Monday, April 30, 2012

Blogs All Over the Internet Started this Month Paying Tribute to Adrienne Rich: Feminist, Warrior, Role Model.

 I would like to close National Poetry month
 with one of her most powerful and salient poems.

Diving into the Wreck
    by Adrienne Rich

First having read the book of myths,
and loaded the camera,
and checked the edge of the knife-blade,
I put on
the body-armor of black rubber
the absurd flippers
the grave and awkward mask.
I am having to do this
not like Cousteau with his
assiduous team
aboard the sun-flooded schooner
but here alone.

There is a ladder.
The ladder is always there
hanging innocently
close to the side of the schooner.
We know what it is for,
we who have used it.
it is a piece of maritime floss
some sundry equipment.

I go down.
Rung after rung and still
the oxygen immerses me
the blue light
the clear atoms
of our human air.
I go down.
My flippers cripple me,
I crawl like an insect down the ladder
and there is no one
to tell me when the ocean
will begin.

First the air is blue and then
it is bluer and then green and then
black I am blacking out and yet
my mask is powerful
it pumps my blood with power
the sea is another story
the sea is not a question of power
I have to learn alone
to turn my body without force
in the deep element.

And now: it is easy to forget
what I came for
among so many who have always
lived here
swaying their crenellated fans
between the reefs
and besides
you breathe differently down here.

I came to explore the wreck.
The words are purposes.
The words are maps.
I came to see the damage that was done
and the treasures that prevail.
I stroke the beam of my lamp
slowly along the flank
of something more permanent
than fish or weed

the thing I came for:
the wreck and not the story of the wreck
the thing itself and not the myth
the drowned face always staring
toward the sun
the evidence of damage
worn by salt and sway into this threadbare beauty
the ribs of the disaster
curving their assertion
among the tentative haunters.

This is the place.
And I am here, the mermaid whose dark hair
streams black, the merman in his armored body.
We circle silently
about the wreck
we dive into the hold.
I am she: I am he

whose drowned face sleeps with open eyes
whose breasts still bear the stress
whose silver, copper, vermeil cargo lies
obscurely inside barrels
half-wedged and left to rot
we are the half-destroyed instruments
that once held to a course
the water-eaten log
the fouled compass

We are, I am, you are
by cowardice or courage
the one who find our way
back to this scene
carrying a knife, a camera
a book of myths
in which
our names do not appear.

from: Diving into the Wreck: Poems 1971-1972. Copyright 1973. 

Breath Deep the Gathering Gloom . . .

tiny white flowers with green foliage

. . . Or the Shining Bloom . . .

Quote(s) of the Day

A poem is a sword.

founder of: Mirman Baheer.

(Note: When I attempted to post a link to this organization,
 which reaches out to and supports women, all links were "down.")
The goals of Mirman Baheer include:
(i) rallying women for organised efforts on cultural and social issues in compliance with values of Islam;
(ii) supporting women rights in accordance with Islamic Law, the Constitution, and the Declaration of Human Rights;
(iii) efforts to ensure access to education for Afghan women across the country;
(iv) efforts to eliminate excessive traditional practices;
(v) support for the role of women in social activities;
(vi) organising development programmes to enhance women’s skills and talents;
(viii) increasing awareness of women and promoting recognition of women's rights.

quill pen with black feather

When power leads man to arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the area of man's concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of his existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses.

-- President John Kennedy

Sunday, April 29, 2012


   by Maya Angelou

Lying, thinking
Last night
How to find my soul a home
Where water is not thirsty
And bread loaf is not stone
I came up with one thing
And I don't believe I'm wrong
That nobody,
But nobody
Can make it out here alone.

Alone, all alone
Nobody, but nobody
Can make it out here alone.

There are some millionaires
With money they can't use
Their wives run round like banshees
Their children sing the blues
They've got expensive doctors
To cure their hearts of stone.
But nobody
No, nobody
Can make it out here alone.

Alone, all alone
Nobody, but nobody
Can make it out here alone.

Now if you listen closely
I'll tell you what I know
Storm clouds are gatheringbright yellow pansy growing in gray sidewalk
The wind is gonna blow
The race of man is suffering
And I can hear the moan,
'Cause nobody,
But nobody
Can make it out here alone.

Alone, all alone
Nobody, but nobody
Can make it out here alone.

from: Oh Pray My Wings Are Gonna Fit Me Well. Copyright 1975. 

These are DRAWINGS

Hyper-realism by

Paul Cadden

[T]hey utilise additional, often subtle, pictorial elements to create the illusion of a reality which in fact either does not exist or cannot be seen by the human eye. Furthermore, they may incorporate emotional, social, cultural and political thematic elements as an extension of the painted visual illusion; a distinct departure from the older and considerably more literal school of Photorealism.

hyper-realistic graphite drawing of an old man smoking cigarette

hyper-realistic drawing of young man's face with water pouring off of it

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Fiddler Jones

sunset with blues oranges and reds
The earth keeps some vibration going
There in your heart, and that is you.
And if the people find you can fiddle,
Why, fiddle you must, for all your life.
What do you see, a harvest of clover?
Or a meadow to walk through to the river?
The wind's in the corn; you rub your hands
For beeves hereafter ready for market;
Or else you hear the rustle of skirts
Like the girls when dancing at Little Grove.
To Cooney Potter a pillar of dust
Or whirling leaves meant ruinous drouth;
They looked to me like Red-Head Sammy
Stepping it off, to "Toor-a-Loor."
How could I till my forty acres
Not to speak of getting more,
With a medley of horns, bassoons and piccolos
Stirred in my brain by crows and robins
And the creak of a wind-mill--only these?
And I never started to plow in my life
That some one did not stop in the road
And take me away to a dance or picnic.
I ended up with forty acres;
I ended up with a broken fiddle--
And a broken laugh, and a thousand memories,
And not a single regret.

Recycling at its Most Beautiful

Friday, April 27, 2012

What Wild-Eyed Murderer

   by Peter Meinke

crown of thorns, hammer, board
We shouldn’t worship suffering: the world’s
a spinning rack where suffering indicates
all goes well we’re alive and not curled
up in the black hushhush death dictates
as its first condition: no screaming there
We crown ourselves with thorns of past
transgressions Sharp spears of deed spare
no rib of pain: around the cross crashed
common lightning usual blood Who earns
our reverence should break both cross and crutch
in the face of suffering: while the rack turns
and tightens they’ll smile at the sense of touch
Suffering’s too common to be worth
anything joy too rare to be priced
The saints we search for will embrace the earth:
what wild-eyed murderer suffers less than Christ?

from: The Contracted World: New & More Selected Poems. Copyright 2006.

Quote of the Day

I started out with nothin', and I've still got most of it left.

Perhaps a Marathon . . . Or a Bake Sale . . .

painting of teacher with head down on the papers on her desk

The Stages of Grading 

Stage I

Stage I begins in benign resentment. You’re determined, this time, not to let those 80 term papers and final exams destroy you. It won’t be like the last grading marathon at semester’s end. You will stay in charge. You have 800 pages to grade, 400 on American Drama and 400 on Literary Theory. You take out your purple grading pen.
“Power serves as an overhanging subconscious,” says the first sentence. You experience your first twinges of pain. But it’s mild, still mild. You can still giggle at the assertion that “we adopt our social roles in order to panda to society.” You picture your social role—your teacher persona—as a black-and-white herbivore performing in a zoo for a crowd of unruly students. Then a character in a play you read this semester, you learn, suffers from “post-dramatic stress disorder.” He’s also in a “post-depressive state.” You’re still pre-, but barely.

Stage II

Stage II presents with mild but steady localized pain, mostly along the GI tract, and an inability to concentrate. Despair is still contained, but it’s eyeing the lymphatic system’s freedom train. Women are “co-modified.” Men are “discluded.” Role models are “immolated.” Passages are “taken out of context due to objective reality.” “Often times” is everywhere.
Bad things are happening to language.
Martin Luther King, Jr. is “African,” while Shakespeare’s Othello is “African American,” and Shylock is “a Hebrew.”

Stage III

This stage manifests in moderate but bearable generalized pain.


Thursday, April 26, 2012

Wild Nights – Wild Nights!

photo of Kate moss walking by the sea taken by Corine Dayby Emily Dickinson

Wild Nights – Wild Nights!
Were I with thee
Wild Nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile – the winds –
To a heart in port –
Done with the compass –
Done with the chart!

Rowing in Eden –
Ah, the sea!
Might I moor – Tonight –
In thee!


The Cat, the Wife, and the Weapon - Leann Sweeney

These books make me a bit nostalgic for my quilting days. Sigh.

And what is with that assistant coroner? How can she still have a job?

All I have to say is that Jillian handles her with more grace than I ever would. (But then she has a better writer than I have.)

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Wonderful Find for Poetry Month

is a website featuring regular people, reciting their favorite poems.

Our goal is simple: use technology to help folks share their love of poetry with others.


The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland Aged 42 and Three-Quarters - Barbara Silkstone


I'll be honest. This woman does not think things through.

Alice is a grandmother but her thought processes put me in mind of someone much younger with much less experience. Still it was an interesting read.

NOTE: These are not, in any way, meant to be comprehensive reviews.  
They are intended to acknowledge that I have read the book and give my honest core impressions. 

If a real review is what you wish, there are many wonderful book blogs available, and I have provided some tools to find them under the tab marked "Useful."

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

POETRY: Read More, Blog More #4

When I returned to school as a "mature" student, my quest for a Bachelor's degree and Teaching credential took most of my time and even more of my limited intellectual resources - with precious little of either left for leisure reading. 

But I hate being caught out at odd times with nothing to read. You know those times when for one reason or another you end up with extra time - not enough to do something constructive but enough to drive you crazy.

So I began to carry a book of poetry wherever I went.
(A practice I continue to this day) 

Most poetry collections have the virtue of being small and portable while still offering real gems that can be read when time, and concentration, are limited.

It was also at this time that I developed a love of Haiku, first reading, then writing.

Successful Haiku capture and share the essence of an experience rather than a describing it. This is both the strength of the form and its challenge. For many folks, including myself, the time spent with each tiny, exquisite poem can also easily become a meditation.


Matsuo Basho remains a giant in the field, and I'm saving my pennies to purchase Basho's Journey: The Literary Prose Of Matsuo Basho

A crow
has settled on a bare branch -
 autumn evening.
- - Matsuo Basho

Early on I became quite enamored of some of the ladies. Two of my favorite volumes are, Chiyo-ni Woman Haiku Master and Far Beyond the Field: Haiku By Japanese Women.

to be in a world
eating white rice
amid plum fragrance
- - Chiyo-ni

one naked baby
is all I've got
and I pray
- - Ishibashi Hideno

I've also come across a few surprises along the way. For instance, did you know that Jack Kerouac wrote Haiku

Trying to study sutras,
the kitten on my page
Demanding attention
- - Jack Kerouac

Some other favorites include: 
The Haiku Year, a compilation of Haiku written by some surprising people, one for each day of the year.

No desire
to read the news - 
my life's enough for now
- - Jim McKay

Haiku U., by David M. Bader, makes literary allusion fun.

The Sun Also Rises

"Why can't we?" she said.
"War wound," I said. "Oy," Cohn said.
Back to Harry's Bar.
- - Ernest Hemingway (sort of)

Then there's If Not For The Cat, Haiku for children, by Jack Prelutsky.

When I raise my tail,
Expressing my displeasure,
Even wolves make tracks.
- - Jack Prelutsky

small conifer bonsai tree in a green dish radiating out to the leftThe Essential Haiku, ed. Robert Hass & The Haiku Anthology, ed. Cor Van Den Heuvel, are also mainstays.

There are many interesting links out there: online journals, poetry societies . . . Here are just a few.


The Gunslinger - Stephen King

This is my second trip through the series. Thanks to the Dark Tower Reading Challenge, I have encouragement and may actually finish the it. (I only made it through book 4 the first time around.)

I enjoyed this, the first installment, and am buoyed to continue. As I recall, the first time around with each passing book I felt less like I was reading a book, and more like I was actually making the endless voyage with Roland.

Question for those of you who have read any of the series. Who did you picture as Roland?

I always saw him as Rutger Hauer. Rugged, kind of scary, but still handsome.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Spell-Checker Poem

- Mark Eckman & Jerrold H. Zar

I have a spelling checker,
It came with my PC.
It plane lee marks four my revue
Miss steaks aye can knot sea.
Eye ran this poem threw it,
Your sure reel glad two no.
Its vary polished in it's weigh.
My checker tolled me sew.
A checker is a bless sing,
It freeze yew lodes of thyme.
It helps me right awl stiles two reed,
And aides me when eye rime.
Each frays come posed up on my screen
Eye trussed too bee a joule.
The checker pours o'er every word
To cheque sum spelling rule.
Bee fore a veiling checker's
Hour spelling mite decline,
And if we're lacks oar have a laps,
We wood bee maid too wine.
Butt now bee cause my spelling
Is checked with such grate flare,
Their are know fault's with in my cite,
Of nun eye am a wear.
Now spelling does knot phase me,
It does knot bring a tier.
My pay purrs awl due glad den
With wrapped word's fare as hear.
spelling, surely there is software for thatTo rite with care is quite a feet
Of witch won should bee proud,
And wee mussed dew the best wee can,
Sew flaw's are knot aloud.
Sow ewe can sea why aye dew prays
Such soft wear four pea seas,
And why eye brake in two averse
Buy righting want too pleas.

And the Lesson for Today is . . .

Elements of Style, Strunk & White. (online via: Bartleby . com) (offline: many places)

(and Thanks to: Melody & Words)

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Myth of Devotion

    by Louise Glück

Hades kneels by the prone body of Persephone
When Hades decided he loved this girl
he built for her a duplicate of earth,
everything the same, down to the meadow,
but with a bed added.
Everything the same, including sunlight,
because it would be hard on a young girl
to go so quickly from bright light to utter darkness
Gradually, he thought, he'd introduce the night,
first as the shadows of fluttering leaves.
Then moon, then stars. Then no moon, no stars.
Let Persephone get used to it slowly.
In the end, he thought, she'd find it comforting.
A replica of earth
except there was love here.
Doesn't everyone want love?
He waited many years,
building a world, watching
Persephone in the meadow.
Persephone, a smeller, a taster.
If you have one appetite, he thought,
you have them all.
Doesn't everyone want to feel in the night
the beloved body, compass, polestar,
to hear the quiet breathing that says
I am alive, that means also
you are alive, because you hear me,
you are here with me. And when one turns,
the other turns—
That's what he felt, the lord of darkness,
looking at the world he had
constructed for Persephone. It never crossed his mind
that there'd be no more smelling here,
certainly no more eating.
Guilt? Terror? The fear of love?
These things he couldn't imagine;
no lover ever imagines them.
He dreams, he wonders what to call this place.
First he thinks: The New Hell. Then: The Garden.
In the end, he decides to name it
Persephone's Girlhood.
A soft light rising above the level meadow,
behind the bed. He takes her in his arms.
He wants to say I love you, nothing can hurt you
but he thinks
this is a lie, so he says in the end
you're dead, nothing can hurt you
which seems to him
a more promising beginning, more true.

from: Averno. Copyright 2006.
illustration: Sandara.

Quote of the Day

It is true that some of the characters speak coarsely. That is because people speak coarsely in real life.

Especially soldiers and hardworking men speak coarsely, and even our most sheltered children know that.

And we all know, too, that those words really don’t damage children much. They didn’t damage us when we were young.

It was evil deeds and lying that hurt us.


Saturday, April 21, 2012


long crooked ladder that gets smaller as it goes higher
Filene's department store
near nineteen-fifty-three:
An Aunt Jemima floor
display. Red bandanna,

Apron holding white rolls
of black fat fast against
the bubbling pancakes, bowls
and bowls of pale batter.

This is what Donna sees,
across the "Cookwares" floor,
and hears "Donnessa?" Please,
This can not be my aunt.

Father's long-gone sister,
nineteen-fifty-three. "Girl?"
Had they lost her, missed her?
This is not the question.

This must not be my aunt.
Jemima? Pays the rent.
Family mirrors haunt
their own reflections.

Ladders. Sisters. Nieces.
As soon as a live Jemima
as a buck-eyed rhesus
monkey. Girl? Answer me.

from: The Venus Hottentot. Copyright 2004.

Quote of the Day

I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas, but what I decided to do was to fulfill my profession which I entered before my husband was in public life.

 - Hillary Clinton, Nightline.


Friday, April 20, 2012

My First Memory (of Librarians)

cartoon of Librarian with desk plate that says search engine
    by Nikki Giovanni
This is my first memory:
A big room with heavy wooden tables that sat on a creaky
       wood floor
A line of green shades—bankers’ lights—down the center
Heavy oak chairs that were too low or maybe I was simply
       too short
              For me to sit in and read
So my first book was always big

In the foyer up four steps a semi-circle desk presided
To the left side the card catalogue
On the right newspapers draped over what looked like
       a quilt rack
Magazines face out from the wall

The welcoming smile of my librarian
The anticipation in my heart
All those books—another world—just waiting
At my fingertips.

from: Acolytes by Nikki. Copyright 2007. 

Job Hunting Sux?

Paul Bibeau has an interesting take on the subject
 over at Goblinbooks.

ziggy comic says the company relocated and didn't tell me where

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Quote of the Day

Tolerance implies no lack of commitment to one’s own beliefs.
Rather it condemns the oppression or persecution of others.

- John F. Kennedy

globe held up by many different hands

After Reading Lao Tzu

The one who speaks does not know.    
The one who knows does not speak,

wrote the old master, which perhaps describes
the situation. Meaning we were all sad.

Meaning that when you were seized by desire,
it was nothing more than flesh, bared above the collarbone

she poured the long night of herself
into empty coffee cans and cornfields

and brushed by air. Meaning: It's chemical. So
that when the moon rears its parched head,

her eyes a mask on her face, the livestock snorting and pacing, 
her absent husband...she died young

when you feel a finger grazing your neck, 
it's only wind created by the movement of

her daughter crying and lighting
fires under the bed

your own body. Downdraft. Live 
stock. Because sadness is multiplied 

don't worry, she told me, 
you can’t inherit this

by sadness. A cradle of no compare. 
Loose conspiracy of mind and body, 

dough swelling over the edge of the bowl, 
the yeasty smell of it, a disease that is 

a blanket over the window 
a pillow over the face

known and not spoken and 
also the other one,

who speaks and does not know
what to say.

From: The Sleep Hotel. Copyright 2010. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Our Nation's Sons

paing on side of a brick building of a young man wearing a hoodie

As Relevant Today As Ever

one tear falling from lashes of closed eye

Pity the Nation
- Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Pity the nation whose people are sheep
And whose shepherds mislead them
Pity the nation whose leaders are liars
Whose sages are silenced
And whose bigots haunt the airwaves
Pity the nation that raises not its voice
Except to praise its conquerers
And acclaim the bully as hero
And aims to rule the world
By force and by torture
Pity the nation that knows
No other language but its own
And no other culture but its own
Pity the nation whose breath is money
And sleeps the sleep of the too well fed
Pity the nation Oh pity the people
Who allow their rights to erode
And their freedoms to be washed away
My country, tears of thee
Sweet land of liberty!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

The Emperor of Ice-Cream

    by Wallace Stevens
Call the roller of big cigars,
The muscular one, and bid him whip
In kitchen cups concupiscent curds.
Let the wenches dawdle in such dress
As they are used to wear, and let the boys
Bring flowers in last month's newspapers.
Let be be finale of seem.drawing of an emperor in a coffee cup with ice cream
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

Take from the dresser of deal,
Lacking the three glass knobs, that sheet
On which she embroidered fantails once
And spread it so as to cover her face.
If her horny feet protrude, they come
To show how cold she is, and dumb.
Let the lamp affix its beam.
The only emperor is the emperor of ice-cream.

(In Key West it was apparently a tradition to have ice cream at funerals.)

Quote(s) of the Day


Compassion is not weakness, 

and concern for the unfortunate is not socialism.

- Hubert H. Humphrey.
"The New Deal", Painting/Mural by Conrad A. Albrizio.

1. Blessed are the poor in spirit (recognizing poverty in spiritual things, being grateful to God and realizing our need for Him), for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

2. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

3. Blessed are the meek (notice it doesn’t say “weak” but “meek”/humble), for they shall inherit the earth.

4. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.

5. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.

6. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

7. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

8. Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 - Jesus, Matthew 5:3-12 (NKJV)
beatitudes word cloud

Monday, April 16, 2012

Quote of the Day

. . . But the judgment of God is upon the church as never before.

If today's church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church, it will lose its authenticity, forfeit the loyalty of millions, and be dismissed as an irrelevant social club with no meaning for the twentieth century.

Every day I meet young people whose disappointment with the church has turned into outright disgust.

Perhaps I have once again been too optimistic.

Is organized religion too inextricably bound to the status quo to save our nation and the world? . . .

- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from a Birmingham Jail.

a tree lined path with a person walking in the distance


- John Burnside

It’s moments like this
when the barman goes through the back
and leaves me alone

a radio whispering
somewhere amongst the glasses
- I’m through with love -

the way the traffic slows
to nothing
how all of a sudden
at three in the afternoon
charcoal of woman alone at a bar
the evening’s already begun
a nascent

By ten I’ll be walking away
on Union Street
or crossing Commercial Road
in a gust of rain

and everyone who passes
will be you
or almost you
before it’s someone else.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Tyger

tiger looking straight into the camera
    by William Blake
Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

In what distant deeps or skies
Burnt the fire of thine eyes?
On what wings dare he aspire?
What the hand, dare sieze the fire?

And what shoulder, & what art,
Could twist the sinews of thy heart?
And when thy heart began to beat,
What dread hand? & what dread feet?

What the hammer? what the chain?
In what furnace was thy brain?
What the anvil? what dread grasp
Dare its deadly terrors clasp?

When the stars threw down their spears,
And water'd heaven with their tears,
Did he smile his work to see?
Did he who made the Lamb make thee?

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?

Saturday, April 14, 2012

From you have I been absent in the spring

(Sonnet 98)
    by William Shakespeare
From you have I been absent in the spring,
When proud-pied April, dressed in all his trim,
Hath put a spirit of youth in everything,
That heavy Saturn laughed and leaped with him,
Yet nor the lays of birds, nor the sweet smell
Of different flowers in odor and in hue,
Could make me any summer's story tell,
Or from their proud lap pluck them where they grew.
Nor did I wonder at the lily's white,
Nor praise the deep vermilion in the rose;
They were but sweet, but figures of delight,
Drawn after you, you pattern of all those.
     Yet seemed it winter still, and, you away,
     As with your shadow I with these did play.

Quote of the Day

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter

- Martin Luther King Jr.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Another Birthday Boy with a Few Good Words

Painting of Christopher Hitchens by Allison Bruns

Picture all experts as if they were mammals.

Never be a spectator of unfairness or stupidity.

Seek out argument and disputation for their own sake; the grave will supply plenty of time for silence.

Suspect your own motives, and all excuses.

Do not live for others any more than you would expect others to live for you.

Flying at Night

    by Ted Kooser
starry night sky

Above us, stars. Beneath us, constellations.
Five billion miles away, a galaxy dies
like a snowflake falling on water. Below us,
some farmer, feeling the chill of that distant death,
snaps on his yard light, drawing his sheds and barn
back into the little system of his care.
All night, the cities, like shimmering novas,
tug with bright streets at lonely lights like

from: Flying at Night: Poems 1965-1985. Copyright 1980.

A Few Words From the Birthday Boy



- to Rev. Charles Clay, January 27, 1790



- to James Madison, December 20, 1787 (first two sentences);
- to P.S. Dupont de Nemours, April 24, 18l6 (last sentence).



- to John Wyche, May 19, 1809 (first sentence);
- to George Washington, January 4, 1786 (second sentence).

Signature ~ Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, April 12, 2012

from: The Waste Land . . . in LOLSpeak

by Corprew Reed.
Apologies to T.S. Eliot

I. IM IN UR WASTELAND BURYING UR DEADlavender lilacs with yellow butterfly
april hates u, makes lilacs, u no can has. (1)
april in ur memoriez, making ur desire.
spring rain in ur dull rootzes.

earth in ur winter, covered in snow
can has potato. PO-TA-TO.
im in ur hofgarden, drinking ur coffeez.

at archduke's haus, invisible sled!
im in ur moutainz, holding on tight.
no can has cheezburger.
oral sex metaphors in ur poem.

in ur stones, whar r treez? (19)
whar r bushez?
ceiling cat cannot say.
im in redrock, hiding from sunz.

commin ze redrock.
im in ur handfull of dust,
showing ur fear.
redrock, redrock.
whar r wind?
in ur homelandz, freshening ur windz
can has hyacinths,
no can has tongue.
Isolde u down teh rivers.

Sosotris Cat has smartz, (43)
can see bukkit,
dead sailorz in bukkit,
hooked on fonicians.
belladonna in ur rocks,
situating ur situations.
man has three staves,
turning wheelz,
Sosotris Cat no can has hanged man:
avoid bukkit or u drownz.

i see dead peoplez under bridge,
i see dead peoplez on der streets,
walrus has clocks, says NEIN.
bodiez in ur garden, sprouting ur zombies
dog no can has zombies!

She has shiny chair,
with tacky decor.
ornate fornicate apellate,
king in teh philomel,
shoutin up teh desert.
world cries 'jub jub bird,'
or is diffrent poem?
time killing everythingz,
platos cave wall,
forms in teh cave,
shuffling in teh stairs,
hushing teh room,
ushering teh fatez.

"i has bad nerves.
u can has speeches?
u can has thoughts?
u can has thinkings?"

dead manz no bonez!!!?!

ceiling cat is watching you masturbate.
no see, no know, no remember butt.

o o o o (125)
shakespeare rag is smartness.
im in teh street, walkens.
im in ur schedule,
measuring out ur life in teh coffee spoonz.

LOL hurry.
LOL can has fake teeth?
LOL ur husband back from war,
wants some more.
LOL hurry.
LOL in your bed, makinz teh kiddles.
LOL drugz LOL!
LOL eating lambz.
LOL goodnight

if teh river running, why not moving?
nymphoz gone.
river has trash no more.
nymphoz and friends left,
no can find.
shakey bones with big laughs r here!

Copyright 2007.

Medieval Tweets

by Michael Camille

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The only poem

clock gears exploded view and numbered
Leonard Cohen
This is the only poem
I can read
I am the only one
can write it
I didn’t kill myself
when things went wrong
I didn’t turn
to drugs or teaching
I tried to sleep
but when I couldn’t sleep
I learned to write
I learned to write
what might be read
on nights like this
by one like me
from: The Energy of Slaves.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Naming of Cats

 by T.S. Elliot 

The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn't just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there's the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey-
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter-
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that's particular,
A name that's peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum-
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there's still one name left over,white cat with red yarn wig and red and white polka dot scarf
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover-
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.

from: Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Quote of the Day

The only part of the conduct of any one, for which he is amenable to society, is that which concerns others. 

In the part which merely concerns himself, his independence is, of right, absolute. Over himself, over his own body and mind, the individual is sovereign.

- John Stuart Mill, On Liberty.

hand with shackle trying to stop hand with whip


Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter - Seth Grahame-Smith       

It is a crime, plain and simple, how much history has been kept from us. 

And I've heard recent rumblings . . . rewriting the history books again . . . taking even more out . . .

How do we fight an evil that rewrites the narrative, obscures the real enemy?

Oh No!

NOTE: These are not, in any way, meant to be comprehensive reviews.  
They are intended to acknowledge that I have read the book and give my honest core impressions. 

If a real review is what you wish, there are many wonderful book blogs available, and I have provided some tools to find them under the tab marked "Useful."

Black Petal

    by Li-Young Lee 

I never claimed night fathered me.
that was my dead brother talking in his sleep. 
I keep him under my pillow, a dear wish
that colors my laughing and crying.

I never said the wind, remembering nothing,
leaves so many rooms unaccounted for, 
continual farewell must ransom
the unmistakable fragrance
our human days afford.

It was my brother, little candle in the pulpit,
reading out loud to all of earth
from the book of night.

He died too young to learn his name.
Now he answers to Vacant Boat,
Burning Wing, My Black Petal.

Ask him who his mother is. He'll declare the birds
have eaten the path home, but each of us
joins night's ongoing story
wherever night overtakes him,
the heart astonished to find belonging
and thanks answering thanks. 

Ask if he's hungry or thirsty,
he'll say he's the bread come to pass
and draw you a map
to the twelve secret hips of honey.

Does someone want to know the way to spring?
He'll remind you
the flower was never meant to survive
the fruit's triumph.

He says an apple's most secret cargo
is the enduring odor of a human childhood,
our mother's linen pressed and stored, our father's voice
walking through the rooms.

He says he's forgiven our sister
for playing dead and making him cry
those afternoons we were left alone in the house.

And when clocks frighten me with their long hair,
and when I spy the wind's numerous hands
in the orchard unfastening
first the petals from the buds,
then the perfume from the flesh,

my dead brother ministers to me. His voice
weighs nothing
but the far years between
stars in their massive dying,

and I grow quiet hearing
how many of both of our tomorrows
lie waiting inside it to be born.

from: Book of My Nights. Copyright 2001.