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Tony Scallo Oct 2014
What is the word acknowledgement, to someone
Who never does anything about what they acknowledge?
What good is acknowledging a problem,
If you choose not to act upon it?

It's almost as if acknowledgement helps us believe
We are better people if we are aware of the bad within or around us
As if acknowledgement taints our minds
With a false sense of enlightenment
That being aware, is better than being there
To actually change what it is we acknowledge to be wrong

But if people only talked about their words, with no actions
We would only need to acknowledge, never having to change our ways
For acknowledgement can sometimes be, the golden word we need
That justifies an ignorance to our false sense of bliss
EFFECTS OF CHILD ABUSE ON PERFORMANCE OF PRIMARY SCHOOL IN KAPYEMIT WARD, TURBO CONSTITUENCY, UASIN-GISHU COUNTY.





BY
ERICK NYAKUNDI
KIS/03013/14




A RESEARCH PROJECTSUBMITED TO THE SCHOOL OF ARTS AND SOCIAL SCIENCES, DEPARTMENT OF SOCIOLOGY AND PSYCHOLOGY IN THE PARTIAL FULFILMENT FOR THE AWARD OF THE DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SOCIOLOGY



MAY, 2014

DECLARATION

I, the undersigned, declare that this project is my original work and that it has not been presented in any other university or institution for academic credit.

Signature...............................................­..... Date...................................
ERICK NYAKUNDI
KIS/03013/14






SUPERVISOR
This project has been submitted for examination with my approval as university supervisor
DR. W. O. ABUYA
Signature..................................................­.. Date....................................




DEDICATION
I dedicate this work to my Dad, Mom, my sister Lydia and my lovely brother Dun who contributed in one way or another to make this project to be successful.


















ACKNOWLEDGEMENT
I would like to thank all individuals who contributed and sacrificed their time towards completion of this project.
To my supervisor, for the guidance and support in the development of this research project, His advice and criticism made this project what it is.
Thanks to colleagues and friends for their suggestions, advice and encouragement. To all of you may God bless you abundantly for your tireless effort.

TABLE OF CONTENTS
Contents Page
DECLARATION i
DEDICATION ii
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT iii
TABLE OF CONTENTS iv
LIST OF TABLES vii
LIST OF FIGURE viii
ABSTRACT ix
CHAPTER ONE 10
STUDY OVERVIEW AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM 10
1.1 Background of the Study 10
1.2 Research Questions 13
1.3 Research Objectives 13
1.4 Justification of the Study 13
1.5 Significance of the Study 14
1.6 Scope of the Study 15
1.6.1Assumptions of the Study 16
CHAPTER TWO 17
LITERATURE REVIEW 17
2.1 Introduction 17
2.2 Common Forms of Child Abuse 17
2.2.1 Child ****** Abuse 17
2.2.2 Physiological or Emotional Abuse 17
2.2.3 Physical Abuse 18
2.2.4 Child Neglect or Abandonment 18
2.2.4.1 Physical Neglect 19
2.2.4.2 Educational Neglect 19
2.2.4.3 Medical Neglect 19
2.2.5 Child Fatalities 20
2.3 How Child Abuse Affects Academic Performance 20
2.3.1 Child Abuse and Academic Performance 20
2.3.2 Child Abuse and School Image 23
2.3.3 Child Abuse and Dropout Rate 25
2.4 Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 26
2.4.1 Role of Public Regulation 26
2.4.1.1 Nurturing and Attachment 27
2.4.1.2 Social Connections 27
2.5 Theoretical Framework 27
2.5.1 Learning Theory 28
2.5.1.1 Relationship with the Study 28
2.5.2 Family Dysfunction Theory 29
2.5.2.1 Relationship with the Study 29
CHAPTER THREE 30
RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODOLOGY 30
3.0 Introduction 30
3.1 Site Description 30
3.2 Research Design 30
3.3.1 Target Population 30
3.3.2 Sample Size and Sampling Procedure 31
3.4 Description of Research Instruments 32
3.4.1 Research Instrument 32
3.4.1.1 Questionnaire 32
3.5 Data Collection Procedure 32
3.5.1 Validity and Reliability of Research Instruments 33
3.5.1.1 Reliability of Research Instruments 33
3.5.1.2 Validity 33
3.6 Data Analysis and Presentation 33
CHAPTER FOUR 35
DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS 35
4.0 Introduction 35
4.1 Background Information 35
4.1.1 Age of the Respondents 35
4.1.2 *** of the Respondents 35
4.1.3 Education Level of the Respondents 36
4.1.4 Marital Status 36
4.2 Specific Information 37
4.2.1 Effects of Child Abuse on Academic Performance 37
4.2.2 How Child Abuse Affects Dropout Rate of Students in School 38
4.2.3 Proposed Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 41
CHAPTER FIVE 43
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS 43
5.0 Introduction 43
5.1 Summary of the findings 43
5.2 Discussion of the Findings 44
5.3 Conclusion 45
5.4 Recommendations 46
REFERENCES 47

LIST OF TABLES & FIGURES
Table 3.1 Target population 32
Table 3.1 Sample size 33
Table 4.1 Age of the Respondents 36
Table 4.2 *** of the Respondents 37
Table 4.3 Education Level of the Respondents 37
Table 4.4 Marital Status 38
Table 4.5 Effects of Child Abuse on Academic Performance 38
Table 4.6 How Child Abuse Affects Dropout Rate of Students in School 40
Figure 4.1 Views of the Pupils on Abuse 41
Table 4.7 Proposed Strategies that Schools can Employ to Curb Child Abuse 42





















ABSTRACT
Child abuse is the physical, ****** or emotional maltreatment or neglect of a child or children. The consequences of child maltreatment can be profound and may endure long after the abuse or neglect occurs. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effect of child abuse on school performance in Primary Schools in Kapyemit ward, Uasin-Gishu County. The objectives of the study were: To assess the impacts of child abuse on academic performance; to determine the effects of child abuse on schools image, to identify the impacts of child abuse on pupil drop out rate, to investigate the effects of child abuse on pupil transition rate. The study employed a survey study design. The study targeted 160 respondents which includes; 5 Head Teachers, 40 Teachers, 70 Pupils and 35 parents of which a sample size of 48 was obtained from using 30%. Purposive sampling technique was used in selecting the head teachers while simple random sampling technique will be used to select the teachers, Pupils and parents who formed the respondents of the study. Questionnaires and interview schedules were used as data collection instruments. Data was analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively and presented in form of tables, percentages and frequency. The study helped in the understanding of the effects of child abuse on the school performance, the realization of the roles parents and teachers play in the curbing of child abuse among pupils and raising awareness on the same.

CHAPTER ONE
STUDY OVERVIEW AND STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
1.1 Background of the Study
Child abuse is the physical, ****** or emotional maltreatment or neglect of a child or children. The consequences of child maltreatment can be profound and may endure long after the abuse or neglect occurs. The effects can appear in childhood, adolescence, or adulthood, and may affect various aspects of an individual's development (e.g., physical, cognitive, psychological, and behavioral). These effects range in consequence from minor physical injuries, low self-esteem, attention disorders, and poor peer relations to severe brain damage, extremely violent behavior, and death. In extreme cases, child abuse affects the performance of schools in the affected region (Daniel, 1978).
Performance refers to how students deal with their academic studies and how they cope with or accomplish different tasks given to them by their teachers. Performance is also the ability of a school to portray a good image which can influence the public (Decastro, 1978). There are several factors that influence the performance of a school at large, however, there is a critical factor that most researchers have avoided to discuss, and child abuse has been a crucial factor that has contributed to children’s dismal performance. Apart from children’s personal intelligence, child abuse is among then key factors contributing to poor performance of learners. Child abuse can lead to school dropping, emotional trauma or can even be fatal, hence destructing or even terminating the educational ambitions of a child. (Harris, 2005)
Worldwide, according to World Health Organization (WHO, 2000) approximately 40 million children are subjected to child abuse each year. According to Human Rights Watch (2001) about 30% of all severely disabled children relegated to special homes in the Ukraine died before they reached 18 years of age. UNICEF estimates that two million children died as a result of armed conflict during a recent 10-year period and that another six million were injured or disabled. In Canada, the U.S. and Mexico, over 6.5 million children annually are exposed to unwanted ****** materials over the internet; over 1.7 million of these report distress over exposure to these materials. In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department for Children and Families (DCF) define child maltreatment as any act or series of acts of commission or omission by a parent or other caregiver that results in harm, potential for harm, or threat of harm to a child. Child abuse can occur in a child's home, or in the organizations, schools or communities the child interacts with. Each year, approximately one million children around the world are introduced into commercial ****** exploitation despite this problem; these developed countries have put measures to curb the vice. Rehabilitation schools have been formed and introduction of counseling centers as well. Despite the prevalence of child abuse in this developed nations they narrowly affect the academic performance since there are organizations put in place to curb the situation e.g. child associations, guidance and counseling institutions, and school based counseling programs (Giles, 2001)
Concern for victims of child abuse in Africa expressed by the African network of the International Society for The Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect (ISPCAN) which gave five main presentations of child abuse: child labor, street wandering, ****** abuse, child battering and abandonment (Elma, 1977). Child labor according to the international labor organization (ILO), about 10 million children less than 15years in Africa are in formal employment, working long hours with poor pay and are exposed to substantial health hazards. Wandering of children refers to children, usually unkempt and with delinquent propensities, living rough in town. The reasons for children taking to the street remain poorly understood particularly in relation to factors in the child rather than parental hostility and economic (Dubowitz, 2002)
****** abuse is another. For example, arranged under-age marriages are common in some parts of the continent and doubt was often expressed as to whether a young girl fully gave consent to being betrothed (Galdsone, 1965). Prevalence rates in Africa are very difficult to ascertain because of the fear of disclosure by victims and lack of proper documentation. Most of the girls by reasons of shame fear or surprisingly respect for their usually older perpetrators. Physical battering is also eminent. Physical abuse of children is widely claimed to berate in the third world; however, there are anecdotes from east Africa skeletal frame or localized body areas of all first attendees aged 0-12 years at this hospital during the four-year period 1 January 1987 to 31 December 1990 (Garbarino, 1975). Sixty-nine of these reports reveals evidence of multiple bone fractures wither without evidence of rib or skull fracture. Abandonment of children to roam around the streets in what we call street children is also eminent in Africa, though valid and adequate information on abandonment are difficult to obtain due mainly to failure of offending parents to show up out of guilt, shame, judicial repercussions or a combination of these. However, some euro-American missionaries identified inter alia breech birth. (Erickson, 2003)
Child protection measures in Kenya are currently not implemented effectively and fully (Galdstone, 1965). Compliance with such legislation would increase if the magnitude of the problem and better knowledge about the factors that put children at risk was available. Additionally, involving stakeholders, especially agencies charged with protection, as well as involving affected children, will highlight the issues and thereby promote adherence to protection policies. Kenyan children, child activists and children organizations are pinning their hopes on the implementation of the Children’s Act to improve the lot of the nation’s youth. The Act, which came into effect on 1 March 2002, puts in place full safeguards for the rights of the child. Its passage was a giant stride in harmonizing the national laws with international agreements which Kenya has signed such as the UN Conventions on the Rights of the Child (CRC, 2002)
There is hope that the new legislation will dramatically change the inattention, neglect and abuse towards child rights. The Act outlaws any form discrimination of children, and forbids Female Genital Mutilation (FGM), child prostitution, and child labor, among other forms of abuse. The Children’s Act has immensely improved the lives of many Kenyan children plagued with high illiteracy levels, frequent **** cases and child labor since it guarantees children the right to health and medical care, provision of which is the responsibility of the parents, the extended family and the government (Erickson, 2005).
Cases of child abuse in Uasin-Gishu region have been so eminent in the recent years ((Kenya Media Report, 2004). In the year 2010 and the year 2011, there was a program started to rehabilitate this behavior. This problem is clearly evident when you first arrive in Eldoret town, it is among the towns in the country with the highest number of abandoned children who keep on moving from one Centre to another seeking help from passersby. Parents have developed behaviors of abandoning their children and deliberately sending them to the town so that they can benefit from their borrowing. So to say this has led to child labor in this region. High profile cases of school dropouts have been recorded regarding the environs of this region. Young school children from different locations in Eldoret converge in town to persuade people to offer them financial assistance. Some attend school in numbered days and decide to spend some good number of days out of school.
The communities and societies around tend to assume this situation and term it as norm. A few who might seem concerned lack cooperation from the rest. This has adversely affected the performance of most of schools, hence leading to poor living standards of the people and a poisoned future of a young citizen. The problem has affected learners in regions like many areas in Uasin-Gishu County. It has really affected child development and affected their attendance and performance in school. Little intervention measures has been taken to advocate the holistic development of the children. It was to this reason that the researcher conducted the research in the named above region
1.2 Research Questions
The study was guided by the following questions;
1) What is the effect of child abuse on the academic performance of students in Kapyemit Ward?  
2) What are some of the proposed strategies that schools can employ to curb child abuse?
1.3 Research Objectives
The study was guided by the following research objectives;
1) To identify the effect of child abuse on the academic performance of students in Kapyemit Ward.
2) To identify proposed strategies that can be employed to help curb child abuse.
1.4 Justification of the Study
It is becoming increasingly difficult to separate child abuse prevention into separate categories. For instance, strategies on the societal level include increasing the “value” of children, increasing the economic self-sufficiency of families, discouraging corporal punishment and other forms of violence, making health care more accessible and affordable, expanding and improving coordination of social services, improving the identification and treatment of psychological problems and alcohol and drug abuse, providing more affordable child care and preventing the birth of unwanted children.
Very little analysis has been done to estimate the total cost of preventing child abuse and neglect or the long-term social costs of not preventing it. There is now a move to situate child abuse and neglect within the continuum of intervention which addresses multiple aspects of family behaviors. The efficacy of tackling portions of the problem of child abuse apart from broader societal needs is not known. And, perhaps prevention can only come in tandem with efforts to reduce poverty, improve health care and make children’s issues a national priority. However, despite these constraints, evaluations of prevention programs can be improved by coming to terms with definitions of key varia
Like a psychotic docent in the wilderness,
I will not speak in perfect Ciceronian cadences.
I draw my voice from a much deeper cistern,
Preferring the jittery synaptic archive,
So sublimely unfiltered, random and profane.
And though I am sequestered now,
Confined within the walls of a gated, golf-coursed,
Over-55 lunatic asylum (for Active Seniors I am told),
I remain oddly puerile,
Remarkably refreshed and unfettered.  
My institutionalization self-imposed,
Purposed for my own serenity, and also the safety of others.
Yet I abide, surprisingly emancipated and frisky.
I may not have found the peace I seek,
But the quiet has mercifully come at last.

The nexus of inner and outer space is context for my story.
I was born either in Brooklyn, New York or Shungopavi, Arizona,
More of intervention divine than census data.
Shungopavi: a designated place for tribal statistical purposes.
Shungopavi: an ovine abbatoir and shaman’s cloister.
The Hopi: my mother’s people, a state of mind and grace,
Deftly landlocked, so cunningly circumscribed,
By both interior and outer Navajo boundaries.
The Navajo: a coyote trickster people; a nation of sheep thieves,
Hornswoggled and landlocked themselves,
Subsumed within three of the so-called Four Corners:
A 3/4ths compromise and covenant,
Pickled in firewater, swaddled in fine print,
A veritable swindle concocted back when the USA
Had Manifest Destiny & mayhem on its mind.

The United States: once a pubescent synthesis of blood and thunder,
A bold caboodle of trooper spit and polish, unwashed brawlers, Scouts and      
Pathfinders, mountain men, numb-nut ne'er-do-wells,
Buffalo Bills & big-balled individualists, infected, insane with greed.
According to the Gospel of His Holiness Saint Zinn,
A People’s’ History of the United States: essentially state-sponsored terrorism,
A LAND RUSH grabocracy, orchestrated, blessed and anointed,
By a succession of Potomac sharks, Great White Fascist Fathers,
Far-Away-on-the Bay, the Bay we call The Chesapeake.
All demented national patriarchs craving lebensraum for God and country.
The USA: a 50-state Leviathan today, a nation jury-rigged,
Out of railroad ties, steel rails and baling wire,
Forged by a litany of lies, rapaciousness and ******,
And jaw-torn chunks of terra firma,
Bites both large and small out of our well-****** Native American ***.

Or culo, as in va’a fare in culo (literally "go do it in the ***")
Which Italian Americans pronounce as fongool.
The language center of my brain,
My sub-cortical Broca’s region,
So fraught with such semantic misfires,
And autonomic linguistic seizures,
Compel acknowledgement of a father’s contribution,
To both the gene pool and the genocide.
Columbus Day:  a conspicuously absent holiday out here in Indian Country.
No festivals or Fifth Avenue parades.
No excuse for ethnic hoopla. No guinea feast. No cannoli. No tarantella.
No excuse to not get drunk and not **** your sister-in-law.
Emphatically a day for prayer and contemplation,
A day of infamy like Pearl Harbor and 9/11,
October 12, 1492: not a discovery; an invasion.

Growing up in Brooklyn, things were always different for me,
Different in some sort of redskin/****/****--
Choose Your Favorite Ethnic Slur-sort of way.
The American Way: dehumanization for fun and profit.
Melting *** anonymity and denial of complicity with evil.
But this is no time to bring up America’s sordid past,
Or, a personal pet peeve: Indian Sovereignty.
For Uncle Sam and his minions, an ever-widening, conveniently flexible concept,
Not a commandment or law,
Not really a treaty or a compact,
Or even a business deal.  Let’s get real:
It was not even much in the way of a guideline.
Just some kind of an advisory, a bulletin or newsletter,
Could it merely have been a free-floating suggestion?
Yes, that’s it exactly: a suggestion.

Over and under halcyon American skies,
Over and around those majestic purple mountain peaks,
Those trapped in poetic amber waves of wheat and oats,
Corn and barley, wheat shredded and puffed,
Corn flaked and milled, Wheat Chex and Wheaties, oats that are little Os;
Kix and Trix, Fiber One, and Kashi-Go-Lean, Lucky Charms and matso *****,
Kreplach and kishka,
Polenta and risotto.
Our cantaloupe and squash patch,
Our fruited prairie plain, our delicate ecological Eden,
In balance and harmony with nature, as Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce instructs:
“These white devils are not going to,
Stop ****** and killing, cheating and eating us,
Until they have the whole ******* enchilada.
I’m talking about ‘from sea to shining sea.’”

“I fight no more forever,” Babaloo.
So I must steer this clunky keelboat of discovery,
Back to the main channel of my sad and starry demented river.
My warpath is personal but not historical.
It is my brain’s own convoluted cognitive process I cannot saavy.
Whatever biochemical or—as I suspect more each day—
Whatever bio-mechanical protocols govern my identity,
My weltanschauung: my world-view, as sprechen by proto-Nazis;
Putz philosophers of the 17th, 18th & 19th century.
The German intelligentsia: what a cavalcade of maniacal *******!
Why is this Jew unsurprised these Zarathustra-fueled Übermenschen . . .
Be it the Kaiser--Caesar in Deutsch--Bismarck, ******, or,
Even that Euro-*****,  Angela Merkel . . . Why am I not surprised these Huns,
Get global grab-*** on the sauerbraten cabeza every few generations?
To be, or not to be the ***** bullgoose loony: GOTT.

Biomechanical protocols govern my identity and are implanted while I sleep.
My brain--my weak and weary CPU--is replenished, my discs defragmented.
A suite of magnetic and optical white rooms, cleansed free of contaminants,
Gun mounts & lifeboat stations manned and ready,
Standing at attention and saluting British snap-style,
Snap-to and heel click, ramrod straight and cheerful: “Ready for duty, Sir.”
My mind is ravenous, lusting for something, anything to process.
Any memory or image, lyric or construct,
Be they short-term dailies or deeply imprinted.
Fixations archived one and all in deep storage time and space.
Memories, some subconscious, most vaporous;
Others--the scary ones—eidetic: frighteningly detailed and extraordinarily vivid.
Precise cognitive transcripts; recollected so richly rife and fresh.
Visual, auditory, tactile, gustatory, and olfactory reloads:
Queued up and increasingly re-experienced.

The bio-data of six decades: it’s all there.
People, countless, places and things cataloged.
Every event, joy and trauma enveloped from within or,
Accessed externally from biomechanical storage devices.
The random access memory of a lifetime,
Read and recollected from cerebral repositories and vaults,
All the while the entire greedy process overseen,
Over-driven by that all-subservient British bat-man,
Rummaging through the data in batches small and large,
Internal and external drives working in seamless syncopation,
Self-referential, at times paradoxical or infinitely looped.
“Cogito ergo sum."
Descartes stripped it down to the basics but there’s more to the story:
Thinking about thinking.
A curse and minefield for the cerebral:  metacognition.

No, it is not the fact that thought exists,
Or even the thoughts themselves.
But the information technology of thought that baffles me,
As adaptive and profound as any evolution posited by Darwin,
Beyond the wetware in my skull, an entirely new operating system.
My mental and cultural landscape are becoming one.
Machines are connecting the two.
It’s what I am and what I am becoming.
Once more for emphasis:
It is the information technology of who I am.
It is the operating system of my mental and cultural landscape.
It is the machinery connecting the two.
This is the central point of this narrative:
Metacognition--your superego’s yenta Cassandra,
Screaming, screaming in your psychic ear, your good ear:

“LISTEN:  The machines are taking over, taking you over.
Your identity and train of thought are repeatedly hijacked,
Switched off the main line onto spurs and tangents,
Only marginally connected or not at all.
(Incoming TEXT from my editor: “Lighten Up, Giuseppi!”)
Reminding me again that most in my audience,
Rarely get past the comic page. All righty then: think Calvin & Hobbes.
John Calvin, a precocious and adventurous six-year old boy,
Subject to flights of 16th Century French theological fancy.
Thomas Hobbes, a sardonic anthropomorphic tiger from 17th Century England,
Mumbling about life being “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short.”
Taken together--their antics and shenanigans--their relationship to each other,
Remind us of our dual nature; explore for us broad issues like public education;
The economy, environmentalism & the Global ****** Thermometer;
Not to mention the numerous flaws of opinion polls.



And again my editor TEXTS me, reminds me again: “LIGHTEN UP!”
Consoling me:  “Even Shakespeare had to play to the groundlings.”
The groundlings, AKA: The Rabble.
Yes. Even the ******* Bard, even Willie the Shake,
Had to contend with a decidedly lowbrow copse of carrion.
Oh yes, the groundlings, a carrion herd, a flying flock of carrion seagulls,
Carrion crow, carrion-feeders one and all,
And let’s throw Sheryl Crow into the mix while we’re at it:
“Hit it! This ain't no disco. And it ain't no country club either, this is L.A.”  

                  Send "All I Wanna Do" Ringtone to your Cell              

Once more, I digress.
The Rabble:  an amorphous, gelatinous Jabba the Hutt of commonality.
The Rabble: drunk, debauched & lawless.
Too *****-delicious to stop Bill & Hilary from thinking about tomorrow;
Too Paul McCartney My Love Does it Good to think twice.

The Roman Saturnalia: a weeklong **** fest.
The Saturnalia: originally a pagan kink-fest in honor of the deity Saturn.
Dovetailing nicely with the advent of the Christian era,
With a project started by Il Capo di Tutti Capi,
One of the early popes, co-opting the Roman calendar between 17 and 25 December,
Putting the finishing touches on the Jesus myth.
For Brooklyn Hopi-***-Jew baby boomers like me,
Saturnalia manifested itself as Disco Fever,
Unpleasant years of electrolysis, scrunched ***** in tight polyester
For Roman plebeians, for the great unwashed citizenry of Rome,
Saturnalia was just a great big Italian wedding:
A true family blowout and once-in-a-lifetime ego-trip for Dad,
The father of the bride, Vito Corleone, Don for A Day:
“Some think the world is made for fun and frolic,
And so do I! Funicula, Funiculi!”

America: love it or leave it; my country right or wrong.
Sure, we were citizens of Rome,
But any Joe Josephus spending the night under a Tiber bridge,
Or sleeping off a three day drunk some afternoon,
Up in the Coliseum bleachers, the cheap seats, out beyond the monuments,
The original three monuments in the old stadium,
Standing out in fair territory out in center field,
Those three stone slabs honoring Gehrig, Huggins, and Babe.
Yes, in the house that Ruth built--Home of the Bronx Bombers--***?
Any Joe Josephus knows:  Roman citizenship doesn’t do too much for you,
Except get you paxed, taxed & drafted into the Legion.
For us the Roman lifestyle was HIND-*** humble.
We plebeians drew our grandeur by association with Empire.
Very few Romans and certainly only those of the patrician class lived high,
High on the hog, enjoying a worldly extravaganza, like—whom do we both know?

Okay, let’s say Laurence Olivier as Crassus in Spartacus.
Come on, you saw Spartacus fifteen ******* times.
Remember Crassus?
Crassus: that ***** twisted **** trying to get his freak on with,
Tony Curtis in a sunken marble tub?
We plebes led lives of quiet *****-scratching desperation,
A bunch of would-be legionnaires, diseased half the time,
Paid in salt tablets or baccala, salted codfish soaked yellow in olive oil.
Stiffs we used to call them on New Year’s Eve in Brooklyn.
Let’s face it: we were hyenas eating someone else’s ****,
Stage-door jackals, Juvenal-come-late-lies, a mob of moronic mook boneheads
Bought off with bread & circuses and Reality TV.
Each night, dished up a wide variety of lowbrow Elizabethan-era entertainments.  
We contemplate an evening on the town, downtown—
(cue Petula Clark/Send "Downtown" Ringtone to your Cell)

On any given London night, to wit:  mummers, jugglers, bear & bull baiters.
How about dog & **** fighters, quoits & skittles, alehouses & brothels?
In short, somewhere, anywhere else,
Anywhere other than down along the Thames,
At Bankside in Southwark, down in the Globe Theater mosh pit,
Slugging it out with the groundlings whose only interest,
In the performance is the choreography of swordplay and stale ****** puns.
Meanwhile, Hugh Fennyman--probably a fellow Jew,
An English Renaissance Bugsy Siegel or Mickey Cohen—
Meanwhile Fennyman, the local mob boss is getting his ya-yas,
Roasting the feet of my text-messaging editor, Philip Henslowe.
Poor and pathetic Henslowe, works on commission, always scrounging,
But a true patron of my craft, a gentleman of infinite jest and patience,
Spiritual subsistence, and every now and then a good meal at some,
Sawdust joint with oyster shells, and a Prufrockian silk purse of T.S. Eliot gold.

Poor, pathetic Henslowe, trussed up by Fennyman,
His editorial feet in what looks like a Japanese hibachi.
Henslowe’s feet to the fire--feet to the fire—get it?
A catchy phrase whose derivation conjures up,
A grotesque yet vivid image of torture,
An exquisite insight into how such phrases ingress the idiom,
Not to mention a scene once witnessed at a secret Romanian CIA prison,
I’d been ordered to Bucharest not long after 9/11,
Handling the rendition and torture of Habib Ghazzawy,

An entirely innocent falafel maker from Steinway Street, Astoria, Queens.
Shock the Monkey: it’s what we do. GOTO:
Peter Gabriel - Shock the Monkey/
(HQ music video) - YouTube//
www.youtube.com/
Poor, pathetic, ******-on Henslowe.


Fennyman :  (his avarice is whet by something Philly screams out about a new script)  "A play takes time. Find actors; Rehearsals. Let's say open in three weeks. That's--what--five hundred groundlings at tuppence each, in addition four hundred groundlings tuppence each, in addition four hundred backsides at three pence--a penny extra for a cushion, call it two hundred cushions, say two performances for safety how much is that Mr. Frees?"
Jacobean Tweet, John (1580-1684) Webster:  “I saw him kissing her bubbies.”

It’s Geoffrey Rush, channeling Henslowe again,
My editor, a singed smoking madman now,
Feet in an ice bucket, instructing me once more:
“Lighten things up, you know . . .
Comedy, love and a bit with a dog.”
I digress again and return to Hopi Land, back to my shaman-monastic abattoir,
That Zen Center in downtown Shungopavi.
At the Tribal Enrolment Office I make my case for a Certificate of Indian Blood,
Called a CIB by the Natives and the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs.
The BIA:  representing gold & uranium miners, cattle and sheep ranchers,
Sodbusters & homesteaders; railroaders and dam builders since 1824.
Just in time for Andrew Jackson, another false friend of Native America,
Just before Old Hickory, one of many Democratic Party hypocrites and scoundrels,
Gives the FONGOOL, up the CULO go ahead.
Hey Andy, I’ve got your Jacksonian democracy: Hanging!
The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) mission is to:   "… enhance the quality of life, to promote economic opportunity, and to carry out the responsibility to protect and improve the trust assets of American Indians, Indian tribes, and Alaska Natives. What’s that in the fine print?  Uncle Sammy holds “the trust assets of American Indians.”

Here’s a ******* tip, Geronimo: if he trusted you,
It would ALL belong to you.
To you and The People.
But it’s all fork-tongued white *******.
If true, Indian sovereignty would cease to be a sick one-liner,
Cease to be a blunt force punch line, more of,
King Leopold’s 19th Century stand-up comedy schtick,
Leo Presents: The **** of the Congo.
La Belgique mission civilisatrice—
That’s what French speakers called Uncle Leo’s imperial public policy,
Bringing the gift of civilization to central Africa.
Like Manifest Destiny in America, it had a nice colonial ring to it.
“Our manifest destiny [is] to overspread the continent,
Allotted by Providence for the free development,
Of our yearly multiplying millions.”  John L. O'Sullivan, 1845

Our civilizing mission or manifest destiny:
Either/or, a catchy turn of phrase;
Not unlike another ironic euphemism and semantic subterfuge:
The Pacification of the West; Pacification?
Hardly: decidedly not too peaceful for Cochise & Tonto.
Meanwhile, Madonna is cash rich but disrespected Evita poor,
To wit: A ****** on the Rocks (throwing in a byte or 2 of Da Vinci Code).
Meanwhile, Miss Ciccone denied her golden totem *****.
They snubbed that little guinea ****, didn’t they?
Snubbed her, robbed her rotten.
Evita, her magnum opus, right up there with . . .
Her SNL Wayne’s World skit:
“Get a load of the unit on that guy.”
Or, that infamous MTV Music Video Awards stunt,
That classic ***** Lip-Lock with Britney Spears.

How could I not see that Oscar snubola as prime evidence?
It was just another stunning case of American anti-Italian racial animus.
Anyone familiar with Noam Chomsky would see it,
Must view it in the same context as the Sacco & Vanzetti case,
Or, that arbitrary lynching of 9 Italian-Americans in New Orleans in 1891,
To cite just two instances of anti-Italian judicial reach & mob violence,
Much like what happened to my cousin Dominic,
Gang-***** by the Harlem Globetrotters, in their locker room during halftime,
While he working for Abe Saperstein back in 1952.
Dom was doing advance for Abe, supporting creation of The Washington Generals:
A permanent stable of hoop dream patsies and foils,
Named for the ever freewheeling, glad-handing, backslapping,
Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force (SCAEF), himself,
Namely General Dwight D. Eisenhower, the man they liked,
And called IKE: quite possibly a crypto Jew from Abilene.

Of course, Harry Truman was my first Great White Fascist Father,
Back in 1946, when I first opened my eyes, hung up there,
High above, looking down from the adobe wall.
Surveying the entire circular kiva,
I had the best seat in the house.
Don’t let it be said my Spider Grandmother or Hopi Corn Mother,
Did not want me looking around at things,
Discovering what made me special.
Didn’t divine intervention play a significant part of my creation?
Knowing Mamma Mia and Nonna were Deities,
Gave me an edge later on the streets of Brooklyn.
The Cradleboard: was there ever a more divinely inspired gift to human curiosity? The Cradleboard: a perfect vantage point, an infant’s early grasp,
Of life harmonious, suspended between Mother Earth and Father Sky.
Simply put: the Hopi should be running our ******* public schools.

But it was IKE with whom I first associated,
Associated with the concept 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
I liked IKE. Who didn’t?
What was not to like?
He won the ******* war, didn’t he?
And he wasn’t one of those crazy **** John Birchers,
Way out there, on the far right lunatic Republican fringe,
Was he? (It seems odd and nearly impossible to believe in 2013,
That there was once a time in our Boomer lives,
When the extreme right wing of the Republican Party
Was viewed by the FBI as an actual threat to American democracy.)
Understand: it was at a time when The FBI,
Had little ideological baggage,
But a great appetite for secrets,
The insuppressible Jay Edgar doing his thang.

IKE: of whom we grew so, oh-so Fifties fond.
Good old reliable, Nathan Shaking IKE:
He’d been fixed, hadn’t he? Had had the psychic snip.
Snipped as a West Point cadet & parade ground martinet.
Which made IKE a good man to have in a pinch,
Especially when crucial policy direction was way above his pay grade.
Cousin Dom was Saperstein’s bagman, bribing out the opposition,
Which came mainly from religious and patriotic organizations,
Viewing the bogus white sports franchise as obscene.
The Washington Generals, Saperstein’s new team would have but one opponent,
And one sole mission: to serve as the **** of endless jokes and sight gags for—
Negroes.  To play the chronic fools of--
Negroes.  To be chronically humiliated and insulted by—
Negroes.  To run up and down the boards all night, being outran by—
Negroes.  Not to mention having to wear baggy silk shorts.



Meadowlark Lemon:  “Yeah, Charlie, we ***** that grease-ball Dominic; we shagged his guinea mouth and culo rotten.”  

(interviewed in his Scottsdale, AZ winter residence in 2003 by former ESPN commentator Charlie Steiner, Malverne High School, Class of ’67.)
                                                        
  ­                                                                 ­                 
IKE, briefed on the issue by higher-ups, quickly got behind the idea.
The Harlem Globetrotters were to exist, and continue to exist,
Are sustained financially by Illuminati sponsors,
For one reason and one reason only:
To serve elite interests that the ***** be kept down and subservient,
That the minstrel show be perpetuated,
A policy surviving the elaborate window dressing of the civil rights movement, Affirmative action, and our first Uncle Tom president.
Case in point:  Charles Barkley, Dennis Rodman & Metta World Peace Artest.
Cha-cha-cha changing again:  I am Robert Allen Zimmermann,
A whiny, skinny Jew, ****** and rolling in from Minnesota,
Arrested, obviously a vagrant, caught strolling around his tony Jersey enclave,
Having moved on up the list, the A-list, a special invitation-only,
Yom Kippur Passover Seder:  Next Year in Jerusalem, Babaloo!

I take ownership of all my autonomic and conditioned reflexes;
Each personal neural arc and pathway,
All shenanigans & shellackings,
Or blunt force cognitive traumas.
It’s all percolating nicely now, thank you,
In kitchen counter earthen crockery:
Random access memory: a slow-cook crockpot,
Bubbling through my psychic sieve.
My memories seem only remotely familiar,
Distant and vague, at times unreal:
An alien hybrid databank accessed accidently on purpose;
Flaky science sustains and monitors my nervous system.
And leads us to an overwhelming question:
Is it true that John Dillinger’s ******* is in the Smithsonian Museum?
Enquiring minds want to know, Kemosabe!

“Any last words, *******?” TWEETS Adam Smith.
Postmortem cyber-graffiti, an epitaph carved in space;
Last words, so singular and simple,
Across the universal great divide,
Frisbee-d, like a Pleistocene Kubrick bone,
Tossed randomly into space,
Morphing into a gyroscopic space station.
Mr. Smith, a calypso capitalist, and me,
Me, the Poet Laureate of the United States and Adam;
Who, I didn’t know from Adam.
But we tripped the light fantastic,
We boogied the Protestant Work Ethic,
To the tune of that old Scotch-Presbyterian favorite,
Variations of a 5-point Calvinist theme: Total Depravity; Election; Particular Redemption; Irresistible Grace; & Perseverance of the Saints.

Mr. Smith, the author of An Inquiry into the Nature
& Causes of the Wealth of Nations (1776),
One of the best-known, intellectual rationales for:
Free trade, capitalism, and libertarianism,
The latter term a euphemism for Social Darwinism.
Prior to 1764, Calvinists in France were called Huguenots,
A persecuted religious majority . . . is that possible?
A persecuted majority of Edict of Nantes repute.
Adam Smith, likely of French Huguenot Jewish ancestry himself,
Reminds me that it is my principal plus interest giving me my daily gluten.
And don’t think the irony escapes me now,
A realization that it has taken me nearly all my life to see again,
What I once saw so vividly as a child, way back when.
Before I put away childish things, including the following sentiment:
“All I need is the air that I breathe.”

  Send "The Air That I Breathe" Ringtone to your Cell  

The Hippies were right, of course.
The Hollies had it all figured out.
With the answer, as usual, right there in the lyrics.
But you were lucky if you were listening.
There was a time before I embraced,
The other “legendary” economists:
The inexorable Marx,
The savage society of Veblen,
The heresies we know so well of Keynes.
I was a child.
And when I was a child, I spake as a child—
Grazie mille, King James—
I understood as a child; I thought as a child.
But when I became a man I jumped on the bus with the band,
Hopped on the irresistible bandwagon of Adam Smith.

Smith:  “Any last words, *******?”
Okay, you were right: man is rationally self-interested.
Grazie tanto, Scotch Enlightenment,
An intellectual movement driven by,
An alliance of Calvinists and Illuminati,
Freemasons and Johnny Walker Black.
Talk about an irresistible bandwagon:
Smith, the gloomy Malthus, and David Ricardo,
Another Jew boy born in London, England,
Third of 17 children of a Sephardic family of Portuguese origin,
Who had recently relocated from the Dutch Republic.
******* Jews!
Like everything shrewd, sane and practical in this world,
WE also invented the concept:  FOLLOW THE MONEY.

The lyrics: if you were really listening, you’d get it:
Respiration keeps one sufficiently busy,
Just breathing free can be a full-time job,
Especially when--borrowing a phrase from British cricketers—,
One contemplates the sorry state of the wicket.
Now that I am gainfully superannuated,
Pensioned off the employment radar screen.
Oft I go there into the wild ebon yonder,
Wandering the brain cloud at will.
My journey indulges curiosity, creativity and deceit.
I free range the sticky wicket,
I have no particular place to go.
Snagging some random fact or factoid,
A stop & go rural postal route,
Jumping on and off the brain cloud.

Just sampling really,
But every now and then, gorging myself,
At some information super smorgasbord,
At a Good Samaritan Rest Stop,
I ponder my own frazzled neurology,
When I was a child—
Before I learned the grim economic facts of life and Judaism,
Before I learned Hebrew,
Before my laissez-faire Bar Mitzvah lessons,
Under the rabbinical tutelage of Rebbe Kahane--
I knew what every clever child knows about life:
The surfing itself is the destination.
Accessing RAM--random access memory—
On a strictly need to know basis.
RAM:  a pretty good name for consciousness these days.

If I were an Asimov or Sir Arthur (Sri Lankabhimanya) Clarke,
I’d get freaky now, riffing on Terminators, Time Travel and Cyborgs.
But this is truth not science fiction.
Nevertheless, someone had better,
Come up with another name for cyborg.
Some other name for a critter,
Composed of both biological and artificial parts?
Parts-is-parts--be they electronic, mechanical or robotic.
But after a lifetime of science fiction media,
After a steady media diet, rife with dystopian technology nightmares,
Is anyone likely to admit to being a cyborg?
Since I always give credit where credit is due,
I acknowledge that cyborg was a term coined in 1960,
By Manfred Clynes & Nathan S. Kline and,
Used to identify a self-regulating human-machine system in outer space.

Five years later D. S. Halacy's: Cyborg: Evolution of the Superman,
Featured an introduction, which spoke of:  “… a new frontier, that was not,
Merely space, but more profoundly, the relationship between inner space,
And outer space; a bridge, i.e., between mind and matter.”
So, by definition, a cyborg defined is an organism with,
Technology-enhanced abilities: an antenna array,
Replacing what was once sentient and human.
My glands, once in control of metabolism and emotions,
Have been replaced by several servomechanisms.
I am biomechanical and gluttonous.
Soaking up and breathing out the atmosphere,
My Baby Boom experience of six decades,
Homogenized and homespun, feedback looped,
Endlessly networked through predigested mass media,
Culture as demographically targeted content.

This must have something to do with my own metamorphosis.
I think of Gregor Samsa, a Kafkaesque character if there ever was one.
And though we share common traits,
My evolutionary progress surpasses and transcends his.
Samsa--Phylum and Class--was, after all, an insect.
Nonetheless, I remain a changeling.
Have I not seen many stages of growth?
Each a painful metamorphic cycle,
From exquisite first egg,
Through caterpillar’s appetite & squirm.
To phlegmatic bliss and pupa quietude,
I unfold my wings in a rush of Van Gogh palette,
Color, texture, movement and grace, lift off, flapping in flight.
My eyes have witnessed wondrous transformations,
My experience, nouveau riche and distinctly self-referential;
For the most part unspecific & longitudinally pedestrian.

Yes, something has happened to me along the way.
I am no longer certain of my identity as a human being.
Time and technology has altered my basic wiring diagram.
I suspect the sophisticated gadgets and tools,
I’ve been using to shape & make sense of my environment,
Have reared up and turned around on me.
My tools have reshaped my brain & central nervous system.
Remaking me as something simultaneously more and less human.
The electronic toys and tools I once so lovingly embraced,
Have turned unpredictable and rabid,
Their bite penetrating my skin and septic now, a cluster of implanted sensors,
Content: currency made increasingly more valuable as time passes,
Served up by and serving the interests of a pervasively predatory 1%.
And the rest of us: the so-called 99%?
No longer human; simply put by both Howards--Beale & Zinn--

Humanoid.
Nigel Morgan Nov 2012
As a woman, and in the service of my Lord the Emperor Wu, my life is governed by his command. At twenty I was summoned to this life at court and have made of it what I can, within the limitations of the courtesan I am supposed to be, and the poet I have now become. Unlike my male counterparts, some of whom have lately found seclusion in the wilderness of rivers and mountains, I have only my personal court of three rooms and its tiny garden and ornamental pond. But I live close to the surrounding walls of the Zu-lin Gardens with its astronomical observatories and bold attempts at recreating illusions of celebrated locations in the Tai mountains. There, walking with my cat Xi-Lu in the afternoons, I imagine a solitary life, a life suffused with the emptiness I crave.
 
In the hot, dry summer days my maid Mei-Lim and I have sought a temporary retreat in the pine forests above Lingzhi. Carried in a litter up the mountain paths we are left in a commodious hut, its open walls making those simple pleasures of drinking, eating and sleeping more acute, intense. For a few precious days I rest and meditate, breathe the mountain air and the resinous scents of the trees. I escape the daily commerce of the court and belong to a world that for the rest of the year I have to imagine, the world of the recluse. To gain the status of the recluse, open to my male counterparts, is forbidden to women of the court. I am woman first, a poet and calligrapher second. My brother, should he so wish, could present a petition to revoke his position as a man of letters, an official commentator on the affairs of state. But he is not so inclined. He has already achieved notoriety and influence through his writing on the social conditions of town and city. He revels in a world of chatter, gossip and intrigue; he appears to fear the wilderness life.  
 
I must be thankful that my own life is maintained on the periphery. I am physically distant from the hub of daily ceremonial. I only participate at my Lord’s express command. I regularly feign illness and fatigue to avoid petty conflict and difficulty. Yet I receive commissions I cannot waver: to honour a departed official; to celebrate a son’s birth to the Second Wife; to fulfil in verse my Lord’s curious need to know about the intimate sorrows of his young concubines, their loneliness and heartache.
 
Occasionally a Rhapsody is requested for an important visitor. The Emperor Wu is proud to present as welcome gifts such poetic creations executed in fine calligraphy, and from a woman of his court. Surely a sign of enlightment and progress he boasts! Yet in these creations my observations are parochial: early morning frost on the cabbage leaves in my garden; the sound of geese on their late afternoon flight to Star Lake; the disposition of the heavens on an Autumn night. I live by the Tao of Lao-Tzu, perceiving the whole world from my doorstep.
 
But I long for the reclusive life, to leave this court for my family’s estate in the valley my peasant mother lived as a child. At fourteen she was chosen to sustain the Emperor’s annual wish for young girls to be groomed for concubinage. Like her daughter she is tall, though not as plain as I; she put her past behind her and conceded her adolescence to the training required by the court. At twenty she was recommended to my father, the court archivist, as second wife. When she first met this quiet, dedicated man on the day before her marriage she closed her eyes in blessing. My father taught her the arts of the library and schooled her well. From her I have received keen eyes of jade green and a prestigious memory, a memory developed she said from my father’s joy of reading to her in their private hours, and before she could read herself. Each morning he would examine her to discover what she had remembered of the text read the night before. When I was a little child she would quote to me the Confucian texts on which she had been ****** schooled, and she then would tell me of her childhood home. She primed my imagination and my poetic world with descriptions of a domestic rural life.
 
Sometimes in the arms of my Lord I have freely rhapsodized in chusi metre these delicate word paintings of my mother’s home. She would say ‘We will walk now to the ruined tower beside the lake. Listen to the carolling birds. As the sparse clouds move across the sky the warm sun strokes the winter grass. Across the deep lake the forests are empty. Now we are climbing the narrow steps to the platform from which you and I will look towards the sun setting in the west. See the shadows are lengthening and the air becomes colder. The blackbird’s solitary song heralds the evening.  Look, an owl glides silently beneath us.’
 
My Lord will then quote from Hsieh Ling-yun,.
 
‘I meet sky, unable to soar among clouds,
face a lake, call those depths beyond me.’
 
And I will match this quotation, as he will expect.
 
‘Too simple-minded to perfect Integrity,
and too feeble to plough fields in seclusion.’
 
He will then gaze into my eyes in wonder that this obscure poem rests in my memory and that I will decode the minimal grammar of these early characters with such poetry. His characters: Sky – Bird – Cloud – Lake – Depth. My characters: Fool – Truth – Child – Winter field – Isolation.
 
Our combined invention seems to take him out of his Emperor-self. He is for a while the poet-scholar-sage he imagines he would like to be, and I his foot-sore companion following his wilderness journey. And then we turn our attention to our bodies, and I surprise him with my admonitions to gentleness, to patience, to arousing my pleasure. After such poetry he is all pleasure, sensitive to the slightest touch, and I have my pleasure in knowing I can control this powerful man with words and the stroke of my fingertips rather than by delicate youthful beauty or the guile and perverse ingenuity of an ****** act. He is still learning to recognise the nature and particularness of my desires. I am not as his other women: who confuse pleasure with pain.
 
Thoughts of my mother. Without my dear father, dead ten years, she is a boat without a rudder sailing on a distant lake. She greets each day as a gift she must honour with good humour despite the pain of her limbs, the difficulty of walking, of sitting, of eating, even talking. Such is the hurt that governs her ageing. She has always understood that my position has forbidden marriage and children, though the latter might be a possibility I have not wished it and made it known to my Lord that it must not be. My mother remains in limbo, neither son or daughter seeking to further her lineage, she has returned to her sister’s home in the distant village of her birth, a thatched house of twenty rooms,
 
‘Elms and willows shading the eaves at the back,
and, in front,  peach and plum spread wide.
 
Villages lost across mist-haze distances,
Kitchen smoke drifting wide-open country,
 
Dogs bark deep among the back roads out here
And cockerels crow from mulberry treetops.
 
My esteemed colleague T’ao Ch’ien made this poetry. After a distinguished career in government service he returned to the life of a recluse-farmer on his family farm. Living alone in a three-roomed hut he lives out his life as a recluse and has endured considerable poverty. One poem I know tells of him begging for food. His world is fields-and-gardens in contrast to Hsieh Ling-yin who is rivers-and-mountains. Ch’ien’s commitment to the recluse life has brought forth words that confront death and the reality of human experience without delusion.
 
‘At home here in what lasts, I wait out life.’
 
Thus my mother waits out her life, frail, crumbling more with each turning year.
 
To live beyond the need to organise daily commitments due to others, to step out into my garden and only consider the dew glistening on the loropetalum. My mind is forever full of what is to be done, what must be completed, what has to be said to this visitor who will today come to my court at the Wu hour. Only at my desk does this incessant chattering in the mind cease, as I move my brush to shape a character, or as the needle enters the cloth, all is stilled, the world retreats; there is the inner silence I crave.
 
I long to see with my own eyes those scenes my mother painted for me with her words. I only know them in my mind’s eye having travelled so little these past fifteen years. I look out from this still dark room onto my small garden to see the morning gathering its light above the rooftops. My camellia bush is in flower though a thin frost covers the garden stones.
 
And so I must imagine how it might be, how I might live the recluse life. How much can I jettison? These fine clothes, this silken nightgown beneath the furs I wrap myself in against the early morning air. My maid is sleeping. Who will make my tea? Minister to me when I take to my bed? What would become of my cat, my books, the choice-haired brushes? Like T’ao Ch’ien could I leave the court wearing a single robe and with one bag over my shoulders? Could I walk for ten days into the mountains? I would disguise myself as a man perhaps. I am tall for a woman, and though my body flows in broad curves there are ways this might be assuaged, enough perhaps to survive unmolested on the road.
 
Such dreams! My Lord would see me returned within hours and send a servant to remain at my gate thereafter. I will compose a rhapsody about a concubine of standing, who has even occupied the purple chamber, but now seeks to relinquish her privileged life, who coverts the uncertainty of nature, who would endure pain and privation in a hut on some distant mountain, who will sleep on a mat on its earth floor. Perhaps this will excite my Lord, light a fire in his imagination. As though in preparation for this task I remove my furs, I loose the knot of my silk gown. Naked, I reach for an old under shift letting it fall around my still-slender body and imagine myself tying the lacings myself in the open air, imagine making my toilet alone as the sun appears from behind a distant mountain on a new day. My mind occupies itself with the tiny detail of living thus: bare feet on cold earth, a walk to nearby stream, the gathering of berries and mountain herbs, the making of fire, the washing of my few clothes, imagining. Imagining. To live alone will see every moment filled with the tasks of keeping alive. I will become in tune with my surroundings. I will take only what I need and rely on no one. Dreaming will end and reality will be the slug on my mat, the bone-chilling incessant mists of winter, the thorn in the foot, the wild winds of autumn. My hands will become stained and rough, my long limbs tanned and scratched, my delicate complexion freckled and wind-pocked, my hair tied roughly back. I will become an animal foraging on a dank hillside. Such thoughts fill me with deep longing and a ****** desire to be tzu-jan  - with what surrounds me, ablaze with ****** self.
 
It is not thought the custom of a woman to hold such desires. We are creatures of order and comfort. We do not live on the edge of things, but crave security and well-being. We learn to endure the privations of being at the behest of others. Husbands, children, lovers, our relatives take our bodies to them as places of comfort, rest and desire. We work at maintaining an ordered flow of existence. Whatever our station, mistress or servant we compliment, we keep things in order, whether that is the common hearth or the accounts of our husband’s court. Now my rhapsody begins:
 
A Rhapsody on a woman wishing to live as a recluse
 
As a lady of my Emperor’s court I am bound in service.
My court is not my own, I have the barest of means.
My rooms are full of gifts I am forced barter for bread.
Though the artefacts of my hands and mind
Are valued and widely renown,
Their commissioning is an expectation of my station,
With no direct reward attached.
To dress appropriately for my Lord’s convocations and assemblies
I am forced to negotiate with chamberlains and treasurers.
A bolt of silk, gold thread, the services of a needlewoman
Require formal entreaties and may lie dormant for weeks
Before acknowledgement and release.
 
I was chosen for my literary skills, my prestigious memory,
Not for my ****** beauty, though I have been called
‘Lady of the most gracious movement’ and
My speaking voice has clarity and is capable of many colours.
I sing, but plainly and without passion
Lest I interfere with the truth of music’s message.
 
Since I was a child in my father’s library
I have sought out the works of those whose words
Paint visions of a world that as a woman
I may never see, the world of the wilderness,
Of rivers and mountains,
Of fields and gardens.
Yet I am denied by my *** and my station
To experience passing amongst these wonders
Except as contrived imitations in the palace gardens.
 
Each day I struggle to tease from the small corner
Of my enclosed eye-space some enrichment
Some elemental thing to colour meaning:
To extend the bounds of my home
Across the walls of this palace
Into the world beyond.
 
I have let it be known that I welcome interviews
With officials from distant courts to hear of their journeying,
To gather word images if only at second-hand.
Only yesterday an emissary recounted
His travels to Stone Lake in the far South-West,
Beyond the gorges of the Yang-tze.
With his eyes I have seen the mountains of Suchan:
With his ears I have heard the oars crackling
Like shattering jade in the freezing water.
Images and sounds from a thousand miles
Of travel are extract from this man’s memory.
 
Such a sharing of experience leaves me
Excited but dismayed: that I shall never
Visit this vast expanse of water and hear
Its wild cranes sing from their floating nests
In the summer moonlight.
 
I seek to disappear into a distant landscape
Where the self and its constructions of the world may
Dissolve away until nothing remains but the no-mind.
My thoughts are full of the practicalities of journeying
Of an imagined location, that lonely place
Where I may be at one with myself.
Where I may delight in the everyday Way,
Myself among mist and vine, rock and cave.
Not this lady of many parts and purposes whose poems must
Speak of lives, sorrow and joy, pleasure and pain
Set amongst personal conflict and intrigue
That in containing these things, bring order to disorder;
Salve the conscience, bathe hurt, soothe sleight.
Nithin purple Apr 2014
Preface

When the broad mind has opened, to gaze the stars that shinning in the unfathomable skies and the glittering Nature, its flowers’ fragrances given to taste the wealthy realms of her, as well as Earth's mysteries—that I ever think of to feel and by my thoughts that spread so deep to try to work with things that sounds of ‛creative’. Here I the ‛moody soul’ started his first journey, leaving his home  a few years ago and his up-start was through Literature, Science and Arts and Fiction. Writings and paintings here I believed to be most powerful and that those more often need to convey by the Artist’s conscience and the intensity that gains moral knowledge and appreciation. Here the book has the pictorial paths of Quest and the wanderings, all by imagination’s boat, sails from the western Ideas and its enthusiastic flow. Some finds hope along and also hopelessness, God and Love vagabonding among these ink-stained pages.
Dreamt in the wandering world where no chains shall bind, from the dark veiled lands to the daring spark, no atoms that obscure the force calling light, to aim the glad precious moments of life, to embrace me with a silence and its whispering magic, where gate of hope’s always open to bliss, thundering words are always from roam, the nocturnal pleasure that I only know, and when all will run away as time—why I alone in the upward steps of solitude that caressing wild only wings?
If I met Life as a strange stage of different senses—and I only say you to enjoy the aggressive fruits of my invention. Here it is for all of you can read and evaluate.*


Nithin Purple


Acknowledgement
                                      
­*This book is dedicated to my parents of Love and support,
from where I got the powers to be inspired—to write and prove.

Special Thanks to Parisian Author and poet Roman Payne of
‛cultural book’ for supporting me as a writer of varying tastes.  Also Writer, Wilson B Sanchez of New York, who first gave suggestions  
and his valuable sparkling comments of self-improvable topics, which I always bother. Belated friend, poet and writer, Curtis Plaskon from France for his valuable support. Also Poet Timothy & Hilda from Virginia, to them I had good writing memories. And for all the Indians, this book is an open heart to read.
Aknowledgement For My book 'Halycon Wings'
Helen Sep 2014
Hey guys

I have found several Daily Poems from this site being shared externally with no acknowledgement to the rightful owner :(

Head over here....

http://thepoetryden.wordpress.com/author/thepoetryden/

and if you find your original work there then I highly encourage you ask this person to either a) link the poem back to your original or b) remove them from his site. He claims to be a poet and is misleading people by not putting original names/original links to the works he is posting!

Go through them carefully as the titles of the poems have been changed.

Please share this because I have read at least 3 poems from this site from 3 different people over there with no acknowledgement to the original author!

Update ~ Sept 6th 2014 ~ You are NOT going to believe this. I found Shane Linville on Facebook and you will never guess who is one of his favourites! Chris G Vaillancourt! That's right, the very same well known plagiarist from days gone by at HP. He was such an insidious piece of work

*******! Not the way I'd like to see my name next to a Daily Poem but getting the awareness out there is a nice thing too :)
Update... To those listed below with stolen poetry who can't access the link to the blog because its been made private you can still contact word press to advise them and they can check the blog to make sure it's been removed. His name is Shane Linville! I'm just sorry I didn't have time to go through everything he had posted :(
The link above contains the following stolen poetry (that I know so far)
Indifference by Purple Orchid is posted as Her Soul
The Bells of Civilizations Ring by Sjr1000 is posted as World of Disease
Morning Light by Silas is posted as Morning Light (no name change but no link to the original)
I am Stone by imadeitallup (no name change but no link to the original)
A Fool for You by MYstro mAdden posted as Your Love
These a just a few... If you know any of the above poets... please share with them
Scott M Reamer Apr 2013
Man life know just set eyes way like young world soul day hunger space mouth earth thoughts ignorance blind things mind knew final moment human creation kind creatures souls high forgotten dream love spoke self existence face holy deep bound think home void say surrender ear forever called held ephemeral red state end shall heed hope edge living waking fall sea wake garden need February thought past wanderer got men page colored tepid terrible **** proudly untitled features point painted faceless box forgot render wild spring splendor  handfuls looking half brain lost torn ancestral  unseen vision inner summer honor mister owned banner save today fear groans wasn't smoke  street fable strange year contrast black years  able pain body spoken word known motion  palpitate reeling nature culture disclaimers  cancer beg attentive frames ****** base profound double remember wholly finger death token  cries continue folk oh fishing form broken true  divides spread ah twas away breathe wait warning hallowed wish closer lens turn eye live  constant current author hung theory dangle  bramble chemical new force changes adderall  anymore giving beneath possess pardon commentaries eternity internal walk reason  long change does idea glimpse consciousness  wandering simply wonder physical dreams war  sleep told rest benign prior begging truth little  2012 born tale crow bowels allegory animal rule  exasperate making horse curse hands ones read  rearrange capture doing command fail awake  aperture seedlings shift steely sir nap spead ****** demons slits clever telling loud spits la-la-di-dah killing slip game reflected nameless ask  lovers rabid bear salivate plunder shameless  famously savior mint rides menthol bully fate traded melodies play misunderstand mammals gentle witless fine utterly savage silt tongue-less  dirt dilutes pure non-sensory taste briefly ravage dismember it''ll shedding ruined curtain  knots offers plot fulfills munificent two-act  relegates boxz bug altruistic wintergreen tossing  callously guise grovels one's singers treachery ashes mid-life mutter fashion parading  ambiguity separatist liars staple steeping neath  guidelines scoffing stitch moans civil wrote  Fictitious undoing fables table effigies serve  sonnets staged remark psalm swoll praise harken  beggar verse bread lines heavily electricity detection snow sack-happy preaching credit  spotted wicked best gravity gun campaign owe  barge choir revelry celebratory satiated sinking  headline pack hound persistently propaganda  gentlemen excluding diminished ******* run idles  occupied levies wolfishly honestly misinformation cuba vehemently dumb grace spectator erasing  toned sage crowded secrets inter-connectivity  loaned prayer hymns grave mistaken magnified  vandals selective jump leak escapes says minister  buckle mass honesty shut tar children's hats  monument doping long-lived electrical ladle  exaggerated cartoons address seconds cool cradle bleak yang's mind-framed hypnotic  walker caps folly treble claim streaks mixtures  swelled interstate elapse teasing spoon mobile  succulent witchcraft borderline fatal 99 temple stacks sups plastics creeps neurotic ills tossed  meek sipping old crack interlock wax alleyway  coughing blown freak clock birthdays societies  slow flashing viscous candy argument toothless  pills cerebral rapt wall bisect lives wheezing  photo kid starter foiled pair saturated self-castrating pre-packed naked uncertainly pill  used came chaos coated reprisal fells wrack  irreverent mirth sickly disinherited proudest  collate wheeze appearance palette disharmony  discontented bastardized emotive bio inhale diction beat spoiled reclamation loudest tempo  totally disembodied matte imperfect shells flat  struck sounding imparts flak origin severance remarked bone walls snared leaflets mocking  hot scripting adjective noun agape seemingly  resistant gawk calamity passage paintings wind  trashcans signings sits cheap makers poetry persist scrap slipping individual talk wonders  leaving questions fold actor fancy parchment  fates engenders flown jaws stripped longer music  sacrifice fakers book boldly frown sigh atop patient hang trade occupation blows spectacular  whispers worthy backward waving certainty danced suppose needn't ‘drawkcab’ second-guessing  boys forget marched motto heads tightly lies two-tone earthbound harp twice turns goodnight  lying ***** internally indiscriminate nickname  drunk convictions myth steep  in-consumption  fitting artist **** universal sick expressions bad  du spell melody big siphon proud learn sprawls song spastic something temperaments utter check  fissures stomp totality blend definitely thrall sing rug voice shade pestilence ties commiserate round devil steady brains emotional certain gate  suckling gates dearth decay weight bounce pound  carrier pangs glass startle contest earthen web  tug pressed air patience flush amassed guest gone apprehension staring empathize captain believe fading in-perceivable deathbed guarder makes surrounds scatter drooling ebb blink cob tome  venom near door lair derision draws host stairs scent parts curiosities spider webbing surprise wares tips stepping ascetics starkness realize picture surroundings dictations grand pillars  deaf limited comparisons greet visual residents  personal settings dismiss alien law stability common earthly shiftless places prelude  understanding mosaic keen trifling embodiments  geared inception whisper visible jowls kiss murky  puddle rank dawn dichotomy single faithful fraying pays tailor veil climb mores pence whim  breath wellspring samara god stony pear  shadows fruiting forebodes moonlit looming  shown passed bog gold wracked faint tongues  noble preachers mirror shifting layered depth  threads jungle narcissus bemused seamstress self-worshiping architect's wore slumber anomalous  opened barren seam lip caustic scene coupled brick gardener's clenches -with forms idle breed  embodied lore starving empathy design illusion  tree coat fabricate lucid mason scatter-all  narrative seeking imbued 16th shivering chemicals 17th 15thrisk improperly dare  deliberate plan purge try brought chapter speed  aide utmost spirit leading intervention felt  recall recent advent sincerity times diary  lackluster piously lasting happy holding hear  stem tasteless whimpers wet spine monstrosity  dripping causes position quite softly claws pallet  answer digging tearing beast satiating circle breaks skips redwoods beckoning rotted hushed  gray lapsing monoliths deities creborus  imbuement hand stroll paradigm rendered chorus shy whispering forest residual tension  surrenders tolerance lull anew sentenced  bearing tide birds dirge divergent rim joined  cogs wood hesitant mist emergent towering offer  awareness confinement inverted faultier stowed  plane sanctified blanketing trusting memory fossil flash twists laden self-indulgent fleeting invitation agony grip shore impetus lingering  crows promise gift union swallowing endless floor supposed ecstasy sensory intent  psychotropic cradling placement interned  jagged connectivity exchange congenial begun  summons singular spiral assumes ambient reciprocates re-entry fruition reached aggregate lifetime limbs birthed instinct  frightening tarry proper entire light  boundaries innocence pursuit ago discover left  youth's unknowing sacred time place meager  simple fact cast ceaseless wide-eyed literal  apparent coincidence create boldness morphed  crooked kempt mere stumble buried shutter fairy  pivotal definitive months worth shear ambition sound required journeyed self-reflections title  facets vague restless intimation gut wanderer's  leap motivate path account boy soon bears faith  question tripped reasons uproot awaited confronted days step heal provocations wisps crushing transcend chronicles instance  directness raw drove occurrence objective-less  real enters slightest confident nondescript  typify  foreshortened interment paradox bitter heart  devoid jeopardy angry sensation confidential guilty arrogance mercy compliance reprieve  vincent deadening factual sign emotion awe  inhibition shackled butterflies absence actual sciences acknowledgement violent stagnant  spiritual American doors roots lack matted fore  gestures society cause streams intensity hair impossible discord lonely hearts resounding  jest  what's flavored pains closed toxic contented  happenstance scientific knowledge yeah  wizardry shaking stifled withdrawn bloom  jitter dreads settle asocial hulton make  predisposed figurative reflections demeanors  wondered affect hulton's projected sense  morning industry arrays ghosts feeling  certainly endomorphic where's partially wrath  passer mornings jovial unease advertized asking  trash onward wished tempers media mentality connect pasts sharp-toothed scramble great colours trial test salvation continually lent  degree secretly subjection social waned  disconnected colors grimly intellectual civilization cash trading baffling particular  digest myths monumental ending seasons winter  repetition introducing agent everlasting  shoulders delivered honestly-- possession funny  continence history unsightly function suffering propulsion profession divulge familiar tugs era  importance capability perpetuation spite inventory words entirety leveling fray insight  date record continues writer getting evermore fellow tongue possessions identical proof accuracy education similar sack admittance  favor unravel conveyance guilt gives beginnings  predicting audacity definition bobby heady eaters frameless learned release stone grandeur sang  speak molds sleeps split built seats people folded  sheer pour evoked playhouse liquid boring  tellers frayed stark walked reality pleas doth  preformed shows beak pride squawks opinions  greatest bold stunning sightings he'd loudly slain  sunk watch legend precipice theater deeper compound commentator civility justly silly sin  reverent seen prophetic moral confounds notion  lacking explain attempt prolific viral estrange proclivity scorn hide blur pious strung eden's  horror cut skin arch cruel twig mother vile  pass lend woods peach shrunken trail man's canopy worn 434 eat warm limb familiar father delete.

You are what your reading lady. Now would you hold this gun?
J R Cramer Nov 2018
I remember sitting
On the tiny porch
Of my dad’s home
Offended by the sun
That continued to sink and set
Without pausing to acknowledge
My dad’s passing.
Offended by the cars
That continued on the highway;
Callous indifference, it seemed to me.
Even the birds at their feeder
Greedily fed and failed to look up
To mark the loss of their benefactor.

I found myself
Silently demanding condolences
In every encounter.
Not for the sympathy,
Or worse, pity,
But for the acknowledgement
That he was here
And now he’s gone,
And something,
However infinitesimally small
In the scopeless universe,
Has changed.

I have two cousins.
The first called my dad
Every month.
His regular call came
During the last days.
The decline surprised him.
He took a deep breath
And asked for speakerphone
Near my dad.
He told my dad
How much my dad had
Influenced his life;
How as a child,
he anticipated a visit from my dad
Like kids stay up to see Santa;
How my dad made my cousin feel
Like he was the most important kid
In the wide world;

How my dad gave my cousin
The otherwise unavailable
Sustenance of heart
Young boys need;
How my cousin had strived to be
Like my dad
And how he hoped
His own children see in him
What he saw in my dad.

That was acknowledgement,
Profound acknowledgement.

My second cousin called
Shortly after the first.
He had heard
That my dad was dying.
He did not ask
To speak with my dad.
He wanted to tell me
To call him
As soon as memorial
Arrangements were made
So that he could purchase
Discounted airline tickets,
To include a subsequent visit
To his son who lives
In the southern part of the state.

My dad was still living.

That, too, acknowledged something,
And served to impel my pending decision.
So I opted for
A less conventional
Memorial ritual
That required neither
Plane tickets nor attendance
Nor a frozen smile reception.

I would not suffer
Insincere acknowledgement.

I am sure I scandalized
Many acquaintances of my dad
Who enjoyed the social conventions of
The anticipated gathering
If only to point out the deficiencies
Of the event and the host.

I am sure I offended
And frustrated
And embittered
One of my cousins.

The other cousin thought
My dad would have preferred
Sincerity
Over a pantomime.

I would suffer
The disfavor and distaste
Of the discontented
With no difficulty.
David Barr Mar 2014
Truth bares the deepest recesses of her concealed modesties.
Can you feel the resonating equilibrium of tantric sound as we connect across humanitarian divides?
Tears fill my eyes, as I bask in the presence of such elevated humility.
I am grateful for the wisdom of simplicity, as opposed to what may be deemed to be stupidity.
Let us join hands around this circle of cultic agreement.
IN SEARCH OF THE PRESENT

I begin with two words that all men have uttered since the dawn of humanity: thank you. The word gratitude has equivalents in every language and in each tongue the range of meanings is abundant. In the Romance languages this breadth spans the spiritual and the physical, from the divine grace conceded to men to save them from error and death, to the ****** grace of the dancing girl or the feline leaping through the undergrowth. Grace means pardon, forgiveness, favour, benefice, inspiration; it is a form of address, a pleasing style of speaking or painting, a gesture expressing politeness, and, in short, an act that reveals spiritual goodness. Grace is gratuitous; it is a gift. The person who receives it, the favoured one, is grateful for it; if he is not base, he expresses gratitude. That is what I am doing at this very moment with these weightless words. I hope my emotion compensates their weightlessness. If each of my words were a drop of water, you would see through them and glimpse what I feel: gratitude, acknowledgement. And also an indefinable mixture of fear, respect and surprise at finding myself here before you, in this place which is the home of both Swedish learning and world literature.

Languages are vast realities that transcend those political and historical entities we call nations. The European languages we speak in the Americas illustrate this. The special position of our literatures when compared to those of England, Spain, Portugal and France depends precisely on this fundamental fact: they are literatures written in transplanted tongues. Languages are born and grow from the native soil, nourished by a common history. The European languages were rooted out from their native soil and their own tradition, and then planted in an unknown and unnamed world: they took root in the new lands and, as they grew within the societies of America, they were transformed. They are the same plant yet also a different plant. Our literatures did not passively accept the changing fortunes of the transplanted languages: they participated in the process and even accelerated it. They very soon ceased to be mere transatlantic reflections: at times they have been the negation of the literatures of Europe; more often, they have been a reply.

In spite of these oscillations the link has never been broken. My classics are those of my language and I consider myself to be a descendant of Lope and Quevedo, as any Spanish writer would ... yet I am not a Spaniard. I think that most writers of Spanish America, as well as those from the United States, Brazil and Canada, would say the same as regards the English, Portuguese and French traditions. To understand more clearly the special position of writers in the Americas, we should think of the dialogue maintained by Japanese, Chinese or Arabic writers with the different literatures of Europe. It is a dialogue that cuts across multiple languages and civilizations. Our dialogue, on the other hand, takes place within the same language. We are Europeans yet we are not Europeans. What are we then? It is difficult to define what we are, but our works speak for us.

In the field of literature, the great novelty of the present century has been the appearance of the American literatures. The first to appear was that of the English-speaking part and then, in the second half of the 20th Century, that of Latin America in its two great branches: Spanish America and Brazil. Although they are very different, these three literatures have one common feature: the conflict, which is more ideological than literary, between the cosmopolitan and nativist tendencies, between Europeanism and Americanism. What is the legacy of this dispute? The polemics have disappeared; what remain are the works. Apart from this general resemblance, the differences between the three literatures are multiple and profound. One of them belongs more to history than to literature: the development of Anglo-American literature coincides with the rise of the United States as a world power whereas the rise of our literature coincides with the political and social misfortunes and upheavals of our nations. This proves once more the limitations of social and historical determinism: the decline of empires and social disturbances sometimes coincide with moments of artistic and literary splendour. Li-Po and Tu Fu witnessed the fall of the Tang dynasty; Velázquez painted for Felipe IV; Seneca and Lucan were contemporaries and also victims of Nero. Other differences are of a literary nature and apply more to particular works than to the character of each literature. But can we say that literatures have a character? Do they possess a set of shared features that distinguish them from other literatures? I doubt it. A literature is not defined by some fanciful, intangible character; it is a society of unique works united by relations of opposition and affinity.

The first basic difference between Latin-American and Anglo-American literature lies in the diversity of their origins. Both begin as projections of Europe. The projection of an island in the case of North America; that of a peninsula in our case. Two regions that are geographically, historically and culturally eccentric. The origins of North America are in England and the Reformation; ours are in Spain, Portugal and the Counter-Reformation. For the case of Spanish America I should briefly mention what distinguishes Spain from other European countries, giving it a particularly original historical identity. Spain is no less eccentric than England but its eccentricity is of a different kind. The eccentricity of the English is insular and is characterized by isolation: an eccentricity that excludes. Hispanic eccentricity is peninsular and consists of the coexistence of different civilizations and different pasts: an inclusive eccentricity. In what would later be Catholic Spain, the Visigoths professed the heresy of Arianism, and we could also speak about the centuries of ******* by Arabic civilization, the influence of Jewish thought, the Reconquest, and other characteristic features.

Hispanic eccentricity is reproduced and multiplied in America, especially in those countries such as Mexico and Peru, where ancient and splendid civilizations had existed. In Mexico, the Spaniards encountered history as well as geography. That history is still alive: it is a present rather than a past. The temples and gods of pre-Columbian Mexico are a pile of ruins, but the spirit that breathed life into that world has not disappeared; it speaks to us in the hermetic language of myth, legend, forms of social coexistence, popular art, customs. Being a Mexican writer means listening to the voice of that present, that presence. Listening to it, speaking with it, deciphering it: expressing it ... After this brief digression we may be able to perceive the peculiar relation that simultaneously binds us to and separates us from the European tradition.

This consciousness of being separate is a constant feature of our spiritual history. Separation is sometimes experienced as a wound that marks an internal division, an anguished awareness that invites self-examination; at other times it appears as a challenge, a spur that incites us to action, to go forth and encounter others and the outside world. It is true that the feeling of separation is universal and not peculiar to Spanish Americans. It is born at the very moment of our birth: as we are wrenched from the Whole we fall into an alien land. This experience becomes a wound that never heals. It is the unfathomable depth of every man; all our ventures and exploits, all our acts and dreams, are bridges designed to overcome the separation and reunite us with the world and our fellow-beings. Each man's life and the collective history of mankind can thus be seen as attempts to reconstruct the original situation. An unfinished and endless cure for our divided condition. But it is not my intention to provide yet another description of this feeling. I am simply stressing the fact that for us this existential condition expresses itself in historical terms. It thus becomes an awareness of our history. How and when does this feeling appear and how is it transformed into consciousness? The reply to this double-edged question can be given in the form of a theory or a personal testimony. I prefer the latter: there are many theories and none is entirely convincing.

The feeling of separation is bound up with the oldest and vaguest of my memories: the first cry, the first scare. Like every child I built emotional bridges in the imagination to link me to the world and to other people. I lived in a town on the outskirts of Mexico City, in an old dilapidated house that had a jungle-like garden and a great room full of books. First games and first lessons. The garden soon became the centre of my world; the library, an enchanted cave. I used to read and play with my cousins and schoolmates. There was a fig tree, temple of vegetation, four pine trees, three ash trees, a nightshade, a pomegranate tree, wild grass and prickly plants that produced purple grazes. Adobe walls. Time was elastic; space was a spinning wheel. All time, past or future, real or imaginary, was pure presence. Space transformed itself ceaselessly. The beyond was here, all was here: a valley, a mountain, a distant country, the neighbours' patio. Books with pictures, especially history books, eagerly leafed through, supplied images of deserts and jungles, palaces and hovels, warriors and princesses, beggars and kings. We were shipwrecked with Sinbad and with Robinson, we fought with d'Artagnan, we took Valencia with the Cid. How I would have liked to stay forever on the Isle of Calypso! In summer the green branches of the fig tree would sway like the sails of a caravel or a pirate ship. High up on the mast, swept by the wind, I could make out islands and continents, lands that vanished as soon as they became tangible. The world was limitless yet it was always within reach; time was a pliable substance that weaved an unbroken present.

When was the spell broken? Gradually rather than suddenly. It is hard to accept being betrayed by a friend, deceived by the woman we love, or that the idea of freedom is the mask of a tyrant. What we call "finding out" is a slow and tricky process because we ourselves are the accomplices of our errors and deceptions. Nevertheless, I can remember fairly clearly an incident that was the first sign, although it was quickly forgotten. I must have been about six when one of my cousins who was a little older showed me a North American magazine with a photograph of soldiers marching along a huge avenue, probably in New York. "They've returned from the war" she said. This handful of words disturbed me, as if they foreshadowed the end of the world or the Second Coming of Christ. I vaguely knew that somewhere far away a war had ended a few years earlier and that the soldiers were marching to celebrate their victory. For me, that war had taken place in another time, not here and now. The photo refuted me. I felt literally dislodged from the present.

From that moment time began to fracture more and more. And there was a plurality of spaces. The experience repeated itself more and more frequently. Any piece of news, a harmless phrase, the headline in a newspaper: everything proved the outside world's existence and my own unreality. I felt that the world was splitting and that I did not inhabit the present. My present was disintegrating: real time was somewhere else. My time, the time of the garden, the fig tree, the games with friends, the drowsiness among the plants at three in the afternoon under the sun, a fig torn open (black and red like a live coal but one that is sweet and fresh): this was a fictitious time. In spite of what my senses told me, the time from over there, belonging to the others, was the real one, the time of the real present. I accepted the inevitable: I became an adult. That was how my expulsion from the present began.

It may seem paradoxical to say that we have been expelled from the present, but it is a feeling we have all had at some moment. Some of us experienced it first as a condemnation, later transformed into consciousness and action. The search for the present is neither the pursuit of an earthly paradise nor that of a timeless eternity: it is the search for a real reality. For us, as Spanish Americans, the real present was not in our own countries: it was the time lived by others, by the English, the French and the Germans. It was the time of New York, Paris, London. We had to go and look for it and bring it back home. These years were also the years of my discovery of literature. I began writing poems. I did not know what made me write them: I was moved by an inner need that is difficult to define. Only now have I understood that there was a secret relationship between what I have called my expulsion from the present and the writing of poetry. Poetry is in love with the instant and seeks to relive it in the poem, thus separating it from sequential time and turning it into a fixed present. But at that time I wrote without wondering why I was doing it. I was searching for the gateway to the present: I wanted to belong to my time and to my century. A little later this obsession became a fixed idea: I wanted to be a modern poet. My search for modernity had begun.

What is modernity? First of all it is an ambiguous term: there are as many types of modernity as there are societies. Each has its own. The word's meaning is uncertain and arbitrary, like the name of the period that precedes it, the Middle Ages. If we are modern when compared to medieval times, are we perhaps the Middle Ages of a future modernity? Is a name that changes with time a real name? Modernity is a word in search of its meaning. Is it an idea, a mirage or a moment of history? Are we the children of modernity or its creators? Nobody knows for sure. It doesn't matter much: we follow it, we pursue it. For me at that time modernity was fused with the present or rather produced it: the present was its last supreme flower. My case is neither unique nor exceptional: from the Symbolist period, all modern poets have chased after that magnetic and elusive figure that fascinates them. Baudelaire was the first. He was also the first to touch her and discover that she is nothing but time that crumbles in one's hands. I am not going to relate my adventures in pursuit of modernity: they are not very different from those of other 20th-Century poets. Modernity has been a universal passion. Since 1850 she has been our goddess and our demoness. In recent years, there has been an attempt to exorcise her and there has been much talk of "postmodernism". But what is postmodernism if not an even more modern modernity?

For us, as Latin Americans, the search for poetic modernity runs historically parallel to the repeated attempts to modernize our countries. This tendency begins at the end of the 18th Century and includes Spain herself. The United States was born into modernity and by 1830 was already, as de Tocqueville observed, the womb of the future; we were born at a moment when Spain and Portugal were moving away from modernity. This is why there was frequent talk of "Europeanizing" our countries: the modern was outside and had to be imported. In Mexican history this process begins just before the War of Independence. Later it became a great ideological and political debate that passionately divided Mexican society during the 19th Century. One event was to call into question not the legitimacy of the reform movement but the way in which it had been implemented: the Mexican Revolution. Unlike its 20th-Century counterparts, the Mexican Revolution was not really the expression of a vaguely utopian ideology but rather the explosion of a reality that had been historically and psychologically repressed. It was not the work of a group of ideologists intent on introducing principles derived from a political theory; it was a popular uprising that unmasked what was hidden. For this very reason it was more of a revelation than a revolution. Mexico was searching for the present outside only to find it within, buried but alive. The search for modernity led
Yule Jun 2018
The sound of the pouring rain from the roof woke me up.

I got myself a chair in the patio of our house. I sat there comfortably, sitting in silence for a good whole minute.

I closed my eyes, letting the sound of the pouring rain immerse into me. Imagining myself getting soaked, as if I really am in the middle of the pouring rain, drenched, and laughing carefree in the distance.

"Being outside is nice huh?" I heard a pleasant voice behind me. I let my eyes stay closed for a moment, letting the cold wind meet my face to wake me up. I also welcomed his words, nodding at him with acknowledgement. I was then met with a chocolatey steam; he prepared us two cups of hot cocoa.

"Figured you're a bit cold." His voice sounded raspy, sleepiness still evident in his tone. I turn to him as he got himself another chair close to mine. He looks up a bit, seeping the rain onto his porcelain-like skin. He doesn't go out that much to get some sunshine as to why.

I hummed absentmindedly, warming up to his presence. There was a small smile across his lips, his eyes warmer than the hot drinks he have at hand.

I mirrored his smile, getting my cup from him.

"I kinda like the cold feeling but I wouldn't want to waste your effort." A chuckle escaped my lips, and his crescent-like smile appeared before me.

He drank from his cup as I sipped on mine, letting the vibe from around me flood my senses.

I love these little instances he would think of me. Slipping a thought into his tasks, gestures that show that he does take effort in remembering things I love. Like how I prefer hot chocolate over tea in rainy days, and how I love seeing his smile on early mornings. Even as he loathes waking up and moving off the bed so early. Oh how I love this man before me.

And we sat there in silence, side by side, letting the sky pour out its rain. Our cups at hand, the aroma of the cocoa steam over our senses, full to little to none, with the cold wind howling a bit in the distance.

This went on for an hour or so; I still couldn’t wrap around the idea of how much I love these instances. I had always found comfort in him between our silences and exchanges of glances. Just in him in general; he’s my blanket, my safety— the personification of home. My umbrella; my shade to my blazing sunny days and cover to cold rainy days. I looked over his broad figure from the back, I sigh in contentment.

And as if he heard the drizzle in my heart, he gave me a faint smile; a radiance just enough to soften the hues all around us. But just enough that he stands out amongst the drizzling rain over the sunlight peeking through the clouds.

I could see the raindrops wash over the dewiness of his skin, and it looks like it's starting to show signs of stopping. But I just want to stay, stay out here a bit longer.
The rain is still pouring hard outside.| 180609; 9:23 am

//  If I were asked what paradise would look like. This would be it.

{nj.b}
Àŧùl Jan 2016
To thank each one of you,
Today, I take the opportunity,
By taking names for your support.

For being the source,
First of all, I thank Life,
For the inspiration she was.

She guided me to Hello Poetry,
Introduced me to new friends,
Broke up ultimately however.

Then I thank Timothy Salter,
For his own and his family's,
Articulate poetry helped me.

Madam Hilda writes as amazing,
And as amazing is their daughter,
It is hard to tell if Marian wrote it.

It's helping me learn more,
Respecting it has taught me,
Had to be paid to earn more.

Not forgetting Gitacharya Vedala,
For he elaborates on every detail,
Thereby helping me experiment.

Same is for Pradip Chattopadhyay,
Hinting of Rabindranath Tagore,
He's the poet clad in sombrero.

Their pure physics at soul poetry,
Helped me learn experimenting,
With sheer hollow truthfulness

I then engage in remembering,
Elsa Angelica for inspiring me,
Her own poetry is developing.

She inspired me to improve,
My strengths & weaknesses,
She taught me being lucid.

Then of course I thank Sukeerti,
She taught me being beautiful,
Without being too explaining.

She encouraged my writing,
Always was their as a friend,
Giving me her positive inputs.

Madam Elizabeth 'Lizzie' Squires,
Aptly mature her poetry is always,
Very much to learn always exists.

Her persona is respectable,
Definitely motherly her aura,
Making her a poet so reputable.

Several other poets fascinate me,
Equally instead of less or more,
They all teach me the lessons.

Madam Sally A Bayan is there,
Her sweet mature bits of advice,
Best complemented by her poetry.

Shayana Shrikanthalingam,
Seeing all her polished poetry,
Not such a difficult name for me.

Ever inseparable they are,
Brandon & Earl Jane Nagley,
They are the immortal lovers.

And I recognize the beauty,
An Indian model here on H.P.,
Poetry surely as cute as herself.

She is the most elegant girl,
On Hello Poetry and in reality,
Bhumika Fulwani I refer to here.

Finally, I express my gratitude to her,
In my life she's the ultimate one,
Now I needn't anyone else.

She is my Pooja Shah,
She is exclusively mine,
She is here forever to stay.
I have a very poor memory.
I might have missed some names.
So please forgive me if I have forgotten you.

But I assure you that I have full respect for you.

My HP Poem #992
©Atul Kaushal
Styles Jun 2014
If you are pushing a heavy ball up hill, without any type or recognition, acknowledgement, or appreciation; then stop. Because one day, when that heavy burden rolls back on you, it won't even be worth it. Life is too short.
jeffrey conyers Nov 2012
Why hide my feelings?
When they are real concerning you.
I take out an advertisement.
If I had too.
I go the whole public achnowledgement route.
If I had too.

Don't me surprised to see your name in the air.
Behind a plane in flight.
Or along side of a taxi-cab.

It will be to the point.
That if you don't see my public acknowledgement.
You would think I didn't care.

In every presidential speech.
You'll be slightly mention.
This just , how much I care?

Even the Prime Minister of Enland would be involved.
I'm going to public acknowledge your love.
Get use to it.
Take heed to it.
Believe it too.
I'm telling anyone and everyone, I love you so.
Jacob Apr 2014
The girl with purple hair is sitting at my bar again.
I think she is beautiful. And not in a way that I wanna have awesome *** with her but in a way that I want to drink chocolate martinis with her
and go shopping for christmas vests that have tinkly bells and possibly polar bears with hats on them.
She is having a full-body cry. I am the worst bartender, simply
because I don't know how to counsel people without crying back at them.
She is crying about the state of women.

I know that we come from the same rotting wood, so all I do is nod.

"How is it that three quarters of the women I know have been ***** or molested?
What does that say about the men that I know?
**** is not a man behind a bush with a knife, she laughs
It's kissing you on the mouth like whiskey at a nice bar."
The girl with purple hair and I are holding hands now,
"I only wanted an apology,
an acknowledgement of what occurred."
Grappling as artists, as girls, as ships in bottles,
how do we change any of it?
I tell her I am going to write a poem.
She says no one wants to hear a **** poem.

And I know she's right.

Have you ever seen a stampede of horses?
Do you wonder what the hooves look like from underneath?
Have you ever tasted the blood from biting your own lips because you couldn't say no enough?
"I never fought back. I kept my thighs tight and
closed, but once he's inside you, you wish you were the streetlamp, the
store clerk, a street lamp, a bed of calla lilies-

anything but a woman.

In that moment, our eyes glaze over, and they stay that way for years.
That's when you've lost.
A poem by Mary Lambert, from the poem-book, "500 Tips for Fat Girls"
Sachin Subedi Dec 2018
One with sensation
One with feeling
One with conscience
One with tears
The cry soars to the horizon
They are killing
They are slaughtering
They are breeding
They are feeding

They need the flesh
To digest into ****
The cruelty within
The merciless beyond
The ignorance under
The indulgence upon
The assassin
The mass ******
Slaughter and evil
A call of an animal
A call of a voiceless
But a denial
A denial of the human race
Slaughter for an idea
A pitiful act
Denial of existence

Today I am going vegan
Dripped in emotion
Dripped in sensation
Dripped in acknowledgement
Dripped in the knowing
The knowing of evolution
The evolution of life
Of the voiceless
The voiceless with life
The mercy to be shown
But merciless around
The acknowledgement within
Today i am going vegan

Vegan I am
For the voice of the voiceless
The nature of existence
For the truth of the tears
The cry and the pain
The cruelty for an idea
For the civilization of the civilized
For the life as a gift it is
For respect of life
The life only, within and beyond
From now on
I am a vegan

The love for life
The truth of the divine
The truth of nature
The intelligence of human
The sensation and sight
The pain and cry
The idea to breed
The idea to ****
The idea to feed
Disrespect of nature
The ignorance
To crawl over and over
The idea of indulsion
The idea of false victory
The idea of superiority
The idea of amusement
The idea of carnival
The idea of the not alive
But idea of the dead

The alive if one
Ought to respect life itself
Turn the fire of warmth
Find the well being
With the sense of compassion
For sure fill the belly
And only with leafy greens
Yes yes yes
Nature made us as plant eaters

Think and acknowledge for yourselves
Our body is not that of a carnivore
We are not natural meat eaters
Don't have teeth of carnivore
Don't have digestion as a carnivore
A body for the plant based diet
So its natural and without a glitch
To eat leafy greens

Killing animals for an idea
Killing animals for the sake of food supply
Evil it is
Not a effort to manage food
No no no
It is a scam
Breeding animals
For the sole purpose
Of killing for feeding
Feeding the indulging ones
Feeding for amusement
Feeding for anything more than survival
Except the sole purpose
Of survival and existence
Is an evil in itself

Realized now
Realized yesterday
Realized to the haze
And through maze to eternity
Realization strikes
A light bolt
The light fills the dark
Awaken
Illuminate
Realization
Wow
Vegan now on
The vulnerability of baring myself fully
clenches the belly
panics the heart
stands my hairs on end.

It is truly the most terrifying thing
to stand in ones authenticity.

And yet. And yet.

The courage it takes.
The great tender strength.
The spine tingling elation.
The heart swells, and magic.
The naked beauty borne, in feeling you have nothing to hide.
The spirit touched ardor of a bare approach to life.
The openings and the mystery.
The expressions: tripping, falling, incomplete, misguided.
The wonderful mistakes, elucidating lessons.
The perfect imperfections.
The easing of honesty.
The engendered humility.
The profundity.
The sense of being touched, touching, and in touch with life.
The unmasked revelations, of full spectral undulation.
The this. The that. The I can accept it all.
The dropping of shame.
The incredible liberation, in shedding that shame.
The finding forgiveness for self, for other.
The quiver of unknowing.
The sweet caress of potential.
The dread. The sorrows. The uncertainties.
All making room for, in their acknowledgement:
Room for what else is there.
Room for laughter, and joy, and luminescence.
Room for flirtation, dancing, spontaneity.
Breaking open.
Melting into Love.
Soaring on the wings of Truth.
The hush, of anxious worry.
The Goodness bestowed.
The empathy.
The compassion.
The connection.
The holy restoration of creative flow.
The fires of real passion.

And everything.
And everything.
And Beauty.
Iris Nyx Jul 2014
Your acknowledgement, your praise
The words I've wanted to hear for years
The daydreams that put me in a daze
All the hate settled upon my mirrors

I understand that this is all owed to desperation
I understand you have never felt what I once did
And this very strange fixation
Is because; my insecurity you do rid

They may all be lies
Fibs to which I would never succumb
But, from the despair and fear, you've shielded my eyes
and I no longer feel numb

You have not healed me
I am far from this
But I feel free
From All the painful reminisce
Marcus Lane Mar 2011
A proud man,
Upright and unshakable
In belief and morals,
Once only I did I see him
Without a tie.

A child of Edwardian England,
The links Of his watch chain
Glinted
As they hung
With formality and elegance
From his waistcoat pocket,
Yes, even as he worked.

And work he did.
Patiently,
Brilliantly and tirelessly
With ingenuity and imagination.
A craftsman from a bygone age.
A master of his tools.

Grandfathers are soft,
Playful, bear-like in their
Gruff-whiskered familiarity.

Not Poppy.
Unwittingly aloof from his grandchildren,
We avoided the need for directly addressing him,
Unsure of where we stood.
He’d probably have secretly
Loved the informality
Of our secret nickname.
I hope he knew.

The chapel piano did for him.
Too much weight for his work-weary ticker.

Grandma gave me his pocket watch to keep,
And for a time I treasured it,
Measuring its weight
Like a smooth round pebble
In my palm.
A workman’s watch;
Practical.
A yellowing face
Behind a scratched
And hazy glass.
But accurate,
And precise.
Reliable as the man.

Detached in life,
I liked to hope that
Gazing down,
Watching,
He just might have
Laughed
In loving acknowledgement of his
Grandson’s curiosity
And foolishness
Sitting cross-legged on the carpet,
With heart-thumping nausea

Adrift in a sea of springs.
© Marcus Lane 2010
Nigel Morgan Nov 2012
A thousand peaks: no more birds in flight.
Ten thousand paths: all trace of people gone.

In a lone boat, rain cloak and hat of reeds.
An old man’s fishing the cold river snow.

I am alone in this mountain fastness, on a steep downward path in the deepest shadow. I play with the twelve characters of Lui Tsung-yaun’s poem. How few poems tell of the desolation of winter. The coming of Spring, the passing of Autumn? Yes. But the onset of Winter? Even my sharp memory only recalls a meagre handful of poems to this season: the time of the first snows. Against all good sense I set out from Stone Village too late in the year: now I search for comforting word images to accompany me on this journey. Just below the snowline I pass through a stunted forest of ancient walnut trees almost leafless; the unrelenting wind has dispatched them crinkled brown into the valley below. I see there a winding river. I see its distant lake. I think of this poem known since my teenage years, puzzled over that one could see in one sweep of the horizon a thousand peaks. Here are that thousand and more if the ranks of limestone pillars in these mountains can be counted as peaks. I count them as peaks. And those thousand paths? At every turn there is some fresh way falling into the valley, or a faint trail rising to the heights. But this path I tread asserts itself on the traveller. Its stones are worn and the excrement of passing pack animals sticks to my boots.

Last night a cave, tonight I will reach the village of Psnumako. My former guide provided its name with a disdain he could not hide. When questioned he warned me not to enter without a stout staff against the mastiffs that guard each house, supposedly ******* during the day but apt to break their bonds at the smell of a stranger.

The steep and ever steeper descent brings pain to my knees. At this hour of the day my body would prefer to climb to the heights, but descend I must. The cold, the damp cold begins to stiffen weary limbs. I am tired from a day’s travel, tired from three hard climbs, two descents and this, my third, to complete before nightfall. I enter a narrow gorge loud with clamour of running water, cascade upon cascade flowing from the heights, falling fast to the river soon to interrupt my path. I shall have to force a crossing. What passed for a bridge were two fallen pines lashed together.  Now they lie akimbo a little distant, thrown apart like sticks by the spring flood as the deep snows melt. I must divest myself of boots and lower garments and wade across, stumbling on stones up to my waist in swift waters, terrified under the weight of my pack that I will fall and be swept under and along. To travel alone at such moments is foolhardy, but on this cold afternoon I have no choice.

I am so intent on preparing for this crossing it is only when I reach the end of the path that I notice snow is falling, its flakes sharp and white against the dark-water flow. The whirl and turn of the water mesmerises. Fatigue, fatigue embraces me, a day’s fatigue holds me fast on the river’s stony side. I close my eyes and hear the water rush and place myself into the protection of a mountain charm learnt from a passing traveller. Dwarfed by the size of his burden I see him negotiate a narrow path high above a chasm; he walked trance-like to the intoning of this charm.

It is soon done, the cold crossing, and with a lighter step I walk the remaining leagues to the lake-side and sight of the village. There are the faintest sparks of light amongst the silhouettes of houses. Animals are being brought in from the home fields against the night. A sudden shout, the barking of dogs, and now the snow falls thick and fast.

The guttural dialect here is barely discernable as speech. We are from different worlds this shepherd and I who meet at the stupa guarding the village entrance. This is not a Buddhist shrine but an acknowledgement of some mountain giant of terrifying aspect. The shepherd sees my official insignia and nods, knowing I will require shelter. He utters what may be a welcome, but could be a warning, and leads me forth. The mastiffs leap and bay as I pass between the primitive two-storey houses, animals below, humankind above. He disappears. I stop and wait. He returns with a woman who beckons me to climb the ladder to what may be her home. A widow perhaps? She is alone unless the rank darkness hides a man or child. But there is none. I hear animals move and grunt under the floor, a mat of dirt and straw. There is a sleeping loft, a cooking corner. I can see little else. But I am out of the snow, the biting wind, the cold. She pulls at my cloak, wet and caked with ice. There is a bowl placed in my hands; a rough tea. I speak a greeting, but there is no reply just a rustle of straw as she moves across the room.

The stupor of a journey’s pause is upon me. After three days on the trail to the heights I am numb with fatigue. I need food and sleep. I need rest before a final trek into the wilderness. Beyond Psnumako Lake known paths end. Except for the tracks used by shepherds to move their flocks to different seasonal pastures, there is wilderness. I hope for guidance, for the whereabouts of the sages who, in the winter months I am told, leave their reed huts on the heights for caves in the lower valleys. I shall be patient, remain here a little while. I am now immune to the discomfort and dirt of travel. That is how it is. That is how is must be. I miss only the mental absorption of writing, the caress of the brush on a scroll. In my home in Louyang I keep brush and paper close to hand; wherever I may be I can write, even in, especially in, the privy. If a line comes to me I can write it down. Here there is only the comfort of memory.

To think that in the past I wrote of this mountain wilderness out of my imagination and the descriptions of others. I once thought of these remote places as havens of spiritual liberation.

In the hills there is the sound of zither.
White clouds stay over shaded peaks,
Red flowers shine in the sunlit woods
Rocks are washed in the stream like jade;

How very different is the reality of it all; in this emerging winter world of mist, where the sun rarely visits and most living things have departed, where wind colours silence and one’s footfall becomes consolation. The sound of stone rubbing stone on the path is the eternal present. There have been days when only a distant crow moves in the landscape. Lammergeyers are known in these parts, but I have yet to see one. If there are wild beasts, they shun me.

As this bowl of tea cools in my hands but warms my frozen fingers I form pictures of the past day on its dark surface. Before dawn from the mouth of a river cave I sensed changes in the qualities of darkness that have hidden the heights above me. Then a perceptible line appeared and divided the mountain from the sky. That line became variegated; there were trees bristling on the highest rocks. It appears that at this hour the prevalent mist settles in the valleys leaving the sky clear.

The woman comes to me. She kneels to untie my boots. She looks with a curious innocence at my strangeness, the distortion of my face, the cleft palette, the deformed upper lip, the squint of my left eye. She is kindly as I give her my best smile though my face seems frozen still. There is a whisper, a prayer of welcome possibly. Then she bows her head, unravels a long scarf to reveal a mane of oiled hair, and sets about removing my boots. I see only the top of her head, a severe parting, hair held tightly in wooden combs. I close my eyes to bring to mind the image of Xaoli, so slight in comparison, her butterfly hands flittering into and around my sleeves, her seeing touch mapping out the extent of me, each piece of clothing, only later my face.

My reverie is broken by the entrance of two men. They squat behind the woman and, after taking in my ugliness and my hairpins of office, patiently wait for her to finish and retire. We stand and bow, then sit again amongst the straw.

‘Honoured Lord, I am Yun. You have travelled from Stone Village? And beyond?’

I pass him the Emperor’s seal he cannot read, but remain silent.

‘You are seeking those who live in the heights? The village only sees their servants, young boys sent for a goat or flasks of barley spirit. They bring herbs our women favour. Some have seen their huts when seeking lost animals. Now it is said they are gathered in the caves like animals waiting for the spring moon.’

‘When was the village last visited by their kind?’

‘ Hanlu, my Lord, the time of cold dew, two boys appeared with a pony. There was trading. They brought Chrysanthemum flowers and herbs for two geese and wine. They left scrolls for passage to Stone Village. Now the snows fall we may not see them until the Spring’

‘How far are your summer pastures? Have you any who would guide me there ?’

‘We do not seek these places after the first snows. The sages haunt the region beyond Chang Mountain. Before the 11th moon you might pass into the valley of Lidong where it is believed their caves lie, but to return before the Spring will not be possible.’

‘How many days there?’

‘Allow four. A difficult way, unmarked, rarely trodden, much climbing. There is one here who we could send with you – part of the way, and at a price, My Lord. Dahan travelled two seasons since as groom to a party of six with ponies, but then in late Spring.’

‘I will stay three days.’

‘Just so My Lord. Xiu Li will see to your wishes.’

And they depart, Yun’s companion has remained silent throughout, though searched my face continually. By the door he places his hand against the stout bag that carries my lute. ‘Guqin’, he says tenderly.

This instrument is my pass to the community of the reclusive. I am renown for my songs and their singing. My third-best guqin has not left its bag since Stone Village and I fear damage despite all my care on the path.

Later, as the village mastiffs gradually cease their baying as the quarter moon rises I take this instrument and place it across my lap. Its seven silk strings I wipe with a cloth and gently tune with its tasselled pegs. I then prepare myself through meditation to avoid the intrusion of distracting thoughts. With my eyes closed I allow my hands to seek out and name each part of guqin: from the Forehead of the Top Board, to the String Eyes, the Dew Collector, The Mountain, Shoulder and Phoenix Wings, past the Waist, the Hat Lines and the Dragon’s Beard, to the Dragon’s Gums and thence to the Inner Top Board. I can feel the Pillar of Heaven – the sound post – has moved a little in my recent travels. So too the Pillar of Earth – but with care I move both to their rightful positions. And so on naming the inner and outer parts of each of the two boards that make up the guqin. I begin to regulate my breathing and allow the fingers of my left hand to stroke and touch, to press and oscillate in the manner of vibrato. Zhoa Wenji describes twenty-three kinds of vibrato. I feel in turn each of the hui, the thirteen gold studs that mark the harmonic nodes and allow me to play the guqin by touch alone. In these moments of preparation I hear the words of my teacher: a good player makes sounds that are plentiful but not confused. As the moon reflecting on water, so the sounds are together but not combined. Like wind in the pines, they are combined but also spread out. Such sounds are valued for their lightness. Avoid the addition of inappropriate  "guest" sounds. This is the refined theory of the guqin. To be knowledgeable about music, one must seek this, then one can realize its beauty.

I have tuned to the Huangzhong mode. The song *Amidst Mountains Thinking of an Old Friend
I have brought to mind. I recall the words of The Slender Hermit who says of this piece that its interest lies in holding cherished thoughts, but having no way to tell these to anyone. There are emotions about the present time, longings and laments for the past, but there is no way to express any of this. And so this piece.

In this poor reed hut the room is filled with mist and haze,
how far away are the things I love;
the old plum tree seems exhausted, its flowers about to die,
the mountains are lonely and I am nostalgic for past times.
The moon shines brightly on this lovely evening,
from this distance I think of my old friend and wonder where he is.
The green of the mountains never fades,
but before I know it my hair will turn white;
the moon is waning and flowers wither,
Old friend, I dream constantly of meeting you.
How hard it is to recall the joy of our last meeting!
With the many mountain ranges,
and its hidden tigers and coiled dragons,
I am unable return to you in Chang An.
The road is distant, the tall trees make the road dark,
and the world is vast.

I mourn Aquila and Lyra
separated by the Milky Way like the cowherd and weaving girl,
on the ground we are separated by 1,000 li
in the sky we are each in a separate place,
though our passions remain strong
There has been no warm correspondence,
there is restraint to the bright harmony,
and the flowing streams are swallowed by the setting sun.


The thought of this song of mid autumn touches me before its words have issued from my lips. I play the last two lines in harmonics and sing.
Zuo Si was the brother of the courtesan and poet Zuo Fen. This short story is based on a chapter from my novel Summoning the Recluse. The opening poem appears in a translation by David Hinton from his collection Mountain Home.
Arun Ajmera Feb 2013
Senses willfully
accepting one's certitude
admits existence.
Paul M Chafer Nov 2014
Watching wild unicorns, dance in the snow,
Whinnying, frolicking, as happy as can be,
As I hover high above, observing all below.

Such stunning beauty, makes my heart glow,
Mythical creatures, running wild and free,
Watching wild unicorns, dance in the snow.

They are seeds of dreams, we lovingly sow,
Rearing in acknowledgement, just for me,
As I hover high above, observing all below.

They begin racing clouds, perhaps for show,
Maybe I am a dream, one only they can see,
Watching wild unicorns, dance in the snow.

Amongst trillions of stars, one must know,
Unicorns live and play, with unbridled glee,
As I hover high above, observing all below.

Through layers of cloud, drifting so slow,
To unlock sheer bliss, I now possess the key,
Watching wild unicorns, dance in the snow,
As I hover high above, observing all below.

©Paul M Chafer 2014
Dedicated to Sally, Sia Jane, Maria, Amanda, Stephen, Wolf, Chimera, Sjr 1000, and others, whose comments on Unicorn Paradise inspired this poem ‘Wild Unicorns’. Also, out of respect, I wrote this poem today as a Villanelle, in tribute to Rick and Victoria who showed an interest in this writing style.

As I am in novel writing mode just now, writing poems, any poems, seems hard. Creating Villanelle’s are not easy at the best of times, but quite challenging. I would enjoy seeing more Villanelle's on HP; so come on, poets, challenge yourselves. Stretch your ability, explore your depths and create something beyond your own expectations. One might be surprised; I know I was.
Nicx Aug 2018
Dear Kailey,

Polyamory was not our downfall
I changed as a person
Much quicker than I anticipated
So I can imagine it felt
Catastrophic to you
Polyamory was not our problem
But it did highlight the ones we had
The reason I left you
Primarily was due to codependency
But more than that
It was your inability to compromise
I told you I needed space
You said you needed me
And that was the end of that conversation
When we tried to create boundaries
To help our adjustment to poly
What you gave me were rules
And when I tried to alter them slightly
You told me I was not compromising
I made my own mistakes too
Neither of us are perfect
And I'm not writing this to hurt you
This is for me alone
Because I've been blaming only myself
Since that night your parents took you home
Because you were blaming me
Or too harshly blaming yourself
It's not as black-and-white as that
This is not an attempt at
Relinquishing myself of blame
This is a bare acknowledgement
For me
That I am not bad
Even if I've done bad things
And I am not responsible
Solely
For your pain
I am sorry for my part in it
But I cannot
And will not
Let this responsibility weigh me down alone
Because I matter too
And it wasn't easy for me either
But it's OK
To love and care for someone
Without being in relationship with them
This series is extremely important to me. It has drastically helped with closure over past unhealthy relationships. They were all unhealthy I'm largely different ways and I did not write these to take away my own fault in the breakups, but I wrote this to rid myself of the unnecessary guilt I have been carrying around because of things that these exes have said to me or the ways in which they treated me. This project is about self-love. Not about hatred or wishing ill will upon others, because I wish them nothing but happiness. This is for me.
Stephen E Yocum Sep 2013
Returned flush with excitement,
From a ten mile bike ride,
On a day near perfect,
Out along the river,

Temp in mid seventy's
not a cloud in the sky.

Beside the river I ride,
the water summer calm flat,
Scents of wet mossy rocks,
and dogwood trees non relenting.
The perfume of the Valley,
the River damp, sweet and pure.

Ride as I did the trails,
some on paved surface.
most on wood chips and dirt.

Shifting gears to suit the,
changing terrain and the
resources within my aged knees.  

The wind from my speed,
blows refreshingly in my face,
Dark glasses slipping down my nose,
yet keeping sun glare from blinding.

I pass some people,
I smile and wave,
they reply in kind,
Maybe we even
exchange brief
verbal greetings,
Some lost in a blur
of movement.

Easy for us all to smile,
we are happy in our work.

Half way there,
I stop for a drink,
Ease my burning legs.
The spot I pick is under  
cover of a huge old walnut tree.
It's massive umbrella shade,
an embracing sanctuary.

Across the way, a little lake,
On the far bank there stands a
metal skeleton outline of three
buildings that once stood there.
This recreated site of the first
European settlement in Oregon,
Clear back in the year of 1837.

Methodist Missionaries they
were, came overland West,
from North East by wagon.
Bringing so they thought,
Needed "Civilization" to the
poor "heathens" here about.
Almost as always a very,
mistaken, arrogant notion.

There effort lasted only
four years, the locals
responding not so well to
their well intending invitation.

In historical retrospect,
one can not but applaud
their self scarifies, hardship
and strife, some of them even
died still trying.

However they did open
the door, to a new beginning,
Be it for good or ill.
Soon other settlers
made the long journey.
Becoming "Oregon Or Bust"
for many.  

As I reflect sitting beneath
this tree those early people
no doubt planted,
from seed or sapling,
brought so far to this
new land of beginning.
It stands here still,
176 years later,
a wonderful living,
still growing testament
to human efforts of trying.

The breeze livens,
stirs sweet pungent
scents of brackish water,
forest, and Valley,
hints of crocus,
ripe black berries and
summer flowers blooming,
All these scents mingle,
and grow ever stronger.

Off in the near distance,
a strengthening breeze whispers,
Approaching through forest trees
coming ever closer and nearer.
Reaching me in a refreshing
gust that lasts for only a minute.
The sweat upon my face
cooling at it's touch. As I smile,
in grateful acknowledgement.

I have seen this day,
two kinds of squirrels
one red, one grey colored.
Coveys' of doves taking flight,
from my approaching bike,
And birds of many description,
A Red Tailed Hawk on wing,
Harassed by two small pursuit birds
protecting their nests from him.
A huge Bald Eagle diving for fish.
And one of my very favorites,
a spindly legged Blue Heron.
Standing in mud, fishing.
Even a smart fox,
scurrying back to hide
in the foliage, too shy
and too fast to be viewed
for too long by a human.

Thankful as I am,
for this one more
glorious day of living,
In the ***** of nature
so inspiring, so splendid.
I embrace Life and in return,
it grants me, continuation.

I plan on returning soon,
maybe tomorrow if my legs
let me.
To those new agers, young hip and maybe even a little
judgmental friends out there. I'm a plain simple old guy,
not word fancy, I write pretty much like I speak, a little
old fashion but straight from the hip and heart. No pandering,
no pretense, no ******* and surely no apologies intended.
It's not pure, maybe not even poetry, but what I guess I'm
saying is consider the source and take it or leave it.
It was written and intended all for me, from the beginning.
Which is what all writer's and poets should always do,
write for themselves not a Jury. There is a real freedom in that.
Mateuš Conrad Apr 2017
.how does philosophy and psychology differ? well. psychology was spawned from having to focus on the "need" of a "learning" for writing: speak comes easy, writing, not so much. psychology is so easily spoken, philosophy isn't, philosophy is like a child talking to an adult when psychology / sophistry comes into play /
    refrain... how do i rephrase this statement?
      ah! philosophy is like a child talking to a child...
psychology is like an adult talking to a child...
psychology is a supertition of knowledge...
philosophy? a fear of knowledge.
  knowledge does not make happy people,
or gullible talkative types, either.

... the birth of psychology contra philosophy... the when sophia over-powered the philosophers with too many observation cues... maxims and aphorisms... la rochefoucauld & nietzsche... it began with a dialogue, it maintained itself in a solipsistic monologue... it ended up as advertisement slogans: maxims and aphorisms.... cute observations: seen, "seen" but never tested... i've seen the ugly side of psychology... it's psychiatry... the big pharma carousel and slurred sedative spreschen... try getting a slurred sedative spreschen out of me... i'll sock you... i'm this: )( close to the itch of throwing a punch, i almost forgot what implies: peace... me dancing on old college's (edinburgh) roof while listening to: the shins, new slang... that was peace...
  that was me: rooftop, night, moon,
and the lingo of limbs floating freely off my torso
and at the same attached to it...

       i once cared about a "double" chin...
i grew a beard,
stopped worrying about: when will i learn
the violin... fiddled with my beard
for a while and figured: not now,
not ever...
                much much more gracious
than fiddling with ***** hair...
after all: a beard is very much akin
to ***** hair...

          jordan peterson and the old testament...
right...
       if ever a cain...
  siberia looks like the ideal prison...
after all god said, or "said": let him walk off his sins...
hard to walk off your sins when caged...
siberia? perfect training ground...
all that ******* being sold, cain? a vegetarian...
abel? sacrificed animal flesh...
paradox... so... god... expected us...
to remain hunter gatherers?!
  cain was thinking ahead!
he sacrificed fruits and veg. and...
cain was like: we better start thinking about
morphing into an agricultural society!
god praised abel, the neanderthal hunter gatherer...
cain was like: but look! look! wheat! bread!
we can feed more people!
god said: hunter gatherer! abel! win win!
cain paid homage to god
via fruit & veg...
abel... via kosher blood sacrifices...
now... either i'm just plain stupid...
or god is a really bad fiction....
written up by circumcised men
who never learned to *******:
since: the obvious impediment restriction...

cain was a veggie... abel sacrificed animals...
mea culpa somnum... send this whole
died on the cross
          ergo saved ergo ergo
my fault ******* to sleep... i'm tired of this mantra
like an eskimo is bored of ice...
i'm bored of listening to semitic proverbs...
   i'm bored of their rubrics...
their: "fate-warnings",
their superstitions... a semite will forever remain
a semite for me: kippah-***-tonsure...
or a camel-jockey brigade... lucky them they settled
on a once grand mountain range
of Sahara that was the bed for oil...

oh look! wow! i can think for myself!
wonderful...
               which is what i always thought
would become reality...
i'd watch a video...
not comment,
                 and write a rebuttal...
                  which would fall on deaf ears...
or that sacred minority report...
i'll face it if you face it:
the monotheistic god of the semites...
is as ridiculous
as the poloytheism of the pagans...
      the monotheistic god of the semites
is just too... pristine...
     give too many omni- prefixes
to a being and he becomes, boring...
like superman...
                  and to still preserve intellectual
integrity within the ontological omni-
zoo?
                              hey! feel free!
       i much prefer to believe in a "god"
of a limited circumstance...
                  as the will of creation? sure: omni- etc.,
but as a spectator in the back of the minds
of the "created"? cameo presence...
hence not omni- etc.,
                  after all: free will is free will...
and it requires no divine intervention
in order for it to be proved...
  however bad it happens to be upon
embodiment...
    god was never a source of intervention...
the jews begged prayed lampooned for
that sort of god...
did it fare them well? i don't think so...
god was always a cameo for me...
   something i could rely on...
in terms of finding my grand jurisprudence
libra... when the human sense of justice
would disintegrate...
and i'd be met with the west saxon mantra
of: innocent until proven guilty...
or a jimmy saville...
  i was wronged,
no one will believe me,
fair enough...
                     at least i've found some source
of compensation,
for the time being,
before i believe: not to be reunited
with the dead loved ones...
but before i believe to stand
in the grand court of judgement...
with king Solomon as the prosecutor
.


do what the english language does, it uses
hyphens to create compounds...  just do this:
            object-object...
   would i **** it?                depends on the follow-ups
that constrict the two-way "system"
of re-appropriation
            with the german language...
it really is the new: north south east west
"copernican" discussion...
    the **** am i supposed to do
(as a male) with an object
     that's not object=object... because it isn't...
      or object≠object: well? because it
clearly isn't...
                      ****, bro?
                       can i get a hotdog instead?
yeah yeah, extra onions on top...
                            but write it out in
that natural **** schizoi fashion
    as post-german compounds... hyphenated,
but instead include the following variations...
      and put them up for a narcissus inspection
and ask: are they chiral?
               stress-free is a compound word...
           but it's easier with an object-object
compound... 'cos' then you can **** around with
object-object... object=object...
             object≠object...
                                object~object...­
                       object≈object...
                           and   object≡object...
it's close proximity, i gather, so it's hard to
orientate yourself as you might with 1 + 1 = 2...
                      but it's in english, and english is
prone to try and forget the norman conquest
and rekindle itself as: with a germanic origin,
and all that custard that modern german
looks like: i'd be sooner wearing sun-glasses than
actual optic magnifiers if i was found
reading german krupahunddoughchew...
                               or the likes of this fake example.
true transgender? it happens in the ≡ category...
the binary...
       it means: even though you're male
   and can't fulfil the female role of a reproductive
****** capacity... i'd still *******...
    joke's on me...
                 but otherwise? apart from the starting point
in the english language...
      the hyphen and compounding words
as is the "vogue" standard...
               so working from object-object...
and then including the stated variations
                       of a dualistic **** by dichotomy...
         ah man... i'm just talking about
how english is trying to resurrect its saxon
ancestors... what with creating these hyphenated
words... you're going to shove some
      other mathematical symbol in between
the two stated words and think of
                                  some grander schematics...
the death of the university coincided with
the death of the asylum...
                               evidently 2 + 2 does equal 4...
         but it's still a case of working
from object-object...
                            object/subject-subject/object?
north, east, west, south...
                      what the ****?!
                        we have modern neanderthals
roaming this place, and they're faking
  the status **** sapiens... that the hell can
evolve from that?
                    clear and bite-sized truth acknowledgement:
we're **** schizoi... split brained...
                     we've reached a stage where
we're not modelled by a multiplication impetus,
but an obelus impetus (÷)...
                       western society figured...
as **** similis: we have a billion chinese and
a billion blue indians of the raj...
                                why should we be bothered?
                isn't that the case of what's happening?
unearthing the nag hammadi library
                               and the whole transgender movement?
oi! where's the vatican! get those cardinals off their *****!
                                 white, red, purple, black.
pope, cardinal, bishop... priest...
           sure sure... brown....                          monks.
but we're losing a fight against neanderthal islam...
                   come your hungry, your oppressed...
your first cousin ******* retards.
                                         i know i'm taunting,
i'm taunting with a reason: neanderthal islam....
                 so much for history and gloating about it
citing the ottomans; thing is... i have lost the ability
to fear death... i'm actually teasing it, more and more,
day after day, after yet another day...
                          it's a bit like the reverse process of
castration... i'm feeling up pigs' genitals, saying:
      oh look! this porky can sign in #A!
                               quick! to the castrato oink corp!
yep... etymology... the alternative to reading
history.
IsReaL E Summers Dec 2014
What is this craving?
And where does it lead?
I was nothing...
                              but...
bare witness inside of me.

**Please.
tread Jan 2012
Quiet guns,
Quiet guns
Go off inside my head.

Always thoughts of dreaming, falling fast inside my bed.

Quiet guns,
Quiet guns,
From all the books I've read.

Always thoughts of falling, falling fast inside my head.

And should the sun speak in French tongues,
I know the words quite well.

Quiet guns,
Quiet guns,
From all the bombs that fell.

And happiness is always seen,
Beneath its faded shroud;
But never when we feel it free,
Of pain and darkened clouds.

Metaphors and thoughts of death,
I've never seen to see;
I simply look and stare with awe,
I wish to simply be.

Quiet guns,
Quiet guns,
Acknowledgement hurts truth.

Acknowledgement is relative;
These words do more than soothe.

Immortal in my mortal mind,
Yet frightened of the void.
I draw myself with hook and tie;
So far I have enjoyed
The ride.

Quiet guns,
Quiet guns,
My throat is filled with lumps;
A sign, perhaps, that I am young,
And hit my first speed bump.

My feet, they weep in pain, inflamed,
My ears, they ring like screens.
Perhaps I'm rushing through this game,
As sadness tears the seams,
Of what seemed to be some sort of Zen,
A freedom cloud.

Regardless of this pain and sound,
I wish to live out loud,
And see the world in better health;
I'll make the dead me proud.

Quiet guns,
Quiet guns,
Go off inside my head.

Always thoughts of dreaming, falling fast
Inside my bed.
ABadPenname Oct 2014
How about distribution,
Another ******* poem To and About "love," and aspirational ***.                                        
            Lip metaphor:
A thick paperback flipped through  both covers in a momentary fluttering; I love that sharp sound.
             Can we break the law a little?
The one that we made without words, and no acknowledgement was needed.      
             -So we'll only break a few,
The one that keeps our lips apart; our individual pages each being read one sentence at a time, maybe passed around the party to obtain a variety of opinion for the same smooth structures.
              So needy for an affirmation, you, all of you, all of us.
All of Our ******* lovepoems and lovers.     Misery a lot-
Don't pretend you arent enjoying it, you masochists, writers.
             About ***:
Take them off, just take them all off-leave no room to guess, I will not dare aspire toward my fiction.
Or else leave them on, and sit here, and lay here, lie here, sleep here, wake here, leave here unviolated by my hands-but keep yourself dressed.
I am **** writing in stanzas.
Effort?
What is this that of which you speak?
Any ounce of effort I put in,
Not a speck of acknowledgement do they me beseech,

What is effort?
If effort is thrown back at one,
Told that one is not good enough,
And that all the time ones put in work is of no luck,

Its not good enough,
Never will it be,
No matter how much sweat or tears,
It’ll never suffice to those who see,

I can slit my wrists and bleed into my creation,
Put every bit of essence of me in,
But there will always be those,
Who tell me my best is not enough,

So effort who the hell are you?
Effort who so does tell me I will reap,
All I get from you effort,
Is wasted time that doesn’t come cheap,

So effort you’re done and fine,
But some acknowledgement is about this time,
If it’s not enough my best,
You can just ****** off like the rest.
The Wicca Man Jul 2013
I could answer your questions with a simple, off-the-cuff explanation but have ended up writing this essay: the more I thought about what you’d asked, the more the I felt it warranted a fuller explanation so I will try to explain why I call myself a Wiccan and how I come to be following the Wicca Path. And apologies in advance for the length of this!

As well as my love of Literature, I love History with a similar passion. My degree was in English and History and although I specialised in Shakespearian and post-Shakespearian literature and Modern History, I have a long held fascination with Celtic and pre-Celtic history, beliefs and spirituality. It is the mysticism of the Old Religion that seemed to attract me most and I found myself drawn particularly to the Celtic and Welsh mythology and have read extensively about it: Cornwall and Wales (mid Wales in particular) are my two favourite places in the world. I have read a lot about Celtic and pre-Celtic history, beliefs and religion over the years, both fiction and non-fiction.

Although Jewish by birth, I was brought up by my father who was a confirmed atheist so I lost out on any formal religious influence as I was growing up. Perhaps because of his views, I developed a distrust of formal, mainstream religion. That’s not to say I felt I had no spiritual beliefs at all, it’s just they were untapped and unidentified; I felt I was reaching out for something but it never took on any tangible form, rather like in a dream when you cannot see clearly the faces or forms of the inhabitants of your dreams.

By the time I got into my forties, I realised there was something seriously lacking in the spiritual side of my life. These beliefs were compounded by three events:

    * reading James Lovelock's Gaia theory [which inspired me to write one of my favourite stories, Gaia's Last, published here];
    * my discovery of Jean Auel's Earth's Children series of books , Clan of the Cave Bear, etc. which go into extraordinary detail of Cro-Magnon peoples' belief in nature spirits, worship of The Mother and Shamanism;
    * a sudden change in my circumstances that forced me to re-evaluate every aspect of my life and my existence.

It was at this time I began to research the Old Religion: paganism, nature-worship, whatever you want to call it, and this led me to discover Wicca.

The more I read about it, the more I realised it fitted in with my current state of mind and outlook on life. Maybe there is a sense of escapism inasmuch as the roots of Wicca look backward to a simpler time and as I was having difficulty coping with the complexities of the changed circumstances in my life at the time. Wicca seemed to offer exactly the spiritual needs I was lacking.

That is not to say that Wicca is old-fashioned and out of date. Rather the contrary in fact. Whilst its roots acknowledge the Old Religion, Wicca is relatively modern having been developed by a guy called Gerald Gardner who published a book called Witchcraft Today in the 1940s I believe which re-established in the public eye the old pagan beliefs that have been around since the dawn of man. These beliefs never really disappeared even through the worst of the atrocities perpetrated against followers of the Old Religion [The Burning Times ]. (And just to make an important point about the title of the book and Wicca in general, Witchcraft in the pagan and Wicca context is NOT Black Magic or Satanism as the tabloid press or mainstream religion would have you believe; it could not be further from them. It is simply an acknowledgement of the existence of natural forces that can be used or channelled by those who choose to learn these ancient skills).

I have seen Wicca [and other forms of Paganism] referred to as Green Magic and that seems the perfect definition; it is immensely comforting to work so closely with the natural world and to feel such a part of it.

So for me, Wicca is an ideal spiritual antidote for the impossibly fast-paced, self-serving lifestyles we all seem to be caught up in these days, often through no choice of our own. It is as valid a belief system as any other practised throughout the world and is nothing like the forms of Wicca popularised in the media with TV shows like Charmed and its ilk!

Wicca is it is not something to be taken on lightly - Wicca practices should be treated with the same reverence as those in any other belief system. It requires study, practice and dedication.’

I have to confess to have been lacking in all three since I originally wrote this so have vowed to myself to rectify these shortcomings. I feel excited about my rekindled sense of spirituality and more at peace with myself for making this decision.

Go in Love & Light!
I hope people don't object to my posting this; I am a passionate believer in freedom of speech and of expression. I hope people here are open to these views, which are mine and in no way do I want to foist my views on anyone or indeed, cause offence.
Carl Webb II Sep 2018
'tis acknowledgement, more than thankfulness, that allows a being to reap all of the glorious benefits that this life has to offer.
it is seeing. it is believing. it is acknowledging
. . .
all that exists . . . acknowledge it. so that its existence does not go unnoticed.
and, notice, i am not asking you to focus on it, i am not asking you to give everything in life more attention than it deserves but be aware.
when something pops into your realm of awareness, acknowledge it;
that's how you stay aware. don't ignore it, don't overdo it.
universal acknowledgement will do
. . .
and once you've acknowledged the presence of the object, only then will you be able to decide how to feel about it.
only then, will you be able to truly understand what is going on around you.
'tis acknowledgement that is the key to our emotions.
before we know how to hate or to love, before we know how to be happy about, before we know how to be sad about, before we know how to feel indifference towards
. . .
we must have acknowledged the object of our feelings . . .
before we are able to be thankful for . . .
before we are even able to thank . . .
we have to acknowledge
. . .
i've fiddled with this idea for a while and i believe i've finally come to a temporary conclusion, just bear with me.
. . .
we pray and we pray and we thank all day long.
we speak to God, or any other entity that will listen, to send us some help or to appreciate.
yet, how do we even know what to appreciate . . . if we are not aware, if we have not acknowledged all that is present in our lives
. . .
how can I say "thank you" for a blessing I know nothing about . . .
how can I know what needs to leave my life if I have not acknowledged it as such - simply a thing that is no good for me - how do I feel no good about something I have not felt
. . .
if I keep my eyes shut long enough, will all of life disappear without ever giving me a chance to be thankful, or without ever giving me a chance to see what is necessary and unnecessary.
will things ever change if we do not open our minds, our eyes, our hearts, open up our ears, if we are not open to all ideas, will we ever be able to see what is truly right and what is truly wrong
. . .
acknowledgement. an automatic ability of a being but there is something that keeps us from acknowledging the presence of the ability to acknowledge, within ourselves . . .
pt. 1
Nicx May 2014
Sitting here trying to make small talk, I'm going insane, we're all insane.
Broken topics over chips and salsa, god its so bizarre, I don't understand how "normal" we all are.
I keep my mouth semi-full so I'm unable to speak, I can't stand myself, ****, why am I so weak?
Why does this bother me so? It's like no one even knows,
the truth,
be told it's a mess, I can't stand too much more of this, someone relieve me from this **** before it makes me sick..
All the underlying problems...drink to numb the pain but those same drinks taketh life away.
And I don't mean with death, for life still moves on, but it's broken into pieces and it's better off gone.
Cause one needs it to stay strong and the other knows that lifestyle is wrong:
Substances don't bring you happiness, they don't fix your pain, they ruin relationships and families all the same.
But we sat and we talked, topics in no particular range, and what hurts is seeing how things both have and haven't changed.
The connection is there, but the love has departed; neither hope nor intention to go back and restart it.
And now we're driving away and nothing is said, no mention of the insanity that hides in my head,
No acknowledgement to the tears I watch my own mom fight back..similar to the sick truth the whole situation lacked.
I don't like pretending that things are normal when they aren't. I had to go to my step moms house with my mom and it was sad to see how things are now and try to have 'caring' conversations. I love them both but its hard and I don't enjoy it.
1.
I'm sorry for your Pain
Surely it has made your scared
And surely not all of it is fair
But know it's only in your mind
And it makes you one of our kind
I'm sorry for your Pain

I'm sorry for your Allergies
or any other problems
Disease is unjust as this life
And those that aren't undone
Can take life as quick as it comes
Or faster, it some cases
I only hope that my disease
That unto yours, erases
I'm sorry for your Allergies

I'm sorry for your Inequality
If I had one and you had two
I'd walk right up and say thank you
If you had two and I had one
It would not be, I would just run
But, Oh! I lament that it is so
For I have all, and I do know
People in our world fight to live
People in our world fail to live
Simple differences account for some
Tell me how you have come undone
Into a world in which our fear
Makes people want to not be here
I love you more, but that's not now
I cannot express, infinitely how
I'm sorry for your Inequality

I'm sorry for the Night
If ever it is dark outside
And you feel under pressure
Believe that darkness is alright
Believe that there is love in the absence of the light
You cannot see, but I love it
Darkness is who I am
Darkness is why we have some light
Darkness is what I am
And you are light, well, it is so
Always in my own eyes
Without darkness, if only light
There would be no surprise
I'm sorry for the Night

I'm sorry for your Misconceptions
Gradual pain lacking detection
Though you can't feel it, it isn't right
Behold what keeps me up at night
Money, fear, and imitation
All electronic stimulation
It's all vanity for let me say
It shouldn't really be that way
Arrows point you along the lines
To blind you from what you can find
I won't change you, you're independent
I'm sorry for your Misconception

I'm sorry for your Orders
I'm sorry since they make
You do for others, but listen now
It's surely a mistake
Collaboration makes us whole
Orders tear us apart
Doing for them will make your life
Begin to fail to start
Only do for others if they would do for you!
And if you do for others, do it also for you
For those who blindly follow feel so found, but are so lost
And acting for others all your life has an infinite cost
I'm sorry for your Orders

I'm sorry for your Violence
It's not right for us to fight
To use anger to express spite
People who hit surely don't know
What you would say, though it is so
I've heard you say it's not deserved
I've seen you ignore what you've heard
When you are hurt is my worst fear
I hope in your heart, I am near
For this message will take you through
And make a free person of you
I'm sorry for your Violence

I'm sorry for your Ego
Now, I'm glad you have some pride
We are all the same and you will know
This, if you look inside
There's no reason to feel as though
You're above or below
We are all made of dust of stars
And if you look, it shows
However, if you stand above
And you do so not out of love
I suspect that you may not see
That I am you, and you are me
I hope we come together so
We can all love and hear,
If we compromise our egos,
We shall be free of fear
I'm sorry for your Ego

I'm sorry for your Sadness
Though it does have a function
It may halt you from progressing
At an emotion junction
Oh, how I feel! How I struggle
To see you being sad
But I move on, for I do know
This sadness should be had
Sadness can never be deserved!
And at times, it's not right
But as sadness is like the dark,
Our love can be the light
So when you fall remember this,
From the bottom of the cup
As love fills up your spirit now
The water goes right up!
In this moment, please have no fear
Please fight to carry on
The sadness will be what saves you
Unless you're already gone
I'm sorry for your Sadness

Though I want you to have no pain,
Sorry, it isn't right
You now have oh, so much to gain
For let me shed some light:

2.
I'm not sorry for your Understanding
For since you clearly see
You understand our culture, here,
and you understand me
Oh, how I fight! Oh, how I seek!
I live to understand
Understanding does bring
And as it enhances my mind
It does a greater thing
It gives me my most sacred power
Which is to empathize with you
It makes it so I know what's false
And what I love, that is what's true
Understanding is all I need
To make this life complete
I look at you and understand
What it's like to walk in your feet
And what a majestic time it is!
To see someone and know
That all I've done and all they've done
Have led us here, to where we go
To meet and see each other's love
And burn each other's fear
When you help me understand you
Is truly only when I hear
I'm not sorry for your Understanding

I'm not sorry for your Sorrow
Even if regret can harm
Regret can consume your entire life
Or compromise your charm
Yet here, know this! You open up
When you apologize
And if you knew what it really was
It would be a surprise
Your sorrow is so humble
Your sorrow shapes your life
So long as sorrow teaches you
And please, without a knife
The function is for you to learn
To correct a bad fate
And now, all you need to do
Is not repeat mistakes
And please be free! For beyond that
Sorrow is but a waste
Take what the sorrow teaches you
And then, before it's too late,
Forget the pain, and do move on
It can be hard, I know
But once you love with what you've learned
The efforts of your sorrow show
I'm not sorry for your Sorrow

3.
Laterally and downward
Crazily like a pup
This is only what you expect
But it is only up

Like a madman scribbling
Or a child bored in class
Pain drags us along for a crazy ride
As if we have no mass

But listen here! Because I love
I can tell you why
Your pain just makes you beautiful!
Your pain just makes me cry

All of my new found perceptions
Enhance my life tenfold
But what you hear is born of pain!
I'm so warmed by the cold

And judge me not, but understand
I love the pained, the hurt
I love them more for their presence
Is such a wonderful work

I will plainly continue and say that your pain makes you beautiful. When I speak to my brothers and sisters who are mentally challenged, homosexual, or any other type of minority, I feel so loved and lucky to be in their presence because I know they had to fight harder to get to a point that they could look into my eyes and smile through their adversity. Pain has brought me gratitude!! Because since my pain made me isolated, so much as an acknowledgement makes me feel so loved. Pain has brought me perception!! Because I see the same gratefulness in others and it makes me understand that we all love those who share our pain. And along those lines, most importantly, pain brings us together. You should embrace your pain and wear in on your shoulder since you fought through it, you earned it, and by sharing it with others, we find what we truly have in common. Every person who shares their pain let's the struggling brothers and sisters know they are not alone! Pain is darkness, but by letting people know their pain is not abstract, we shed light unto their pain and we all love each other better and more productively.

I lost control, but just know this
Beauty is only pain
And from sharing the pain you have
Such love you have to gain!
It's another one where the letters, PAIN MOVES US, spell out sections 1 and 2, then I just had to go on a tangent since I love how much pain is beauty in my life and I hope you can love people through pain like I do because it is one of the best parts of my life
Brian O'blivion Jul 2013
theres
not
a
that
could
would
or make
you
past
tense



scratch
the
surface
and
you
still
draw
blood

­

parallel words vertical lies
sugar cane thighs flood plain skies
reprieve magnified
Donall Dempsey Oct 2018
TEACHING TIMOTHY TO READ
( for Maureen )

She is teaching Timothy
to read

even though she
can't read herself.

Tongue firmly in cheek
she traces the words

with a tiny fingertip
that knows the story

off by heart she
could read it in the dark.

She is "pretending reading."
She has my every nuance and pause

by rote
making great efforts

to teach Timothy
the puppy

but Timothy the puppy
is more interested in

the un-thrown stick.

Timothy the puppy thinks this reading lark is
strictly for the humans.

"Once..." she begins
in a Fairy Tale-ish voice.

Timothy the puppy
barks in acknowledgement.

"Throwthestickthrowthestick!"
Timothy the Puppy's mind thinks.

"...upon a time
a long long time

...ago!"

Timothy the puppy looks
adoringly at his little mistress

with such an immensity of love and
licks her finger as it

travels over the words
the story's journey.

"Oh you..!" she scolds
"...are not even paying attention!"

"It's no good...I give up!"
she frowns at the unhappy creature

throwing the book away
in a prissy hissy fit.

Timothy the puppy
full of the joys of

a dog's life
( it's the only life he knows )

chases the fluttering pages
that fly like an exotic bird

brings Hans Christian Anderson back
his mouth full of words.
Ammy May 2014
i never knew
   they never knew
     he never knew
        she never knew





and you'd never know.
Steven Fortune Apr 2014
Olive branches smother and dismember
in the mud giggling in time
with the squish emanating from
my alternating huff and puff
footprints

I trudge in Winter's sweat of
schizophrenic rain
My old defence, sheepish stolidity,
got tweaked in a twist-up
tight as a candy cane
with a modest gasp
of underground success

That shadowy hush of acknowledgement
ballooned in my ear like a blow fish
amplifying the environmental inertia
that never made me happier
nor this sad

I may have been mad
walking from informed opinions
like a failed Orpheus
but defence shouted in silence
and I returned home
to the unconditional support
of a pet art

Acknowledgement's shadowy hush
tore a blister trail down my back
The ointment of Winter will soothe and
release me before billing me
with a scar and littering in the recycle bin
of who I want to be

Today I wanted to be accepted
Night has arrived with reinforced snowflakes
and the chill on my hot back
has me wondering if I would rather be feared
03 29 14

— The End —