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NUMB, half asleep, and dazed with whirl of wheels,
And gasp of steam, and measured clank of chains,
I heard a blithe voice break a sudden pause,
Ringing familiarly through the lamp-lit night,
“Wife, here's your Venice!”
I was lifted down,
And gazed about in stupid wonderment,
Holding my little Katie by the hand—
My yellow-haired step-daughter. And again
Two strong arms led me to the water-brink,
And laid me on soft cushions in a boat,—
A queer boat, by a queerer boatman manned—
Swarthy-faced, ragged, with a scarlet cap—
Whose wild, weird note smote shrilly through the dark.
Oh yes, it was my Venice! Beautiful,
With melancholy, ghostly beauty—old,
And sorrowful, and weary—yet so fair,
So like a queen still, with her royal robes,
Full of harmonious colour, rent and worn!
I only saw her shadow in the stream,
By flickering lamplight,—only saw, as yet,
White, misty palace-portals here and there,
Pillars, and marble steps, and balconies,
Along the broad line of the Grand Canal;
And, in the smaller water-ways, a patch
Of wall, or dim bridge arching overhead.
But I could feel the rest. 'Twas Venice!—ay,
The veritable Venice of my dreams.

I saw the grey dawn shimmer down the stream,
And all the city rise, new bathed in light,
With rose-red blooms on her decaying walls,
And gold tints quivering up her domes and spires—
Sharp-drawn, with delicate pencillings, on a sky
Blue as forget-me-nots in June. I saw
The broad day staring in her palace-fronts,
Pointing to yawning gap and crumbling boss,
And colonnades, time-stained and broken, flecked
With soft, sad, dying colours—sculpture-wreathed,
And gloriously proportioned; saw the glow
Light up her bright, harmonious, fountain'd squares,
And spread out on her marble steps, and pass
Down silent courts and secret passages,
Gathering up motley treasures on its way;—

Groups of rich fruit from the Rialto mart,
Scarlet and brown and purple, with green leaves—
Fragments of exquisite carving, lichen-grown,
Found, 'mid pathetic squalor, in some niche
Where wild, half-naked urchins lived and played—
A bright robe, crowned with a pale, dark-eyed face—
A red-striped awning 'gainst an old grey wall—
A delicate opal gleam upon the tide.

I looked out from my window, and I saw
Venice, my Venice, naked in the sun—
Sad, faded, and unutterably forlorn!—
But still unutterably beautiful.

For days and days I wandered up and down—
Holding my breath in awe and ecstasy,—
Following my husband to familiar haunts,
Making acquaintance with his well-loved friends,
Whose faces I had only seen in dreams
And books and photographs and his careless talk.
For days and days—with sunny hours of rest
And musing chat, in that cool room of ours,
Paved with white marble, on the Grand Canal;
For days and days—with happy nights between,
Half-spent, while little Katie lay asleep
Out on the balcony, with the moon and stars.

O Venice, Venice!—with thy water-streets—
Thy gardens bathed in sunset, flushing red
Behind San Giorgio Maggiore's dome—
Thy glimmering lines of haughty palaces
Shadowing fair arch and column in the stream—
Thy most divine cathedral, and its square,
With vagabonds and loungers daily thronged,
Taking their ice, their coffee, and their ease—
Thy sunny campo's, with their clamorous din,
Their shrieking vendors of fresh fish and fruit—
Thy churches and thy pictures—thy sweet bits
Of colour—thy grand relics of the dead—
Thy gondoliers and water-bearers—girls
With dark, soft eyes, and creamy faces, crowned
With braided locks as bright and black as jet—
Wild ragamuffins, picturesque in rags,
And swarming beggars and old witch-like crones,
And brown-cloaked contadini, hot and tired,
Sleeping, face-downward, on the sunny steps—
Thy fairy islands floating in the sun—
Thy poppy-sprinkled, grave-strewn Lido shore—

Thy poetry and thy pathos—all so strange!—
Thou didst bring many a lump into my throat,
And many a passionate thrill into my heart,
And once a tangled dream into my head.

'Twixt afternoon and evening. I was tired;
The air was hot and golden—not a breath
Of wind until the sunset—hot and still.
Our floor was water-sprinkled; our thick walls
And open doors and windows, shadowed deep
With jalousies and awnings, made a cool
And grateful shadow for my little couch.
A subtle perfume stole about the room
From a small table, piled with purple grapes,
And water-melon slices, pink and wet,
And ripe, sweet figs, and golden apricots,
New-laid on green leaves from our garden—leaves
Wherewith an antique torso had been clothed.
My husband read his novel on the floor,
Propped up on cushions and an Indian shawl;
And little Katie slumbered at his feet,
Her yellow curls alight, and delicate tints
Of colour in the white folds of her frock.
I lay, and mused, in comfort and at ease,
Watching them both and playing with my thoughts;
And then I fell into a long, deep sleep,
And dreamed.
I saw a water-wilderness—
Islands entangled in a net of streams—
Cross-threads of rippling channels, woven through
Bare sands, and shallows glimmering blue and broad—
A line of white sea-breakers far away.
There came a smoke and crying from the land—
Ruin was there, and ashes, and the blood
Of conquered cities, trampled down to death.
But here, methought, amid these lonely gulfs,
There rose up towers and bulwarks, fair and strong,
Lapped in the silver sea-mists;—waxing aye
Fairer and stronger—till they seemed to mock
The broad-based kingdoms on the mainland shore.
I saw a great fleet sailing in the sun,
Sailing anear the sand-slip, whereon broke
The long white wave-crests of the outer sea,—
Pepin of Lombardy, with his warrior hosts—
Following the ****** steps of Attila!
I saw the smoke rise when he touched the towns
That lay, outposted, in his ravenous reach;

Then, in their island of deep waters,* saw
A gallant band defy him to his face,
And drive him out, with his fair vessels wrecked
And charred with flames, into the sea again.
“Ah, this is Venice!” I said proudly—“queen
Whose haughty spirit none shall subjugate.”

It was the night. The great stars hung, like globes
Of gold, in purple skies, and cast their light
In palpitating ripples down the flood
That washed and gurgled through the silent streets—
White-bordered now with marble palaces.
It was the night. I saw a grey-haired man,
Sitting alone in a dark convent-porch—
In beggar's garments, with a kingly face,
And eyes that watched for dawnlight anxiously—
A weary man, who could not rest nor sleep.
I heard him muttering prayers beneath his breath,
And once a malediction—while the air
Hummed with the soft, low psalm-chants from within.
And then, as grey gleams yellowed in the east,
I saw him bend his venerable head,
Creep to the door, and knock.
Again I saw
The long-drawn billows breaking on the land,
And galleys rocking in the summer noon.
The old man, richly retinued, and clad
In princely robes, stood there, and spread his arms,
And cried, to one low-kneeling at his feet,
“Take thou my blessing with thee, O my son!
And let this sword, wherewith I gird thee, smite
The impious tyrant-king, who hath defied,
Dethroned, and exiled him who is as Christ.
The Lord be good to thee, my son, my son,
For thy most righteous dealing!”
And again
'Twas that long slip of land betwixt the sea
And still lagoons of Venice—curling waves
Flinging light, foamy spray upon the sand.
The noon was past, and rose-red shadows fell
Across the waters. Lo! the galleys came
To anchorage again—and lo! the Duke
Yet once more bent his noble head to earth,
And laid a victory at the old man's feet,
Praying a blessing with exulting heart.
“This day, my well-belovèd, thou art blessed,
And Venice with thee, for St. Peter's sake.

And I will give thee, for thy bride and queen,
The sea which thou hast conquered. Take this ring,
As sign of her subjection, and thy right
To be her lord for ever.”
Once again
I saw that old man,—in the vestibule
Of St. Mark's fair cathedral,—circled round
With cardinals and priests, ambassadors
And the noblesse of Venice—richly robed
In papal vestments, with the triple crown
Gleaming upon his brows. There was a hush:—
I saw a glittering train come sweeping on,
From the blue water and across the square,
Thronged with an eager multitude,—the Duke,
And with him Barbarossa, humbled now,
And fain to pray for pardon. With bare heads,
They reached the church, and paused. The Emperor knelt,
Casting away his purple mantle—knelt,
And crept along the pavement, as to kiss
Those feet, which had been weary twenty years
With his own persecutions. And the Pope
Lifted his white haired, crowned, majestic head,
And trod upon his neck,—crying out to Christ,
“Upon the lion and adder shalt thou go—
The dragon shalt thou tread beneath thy feet!”
The vision changed. Sweet incense-clouds rose up
From the cathedral altar, mix'd with hymns
And solemn chantings, o'er ten thousand heads;
And ebbed and died away along the aisles.
I saw a train of nobles—knights of France—
Pass 'neath the glorious arches through the crowd,
And stand, with halo of soft, coloured light
On their fair brows—the while their leader's voice
Rang through the throbbing silence like a bell.
“Signiors, we come to Venice, by the will
Of the most high and puissant lords of France,
To pray you look with your compassionate eyes
Upon the Holy City of our Christ—
Wherein He lived, and suffered, and was lain
Asleep, to wake in glory, for our sakes—
By Paynim dogs dishonoured and defiled!
Signiors, we come to you, for you are strong.
The seas which lie betwixt that land and this
Obey you. O have pity! See, we kneel—
Our Masters bid us kneel—and bid us stay
Here at your feet until you grant our prayers!”
Wherewith the knights fell down upon their knees,

And lifted up their supplicating hands.
Lo! the ten thousand people rose as one,
And shouted with a shout that shook the domes
And gleaming roofs above them—echoing down,
Through marble pavements, to the shrine below,
Where lay the miraculous body of their Saint
(Shed he not heavenly radiance as he heard?—
Perfuming the damp air of his secret crypt),
And cried, with an exceeding mighty cry,
“We do consent! We will be pitiful!”
The thunder of their voices reached the sea,
And thrilled through all the netted water-veins
Of their rich city. Silence fell anon,
Slowly, with fluttering wings, upon the crowd;
And then a veil of darkness.
And again
The filtered sunlight streamed upon those walls,
Marbled and sculptured with divinest grace;
Again I saw a multitude of heads,
Soft-wreathed with cloudy incense, bent in prayer—
The heads of haughty barons, armed knights,
And pilgrims girded with their staff and scrip,
The warriors of the Holy Sepulchre.
The music died away along the roof;
The hush was broken—not by him of France—
By Enrico Dandolo, whose grey head
Venice had circled with the ducal crown.
The old man looked down, with his dim, wise eyes,
Stretching his hands abroad, and spake. “Seigneurs,
My children, see—your vessels lie in port
Freighted for battle. And you, standing here,
Wait but the first fair wind. The bravest hosts
Are with you, and the noblest enterprise
Conceived of man. Behold, I am grey-haired,
And old and feeble. Yet am I your lord.
And, if it be your pleasure, I will trust
My ducal seat in Venice to my son,
And be your guide and leader.”
When they heard,
They cried aloud, “In God's name, go with us!”
And the old man, with holy weeping, passed
Adown the tribune to the altar-steps;
And, kneeling, fixed the cross upon his cap.
A ray of sudden sunshine lit his face—
The grand, grey, furrowed face—and lit the cross,
Until it twinkled like a cross of fire.
“We shall be safe with him,” the people said,

Straining their wet, bright eyes; “and we shall reap
Harvests of glory from our battle-fields!”

Anon there rose a vapour from the sea—
A dim white mist, that thickened into fog.
The campanile and columns were blurred out,
Cathedral domes and spires, and colonnades
Of marble palaces on the Grand Canal.
Joy-bells rang sadly and softly—far away;
Banners of welcome waved like wind-blown clouds;
Glad shouts were muffled into mournful wails.
A Doge was come to be enthroned and crowned,—
Not in the great Bucentaur—not in pomp;
The water-ways had wandered in the mist,
And he had tracked them, slowly, painfully,
From San Clemente to Venice, in a frail
And humble gondola. A Doge was come;
But he, alas! had missed his landing-place,
And set his foot upon the blood-stained stones
Betwixt the blood-red columns. Ah, the sea—
The bride, the queen—she was the first to turn
Against her passionate, proud, ill-fated lord!

Slowly the sea-fog melted, and I saw
Long, limp dead bodies dangling in the sun.
Two granite pillars towered on either side,
And broad blue waters glittered at their feet.
“These are the traitors,” said the people; “they
Who, with our Lord the Duke, would overthrow
The government of Venice.”
And anon,
The doors about the palace were made fast.
A great crowd gathered round them, with hushed breath
And throbbing pulses. And I knew their lord,
The Duke Faliero, knelt upon his knees,
On the broad landing of the marble stairs
Where he had sworn the oath he could not keep—
Vexed with the tyrannous oligarchic rule
That held his haughty spirit netted in,
And cut so keenly that he writhed and chafed
Until he burst the meshes—could not keep!
I watched and waited, feeling sick at heart;
And then I saw a figure, robed in black—
One of their dark, ubiquitous, supreme
And fearful tribunal of Ten—come forth,
And hold a dripping sword-blade in the air.
“Justice has fallen on the traitor! See,
His blood has paid the forfeit of his crime!”

And all the people, hearing, murmured deep,
Cursing their dead lord, and the council, too,
Whose swift, sure, heavy hand had dealt his death.

Then came the night, all grey and still and sad.
I saw a few red torches flare and flame
Over a little gondola, where lay
The headless body of the traitor Duke,
Stripped of his ducal vestments. Floating down
The quiet waters, it passed out of sight,
Bearing him to unhonoured burial.
And then came mist and darkness.
Lo! I heard
The shrill clang of alarm-bells, and the wails
Of men and women in the wakened streets.
A thousand torches flickered up and down,
Lighting their ghastly faces and bare heads;
The while they crowded to the open doors
Of all the churches—to confess their sins,
To pray for absolution, and a last
Lord's Supper—their viaticum, whose death
Seemed near at hand—ay, nearer than the dawn.
“Chioggia is fall'n!” they cried, “and we are lost!”

Anon I saw them hurrying to and fro,
With eager eyes and hearts and blither feet—
Grave priests, with warlike weapons in their hands,
And delicate women, with their ornaments
Of gold and jewels for the public fund—
Mix'd with the bearded crowd, whose lives were given,
With all they had, to Venice in her need.
No more I heard the wailing of despair,—
But great Pisani's blithe word of command,
The dip of oars, and creak of beams and chains,
And ring of hammers in the arsenal.
“Venice shall ne'er be lost!” her people cried—
Whose names were worthy of the Golden Book—
“Venice shall ne'er be conquered!”
And anon
I saw a scene of triumph—saw the Doge,
In his Bucentaur, sailing to the land—
Chioggia behind him blackened in the smoke,
Venice before, all banners, bells, and shouts
Of passionate rejoicing! Ten long months
Had Genoa waged that war of life and death;
And now—behold the remnant of her host,
Shrunken and hollow-eyed and bound with chains—
Trailing their galleys in the conqueror's wake!

Once more the tremulous waters, flaked with light;
A covered vessel, with an armèd guard—
A yelling mob on fair San Giorgio's isle,
And ominous whisperings in the city squares.
Carrara's noble head bowed down at last,
Beaten by many storms,—his golden spurs
Caught in the meshes of a hidden snare!
“O Venice!” I cried, “where is thy great heart
And honourable soul?”
And yet once more
I saw her—the gay Sybaris of the world—
The rich voluptuous city—sunk in sloth.
I heard Napoleon's cannon at her gates,
And her degenerate nobles cry for fear.
I saw at last the great Republic fall—
Conquered by her own sickness, and with scarce
A noticeable wound—I saw her fall!
And she had stood above a thousand years!
O Carlo Zeno! O Pisani! Sure
Ye turned and groaned for pity in your graves.
I saw the flames devour her Golden Book
Beneath the rootless “Tree of Liberty;”
I saw the Lion's le
SUNDARAM SARMA Feb 2019
Can you envision a city built on a lagoon?
That's Venice, a name that always makes one swoon,
It has a reputation for canals rather than roads,
And a prime reason why one will never get bored

The famed gondola ride through the labyrinth of canals,
Is a must-have experience that is far from banal,
Gliding through serene waters with hardly a tilt,
While being serenaded by the cheerful gondolier's lilt

The epicenter of Venice is the popular St Mark's Square,
Teeming with tourists with a perennial effervescent flair,
Historic buildings and stately arcades form the periphery,
With an array of cafes and accompanying music for people to make merry

Witness the serpentine line of visitors entering St Mark's Basilica church,
Gazing at seemingly endless luminous gilded mosaics inside makes one almost lurch,
The Pala d'Oro altar of gold studded with hundreds of gems is a marvel to behold,
As are the mammoth innumerable columns that are so mind-boggling, if truth be told

The majestic Doge's Palace bears the stamp of masterpiece Gothic architecture,
Resting on a double arcade of marble columns lends solidity to the structure,
Spectacular halls and staircases adorn the interior, replete with exquisite paintings,
While ornate works of art complemented by more paintings are featured in the ceilings

The Bridge of Sighs is touted as one of the finest bridge architecture in the world,
The stylish Italian Renaissance connects the interrogation room to the prisoners' abode,
The sculptured sad or angry faces while crossing under the bridge can easily be seen,
Depicting sighs of prisoners awaiting their fate, as they mulled "what could have been"

The bustling Grand Canal is the central transport hub in picturesque Venice,
Gondolas, vaporettos and water taxis cruise up and down the canal without amiss,
Flanked by colorful buildings, iconic structures, buzzing markets and cobbled streets,
Time flies in hopping to various locations while savoring the glorious visual treat

The world famous Venetian glass has a history of its own,
Murano's glass museum visit facilitates all there is to be known,
For intricate shapes, it is a treat to watch the glass blower's skill,
Colorful designed vases and sculptures are effortlessly made at will

The lengthy arched Rialto Bridge is as old as the hills,
A crossover between San Polo and San Marco districts with hardly any frill,
It's breathtaking sunrise view receives considerable emcomium,
As a popular tourist spot, it needs no second opinion

As the bell-tower of the basilica, the Campanile is the tallest building in Venice,
The ring of each of the five bells is replete with history that one cannot miss,
The panoramic breathtaking view of Venice from the tower top,
Is one of the reasons why it is a must-experience visitors' stop

The mere mention of Venice always makes the lagoon city so exciting,
Little wonder that the annual Film Festival is a much-awaited outing,
The aura of glamor, glitz and entertainment never wanes any given year,
As folks continue to throng the city from far and near, with their near and dear
Meandering like its canals
Venetian streets sing underfoot.
Who wore away the stone cobbled streets?
Who walked down to the shore?
Who gazed out at the Adriatic?
Who's dreams were lost in Venice's stream of streets?

Licentious lovers loved in Venice's streets, kissed on her bridges,
Crossed under by gondola and over by foot.
Proposed at the piazza San Marco.
Kissed, while the Grand Canal wound her way down.
Down into the sea,
where the menace that is the world, Venice shuns.

Rialto, Doge, Basilica, St. Marks, pigeons!
All evoke that lagoon city of streets.
Originally refugees, incolae lacunae ("lagoon dwellers")
Venetians, gave not only a place for the dispossessed,
but a place for the world to see, feel and taste.
Art, war, politics, commerce, spice and silk.

Venice with her ribbon of streets, alleyways and bridges
saw the Renaissance, the crusades, and the Black Death.
Glassware, paintings, sculptures, religion, refugees all
synonymous with that floating city.
A city returning to the water she arose from.
Subsiding with grief as she drowns in elegant decay.
© JLB
13/06/2014
Nigel Morgan Jan 2014
Today has been a difficult day he thought, as there on his desk, finally, lay some evidence of his struggle with the music he was writing. Since early this morning he’d been backtracking, remembering the steps that had enabled him to write the entirely successful first movement. He was going over the traces, examining the clues that were there (somewhere) in his sketches and diary jottings. They always seem so disorganised these marks and words and graphics, but eventually a little clarity was revealed and he could hear and see the music for what it was. But what was it to become? He had a firm idea, but he didn’t know how to go about getting it onto the page. The second slow movement seemed as elusive today as ever it had been.

There was something intrinsically difficult about slow music, particularly slow music for strings. The instruments’ ability to sustain and make pitches and chords flow seamlessly into one another magnified every inconsistency of his part-writing technique and harmonic justification. Faster music, music that constantly moved and changed, was just so much easier. The errors disappeared before the ear could catch them.

Writing music that was slow in tempo, whose harmonic rhythm was measured and took its time, required a level of sustained thought that only silence and intense concentration made properly possible. His studio was far from silent (outside the traffic spat and roared) and today his concentration seemed at a particularly low ebb. He was modelling this music on a Vivaldi Concerto, No.6 from L’Estro Armonico. That collective title meant Harmonic Inspiration, and inspiring this collection of 12 concerti for strings certainly was. Bach reworked six of these concertos in a variety of ways.

He could imagine the affect of this music from that magical city of the sea, Venice, La Serenissima, appearing as a warm but fresh wind of harmony and invention across those early, usually handwritten scores. Bach’s predecessors, Schutz and Schein had travelled to Venice and studied under the Gabrielis and later the maestro himself, Claudio Monteverdi. But for Bach the limitations of his situation, without such patronage enjoyed by earlier generations, made such journeying impossible. At twenty he did travel on foot from Arnstadt to Lubeck, some 250 miles, to experience the ***** improvisations of Dietriche Buxtehude, and stayed some three months to copy Buxtehude’s scores, managing to avoid the temptation of his daughter who, it was said, ‘went with the post’ on the Kapelmeister’s retirement. Handel’s visit to Buxtehude lasted twenty-four hours. To go to Italy? No. For Bach it was not to be.

But for this present day composer he had been to Italy, and his piece was to be his memory of Venice in the dark, sea-damp days of November when the acqua alta pursued its inhabitants (and all those tourists) about the city calles. No matter if the weather had been bad, it had been an arresting experience, and he enjoyed recovering the differing qualities of it in unguarded moments, usually when walking, because in Venice one walked, because that was how the city revealed itself despite the advice of John Ruskin and later Jan Morris who reckoned you had to have your own boat to properly experience this almost floating city.

As he chipped away at this unforgiving rock of a second movement he suddenly recalled that today was the first day of Epiphany, and in Venice the peculiar festival of La Befana. A strange tale this, where according to the legend, the night before the Wise Men arrived at the manger they stopped at the shack of an old woman to ask directions. They invited her to come along but she replied that she was too busy. Then a shepherd asked her to join him but again she refused. Later that night, she saw a great light in the sky and decided to join the Wise Men and the shepherd bearing gifts that had belonged to her child who had died. She got lost and never found the manger. Now La Befana flies around on her broomstick each year on the 11th night, bringing gifts to children in hopes that she might find the Baby Jesus. Children hang their stockings on the evening of January 5 awaiting the visit of La Befana. Hmm, he thought, and today the gondoliers take part in a race dressed as old women, and with a broomstick stuck vertically as a mast from each boat. Ah, L’Epiphania.

Here in this English Cathedral city where our composer lived Epiphany was celebrated only by the presence of a crib of contemporary sculptured forms that for many years had never ceased to beguile him, had made him stop and wonder. And this morning on his way out from Morning Office he had stopped and knelt by the figures he had so often meditated upon, and noticed three gifts, a golden box, a glass dish of incense and a tiny carved cabinet of myrrh,  laid in front of the Christ Child.

Yes, he would think of his second movement as ‘L’Epiphania’. It would be full of quiet  and slow wonder, but like the tale of La Befana a searching piece with no conclusion except a seque into the final fast and spirited conclusion to the piece. His second movement would be a night piece, an interlude that spoke of the mystery of the Incarnation, of God becoming Man. That seemed rather ambitious, but he felt it was a worthy ambition nevertheless.
Traveled across the world,
traveled to see my baby girl.
My one and only love,
sent down from the heavens above.

Our love was perfect,
nothing could hurt it.
So we traveled the world,
traveled with my baby girl.

Do you remember our love?
Do you remember the morning sun?
Do you remember Venice,
do you remember our final kiss?

Spent our lives together,
for what felt like forever.
But forever wasn't enough,
when the going got tough.

You gave up on me,.
in Venice, Italy.
Spent our lives together,
a wasted forever.

Do you remember our love?
Do you remember the morning sun?
Do you remember Venice,
do you remember our final kiss?
Copyright Barry Pietrantonio
Amy Lowell  Nov 2010
1777
I

The Trumpet-Vine Arbour

The throats of the little red trumpet-flowers are wide open,
And the clangour of brass beats against the hot sunlight.
They bray and blare at the burning sky.
Red! Red! Coarse notes of red,
Trumpeted at the blue sky.
In long streaks of sound, molten metal,
The vine declares itself.
Clang! -- from its red and yellow trumpets.
Clang! -- from its long, nasal trumpets,
Splitting the sunlight into ribbons, tattered and shot with noise.

I sit in the cool arbour, in a green-and-gold twilight.
It is very still, for I cannot hear the trumpets,
I only know that they are red and open,
And that the sun above the arbour shakes with heat.
My quill is newly mended,
And makes fine-drawn lines with its point.
Down the long, white paper it makes little lines,
Just lines -- up -- down -- criss-cross.
My heart is strained out at the pin-point of my quill;
It is thin and writhing like the marks of the pen.
My hand marches to a squeaky tune,
It marches down the paper to a squealing of fifes.
My pen and the trumpet-flowers,
And Washington's armies away over the smoke-tree to the Southwest.
'Yankee Doodle,' my Darling! It is you against the British,
Marching in your ragged shoes to batter down King George.
What have you got in your hat? Not a feather, I wager.
Just a hay-straw, for it is the harvest you are fighting for.
Hay in your hat, and the whites of their eyes for a target!
Like Bunker Hill, two years ago, when I watched all day from the house-top
Through Father's spy-glass.
The red city, and the blue, bright water,
And puffs of smoke which you made.
Twenty miles away,
Round by Cambridge, or over the Neck,
But the smoke was white -- white!
To-day the trumpet-flowers are red -- red --
And I cannot see you fighting,
But old Mr. Dimond has fled to Canada,
And Myra sings 'Yankee Doodle' at her milking.
The red throats of the trumpets bray and clang in the sunshine,
And the smoke-tree puffs dun blossoms into the blue air.


II


The City of Falling Leaves

Leaves fall,
Brown leaves,
Yellow leaves streaked with brown.
They fall,
Flutter,
Fall again.
The brown leaves,
And the streaked yellow leaves,
Loosen on their branches
And drift slowly downwards.
One,
One, two, three,
One, two, five.
All Venice is a falling of Autumn leaves --
Brown,
And yellow streaked with brown.

'That sonnet, Abate,
Beautiful,
I am quite exhausted by it.
Your phrases turn about my heart
And stifle me to swooning.
Open the window, I beg.
Lord! What a strumming of fiddles and mandolins!
'Tis really a shame to stop indoors.
Call my maid, or I will make you lace me yourself.
Fie, how hot it is, not a breath of air!
See how straight the leaves are falling.
Marianna, I will have the yellow satin caught up with silver fringe,
It peeps out delightfully from under a mantle.
Am I well painted to-day, 'caro Abate mio'?
You will be proud of me at the 'Ridotto', hey?
Proud of being 'Cavalier Servente' to such a lady?'
'Can you doubt it, 'Bellissima Contessa'?
A pinch more rouge on the right cheek,
And Venus herself shines less . . .'
'You bore me, Abate,
I vow I must change you!
A letter, Achmet?
Run and look out of the window, Abate.
I will read my letter in peace.'
The little black slave with the yellow satin turban
Gazes at his mistress with strained eyes.
His yellow turban and black skin
Are gorgeous -- barbaric.
The yellow satin dress with its silver flashings
Lies on a chair
Beside a black mantle and a black mask.
Yellow and black,
Gorgeous -- barbaric.
The lady reads her letter,
And the leaves drift slowly
Past the long windows.
'How silly you look, my dear Abate,
With that great brown leaf in your wig.
Pluck it off, I beg you,
Or I shall die of laughing.'

A yellow wall
Aflare in the sunlight,
Chequered with shadows,
Shadows of vine leaves,
Shadows of masks.
Masks coming, printing themselves for an instant,
Then passing on,
More masks always replacing them.
Masks with tricorns and rapiers sticking out behind
Pursuing masks with plumes and high heels,
The sunlight shining under their insteps.
One,
One, two,
One, two, three,
There is a thronging of shadows on the hot wall,
Filigreed at the top with moving leaves.
Yellow sunlight and black shadows,
Yellow and black,
Gorgeous -- barbaric.
Two masks stand together,
And the shadow of a leaf falls through them,
Marking the wall where they are not.
From hat-tip to shoulder-tip,
From elbow to sword-hilt,
The leaf falls.
The shadows mingle,
Blur together,
Slide along the wall and disappear.
Gold of mosaics and candles,
And night blackness lurking in the ceiling beams.
Saint Mark's glitters with flames and reflections.
A cloak brushes aside,
And the yellow of satin
Licks out over the coloured inlays of the pavement.
Under the gold crucifixes
There is a meeting of hands
Reaching from black mantles.
Sighing embraces, bold investigations,
Hide in confessionals,
Sheltered by the shuffling of feet.
Gorgeous -- barbaric
In its mail of jewels and gold,
Saint Mark's looks down at the swarm of black masks;
And outside in the palace gardens brown leaves fall,
Flutter,
Fall.
Brown,
And yellow streaked with brown.

Blue-black, the sky over Venice,
With a pricking of yellow stars.
There is no moon,
And the waves push darkly against the prow
Of the gondola,
Coming from Malamocco
And streaming toward Venice.
It is black under the gondola hood,
But the yellow of a satin dress
Glares out like the eye of a watching tiger.
Yellow compassed about with darkness,
Yellow and black,
Gorgeous -- barbaric.
The boatman sings,
It is Tasso that he sings;
The lovers seek each other beneath their mantles,
And the gondola drifts over the lagoon, aslant to the coming dawn.
But at Malamocco in front,
In Venice behind,
Fall the leaves,
Brown,
And yellow streaked with brown.
They fall,
Flutter,
Fall.
saxophone  Apr 2014
Venice
saxophone Apr 2014
l'm like Venice,
every night ,
full of cheerful lanterns that boatmen carry.
l'm like Venice.
you're like the water that every midnight,
when all  the boatmen are asleep,
is awake and talks to me.
Mateuš Conrad Jan 2020
as any tactician, of any sort, there must be
an introduction into what becomes and expansion
that lasts the entire length of the night,
a liter of whiskey requires a decent amount
of hours to be drank in,
              ensuring that any moth that flies into my
"ivory tower" can loiter for the night,
imploring it: you better not be pregnant
with your moth larvae, otherwise...
     i will have to catch you with my hand,
and release you back into the night...

                        so... an atypical drinking session
begins with a few side orders or
sharpshooters (mix of 3:1 whiskey to ginger
ale)...
      and a few readings of, say,
             heidegger...
                       i already mentioned:
           dasein is more than an event,
          to me it's the equivalent of a crucifix...
it's a word associated to an object,
        rather than a recurring subject...
                  after all...
                          to objectify,
to work wonders in the objective world,
one still cannot escapes being a subject...
   esp. if one becomes a subject of one's own
subject-ive              experience...
     it must be such a boring, lame,
***** almost realism of object-object
          interaction...
                        to­ have:
       but to be unable to appreciate...
                i own about two dozens of vinyls...
but i don't really, really own them...
yes, i "own" them in the sense:
         but they might also be stolen...
        but i appreciate them more than i own
them...
              even if i "own" them,
and one day, do not...
        i owned something more than the object-reality
of the object per se,
       i appreciated them...
the ritual of the needle and the initial
scratching before the music would begin...
plus, not even a CD and esp. not
an MP3 file can give you the sort of ground
gravitational pull toward something
so physically exposing as...
   a... water-mill effect...

i digress...
              of all the three pillars of the mind:
thinking,
          memory and imagination?
i appreciate memory the most...
          you really know you have lived
a reasonably good life
   if your memory faculty is overtly present...
when you remember so much
of your, however mediocre / unspectacular
life...
           thinking can become scrambled,
you have to sometimes associate yourself
to writing when thinking is concerned...
no wonder so many philosophers after
socrates didn't have the patience to
resort to dialectics,
     to talk...
                     at least writing gives one
the capacity to organize, or rather...
devise plans for the labyrinth...

      imagination? plagued by images...
  i do not appreciate conjuring images in my mind,
thinking up dragons and demons...
imagination clouds the mind,
and the ability to concentrate on the skeleton
of man:
                    ⠇⠑⠞⠞⠑⠗⠎
plus, imagination promises and does conjure,
sketches of what an actual reality could
somehow provide...
    i'm not here, bothered about the nature
of "reality", i'll leave that whimsical notion
to english speaking physicists and neurologists...
but imagination clouds the pristine vision
of looking into the abyss,
   and by that, i also imply: looking through
the abyss back onto this world...

and should you think there's anything
profound about that statement?
there isn't...
         but memory...
     to be able to reclaim memory...
    to not seek relief / exodus / escape by
means of the imagination?
     i, frankly, would rather reclaim
the faculty of memory, above all else...
before it was stolen by the indocrination rubircs
of pedagogy...
before schooling set in...
     before, my years from the age of 8
through to the age of 21,
   the faculty of memory was made circumstanced
to "entertain" the bogus threats from
the education system...
             calculus: hardly used in everyday life...
you name it...
           what was the point of discussing
the ethics of abortion to children aged 15?
to scare them, if anything...
  euthanasia discussed aged 15? really?
the moral judgement regarding
   th "right" from the "wrong" was already
settled in the catholic school dogma...
maybe that's why i didn't want the seal
of being confirmed...
   what confirmation name would i have
chosen?
  at first i thought i would have chosen
Michael, as i made my not-to-be-"hope"
of a church wedding...
                 i would have settled on Lothar...
which would fit nicely with my already
second name, Conrad...
maybe even Otto... and dropped the hebrew
name Matthew...
          sure... reading heidegger...
like all philosophy: there's the reading
of a reflective prose, with the immediacy
of a reflexive poetics...
like the ancients: not confined to high school
curriculum of standard poetics:
rhyme and the etc. of techniques...
narrative: pure and simple...
    
              like when heidegger writes about
war (polemic / πoλεμoς)...
                 truth about either war,
or, peace (dialectic) is to chose between
what deserves our attention:
   either being (per se) - or beings...
                 and being (per se) isn't even relegated
to a subjugation to the self...
  a self-improvement, a self-help guru
mentality...
                   it's what the stoic doctor ordered...
there seems to be no fluidity with
an overt-association to a self,
                     self-worth is not exactly
akin to: the worth of being, is it?

        again: coming back to celebrating the faculty
of memory, above thought,
and certainly above imagination...
after all, i remember a period in my life
where i would have celebrated thinking per se
to be above memory and imagination,
when i attained some sort of synch.
   of a lived life of experiences,
that coincided with an equally fruitful
experience of thought that coincided with
the lived life...
            but not since a fateful event...
where memory became elevated above thinking...

so, memory? i have this one particular memory,
i was visiting Venice,
stayed in a hostel with about 15 women,
which, at times felt more intimidating
than sitting in a brothel with 9 bulgarian
prostitutes who i asked: one of you choose me,
one replied that i was not supposed to ask
them to choose, that they indeed were to be chosen,
so i said to her 'you talk a lot, you'll do!'
argentinian, australian girls, a swedish woman,
and two h'american girls...
leigh... and i can't remember the other girl's
name... visiting europe like any
h'american pair might do,
revising the ***** dancing stereotype of
finding "lost heritage"...
all over italy...

              the hostel was run by a h'american
girl and a h'americana boy...
first night? 15 women,
and you're the only man...
and one of them drops a bombshell:
well, as someone as handsome as you...
we took a group trip, via a ferry
to the Venice beach...
  we drank absinthe shots...
   don't ask me how,
but drunks have this GPS system built
into them when drunk... like bees...
i stumbled back to the hostel, alone,
on the ferry, and had a decent night of nod...
me, first time in Venice...
just like me stumbling back to
the hostel in Athens walking from
a strip-club... after having my fill
of smothering two strippers' bosoms...
having ****** my trousers prior,
tantalized by the fact that i was escorted
by a gorilla of a bouncer to the nearest
cash machine... since i ran out of money...
and then sneaking out of the hotel
that had a cash machine...
  first time in Athens... 5 ******* miles...
i made it back to the hostel...

i don't get it... drunks and in-built GPS...
navigated Venice, navigated Athens...
bee in me...

second day in Venice?
         of course... an argument between
the girls... leigh, the jewish girl wanted
to sight-see...
   a bunch of girls ganged up on her...
even her friend...
            so i said...
             well... **** me... if Solomon decided
to settle for the queen of sheba...
between me herding this quasi-tourist harem
of a bunch of australian girls...
   the argentinian etc.,
and this one h'american jewish girl leigh?
so i said: i'll do with you.

                      the numbers looked at me
like frankenstein jr.,
                        oh we had a hell of a time...
a few museums, getting lost in the Venetian
labyrinths, talked and talked...
explored the many flavours of gelato...
i think, i think i had the famous pistachio...
she had the capuccino in st. mark's sq.,
   and then she wanted to show me
the famous Venetian synagogue...
   so sure, we went there,
      but when we got there, it was closing...
boy, she was ******* that she couldn't
allow me to see it...
   instead... we saw the last tourist party
leave...
   and we huddled with some orthodox
students...
           one had a miniature shofar on him,
i told him to blow it, he blew it...
then i sat in a jewish cafe,
finding about the existence of the 613...
mitzvot...
             i wrote some of them down...
and then the weirdest ******* thing happened...
leigh started freaking out...
she was in such a hurry...
        she said she needed to get back,
she needed to get back...
          hell... she even paid of a Venetian taxi,
and Venetian taxis are not cheap,
motorboats on these rat canal aren't cheap...
i wanted to pay half the share...
she didn't want my money...
   next thing i know... she was booking
a flight out of Italy and on her way home...
she and her friend had still planned
another month touring Italy...
  phoom! off she went,
   then the quasi-tourist-harem of girls
came back from their day out...
leigh's friend inquired:
- where's leigh?
- oh, she decided to go home.
                   the next two days were weird...
it's not like i even pulled a ted bundy fast one...
but i remember the h'american girl
running the hostel...
  i ate the most amazing burgers which
she prepared... as if...
i staged some sort of neo-**** scare tactic
on poor leigh...
                rarely does a girl,
who planned this whole summer trip
with her friend, from h'america, all the way
to Europe... decide, on a whim...
to bail...

             Venice... oddly enough i was
not mesmerized...
           Stochholm didn't impress me either...
Amsterdam was just a cafe segment
and the chance to escape police-state
paranoia of England when i still smoked
marijuana... oh... and that one Dutch girl
who turned her head as she rode past me...
Cracow was a... eh... third time i went there?
just a transit point... London is too familiar...
Warsaw: again, transit hub...
Athens: squalor...
only two cities on this earth gave me
                 inspiration: Paris and Edinburgh...
mind you, Macedonia, amazing coach trip...
Belgrade looked stunning, imposing even,
during winter, seemingly a city on a hill...
on the flat-plains of Serbia...
but you need the snow,
   and ******* into it... and shaking from the cold,
because you're under-attired for the trip...

Katowice: but only at night.

   - and that is why i posit memory to
be superior to thinking these days,
  esp. imagination as a mental faculty...
memory has become a cinema to me...
        no wonder i'm bored with movies
these days...
         memory has become a form
of cinema for me...
            sure... it's not much...
but you can work around the "not much"
by fusing all the minor,
"insignificat" details of "skimming"
the narrative...
                       and thank god:
               i'm only given a cameo in all of it...
i'm not an over-bloated stage
actor with a protagonist role...
      in my cinema...
        i'm always the cameo!
                it's so liberating to have lived
a life that doesn't leave one feeling
ashamed...
                         it's hardly petty heroism...
but sure as ****...
     it's worth rememebering things
you can never be ashamed of.
russia
the mother of the love was cindy. she lives as wari and has no longer power. her beauty is renowned and she should rule.

argentina was the land of dd but mexico was goal and it was dana's land. dana is alive but needs to take control.

germany was grand and elsa was their king. elizabeth will rule. william was leam and harry was star. charles was ruu.

venice

the leader of the wall must take the city down dunstable will rule but row must take command (paul p) just lift the iron up and drink the holy well. paul (row my) must lead the way and let the city fall like jerico to row.

sibelius was chief his love could control hell. his land was mexico. he will return in 100 years. for now his son razor must reign. razor reigns already he was always strong with his power.

anthony (anthony p) is still rome. druididous stole from anthony. italy will love his power. his father still lives. he was known as tora. he will always save his people every time. (anthony and cleopatra).

simon (simon d) was the bell of the dance. his land was the guard of the law, his saviour was the christ.

palastine was oscar's (livin christ) land. he loved the people first and then the chosen leader. china stole his heart but his mother's magic eye was always the greener for the dome of the bar which was his mother's land.

syria was kim's the turks obeyed her law and her partner simon rice was the lord of undeceived. (kim's favourite sword - immaculate) kim would only ever give land to someone who beat her in a sword fight.

pakistan was morrow. morrow still lives. i will give him pakistan tomorrow.

laura (y) was time of space. her land was always persia. she always controlled the south and gail (r) did not deceive.

gail was the haunted skull. her wind would launch the sail. her seas were ever brave and her love was always true. persia (north)
was her heart. never steal her heart.

spain was not my son he was never in my life but portugal was spain and gavin (p) was their king.

the catharsis will run and run. i will never be deceived the gate is always closed for love is in our hearts.

england

gina (p) was our queen her lands would always flow. china stole her heart but england was her throne. ( i would like gina to come back to china to bend for the corn) gina's mother was druella in the ancient times.

david (b) was the king, he was the lionheart. he was our favourite king and no man could deceive.

scotland

gavin (p) was the james and diamond was his jewel. diamond is his wife and he must now command for nothing could corrupt.

stuart scotten was a scotish noble.

michael never ruled but no man thought he should his love was always wine and wine should not be loved. (as usual we will give him the principality of lowe as a gift so he does not destroy everyone).

serbia was the good, the love that jesus saw. give my son his thone. the love will be believed. in ancient histories serbia was known as dela. (see note lower serbia is now held by lassa and tal as guardians of the land below mount denar.) serbia and palastine must live in peace now the jew is gone who wanted to hurt palastine so much her people were forced south.

ok important note. we believe serbia was originally dunne but he always wanted land so he was not allowed back to earth. his lands were south of mount denar. oscar/ the christ/ the livin held after dunne left the earth but it was eventually agreed serbia below mount denar would be loved by tal and lassa as guardians of the land.

iatilahhomanne is the blue sky is yugoslavia. his wife is doran. she was his love. his old name was swee. yugoslavia is west of tee and north of do or die generally it is where teem is now. (old dree) their language was hebrew their god was jesus. the jews wanted christ to be their god not their christ. it is easy to find yugoslavia of the old world it is next to dree (ethiopia) and west of door. we believe they were also palastinian descent in the old world.  

pakistan was blue, she gave it to her heart and lassa always rules. lassa is alive give him his power back. no man then will grieve for joshua is back.

australia is madam it must return her power she knows the paths of peace and lives as mary rose.

newzealand is (d) (not good) madam must take control or ruby (a place) will aspire.

america is (d) she seethes to take the land. her hatred scalds and scalds it was berire's land. berire was the chief his land was mule and strike the karaoke's scream i will protect his thone.

orinoco should control his mind is always lead he knows no dark of heart and all his love is treve.

treve is always beth but she was ian's soul. please leave me ian's heart and yours should be atol.

atol would not be right. orinoco always marries beth (yet again). gail will not marry jet.

jason (rye) was no fool his lands were israel's heart. he loved the soul of rule but simon (d) could command.

kirby was the goo, india his throne. he was the amicable man his love was always christ the taj mahal he built and that was his home.

ian

i only want to love one girl, her name is beth. her love is like a bird that listens to the sky and then listens to all my love for her.

denmark

denmark was lasa at the dawn of time demeter is the rule and she's the queen of time. demeter now is young she is the queen of time her land is do or die and masa must command.

esotonia

was the house built by the sea it was eric's house and he was the son of the man he was the love of the life and he lives these days as stan.

france was warren hall but i must now be true. please give my catherine (m) land for aragon must rule. she was also in the ancient history joan of arc.

venice
paul (p) row my (principality palace in tlau.) dunstable took paul's money.

laura y (south china) it was the bys that took laura's money.

mowh has saved the word in china but as usual she tried to take power and had to be destroyed..

in venice beth was cocyo (the giver of bliss)  ( row cocco)

stav in south china is oscar's principality. stav is where oscar (the livin) is always happy. tao (ian and my son) loves to live in lowe.

the emperor of berling (north west south china) should have been. martin j. his brother originally drim dra dro was originally the prince of lowe but when i gave martin his territory in berling nick j became the prince of toi with the principality of toi. this was true in ancient times. martin was known as jo.  

orinoco was the emperor of china. the world was the waiting because the love would always be good.  

skybird drew was ray son. drew were the rightful thone of japan. the drew meant the solace of the earth.

gina in venice was tray.

ian's mother was fred.

eusebius was the poet of the heart.

eri (y) sometimes marries the man of the water.

michael is the guardian of the keep. i will always love my true.

helen (v) was the lover of the vine. she was chinese but had no throne.

claire was jezibel.

david was dow and fun

dunstable was char the feather of the water. he stole row fun.

in venice
eri was elea
laura was dezibel
gavin was cla

i have accepted as a gift a principality province in tithale.

kim of indonisia was the man the people loved. kim of the creator. we used to call kim the good man of our lives and the gentle spirit. everything of his goodness is returned.

our love was the strength of the world.

solace was drew. drew was the noblest family of all.

laura (y) was the mwang the rulers of the town and they were always princes.

in 1288 beth said goodness is more powerful than evil.

watling, turner and maccarthy were forced.

i am the family of fwoah.

lauren fwoah meant lauren the beautiful.

it was the evil family foo who made everybody born (or moved) to england. i demand all their money returned.

trump was the man of the star. he wanted the world to be quiet but loved. his name was choo. his current wife is belle and she was always his queen. his throne is peru.

boris was the baron of the star. your wife is livia and your land was mexico and your name was boro. your son was stevio the prayer of the mind and bringer of peace.

blair was catcho, the man who spent the fun. his original land was japan and he was noble but not the throne. the throne is now skybird drew.

it was the swinster family who hurt diana.

the current emperor of china is loco. he will give the territories to beth. his wife was the queen of the north.

*** (orinoco) was the conqueror of time. his destiny was power. he always loved beth and his province was the south.

japan is dalta at the moment it should have been drew. he stole for power as the armies wouldn't work. he wanted peru but i will not give peru for his destiny is fire!

peru should be malta but malta should be fire the love was the love of the love was always peru and peru should be ruled by scotland.

india was palm of par he was death of silence he was a resiliant man and today he lives as par.

atlantis was my sky i'll always love her heart. her chimney burnt to flame when carthage stole my love. phonecia was the blue and blue as of the wave (m) does wish but it is oscar's soul.

ian wynn was wales his love was orinoco. his daughter still lives as simone.

anthony (rome) was cabra in italy and dree in china which meant love me love. he was also lieu which meant the loved. (anthony and cleopatra)

lean built pisa tower. he was best at food.

row meant delight the sky.

the agha khan was dal which meant the love. he believes his true throne tunisia. i believe this is correct. also iran and iraq.

tin is throne of india.

del was the true throne of sweden. he is in charge.

norway was lion's land. it belongs to strong. who lives as guy.

the shah of iran was simon rice's father. he was the true throne. he was known as tal, which meant the good leader. iraq was also his which was the flower of land, denmark was also tal's land because yassa pretended lassa, this meant the throne was wrong but tal is lawful throne and lassa agrees.

godolphin was the arabian throne.

gina's money was taken by tong and fau who was the imposter winner of gold. they are both dead.

beth's love was the strength of the world.

drua took beth's seal in the china parliament. he stole my money. i was the word of china. i will return and take my rightful seat. my friend the shah of iran has already bought me the principality of siam and principality stav for my livin/oscar/christ ( oscar was born 25/12/97 this is the truth) as a wedding present. my mother gail has bought blue principality province. lowe i have agreed purchase when fun returned for my tao and my michaels.

gina was croan in china.

laura (y) married fleep.

dree took beth's money by pretending royal blood.

dominic (b) was poland of the ancient worlds his charm was nina and she was the curl. nina was so beautiful no man could ever resist, deceit could not destroy them there would always be a whirl!
Rachel Talley Mar 2012
Strolling along in Venice
With a shopping cart as home
Traveling through the city’s streets
Not homeless alone.

“This is it, Jerry!”
Then a shot rang loud
Our shock was spoken
Then we looked around

Our shopping cart was stolen
Our little turned to none
With little arguing or discussion
The chase had now begun

Running through the streets of Venice
Without a shopping cart or home
Frenzy in the city’s streets
Shopping cart-less alone.
Written in 7th grade and recently rediscovered.

Copyright © Rachel Talley
Mateuš Conrad  Nov 2016
Macbeth
Mateuš Conrad Nov 2016
before i pull this one out of my *** (again - listen, these words are not coming from either head or heart, it's best to pull them from the bowels, a gut-wrenching-feeling is more potent than that "something" that "something" delusional pulled from a clenched heart... as far as i know, the brain is incapable of emotions, it doesn't understand them, and since it doesn't understand them: it ridicules them)... which brings me to point:

(a) perhaps the idea of a soul is out-dated... why wouldn't it be, 21g worth of breath does not equal a soul... hence the autopsy of man, each detail studied seperately, the cardiologist knows the heart, the neurologist the brain etc., but some items work in a solipsistic mode... the heart is robotic, automaton pump queen (and not the kind of pump you'd get from Shveeden) - thump thump thump! come to think of it, most of our bodies are robotic, automated... lucky for me: i don't have to think about the heart doing what it does, it just per se does it... i'm not even sure i'm gifted with the a.i. brain functions... but there's an underlying principle that governs all of these items... some call it the self... i prefer: the Σ ultimatum... some would call it soul... but there has to be something akin to the Σ ultimatum that allows me to become detached from this body, while at the same time be bound to it: high blood pressure, heart attack on the horizon... take the high blood pressure pills... ****... what was (b)? oh... yes...

(b) i'm sorry, virginity doesn't cut it for me, lucky me that it was isabella of grenoble that allowed me to move aside from: god, prior to losing my virginity.... roxette: do you feel excited, you're still the one (shanaia twain), fade to black - metallica... i was such a romantic before i lost this dreaded curse... i was a romantic... 19th century style romanticism... but you really can see past this sort of romanticism unless you haven't ******... these days the right complains about cultural marxism: plenty of things to complain about... it makes as much sense as a pickle in a dollop of custard... or cooking with pale indian ale to make a stew: bad idea... wine, brandy, cider? fine... beer? terrible idea to cook with... but unless you haven't lost your virginity, you can't see what cultural marxism chose as its opponent: cultural darwinism... you know how little you hear about darwinism outside of the english speaking world? zero to none, yes, it's an accepted fact, but this fact does not permeate outside of the fact per se, the fact contains itself and the whole subsequent narrative because subconsciously stored... no other people than the people who found it ensure there are subplot proof statements of a reconfirmation of the validity... the whole social science bogus trap of rating people on looks... contradicting the meritocracy of that old Socratic saying: let me be as beautiful on the inside as on the outside... if you haven't ******: you're still the same old romantic i was at puberty... once you ****... well... cultural marxism dwarfs... yes yes it's there... so? but at the same time you can at least appreciate seeing the antithesis: cultural darwinism... the romantic needs to die the most carnal death via experience... all my ideals were shattered, this perfection of woman... i very much liked the idea / not even the ideal of a woman... but when the idea fizzled out and there was no ideal to begin with... i saw cultural darwinism for the very first time and... it was as ugly as cultural marxism so heavily criticized by the conservative right of the west... so... i decided to walk the middle ground, ignoring both sides (of the argument).

(c) i wouldn't have come up with a point see, unless my favorite square schematic didn't pop into my mind, Kantian, as ever: the best philosophy is the antithesis of English pragmatism and overt-politicisation, so it has to be German, ergo? i will not explain these terms, i figured: if i nail a decent example to fit each category, that's enough: since you can then visualize the concept via the example:

analytical a priori                           synthetic a priori
there's a need to throw                   learning
a ball at                                                to throw a ball
a target                                                 at a target once
                                                            ­  the need has been
                                                            ­  established...



synthetic a posteriori                    analytical a posteriori
there's a  need to                           perfecting to throw
      throw a ball at                               a ball at a target
a target, in order
to perfect this need...

                                            baseball..­. cricket...
at least: that's how i define knowledge of something
simple without having to use mathematics
that Kant used to explain... 2 + 2 = 4...
mathematics isn't exactly a man's best friend
at explaining philosophy...
you write philosophy that alligns itself
to mathematics... no wonder: moths in books...
yawns, unfinished works...
i found that sports work just as well
as mathematics... and you have the already
primitive objects to work with...
rather than pseudo-objects: i.e. numbers...
the abstracts of perception: i'm actually 6ft2...
not 6ft1... karolína plíšková is 6ft1...
       as noted when watching her today...

  i'll admit, i'm always a bit shaky when it comes
to this sqaure, whether it's over-simplified,
notably the top left corner: analytical a priori,
i'm always of a mindset that wants to associated
this definition with: analytical a- priori...
  i.e. borrowing from atheism:
    to analyse something without there
being a prior to example...
               analysis without a prior example...
i guess that's the mojo of science... the driving force...
back to sports... bow and arrow...
   tools: target...
       whether a bow and arrow and a deer
to begin with...
or a hand and ball and a wicket to end with...

there's a need to throw                  
a ball at a target...

            and cricket was the precursor of
baseball, but prior to cricket?
   there was archery...
              and prior to archery...
   there was forever a fundamental need,
e.g. to go from point X to point Z...
   see... as much as Kant wanted...
   numbers don't really solve the "problem"
of explaining something: algebra would be
better suited... x + y = z...
                    with numbers either hovering
above, or below (in the instance of chemistry's
subscript)...

talking of squares... sūdoku...
well, if at any time the french were to receive a hard-on
in terms of inventing something,
the english: rugby, cricket, football, tennis...
the french really did read some of the hebrew
qabbalah literature, as i am doing...
magic squares...
       the secular version of this puzzle
first appeared on july 6, 1895 (the modern version)...

it came to us from India and China...
again... why do western cultural darwinists
always tell our genesis from
the perspective of: "out of Africa"?
aren't there elephants in India?
            i will not believe i originated in Africa,
i'm not an "out of Africa" sorry state of
incompetence... i place my origins in
the sub-continent... at least that's where my
current language originates from...
the great migration across the Siberian tundra,
rather than some African savannah...
after all the Bangladeshi and the Sri Lankans
(the tear of India) resemble burnt cinnamon
in tone, some even as dark skinned as
east africans...
   if the germanic people want to stick to
the "out of Africa" narrative (notably the English):
let them have it... i place my origins in
India...

   never mind, now i'll write a name's dropping
history of how july 6th, 1895 happened...
the "magic" squares...

    from either India or China (chess from India)...
moschopulus of contantinople
  introduced them (the "magic" squares)
in the early 1400s... apparently ancient qabbalists
had knowledge of them
  (so... a trip well spent)...
                             rabbi joseph tzayah (1505 - 1573)
magnum opus: responsa...
             rabbi joseph castro: avkat rokhel...
tzayah in jerusalem wrote his major work
Evven HaShoham (the onyx stone) - 1538 -
   a year later the book: tzeror ha-chaim discussing
the Talmud: he never really bothered about
the Zohar...
               the hebrai word for "letters": otiot...
divided into two:
                         tav aleph (a line of aleph)
and tav yod (a line of yod)...
                   one is to never concentrate
upon the keter within the realm of the sefirot...
hence the matisyahu expression:
   king without a crown...
                         one example of a "magic" square
later dictated into a 9 x 9 newspaper puzzle?
      2     9     4
      7     5     3
      6     1     8     (up down across = 15...
my date of birth? 15th may 1986,
no coincidence, just stating an oblivion's
worth of a "point)... 15 x 3 = 45...
   and that's about as significant as any
                               insignificance can be...

album of choice?
    old horn tooth - from the ghost grey depths...

and without even associating the arabs
to the hebrai practice of gamatria,
i once inquired an old pakistani (who tried to convert me)
what: Alif, Lam, Meem
implied in the opening of the al-baqarah sutra
implied?
   he replied: god knew...
        so i thought, you don't know what
alif (letter) what lam (letter) and meem (also a letter)
means? you have to search for god
for the answers? good look making me into
a proselyte... mind you:
if the jews abhor proselytes,
while the muslims are so so oh so *******
welcoming... isn't that a tad bit suspicious?
how can a muslim convert me
when he can't explain to me what
alif lam and meem implies at the opening
of al-baqarah?!
            let's play some hijāʾī order game...
and the three letters...
       28 letters in total...
alif (28), lam (6), meem (5)...
    i'm not even going to go into the gamatria
mental gymnsastics related to any
"significance"...
   point was made upon the question being
asked... if a muslim tries to covert you...
and he can't explain to you
the significance of alif lam meem at the beginning
of al-baqarah... they're letters...
well... how is he going to explain to you
what's bothersome about those letters
to begin with? ALM... does that imply: zakat?!
to give alms? zakat being one of the pillars
of islam?
  **** me... i haven't even converted
and it would appear: i know more than the person
who tried to convert me!

.i. Yuri Gagarin and the yo-yo

if ever the potency of a "keyboard crusader"
existed, it's now -
   i can dangle a mouse above a bear-trap
and tell an elephant of a phobia concerning
mice any day of the week,
          when in fact i'm talking about
a mousetrap: nothing more.
     hence the exaggeration in the imagery
comparison:
        or it begins with a story told in the 20th
century:
             when women put down their mascara
brushes, men put down their swords:
never mind the voice in the wilderness:
       mind the voice in the crowd -
there's absolutely no reason to speculate
urbanity and tribal environments without
addressing, or regressing the crowd,
or as i like to call it: what Nietzsche said,
minus the Wake... but now inclusive of the wake
and the Bacchus cult of fun fun fun.
            the Wake in condor terms?
we congregate praying for something to die...
      i don't pretend to be whatever
that sachet of concrete-Cartesian labels entitles me
too:        for the most part
        people say 'i am' without a thought to
govern the rain shaman telling you what thought
is required to 'be', oh, a very old ontological
stipend: you need people to experience a collectivisation,
a herding, a "bound together" sort of mentality
before the critic arrives and says: well, that's not
what i'm really about.
                    a bit like the **** firs, mouth second
debacle...
                but what heart they had, our predecessors!
what heart!
             they'd wage war over a woman,
a Helen,
                  would you wage a war against
the feminist version of Helen these days?
would you pluck a Scottish thistle over an English rose?
      true: you might be a bishop
and of lesser rank... but would you wage a war
over the women of these days?
my **** is in a pickle jar anyway! we have become
a *** of a species unburdened by an obligation...
             finally! we can become eternal bachelors
sort of ******* that we're here, and hear less and less
of sayings about the "things that matter".
            you know what vile? really really vile?
oh i know my contemporaries when i bother to
hear them talk, oddly enough never bother when they
think, i'm quiet content with a Godot stage of
a park bench and an old man as my company,
      i know Douglas Murray,
               i know the wild-eyed Icke,
but a thing that concerns me is why: the safety room
parallel to the leftist thesis of offensive speech
was put in play when a discussion took off
concerning feminism, between milo yiannopoulus
and julie bindel - that's like saying:
ask a pederast to talk for a heterosexual man
with a woman safe-space...
                                no one wants to hear
the heterosexual side of the argument....
  you'll sooner see heterosexual intellects have their
marriages come undone then get paired with either
side of the argument...
     little richard is in the pickle jar anyway,
and he's not coming out...
                it's a bit like ****** for dummies....
       hence i have to succumb to violence without
the glory, tongue waggling blah blah
when i'd gladly take a weapon and shove it into
a shattered cranium bone: had i the ****** chance to
do so!
           no heterosexual is taken seriously:
and won't be:
    of a woman to be like a rosy cushion on which
i can lay my head after the darkly toils of
    roofing, or laying bricks, or excavating the sewers...
no! let the Chinese do that:
the basic argument of slavery, although imported
therefore ****** ******* fine.
                         cryogenic fathers,
      pickled *****:      where's the middle in all of this?
     a coconut just fell from the Boddhi tree:
money!           and those that defend it,
don't know squat about the tribalism of squatters!
but hey! they have the ****** stage!
         i have a bench when someone approaches me
and talk, doing the best thing possible:
               knitting opinions -
i don't want the truth of opinions: i want a sweater,
or a pair of socks! that's metaphor for something
different altogether.
  keyboard crusader? really? can i ask you for
directions to the high street, in every single town
across the country? i can't find one!
         no one hears a heterosexual argument
on the various topics: because there isn't one -
                     as of the end of the 20th century,
working classes in the west striving to ensure
there is something mundane to do during the day
and kick back with the family in the evening
are the "inferior" neanderthals: who
haven't jacked into discovering a 3D reality
of what's otherwise a 2D computer screen and
aren't hooked on #crack;
honestly, so much debating ought to be opera,
and so much opera ought to be debating -
    ah: that famous tingle of utopian paradoxes
never in duality, but always in dichotomy.
   keyboard crusader?
really? i thought people were always moaning
about how many emails they receive:
   and never a single postcard from, say,
someplace like Venice?
           it's still early days,
                   and already we're brewing enough
cliches to replace all known nouns in
    the surrogate mother that's the dictionary
of our completed version of a soul -
if ever to be experienced upon meeting the omni-vocabulary;
jigsaws, i know my idiosyncratic version
of events, he says photosynthesis within parameters
                            of photon deconstruction of hydrogen;
'cos' it's sub; d'uh! i say god i say this perfected
version of nearing telepathy - you say god i hope you
don't mean satan's clause - great anagram to frighten
children with: the Babushka surprise of a Pumpkin head
laughing it's way toward: how easy life would be
if we had all that time to think it through as being hard,
rather than that mortal fleetingness in both thought
and body.

ii. Macbeth

it really dawned on me, when i was watching the film
Macbeth (2015) -
            there was an eeriness to it, a near perfection
of Shakespeare on screen...
           honestly? i'd rather read Kant early on in life
while i have the vigour, and leave old age to Shakespeare...
but it truly was eerie all over the place.
      i do recall seeing Romeo + Juliet
          and reading the script, and imagining the fallacy
of word for word translation from theatre to cinema
of the script: the narrator a news channel anchor,
and everything said, word, for, word.
that film with DiCaprio as Romeo and Claire Danes
as Juliet - it just felt itchy, uncomfortable -
                            Shakespeare, word for word, on screen?!
     (surprise, then astonishment, not !? or astonishment,
   then the surprise, because: it didn't really work);
and it didn't! you can't adapt Shakespeare to the screen
and put everything in! i noticed it at that ******
generous scene in Macbeth concerning the battle
of Ellon... so i was like like... this isn't typescript...
(and thank **** it isn't) -
you can't depict Shakespeare word for word,
to be honest, Macbeth (2015) is the only worthy
translation of Macbeth (the text) into Macbeth (the movie);
all this scientific exactness in previous examples
like Romeo + Juliet, the Merchant of Venice
and a Midsummer's Night Dream don't work,
it's their precision making,
     a theatre cast can take it, but a cinema going crowd,
with all these cutting and copying and repasting
    succinct moments? it doesn't work!
maybe because there's no actual narrator in the staged
examples? narrator as a necessary character understudy:
surely Puck and the news anchor are there:
don't know about the Shylock scenario...
           but these screen adaptations didn't work for me,
too rigid, too formal... in the case of Macbeth?
finally! the long awaited piquant version of Shakespeare:
all that matters, and the rest is thrown into
poetic technique: imagery, metaphor,
                everything that's necessary can be given grammar
as image and not word!
       want an example? from the text...
the Royal Shakespeare
  from the text of Professor Delius
  and introduction by f. j. Furnivall, ll.d.
         vol. v (special edition)
Cassell & Company, Ltd.

        sure, it feels like a Roman Polanski moment
akin to the 9th Gate scenic affair of a bibliophile
fetishist, and it is:

     ... (the only enemy of enso poetry
is the bladder) ...

well the screen play first:

banquo: what are these?
macbeth: live you? or are you aught
                          that man may question?
       speak if you can - what are you?
1st witch: macbeth! hail to thee
                    thane of Glamis!
2nd witch: macbeth... hail to thee,
       thane of Cawdor!
3rd witch: all hail Macbeth! that shalt be king in-after.

but such disparity, such **** as if once
of Lucretia, then of the authority,
for i have before me the original composition:
which is not worth cinema -
nonetheless, a **** takes place:
an assortment for the abdication of a king:
or as ever suggested: the wrong footed path:
never was tossing a coin in a gamble
that of tossing a crown into the air
for a court jester to appear less amusing
and more scolding.

act i, scene iii: post the battle of ellon...
  if ever the refusal to give up Greek myth,
then Macbeth's witches
      and Perseus' Graeae -
                            or naturalise a myth:
like you might not naturalise a strengthened
economy.... canonise the nation
with Elgin Marbles - Elgin: less than
what's said to be the exfoliation of the Aegean -
a municipality somewhere in Scotland:
west of Aberdeen, on the Northern Sea's
battering of the coast...
but word for word? or how to write Shakespeare
into cinema?
                 herr zensor must come into play -
you have to bypass imagery in poetic tongue
and relay it with actual images, a direly needed
necessity:

just after the three witches arrive,
enter Macbeth and Bonquo...

   Macb. so foul and fair a day i have not seen.
Ban. how far is't call'd to Fores? - what are these,
     so wither'd and so wild in their attire,
that look not like th' inhabitants o' the earth,
   and yet are on 't?
             live you? or are you aught that man may
question?

                  (how word for word, but the words
waggle from a different tongue, namely that of
Macbeth, and not that of Banquo, hence
italicised).
                   continuing:
       you seem to understand me,
by each at once her choppy finger laying upon her
skinny lips: - you should be women, and yet your
beards forbid me to interpret that you are so.
Macb. speak, if you can - what are you?
         the witches. all hail, Macbeth!
     hail to thee, thane of Glamis!
         all hail, Macbeth! hail to thee, thane
of Cawdor!
         all hail, Macbeth! that shalt be king hereafter.
            
so does he really belong on the psychoanalytic
couch? is he really that necessarily wonton of talk?
  Cawdor v. Gondor - it's an ongoing narrative.
but is he in need of a couch?
                 what sort of talk is talk when
in fact the only talk that's need to be said is the talk
of man's sexualised naturalisation for strife,
and here: as if knocking on a door:
you want to simply hear the onomatopoeia of
the Kabbalah in a woman gasping for breath
while puny Jewish boys under strict rabbinical
studies study?

                mama, take this badge from  me,
i can't use it, anymore,
            it's getting dark, too dark to see,
feels like i'm knockin' on heaven's door -
      my big mouth and man as a piston
                                               Ferrari acrobat


(even the soundtrack is a shrill, a strangulation
variant of higher pitch of the bagpipes -
not that braveheart ****** of whisking out
a song like for the love of a princess addition to:
  and can i have a madonna to boot too?
it's piercing, a whale sonar above refrigerator
white noise hum for the new age Buddha -
and that's because all the poetry has been excavated
  to suit cinema: not theatre).

and this is the first adaptation of Shakespeare i actually
could stomach...
     the genius was in how Macbeth spoke the lines
of Bonqua - so the character didn't start smacking
the narrative ****** in terms of solipsism:
even Shakespeare can be attacked on this front...
        if in the movie Banqua said all that was in
the typescript: the film wouldn't have worked...
i don't know what the big deal is with Lady Macbeth:
i thought that in the olden days
Macbeth suggested to King Duncan that:
can i leave the warring if you **** my wife?
i can go on the contract that you **** my wife
and i stop serving you?
      first impressions: strange English.
well, i'm sure she's important as it might be said:
within the programme of Orthodoxy,
            but never catholic (metadoxy) tradition of
saying: way hey! ensnare the mare in a funfair!
       and play the game: pin the tale on the donkey!
heads or tails?      it looks pretty damnable
     in the first place: as all honesty hogs to pout and
***** a hoggish sneeze out of the story.

iii. shaken, not stirred

and indeed, how many a times
did not a neon blossom sprout,
thinking it might rattle an oratory
with an oak in autumn, and behold
a swarm of leaves descend -
not out of passing ease,
but out of wishful thinking
that some indentation might be made:
with whom the hands of will reside,
and yet: to no gratifying effect,
to whatever atomic-centralisation
dream, be that ego or be it hydrogen
(lending hands: so too
electric or thus negative, neutral and
thus proto) - shake foundation
and give a revising repertoire of
              the covering dust humanity
that once made famous: never
again to learn the humility of the start;
        to whatever centric dream that
does not waver in demands of orientation,
be it father (sun), son (shadow)
  or the holy spirit (night) -
  make them earn! be obscure!
            or simply say: in the community
of the stated congregation:
  i find all to be as night,
   and safer that plague the father:
  i am not akin to the shadow:
                   but the shadow in mirror.
so, a centric dream that does not
waver in demands for orientation,
has ever or will be enthroned in man's
heart as the stability of Sabbath's demands
       for less, oh so much less to agitate with!
as too, when the ancient appliances
were adorned by countless demands of
mimic, so too our modern
fibbles are to stage a usurping of
such things demanded and their mimic;
for with such disclosure does all fate
of anewed become burdened in what
history could be: shaken,
rather than simply a stirring of the void,
nothing more than the unburdening
of sweetening a cup of coffee, of that and
the layers: or bitter at the top, drank
through toward the sedimented sweetness -
and all that: hoping i could have retained
that silver spoon lodged in my ***
          when i first met her and thought about
consolidating marriage: so fresh, eager prune
of the flesh embodiment as first
    watered ash, then entombed in marble
and the eternal... ah
               but it was all just the faintest of dreams;
so lumberjack sleep ensued,
                      as did a kindred worth ethic:
we are a long way from Eden...
      there is but the idyll of the absurd fruition of
albreit macht frei... or a redefinement of
such stakes as: what occupies our days?
                    if not war, if not disease,
if not the Chinese... what does, occupy our days?
Mateuš Conrad Mar 2016
she asked him: why did you leave Edinburgh? and he didn't reply, but upon thinking out his reply to a deaf ear: because i didn't come here for you; 'lona 'lona, whisper sometimes, and i'll give you a cat's whisker.*

i was in venice,
yes,
i drank absinthe the wrong
way
on a beach,
spent three nights in a hostel
with a bunch of girls,
took a hebrew girl
for a taste of tourism,
listened to the shofar
before i entered a synagogue
outlet extension reading
the 613 commandments
on a computer screen...
venice's pavement traffic and eating
pistachio gelato,
nothing much,
i still preferred the Gothic distancing
of Edinburgh's nights
where i could be with cold-hands
and warm heart inviting;
basically i don't like tourist basins,
or tourist wombs for that matter...
am i looking at something predictable?
yes, i am, a billion other sperms
will see the same thing
and perhaps write about it to insinuate
poetic ambitions - too clogged up
your thinking is to redeem yourself
in poetry - you're hardly dislodged
for the art - get a guitar and couplet it
for a star-riddled pop music hit,
go on, on your way, elbow push through
the queue... go on, on your way...
oh wait, you need clapping to spur
you on?
              here's my clapping onomatopoeia:
blah blah, blah blah, blah blah;
yes, i was in venice,
didn't really care to write much about it -
i actually didn't, just now,
a sobering memory,
not the type of memory that gets
you drunk...
well it's there, a bit like the Maldives,
and it drives the delusion
that global warming isn't creeping
about the place like Nosferatu.

— The End —