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clever Apr 2018
It's 11:32
I'm still waiting here for you
Made my way down city blocks
Ignoring people, kicking rocks
But you've reached the deadline
It's 11:59
And I'm still waiting.
ok okay Jul 2018
The lull of a restless night relieves my senses
It's monotone silence maintains my breath
The cold night breeze enters through an open window
It whispers soft tunes and attempts to put me to sleep
The humming of an exhausted laptop helps me decompress
It distracts me from overthinking and blocks out my stress
As the night goes on it starts to rain
It comforts my senses and cleanses my pain
This time-worn house cracks and creaks
It talks of troubled times and how it came to be
This place I call home proves i’m never alone
And it's always there to support me
3rd poem. Enjoy :)
Sometimes I don’t do
What I like doing most
Held up
Stuck
Oh!! the mind blocks
The blocks
Which could have been building blocks
But instead, they lay there as the roadblocks
Traffic and Jams
No, it’s not the sweet jam
That you savour on a toasted bread
Instead it’s roasting your head
Everything comes to one big
Halt
The
Mind blocks
zuMee Jun 2018
will little squiggles
of pixels organised in blocks
of "words" and "sentences" ever
even come close to translating
a nuclear blast
in the
brain?
eye
thinks
not.
Steam rises from the blocks of industry
beyond the immediate trees;
a thin white veil
cloaking the city like a bedsheet.
And you waking, displacing
your head about apathetically
trying to light a smoke
with sunlight -

this linear love on a tangent,
golden, some ornament.

Everything up then falling
each morning, with light
tethered to the ceiling
while you lay still
dazed from dreaming,
the day breaks unassuming.
Jesse stillwater Jul 2018
the Silence became
like an old lesson learned

a broken heart intones
a voiceless song
resonating a refrain of Silent echoes
in a voice that never heard a word
yet spoke so clearly ... lingering
in realms of subtle ambiance

soundless remnants
stacked neatly as
building blocks;  
another brick in a wall,
already too tall to see beyond—
growing like a bunker
without a sense of safe harbor

as the Silence became
time and space,
a stillness beset the melancholy air
as if a world without song
foreboding an unpredictable storm
beget vestiges of broken windfall,
reticent leftovers hushed after a gale

s i l e n t l y

an acorn fallen  — became a mighty Oak

a wind-broke twig — became a weeping willow

a neglected child — became mother nature's son

the Silence became
        a blind prophet —
in its voice held forth
smatterings of truth
and undertones of an unrequited
fool’s hope

the Silence became
a strong, abrupt rush of wind
uttering voiceless exhalations of breath;
a hovering dawn mist
    befallen after a summer storm—
surrounding all in all
bedewed in a feigned peace


... the unabated sounds of silence
become


Jesse Stillwater ... July 20th, 2018
Thank you or reading —
delicatefractal Jun 2011
A sluggish haze
blocks the smell
--vanilla--
from next door.

I sneak into the shower.
Dan Filcek Apr 2015
consciousness conceived as complex matrices
patterns contained within patterns.
magnetic anomaly brainwave synchronization
unrecognized vortex activity locations.
correlation amplification phenomena resonance.
measurable parameter brain wave activity
highly sensitive field fluctuations.
transducer low frequency geomagnetic pulsations
electromagnetic patterns: their associated chemical changes.
Weak intensity complex magnetic fields
generated earth hum technology affect
flux-gate sample collapsing fields
amplifier filter stages couples into analog digital converter.
experiments correlating local geophysical anomalies
earth's magnetic field changes consciousness.
single electromagnetic coupling mechanism
including spin-mediated neurons.
upsurge solar activity alters brain rhythms, hormonal levels
healing nature mystic experiences
anomalous cognition ******-physical phenomena.
internal model reality - subjective consciousness
addition computational capacity
existential status may need exotic physics
quantum entanglement and new forms of physical interaction
magnetic sensory cells induced meditative states
direct correlation shifts magnetic flux.
No active effort required.
Magnetic mineral aligned crystal chains
embedded biological membranes.
atomic sublattices of ferrimagnetic material
plausible theoretical mechanisms
mechanosensitive membrane ion gates
specific synergetic properties for transduction.
cuboctahedral morphology properties
jitterbugging vector equilibrium matrix basis tensegrity.
basic geometrical biological building blocks.
mystical red rock temples
Tracing disjunctive dislocations
Mother Earth speaks
Questions remain.
This year for Poetry Month, I decided to post a "found poem" every day. If writing a poem is like painting, a "found poem" is like sculpting. source - https://jcer.com/index.php/jcj/article/viewFile/318/343 - The Sedona Effect
FIRST DAY

1.
Who wanted me
to go to Chicago
on January 6th?
I did!

The night before,
20 below zero
Fahrenheit
with the wind chill;
as the blizzard of 99
lay in mountains
of blackening snow.

I packed two coats,
two suits,
three sweaters,
multiple sets of long johns
and heavy white socks
for a two-day stay.

I left from Newark.
**** the denseness,
it confounds!

The 2nd City to whom?
2nd ain’t bad.
It’s pretty good.
If you consider
Peking and Prague,
Tokyo and Togo,
Manchester and Moscow,
Port Au Prince and Paris,
Athens and Amsterdam,
Buenos Aries and Johannesburg;
that’s pretty good.

What’s going on here today?
It’s friggin frozen.
To the bone!

But Chi Town is still cool.
Buddy Guy’s is open.
Bartenders mixing drinks,
cabbies jamming on their breaks,
honey dew waitresses serving sugar,
buildings swerving,
fire tongued preachers are preaching
and the farmers are measuring the moon.

The lake,
unlike Ontario
is in the midst of freezing.
Bones of ice
threaten to gel
into a solid mass
over the expanse
of the Michigan Lake.
If this keeps up,
you can walk
clear to Toronto
on a silver carpet.

Along the shore
the ice is permanent.
It’s the first big frost
of winter
after a long
Indian Summer.

Thank God
I caught a cab.
Outside I hear
The Hawk
nippin hard.
It’ll get your ear,
finger or toe.
Bite you on the nose too
if you ain’t careful.

Thank God,
I’m not walking
the Wabash tonight;
but if you do cover up,
wear layers.

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

I’m overwhelmed
and this is my tenth time here.

It’s almost better,
sometimes it is better,
a lot of times it is better
and denser then New York.

Ask any Bull’s fan.
I’m a Knickerbocker.
Yes Nueva York,
a city that has placed last
in the standings
for many years.
Except the last two.
Yanks are # 1!

But Chicago
is a dynasty,
as big as
Sammy Sosa’s heart,
rich and wide
as Michael Jordan’s grin.

Middle of a country,
center of a continent,
smack dab in the mean
of a hemisphere,
vortex to a world,
Chicago!

Kansas City,
Nashville,
St. Louis,
Detroit,
Cleveland,
Pittsburgh,
Denver,
New Orleans,
Dallas,
Cairo,
Singapore,
Auckland,
Baghdad,
Mexico City
and Montreal
salute her.



2.
Cities,
A collection of vanities?
Engineered complex utilitarianism?
The need for community a social necessity?
Ego one with the mass?
Civilization’s latest *******?
Chicago is more then that.

Jefferson’s yeoman farmer
is long gone
but this capitol
of the Great Plains
is still democratic.

The citizen’s of this city
would vote daily,
if they could.

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

The namesake river
segments the city,
canals of commerce,
all perpendicular,
is rife throughout,
still guiding barges
to the Mississippi
and St. Laurence.

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

Chicago is really jazzy,
swanky clubs,
big steaks,
juices and drinks.

You get the best
coffee from Seattle
and the finest teas
from China.

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they serve is Jazz
Rock me steady
Keep the beat
Keep it flowin
Feel the heat!

Jazz Jazz Jazz
All they is, is Jazz
Fast cars will take ya
To the show
Round bout midnight
Where’d the time go?

Flows into the Mississippi,
the mother of America’s rivers,
an empires aorta.

Great Lakes wonder of water.
Niagara Falls
still her heart gushes forth.

Buffalo connected to this holy heart.
Finger Lakes and Adirondacks
are part of this watershed,
all the way down to the
Delaware and Chesapeake.

Sandburg’s Chicago?
Oh my my,
the wonder of him.
Who captured the imagination
of the wonders of rivers.

Down stream other holy cities
from the Mississippi delta
all mapped by him.

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

Midwest?
Midwest from where?
It’s north of Caracas and Los Angeles,
east of Fairbanks,
west of Dublin
and south of not much.

Him,
who spoke of honest men
and loving women.
Working men and mothers
bearing citizens to build a nation.
The New World’s
precocious adolescent
caught in a stream
of endless and exciting change,
much pain and sacrifice,
dedication and loss,
pride and tribulations.

From him we know
all the people’s faces.
All their stories are told.
Never defeating the
idea of Chicago.

Sandburg had the courage to say
what was in the heart of the people, who:

Defeated the Indians,
Mapped the terrain,
Aided slavers,
Fought a terrible civil war,
Hoisted the barges,
Grew the food,
Whacked the wheat,
Sang the songs,
Fought many wars of conquest,
Cleared the land,
Erected the bridges,
Trapped the game,
Netted the fish,
Mined the coal,
Forged the steel,
Laid the tracks,
Fired the tenders,
Cut the stone,
Mixed the mortar,
Plumbed the line,
And laid the bricks
Of this nation of cities!

Pardon the Marlboro Man shtick.
It’s a poor expostulation of
crass commercial symbolism.

Like I said, I’m a
Devil Fan from Jersey
and Madison Avenue
has done its work on me.

It’s a strange alchemy
that changes
a proud Nation of Blackhawks
into a merchandising bonanza
of hometown hockey shirts,
making the native seem alien,
and the interloper at home chillin out,
warming his feet atop a block of ice,
guzzling Old Style
with clicker in hand.

Give him his beer
and other diversions.
If he bowls with his buddy’s
on Tuesday night
I hope he bowls
a perfect game.

He’s earned it.
He works hard.
Hard work and faith
built this city.

And it’s not just the faith
that fills the cities
thousand churches,
temples and
mosques on the Sabbath.

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

An alcoholic broker named Bill
lives the Twelve Steps
to banish fear and loathing
for one more day.
Bill believes in sobriety.

A tug captain named Moe
waits for the spring thaw
so he can get the barges up to Duluth.
Moe believes in the seasons.

A farmer named Tom
hopes he has reaped the last
of many bitter harvests.
Tom believes in a new start.

A homeless man named Earl
wills himself a cot and a hot
at the local shelter.
Earl believes in deliverance.

A Pullman porter
named George
works overtime
to get his first born
through medical school.
George believes in opportunity.

A folk singer named Woody
sings about his
countrymen inheritance
and implores them to take it.
Woody believes in people.

A Wobbly named Joe
organizes fellow steelworkers
to fight for a workers paradise
here on earth.
Joe believes in ideals.

A bookkeeper named Edith
is certain she’ll see the Cubs
win the World Series
in her lifetime.
Edith believes in miracles.

An electrician named ****
saves money
to bring his family over from Gdansk.
**** believes in America.

A banker named Leah
knows Ditka will return
and lead the Bears
to another Super Bowl.
Leah believes in nostalgia.

A cantor named Samuel
prays for another 20 years
so he can properly train
his Temple’s replacement.

Samuel believes in tradition.
A high school girl named Sally
refuses to get an abortion.
She knows she carries
something special within her.
Sally believes in life.

A city worker named Mazie
ceaselessly prays
for her incarcerated son
doing 10 years at Cook.
Mazie believes in redemption.

A jazzer named Bix
helps to invent a new art form
out of the mist.
Bix believes in creativity.

An architect named Frank
restores the Rookery.
Frank believes in space.

A soldier named Ike
fights wars for democracy.
Ike believes in peace.

A Rabbi named Jesse
sermonizes on Moses.
Jesse believes in liberation.

Somewhere in Chicago
a kid still believes in Shoeless Joe.
The kid believes in
the integrity of the game.

An Imam named Louis
is busy building a nation
within a nation.
Louis believes in
self-determination.

A teacher named Heidi
gives all she has to her students.
She has great expectations for them all.
Heidi believes in the future.

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

This city,
full of cowboys
and wildcatters
is predicated
on a future!

Bang, bang
Shoot em up
Stake the claim
It’s your terrain
Drill the hole
Strike it rich
Top it off
You’re the boss
Take a chance
Watch it wane
Try again
Heavenly gains

Chicago
city of futures
is a Holy Mecca
to all day traders.

Their skin is gray,
hair disheveled,
loud ties and
funny coats,
thumb through
slips of paper
held by nail
chewed hands.
Selling promises
with no derivative value
for out of the money calls
and in the money puts.
Strike is not a labor action
in this city of unionists,
but a speculators mark,
a capitalist wish,
a hedgers bet,
a public debt
and a farmers
fair return.

Indexes for everything.
Quantitative models
that could burst a kazoo.

You know the measure
of everything in Chicago.
But is it truly objective?
Have mathematics banished
subjective intentions,
routing it in fair practice
of market efficiencies,
a kind of scientific absolution?

I heard that there
is a dispute brewing
over the amount of snowfall
that fell on the 1st.

The mayor’s office,
using the official city ruler
measured 22”
of snow on the ground.

The National Weather Service
says it cannot detect more
then 17” of snow.

The mayor thinks
he’ll catch less heat
for the trains that don’t run
the buses that don’t arrive
and the schools that stand empty
with the addition of 5”.

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

Liquidity,
can you place a great lake
into an eyedropper?

Its 20 below
and all liquid things
are solid masses
or a gooey viscosity at best.

Water is frozen everywhere.
But Chi town is still liquid,
flowing faster
then the digital blips
flashing on the walls
of the CBOT.

Dreams
are never frozen in Chicago.
The exchanges trade
without missing a beat.

Trading wet dreams,
the crystallized vapor
of an IPO
pledging a billion points
of Internet access
or raiding the public treasuries
of a central bank’s
huge stores of gold
with currency swaps.

Using the tools
of butterfly spreads
and candlesticks
to achieve the goal.

Short the Russell
or buy the Dow,
go long the
CAC and DAX.
Are you trading in euro’s?
You better be
or soon will.
I know
you’re Chicago,
you’ll trade anything.
WEBS,
Spiders,
and Leaps
are traded here,
along with sweet crude,
North Sea Brent,
plywood and T-Bill futures;
and most importantly
the commodities,
the loam
that formed this city
of broad shoulders.

What about our wheat?
Still whacking and
breadbasket to the world.

Oil,
an important fossil fuel
denominated in
good ole greenbacks.

Porkbellies,
not just hogwash
on the Wabash,
but bacon, eggs
and flapjacks
are on the menu
of every diner in Jersey
as the “All American.”

Cotton,
our contribution
to the Golden Triangle,
once the global currency
used to enrich a
gentlemen class
of cultured
southern slavers,
now Tommy Hilfiger’s
preferred fabric.

I think he sends it
to Bangkok where
child slaves
spin it into
gold lame'.

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

Soybeans,
the new age substitute
for hamburger
goes great with tofu lasagna.

Corn,
ADM creates ethanol,
they want us to drive cleaner cars.

Cattle,
once driven into this city’s
bloodhouses for slaughter,
now ground into
a billion Big Macs
every year.

When does a seed
become a commodity?
When does a commodity
become a future?
When does a future expire?

You can find the answers
to these questions in Chicago
and find a fortune in a hole in the floor.

Look down into the pits.
Hear the screams of anguish
and profitable delights.

Frenzied men
swarming like a mass
of epileptic ants
atop the worlds largest sugar cube
auger the worlds free markets.

The scene is
more chaotic then
100 Haymarket Square Riots
multiplied by 100
1968 Democratic Conventions.

Amidst inverted anthills,
they scurry forth and to
in distinguished
black and red coats.

Fighting each other
as counterparties
to a life and death transaction.

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

Oil from the Sultan of Brunei,
Yen from the land of Hitachi,
Long Bonds from the Fed,
nickel from Quebec,
platinum and palladium
from Siberia,
FTSE’s from London
and crewel cane from Havana
circle these pits.

Tijuana,
Shanghai
and Istanbul's
best traders
are only half as good
as the average trader in Chicago.

Chicago,
this hog butcher to the world,
specializes in packaging and distribution.

Men in blood soaked smocks,
still count the heads
entering the gates of the city.

Their handiwork
is sent out on barges
and rail lines as frozen packages
of futures
waiting for delivery
to an anonymous counterparty
half a world away.

This nation’s hub
has grown into the
premier purveyor
to the world;
along all the rivers,
highways,
railways
and estuaries
it’s tentacles reach.

5.
Sandburg’s Chicago,
is a city of the world’s people.

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

Nordic stoicism,
Eastern European orthodoxy
and Afro-American
calypso vibrations
are three of many cords
strumming the strings
of Chicago.

Sandburg’s Chicago,
if you wrote forever
you would only scratch its surface.

People wait for trains
to enter the city from O’Hare.
Frozen tears
lock their eyes
onto distant skyscrapers,
solid chunks
of snot blocks their nose
and green icicles of slime
crust mustaches.
They fight to breathe.

Sandburg’s Chicago
is The Land of Lincoln,
Savior of the Union,
protector of the Republic.
Sent armies
of sons and daughters,
barges, boxcars,
gunboats, foodstuffs,
cannon and shot
to raze the south
and stamp out succession.

Old Abe’s biography
are still unknown volumes to me.
I must see and read the great words.
You can never learn enough;
but I’ve been to Washington
and seen the man’s memorial.
The Free World’s 8th wonder,
guarded by General Grant,
who still keeps an eye on Richmond
and a hand on his sword.

Through this American winter
Abe ponders.
The vista he surveys is dire and tragic.

Our sitting President
impeached
for lying about a *******.

Party partisans
in the senate are sworn and seated.
Our Chief Justice,
adorned with golden bars
will adjudicate the proceedings.
It is the perfect counterpoint
to an ageless Abe thinking
with malice toward none
and charity towards all,
will heal the wounds
of the nation.

Abe our granite angel,
Chicago goes on,
The Union is strong!


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

According to
the local forecast
its minus 9
going up to
6 today.

The lake,
a golden pillow of clouds
is frozen in time.

I marvel
at the ancients ones
resourcefulness
and how
they mastered
these extreme elements.

Past, present and future
has no meaning
in the Citadel
of the Prairie today.

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

Stepping into
the hotel lobby
the concierge
with oil smooth hair,
perfect tie
and English lilt
impeccably asks,
“Do you know where you are going Sir?
Can I give you a map?”

He hands me one of Chicago.
I see he recently had his nails done.
He paints a green line
along Whacker Drive and says,
“turn on Jackson, LaSalle, Wabash or Madison
and you’ll get to where you want to go.”
A walk of 14 or 15 blocks from Streeterville-
(I start at The Chicago White House.
They call it that because Hillary Rodham
stays here when she’s in town.
Its’ also alleged that Stedman
eats his breakfast here
but Opra
has never been seen
on the premises.
I wonder how I gained entry
into this place of elite’s?)
-down into the center of The Loop.

Stepping out of the hotel,
The Doorman
sporting the epaulets of a colonel
on his corporate winter coat
and furry Cossack hat
swaddling his round black face
accosts me.

The skin of his face
is flaking from
the subzero windburn.

He asks me
with a gapped toothy grin,
“Can I get you a cab?”
“No I think I’ll walk,” I answer.
“Good woolen hat,
thick gloves you should be alright.”
He winks and lets me pass.

I step outside.
The Windy City
flings stabbing cold spears
flying on wings of 30-mph gusts.
My outside hardens.
I can feel the freeze
deepen
into my internalness.
I can’t be sure
but inside
my heart still feels warm.
For how long
I cannot say.

I commence
my walk
among the spires
of this great city,
the vertical leaps
that anchor the great lake,
holding its place
against the historic
frigid assault.

The buildings’ sway,
modulating to the blows
of natures wicked blasts.

It’s a hard imposition
on a city and its people.

The gloves,
skullcap,
long underwear,
sweater,
jacket
and overcoat
not enough
to keep the cold
from penetrating
the person.

Like discerning
the layers of this city,
even many layers,
still not enough
to understand
the depth of meaning
of the heart
of this heartland city.

Sandburg knew the city well.
Set amidst groves of suburbs
that extend outward in every direction.
Concentric circles
surround the city.
After the burbs come farms,
Great Plains, and mountains.
Appalachians and Rockies
are but mere molehills
in the city’s back yard.
It’s terra firma
stops only at the sea.
Pt. Barrow to the Horn,
many capes extended.

On the periphery
its appendages,
its extremities,
its outward extremes.
All connected by the idea,
blown by the incessant wind
of this great nation.
The Windy City’s message
is sent to the world’s four corners.
It is a message of power.
English the worlds
common language
is spoken here,
along with Ebonics,
Espanol,
Mandarin,
Czech,
Russian,
Korean,
Arabic,
Hindi­,
German,
French,
electronics,
steel,
cars,
cartoons,
rap,
sports­,
movies,
capital,
wheat
and more.

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

He heard them all,
he understood
with great precision
to the finest tolerances
of a lathe workers micrometer.

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

He understood
the working mans day,
the learned treatises
of university chairs,
the endless tomes
of the city’s
great libraries,
the lost languages
of the ancient ones,
the secret codes
of abstract art,
the impact of architecture,
the street dialects and idioms
of everymans expression of life.

All fighting for life,
trying to build a life,
a new life
in this modern world.

Walking across
the Michigan Avenue Bridge
I see the Wrigley Building
is neatly carved,
catty cornered on the plaza.

I wonder if Old Man Wrigley
watched his barges
loaded with spearmint
and double-mint
move out onto the lake
from one of those Gothic windows
perched high above the street.

Would he open a window
and shout to the men below
to quit slaking and work harder
or would he
between the snapping sound
he made with his mouth
full of his chewing gum
offer them tickets
to a ballgame at Wrigley Field
that afternoon?

Would the men below
be able to understand
the man communing
from such a great height?

I listen to a man
and woman conversing.
They are one step behind me
as we meander along Wacker Drive.

"You are in Chicago now.”
The man states with profundity.
“If I let you go
you will soon find your level
in this city.
Do you know what I mean?”

No I don’t.
I think to myself.
What level are you I wonder?
Are you perched atop
the transmission spire
of the Hancock Tower?

I wouldn’t think so
or your ears would melt
from the windburn.

I’m thinking.
Is she a kept woman?
She is majestically clothed
in fur hat and coat.
In animal pelts
not trapped like her,
but slaughtered
from farms
I’m sure.

What level
is he speaking of?

Many levels
are evident in this city;
many layers of cobbled stone,
Pennsylvania iron,
Hoosier Granite
and vertical drops.

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

What is
his intention?
Is it a warning
of a broken affair?
A pending pink slip?
Advise to an addict
refusing to adhere
to a recovery regimen?

What is his level anyway?
Is he so high and mighty,
Higher and mightier
then this great city
which we are all a part of,
which we all helped to build,
which we all need
in order to keep this nation
the thriving democratic
empire it is?

This seditious talk!

3.
The Loop’s El
still courses through
the main thoroughfares of the city.

People are transported
above the din of the street,
looking down
on the common pedestrians
like me.

Super CEO’s
populating the upper floors
of Romanesque,
Greek Revivalist,
New Bauhaus,
Art Deco
and Post Nouveau
Neo-Modern
Avant-Garde towers
are too far up
to see me
shivering on the street.

The cars, busses,
trains and trucks
are all covered
with the film
of rock salt.

Salt covers
my bootless feet
and smudges
my cloths as well.

The salt,
the primal element
of the earth
covers everything
in Chicago.

It is the true level
of this city.

The layer
beneath
all layers,
on which
everything
rests,
is built,
grows,
thrives
then dies.
To be
returned again
to the lower
layers
where it can
take root
again
and grow
out onto
the great plains.

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

All things
found its way here
through the canals
and back bays
of the world’s
greatest lakes.

All roads,
rails and
air routes
begin and
end here.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow
got a *** rap.
It did not start the fire,
we did.

We lit the torch
that flamed
the city to cinders.
From a pile of ash
Chicago rose again.

Forever Chicago!
Forever the lamp
that burns bright
on a Great Lake’s
western shore!

Chicago
the beacon
sends the
message to the world
with its windy blasts,
on chugging barges,
clapping trains,
flying tandems,
T1 circuits
and roaring jets.

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

He knew
the rhythm of life
the people walked to.
The tools they used,
the dreams they dreamed
the songs they sang,
the things they built,
the things they loved,
the pains that hurt,
the motives that grew,
the actions that destroyed
the prayers they prayed,
the food they ate
their moments of death.

Sandburg knew
the layers of the city
to the depths
and windy heights
I cannot fathom.

The Blues
came to this city,
on the wing
of a chirping bird,
on the taps
of a rickety train,
on the blast
of an angry sax
rushing on the wind,
on the Westend blitz
of Pop's brash coronet,
on the tink of
a twinkling piano
on a paddle-wheel boat
and on the strings
of a lonely man’s guitar.

Walk into the clubs,
tenements,
row houses,
speakeasies
and you’ll hear the Blues
whispered like
a quiet prayer.

Tidewater Blues
from Virginia,
Delta Blues
from the lower
Mississippi,
Boogie Woogie
from Appalachia,
Texas Blues
from some Lone Star,
Big Band Blues
from Kansas City,
Blues from
Beal Street,
Jelly Roll’s Blues
from the Latin Quarter.

Hell even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

Its all here.
It ended up here
and was sent away
on the winds of westerly blows
to the ear of an eager world
on strong jet streams
of simple melodies
and hard truths.

A broad
shouldered woman,
a single mother stands
on the street
with three crying babes.
Their cloths
are covered
in salt.
She pleads
for a break,
praying
for a new start.
Poor and
under-clothed
against the torrent
of frigid weather
she begs for help.
Her blond hair
and ****** features
suggests her
Scandinavian heritage.
I wonder if
she is related to Sandburg
as I walk past
her on the street.
Her feet
are bleeding
through her
canvass sneakers.
Her babes mouths
are zipped shut
with frozen drivel
and mucous.

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

The Blues
will forever live in her.
As I turn the corner
to walk the Miracle Mile
I see her engulfed
in a funnel cloud of salt,
snow and bits
of white paper,
swirling around her
and her children
in an angry
unforgiving
maelstrom.

The family
begins to
dissolve
like a snail
sprinkled with salt;
and a mother
and her children
just disappear
into the pavement
at the corner
of Dearborn,
in Chicago.

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
Tatiana Nov 2014
I'm suffocating.
But I don't need your help,
I can handle my throat closing,
no don't call 911,
there's no reason to.

I'm choking.
But I don't need your help,
I can handle the mucus that blocks my throat,
I can spit it up just fine,
so just keep on walking.

I'm coughing.
But I don't need your help,
I can handle myself doubled over in pain,
with my chest hurting as I try to sit up straight,
so just ignore me hacking up a lung.

I'm breathing.
But I don't need your help,
I can handle hyperventilation without my inhaler,
I don't have to breathe properly to live,
so thanks for just leaving me on the floor.

I'm dying.
But I don't need your help,
it's not like I have no energy to get my inhaler,
you can totally just run out of the room panicking,
it's not like i'm scared too or anything.

I'm angry.
And for some reason,
you can't figure out why.
So leave me alone.
I'm fine now.
I can handle myself.
I don't need your help.
I'm changing the caption 4 years later because it was very angry and I don't carry that same level of anger anymore towards that person.
Except in reference to asthma
Then I'm quite angry
Asthma *****
CK Baker Mar 5
Pilsner cap switch blade
tie dye and piccolo
greasers and freaks
with platform feet
muscling in
on the bow legged hoofer
tapping
Bursey Hill Tram

Diamond tuft console
mullets n' ****
angels and saints
(unrestrained)
appropriately trimmed
as 3 mile wreaks havoc
on the nickers and
fighters of penn

Bangers and home boys
hookahs and sheiks
hostile geeks
breaking knuckles and jaws
on the caners and skinners
who are locked
and grinding the root

Desert boot foothills
boardwalk jeans
rainbows and sea fairs
and psychedelic dreams
(the platinum queens
jamming it hard
on the jade room floor)

8 tracks
and fender packs
the hottest summer days
psychedelic haze
center hall, graffiti scrawl
(sinister yet refined!)
covering the subtle
yet striking third ****

Brunswick cues
and red man chew
350 blocks
(on a solid Chevy - stock)
monkeys and beatles
and laugh in scenes
pastel dreams
from the long and coveted
velvet scroll
Shaine Fraz Jul 2017
He's known to flip a bat on occasion
it's blatant
-- radiating cool kid,
a mutant?

holy cardinal like:
who bare rib?
fresh cut new did,
said -- who is this?

"slow tread, wrangled thee
there's a 4x4 in his 20/20,
he asked -- double play?
the kid ran away!"

kept pace enough for super stardom baring set backs he's set,
lack the vision but he's starting running back,

ran back to the house of worship,
***** housed adolescence,
children they're just victims
with an unnatural talents,

ravenous,
an unnatural predator,
apex,
believed in --

shot blocks and safe *** fingers latex,
washed him from his feet to my index,
He's speechless,
forgiven,

it's blatant,
coverage hidden,
and what's written is
-- this too shall pass,

as he quoted scripture,
his hand on the right shoulder,
Nearer,
he gets nearer,

meter,
100 meter,
still not older or sober,
And too young to know what ******* was

but,
one 'hell' of an athlete,
sadly
his pastor praised his ministries,
monstrosities.
© 2017 by S Fraz All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of S Fraz
L B Aug 2018
Pinto?

No, not the wild-spirited, color-splotched mare
with mane streaming like flames-thrown
behind in the wind
Taking desert inclines
with scuffing hooves on rock
catching her balance in mesquite
curbing?
The sage, dust
All
that nature throws in its pathway to knowledge
toward treachery of crosswalks?

“P-l-e-a-s-e  don't slow down!
Stop signs--?
”No!
Just keep going!
Don't slow down now!”

“They'll hear us coming
3 blocks away!”

Pinto?
Clogged carburetor--?
No one much-mentioned
rear-end inferno reputation??
A mere twinge in my signature
Woman-without-a-clue

“Hey, it runs, right?
Gets where we're goin'?”

Kids duck in back seat
so as not to be seen
In the cloud of smoke
We make our approach

Hiss Spitter, Belch, Pop
and--

BANG!

--Like a gunshot

Kids take cover
on street, in backseat
duck down
so not to be noticed...

“Oh Ma!  
MA!!!
Not right here!
Farther down!”

...so not to be seen
...by friends that matter...
in this ride
from hell!
Backfiring Beast--

“Friends”
skitter away
from what will emerge from the smoke and fumes
of high-risk-situation

Kids spill out through jammed door
to unexpected accolades
onto equality's curb
of laughter  
Public school's
wake of exhaust and relief

I drive mercifully away


Start of another school day
True. I swear!  Had this car for a short while in the early 80s when I went back to college.  It met its demise in a front-end collision.  Woman with no license ran a stop sign, plowing me into a utility pole.  The Pinto's reputation for fiery explosions burst across my mind.  I couldn't help but note the clicking hissing sound.  No time to think of my banged-up head.  Door was jammed, but window still rolled down, so I climbed through it in a skirt, no less, and ran.  Car was totaled.  If the collision had been just a little farther back, I might not be writing about it.
Arke Aug 2018
Joy
you asked me to write a poem
about joy
a difficult request for someone
who has forgotten what it means
and at times
forgotten where to find it
I started thinking of life's tiny joys
warm coffee
soft cheese
mountain views
hot tub kisses
long hikes, hand in hand
running into a warm ocean
and I wondered if that was enough
if I could string together all
the tiny moments, end to end
if they would create something
quantifiable enough to be described
as joy?
or if my joy
like the wings of a raven or
jagged blocks of ice or
fields of succulents
would always be better viewed
at a safe distance and never touched but
you allowed me to see your joy and
for a moment I felt like it was tangible
you let me hold it with care
I will always be grateful
that you have shown me
what it looks like
I keep it near my heart now
by my closest memories
because your joy is my gift and
my joy
will always remain with you
RK Aug 2018
I was thinking about you and reminding myself not to interfere but it’s so hard not to, when I love you.

Still, that gives me no special rights so I ended up minding my own business.
The whole saga unfolding before my eyes I tried to reach you fibrationally. I sent you love and kind wishes and many blessings
All the while realizing the dangerous situation you had encountered.
I saw you  losing your vitality!
I prayed this prayer for you !

Move away from the toxic atmosphere. That cut throat, manipulating back stabbing, "you scratch my back,  I’ll scratch yours, if you want to succeed in this life, attitude."

That environment is not good for you...

Money isn't everything! Pray tell me, if you lose your soul what good is the whole world?  It will be empty, destructive and counter productive.  If you say you need more you tell yourself a lie, you already have everything. Why create a lack, a void, where none exists? I watch you grow paler thinner-the light in your soul  dimmer, a bare glimmer of the one you truly are. The dis-ease is spreading like wild fire burning you out mercilessly, eating your liver. Destroying your beautiful vigour.  

I see it so clearly, will you hear, will you hear?

You see, I remember you! Yes, you had everything. Love, kindness and empathy, all these beautiful soul qualities. You knew how to share, care and be fair.
Now you are empty with lots of money, you have nothing and everything. What a ****** dilemma!

The degrees hard earned, and book knowledge but nothing really of true value, no equilibrium, balance.  
Too much of everything! And you told me you are full of despair. You laid you're heart and soul bare, a circle outside the square, yes I heard you.
You've travelled far, drive a fancy car. Nothing wrong with that, the world is your oyster.
Though in the grand scheme of things, do those  things really count for anything.  Albeit money itself isn't the real issue here. It's the belief that without it you are nothing. The words nothing and everything are so misunderstood! We all have to work out this stupid and harsh conundrum.

You included!

Thats if you want to know the true meaning of success, of being blessed, that is...

Can you hear, can you hear, can you hear?
The prayer answered ...

Oh! I hear, I hear! loud and crystal clear.
I now know, and of this you can be sure. It's taken a long time to work it all out. Now I'm here, and close enough to understanding the conundrum.

So yes,  I hear!

And I understand The dilemma! Not left or right,  but the centre. The circle squared if you like! I had to go through all the fear, oh! the terrible fear to find the truth. The courage to work though the pain the suffering.

I remember when I started out.  I didn't fit in at first.  I was so innocent, a lamb to the slaughter.  I became so competitive. I fought, driven by ambition, t'was like an addiction. I wanted more, worn down to the floor accumulating, name, position of authority, the status. The friends, the enemies! Who is who? Trying to figure it out was horrendous.  I lived in dread, under the threat I'd lose it all. The sleepless nights, the reflux, anxiety,  the psoriases, the fall.
But I kept climbing! Never staying too long on and any one rung, moving higher and higher. The ladder was made from steel, the building made from concrete blocks, while I, was born of only mere flesh and blood, a mortal being going under. Saved by grace, seeing my beautiful being, falling asunder.  


The awakening!

I'm clearing the slate of all the confusion, delusion, and getting to the emptiness where I now reside alone, not born only of flesh and blood,  but of spirit, of good. With God in my soul, I now know
the glory and wonder of the world.

Peace
Hmm, I'm not sure if this is suitable to post but I'm posting anyway. It's a dialogue in my head I had this morning. A friend and I have discussed these problems and issues and this morning I j found myself thinking of this person and marvelling how this dear one  came through such a rough period in life. All these musings are based on all the suffering the person went through!
Peace
William Eberlein Feb 2013
It is the shadow
that walks beside you.

It is the boogeyman
that waits under your bed.

It is the monster in the closet
that watches silently as you sleep.

It is the shiver down your spine
that leaves the air around you cold.

It is the "tick" of the clock
that wakes you up in the middle of the night.

It is the lonely howl of the wolf in a frozen winter,
that echos through the dark dead forest.

It is the silence of the tall mountain
that blocks all light from the world.

It is the lasting quiet of the room at night
that makes you pull the covers over your head.

It is your ultimate fear.
And it never leaves your side.

It is your harbinger
that will deliver you
into a cold
everlasting
black.
bulletcookie Sep 2018
waking morning comes home
arising to dawn's dimmer light
where curtained clouds roam
off maritime journey's might

rattles from tail's end of evening
******* this dreamer's calm
prompts morning's early weaning
from slumber acres balm

turn these covers open eyed
let soft fantasies vaporize
tuned to moment's assembling blocks
auguring dayspring's destined docks

-cec
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