand grenade
Eat the sand and
Drink the sun-hot blood.

A virgin's tissues
Crumpled in tears
Move to a landfill from a bedroom
In a town in Oregon.

Some say it was the mother's fault,
The boy never good enough
The girl endlessly made wrong.
But in the end,
One improvised explosion
Is as good as another.
A.H. Jessup
San Diego

25 Jun 12 - 01:02 PM (#3367803)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Across the magic sandbox crawl
The wordly beasts,
Playing at tongues.
They offer phrases, commas, connotations—
The tutors of us all. Born never-young
They herd the restless living eye
Into the thin corrals of line and stop,
Ignoring what they do, and why.
They do not often laugh,
Nor ken, nor sense, nor know within, nor wot.
And this shall be their epitaph –
"They thought."

27 Jun 12 - 04:15 PM (#3368806)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Waking Bodies

The wildest dances break out
In the stillest hours.
As the bodies are all resting,
Something leaks in from without;

Flying fine flesh, on fire,
Flails in the moon,
And all the tides reverse!
The still lagoon stages a chaos
Of dancing!

Alarms—vile, clangorous and cruel—
Dismay the dancers, dispel the dream,
Disperse the dreamers
In a deadly beautiful morning call
To arms, legs,
And the broken rest.

A.H. Jessup
San Diego

28 Jun 12 - 03:43 AM (#3368970)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Doug Chadwick

Write no epitaph for me
Warm words carved on cold stone
In a local cemetery
Slowly getting overgrown

If in, say, one hundred years
People read the lines you'd leave
The words would fall upon deaf ears
For no-one would be left to grieve

If things I've done improve the lot
Of people I will never see
Then it matters not a jot
That they are unaware of me

My legacy is in my deeds,
The ones that help the world along,
The only epitaph I need
Is that other sing my songs

© Doug Chadwick, April 2012

28 Jun 12 - 06:13 PM (#3369254)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

I like the steadfast, understated rhythm of those lines, DC.

Frostian. :D


29 Jun 12 - 12:15 AM (#3369391)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

The Monster Challenges


There are no monsters underneath the bed
(Or so they say). They say there never were.
And when a baby's born with half an arm,
No chanting priest foretells the death of kings.
Today, we know the scientifc truth
And we've outgrown those silly, antique tales

(Or so they say). And yet, we're all afraid.
There's something churning underneath our feet.
This modern world is bursting at the seams,
And All agree that Order must be Kept.
We've turned to science, and learned ten thousand ways
To know just who is normal and who is not.
We raise our funds, we look for cures, invent,
And teach the child to wear a plastic hand.
And though we know it's fiction, we still cheer
The knight's triumphent ride, returning home;
At last, the dragon's dead, and now hear heart
Is safely bundled in his handkerchief.
The monsters must not ever win the fight.
We only let them try, to prove who's right.


In looking down upon my naked self:
My lap, my scars, my hands, and crooked feet,
My posture's slant, my elbow's inner bend,
I sometimes wonder what it means to see.
This "looking at myself from where I am"
Is not at all like looking at a stone.

The words that echo through my memory
From all the languages I've heard -- or seen,
Like forest leaves that shift in every wind,
Their shadows hide -- disguise -- the things I see.
It's through this tangled forest I must go
To find my truth, and know just what I am.
There is one word-- it catches like a thorn.
And though it stings, I trace its twisted growth.
I find a path, and there I find the root:
That "monster," once, meant "Creature Born Deformed,"
(Something like me?), "a Warning From the Gods--"
One shadow pierced. This light can answer fear.
And here's the fruit: it's heavy -- rich with seed.
I'll plant one for myself, and start anew.

29 Jun 12 - 09:25 AM (#3369529)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Thank you, Capri!!


29 Jun 12 - 11:23 AM (#3369583)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

You're welcome, A! I think my "Challenge #6" and your "Naming of all things" play well together. :-)

29 Jun 12 - 12:00 PM (#3369603)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: ranger1

On hard benches within grey walls
The women sit like broken dolls
And I wonder in this dingy room
At the the fates spun from this loom

    If I catch their eyes, they look away
    Their dreams were stolen yesterday

There is so much sorrow here
The price they've paid is oh-so-dear
Their dreams and hopes gone from their eyes
Nothing left but moonless skies

    And if I catch their eyes, they look away
    Their hopes all stolen yesterday

For all that fear, he's just a man
And I'm not afraid to take a stand
We're all given grace at birth
It's time to remember your forgotten worth

    Catch my eye, don't look away
    I'll return your dreams someday

Tami Bill
November 2007

I wrote this at the Getaway, after sitting with my mother at the courthouse with a lot of other women all waiting on a judge to sign their protection orders. They needed a voice, I needed to give them one.

29 Jun 12 - 01:33 PM (#3369647)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


What a rough row to hoe!!

I like your defiant song.


08 Jul 12 - 08:19 PM (#3373746)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

To cheer myself up in today's heat:

A Fable (of sorts)

A Tortoise once said to a Hare:
"I challenge you, Friend, to a dare.
Let's run a foot race
And see who claims first place
(I believe 'twill be me)," he declared.

Now, the Hare thought this was a great joke,
For, in running, he never once choked.
The race day was set,
And the animals met,
And the bettors, they all went for broke.

In a vineyard just over the hill,
A Fox wanted grapes, for his fill.
But, try as he might,
Could not reach their height,
So decided they're nasty as pills.

Just that moment, the hare sauntered by
(A confident gleam in his eye)
"Ah! Now there goes my lunch
(Not some sour grape bunch)!"
And so after the Hare, he did fly.

Two entered the race on that day;
Two finished. And here's how it played:
The Hare won the deal,
With the Fox at his heels.
And the Tortoise? He met with delay.

And that is where this story ends.
I'm afraid there's no moral, My Friend.
But if you insist --
It's as simple as this:
"Carrots are straight, and Bananas have bends."

08 Jul 12 - 10:41 PM (#3373801)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Doug, Capri, and Tami: Wonderful stuff, all. Two by Capri that cut right to the core, and that last that is just so much fun.

08 Jul 12 - 10:53 PM (#3373804)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

LOL...thanks for that, CU, made me laugh. The others are your usual uncompromising honesty which is one reason I love reading your stuff...not that there is anything usual about them anyway.

Tami, beautiful voice. Good for you.

09 Jul 12 - 12:09 AM (#3373823)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Tami -- I've read your piece a couple times through, and what strikes me most is the bitter irony of it all: That the women who've been hurt by placing their trust in someone who claimed authority over their lives must rely on the authority of a stranger to save them. How resilient their spirits must be!

Kat and Frogprince -- Thanks! After the three months of writing All Serious Sonnet(-like) poems, I needed to Let Loose with some Limerick Lunacy! ;-)

09 Jul 12 - 04:24 AM (#3373850)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

A bit of poetic art crticism

{Here is a link to the painting concerned

                  Thoughts inspired by François Boucher's
                   Mademoiselle Louise O'Murphy c 1750

                      Now some are heterosexual
                     And others they are gay
                     And some just need thoughts
                     Of amorous sports
                     To get their rocks away

                     But can there be a man of any sort
                     In all male humankind
                     Who wouldn't long to land
                     A walloping hand
                     On that sublime behind?

                              Michael Grosvenor Myer
                                11 June 2008

25 Jul 12 - 04:03 AM (#3381158)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

I'm not posting mine least not in written form. This is a recent one of mine.

The Paradise Rose

25 Jul 12 - 11:18 AM (#3381300)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,amergin

Annie's In Astoria, Oregon

25 Jul 12 - 11:45 AM (#3381314)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Amergin --

Ooh, I like that!

26 Jul 12 - 05:47 AM (#3381645)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Thank you! I took a class, and learned some valuable tips. In fact, it fired my ambitions...look for something in the future.

15 Aug 12 - 01:12 PM (#3390539)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,amergin

Here is another one of mine: An Ordinary Woman

15 Aug 12 - 07:17 PM (#3390689)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Peter Stockport

This came to me in a garden....
I recited it at the Midway last week in a Pam Ayres voice..#
hope you like it

I wooed an Australian slut,
An plied her with beer and tequila,
I asked her for sex in a hut,
I wanted a shed shag Sheila.

Don't we all.

25 Aug 12 - 12:30 PM (#3394936)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Where is the universe located?
Where, your own intuition?
Is the knowing of the known
The container. or contained?
Dragonflies insist the questions
Are meaningless.
The carp persist in quiet
Singing among the lilies.


17 Sep 12 - 01:50 PM (#3406265)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

How far can you reach toward the
Brightest light?
How deep can you see, before your heart
Begins pounding too hard?
How far can you reach when your hands
Are always tied back?

How softly can you sing to cut
Through the sound?
And can your voice
Bring down tall walls

17 Sep 12 - 02:27 PM (#3406282)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Market Pages

Sales fall on the news of broken hearts.
Volumes drop like dinosaurs sinking,
Thrashing and crying loudly, helpless lizard-rage.

In the market, hammers break, and eyeballs
Evaporate. Minds, and hands,
Shower fire on the souls
Who trample the sidewalks
In a city of walls.

17 Sep 12 - 02:41 PM (#3406290)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Finding the Higgs

The boson of mass is
Everywhere and has no place.
It kindles the best and worst of times, and spaces.
Offers congealment, contraction, to the mind
And drags weary souls through muddy time.

Finding an enemy in normal places
Is sufficiently hard;
Following into the far caverns where the bosons tunnel
Is far worse.
Thus, when the Devil walks into your yard
You will not recognize his book and verse.
Use the azaleas as a shield, or know something smart.
But his mass will carry the field,
and draw down the brightest heart.

26 Sep 12 - 07:28 AM (#3410355)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

I was booked to read poetry at an art community in Portland On 11 September.

Featured Reading @ Milepost 5

26 Sep 12 - 07:30 AM (#3410357)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

This is the latest one I have written. I wrote it for my cousin's 3rd birthday.

Leo The Lion

25 Oct 12 - 04:46 PM (#3426044)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Dawn Promenade

Walking the streets before sunrise
In this Western suburb, I saw
A thousand dreams being pursued in darkened houses,
Littering the hot air of a thousand heated beds.
In them were desire and retreat and
Beings, some with trumpets and some with zithers.
Some of the men spent, some fired and overwrought;
Of women, some in fear, some dreaming of creation,
Or of being desired. Some were talking and some
Simply dancing in worlds.
The homes were dark, the rooms were dark;
Dark painted chariots waited ,with their engines unfired,
Some paid for, some never to be,
Hoping for slow instruction. Within, the worlds
Unfolded at the speed of thought
Revealed joys, damnation,
Sad forgotten lies and worries
Laced with trumpets and with zithers.
Why the music did not leak into the streets
Was a mystery I took home with me.        

A.H. Jessup
San Diego

26 Oct 12 - 01:00 AM (#3426236)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

My latest, written in response to a "Blog Carnival" theme: Birthdays, anniversaries, and other days of celebration and commemoration

"If" and "When"

If my grief over Mother's death were a person,
This would be the year it could buy its first drink
With friends at the bar
Slamming the mug down in triumph,
Froth crowning its upper lip.
Then, maybe, there'd be singing.
Or, maybe, my grief, taking after me,
Would be a teetotaler, content
To drift on the rising tide
Of friends' besotted laughter.

If my grief over Mother's death were a person,
I'd make a wish that its friends,
When drunk, would only laugh --
Opening their arms wide for tipsy hugs
And slurred "I love yous!"

I remember the year my grief was born --
Seems like only yesterday, sometimes.
I, a grad student a hundred miles from home,
Rolling across campus in my motorized chair,
Would sing aloud, not caring
If my spastic throat Pulled the tune off-key.
I needed to sing, to give my voice
The power to cut through helplessness
Like the prow of an ice-cutter
Through the North Atlantic:

"My life flows on, in endless song
Above Earth's lamentation.
I hear the sweet, though far off, hymn
That hails the new creation.
Above the tumult and the strife
I hear its music ringing.
It finds and echo in my soul.
How can I keep from singing?"

Of course I got noticed.
Moving through the cafeteria,
The song's final notes trailing behind me,
I'd overhear: "She's such an inspiration --
Always so happy!"

The irony sparked
Even through my grief-fogged mind.

This woman: my mother,
Daughter of a mathematician,
Graduate of the Bronx High School of Science,
Asked me to work magic on her behalf --
To arm myself with Hope and Vision,
To battle at her side from a hundred miles away.
Whether she believed the Power of Thought
Could alter the progress of her cancer,
Or merely deflect the pity and disgust
That Oncoming Death inspires,
I do not know.

But when I was two, this woman, my mother
Refused to be cowed by the hospital psychologist
And saved me from a life behind institutional walls.
When I was eight, she taught me
How to write a letter of protest.
She hand delivered it to my teacher
At the PTA meeting, that night.
The next morning, I learned that the authority of justice
Could make the authority of position tremble.
When I was thirteen, in the spring of 'Seventy-seven,
We rallied together under hand-painted signs
So that I (and others) could roll across campus.

(While waiting for the elevator,
An acquaintance finds the courage to ask
If I dream of walking, or hope for a cure.
I say there is no cure. And anyway,
I'd rather spend my numbered days
Out in the world, writing stories, or teaching children,
Then behind the walls of a physical therapy gym.
My answer earns rebuke
For 'giving in to my disability')

When I was sixteen, Mother fought our town hall
For a wheelchair access ramp,
And cut the ribbon at the opening ceremony,
The mayor smiling at her side.
"I will support you in anything
You decide to do," she told me, years later --
"But it is up to you to decide it."

And so, for her sake, I sang
And told no one the reason.

"The water's wide, and I can't cross over.
And neither do I have wings to fly.
But give me a boat that will carry two
And both shall row
My love and I."

Reincarnation, she once said, happened
When daisies pushed up from the grave,
And bugs ate the flowers, and birds ate the bugs.
She assured me that the energy of her life,
(Like the energy of an electron) would be conserved --
And if I needed to, I could find her
In the downbeat stroke of a crow's wing.

In those first years, my grief demanded
All my attention, and care.
Now there are long stretches of silence between us
But it still wanders home in the middle of the night
Waking me from dreams.

For twenty-one years,
I have watched for the shadows of crows.
And told no one the reason.

Until now.

A video of this poem (with photos of Mother, and one of yours truly (circa age two), is here: "If" & "When" -- a Poem of Eulogy and Celebration

26 Oct 12 - 02:02 AM (#3426243)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Dreaming back to childhood.. has a kind of charm:-

In fresh and tranquil valley, as I Iie beside the meandering stream,
My eyelids gently meet and there I slip into a dream.
I dream of better days, of days of sunshine, sea and sand,
Of trees, of bushes, flowers and hues that beautify the land.
Long glasses full of lemonade, fruit with vanilla ice cream,
Aunties apple dumplings, with custard, see it steam.
Picking those wild strawberries and crunchy hazelnuts,
Catching hands on blackberry thorns and getting nasty cuts.
Climbing trees, oft falling out, not breaking any bones,
Trying to skim the water with those nicely flattened stones.
Hearing mummy shouting "Come on kids it's time for tea"
Mouths began to salivate, wondering what 'twould be.
Sadly the dream ends abruptly as a bird begins to sing,
I lie in the sun, contemplating, what the rest of the day will bring.

(c) Mike Hill (May 2011)

26 Oct 12 - 02:39 AM (#3426248)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


Hugs for a beautiful poem.


26 Oct 12 - 02:50 AM (#3426252)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Georgian Silver --

Thank you. So nice to remember warm summer days on chilly autumn nights.

Amos. Thank you. And hugs for the hugs... :-)

27 Oct 12 - 12:06 AM (#3426700)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Capri Uni: tears; wonderful.

27 Oct 12 - 12:22 AM (#3426707)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Incidentally, Capri Uni, this afternoon my wife was practicing "How Can I Keep From Singing" for a song circle.

27 Oct 12 - 08:22 PM (#3427083)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

By the Waters of Babylon

(Boston, winter of 1959-1960; age 22. I have suppressed the names of some real people, and corrected the name & serial number of Dina Barzilai.)

hear the alarm clock
    beat its way off in good time toward its appointed coming
          at 8:00 this day when i shall rise
               and waste more time
hear ------ scratch his ass
    remember -------
          saying with what joy he looked into the john after having
          the dribbly shits for 2 bad days
          in east anglia
          and saw at last a hard turd grinning at him
------ is kind
------- is sane
--------- is good
    blest be their blinding sanity
hear the water
    the smoothed out boundary between cold and warm
    moves down the pipe,and microbes
          swimming against the stream,notice it
hear the good people on the street below
    who laugh,and drink,and fuck their bloody world
to raytheon,and death

it is winter now in jerusalem,and it may be
    that a flake of snow from time to time
    settles on the brown skin of the construction worker
    and melts with the muscle's heat
          that puts the honest iron in concrete
it is winter now in london,and the rains
    wash the blown kiss into the sewer
          to southampton,maybe to suez
          where,being picked up as a mild case of the flu by any
               number of colonels
          and transmitted to a haganah commander
          it might end up near haifa,where it started
it is winter now in boston:ropy snow
    mingles with the dogshit in scollay square
    around the edges of the traffic
    under the friction of whose wheels
    the glistening street reflects the coca cola sign
          impressing upon mine eyes a sickening jazz
          of barfcolored light
but the city is never quiet:
the sky is white with stars,and the radios
    play those distinct tunes that merge
          into each other,and the night
    the nameless tunes that fill the lives of the faraway people
    what are they playing?
          is it "you gotta have heart" for those that haven't gotta
               have it
          or "dina barzilai" for those that have it
          miles and miles and miles of fart
    well,i guess it's you gotta have heart for me
    not much chance of dina anyway
    besides,i'd rather be buggered on
          an accelerating motorcycle in the midst of a discussion
          on the mathematics of masochism
have you any advice,doctor?
hold on tight

30 Oct 12 - 04:47 PM (#3428522)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: GUEST,mayomick

I didn't see so many poppies around Dublin this year so far . Over the past few years the World War One nostalgia brigade in Ireland has taken clever advantage of the GFA to tout the bloody things around town –parity of esteem and all that . Wondering where they'd all gone as I walked around town , I found myself singing this and thought I'd share it with you all.

Where Have All The Poppies Gone ?

Where have all the poppies gone ?
Leeds General Infirmary
Where have all the poppies gone ?
Stoke Mandeville
Where have all the poppies gone ?
Gone to Saviles everyone
When will they BBC ?When will they BBC?

Where have all the Saviles gone ?
Leeds General Infirmary
Where have all the Saviles gone ?
Stoke Mandeville
Where have all the Saviles gone ?
Gone to mortuaries every one
When will they BBC ? When will they BBC?

30 Oct 12 - 07:08 PM (#3428592)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Gutcher

At the height of the Clinton/Lewinsky stushie a panel on the radio were discussing why there had been no songs on the subject. Their conclusion was that the name Lewinsky did not lend itself to rhyme
My head had barely hit the pillow that night when the following came to me:----
licks===lick with the tongue==corporeal punishment on the hands with
       the tawse [a leather belt used on the hands as punishment in
       Scottish schools in the past}

Bill Clinton is a notter loon
and a bet he wishes he wisny
on setturday nichts he got his licks
fae a lassie cried Lewinsky

It helps to have a Scottish accent and vocabulary

30 Oct 12 - 09:32 PM (#3428643)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

:D Very guid, Gutcher!! But aren't you mucking a very cold byre?

31 Oct 12 - 06:56 AM (#3428771)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Gutcher

At the time, when delivered with a deadpan expression, it went over very well with the younger members of the audience, the older ones pretended not to understand the allusions.

Nothing like being in a byre full of cows on a cauld winters day.
As Para Handy would have put it the milk straight from an Ayrshire cow was " chust sublime".

28 Nov 12 - 04:59 PM (#3443910)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Digging Out

Some headway occurs when
You just shake the cage, or
Throw yourself against the barred doors, hard.

Such remedies can drag you out
From the dark pens under the earth,
Protesting loudly.

They will deliver you into the hard arena of the present,
To stand blinking in the sunlight before
The lions are loosed.

21 Jan 13 - 01:07 PM (#3469508)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos


She has left behind her certain times
That she did not understand.
Those moments when, being of a mind
To act, she acted out of hand
And gave up thought for the sake of voice.

Instead, she gathered up the chat and noise
Of feelings, flight, desire, pain,
Mounted in heart within her brain
And gave the world all that she had.
She found the good in doing something bad.

She spent, and fled, and struck the cheeks of time,
And kicked dreams into the shadowed shed of mind
And lurched, and loved, and said her say,
Making the harm sufficient to the day.

And later, much, more settled in her lines,
At home with things uncertain, unrefined,
Less driven to some lost duty to a vague divine,
She has left behind her certain times.

21 Jan 13 - 02:12 PM (#3469537)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Some technical vocabulary for poets:

Repetition of consonant sounds, usually at the beginning of words.

Two unaccented syllables followed by an accented one, as in un-der-STAND.

Repetition of similar vowel sounds.

A pause within a line.

A stressed syllable followed by two unstressed ones, as in SHUD-der-ing.

The selection of words in a literary work—for example, if a narrator says blood-red, that selection has different connotations than rose-red, even though the colors may be similar.

The omission of an unstressed vowel or syllable—such as o'er for over.

Falling meter
Meters that move (or fall) from stressed syllables to unstressed syllables.

A unit of measure in a metrical line; syllables included in a kind of musical bar or measure.

Iamb (as in Iambic)
An unstressed syllable followed by a stressed one, as in at-TEMPT.

The pattern of accents in poems.

Words that imitate the sounds they describe.

A metrical foot composed of two unstressed syllables (as in for the).

Matching sounds in two or more words.

The repetition of accents or stresses.

Rising meter
Poetic meters that move (or ascend) from unstressed to stressed.

A metrical foot represented by two stressed syllables.

The way an author selects and arranges words, and develops ideas using literary techniques.

The order of words.

The writer's attitude implicitly conveyed through diction, syntax, etc.

Accented syllable followed by an unaccented one, as in MAY-be.

22 Jan 13 - 12:44 AM (#3469778)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Since December 1989, I've been a regular contributor to something called "The Art Garden," which was set up as a cross between live theater, and a literary magazine. At regular intervals (at first, quarterly, then semi-annually, and finally, annually) a theme would be selected by the editor/organizer (Irene O'Garden), and sent out to a group of writers. Each of those writers would, independently, create a piece about that theme (a poem, essay, skit, or song), and then gather on the appointed night to read/perform their piece on stage before a live audience in a small theater in Garrison, New York.

After 25 years, and 52 performances, nearly all the core writers had come to places in their lives where taking part in the performance was no longer possible (moving across country, moving across the globe), and so November 24, 2012 was the night of the Final Art Garden, with the theme: "Harvest."

This is the poem I wrote, and read, for the event:

Just like the garden, this poem is a trick

Just like the garden, this poem is a trick.
What seems, at first, so natural and free
Is just the clever artist's sleight-of-hand.
(With all the awkward phrases weeded out,
And punctuation paving stones swept clean).
Just turn your back a moment, then you'll see:
True Nature has a way to claim Her own.

The poetry they handed you in school
To memorize, and analyze, recite,
Will cross pollinate and then, bear fruit
And Dickinsen and Shakespeare will entwine
And you'll forget--
Who wrote the one about
The hen and the wheelbarrow?

Scraps of conversation overheard
Will drop, like seeds, from a passing bird
Onto the farmhouse roof,
And Virginia Creeper,
Like illuminations in the margins of the page
Will curtain down your windows and frame the scene
As garden transforms to enchanted wood

Where tadpoles covered in fur, and web-footed mice
Swim in the frog pond,
And men sprout beards of leaves
And goat beginnings end with fish's tails
Like the punch-line to some joke.
And Red Riding Hood seeks flowers that never grew
On her mother's windowsill.

And where, once upon a time, Rapunzel (her hair cropped short),
Banished from her tower, built a house of her own
And did just fine. With her son and daughter
Toddling at her heels, she harvested acorns for their bread
Until her blind, despairing, Prince stumbled to her door.
He carried her home to a royal garden:
Always tended, never free.

I wonder: did she ever crave a taste
(as her mother had)
Of her own green namesake,
That grows (unbidden)
Amid the stubble of last year's wheat?

...Do you?

22 Jan 13 - 05:01 AM (#3469824)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: theleveller

I love that poem, CapriUni.

Here's one from my blog Poems and Paths

The Shadow People

By shadow hedge along the lane
Where shadow trees stand stark and plain,
Two shadow figures, shaped like pegs
Glide on fantastic shadow legs.
Their spindly shadow bodies look
More dark and shadowy than a rook,
And on his shadow head, see that
One shadow wears a shadow hat,
That makes the low sun's piercing rays
Cast deeper shadows on his face
Where, beneath the shadow brim,
There's just the shadow of a grin.

22 Jan 13 - 12:02 PM (#3469991)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: frogprince

Capri, Leveler, those are both just delightful.

22 Jan 13 - 01:13 PM (#3470014)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: katlaughing

i agree. Well-done, Capri and Leveller! Thanks!

22 Jan 13 - 08:11 PM (#3470183)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

There's just the shadow of a grin

Well, that ending made me grin! Thanks, Leveller, for the poem and your compliment.

And thanks, frogprince and Kat for your compliments.

23 Jan 13 - 12:24 PM (#3470432)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: theleveller

Thanks for the interest and your nice comments, folks.

25 Jul 13 - 11:53 PM (#3541812)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Erection

08 Aug 13 - 04:56 PM (#3547062)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

To Martin, the Saint of Boston

25 Oct 13 - 01:15 PM (#3570034)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

What makes the heart to scream, the spirit
to twist in hot
Winds of love and message,
Showering the eye of the I
With the burning sparking cascade of Real?

Only the whisper of a
Soul hoping,
Like sunrising dew

On a cold brick.

13 Nov 13 - 02:15 AM (#3575184)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Drunken Howls

20 Apr 14 - 02:07 PM (#3620607)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: VirginiaTam


For every picture a thousand, what?
Limbs, organs, lives?
We now see human devastation
with desensitised eyes.
Games, film, news media,
the social network wars,
gods and politics, then as now,
still the corporate whores.
Games have turned
our souls to clay
Conflict is a bore,
war is cliché
Vote for those. Pray with these.
Join virtual oblivion escapees.
There's a different value
on suffering now.
What once was sacred
is now cash cow.
For someone somewhere
there is something to be gained.
For one hundred and forty characters,
or to take another level
or to see a thousand words,
were you entertained?

Tamara Linn Hiatt, April 2014 - I've been wondering how Wilfred Owen would see war today in the context of corporate profiteering, violent video games and social media.

23 Apr 14 - 02:34 PM (#3621673)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

An Illusion of Islands

Breaking many waters, proudly and dumb
(Until things grow).
Grasses, palms, bugs and pelicans. Then
They become full of sound, seem less proud,
More ready to speak somehow, and listen.

But no saying anything will change it— their attention
Comes back over and over to breaking
Hostile currents and the solid
History of deep groundswell which
Raised them up and never

24 Apr 14 - 01:44 AM (#3621783)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Green leaves poke their heads
uncertainly from bark beds
as winter recedes
for the intermittent sun
to herald the coming spring.


24 Apr 14 - 09:55 AM (#3621946)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

Sonnet 19/05/01                        DLIII

        A perfect day for planting, with no sun
        To burn life from small leaves; The promise of
        Water to sustain new growth. Here's one
        Of Nature's subtle gifts, to show her love.
        You plant sweet herbs for future use, and weed
        Unwanted growth, but know a use for all
        The garden grows. Four senses gardens feed,
        And birds, who nourish fifth with evening call.
        The breeze brings cool contentment, as the day
        Slides into night. You have the future sown.
        In time, all that you plant will grow, to pay,
        With interest, labor done by harvest grown.
        With laughter in eyes, and smile touching cheek,
        You have in your garden all I might seek.

24 Apr 14 - 10:07 AM (#3621949)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

I have already posted these two poems by my late first wife on a thread of Poems about aging; but I think they will bear repetition here ~~


A phalanx  of old ladies
Each wheelchair like a throne
Sit doped and dozy in the Kozy
Kare Retirement home.
Our hair's time-bleached to monochrome,
Our teeth are not our own;

   Since it's got so hard to chew,
   We live on tablets, mince and stew.

Precarious, this refuge
(Eight hundred pounds a week) 
Meant selling off the bungalow
In Frinton, not Mustique:
We're better placed than plenty,
But the present's pretty  bleak. 

We're stuck with nothing much to do;
   Our visitors are none or few.

Time was we went to dances,
Our hair in lacquered curls;
In sugar-stiffened petticoats,
We executed twirls.
Oh, how we used to jitterbug,
When we were pretty girls!

Valerie Grosvenor Myer ( 1935-2007)

Sing a song at sixty
Winner of 2nd prize (£300) in a poetry competition

It is too late alas to learn a musical instrument,
To become a downhill racer on skis or compete at Wimbledon;
I shall never be able to read Dostoievsky in the original.
I have not won any cups for achievement,
And so many things I dreamed of will never happen: 
I shall never achieve my own chat show on television,
Or dissolve gracefully into artful tears, clutching my Oscar.

I must reconcile myself to clothing which is 
Comfortable rather than glamorous,
And acknowledge that hair-dye after sixty is usually a mistake.
I refuse to lament the loss of my beauty and my slender waist,
Instead I will be grateful that I retain my teeth, 
More metal than ivory, it must be frankly admitted,
Propped, pinned, posted and padded with plastic, 
But I can still eat with them.

I will be glad that that I was not born in the Dark Ages 
Before the invention of spectacles. I will not agonize
Over tests I have failed, but will concentrate on remembering 
The ones I have passed, and the people who have loved me.

It is futile to lie awake brooding over old animosities.
It is time to forgive one's parents, and to contemplate the young 
Not with envy but with tender concern and generosity,
Betraying no awareness of how vulnerable they are.

Valerie Grosvenor Myer (1935 - 2007)

25 Apr 14 - 11:48 PM (#3622362)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Rain drops kiss my eye
as I stare at cloud veiled stars
in search of the moon's
pale asteroid pock marked face
and her sun ray lipstick grin.


21 Oct 14 - 04:06 PM (#3671081)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Originally published in UK based digital magazine Angle Poetry ©October, 2014.

Cu Chullainn and Ferdia

After three days of duel, one on one battle,
at the ford of Dee, he carries him to the bank,
the bronze body is limp in war weary arms,
head hung back, slain eyes open,
one arm reaches for the water's surface,

smelted tears lurch down metallic cheeks,
for his best friend, for his enemy,
as they reach the bank. Soon he will fight
some more to defend his home,
but now, he weeps for the man he killed.


21 Oct 14 - 06:48 PM (#3671117)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bill D

Herons..sunset.. withered Aster
Premonitions of disaster.
Dark clouds racing... silent moon,
Trying not to rise too soon.
Last geese flying... leafless tree.
Again, November has to be.

(resurrected from an old notebook I kept about 1958)
I decided poetry was not my best use of time.

22 Oct 14 - 01:29 AM (#3671153)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Well, I like it.


11 Nov 14 - 11:01 AM (#3676428)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Homecoming Parade

When Specialist Martin returned
from Afghanistan,
he was veiled in a flag.
His family were there to greet
as they hugged and keened
their tears on the oil stained tarmac
of the Sandpoint airport.

The Patriot Guard Riders,
those knights upon their motorbikes,
led the honour brigade,
protected the motorcade
as they slid down Highway 95
to Bonners Ferry,
his hometown.

Spectators lined the fringes
of this two laned mountain encased track,
burned by the mid August sun.

Some held signs and placards that said:

Thank you, Ethan.
God Bless You, Martin Family.
SPC Martin is our hero.

Still others held their hands to their chests,
felt their hearts twitch beneath
the wrinkled lines of their palms.

When the convoy pulled into
the funeral home parking lot,
the bikers, in their badged leather armour,
stood in formation, hands lined
across their forward as they saluted him,
while his honour guard escorted
him from the back of the white hearse,
into the shaded solitude
of the brick building.

At 22, Army Specialist Ethan Martin
came home.

© 2012 by Nathan Tompkins

11 Nov 14 - 02:39 PM (#3676486)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

'On yonder hill there stands a coo-
If it's no' there, it's awa' the noo.. '

William McGonagall, poet and tragedian

25 Nov 14 - 04:52 PM (#3680002)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin


6 gunshot drumbeat strokes roll his eyes closed.
6 grief dyed lullabies sing him to sleep.
6 brass knuckled tongues chant his spirit home.
but one killer with a badge, walked free.


04 Dec 14 - 01:08 PM (#3682517)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner

I was thinking of you
and birthdays long ago
When we were young
and did not know
the wind's caress
of icy snow
We thought the world
a kinder place
and humankind
a kinder race
'cause we were young
and did not know


04 Dec 14 - 05:21 PM (#3682596)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Bert

The Spitfire

We couldn't say it properly when we saw them in the sky.
Us kids would run and point and shout
Spiffeye, spiffeye, spiffeye.

We hid under our desks in school each time there was a raid
we would laugh and play the fool too young to be afraid
when the raid was over we'd look up in the sky
to spot the guys who'd saved us
the Spiffeye, spiffeye, spiffeye.

Now I'm living near the flight path of Pete Field and Shriever bases
I don't know the names of these modern planes
with their modern pilot aces
But to honor every one of them as I watch them flying by
you'll hear me quitely whispering
Spiffeye, spiffeye, spiffeye.

06 Dec 14 - 12:00 PM (#3683075)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: gnu

Got this from Trinity Today and the "article" contained no title or source for this...

I was shocked , confused, bewildered
as I entered Heaven's door,
not by the beauty of it all,…
nor the lights or its decor.
But it was the folks in Heaven
who made me sputter and gasp–
the thieves, the liars, the sinners,
the alcoholics and the trash.

There stood the kid from seventh grade
who swiped my lunch money twice.
Next to him was my old neighbor
who never said anything nice.

Bob, who I always thought
was rotting away in hell,
was sitting pretty on cloud nine,
looking incredibly well.

I nudged Jesus, 'What's the deal?
I would love to hear Your take.
How'd all these sinners get up here?
God must've made a mistake!.'

'And why is everyone so quiet,
so somber – give me a clue.'
'Hush, child,' He said,
'they're all in shock.
No one thought they'd be seeing you.'

26 May 15 - 09:28 AM (#3711879)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

These two are really a pair. And as a preface, here are links to my source tales: Tom Thumb and Hans my Hedgehog


The people tell me I'm a lucky one,
'Cause even though I am a wish-born child
(Those never come out normal, like you want),
At least I'm human-shaped from head to heel.
Not like that monster, Hans, the next town, over,
Who's just a prickly hedgehog, snout to waist,
So he must spend his life behind the stove,
On a moldy bed of straw, with bugs to eat.
A burden to his father – such a shame!
And then, they start to argue: When's the last
That anyone had caught a glimpse of him?
Some hope he's finally dead, and so at peace.
The people tell me I'm a lucky one,
'Cause even though I'll never grow a whit,
At least I'm handsome, and I'm clever, too.
And I can help to drive my father's cart,
Whispering commands in Dobbin's ear.
They say I'm blessed. I grit my teeth and nod,
Not like that poor boy Hans, the next town over.
My parents love me like a wish come true,
And listen to me when I have ideas.
My father built a bed that's just for me.
My mother stitched a coat that's just my size.
My supper dish may be an acorn cap,
But I have had my fill of bread and cheese.
They tell me to be glad I'm not like Hans.
And I am glad. I wish they'd notice why.


I've heard the rumors-- how my story's told.
First things first: it did not end that way
(My skin all milky white, and hair all gold,
My father proud until his dying day).
And second, tell me, how would I have known
All of the things I'd need to "Break the Spell,"
When I'd been left to die in straw on stone?
As if I'd even want to. Go to hell!
That's just the yarn they spin to quell their fears,
And I've remained a monster sixty years.

I ran away from home, that much is true.
But never with a gift from "dear old Dad."
I stole those bagpipes, and the black hen, too--
The only friend I ever really had.
It's true the king was lost, and heard me play,
Though, like I said, I never had a plan.
But when he told me he would gladly pay,
And pulled one of those rings from off his hand --
He asked me if I'd like his pretty hat.
(Can you imagine -- velvet on my head?)
And really, what would I have done with that?
But he was loved! 'Twas what I wished, instead.
So yes, I said: "Give me a living thing--
The first to come and greet you at the door."
I never thought: "The Daughter of the King"
Might be his dog, for I'd seen that, before.
And after that, I let myself forget--
Until the day my dear old chicken died.
That was the first I ever felt regret,
Though not the first time I had ever cried.
I really didn't think 'twould do much good,
To try and claim a worn-out I.O.U.,
But there was nothing for me, in that wood,
And there was nothing left for me to do.
They kept their promise-- that's the magic thing,
When they could have lied, or had me killed.
I married her. And now I am the king,
Though I still have my snout, and all my quills.
For we can't shed our pain, like some old shirt,
To throw onto the coals, until its gone.
I'm less than half a man, without my hurt
Yet, truly, I was changed, that coming dawn.
'Twas neither flames nor salves that transformed me,
But She – who saw my full humanity.

26 May 15 - 03:01 PM (#3711956)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F


Turn off fan. Noise stops.
Turn off lamp. Glare stops.
No switch turns off shame.

27 May 15 - 12:37 PM (#3712220)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

Bravo, bravo, bravo.

Joe, that terse piece is as sharp as a new nail.

Capri Uni, your treatment of the voices of Grimm's tales is fascinating and beautifully done!

Bert, I love "Spiffeye"!

If you scroll back you will find most of my original poems have been taken down. This is in order to be able to submit them "unpublished"; I hope no mystery ensued.


27 May 15 - 04:25 PM (#3712276)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Airymouse

Small ball of murmured purring fur
With faith to move mountains
Faith misplaced
For I, Pagliaccio, clown
Have come, not to the rescue,
But to put you down.

27 May 15 - 04:39 PM (#3712284)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Published in Calliope, © February, 2015


We sat across from each other,
as we drank our Irish whiskey,
handed the glass back and forth,
while we talked in the dim light
of the overflowed pub,

you stretched your arm
across the wooden table
as I sipped from the glass,
my pint of India pale,
I grasped your fingers,
lifted your hand, felt static shock

when my mouth tattooed
a lip shaped beer stain
on the back of your skin....

or we snapped photographs,
of sunflower gardens,
as we laughed together,
and I loved….

I want to delete you
from my computer,
but like some self-flagellating
emotional masochist…

I can't.

Nathan Tompkins

27 May 15 - 07:54 PM (#3712332)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Amos -- That's a big part of why I've chosen to go the route of self-publishing / Print-on-Demand.

19 Jun 15 - 11:49 PM (#3717637)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Supermoon

The moon danced the summer reel
with Perseus beneath the ballroom
starlights, as his meteorite shoes
sparked across the night sky floor.

Her full white face, crater lips smiled,
sang to the tune of the August pipers,
as they fingered tree limb chanters,
squeezed green leaf bellows.

Together they swung close to the earth,
as she whispered her heart to his ears,
felt his lips with hers, I knew she found another,

together they would sleep with the sunrise,
together they would wake with the sunset…

Nathan Tompkins

© October, 2014 published in North West Words

20 Jun 15 - 05:29 AM (#3717664)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Galloping Gwdihw

My sideboard has plenty of
What it lacks is brains.

21 Jul 15 - 03:47 PM (#3725288)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Tin Man

The Tin Man walks down 6th Avenue,
ipod stuck in his ears disguises
the jangled sound of jagged metal,
stripped toothed gears, half melted belts,
over stretched springs,

all in a plastic Fred Meyer grocery bag
stuffed in the depths of his black backpack.

Its been broken too many times, oiled tears
drain down rain gutter cheeks, remembers
the blue eyed munchkin maiden.

The cool damp salt air drifts from Puget Sound
paints rust tattoos on his silver skin,
as he stands in the shadow of the Wizard's
Space Needle castle, the throne room
in a constant rotation against the blue sky.

He came to see if his heart was under warranty,
to see if he could trade the Wizard for a new one….
this one is too fucked up to repair.

Nathan Tompkins

© 2014 NonBinary Review

09 Jan 16 - 01:56 PM (#3764046)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

One of my poems was just published the other day.

09 Jan 16 - 05:21 PM (#3764090)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: CapriUni

Congratulations, Amergin!

09 Jan 16 - 08:45 PM (#3764135)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Joe_F

No apologies to B. Brecht:

Oh, moon of Massachusetts,
Why can't we say goodbye?
This life's no bloody use, it's
Just going thru motions, oh, you know why.

16 Mar 16 - 05:33 PM (#3779305)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Since it's St. Patrick's Day tomorrow...I have here an ekphrastic poem that was published by Yellow Chair Review in October. It is called The Dying Cu Chullainn

16 Mar 16 - 06:02 PM (#3779318)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: The Sandman

where is St Patrick in Irelands hour of need
to banish all the snakes who choose the path of greed

24 Apr 16 - 07:20 AM (#3786951)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

am here 2 tell u
that those who assure u
that things get better as time passes
r up own arses


mar 08

24 Apr 16 - 07:23 AM (#3786953)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

Lines at fourscore'n'three

When am I
Going to die?
Who can know
When I'll go?

Michael Grosvenor Myer
    8 October 2015

24 Apr 16 - 07:28 AM (#3786955)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

written on my first wife's suicide Aug 2007


Trying to keep going

In the teeth
Of the lethal
Mix of grief
And relief

Michael Grosvenor Myer

28 Apr 16 - 08:34 AM (#3787590)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

Two of my more recent published pieces, both in the April issue of Menacing Hedge. There are also links where you can hear me read them.

Nathan Tompkins

06 May 16 - 03:39 AM (#3788897)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

Vive la France

Y'a des gridlocks
Sue la Pé


06 May 16 - 03:41 AM (#3788898)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

Sur, sodit!

06 May 16 - 11:21 PM (#3788978)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Donuel

The I that can't see itself thinks
wordless thoughts that flow in the wind
Waves murmur melodies of "we"
Sometimes it shares secrets with me.

The blind may hear more than most souls.
The wordless see more than you're told
Like a blurred smear of future past
Some see through time that ever lasts.

We have abilities unknown
To transmit though space you can't see
So stop making fun of Tesla
Everything you use he conceived.

06 May 16 - 11:44 PM (#3788981)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Donuel


Old Franz heard ufo signals
He heard them on his radio
The one that he had invented
People thought he flipped his wignal

The I that can't see itself thinks
wordless thoughts that flow in the wind
Waves murmur melodies of "we"
Sometimes it shares secrets with me.

The blind may hear more than most souls.
The wordless see more than you're told
Like a blurred smear of future past
Some see through time that ever lasts.

We have abilities unknown
To transmit though space you can't see
So stop making fun of Tesla
Everything you use he conceived.

11 May 16 - 06:03 PM (#3789840)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Donuel

cake walk waffle waddle frozen ice cream lox
Donut dance, crappy snacks, chocolate bacon pants
Many of the treats you eat have more to do with paint
Salty sweet sour heat sold as great just aint.

beef bark shark heart, deep fried nipple chips
Everything cooked in mystery fat always goes to hips
You don't need a Vegan Czar, you can use your head
They used to eat Peacock breAst and rape seed sour bread

The next time you crunch a snack think of a carrot slice
or 15 hundred years of Indian food made with power spice.
If your snack was made with palm oil you killed a habitat
We all know you don't need that much grease, fat is fat is fat

31 May 16 - 10:48 PM (#3793122)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion


I know a place
Where an 18th Century
Walks down a staircase
Into the open air
Passes through a locked gate and then


I don't believe in ghosts!

But when not long ago
Someone who ought to know
Told me that the story
Was of no antiquity
But the result of a hoax
In the early 20th Century

I felt oddly


      Michael Grosvenor Myer

31 May 16 - 11:10 PM (#3793123)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

Footnote in case anyone interested:-

The Fellows Building, Second Court, Christ's College Cambridge

18 Jun 16 - 02:27 AM (#3796348)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: MGM·Lion

A limerick inspired by Child ballads #1-4 {Riddles Wisely Expounded &c}, #46 {Captain Wedderburn's Courtship} &c &c

It's part of an ancient tradition
That persons of noble condition
Must faddle and fiddle
To answer a riddle
If they wish to indulge in coition


18 Jun 16 - 09:07 PM (#3796514)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: kendall

I tried to add a poem but it disappeared before I was finished.

22 Jun 16 - 01:58 PM (#3797059)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amos

That's a sign of the very best sort of poem, Skipper! :D

30 Sep 16 - 05:21 AM (#3812001)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Mrs Brown had a wayward parrot, A pretty you thing called Flo.
Who was always swearing and talking, with sexual innuendo.
Mrs Brown went to tea with the Pastor, one Sunday evening last year.
Where she saw his old parrot praying, and it gave her a clever idea.
She asked the Pastor at teatime,''Can I borrow your old parrot, Rex'.
To try to influence my parrot Flo, who talks of nothing but sex!''
She took Rex home the same evening, he prayed all the way in the car.
She was so impressed with the old bird, whose manners outshone Flos' by far.
But when she put him in Flos' cage, she realised get greatest fears.
Flo said ''Do you want some Rex'' Rex replied ''I've been praying for this for years!!''

06 Nov 17 - 06:20 PM (#3887166)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Amergin

The Drive

Grampa tells me as we drive
       the snow brushed back roads
       of North Idaho, how he took my mother

on a drive along the same unpainted asphalt paths,
       the night before she married her first husband,
       so he could explain to her it wasn?t too late to back out,

that it would be ok, and even preferable for her to call it off,
       better to give the marriage an abortion, than to shove paper vows
       in a shredder, to erase her name from the pledge. She felt

she owed it to the mystery man, the man I have only met once
       on a visitation in Portland, when I was she spoke
       the words before the Bishop, slashed her name, placed her future

on the contract line. If she hadn?t, he would never have donated
       his sperm, his genes. I would never have been thrust,
       screaming into this world, in that hospital by the Kootenai River.

Sometimes, I think that would have been ok.

Nathan Tompkins

? June, 2016-Dirty Chai

23 Dec 17 - 04:56 AM (#3895386)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Happy Birthday to Jesus.

Will you say ‘’Happy Birthday’’ to Jesus,
On Christmas Day this year?
Or will you just drink yourself silly,
on vodka, whisky, or beer?
When you open your presents, at Christmas,
Will you think to yourself, this is fun?
Or will you remember the gifts that were given,
To the child who was Gods only son.?
Will you go to a Church in the morning,
To worship the Jesus who died?
Or will you sit laughing and joking,
As peace, joy and love all abide?
Will you think of the man who died for you,
As you sit with your family and friends?
When you don’t pray or read your Bible,
Will your means justify your ends?
I’ll pray and I’ll read my Bible,
No matter what anyone thinks.
I’ll probably eat, a lot of good food,
And may have a couple of drinks.
Whatever may happen this Christmas,
Fantastic or just ‘very nice’.
I won’t forget why we celebrate,
The birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Mike Hill. Nov 2016. (C)

30 May 19 - 09:17 AM (#3994458)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Found this old thread and thought I might revive it to see if we still have any poets amongst us. Here's one I wrote a while back.

Her Type for 25 Years
How would she have managed without me,
For all of our twenty five years.
A quarter of one whole century,
That we’d part I just never had fears.

On each other we were so dependant,
I was such a provider you see.
I could do nothing without her,
And she nothing too without me.

She loved my words, every letter,
That I uttered for her when I did.
I was devoted to her
always doing as my lady bid.

In a Stationers shop she first saw me,
I could see she was really impressed.
She gave me some fanciful glances,
Until her eyes came to rest.

I could tell how much she wanted me,
As we left that Stationers shop.
She held me close on the local bus,
Until we reached her home stop.

As we entered the house that evening,
I felt so needed and loved.
She said ‘’You are Gods’ greatest gift to me’’
Like I’d come from Heaven above.

We’ve been through so much together,
In the last twenty five lovely years.
I’ve seen her joy and the laughter,
And witnessed the sadness and tears.

She wanted to be a great writer,
To produce a respected ‘Best Seller’.
I didn’t quite think she would make it,
But couldn’t possibly tell her.

She still battles on with her writings,
She has the true grit of a fighter.
She, well known for eloquence,
And me…. as her old typewriter.

                                                Michael J Hill © 2016

30 May 19 - 11:28 AM (#3994479)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

165th sonnet to my Reluctant Muse

Sonnet 21/5/2019                         MCCLVI

I write now for an audience of none:
This muse does not my verses read, nor think
What she inspires has worth. My hopes now sink
Away from light, and soul turns to despair.
Yet, heart is not so willing to not care:
I still pray dreams of her will sonnets give,
And someday muse’s smile might let hope live.
Must heart admit she has ending begun?
It is not absence from muse that I fear,
But that lines unread cannot her smiles earn.
How shall I feelings tell, when she’ll ignore
All that I write? How can I make it clear
How much heart hurts, to know I’ll never learn
Her dreams that could future verses ensure?

01 Jun 19 - 04:24 PM (#3994830)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Neil D

Here's one I wrote while sitting out at the open mic my town holds every Saturday in nice weather. Nearly every line refers to someone who was there at the time, including my dogs, so you won't recognize them.

I saw Joseph talking to Jesus
Down on Market Street last night
DJ was there a-running things
While Saint Stephen lit his pipe
Mike was miking at the mic
Making sound that sounds quite right
Heartbeats drumming at the sight
Of beauty walking like the night
Stetson hats are shading faces
In the amber glow of the old street light

The cowboy on his laurels resting
After yodel-odel-odeling
With Iron waiting in the wing
With maybe one more song to sing
Girly Girl was looking on
With Bitty-bye protectoring
Twilit skies in a hundred eyes
Sparking and reflectoring
Ears say thanks for gifts you bring
While minds go transcendentalling

02 Jun 19 - 05:52 PM (#3994980)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

we should have made amends
to our families and friends
but that day has past
never to come again
and the old man up the street
we should have seen
that he was well and
had enough to eat
but that time was then
never to come again
and my Dad
was distraught
angry and sad
my frail words
couldn’t last
now his life has past
never to be again

02 Jun 19 - 07:34 PM (#3994992)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

he crested the top of the clouds
turned and waved slighted
and slid behind the embankment
we knew the instant that his spirit had left his body
and watched him ascend rapidly
into the heavens
there was no expression as he rose
but when he turned
he inclined his head slightly toward me
and nodded slightly
we never again looked back at his remains
still strapped in that huey

03 Jun 19 - 03:01 PM (#3995140)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

Still raw, but I may polish it more over the next few weeks.

Sonnet 2/6/2019 On the Dentzel Carousel, Glen Echo MCCLXVII

I go around, and return to the start,
But feel great calmness on this carousel.
Soul finds ease in the memories, to tell
My dreams I cannot give past muse my heart.
It's not just that she will not value art,
But that she thinks thought of her casts no spell
To give true verse: For that, heart bids farewell.
That is the reason I must from hopes part.
I cannot alter words, nor change her mind
To restore what has shattered: Should I send
My dreams to Lethe, or now try to find
Some kinder muse? Is there a balm, to mend
The wound this angel sent my heart, or bind
A soul broken from inspiration's end?

03 Jun 19 - 07:49 PM (#3995177)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

(Thank you, VerseElf)

Sonnet 29/11/18    On Love                MCLXLVI

If one wants to be loved, love others: Give
What you want to be given. To refrain
From caring: How can one caring obtain?
There is a balance. Seek, and one may find,
But offer and be offered. Love is blind,
Yet knows its’ own. One can but dreams pursue,
To find heart’s desire: One must hopes renew
To have the chance to let love in heart live.
Love given is increased: The more one shares,
The greater one may give. True love is not
A zero-sum endeavor: All sides gain.
In others one finds reason that one cares,
But all have value to one’s dreams. The spot
Each person finds in heart is held within.

I know, weak rhyme at the end. No longer in that mood, to rewrite it now. Perhaps at some future time.

03 Jun 19 - 09:12 PM (#3995182)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

the elemental winds of change are blowing the seasons around
knocking them into trees
and slamming them into the ground
we watch all this from our kitchen window
as the sun is shadowing at times long and billowing and other times underfoot
leaves dancing through the windrows of hedges
storm surges whirling the dust and sand
piling up among the bushes and trees
altering the scape of the land
and we mortals living both in bondage and free

05 Jun 19 - 12:31 PM (#3995338)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: beardedbruce

Sonnet Redouble to my Reluctant Muse

Arms ache with longing to my muse enfold,
But Heaven remains beyond reach of heart:
How can I to reluctant muse impart
All that she gives? Words alone do not tell
What in her eyes and smile become the spell
To fill my mind with verse. She brings a light
To shadowed dream, to make my work seem right,
That I might hope I have my passions told.
How will I repay muse who is the source
Of vision, and of dream? I cannot give,
In all my verses, words enough to show
How much she means to me: Heart holds to course
At her guidance. I must let longings live,
For all I know she does not wish it so.

For all I know she does not wish it so,
I will acknowledge debt I owe my muse.
Without her light as guide, dream would refuse
To show me what to write, and how to share
Thought of my heart’s desire: That I might care
As much as muse allows. She holds the key
To inspiration in her smile to me:
How can I keep from letting longings grow?
She gives me reason to heart’s feelings write,
In dream of her warm eyes, and sight of smile
So sweet, to encourage my passions’ flow.
I long to hold muse always in my sight,
But know to not unasked of hopes make trial:
How can I let her my heart’s desires know?

How can I let her my heart’s desires know
When I cannot my muse’s dream recall?
Should she inform my heart, that would be all
I need: I would then try to dream fulfil,
If I might, and have cause to think she will
Accept my offering of heart’s caring.
Not knowing dream, I’ll but send words bearing
My hope to see more of her eyes’ bright glow.
If I might future find in dreams inspired
By thought of muse, would I then know the way
For verse to take to win to goal, or lose
All that I seek offending muse? So mired
In questions, I dare not heart’s desires say
Without giving cause that she would refuse.

Without giving cause that she would refuse
I try to tell muse how I value smile,
But do not know the words I may write: While
I dare not say too much, it would be sin
To say too little. In sight I begin
To find my inspiration. Can I send
Enough to tell, but not sweet muse offend?
Would I win attention if words amuse?
I long to find perfect word, to describe
The curve of muse’s lips, that smiles create.
Yet, I am satisfied to recall views
And dream I might of heaven’s kiss imbibe.
Should I my own heart’s desire now relate,
To share her smile, or let dream of her choose?

To share her smile, or let dream of her choose
The future path of all endeavors seems
To be all I might dare: I have no schemes
That will win more than asked. Must I recall
Unfounded dream, when I know dream is all
That I might hold at night? Should I dream let
Control imagination, sleep upset,
And from verse hide all of my muse’s views?
In muse I seek to focus of art find,
That I might hold to a fixed path that ties
Dreams and desires into verse that defines
My soul. Apart from muse, I remain blind:
Without her smile, and the light from her eyes,
What can inspire all of my future lines?

What can inspire all of my future lines
When I so rarely at my muse may look,
To see her eyes and smile? Yet, in what book
Have I found promise that my dreams will be?
I’ve only faith and hope muse might agree
To guide my words, and lend heart’s passions voice.
I dare not falter: I have only choice
To pray muse gives power that verse refines.
In muse I find reason to care: The gem
Of bright eyes that let light into my soul.
Yet, should I look in my dreams for the signs
Of hope? Does not seeing my muse condemn
Heart to darkness, and verse from reaching goal?
Must I abandon hope that her light shines?

Must I abandon hope that her light shines
Upon the dreams that give me verse? I fear
The darkness absence brings: How might I steer
A path to muse’s presence? Dare I ask
To spend time with my muse, or is that task
I cannot on her place? Must heart defend
The need for conversation? I intend
Only to learn what hopes now muse defines.
Without some dream of muse, heart is as blind,
Not seeing soul, and falling to despair.
Should I have concern caring is too bold,
That I must longings keep only in mind?
Might I ask for my muse to sweet smile share,
To give reason to any verses mold?

To give reason to any verses mold
Requires a muse. To form more than just dream,
There must be light from higher realm, a beam
To fill the mind. So few provide the spark
That fires the soul and lifts heart from the dark:
Might I hold to this one, now found, to keep
The inspiration? Would she have me weep,
That passion’s heat condemns heart to be cold?
I wait, hoping to spend a future hour
With one who causes verse. I must head bow
In silent prayer that heart might fears retire.
Can I hope that muse will let my dreams flower
To vision of her smile, or tell me how
Am I to hold as hidden heart’s desire?

Am I to hold as hidden heart’s desire
To muse repay for gift? Can I not thank
The one who fills my verse? Mind would be blank
Without sight of her eyes: Her smiles restore
Heart’s dream to life. Should I not beg, implore,
And plead, for all that muse might share? I prize
Seeing my muse: Perhaps it is not wise,
But I care for one who holds heart entire.
Yet, should I write of longings, when I know
I do not hold my muse’s heart? I try
To dream of only smile, but heart might sin
When muse is beautiful. When verses flow,
I can but hope I might on words rely,
That I might offer cause for smile, or grin.

That I might offer cause for smile, or grin,
To give me muse’s grace, would be my wish.
I must hope I can with verse accomplish
Intent: To dream of muse hold on the page,
And keep a part of muse as mine. My stage
Is fourteen lines, and muse provides the wing
To lift words from paper, letting verse sing.
I fear I must all of hopes on muse pin.
How can I know what words muse will allow,
Until words I share? Can I hold dream, while
Reaching to muse? Dare I let desires toy
With what muse provides me? Do I break vow
To not of muse ask? Only with her smile
Can I know what to write, to lines employ.

Can I know what to write, to lines employ
In reaching muse? Dare I reveal that part
Of soul is bound? Desires may my dreams start,
But it is smile that offers verses life.
How am I to find peace, out of this strife,
Without my muse’s blessing? Will she share
The light of eyes, bringing glow to her hair?
Can I see heaven and not lust destroy?
It seems muse has from heaven brought a charm
And beauty to guide mortal fools who’ve earned
The pleasure of her smile. Might she inspire
Enough to make verse worthy? Does hope harm
The chance of smile? Can heart remain unburned
In seeking to in muse’s eyes see fire?

In seeking to in muse’s eyes see fire,
To light dreams and warm heart, I find I fall
Into my own desires: I dare not call
My longings more than hope. She has made clear
I should not think that I might hold her near.
Yet, can I less than care? She is the one
I will call muse: Would I gratitude shun,
To not give thanks she does not of verse tire?
In muse I see one who shares Heaven’s light
And I will pray, to have the chance to get
Such sacred blessings: I would my hopes spin
This verse to fabric of a worth, that might
Repay my muse for her gift, in soul set
To forge in mind words that might her smile win.

To forge in mind words that might her smile win
Requires true passion’s flame, and words refined
By higher power. The dreams one has in mind
Are but the ore: One must from them burn dross
That holds the soul to earth. From dream I’ll toss
All parts that are not holy, that I might
Hold to the prayer that muse will keep hopes bright.
The line between longing and lust is thin.
All I can do is try my best, to hold
To muse’s gift: She gives with smile the source
For Poetry. I hope not to annoy,
But I wish I might know if muse might fold
Her wings, and listen to my verse: Of course
I long to know how to bring my muse joy.

I long to know how to bring my muse joy
That I might see her smile, and take delight
In showing that the words I choose are right.
I hope to give her pleasure that I find
Such inspiration, yet must be resigned
To holding only in my dreams. Muse is grail,
To give verse desired power: I must veil
Any dream that would muse’s gift destroy.
I value muse for all she is, the cause
Of verse. For lines to vex I would regret:
My muse’s smile is worth far more than gold.
I do not know how to my desires pause,
With such a maid. She is an angel, yet
Arms ache with longing to my muse enfold.

Arms ache with longing to my muse enfold,
For all I know she does not wish it so.
How can I let her my heart’s desires know,
Without giving cause that she would refuse
To share her smile, or let dream of her choose
What can inspire all of my future lines?
Must I abandon hope that her light shines
To give reason to any verses mold?
Am I to hold as hidden heart’s desire
That I might offer cause for smile, or grin?
Can I know what to write, to lines employ
In seeking to in muse’s eyes see fire
To forge in mind words that might her smile win?
I long to know how to bring my muse joy.

05 Jun 19 - 02:45 PM (#3995356)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

my old cat sits at my feet
thinks its time to eat
by the tilt of her head.
she'll wander off to bed
after a few bites
leaving me to think about what might
have been.
tonight i will bury my friend again
and again
each time i dream.

05 Jun 19 - 02:48 PM (#3995359)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

snow men
prayer for homeless veterans

I wonder
where they live
these men of darkness
with nothing to give
save a smile
and a wave
flying their rags
like ceremonial flags
where do they go
when the snows fly thin
rolling and blowing
with the harshness
of a bitter winter wind.
I wonder if they die
and are replaced
by other men
when spring rushes in...

or do they simply bend
and fold themselves
into the night
and wait in stony silence
for the coming light...

06 Jun 19 - 01:55 PM (#3995447)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

The Chain

Beaten by the powerful rays of sunshine on my eyes,
I knelt to pick some flowers, and lying there, oh what surprise.
A chain of gold, enamelled bright in rainbow colours fine,
The thought, to keep it, but I knew that it could not be mine.

My quest now, to find the owner, of such delicate a piece,
Perhaps somebodys’ mother, sister, cousin, auntie, niece.
I spread the news by internet, an easy thing to do,
I expected a response, maybe a greedy crank or two.

But no-one recognised the chain from pictures I had shown,
In spite of advertising in most places I had known.
I started looking closely at this chain that I had found,
And realised the workmanship, would many folk confound.

I felt it had some age in fact great age as it turned out,
What the museum told me, would fairly make me pout.
A queens chain, from the medieval times they said,
Which could have been converted to a tiara for her head.

Treasure Trove is what I had, they told me on that day,
We’ll have to take it from you and it must be sent away.
I waited weeks to hear the news and one day yes it came,
In a decorated envelope, in italics there my name.

I really was exited as I thought ‘my fortune’s here’,
But when I fully opened it, the content was quite clear.
It had belonged to Royalty, so I didn’t have a claim,
But the museum to show it, would mention me by name.

I had become a donor though ’twas not a choice of mine,
But when I thought much deeper, I just knew that this was fine.
We share the world we live in, with great people and with things,
I now respected this Royal chain which joy to many brings.

I’m pleased that I am not a man, who is consumed by greed,
I’m just content to live this life, with joys on which to feed.
To be wealthy, is a thing to which, I really don’t reach out,
I’d prefer a museum visit, to see what life’s about.

Michael J Hill © 2019.

07 Jun 19 - 11:32 AM (#3995534)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: SamStone

i am wearing the skin
of my seventy fifth year
one day slips into the next
without fanfare or fuss
no bells or whistles
who will be left to tell my story
who will shout my last hurrah
my days are wearing thin like threads
of my best old shirt
faded and bare
never too old to discard
and still good enough to wear

07 Jun 19 - 05:21 PM (#3995573)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Andy7

As the fisher folk
Carried their catch
Across the beach,

A few of the fish,
Clinging hopelessly
To precious life,

Leaped from the nets,
And fell onto the sand.

And there,
In burning sun,
And dry, unfriendly air,
They died,

And lay forgotten;

Until the sea rose,
And, with gentle waves,
Caressed them.

02 Jan 20 - 08:33 PM (#4026041)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Stilly River Sage

Five years ago Amos sent me a long list of poem links in this thread (primarily) that he wanted hidden from view because he was hoping to have them published in print and didn't want the web versions out there (apparently the place he was thinking of publishing would want them unpublished in other formats). I checked his Amazon author page and there is no poetry book extant. I think life and death got in the way of those plans.

This afternoon I restored several dozen of Amos' poems to view. They're wonderful, and need to be seen somewhere.

03 Jan 20 - 06:45 AM (#4026090)
Subject: RE: Mudcat Poetry Corner
From: Georgiansilver

Summer to Autumn to Winter to Spring to Summer,

When the savage heat of Summer, has begun to fade away,
And the first great shower of Summer rain, deigns to invade our day.
The petrichor, such fragrant aroma, delights our sense of smell,
And man and woman, and child all know that everything is well.

When the leaves and flowers have gently drooped, and birds less sing.
’Tis then mens feelings, lightly turn to thoughts of love, not Spring.
As the dark of night, much earlier, closes in to end our day,
Migrating birds have taken flight, to find warmth far away.

The rainclouds start to form, the old North wind begins to blow,
It forces in the coldness, that predicts the fall of snow.
Then Christmas songs resound around the shops in every town,
And money is spent on presents, so that no-one gets let down.

Then soon that Christmas cheer is gone. and Wintertime sets in,
With chilly New Year winds, with frost and snow it all wears thin.
Iced up windscreens, iced up locks, and cars that fail to start,
Sliding your car to work, has now become a work of art.

But it’s not a time to be fed up, it won’t last, very long,
Spring will be here very soon, with the birds all in fine song.
The land will fill with lovely sights, of flowers and leaves anew,
With landscapes all bedecked with flora, all of wondrous hue.

The land will glow with Spring delight, the sun will shine so bright,
It will get stronger every day, then comes the shorter night.
With Spring rains gone and smells afresh, life is great it’s plain,
As the land heats up and people too, Summer’s here again.

Michael J Hill © December 2019.