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And so there are things all about us,
Fine things at that:
Hills, perhaps gently rolling, perhaps ending abruptly
Courtesy of the ministrations of some indifferent glacier
Rolling in and then receding with equal diffidence,
The song of some unseen child singing inaudible lyrics,
All tinkling-bell-a-twitter,
Some grand art nouveau city tower,
Festooned with angels on the balusters, gargoyles in the cornices
And they are wondrous indeed,
All with their own histories to relate,
But imbued with the regrettable tendency
To all speak at once, with no inclination to await their turn
Leaving us flummoxed and forlorn,
Shorn of any way to glean what would be precious
From the ore of babble,
But there are those with a certain ear, a certain eye
(Though such eyes may be accompanied by lenses
Thick as the headlight on some ancient VW microbus,
Perhaps without even such limited acuity)
Who can sort such tangles, weaving them together
In such a manner where this cacophony
Becomes something greater than the sum of its parts,
New yet familiar, things we know as true,
As must be true, their presentation to us
Signaled by nothing more than a mere clearing of the throat,
The rustling of some smple garment,
And at such a moment we must proceed
All openness and open to all things
And thence govern ourselves accordingly.
You, Korts, are linked inexorably to the likes of Wint, (in his ****** odd way), Natto, (in his Hebrew way), Victoria, (in her Liverpudlian way), Joel, (in his essentially cynical way), Terry O’Leary, (in his rhythmic tongue), r, Cyd …..and many others far too numerous to mention….and of course myself…for we are the progeny, the genetic linkage to the fabled and ancient, “Legion of Storytellers”.

In times past our forbearers roamed the globe when very few others chose to or, in fact, could. They found themselves orating nightly at the fireside, surrounded by spellbound, wide eyed listeners intent on hearing every nuance of wondrous tales of elsewhere. Tales of bravery and beauty, tragedy and outrage. Tales which caused the listener to weep, to wonder and to laugh uproariously. Tales which captured the imagination and sent the ordinary soul on his way pondering, expansively, things beyond his ken.

And in the morning, before the fireside ashes turned cold, the Storteller would be on his way to the next village, the next gathering of waiting listeners….for that is the role of the Storyteller in this life and beyond, spinning tales of immaculate colour and endeavor, laying the fabric of dreams and inspiration, painting the fantastical wonder of it all in the minds of the many.

And that, Korts, is what we do, thee and me….The worms which drive us impel the pen to write, impel the mind to create…the elixir of spindrift of that which we must.

Cheers Brother
M.
Planet Earth
Written as a heartfelt response to Wk kortas's delicious work "The Scarecrow in Exile"
More is incumbent on lesser than less
When caressing the hem of a younger *****’s dress
Thus imbibing oneself on accumulents more
Is absolving thyself from insulting the *****.
Didn’t thee see how immaculately
When chance played her hand in two out of three
The wonderment wound in a coil like a spring
When the Catholic Priest forgave everything?

Butternut pumpkins are round and obscene
Whilst carrots and nuts are ineffably clean,
Why worry thy head in matters of sin
When the good Catholic Father ropes everything in?
With the snap of a thumb and a wink of the eye
Absolution dispensed like manna on high,
The wonderment wound in a coil like a spring
When the Holy Father forgives everything.

Perhaps a trick of sleight of hand
I’ve pondered but don’t quite understand,
The complexity of right and wrong
When whispered soft or roared in song…..
Who decides the rate of flow,
Snuffs the candle, makes it glow?
What wonderment’s wound tight coiled spring
Impel the Eternal's perception-ing ?

M.
Planet Earth
4 March 2021
In the year 2016,
Yom Kippur was celebrated on Oct. 12th.
Leonard Cohen passed away on November 7th.


~~~

faint knocking heard at the heavenly door of the Tower of Song

the ministering angels, hearing a rhythmic,
lyrical rapping, sigh, thinking the atonement day,
the holiday/holy days, are supposedly over,
the human balancing act, the rush to judgement period,
all tallies totaled, the busy sale season for souls,
at last completed, each fate inscribed & sealed,
in the book of life^

but, always one,
the itinerant straggler, the last reluctant sinner,
a judgment resister, flaunting an almost expired coupon,
trumpeting demands for a recount, waving it,
claiming it, the bearer, entitled to a
mercy discount and an extra 30 days

"who shall we say is calling?"

the Angels are stunned to hear the responsa,
a familiar raspy, growling, almost indescribable,
yet, stammeringly beautiful voice enchanting,
equally asking and answering, (how both?)
with a strident humility, "a man in search of answers"

this voice, instantaneous recognizable,
the asking superfluous,
all beating wings now, all in vast excitement,
this psalmist, long awaited, one of His best,
a chosen one, a courtly singer in the Temple of his people,
blessed with the curse of seeing and believing,
the comprehension of beauty of the human superior interior,
never being quiet or quite satisfied,
in capturing, its multifarious variations,
in every language spoken

this is the man who took ten years
to compose just
one song,
one poem,
one word,
Hallelujah,
whose faith was strong,
but still needed proofs,
whose every breath of oxygen inhalation,
brought more questions,
every exhalation, only releasing partial answers,
and yet, still, yes, yes! finding hidden verses inside

a simple, everlasting
hallelujah

the hubbub subsides,
the man sings~speaks:
how came I here,
was I one, who by fire?
that fire afeared, that my finality
was spirit consumed?

in one voice, answers the angelic choir,
in one voice, the swaying back-up singers answer,
not by fire, not by water, not by stoning
or even drowning,
in tea that came from all the way from China

when sing we Angels,
the Judgement Day poem,
we alone, on high and above,
we, keepers of the books
and records of everyone,
are permitted this special query:

Who by Sufficiency?

you, the sidekick of the creator,
special commissioned by him, anointed to live a life of research,
record in word and song the mysteries of musical gene strings,
that intertwine the skin cells of man and woman,
man and his fellow us-human,
your soul commandeered, ordered, to delve deeper,
into the consolable chasm tween divine and mortals,
all those who are so poorly but perfectly constructed
in his image

you, who has earned his place, his best rest,
his works adjudged sufficient,
you, who best answered
this judging,
this calling out,
this calling in
incantation

Who by Sufficiency?

now forward on, write only of answers,
wade in the troubled waters no more,
no more passports, or borders to cross,
no more measuring the days,
the last road trip finale
finished & feted,
fate meted

no more changing thy name, changeling priest,^^
sing songs of solution, salvation,
for the questioning hours of confusion,
the urgency of revolution,
no longer need a hallelujah resolution,
you have been judged sufficient...
it is his will


                                                    | | |
Who By Fire                             Who By Fire, Who By Water:^
(lyrics by Leonard Cohen)     (A Yom Kippur Hebrew Prayer)

who by fire                             How many shall die and      

who by water,                                how many shall born,
Who in the sunshine,                 Who shall live      
who in the night time,                   who shall die,                      
Who by high                                Who at the measure of days,
who by common trial,                    and who before,
Who in your merry                            
                                                          Who by fire
month of May,                                 and who by water
Who by very                                 Who by sword,
slow decay,                                       and who by wild beasts,
And who shall I                      Who by hunger,
say is calling?                              and who by thirst,

And who in her,                           Who by earthquake
lonely slip,                                         and who by plague
who by barbiturate,                      Who by strangling,
Who in these                                    and who by stoning
realms of love,                               Who shall have rest,

who by,                                             and who shall go wandering,
something blunt,                            Who will be tranquil,
And who by avalanche,                  and who shall be harassed,
who by powder,                            Who shall be at ease,
Who for his greed,                           and who shall be afflicted,
who for his hunger,                      Who shall become rich,
And who shall I,                             and who shall become poor,
say is calling?                                Who will be raised high,
                                                         ­     and who will be brought low
And who by brave assent,                  
who by accident,
Who in solitude,
who in this mirror,
Who by,
his lady's command,
who by his own hand,
Who in mortal chains,
who in power,
And who shall I,
say is calling?




^From the liturgy of Rosh Hasanah, the Jewish New Year and Yom Kippur, the  Day of Atonement, there is this truly stunning prayer (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unetanneh_Tokef) in the Jewish liturgy. The Book of Life contents the fate of every sinner. From the first day of the new year, until ten days later, on Yom Kippur, depending on whether the sinner repents or not, his fate is sealed.
https://hellopoetry.com/poem/1833523/for-leonard-cohen-who-by-fire/
this first version first published Jan. 2017

^^"A Kohens ancestors were priests in the Temple of Jerusalem. A single such priest was known as a Kohen, and the hereditary caste descending from these priests is collectively known as the Kohanim.[2] As multiple languages were acquired through the Jewish diaspora, the surname acquired many variations." Today, with no temple, the limited role of the Kohanim is to bless the Jewish people on the high holy days with a  special prayer with abeloved tune,  instantly evocative (see wikipedia.org/wiki/Priestly_Blessing) The Kohanim are still revered, honored, and always called up first to the Sabbath reading of the weekly portion of the Old Testament

A thank you to Bex for proofing and encouragement.
Part I of a trilogy
For a  more detailed analysis of the roots of the song, "Who By Fire," and its origins, see:
_____________________________________________
http://www.leonardcohen-prologues.com/who_by_fire.htm

He worked on the song Hallelujah, arguably his most famous composition, for ten years.
You there.....

Calibrate your limit, multiply it by ten.....and you'll probably approximate your absolute tolerance to all those irrational people out there who try you to the limit, be it consciously or unconsciously....aint that so true?

All manner of extremes out there, just about as many variations as there are people on the planet...and then some because lots have multiple personalities and how you strike them depends, pretty much on the time of day, the fall of the cards or the state of their relationship with the better half

In other words, it is all a big gamble when you hold out your hand and say "Hello there".

I charge you, how long does it take to establish a good solid friendship? Takes years before the trust is ingrained to the degree that you believe implicitly, every word that person will say.

How long to make an enemy? You can do that in seconds by just looking at them the wrong way, let alone risk uttering something and, perhaps, letting that fool cat out of the bag, destroying any chance of the embryo of a friendship emerging.

Sad thing is our fellow man is much more likely to take offense than open his arms, his heart and mind to entering this special realm of friendship.

So I say to you..... that you embrace those who care.
You count your blessings for the few, true friends you have....and you approach every chance new meeting as an opportunity to accrue that very, very special tally.

All the very best to you, my friend.

M.
Taranaki, NZ
Pathogens spontaneously perforate the way
When ideological madmen infiltrate the day,
When fools bearing doctorates infect with excess
Where halfwits in spandex concur in distress.

For intimidation's message of ignorant plight
So paves this pathway, cadenced in fright,
Belligerence caste in a dark hue forlorn
Obliterates normality's wavering form.

A flight of justice, flung far away,
Impinging the right in this wrong on this day.
What price this quest for stark racial gain
When the conquest won, is a recidivist's pain.

M.
24th February 2021
Ive got pangs of nostalgia
For tenderness, then
When simplicity painted
An honesty, when
Words would build pictures,
Responses relate,
Giving meaning to warmth
In diminish-ment of hate.
Empathy's gift
For those tears on his face,
And the baring of souls
In our poetry's grace.

The candle burns for all of us,
Now, from time to time,
Contention does, occasionally though,
Cause the teeth to grind.
Sometimes a belly laugh erupts,
While others wonder why,
Some weep at words of falling rain
Against an evening sky?
Mostly, it's the warm
And familiar words from you
In uttering a smiled response
To help my tough day through.
A companionable chortle,
A joke, a helping hand
Or even just that tiny note....
To say you understand.

You hit the Nail on the Head, Joel.
M.
Thoughts evoked from a kind man's idle.
Musings stimulated by Joel's gentle, searching "Autopsy".
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