Daily Archives: August 14, 2011

73 posts

“A Poem From an Ant” by William Wright Harris

How like an ant
crawling up
a tree I am;

sifting through these
miles of papers,
through boundless books.

Those odes of Keats and Neruda
embracing nature- nearly
forgetting humanity.

Sonnets of Petrarch
and Shakespeare,
Frost and Cummings.

The haiku
of Basho
and Kerouac,

Li Po kissing the moon
and drowning, drowning
in pale lips parted too far.

Scribbling villanelles
aside Thomas and Plath,
Sestinas after Pound and Bishop.

My legs scatter
up this great

bark growing
wider with every step

“Ode on a Rag” by William Wright Harris

My Heart is a rag
wrung too dry.

Fingers ran-
wolves through my cloth-

claws slashing fibers,
fangs mutilating strands.

Tag worn from the
taxes of existence.

She twisted me, until
I collapsed on myself.

All to discard me, one day,
with the rest of the trash.

“Ode to a Greek Salad” by William Wright Harris

tomatoes red as achilles' blood left in the land of ilion
kalamata olives deep as helen"s hair

cucumbers proud as pan then happily sliced
feta cheese white as the clouds in zeus' beard

bell peppers greener than the gaze of hera
onions purple the cold lips of cassandra bent skyward

olive oil poured like ambrosia over
lettuce as crisp as the hips of gaia

held lovingly in your hand before
being thrust inside you

being needed
being loved

at once nourishing and pleasing
i envy you

“Honesty” by William Wright Harris

Salvador Dali,
if I could only
create something
as beautiful as The Persistence of Memory.

Black ants marching
over an orange timepiece,
sprinkling disease- Death-

Sad clocks, lamenting
existence- sagging
the edges of gravity and spirituality-
from a tree.

To depict myself as honestly
as you, with your face bent towards the dark deep.
All sleeping

under the cliffs of Catalonia.

“Telemachus” by Elisabeth Vodola

Kill the fatted calf
For the prodigal's return,
His homecoming delayed
So that every Greek could learn
Of his great feats.

Thank the gods we just survived.
So many his recklessness
Plunged to nameless deaths,
As, against all caution and advice,
Athena's monkey strung out his far-flung stunts,
Ennui the only enemy he never tried to slay.

And meanwhile, here in Ithaca, my mother
(Open to every insult greed and lust contrive),
Has raised me from my infancy alone.
My mother, whom gray-souled Athena
Slandered to my very face.
How I wish that then and there I'd loosed the rage
That volleyed through my brain,
Use me as she might.

My mother does not follow Folly's footsteps.
Long have I stood by her loom as she wove and stitched
Depictions of our happy life:
Our rooms, our sheep and goats, my toys,
The hills and trees and birds that grace our days:
These she drew in threads sweetened by her breath
On the window's soft breeze.
At her side I learned the sea's infinity,
And to search in myself for words to praise its colors.

Not for me, a foreign hero's stinking shield,
Putrid with sweat and gore.
He worked his work, the master strategist:
Chop til you drop, destroy Troy, create Rome,
Sail--ten years--home.

Listen how each story finds its close:
In one, the grieving father Achilles lets
Bury his slain son in regal state.
But in our tale, though now deciding peace,
The crimson-fingered goddess has Eupeithes killed:
Three generations--my rabid self--pummel him in turn.

He spoke too much truth: his rapier tongue
Impaled that maggot's maw, my father's selfish soul.
Though Old Endurance put much the same
Into a fictive mouth: "Carnage suited me."
And earlier, in rage to Agamemnon:
For us, life is war and war is life.
Well, he worked his work, and I will see to mine.
Enough the world will ever after know the sins
Of those who sailed to Troy on smoke-filled winds.

“The Tea Party Sonnet” by James G. Piatt

I listen to hoary words of protest,
They are mealy diatribes of straw,
A trip into the world of continuous flaw;
Standing on street corners all abreast,
Wearing American flags all neatly pressed,
With their strident loud guffaw,
Decrying for Obama to withdraw,
In the darkness of the moody night
While marching heatedly to an fro,
They yell and scream in panic fright
Trying to keep all of their green dough,
They keep all the truth out of the light,
In doing so, create misery and woe.

“Getting Old” by James G. Piatt

I'm getting old as dust
I'm cranky and I'm tired
My hair is gray and falling out
I have fallen arches and my
Wrinkles have wrinkles
My teeth are just fine
You can view them in a
Glass by my bed
I eat more pills than food
I wear trifocals and a
Hot pad on my butt
I watch retro TV
And my idea of being groovy
Is listening to old records of
Como, Sinatra, and the Beach Boys
My idea of dancing with the
Stars is watching old movies
With Astair and Rogers
However, I don't complain
Because I am told
That the other place
I can
Go is hot as hell

“No-Sense” by James G. Piatt

Have you ever heard a symphony with deaf ears,
The floor moves in waves,
The air pulsates in your unhearing ears,
It is like experiencing
A painting when you are blind,
Colors and shapes, within your mind,
Creep across the membranes of your memories,
Like feeling a kitten, when you
Have no hands – softness enters your thoughts,
It is like tasting chocolate
When you have no taste buds,
Smooth and sweet,
But, of course, those things can never occur
When you have no senses,
Funny how one never appreciates,
Senses when you have them.

“Blank Page” by Brian Batchelor

There it is, blank and barren,
vast in all its naked glory, a
sliver of past, present, future;
it beckons, this white noise,

this rectangle pool of refuge,
promising the holy healing waters
of could be's and what if's.
Its solemn pledge to hold

my words in eternal silence
goes unsaid -- or unwritten --
and I vow to give myself
never to take because I have

already taken so much. I am
timid, though, dipping my quivering
toe in the coarse milk
testing, gauging, prodding.

And it sits, calm, patient, awaiting
my feral travails and pathetic
proofs that, yes, here I can
be my own disappointment.

“There Is Nothing But Immortality*” by Elisabeth Vodola

When all that we've ever been, and are,
Returns to our originating star--what then?
Surely the forms remain,
Whether or not there subsists a comprehending brain.
It's true, there seems no voice that to us de profundis speaks:
Our view is from and to, and over, barren peaks;
Yet even in--if--a final existential race
To an infinitely minuscule embrace--
How could the forms disappear,
Being simply, not in that way, there?

* "I swear I think there is nothing but immortality" --Walt Whitman, "To Think of Time," Leaves of Grass, 1855, ed. J. Kaplan, 1982, p. 106.

“Roof Over My Head” by Sarah Gamutan

It is like a home- your safety.
It can be you. It can be the stars

It's where your happiness is
Where your soul dances with me

Not just another typical poetry
Aye, you fulfill my existence

Not just a typical lover
You forgive my shortcomings

Probably, you are my god
I have always been protected

I really can't figure out
But I shan't tremble with fear

It will give me a vision
That is within and intimate

It is how you respond
It is how you react and defy

those forces, the inevitable

“Definiens of Submissiveness” by Sarah Gamutan

I am convinced by these random
Variables that constitute your
Statistic. My soul yearns to beautify
Your existence- the definiendum.
You're my sweetheart with petals
And thorns- still you are explicit,

Forthright and unreserved.
I want to put your countenance
On jewels and riches. Yet,
I fear my oblivion. Still I, being poor,
Have only my dreams. You will still
Reside on my deepest desires.
Your preservation, I do desire.

“Escape!” by Lori Ulrich

I can't put them in a box
they rattle the lid
make slurping sounds
like an infant

Not to be confined
words have detonated
inside my head
they rabble around
shake cages
hook together in lines
snake their way through the bars
out, onto this page
demand I put them together

I stretch out the lines
pin them on the page
snip prune edit the roughness
tweak the story
eradicate imperfection

Enraged, it bleeds red
wants to be raw

The heart is a poem

“Consonsants and Vowels” by Lori Ulrlich

the softness of a consonant
ends in calm
I can't scream an "m"

"a's" are loud
open mouthed,
vowels breathe low, open
cold breaths of voice gush out,
urgency of messages blow into the cloisters of wind

I can hear myself
scream out my own name, as I
listen to the high pitched tone,
disturbances split the sky
as the echo is carried away in the wind

I feel the chill
of an open mouthed vowel
as it parts the air

the softness of a consonant
ends in calm
I can't scream an "m"

“Muse – The Departure” by Lori Ulrich

He used to flirt with me
outside my bedroom window
remove his top hat,
bow low,
shake his red-haired leaves unabashed
let them spread across wet earth,
a blanket of color, tones of reds, rusts, oranges,
his fiery brilliance
quilting the ground

I used to rush out to him, bare footed,
dance in his tousle of leaves,
skip across browned grasses
throw myself down in the petticoats of color
stare at the night skies
count the stars
reach up with my arms
embrace my Muse

He used to frost my windows
with his icy fresh breath,
powder my walking path, icing sugar snow
And I
I didn't want to put my shoes on

I didn't want to play in the cold, lay with him,
make snow angels

Saddened, my Muse pulled on his wintery cloak, turned,
cast his top hat downwards, and walked away.
His footsteps disappeared
in a blizzard of words,
As they flew off my pages,
unsure of how to please me.

“Baked Potato of the Evening” by Robert O. Adair

Though the DOW plummets,
while Obamataxes grow,
inflation climbs the summit
and my capital is low.

Though the world be awaning,
and love puts out to sea,
on my parade it is a-raining
and my life is misery.

Baked potato of the evening,
how beautiful to see.
Drenched with sinful, golden butter,
how you fill my heart with glee.
The taste is just so utter,
I dissolve in ecstasy!

“What’s Worth It” by Lawrence William Barrett

A day time kind of guy
Dreams of a night time life
Always full of questions
Why he was never good enough.

Home is where my bed is
There is nothing to share there
But the rambling thoughts of a thinker
Who pretends to know about love.

I'm not a Washington kind of lifer
I breath fresh air in, not politics
But I love this country too
I fight for the love of my country.

Mom and Dad did give me my honor at birth
And they always taught me truth
Now I'm on my own writing praises
There is so much majority good here.

I know where the steeples are at
I live to give to the poor
My wallet is thin
But my love of people is rich
Love is what's worth it.

“Crystal” by Robert O. Adair

Her flashing smile,
like dawn breaking,
honey brown complexion
her soft brown eyes-
window to a soul,
caring, compassionate,
warm as spring sunlight
dispelling winter's frost.
Some beauty is skin deep,
some radiates from within
an outward sign of
inward grace.

“The Old Caboose in Winter” by Robert O. Adair

Sitting on blocks
underneath the stars,
and the snow-covered pines,
Old Number 114, from the now abandoned
Chestnut Ridge Railway.
The cupola a sleeping loft,
and a old pot bellied stove for heat.
Icicles hand from the edge of the roof,
a fence and a gate
help root it to the ground
where it rests.
And the whistle of a train
sounds in the distance.
O cabin car, come home
So we may end our days
after many an adventurous journey
over many weary miles,
with peace and usefulness
to the last.