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RAJ NANDY Jul 2017
Dear Readers, I have tried to cover the salient features of this True Story in free flowing verse mainly with end rhymes. If you read it loud, you can hear the chimes! Due to the short attention span of my readers I had to cut short this long story, and conclude with the
Golden Era of Hollywood by stretching it up to the 1950's only. When TV began to challenge the Big Screen Cinema seriously! I have used only a part of my notes here. Kindly read the entire poem and don't hesitate to know many interesting facts - which I also did not know! I wish there was a provision for posting a few interesting photographs for you here. Best wishes, - Raj Nandy, New Delhi.  

                 THE LEGEND OF HOLLYWOOD :
                        THE AMERICAN  DREAM
                             BY RAJ NANDY

Since the earliest days, optical toys, shadow shows, and ‘magic
lanterns’, had created the illusion of motion.
This concept was first described by Mark Roget in 1824 as  
the 'persistent of vision'.
Giving impetus to the development of big screen cinema with its
close-ups, capturing all controlled and subtle expressions!
The actors were no longer required to shout out their parts with
exaggerated actions as on the Elizabethan Stage.
Now even a single tear drop could get noticed easily by the entire
movie audience!
With the best scene being included and edited after a few retakes.
To Thomas Edison and his able assistant William Rogers we owe the invention of Kinetoscope, the first movie camera.
On the grounds of his West Orange, New Jersey laboratory, Edison
built his first movie studio called the ‘Black Maria’.   (1893)
He also purchased a string of patents related to motion picture
Camera; forming the Edison Trust, - a cartel that took control of
the Film Industry entire!

Fort Lee, New Jersey:
On a small borough on the opposite bank of the Hudson River lay
the deserted Fort Lee.
Here scores of film production crews descended armed with picture Cameras, on this isolated part of New Jersey!
In 1907 Edison’s company came there to shoot a short silent film –
‘Rescue From an Eagle’s Nest’,
Which featured for the first time the actor and director DW Griffith.
The independent Chaplin Film Company built the first permanent
movie studio in 1910 in Fort Lee.
While some of the biggest Hollywood studios like the Universal,
MGM, and 20th Century Fox, had their roots in Fort Lee.
Some of the famous stars of the silent movie era included ‘Fatty’
Arbuckle, Will Rogers, Mary Pickford, Dorothy and Lillian Gish,
Lionel Barrymore, Rudolph Valentine and Pearl White.
In those days there were no reflectors and electric arch lights.
So movies were made on rooftops to capture the bright sunlight!
During unpredictable bad weather days, filming had to be stopped
despite the revolving stage which was made, -
To rotate and capture the sunlight before the lights atarted to fade!

Shift from New Jersey to West Coast California:
Now Edison who held the patents for the bulb, phonograph, and the Camera, had exhibited a near monopoly;
On the production, distribution, and exhibition of the movies which made this budding industry to shift to California from
New Jersey!
California with its natural scenery, its open range, mountains, desert, and snow country, had the basic ingredients for the movie industry.
But most importantly, California had bright Sunshine for almost
365 days of the year!
While eight miles away from Hollywood lay the port city of Los Angeles with its cheap labour.

                        THE RISE  OF  HOLLYWOOD
It was a real estate tycoon Harvey Wilcox and his wife Daeida from
Kansas, who during the 1880s founded ‘Hollywood’ as a community for like-minded temperate followers.
It is generally said that Daeida gave the name Hollywood perhaps
due to the areas abundant red-berried shrubs also known as
California Holly.
Spring blossoms around and above the Hollywood Hills with its rich variety,  gave it a touch of paradise for all to see !
Hollywood was incorporated as a municipality in 1903, and during
1910 unified with the city of Los Angeles.
While a year later, the first film studio had moved in from New
Jersey, to escape Thomas Edison’s monopoly!    (1911)

In 1913 Cecil B. De Mille and Jesse Lasky, had leased a barn with
studio facilities.
And directed the first feature length film ‘Squaw Man’ in 1914.
Today this studio is home to Hollywood Heritage Museum as we get to see.
The timeless symbol of Hollywood film industry that famous sign on top of Mount Lee, was put up by a real estate developer in 1923.  
This sign had read as ‘’HOLLY WOOD LAND’’ initially.
Despite decades of run-ins with vandals and pranksters, it managed to hang on to its prime location near the summit of the Hollywood Hills.
The last restoration work was carried out in 1978 initiated by Hugh
Hefner of the ******* Magazine.
Those nine white letters 45 feet tall now read ‘HOLLYWOOD’, and has become a landmark and America’s cultural icon, and an evocative symbol for ambition, glamour, and dream.
Forever enticing aspiring actors to flock to Hollywood, hypnotised
by lure of the big screen!

                     GOLDEN AGE OF HOLLYWOOD
The Silent Movie Era which began in 1895, ended in 1935 with the
production of ‘Dance of Virgins’, filmed entirely in the island of Bali.
The first Sound film ‘The Jazz Singer’ by Warner Bros. was made with a Vitaphone sound-on-disc technology.  (October 1927)
Despite the Great Depression of the 1930s, this decade along with the 1940s have been regarded by some as Hollywood’s Golden Age.
However, I think that this Golden Age includes the decades of the
1940s and the 1950s instead.
When the advent of Television began to challenge the Film Industry
itself !

First Academy Award:
On 16th May 1929 in the Roosevelt Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard,
the First Academy Award presentation was held.
Around 270 people were in attendance, and tickets were priced at
$5 per head.
When the best films of 1927 & 1928 were honored by the Academy
of Motion Production and Sciences, or the AMPS.
Emil Jennings became the best actor, and Janet Gaynor the best actress.
Special Award went to Charlie Chaplin for his contribution to the
silent movie era and for his silent film ‘The Circus’.
While Warren Brothers was commended for making the first talking picture ‘The Jazz Singer’, - also receiving a Special Award!
Now, the origin of the term ‘OSCAR’ has remained disputed.
The Academy adopted this name from 1939 onwards it is stated.
OSCAR award has now become “the stuff dreams are made of”!
It is a gold-plated statuette of a knight 13.5 inches in height, weighing 8.5 pounds, was designed by MGM’s art director Cedric Gibbons.
Annually awarded for honouring and encouraging excellence in all
facets of motion picture production.

Movies During the Great Depression Era (1929-1941):
Musicals and dance movies starring Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers provided escapism and good entertainment during this age.
“Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did. She just did it
backwards and in high heels,” - the Critics had said.
This compatible pair entertained the viewers for almost one and
a half decade.
During the ‘30s, gangster movies were popular starring James Cagey, Humphrey Bogart, and Edward G. Robinson.
While family movies had their popular child artist Shirley Temple.
Swashbuckler films of the Golden Age saw the sword fighting scenes of Douglas Fairbanks and Errol Flynn.
Flynn got idolized playing ‘Robin Hood’, this film got released in
1938 on the big screen!
Story of the American Civil War got presented in the epic ‘Gone With The Wind’ (1939) with Clarke Gable and Vivian Leigh.
This movie received 8 Oscars including the award for the Best Film, - creating a landmark in motion picture’s history!
More serious movies like John Steinbeck’s ‘Grapes of Wrath’ and
John Ford’s  ‘How Green Was My Valley’, were released in 1940 and 1941 respectively.
While the viewers escaped that depressive age to the magical world
of  ‘Wizard of Oz’ with its actress Judy Garland most eagerly!
Let us not forget John Wayne the King of the Westerns, who began
his acting career in the 1930s with his movie ‘The Big Trail’;
He went on to complete 84 films before his career came to an end.
Beginning of the 40s also saw Bob Hope and the crooner Bing Crosby, who entertained the public and also the fighting troops.
For the Second World War (1939-45) had interrupted the Golden Age of Hollywood.
When actors like Henry Fonda, Clarke Gable, James Stewart and
Douglas Fairbanks joined the armed forces temporarily leaving
Few propaganda movies supporting the war efforts were also made.
While landmark movies like ‘Philadelphia Story’, ‘Casablanca’, ‘Citizen Kane’,
‘The Best Years of Our Lives’, were some of the most successful movies of that decade.  (The 1940s)
Now I come towards the end of my Hollywood Story with the decade  of the 1950s, thereby extending the period of Hollywood’s Golden Age.
Since having past the Great Depression and the Second World War,  the Hollywood movie industry truly matured and came of age.

                        HOLLYWOOD  OF  THE  1950s

The decade of the ‘50s was known for its post-war affluence and
choice of leisure time activities.
It was a decade of middle-class values, fast-food restaurants, and
drive-in- movies;
Of ‘baby-boom’, all-electric home, the first credit cards, and new fast moving cars like the Ford, Plymouth, Buick, Hudson, and Chevrolet.
But not forgetting the white racist terrorism in the Southern States!
This era saw the beginning of Cold War, with Eisenhower
succeeding Harry S. Truman as the American President.
But for the film industry, most importantly, what really mattered  
was the advent of the Domestic TV.
When the older viewers preferred to stay at home instead of going
out to the movies.
By 1950, 10.5 million US homes had a television set, and on the
30th December 1953, the first Color TV went on sale!
Film industries used techniques such as Cinemascope, Vista Vision,
and gimmicks like 3-D techniques,
To get back their former movie audience back on their seats!
However, the big scene spectacle films did retain its charm and
Since fantasy epics like ‘The Story of Robin Hood’, and Biblical epics like ‘The Robe’, ‘Quo Vadis’, ‘The Ten Commandments’ and ‘Ben-Hur’, did retain its big screen visual appeal.
‘The Robe’ released on 16th September 1953, was the first film shot
and projected in Cinema Scope;
In which special lenses were used to compress a wide image into a
standard frame and then expanded it again during projection;
Resulting in an image almost two and a half times as high and also as wide, - captivating the viewers imagination!

The idealized portrayal of men and women since the Second World War,
Now failed to satisfy the youth who sought exciting symbols for rebellion.
So Hollywood responded with anti-heroes with stars like James Dean, Marlon Brando, and Paul Newman.
They replaced conventional actors like Tyron Power, Van Johnson, and Robert Taylor to a great extent, to meet the requirement of the age.
Anti-heroines included Ava Gardner, Kim Novak, and Marilyn Monroe with her vibrant *** appeal;
She provided excitement for the new generation with a change of scene.
Themes of rebellion against established authority was present in many Rock and Roll songs,
Including the 1954 Bill Hailey and His Comets’ ‘Rock Around the Clock’.
The era also saw rise to stardom of Elvis Presley the teen heartthrob.
Meeting the youthful aspirations with his songs like ‘Jailhouse Rock’!
I recall the lyrics of this 1957 film ‘Jailhouse Rock’ of my school days, which had featured the youth icon Elvis:
   “The Warden threw a party in the county jail,
     The prison band was there and they began to wail.
     The band was jumping and the joint began to sing,
     You should’ve heard them knocked-out jail bird sing.
     Let’s rock, everybody in the whole cell block……………
     Spider Murphy played the tenor saxophone,
     Little Joe was blowing the slide trombone.
     The drummer boy from Illinois went crash, boom, bang!
     The whole rhythm section was the Purple Gang,
      Let's rock,.................... (Lyrics of the song.)

Rock and Roll music began to tear down color barriers, and Afro-
American musicians like Chuck Berry and Little Richard became
very popular!
Now I must caution my readers that thousands of feature films got  released during this eventful decade in Hollywood.
To cover them all within this limited space becomes an impossible
task, which may kindly be understood !
However, I shall try to do so in a summarized form as best as I could.

Top Ten Year-Wise hit films chronologically are: Cinderella (1950),
Quo Vadis, The Greatest Show on Earth, Peter Pan, Rear Window,
Lady and the *****, Ten Commandments, Bridge on the River
Kwai, South Pacific, and Ben-Hur of 1959.

However Taking The Entire Decade Of 1950s Collectively,
The Top Films Get Rated As Follows Respectively:
The Ten Commandments, followed by Lady and the *****, Peter Pan, Sleeping Beauty, Bridge on the River Kwai, Around the World in Eighty Days, This is Cinerama, The Greatest Show on Earth, Rear Window, South Pacific, The Robe, Giant, Seven Wonders of the World, White Christmas, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, Sayonara, Demetrius and the Gladiator, Peyton Place, Some Like It Hot, Quo Vadis, and Auntie Mame.

Film Debuts By Rising Stars During The 1950s :
The decade of the ‘50s saw a number of famous film stars making
their first appearance.
There was Peter Sellers in ‘The Black Rose’, Marlon Brando in
‘The Men’, and actress Sophia Loren in ‘Toto Tarzan’.
Following year saw Charles Bronson in ‘You Are in the Navy Now’,
Audrey Hepburn in ‘Our Wild Oats’, and Grace Kelly, the future
Princess of Monaco, in her first film ‘Fourteen Hours’. (1951)
While **** Brigitte Bardot appeared in 1952 movie ‘Crazy for Love’; and 1953 saw Steve Mc Queen in ‘******* The Run’.
Jack Lemon, Paul Newman, and Omar Sharif featured in films
during 1954.
The following year saw Clint Eastwood, Shirley Mc Lean, Walter
Matthau, and Jane Mansfield, all of whom the audience adored.
The British actor Michael Cain appeared in 1956; also Elvis Presley
the youth icon in ‘Love Me Tender’ and as the future Rock and Roll
In 1957 came Sean Connery, followed by Jack Nicholson, Christopher Plummer, and Vanessa Redgrave.
While the closing decade of the ‘50s saw James Coburn, along with
director, script writer, and producer Steven Spielberg, make their
debut appearance.

Deaths During The 1950s: This decade also saw the death of actors
like Humphrey Bogart, Tyron Power and Errol Flynn.
Including the death of producer and director of epic movies the
renowned Cecil B. De Mille!
Though I have conclude the Golden Age of Hollywood with the 50’s Decade,
The glitz and glamour of its Oscar Awards continue even to this day.
With its red carpet and lighted marquee appeal and fashion display!

From Fort Lee of New Jersey we have travelled west to Hollywood,
From the silent movie days to the first ‘talking picture’ with Warren
Bros’ film ‘The Jazz Singer’.  (06 Oct 1927)
On 31st July 1928 for the first time the audience heard the MGM’s
mascot Leo’s mighty roar!
While in July 1929 Warren Bros’ first all-talking and all- Technicolor
Film appeared titled - ‘On With The Show’.
Austrian born Hedy Lamarr shocked the audience appearing **** in a Czechoslovak film ‘Ecstasy’!  (1933)
She fled from her husband to join MGM, becoming a star of the
‘40s and the ‘50s.
The ‘Private Life of Henry VII’ became the first British film to win the  American Academy Award.  (1933)
On 11Dec 1934, FOX released ‘Bright Eyes’ with Shirley Temple,
who became the first Child artist to win this Award!
While in 1937 Walt Disney released the first full animated feature
film titled - ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarf ‘.
The British film director Alfred Hitchcock who came to
Hollywood later;
Between 1940 and 1947, made great thrillers like 'Rebecca', ‘Notorious’, ‘Rear Window’, and ‘Dial M for ******’.
But he never won an Oscar as a Director!

This award began in 1944 by the Foreign Correspondence Association at
the 20th Century Fox Studio.
To award critically acclaimed films and television shows, by awarding a
Scroll initially.
Later a Golden Globe was made on a pedestal, with a film strip around it.
In 1955 the Cecil B. De Mille Award was created, with De Mille as its first

In 1959 The National Academy of Recording and Sciences sponsored the
First Grammy Award for music recorded during 1958.
When Frank Sinatra won for his album cover ‘Only The Lonely’, but he
did not sing.
Among the 28 other categories there was Ella Fitzgerald, and Count Basie
for his musical Dance Band Performance.
There was Kingston Trio’s song ‘Tom Dooly’, and the ‘Chipmunk Song’,
which brings back nostalgic memories of my school days!


Challenge Faced by the Movie Industry:
Now the challenge before the Movie Industry was how to adjust to the
rapidly changing conditions created by the growing TV Industry.
Resulting in loss of revenue, with viewers getting addicted to
their Domestic TV screen most conveniently!

The late 1950s saw two studios REPUBLIC and the RKO go out of business!
REPUBLIC from 1935- ‘59 based in Los Angeles, developed the careers of
John Wayne and Roy Rogers, and specializing in the Westerns.
RKO was one of the Big Five Studios of Hollywood along with Paramount,
MGM, 20th Century Fox, and Warner Brothers in those days.

RKO Studio which begun with Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers in the ‘30s,
included actress Katherine Hepburn who holds the record for four Oscars
even to this day;
And later had Robert Mitchum and Carry Grant under an agreement.
But in 1948, RKO Studio came under the control Howard Hughes the
temperamental Industrialist.
Soon the scandal drive and litigation prone RKO Studio closed, while
other Big Four Studios had managed to remain afloat!

Paramount Studio split into two separate companies in 1950.
Its Theatre chain later merged with ABC Radio & Television Network;
And they created an independent Production/Distribution Network.
Bing Crosby and Bob Hope had been Paramount’s two biggest stars.
Followed by actors like Alan Ladd, William Holden, Jerry Lewis, Dean
Martin, Charlton Heston, and Dorothy Lamour.
They also had the producer/director Cecil B. De Mille producing high-
grossing Epics like ‘Samson & Delilah’ and ‘The Ten Commandments’.
Also the movie maker Hal Wallis, who discovered Burt Lancaster and
Elvis Presley - two great talents!

Cinema Scope became FOX’s most successful technological innovation
with its hit film ‘The Robe’. (1953)
Its Darryl Zanuck had observed during the early ‘50s, that audience  
were more interested in escapist entertainments mainly.
So he turned to FOX to musicals, comedies, and adventure stories.
Biggest stars of FOX were Gregory Peck & Susan Hayward; also
stars like Victor Mature, Anne Baxter, and Richard Wind Mark.
Not forgetting Marilyn Monroe in her Cinema Scope Box Office hit
movie - ‘How to Marry a Millionaire’, which was also shown on
prime time TV, as a romantic comedy film of 1953.

During 1950 the studio was mainly a family managed company with
three brothers Harry, Albert, and Jack Warren.
To meet the challenges of that period, Warren Bros. released most of
its actors like James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart, Oliver de Havilland, -
Along with few others from their long-term contractual commitments;
Retaining only Errol Flynn, and Ronald Regan who went on to become
the future President.
Like 20th Century Fox, Warren Bros switched to musicals, comedies,
and adventure movies, with Doris Day as its biggest musical star.
The studio also entered into short term agreements with Gary Copper,
John Wayne, Gregory Peck, Patricia Neal, and Random Scott.
Warren Bros also became the first major studio to invest in 3-D
production of films, scoring a big hit with its 3-D  suspense thriller
‘House of Wax’ in 1953.

MINOR STUDIOS were mainly three, - United Artists, Columbia, and
The Universal.
They did not own any theatre chain, and specialized in low-budgeted
‘B’ Movies those days.
Now to cut a long story short it must be said, that Hollywood finally
did participate in the evolution of Television industry, which led to
their integration eventually.
Though strategies involving hardware development and ownership of
broadcast outlets remained unsuccessful unfortunately.
However, Hollywood did succeed through program supply like prime-
time series, and made-for-TV films for the growing TV market making
things more colorful!
Thus it could be said that the TV industry provided the film industry
with new opportunities,  laying the groundwork for its diversification
and concentration;
That characterized the entertainment industry during the latter half  
of our previous century.
I must now confess that I have not visited the movie theatre over the last
two decades!
I watch movies on my big screen TV and my Computer screen these days.
Old classical movies are all available on ‘You Tube’ for me, and I can watch
them any time whenever I am free!
Thanks for reading patiently, - Raj Nandy.
Robert Ronnow Sep 2015
Science can't save you, neither can religion,
at least Popper and Niebuhr, philosophers and poets,
are entertainers, which is why actors and athletes
are paid so much. Thanks for the summaries.
I was teaching Shakespeare's 92nd ridiculous sonnet
to my student who lays blacktop in the off season
Shakespeare bellyaching about dying without her love
a feeling foreign to a modern adolescent sensibility
although many teens are pretty far gone searching
for their mothers or fathers in their dazed lovers' eyes.
Which is why we call it "the wound that never heals."
Or the lesion that's always lengthening. And bleeding.

Muslim fundamentalists and their Christian counterparts
are a mystery to me. Pews and prayer rugs, the airless
indoor environment of religious worship, reading
scriptures, hypnotized by hymns and fainting from staring
at candles through stained glass windows, almost certain
the preacher is faking his certainty about the afterlife.
It's not my problem. A more immediate concern:
receding gums and tooth extractions, swollen joints,
poor lubrication and circulation, wave after wave
of viral infection, the occasional antibiotic-resistant
bacterial attack, usually urinary, and who knows
what internal organs are dividing and conquering
without mercy or cease, i.e. the wound that never heals.

It is wise not to overvalue your continued existence,
good not to be innumerate, unable to compare
a mere 80 years with say 6.0 x 109 or all of time
(to date) times the multiverse. Conversely,
it is interesting all of space and most of history is contained
in your little mind (realizing of course it's just a map
of the cosmos not the cosmos itself, or is it?). I'm
unable to wrestle free, tongue in that cavity
and locked in my memories, so separate and disparate
from the biomass in the crosswalks, even my spouse.
Alone, so alone, even your doctor can only devote
limited thought to your situational mortality through
the redress of poetry - also a wound that never heals.

Snow for eternity, that's what this February's been.
All to the good, for someone it's the final February
so enjoy it to the extent you can. By that I mean joy.
Joy at birth. Joy at death. All joy. All times. Anyway.
That was Shakespeare's message: even tragedies are comedies.
May, a Buddhist, chants each morning.
Her husband, Marc, who's Jewish, plays league tennis.
Their son, Aaron, will soon make Eagle scout.
How does it relate to your wound that never heals?
Luck runs out. For D.H. Lawrence in New Mexico
or Ulysses S. Grant in Ohio or Yasujiro Ozu in
Tokyo or Satyajit Ray in Bombay or Rabindranath
Tagore in Bangalore or at the Battle of the Atlantic in the Azores.

The night is a poultice, winter or summer solstice.
My anonymity will not affect the anomie ghettoside
seeing for myself how season by season
vacations and accomplishments accumulate, late in life
and early on, sunrise over mountains or moonrise over Bronx.
Masturbator, prisoner of war. Hospice of the Holy Roman Empire.
Numerous blue notes: the 3 flat, 7 flat, 5 flat,
the 6 flat and the 2 flat too. I don't get
what Wallace Stevens means by imagination.
When groundhog shows up as a totem, there is opportunity
to explore the mystery of death without dying.
This then is the purpose of purposelessness (and of eating less)!
Now what about that wound that never heals.

The Skeptical Observer column in Scientific American
was somewhat alarming when he accepted a paranormal
explanation for how his wife's grandfather's inoperable
transistor radio played music from its hiding spot
in his sock drawer on, and only on, their wedding day.
Now I'll have to believe my father (or mother!) is watching me
perform private ****** acts with (or without) partners
or that they could even know my thoughts. Or aliens
are attending our committee meetings and making
perfectly reasonable decisions given the available information
and the world is rotating just fine without humans.
These possibilities - angels, ghosts, aliens - are better
than holocaust and genocide. In this way,
and only in this way, does doom become endurable.
The wound that never heals in the end is all you'll feel.
EC Pollick Feb 2013
Love is a farce.
A Marketing ploy.
To make your heart beat faster
Your dreams dream bigger
And to raise you up
So that everything below
looks minuscule and meaningless in comparison.

And to delude you
Into thinking
You could have that someday too.
Amanda Fogerty Feb 2013
So I heard once that there’s always
some gnarly looking carrot
in every bag of carrots
and you’re supposed make a wish on it
if you get it.
But I didn’t have a bag of veggies
I had a jar of Gumby and Poki
shaped gummies.

Finally the day came when there
were only two Gumbys left.
One was bent in half and
smashed together
and the other looked as all the rest had.
I pulled out the sad little gummy and
made a wish
like it was some ugly carrot.
I wished my crush would kiss me,
And giddily I walked to a coffee house
because I was hoping he would be there
even though I sternly told myself that
he had no reason to be there.
I found the coffee house closed and knew
my wish wasn’t happening that night.

I talked with a friend about my woes
and she confessed her heartache.
We smiled and laughed and died
just a little on the inside.
We had hoped that in college we wouldn’t
feel like middle school girls
with unrequited crushes.

The next day he dropped off a fish
(and this is no euphemism
or pretty poetry slang,
I opted to fish-sit while
he went home for break).
After he left, and
feeling more than silly
I took out the last Gumby
and pretended.
I pretended that it was every wish
on a boy I had made
since I realized boys weren’t
completely disgusting.
On my way to class
I held the little gummy in my
frozen, clenched fist
and wished
that’d he’d kiss me before he left.
I made it really specific
because every movie I’d ever seen
with genies in it had taught me that
specifics were key to avoiding
mishap and mayhem.

Obviously, it didn’t come true.
And I feel like I’m back in middle school,
wishing on ugly carrots and stars
that look suspiciously like airplanes.
Everyone has crushes,
and still more wishes.
Why I thought
at the age of nineteen
when the glamour of Disney-endings
and romantic-comedy plots
had tarnished to realism,
that a Gumby gummy prayer
would come true,
well I’m not entirely sure.

Maybe it’s no matter how old you are
there are always ugly carrots
and shooting stars
and fast airplanes
and romantic comedies
and gummies in the shape of
kids’ show characters.
Maybe no matter how disappointed I am
there will always be unrequited crushes
and genies for wishes
and God for prayers
and heaven forbid
Creep Dec 2014
-friends that care
-kawaii shtuff
-hella sweet and cute ppl ;)
-talking to my crush
-learning something useful that i like
-reading (especially cheesy romantic comedies)
-most sports
-talking nerdy
-nerd/geek debates
-youtube videos
-playing guitar
-playing video games

by pharell williams

rhiannon Dec 2017
who are you?

upon whose skin comedies are written
in bruises and scars like graffiti on your heart
scrawled upon the walls in the language of
maddening imperfection.

who exhumes the bones of demons
from the graveyard growing
inside of you
the cemetery where you bury your grief.

who are you?
who rebels at the crimes,
self-inflicted, yet
cannot bring yourself to bury the hatchet
(a hurricane that refuses to be named.)

who has learned (to your sorrow)
that the world has teeth
and homes cannot be made
out of human beings.

who cannot help but idle
on the question
"what parts of me still function
i wrote this when i was about 16 but wanted to share
Vamika Sinha Jun 2015
Dear Vamika,
of a long and a
time away. Of the
future, when
your ******* are fuller
and you can finally speak
French fluently.

I hope you are a woman.

I know you
have not changed the world.
I didn’t write you that way.
I’m still
not writing you that way.
For my cheap gel pen
has none of that spark
of Fitzgerald’s and Nabokov’s,
who could bewitch the imagination with
such timeless giants
as ****** and Daisy.

So remember:
you’ll be brilliant
but absent
from any history books.
But still.
You are enough, exquisitely enough,
for the literature
I inhabit.

Hence, I fill pages with your inky
outlines, shade in the spaces
with hopes and wishes and poetry and dreams.
For you, of you.
I note
all that you are
composed of, so that
even the marginalia
laughs out your lipstick,
your clothes drawers,
your reading habits.

I am writing you as a woman.

I am writing you
as Music. Here is your laughter,
a little smokier now,
unspooling like a work of
Debussy’s. Here are your
fingers, lighter now, like meringues
or dandelions, as they dance
on your silver flute,
better, better, better than ever,
in shiny theatres far
grander than you imagined.
And here are your tiny
scrawled music notes, that with a few touched
keys, echo as tumbling stars
in the ears of thousands
and then plenty.

I hope you are a woman.
So play, compose, laugh and sing; be
Music ‘til your dying day.

I am writing you
as Ambition. It is calmer
than the fire that currently
singes my hands. Yet it’s still as
as the flame you
light, every night before bed,
in front of the Goddess Durga
you pray to.
Your heart still
salivates for hard-boiled
surprises, for lucky pennies
found on pavements, for the
metallic sweetness of, yes,

I hope you are a woman.
So strive, and strive again,
‘til you’re nothing but ash.

I am writing you, too,
as Success.
Those words unhooked
from the crevices of your mind,
are now bound in
You are a poet, sleeker than
the 17-year-old fledgling
in her dim bedroom.
You are a journalist,
pouring morning stories
like hot tea, and sighing
with honey glee at
your name in
You are a writer;
you fill even more pages, and
you now have a
gleaming, expensive

I hope you are a woman.
So write, ‘til you have lost
all breath.

I am writing you
as Compassion. How could I not
let you share words (your  personal magic) with
countless sparking children?
And not fill your hands with
gifts of maths, English,
science and art that you can
give and give and
give to them?
An education is as precious and
priceless as Picasso, you say.
A human right, all the same.
A human right.

I hope you are a woman.
So be kind. That’s it.
I have not forgotten  
to write you as
Go out and support,
wave flags and placards,
sign petitions, join many
campaigns, scream out ‘til
your throat can’t bear such
honesty, such
Keep fighting.
Never stop. The world is unfixable,
imperfect and
Help it.

I hope you fight for other women.
I hope you fight for other humans.

I am also writing you
as Resilience. So you’re able
to face yourself in that
mirror, even though
your stomach has a stubborn bulge, still,
and you haven’t yet learned
to smile at your nose.
And I’m reminding you that you do,
yes, you do,
have the strength to cry alone, then
get over it,
to have panic attacks, then
get over it,
to pick yourself up from
life’s many disintegrations and
start again.
You can. You’ve already done it.
I hope you always will.

I know that you are a woman.
So never give up, as
cliché as it sounds. Go ahead and
die trying.

Now, as the cadenza
of this rather sentimental piece,
which I’ve spun as
as stolen sugar
and the romantic comedies at which
you secretly weep,
I am writing you as
See, I decided that Love and
Romance are but
bombs. And you and I both
believe in non-violence.
Therefore, you are
a hugger now, with lips
which kiss your husband,
scold your children
and sing
lullabies to the whole silly lot of them.
Your heart is always
with a good bit of warm wine,  so don’t
question its fullness.
Take care of yourself.

This, above, is all I hope for you
to stay and have and be
until the symphony’s final note, your
final breath.

You are a woman.
Flawed, intelligent, beautiful, cracked, strong, kind, stubborn, soft, honest.

You are a woman.
So stay like this,
but be just a little more wiser, a little more grown
each passing year.

A woman.
Vamika, that’s all I ever want you to be.
What do you hope to achieve in your lifetime? (Entry for Commonwealth Essay Competition)
Alex B Mar 2015
On silver screen cinemas
Actors portray pain
Dripping tears
Like that of thunderstorm rain

Comedies - that's all they are
Comedies is all I see
Sick and twisted parodies
of me and those like me
Horror flicks
and gruesome pics
are simple things when compared

Yes Agony
Agony is your true name

What actor dare play my part
what actor dare say
"I Dare"
Because of you Agony
My bittersweet agony
is but a lost memory
Because of you.... Agony my sweet agony
Is a mystery- never clear
And my heart, my agony
Is a flame
flickering, riddled glimmer
Beating..... nevermore

Thanks to you- my sweet Agony

I know Hate
You ******, exotic,
Beautiful creature.

I could not be more intrigued by you.

I drove,
46 miles,
just to meet you,
you screamed at me for being late.
I wasn't.
I just live farther from your perspective than you can imagine.

I saw your face,
then I saw your eagerness,
Then I played this game,
Where I googled every word you said,
became an expert on it.
Throwing back refferences to things
i've never seen.

When I rolled in with my cigarette lit,
Sporting my badboy leather jacket,
you asumed I was this rebel.
This dangerous,
amazing creature.
Dropped onto this earth to entertain you.

That's exactlly what I am.

I'm 46 miles away from my home town.

My foam swords,
magic the gathering cards,
Dungeon and dragons playing self
Packaged tightly in the lockbox at my bedroom door.

The daddy, I became years ago
because I wanted too.

The lover I was raised to be,
watching nothing but romantic comedies my entire childhood
like some sort of propaganda to be the perfect boyfriend.
Tucked crisply into my bed.

My smolder is a gas mask.
you are the poison gas.
It was invented specifically for me to survive when I'm in the trenches with you.
My attitude is an army.
I hold myself like a commander shouting orders at my mind like it needs a leader.

“Stop calling her beautiful, maggot! She wants you to take charge.”

“Sir, yes sir!”

...So uh...
What do you wanna do today?

“What do you think you're doing?
Don't give her options!
Tell her where you're going!”

“Sir, yes, sir”

We're getting coffee.

We go to her favorite coffee house, I guessed.

She gets a nutella mocha.

I get a 16oz almond milk maple syrup latte

She calls me a hipster,
I laugh, I don't disagree.

I give her the radio,
“You pick the music”

“What do you think you're doing maggot!?”

“trust me,
we need to find out what music she likes before I play my music.
It's very important.”

I can pull brilliance out of any genre,
bands she's never heard of, but she'll fall in love with.
She plays show tunes.


... Jackpot!

I start the conversation, you ever heard of Rocky Horror?

You ever hear of
Doctor Horribles Sing Along Blog?

You ever hear of
Little Shop of Horrors?

You ever hear of
Repo, The Genetic Opera?

You ever hear of
Hedwig and The Angry Inch?

She has.
All of it.
Every last word.
And she knows all of the words.
In fact,
every song I sing,
she sings along.
Word for word.

I  crack the whip,

you ever heard of Bo Burnham?

She has.

This girl might be the one.

“What do you think you're doing maggot?
Don't fall in love with this girl already,
Don't fall in love with this girl at all.”

“Sir, yes, sir”

We walk the beach,
Every word of every song either of us start the other knows all the words.
She's breathtaking.
I can't believe it happened myself.
We chase each other in the sand.

I confess.

“You're actually the first person i've seen in real life from tinder...
I hear all these stories of couples meeting people for threesomes online and then murdering them.
I was half expecting you to **** me.”

She says:

“Well we didn't get to the end of the beach yet.”

I laugh.... wait... is she serious?

She laughs. “No really, i'm a sociopath.
My boyfriends waiting at the rocks down there and when we
Start to **** he's gonna jump out and slit your throat.
The redness of your blood spilling on the rocks is going to make me so,

This sounds like a great Idea.

She texts her boyfriend and asks if it's okay to kiss me.
When he doesn't reply she spams him.



C'mon Babe.

Really, Babe.




It starts to rain,
We stay and get soaked together,
We don't care that we're wet, we keep singing.
The rain stops.
We get in my car.
I drive her to portland,
We park in the parking garage,
because i don't understand...

I buy her dinner,

Not because it's the polite, gentlemanly thing to do,
I'd do that without the leather jacket, no.
because her sugar was low
she was having a panic attack
her boyfriend and her were probably breaking up and I felt bad.
Her boyfriend finally texts her back.

“Yeah, do what you want.”

I kiss her.

She asked me too before he gave permission, and my colonel said to do it

But I've been on the otherside of that text messege.

And even knowing what she wanted, I was waiting for that reply.
I don't know that boy.

But he deserved that

We go back to the parking garage, and she does not waste time,
My belt undone,
Her mouth eager,
Did I mention that this was the mission?
After awhile She asks to go to the back.
We do.
She removes the leather jacket.
this is her chance to wear
The leather jacket.
I make her ***,
I have this brief thought that maybe she faked it for me, but then
I can taste the truth,
I'm proud.

“Good job, maggot.”

“Sir, thank you, sir”

I drive the 46 miles back to kennebunk to drop her off.
She keeps my shirt.
I get home and find her phone charger in my backseat.
“Looks like we have a second date,"

I text her. “you forgot something, beautiful.
And I think you might want it.”
A true Story.
Marisol Quiroz Jun 2018
my past is part of who i am,
i cannot erase it.
it’s written in the books collected on the
bookshelves between my ribs,
stacked upon my spine.

the stories of who i am are carved into me,
scripted on my skin,
branded on my bone,
there is no part of me that is not built upon
this blood of black ink.

i am a collection of my own tragedies,
of my own comedies,
of my own romances.
a library of my own experiences.

not all the collection is good,
some books are quite damaged,
but not all the collection is bad,
my pages are still full of love.

you can pick out which books to read,
which stories you like
and which you’d rather leave,
but it’s still
my past is still a part of me.

― personal library
Lee Turpin Nov 2010
in sunlight
white beam
rooms they say,
all love stories begin with
they don't know what that means,
every goodbye begins with
Megan May Apr 2014
I am not my body

I am not the freckles scattered across my face like mismatched constellations
I am not the extra cupcakes that find their way to my thighs
I am not the shade of my eyes nor the hue of my skin
I am not the dark circles that come from lack of sleep
I am not the imperfections that appear on my forehead

I am my soul

I am a sad song on a lonely Saturday night
I am cute movies at midday and romantic comedies at midnight
I am the moon and the sun and the stars and the trees dancing in the wind
I am love and heartbreak, art and music
I am the clothes I wear and the people I associate with
I am the eye of a hurricane

My body is just a fragile house for the memories and dreams that live inside me.
And I refuse to be defined by that in which I reside.
A Yellow Domino May 2013
There's the eight of us,
So very different
But yet so much the same.

Each of us holds our special traits.
Our special talents
Converged as an octet.

Some artistic
Some scientific
Some linguistic and
All fantastic.

We love to laugh,
We love to tease,
We love to make a fool of ourselves.

We know there's one who's always there,
Spraying water everywhere,
But never lets people touch her hair.

And then there's one,
Who's buff and tough,
Her voice can change like a chameleon's skin.

Next we have this pretty babe,
Her furry stuff are fun to touch,
She's the gentlest, loveliest llama I know.

Not to forget,
The one's that's brainy,
Such a smarty that she can't type properly.

There's also one that I believe
She's really a mermaid in disguise,
Her actions way too ridiculous.

Of course we have this crazy kid,
Too many fandoms and too little sleep.
I still wonder why she needs her hood all the time.

And here there's another girl,
With real beautiful eyes,
A perfect actress for sketch comedies.

Last but not least,
There's just me,
I can't find a word for my personality.

I don't know how far we'll go,
If we'll still stay as close as we are right now.
As time cruelly marches on,
The day we'll part ways draws so near.

This part of me knows
That this magical bond
That we call friendship,
Will live on forever and ever.

Never did I feel so sure,
So confident about friendship.
But you guys are so special,
I really hope you know.

No matter what happens,
I see myself with you all forever,
And you all with me.

I believe in this friendship.
This magical bond,
That holds the eight of us,
Closely together,
Colleen Brown Dec 2012
Regardless of our state of mind.
Regardless of religion.
Regardless of race.
We all love and have lost.

Sometimes, we love while losing.
For others, we must love while
being apart, while fearing the unknown,
yet knowing we can't go there.  

It doesn't matter the story,
the pain is the same.
The wait is agonizing.
The mere fact that we know
we'll see them again
keeps us warm in the coldest of nights.

Being the one who was left,
we replay those last minutes,
or even seconds. We avoid
romantic comedies, walks
through the parks, or candlelit dinners.

As the weeks turn to months,
we simply re-learn how to stand.
We take one step. And another.
We learn to live alone.

Romantic comedies are turned on.
Walks in the parks aren't so cold.
Candlelit dinners still seem corny.
And my memories serve as a blanket.
Kendall Dinsmore Oct 2013
You’re huge nose may have stabbed me in the eye but I still like the story of my first kiss more than any other I have heard.
I can still feel the hug you gave me after you graduated. My feet left the ground and your eyes whispered everything I ever wanted you to say into my soul. Your arms felt like home.
Nail it into my chest, I swear to god, two years, two months, and twenty-eight days later, I would still come crawling  and take you back as if you were the last bit of oxygen in a gas chamber
Loving you was the last thing I felt really good at.
There is nothing rational about love.
If there was, romantic comedies wouldn’t be so popular. It’s ironic we both want to be film majors because our story could give The Princess Bride a run for its money
If I could, I would erase you from my memory and throw away everything you had ever touched but you’ll always be the eternal sunshine in my spotless mind, Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet would do us no justice.
I’m not a love poet, but look at the situation you put me in now. I used to write and not sound like a whiney middle school girl, what did you do to me?
I stayed up until 2 in the morning listening to you cry about another girl, you can’t tell me that I didn’t care enough for you to stay
I painted your name in stars, I swear we could have brushed lips with forever. The universe could have been our playground. I’m making you sound a lot better than you really are but in my mind the greatest love story of all time could have come from Lake Region High School. You ruined what could have been but I would change anything to clean up your mess.
The other girl looked like a pug.
Yes, a pug. She is literally identical with my dog.
I don’t know why I ever loved you.
You really need a haircut.
I’m a vegetarian, I went to the deli where you work just to have an excuse to see you.
It’s hard for me to count when I get emotional
I would literally do anything for you. Just know a girl in your hometown thinks about you like you put the stars in the sky.
I don’t know how to end a poem about something I can’t accept as over so...
LeeAnn Nov 2013
William Shakespeare: playwright and poet
My absolute favorite of all time
The master of words in plays and sonnets
Unappreciated during his prime
His comedies still make us laugh today
Who could forget The  Taming  of  the  Shrew?
Now it's told in a much different way
A movie: The  Ten  Things  I  Hate  About  You
People think of his many tragedies
Othello,  Romeo  and  Juliet
We still feel their sorrow; weak at the knees
We cry for the Prince of Denmark:  Hamlet.
"But soft! What light through yonder window break?"
The work of a legend those words do make!
Had to write a poem for class, and I kind of liked it :) After my idol, William Shakespeare!
Robert Ronnow Aug 2015
Prose is unpretentious, that's its attraction. Avoids bombast of line breaks but forgoes -- what -- perfect rest. Anyway today, a November day in February, no chance getting rest with the poor clay I'm made from.

With my mother this weekend, her dementia proceeding according to what plan. Saturday the kind of day I never have. Actually read three stories by Updike. One extraordinary -- Tomorrow and Tomorrow and So Forth -- which I chose from his Complete through 1975 for the reference to Macbeth and in it he so humanely, sympathetically explains through the high school English teacher's thoughts Shakespeare's mid-life bitterness or disappointment realizing few men achieve their potential in the face of history, society and their personal flaws. Making for tragedy. Hard to be humorous about that although Updike finds in Shakespeare's late plays, especially The Tempest, a resolution amounting to wisdom that there can be contentment with imperfection and partial achievement. Updike took some of the starch out of my contention that all Shakespeare's plays are comedies, impossible to take Hamlet, Lear, Macbeth and Othello seriously. Certainly not Romeo and Juliet. It is a consolation that Updike's and even Shakespeare's achievements are imperfect although it would be wringing blood from a rock for me to achieve as much. The other two stories by Updike assured me that prose story-telling is as hit or miss as poetry. Bulgarian Poetess and How to Love America and Leave It At the Same Time made me think how fortunate I had been to find Tomorrow on the first try.

Not so much luck. I was attracted like a bee to a blossom to Shakespeare's lines in my personal anthology. No anthology and the poetry dependency it has created and I might have passed over the story. But now there is this conversation between me and all other writers. The anthology helps me know what I like but now I am tempted to try to articulate why I like what I like. Like the calendar, time and all else man lays his mind to it is a matter of bringing order from chaos by naming things according to our observations.

First, I like to understand what's going on in the poem. Not paraphrase it but describe the action. In Yeats' Lapis Lazuli, in the first paragraph, strophe or stanza, he talks about a community, a city or country, in which people, the women especially, high-toned maybe?, are upset about a political or wartime situation and are too hysterical for art or grace. Then he talks about actors playing Hamlet and Lear holding it together even though their characters die at the end of the play. No shouting, no crying. Then a paragraph or stanza about how whole civilizations are transitory too. Finally, in a reference to one of our oldest civilizations, two old Chinamen and their retainer are in the mountains. From their perspective, calm acceptance and longevity, perhaps some sadness, they look on all of history and non-history with something like gladness.

From there we can appreciate the artistry -- in Yeats' case the interesting rhymes and variable line lengths -- recognizing, however, that the artistry is not so much a demonstration of skill or a performance as the particular vehicle or discipline by which this artist discovered the content of his mind. It little matters whether verse is free, rhymed, blank, or formed as long as it is understandable and meaningful. Understandable to anyone, meaningful to someone.

The oldest formulation I have is Pound's -- the great themes of literature can be written on the back of a postage stamp. Until recently, I thought you could do it but you'd have to write very small. Now I know you can do it in your normal handwriting. I think they are Love (how we come into the world), Death (how we leave the world) and Governance (how we live in the world together). It may be possible to group Love and Death together, coming into and going out of life being similarly unknowable mysteries. The ways of talking about this one same mystery are apparently endless and endlessly fascinating. We cannot leave it alone. Almost all the greatest poems are about this mystery. Life is but a dream.

Then there is Governance -- how we live in the world together -- about which there are far fewer great poems. And usually they are about how our failure to live together leads back into the unknowable mystery through premature and sometimes mass death. Siamanto's The Dance comes to mind. I think the best poems of this type are written by so-called oppressed people.

Many poems treat both themes. But on the question of content, Pound is where I begin. My anthology -- Whole Wide World -- has a section which I'll call Double & Triple Features: Poems to Read Together, which pairs and groups poems according to my feeling that they share something -- theme, voice, structure -- in common. Subject matter is, I think, the commonest sharing. If I tried to name each pairing or grouping I might then have a hundred or more themes. Naming them adequately would be difficult to impossible. But why? And why not try? It would be a necessary start to talking about the poems: I read these poems together because....

Prose doesn't have to be beautiful, sometimes it's best when it's flat as Hemingway conclusively proved and one of its attractions is you can run on and on as long as the mind goes on following a thought without a stop sign for a whole page of books like Proust or Faulkner or Joyce.

Auden's is the second useful formulation that comes to mind (besides his chummy reverence for Shakespeare in naming him Top Bard). He classifies poems five ways:

            1. A good poem that's meaningful to him;
            2. A good poem that's not meaningful to him;
            3. A good poem that may someday become meaningful to him;
            4. A bad poem that's meaningful to him;
            5. A bad poem that's not meaningful to him.

I find I do about the same. But I discard all poems, good and bad, that are not meaningful to me. I have little taste for artistry for art's sake. The poem must speak to me or awaken me. Dickinson's formulation -- takes the top of your head off -- is the same as We can't define ******* but we know it when we see it.

A short aside: it feels inappropriate to answer the question What do you do? by saying I'm a poet. It would be like saying I'm a leader or I'm a prophet. You cannot anoint yourself a poet, a leader or a prophet -- others must do it for you. I wonder if I would be more comfortable if I had a larger audience (following) like Billy Collins for example. I think not. It would be like being a rock star, not a composer.

It's much more acceptable to say I'm a writer. Then when you answer the question Oh, what do you write? with Poetry, you are not self-aggrandizing, merely irrelevant, effete. Being a poet is viewed as being a flasher or nudist, exposing parts of yourself others would rather not see, at least not up close and personal, providing more information than others need or want to have. Maybe that's a good definition of a bad poet. Self-revelation dressed in verbal prowess is acceptable but naked, abject confession is unpardonable, tedious.

Although content is requisite for a poem to be meaningful, a poem is not really a communication like fiction or essay. It is more like an object, like a painting or sculpture, and perhaps like a musical score, sheet music. Yet I would still instruct students of poetry to first read each poem by the sentence, not the line, to derive its meaning, understand its argument, visualize its action. Then one might ask how and why is it sculpted, structured, with line breaks and strophes. Ultimately, the form of the poem is nothing more or less than the method by which the poet discovered his meaning. Although it is arbitrary -- it could have been said another way -- it is the only way it could be said by this person in this time and place. I have always liked the idea of a sculptor carving away stone or wood to reveal the form inside the block.

The poem lives on as an object, recognized by many or few or none. Like art or furniture, most are briefly useful then are moved to the attic or shed where they gather dust and mouse turds then break, dry and decay and find their way to the dump, the dust heap of history, only not even human history, just your personal history.

The anthology has made me an antiquarian -- one who cares as much for objects made by others as if I had made them myself.

So how can one talk about poems? The argument that any attempt to discuss or describe a poem is better served by simply reading the poem, perhaps memorizing it, has merit. Except in one respect -- the process can take you to undiscovered and half-discovered country within yourself. Always, first, you must understand the action otherwise we are just re-reading ourselves in our own tried and untrue ways. We must not mistake an old dog dying for a puppy being born. Misunderstanding the words is like constructing a science experiment with a flawed methodology and then using the results to shape or live in the world. It can be dangerous. Therefore reading poetry is a mental discipline worthy as the scientific method itself. It takes you out of yourself.

The fun of criticism comes in examining why and how the poem made you feel or think as you did. You can read closely for the chosen words, rhythms, lines and stanzas. You may admire the skill or wit of the poet. And you can refer to your own experience to understand your reaction. You can even disagree with the poet's thought or perception, or reject the sentiment. You can say that's him, not me.

Then there are Bloom's formulations of which I am wary, he being a critic not a poet. Yet here they are. Three sources of healthy complexity or difficulty in poems: 1) Sustained allusiveness -- cultural references that require the reader to be educated beyond the poem's content, for which he cites Milton as an example and could have Dante; 2) Cognitive originality -- leaps of perception and depths of understanding that startle, enlighten and take off the top of your head, for which he cites Shakespeare and Dickinson as examples and to which I would add much of what is memorable in modern poetry; and 3) Personal mythmaking -- whereby the poet constructs over time a system of images and personal (more than cultural) references that with familiarity become understandable and meaningful, citing Yeats and Blake as examples. How to make this formulation useful.

A second formulation by Bloom discusses poetic figures or the indirect means by which poetry uncovers truth, dancing with and romancing language rather than wrestling and pinning it down like philosophy tries. There are four: 1) Irony or saying one thing and meaning another, usually the opposite; 2) Symbol (synecdoche) or making one thing stand for another; 3) Contiguity (metonymy) or using an aspect or quality of something to represent the whole; and 4) Metaphor or transferring the qualities or associations of one thing to another.

Meanwhile, here's my **** poetica:

1) Poetry is an acquired taste, like golf or wine, with no obligation to appreciate it.

2) Poetry is divination; prose explains what we think we know but poetry discovers what we didn't know we thought.

3) Poetry is one of many man-made systems, like baseball or the scientific method, for producing knowledge, meaning and pleasure. Or are they all natural as ***?

4) Of all the other arts, poetry is most like sculpture; the word "poem" comes from the Indo- European root meaning "to make, to build."

5) It is impossible to write exactly what you mean or be accurately understood; poetry uses this to its advantage.

6) Line length -- enjambment -- is the single most important feature of poetry.

7) Poems are made from ideas; poetry is philosophy but where philosophy wrestles language down, poetry romances language.

8) Meaning is the most important product of poetry but it's completely personal; poems almost always say one thing and mean another but the poet often doesn't know what he meant.

9) It is almost impossible not to rhyme or write rhythmically in English or any other language.

10) The forms poets use are how the poet gets to his truth and are basically arbitrary choices.

11) Poems may be difficult and complex and irrational but they must be comprehensible.

12) Just describing the action of the poem will take you where you need to go.
Tempora labuntur, tacitisque senescimus annis,
Et fugiunt freno non remorante dies.
             Ovid, Fastorum, Lib. vi.

“O Cæsar, we who are about to die
Salute you!” was the gladiators’ cry
In the arena, standing face to face
With death and with the Roman populace.

O ye familiar scenes,—ye groves of pine,
That once were mine and are no longer mine,—
Thou river, widening through the meadows green
To the vast sea, so near and yet unseen,—
Ye halls, in whose seclusion and repose

Phantoms of fame, like exhalations, rose
And vanished,—we who are about to die,
Salute you; earth and air and sea and sky,
And the Imperial Sun that scatters down
His sovereign splendors upon grove and town.

Ye do not answer us! ye do not hear!
We are forgotten; and in your austere
And calm indifference, ye little care
Whether we come or go, or whence or where.
What passing generations fill these halls,
What passing voices echo from these walls,
Ye heed not; we are only as the blast,
A moment heard, and then forever past.

Not so the teachers who in earlier days
Led our bewildered feet through learning’s maze;
They answer us—alas! what have I said?
What greetings come there from the voiceless dead?
What salutation, welcome, or reply?
What pressure from the hands that lifeless lie?
They are no longer here; they all are gone
Into the land of shadows,—all save one.
Honor and reverence, and the good repute
That follows faithful service as its fruit,
Be unto him, whom living we salute.

The great Italian poet, when he made
His dreadful journey to the realms of shade,
Met there the old instructor of his youth,
And cried in tones of pity and of ruth:
“Oh, never from the memory of my heart

Your dear, paternal image shall depart,
Who while on earth, ere yet by death surprised,
Taught me how mortals are immortalized;
How grateful am I for that patient care
All my life long my language shall declare.”

To-day we make the poet’s words our own,
And utter them in plaintive undertone;
Nor to the living only be they said,
But to the other living called the dead,
Whose dear, paternal images appear
Not wrapped in gloom, but robed in sunshine here;
Whose simple lives, complete and without flaw,
Were part and parcel of great Nature’s law;
Who said not to their Lord, as if afraid,
“Here is thy talent in a napkin laid,”
But labored in their sphere, as men who live
In the delight that work alone can give.
Peace be to them; eternal peace and rest,
And the fulfilment of the great behest:
“Ye have been faithful over a few things,
Over ten cities shall ye reign as kings.”

And ye who fill the places we once filled,
And follow in the furrows that we tilled,
Young men, whose generous hearts are beating high,
We who are old, and are about to die,
Salute you; hail you; take your hands in ours,
And crown you with our welcome as with flowers!

How beautiful is youth! how bright it gleams
With its illusions, aspirations, dreams!
Book of Beginnings, Story without End,
Each maid a heroine, and each man a friend!
Aladdin’s Lamp, and Fortunatus’ Purse,
That holds the treasures of the universe!
All possibilities are in its hands,
No danger daunts it, and no foe withstands;
In its sublime audacity of faith,
“Be thou removed!” it to the mountain saith,
And with ambitious feet, secure and proud,
Ascends the ladder leaning on the cloud!

As ancient Priam at the Scæan gate
Sat on the walls of Troy in regal state
With the old men, too old and weak to fight,
Chirping like grasshoppers in their delight
To see the embattled hosts, with spear and shield,
Of Trojans and Achaians in the field;
So from the snowy summits of our years
We see you in the plain, as each appears,
And question of you; asking, “Who is he
That towers above the others? Which may be
Atreides, Menelaus, Odysseus,
Ajax the great, or bold Idomeneus?”

Let him not boast who puts his armor on
As he who puts it off, the battle done.
Study yourselves; and most of all note well
Wherein kind Nature meant you to excel.
Not every blossom ripens into fruit;
Minerva, the inventress of the flute,
Flung it aside, when she her face surveyed
Distorted in a fountain as she played;
The unlucky Marsyas found it, and his fate
Was one to make the bravest hesitate.

Write on your doors the saying wise and old,
“Be bold! be bold!” and everywhere, “Be bold;
Be not too bold!” Yet better the excess
Than the defect; better the more than less;
Better like Hector in the field to die,
Than like a perfumed Paris turn and fly.

And now, my classmates; ye remaining few
That number not the half of those we knew,
Ye, against whose familiar names not yet
The fatal asterisk of death is set,
Ye I salute! The horologe of Time
Strikes the half-century with a solemn chime,
And summons us together once again,
The joy of meeting not unmixed with pain.

Where are the others? Voices from the deep
Caverns of darkness answer me: “They sleep!”
I name no names; instinctively I feel
Each at some well-remembered grave will kneel,
And from the inscription wipe the weeds and moss,
For every heart best knoweth its own loss.
I see their scattered gravestones gleaming white
Through the pale dusk of the impending night;
O’er all alike the impartial sunset throws
Its golden lilies mingled with the rose;
We give to each a tender thought, and pass
Out of the graveyards with their tangled grass,
Unto these scenes frequented by our feet
When we were young, and life was fresh and sweet.

What shall I say to you? What can I say
Better than silence is? When I survey
This throng of faces turned to meet my own,
Friendly and fair, and yet to me unknown,
Transformed the very landscape seems to be;
It is the same, yet not the same to me.
So many memories crowd upon my brain,
So many ghosts are in the wooded plain,
I fain would steal away, with noiseless tread,
As from a house where some one lieth dead.
I cannot go;—I pause;—I hesitate;
My feet reluctant linger at the gate;
As one who struggles in a troubled dream
To speak and cannot, to myself I seem.

Vanish the dream! Vanish the idle fears!
Vanish the rolling mists of fifty years!
Whatever time or space may intervene,
I will not be a stranger in this scene.
Here every doubt, all indecision, ends;
Hail, my companions, comrades, classmates, friends!

Ah me! the fifty years since last we met
Seem to me fifty folios bound and set
By Time, the great transcriber, on his shelves,
Wherein are written the histories of ourselves.
What tragedies, what comedies, are there;
What joy and grief, what rapture and despair!
What chronicles of triumph and defeat,
Of struggle, and temptation, and retreat!
What records of regrets, and doubts, and fears!
What pages blotted, blistered by our tears!
What lovely landscapes on the margin shine,
What sweet, angelic faces, what divine
And holy images of love and trust,
Undimmed by age, unsoiled by damp or dust!
Whose hand shall dare to open and explore
These volumes, closed and clasped forevermore?
Not mine. With reverential feet I pass;
I hear a voice that cries, “Alas! alas!
Whatever hath been written shall remain,
Nor be erased nor written o’er again;
The unwritten only still belongs to thee:
Take heed, and ponder well what that shall be.”

As children frightened by a thunder-cloud
Are reassured if some one reads aloud
A tale of wonder, with enchantment fraught,
Or wild adventure, that diverts their thought,
Let me endeavor with a tale to chase
The gathering shadows of the time and place,
And banish what we all too deeply feel
Wholly to say, or wholly to conceal.

In mediæval Rome, I know not where,
There stood an image with its arm in air,
And on its lifted finger, shining clear,
A golden ring with the device, “Strike here!”
Greatly the people wondered, though none guessed
The meaning that these words but half expressed,
Until a learned clerk, who at noonday
With downcast eyes was passing on his way,
Paused, and observed the spot, and marked it well,
Whereon the shadow of the finger fell;
And, coming back at midnight, delved, and found
A secret stairway leading underground.
Down this he passed into a spacious hall,
Lit by a flaming jewel on the wall;
And opposite, in threatening attitude,
With bow and shaft a brazen statue stood.
Upon its forehead, like a coronet,
Were these mysterious words of menace set:
“That which I am, I am; my fatal aim
None can escape, not even yon luminous flame!”

Midway the hall was a fair table placed,
With cloth of gold, and golden cups enchased
With rubies, and the plates and knives were gold,
And gold the bread and viands manifold.
Around it, silent, motionless, and sad,
Were seated gallant knights in armor clad,
And ladies beautiful with plume and zone,
But they were stone, their hearts within were stone;
And the vast hall was filled in every part
With silent crowds, stony in face and heart.

Long at the scene, bewildered and amazed
The trembling clerk in speechless wonder gazed;
Then from the table, by his greed made bold,
He seized a goblet and a knife of gold,
And suddenly from their seats the guests upsprang,
The vaulted ceiling with loud clamors rang,
The archer sped his arrow, at their call,
Shattering the lambent jewel on the wall,
And all was dark around and overhead;—
Stark on the floor the luckless clerk lay dead!

The writer of this legend then records
Its ghostly application in these words:
The image is the Adversary old,
Whose beckoning finger points to realms of gold;
Our lusts and passions are the downward stair
That leads the soul from a diviner air;
The archer, Death; the flaming jewel, Life;
Terrestrial goods, the goblet and the knife;
The knights and ladies, all whose flesh and bone
By avarice have been hardened into stone;
The clerk, the scholar whom the love of pelf
Tempts from his books and from his nobler self.

The scholar and the world! The endless strife,
The discord in the harmonies of life!
The love of learning, the sequestered nooks,
And all the sweet serenity of books;
The market-place, the eager love of gain,
Whose aim is vanity, and whose end is pain!

But why, you ask me, should this tale be told
To men grown old, or who are growing old?
It is too late! Ah, nothing is too late
Till the tired heart shall cease to palpitate.
Cato learned Greek at eighty; Sophocles
Wrote his grand Oedipus, and Simonides
Bore off the prize of verse from his compeers,
When each had numbered more than fourscore years,
And Theophrastus, at fourscore and ten,
Had but begun his “Characters of Men.”
Chaucer, at Woodstock with the nightingales,
At sixty wrote the Canterbury Tales;
Goethe at Weimar, toiling to the last,
Completed Faust when eighty years were past.
These are indeed exceptions; but they show
How far the gulf-stream of our youth may flow
Into the arctic regions of our lives,
Where little else than life itself survives.

As the barometer foretells the storm
While still the skies are clear, the weather warm
So something in us, as old age draws near,
Betrays the pressure of the atmosphere.
The nimble mercury, ere we are aware,
Descends the elastic ladder of the air;
The telltale blood in artery and vein
Sinks from its higher levels in the brain;
Whatever poet, orator, or sage
May say of it, old age is still old age.
It is the waning, not the crescent moon;
The dusk of evening, not the blaze of noon;
It is not strength, but weakness; not desire,
But its surcease; not the fierce heat of fire,
The burning and consuming element,
But that of ashes and of embers spent,
In which some living sparks we still discern,
Enough to warm, but not enough to burn.

What then? Shall we sit idly down and say
The night hath come; it is no longer day?
The night hath not yet come; we are not quite
Cut off from labor by the failing light;
Something remains for us to do or dare;
Even the oldest tree some fruit may bear;
Not Oedipus Coloneus, or Greek Ode,
Or tales of pilgrims that one morning rode
Out of the gateway of the Tabard Inn,
But other something, would we but begin;
For age is opportunity no less
Than youth itself, though in another dress,
And as the evening twilight fades away
The sky is filled with stars, invisible by day.
Hudson Everett Mar 2013
starry eyed lovers
looking for
blurry eyed lovers
no sleep
wide eyed lovers
so late

coffee and cigarettes
*** and romance and
reading each other poetry
from old books
laughing and talking until 4 am
and not giving a ****

growing old and grey together
knowing all the secrets and flaws
that make you, you
and me, me

holding each other close
while the storm rages
and the raindrops dance on the roof
and the windows light and shake with each thunderclap
and the cold creeps in
but it can’t get to us because
we have each other for warmth

secrets and jokes that nobody else
shares but us
and nothing can keep us apart
because it is you and me
against the world
fighting back to back
to keep things alright
staying sane for each other
Samuel Bass May 2013
Driving off onto the 101 rush hour concrete jungle, there are no exits,
only obligations to stay stuck in my mobile cubicle moving at the speed of slow.
Hidden flowers on the hillside bloom away mocking my insanity,
they cheer me on to see beyond these gray prison bevels.
Gray blocks hollow until they're filled with my humanity,
making me take the choices reaped with devils.

I feel like I've lived a day in one hour, it's so early it could be midnight.
Twisting and turning in my brain, the sun suddenly ridicules, feeding me a fresh case of insane.
I'm at a point of sorrow, sorrow of an exceptional quality, Grade A-farm raised, take two tomorrow.
The raven croaked nevermore, Juliet is the sun, dangren-burang1.
We have to go. I'm almost happy here2. Complacency rots insides, then refills with fear.
So - Listen to them - children of the night. What music they make3. Clamoring for sight.
There's no flesh or blood within this cloak to ****. There's only an idea. Ideas are bulletproof4. Filled with truths, synapse salvoes, loves, and drugs. We love what we eat and eat who we are. GERManic germs looking for psychological thrills. You work the guns, I'll rattle the hills.

Smoking cannabis to an over-extent, hope lost, old kung-fu and 80's movies won, I eat smoke for breakfast.
This sun is still mocking me, “Start your day, be productive, make a baby, then expiry.”
Stepping into society, I'm a satanic leaf-tailed gecko wanting freedom, abdicate, and let go your kingdom.
Halfheartedly half washed dishes in my sink; this entropy roller-coaster of highs and lows drives me to drink and think, then drink and smoke, making life one strange syrupy green swirl of mammarys and calamities filled with brevity’s of rarities.

5,000 images, 2 comedies, and a numb right arm later I've turned into dark matter, invisibly pulling all that matters together into a forever stretched infinitely, literally making synergies out of life-energies.
1) Yield to nobody when one is doing what is right. 2) Ender's Game, Ender Wiggin 3) Bram Stoker's Dracula 4) V For Vendetta

How thoughtful were the rainfalls
To water our gardens and flowers
The flowers spread wide garments
To celebrate their terminal beauty

The joyful frogs occupied my pond
To orchestrate their vocal prowess
They taught me to take blind leaps
Like lightning bouncing in the skies

Squatted, stretched, beeped down
I was a millstone on the pond floor
My slippery pond mates wondered
How soft I was in the maritime arts

Mortally rescued in a muddy mood
The clouds sent in rescuing showers
To confirm my firm loss to the frogs
Like a grain of salt cast into the seas


The money bags shopping for their body bags
Waggled through the makeshift supermarkets

Their ancestral homes they plotted modernity
Like the general gathering fine forces together

To the villages they made to return with pride
Like pregnant elephants caught up in the mud

Their desolate villages are deep and sickening
Glowing flamingly in the crucibles of local gins

The dusty and gravy pathways are like furnace
Burning the leather off from their frozen souls

Traditional birth attendants cut off their cords
And zipped the money bags in their body bags


The new day spoke powerfully
Like a war making superpower
And his voice roared forcefully
Like the skies forced to shower

The sunrays came dynamically
Like love responding to silence
Beauty crawled in submissively
Like the mixed arts and science

One eagle soared energetically
Like lions feuding in the colony
Far clouds relocated peacefully
Like souls betrayed to harmony

The breeze sighed thoughtfully
Like horses galloping on the lea
Inspiration unfolded thankfully
Crowns monuments with a pea


The sun had gone to pay our bill in the fog bank
The world foggily crawled into the strong rooms
Darkness demonstrated her strong mindfulness
Provided for the strong gale with lurking shrieks

The black paint billers snowballed to our dreams
With the bill of exchange for wild sunny excesses
Ghostly bats emerged with the bill of indictment
In demonstration of our acrophobic dispositions

We packaged the sunrays for our folk memories
To reassure the day of our eternal followerships
We cherish our follow-throughs in our dark beat
To usher the sunlight out of the hollow fog bank


These things had happened before we were born
Like sulphur deep into our fresh hearts they burn
Now we stumble on the bumpy terrains in horror
Like one frightened by ghosts in a standing mirror

The internecine feud has razed our men of valour
With their carcasses dumped in their cold parlour
Our community cattle graze in the barren pasture
Like the unrepentant sinners awaiting the rapture

For our plight the once glorious sky is grown pale
Like the ***** fetching territorial waters with pail
The storms have rolled off the catalogues for rain
All our efforts to mop up the mess end up in vain


They cracked coconuts on the heads for the crown
And embraced our days with their castaway pollen
Sadness and sorrow have dyed our garment brown
With the strongest song sung when night has fallen

These are the blinding dusts from our barn’s grains
They breed cunning serpents in the soft pasturages
They are failed cargoes on our broad societal trains
They dedicate our common committee to outrages

Now our days seek deliverance from their tentacles
Like the colourful fields immersed in gloomy beauty
They play our eyeballs with the stenciled spectacles
With our consciences to sight and found us off duty

To rescue us the colossal clouds were born gadarene
Our communal life was willed to pageants of gaieties
Then moonlight stories held us for a larger gathering
Now all the objects we sight dress up like cold deities


The rapacious thunderstorms ***** the skies for their tears
The hot embers were born to glow mourning the late forest
The moon crawled out of the blue like a great grandmother
Cuddling her descendants wrapped up in her ancient shawls

The wild waves were weird weavers weaving withering wails
The captioned wigs gyrated on stunning shoes upon auctions
The little creatures crouched in primeval baskets of the night
To gnaw at the generational tubers in the creative farmlands

The dazzling specimens of dentitions relaxed in water basins
Like bright red artistic architectures on potent ocean boards
Golden hearts glow in the threatening prisms of the furnace
As beautiful sunset defines her beauties in her nightly corset

It had been a sweet pill for the past descendants to swallow
Depending on the colonial masters for loaves, lore and lures
Our creativity had been packaged in their mortal depravities
Like the tranquil days resting sorrowfully upon the dark oars

The centenarian thunders downgraded our minute whispers
We had been kept upon our toes by the eternally sworn foes
At last our worthy artworks have worn their wormy catwalks
The refreshed dawns greet our easting days in their greenery


The victims in the dark rally
Caged, dried and browning
Therein their meanings tally
With waves born drowning

In the depth of a cold valley
Horrible nobles are cultures
Like pilgrims in the dark alley
Willed to ravenous vultures

The victims all robed in tears
With hearts like potter’s clay
For pains they have no fears
Only mimed games they play

For victory awaits the victims
Alien to a blind mimed game
Glorious are eternal rhythms
For death Christ died to tame


These are our giant threatening scars
Engraved on our demonstrative heads
Our sympathies crawled on superstars
Weeping for us on their moonlit beds

They threatened us with nasal sounds
Like thunderclouds seasoned to burst
For us their galleries are out of bounds
Behind the iron bars plagued with rust

Our patience passed their wildest tests
Like the lions roaring in the thick jungle
On the heart of the Lord our faith rests
Like numbers posted on the right angle

681.  A LADY

In a lady’s handbag
Is her hidden hunchback
Stuffed with her heart ache
For the pains relieving groom

In a lady’s tender smile
Is hidden miles of similitude
Marked with the zebra crossings
For the ever winning marathoner

In a tender lady’s heart
Is hidden her cowboy’s hat
Soaring within the white clouds
To soothe the earth with the latter rains


Bring back our homesick girls
Their vacant cradles are bleeding
Bring back our innocent girls
On the chariots of fire descending

Bring back our suckling girls
Their feeding bottles are weeping
Bring back our infant girls
Their mothers’ ******* are heavy

Bring back our harmless girls
The united universe is thundering
Bring back our dewy girls
In the sharp sun rising in the skies

Bring back our beautiful girls
Like light plucked from darkness
Bring back our glorious girls
Aboard the shore-bound waves

Bring back our worthy girls
On their fresh faces our lights seek to glow
Bring back our living girls
Our fountains of joy are bubbling to burst

For our returned girls the skies shall bear
Roaring rivers, singing seas, chiming clouds
With gongs and songs, pianos and praises
Dulcet dulcimers and documentable dances
With healthy hymns and eloquent embraces
All nations shall into a common cathedral flow

683. ****** GENEOLOGIES

They electrify their demonic high tables with old fears
Only their ****** genealogies are bookmarked to reign
The sight of their portables whetted our eyes to tears
We are reinforced by the clouds born to the later rain

Our skins have renovated the sickening cattle wagons
With our dreams flying upon huge smokes in the skies
Beneath their tables we abridge their creaking jargons
Upon their floors with our generational landmark tiles

The dew drops dropped like old crops upon our brows
To soften the veils falling to the flaming edged swords
The flaming hearted sword of the penetrating sunrays
Born to pluck us alive from our hotly bandaged bruises


The light is climbing downstairs
And danger is sprouting abroad
Our feet are listening for a word
Let us speak up lest they go deaf

The light is melted on the glades
And terror grazing our eyelashes
Our feet are listening for a word
Let us speak up lest they go deaf

The light is late and lately buried
The mourners are on danger list
Our feet are listening for a word
Let us speak up lest they go deaf

The light has divorced the grave
Her grave clothes are dew dyed
Our feet are listening for a word
Let us speak up lest they go deaf

Silence is a forgotten tombstone
Lost in the din of cold morticians
Our feet are listening for a word
Let us speak up lest they go deaf

685.  THE SUN

The sun smiles on all prescriptively
Like the waves spreading on shores
The green grass glows descriptively
Like the full moon upon dark sores

The sun is a tailor fixing the buttons
Preparing the sky for incoming stars
Like the weaverbird weaving cottons
To conceal the day’s damnable scars

The sun is a marker on diurnal pages
Tall grace he bestows on the flowers
The sun retains his graces for all ages
Bees and butterflies are his followers

Our common laughter is endangered
When sun bows down in big setbacks
All mortals have the starlets fingered
When the night comes on drawbacks


(For Lou Lenart and his team)

Their floods came seeking Jewish bloods
Like streams they roared for our dreams
They emerged as columns of soldier ants
Like whirlwinds they zoomed towards us

Until here we were crumbs for the reptiles
Until here we were like airborne cloudlets
But here the sudden change unveiled to us
From here the elusive victory embraced us

With skeletal jets we fought like bold lions
Soared like eagles and spoke like thunders
We conquered columns of invading armies
The bleeding armies turned back and blank

From here we turned from victims to victors
From here enemies’ defeat our greatest feat
Upon this memorable bridge it all happened
Victories leapt upon our pool like joyful frogs


The fledging sun offers its rays
And the rays offer golden trays
For our joy a platform to spray
Rowdy paratroops like thunder
To scoop roses from pure oasis

Our joy is ripe upon celebrations
Our celebrations with decorations
Decorations with documentations
Documentations for all generations
Generations in our joyful habitations


The dark clouds are wandering river basins
Spiral bounded by breakable outer casings
The rivers and the seas display empty cups
For the swift blessings descending the tops

The rains come as defense troops’ missiles
And the drowning lands look like imbeciles
Now we are groaning in the watered claws
With the liberated scales marking our flaws

The retreating clouds crawl away in a belch
Dumping the missing cargoes on the beach
The winds bow in a state of shock in a cord
Praying and fasting for a visit from the Lord


Grandmother, please wake and get up
The sky is quarreling with her husband
Soon they will spill their freezing sweat
On our bodies for us to catch dead cold

Grandmother, please sneeze not louder
The sky and her husband are quarreling
Soon they will send old floods like gales
To sweep mankind away from the world

Grandmother, you are everything I have
My moon, my sun and my morning stars
Provoke not the couples with your cough
Lest they refill their greasily wraths again

Grandmother, the big reptiles have come
With their lethal grandchildren following
They are laced with secret burial shrouds
With sympathetic tears tearing their eyes

Grandmother, I kiss you a shaky goodbye
With broken pains roaring within my soul
Grandmother, where are your groundnuts
To conduct my solo heart as you sing away


Lured away on an alluring dream by fables
I trudged along the grassy paths with fears
Upon my steps spilling the prevailing dews
The shadows bowed their heads in silence
Like the soul issued with a death sentence

The night crawlers emerged above boards
Throwing light upon contrary communities
In their hearts and eyes were painful tears
Crawling down their exaggerated eye *****
Like a handbag filled with rotten cosmetics

The shadows were bold animators’ shelves
Stage managing the horror motion pictures
In the ghostly commodities I met wild hosts
Lifeworks evaporated from my fresh breath
Like foreign tragedies in common comedies

The sorrowful shadows cast away their veils
Like the candles letting go of the weird wax
Sadly I sat in the sack for conflicting fetuses
Another sun appeared like a serial divorcee
Counting the testicles of another naked day


The sad sun descended upon her haunting melodies
Reeling from mysterious layers for electoral riggings
To harden the flowerbed for flower girls born tender
Disenfranchised voters came weeping in barren polls
Dressing the blank nest for the fat electoral parodies
With the mourners the faulty bells they came ringing
Like the angry water castigating a ****** port fender
And the smokes climbed upon their wide aerial poles
Arching over the emptied shelves with liberal singing
They subjected their subjective subjects to all objects
YOU gave, but will not give again
Until enough of paudeen's pence
By Biddy's halfpennies have lain
To be "some sort of evidence',
Before you'll put your guineas down,
That things it were a pride to give
Are what the blind and ignorant town
Imagines best to make it thrive.
What cared Duke Ercole, that bid
His mummers to the market-place,
What th' onion-sellers thought or did
So that his plautus set the pace
For the Italian comedies?
And Guidobaldo, when he made
That grammar school of courtesies
Where wit and beauty learned their trade
Upon Urbino's windy hill,
Had sent no runners to and fro
That he might learn the shepherds' will
And when they drove out Cosimo,
Indifferent how the rancour ran,
He gave the hours they had set free
To Michelozzo's latest plan
For the San Marco Library,
Whence turbulent Italy should draw
Delight in Art whoSe end is peace,
In logic and in natural law
By ******* at the dugs of Greece.
Your open hand but shows our loss,
For he knew better how to live.
Let paudeens play at pitch and toss,
Look up in the sun's eye and give
What the exultant heart calls good
That some new day may breed the best
Because you gave, not what they would,
But the right twigs for an eagle's nest!
Rachel Julia Oct 2015
I hate labels.
so you may ask me why do you compulsively put words and purposes and dates and times on everything you have.
I hate labels but I love organization.
The problem with labels is they rarely tell the whole story.
Labels are short, just a snapshot of the essence that the thing or person boils down to
but I don’t believe anything can really be that simple.
Labels can make everything easier.
You get the main point, the thing that stands out, FAST.
but that’s like starting a story at it’s ******, you get no previous information and that high point that holds so much meaning if you've read the entire story turns flat.
A flat character doesn’t grow or change or feel all that much but they usually have a label.
Labels turn real multidimensional, complicated, interesting people into flat characters.
He is not gay.
She is not a cutter.
and He is not transgender.
They are real people and you cannot possibly fit a person into a single worded description of the thing that stands out about them or makes them different.  
That is not enough for me!
The gay guy likes ice cream and romantic comedies, he's afraid of commitment, that scar is from his own blade and he volunteers on Wednesdays.
The cutter is seventeen and she lives with her grandparents. Almost everybody shes loved has walked away.
She has hair the color of sand at the beach and she wants to work in security at the airport so she can finally have control over who leaves and who stays.
The transgender man never felt trapped in the wrong body, the world just told him that his body was wrong. He’s a freshman in college and nobody ever told him how hard it would be. He calls his mom every night because he knows she worries and he cares. He has skin the color of caramel and he desperately wants to get married.
I hope you now understand that a label is never never enough.
You could argue that I’m afraid of being defined and of defining others with just a word,
but if you ask me a fear of labels is a very legitimate, considerate, and justifiable fear to have.
Labels are simply not enough.
And that's why I hate labels.
brandon nagley Jun 2015
She keeps on saying goodbye
I keep on saying hello

A comedy show!!!
Harry J Baxter Feb 2014
We were clean. Pure.
Trekking from pine needles to sand
time slipping away from
the mountainous routine of
laughter and tears smeared across cyberspace
when I was younger
my Mother told me
that when the people we love die
you can still see them
the brightest stars breaking through the night sky
we were wandering away from smirking academia
clawing our education from
the comedies and tragedies of early mornings
calm like the kiss of diamond tides
and long nights
weighed down with thoughts and drugs and alcohol
shutting off each night
on each sunrise
drifting with nomadic intentions we
raged for rage’s sake
on green lawns with signs painted
dig deeper into the blazing structure,
the momentum is shifting,
and the Kingfisher is watching
proclaiming from mountaintops
that killers hunt these city streets
with a pocket full of bad ideas
the prey a sparkling barfly
clean and holy beneath a neon color palette
potential squandered in a scream of confusion
knowing that not every leap
is a leap of faith
Jake Espinoza Feb 2011
Somebody, come along and give me perfection,
for so dearly do I need it;
Somebody, approach with eyes that speak naught but love,
for I cannot believe in you.

Yield to me a rose from your mind;
Bestow upon me a token of the solstice,
It is then that I shall know you;
Lead me not into temptation, but forgive

My sins as they sing from the hollow of my heart;
I can only give you my all,

Show me what perfection might mean;
And I’ll give that which I can.
Disregard me as a peasant of yours;
And I shall follow you until my days’ end.

Lead me so into temptation,
That I cannot help but succumb;
I cannot resist your body,
You cannot resist my fingers.

Give to me all that which is yours,
And I promise not to hurt you
Until the times passes;
And one of us outgrows the other.

Tell me that which you want from me,
And most certainly will I avoid it;
Tell me that which you detest of me,
And most certainly shall I console you.

Give me yourself, for I have no self of my own
I shall expose to you my soul
For you, naught but you, alone.

I hope for you to give me hope;
For I have lost my own.
I beg for you to show me God;
For I am all alone.

I hope for you to love my rhymes,
For I think they are ****;
I’d love you for all of time,
If only I could make sense of it.

So, –––––, this poem may be for you,
As lame as it may seem;
But I’m hoping against hope
That all you love, all you know,
Can be seen in the lines between.

So what if I’m frantic, so what if I’m a joke,
I can’t help but love you still
So on my own tongue, may I choke
When I say these words to you
Words I know you want not to hear;
I could **** myself without you,
If only this time of year.

I am stupid in my stupidity, so
For God’s sake, someone beat it out of me.
I find solace in my silence, in my solitude;
May I will it otherwise;
May I triumph, may I elude
The source of my discomfort, that I should rather not escape
Though I may think myself Superman
I shall never wear tights.
Until tomorrow.

There was this one night were I was thinking about this one girl who meant this one thing to me; this one thing was one of the most important things of which I could ever conceive – sure, love – and ******* if I don’t miss it as a child might miss his favorite toy.
Don’t get me wrong, no, don’t get me wrong, for God forbid if I forget how much I forbid myself of God and thus need strength here and there on earth to continue with my open negligence of the divine ***** to which so many wrong-doers seem to do right.
I miss love like an orphan misses his parents – I miss my parents like an orphan misses his abusive stepdad. I miss my abuse stepdad like a kid that didn’t have one – I suppose I’m lucky in that respect – but let’s get back to the subject here, the subject of love – something someone always tends to stray away from; and let’s talk about it, because it’s on all of our minds, every waking moment of our slight existence because we have naught else to think about but the suffering of others.
Love is a selfish act, brilliantly, altruistically selfish and I would have it no other way. I can tell you that ten hundred people will die today, and your immediate thoughts will be for those that you love.
So back to the point about this one girl from this one place who meant one thing to me. Her name isn’t important because it’s not important to me or to her; it’s just something other people hold in their minds to match her face to a word. I myself don’t match her face to a single word but a dictionary thereof – I see her as being everything in the world at once; a muse, a lover, a fighter, a foreigner, a slight, the perfection of hatred – I see everything, everything that exists in her eyes.
Give me pardon or give me death, for that is all that for which I can ask in this crazy world with this one girl from this one place from this one moment in time in which we were in love.
Love to me is hopelessness, because I just think it’s silly – I can’t help but look down upon people with hopelessness, because they think it’s a virus, an incurable virus, that leaves them open and vulnerable to all the evil forces in this vortex of a world. I embrace my hopelessness, my hopelessness in love – for God forbid that I might begin to search for those things that only exist in romantic comedies, those feel-good Disney moments. I don’t want that perfection, I only want my imperfect perfection, the only thing with which I feel I can live; bestow unto me, my lord, my savior, my nothing, that which I can only find for myself.
Pardon my death, or **** my pardon, for I am not but a man lost hopefully in love – something I cannot, will not, will never want to escape, for there is no greater pain than the pain that comes from loving some girl this one night from somewhere who means more to you than any girl anywhere.
The second part is to be read as a slam poem.

So it went
like this -
she said,
"My therapist
thinks we
should break up."
and I replied,
my psychiatrist
says that we
should break up, too."
so soon after,
we broke up.
It was like
Woody Allen
and Diane Keaton.
I didn't know
that such comedies
could actually
be real.
The way
that it appears
in my memory
is something
that isn't exactly real.
That's life!
(I think...).
David Leger Jul 2014
Dear, old friend,
I feel old without you;
While life beats slower each passing day,
With nothing ever new and nothing on the way.

I've grown weary with the predictable paterns of life,
Which you deliberated against,
And made bounding leaps to the rarely visited vegas of existence:
          Journeys we would often make together.

What memories do you forget of me,
And what memories did you create since?
And is it worth it to live and fulfill this epic narrative?
Your life does not have to be like a tragedy;
Always sorrowful and hanging in suspense.

I can pick you back up, old friend;
I'll pick you back up again.
Harsh Jul 2016
It's common knowledge that after getting a phone number,
one must wait three whole days before giving a call,
to make sure the interaction remains calculatedly casual,
as opposed to needy or uninterested,
which is complete cupid ****!
It's appalling that one's intense desire to contact an individual one is drawn to,
is not seen as a mere gesture of sentiment or affection,
but rather weakness and vulnerability.
Even in the darkest and drunkest hours
there will be no super likes,
for no one can afford to wear the heart on their sleeves,
in this world of left and right swipes.
The chase is so overrated not only does it never end,
but also overlooks the catch even when it's finally caught.
True feelings disguised by emojis concentrated into 140 characters
ridicule the ideology of love and romance,
when really we're nostalgic of the times,
we once murmured into brick sized cordless phones at wee hours in the morning,
"you hang up... nooo you hang up first..."
When did meeting the parents not become meeting the parents,
but rather the quick show of another chick to flaunt how well life is going at the moment?
When did compartmentalizing life mean pursuing romantic relationships over the weekends only?
When did to love, to want, to need, to show affection become such girly things,
those who are engulfed by romantic comedies and sensitivity did?
All I really want is to call you and tell you how much I miss you,
and just listen to you breath even if you don't have anything to say.
But, I guess I'll just wait for you to whatsapp me sometime during the weekend...
This poem is the sole property of me and cannot be copied or used without permission. [Copyright G.H. Rodrigo 27/07/2016]
Cat Fiske Mar 2016

*I can't give you my trust,
I can not get close to you,
I can not let you hold me even when I wish for you to,
I can not let you show me how you love me like others used too,

I struggle when I listen, or try to concentrate, to the things you say,
I struggle to communicate my feeling back to you in the same way,

I sometimes feel like I'm too demanding of you,
I don't know how to do the comedies of a give and take,
I feel like I sometimes only take, and leave a burden on top of you,
I constantly feel guilty for what I do to you, I feel guilty for the things I do,
I get to have you, but I am not worth someone like you,

I hope I don't hurt you too bad, on days when I am too sad,
I sometimes need to relax and detach. my dissociation won't last forever,
I know I am not perfect in this world that is so dull and grey, but I try,
I each day, have tried, I empathise more then not,

I am sorry more then not, like the fears I cry tears over,
I wish I could overcome them, I wish I could stop avoiding my past,
I wish I could forget all the bad, make memories that are good and will last,
I can't remember day to day tasks, and I can't remember anything un-sad,

I wish that when you told me things I could understand it better,
I wish I handled things better, learn to fix them on my own,
I wish I didn't depend on you for help, but I wouldn't if I could fix it myself.
I wish I stopped staying in bad places and leaving the good ones I find,

I want to not act so compulsive with these addictions that surround me,
I wish I could get rid of the overlaying grief that hangs over me,  
I wish I could move on from what has been taken from me,
I want to stop letting it exhaust me,

I am tired, but never sleep, and to sleep wouldn't help my tiredness,
I tried to sleep with you and lay down next to you wide awake,
I wish I could of been sleeping as peaceful as you,

I feel plagued by all my bad memories,
I want them to go away, because they only make it harder for you,
I know you don't love me, I know at least you shouldn't love me,
I worry that I worry you, and I don't want you to be worried about me,
I feel like you deserve more, and better, and should get it.
I want to protect you from the damage I can put upon you,
I feel the panic inside brews, and I can't rid myself from it,
I wish you would save yourself from me.

I get angry, and mad, and upset,
I do this rather then having an emotional shut down,
I hate that I lash out, I don't want to get mad at you,

I hate myself, I wish that I could love myself like I used to,
I take risks hoping that something better could happen, but it doesn't,

I feel alone,
I feel abandoned,
I feel rejected,
I feel helpless,
I feel trapped,

I know you left because you felt like this
I lost you, because of all these things,
I know what I did wrong
my ptsd ruined my relationship, this is a reflection
Polly Perks Jul 2012
So here i write. In a parking lot outside CVS in a town in Virginia, I now sit holding a notepad and the cheapest mechanical pencil money can buy, ticking away. Here I write, though I'm not sure I am (I mean I'm unsure about my existence, not my current writing state) (Yes, Descartes, I think therefore I am, but what if I don't feel?)
At this point in a story, you'd start getting hints about my 'tragic past'. Well, in reality, it might sound pretty ******. It'd go like this;

"Polly Perks, born April 17, 1993 once deeply and profoundly felt. She held lust and envy, bounded in happiness and spun out thoughtfulness, wandering with curiosity, released lust, her body was a compendium of emotions (whatever that means). And sometimes she felt them one by one or glutted herself on many feels. Then, as per usual narrative style, came a boy who made her heart beat, her brain swoon and then her insides scream all within a school year. That boy was no good for her because he was, you see, deeply forbidden (translated to exclude melodrama, he was dating her best friend, that *******). Polly carved through that summer with whiskey, daydreams, and a quiet ripping noise coming from her chest as the emotions shanked their way out. Then her dad died. Then she went to college."

You see, after I watched my father's skin turn yellow and his eyes churn milky tears, after i left behind my life with shallow and fleeting throes of excitement for books and tests, after I was finally escaped from this man-child who pulled and pushed me like a yo-yo, i made a pact subconsciously, or maybe hallucinatory, or maybe completely aware-ly, but from that day on I abandoned emotion, and so I have lived for nigh on 279 days (I made that number up, but the gist is its been awhile since me and feelings have hopped into any kind of bed).

Well today, nearly one year later, Polly has had enough with emotionless-ness. Let's get back to narration, shall we?

"One day after work Polly finds herself shaking her head. Not in a manner of saying 'no' or conveying confusion, more like a 'wet dog shaking off the rain' shake. rain is what she wants, and like a fairytale rain is coming. She hears thunder and strikes up, leaves the house and enters rain. Inside, she feels (not emotionally but in a scientific way, as if she's taking inventory of her organs and thoughts and building blocks) movement, like her pulse is bracing to start. She's felt it before this year, while watching shooting stars with a cute, drug infested boy in college, and while witnessing the comedies of friends, and after telling the nightmarish apparition of her yellowed father he died and must leave her dreams alone. She feels she should feel."

So I run. I run and run and run in the rain, and God, I'm feeling like emotions might not ****. But then the rain starts slowing, and I start skimming, and soon I'm on a tree, a fallen fractured tree upon a metal playground (there's probably symbolism in that, so go ahead and rejoice, high school english teachers). I think 'i don't want to be empty' and then I whisper it and soon I find myself standing on this tree, yelling at empty clouds and the bricks and the metal climbing bars i don't, I Don't, I DON'T.
and then... a heart beat. a strong one. I feel it.  I feel the story, I feel colors, I feel inspired and man, I feel like ****. But I'm feeling something.

"Delirious with this re-discovered feeling, Polly decide to challenge the skies. She sees a flag pole with an shiny brass eagle on top sitting as a bright and proud beacon of America, home of the free and the brave and those who eat their feelings or starve them out.She sees the clouds, she hears the thunder, and the eagle speaks. 'So you feel now, Polly? Come put it to the test. Feel reckless. Come and feel my skin, cool metal, during a lightning storm.'

So she does. And she dies. And her feelings die with her. That, or she lives to write her odd, slapdash story in a frenzy in a parking lot outside CVS, to the pitter patter of mad rain.
drumhound Mar 2014
it starts with a chug
a push of steam leaning into the next chug
more resolved even desperate
building momentum with each turn
three thoughtless words
leave the station blowing spiral exhaust
picking up sentences along the way

passengers climb aboard destination cars
riding click clack click clack lyric tracks
as they squelch an urge to peer ahead
for the blind belly-gripping corners
hiding morbid thoughts of finding themselves
somewhere in an ominous tunnel
with a villain from chapter 3

but they come anyway
paying good fare
with cash and unbartered time
reserved for such a season as this

infinite itineraries through
countrysides and comedies
mountains and mysteries
prairies and poetry
highlight endless whistle stop fantasies
predestined by curious minds
throwing line by line hypnotic leisure
into the rhythm of the wheels

beauty is revealed
through the picture windows of books

in the midst of gorgeous landscapes

undreamt dismantling jumps
hardened steel guides in these words:

...I would have been referred to religion,
the cemetery where questions of faith are answered....

the pleasant journey
comes derailed on the slip switch
possessed of both genius and sadness
for cemeteries are only death if
they are the end of the vision

tombstones create blind men
of brilliant skeptics
Lazarus lives
the tomb is empty
and the end isn't

faith puts the train upright
setting the switches to forever
bypassing graveyards
and riding to the unquenchable light.
Tommy Johnson Jan 2014
Insomnia and delirium, awake at 4 AM
The bed doesn't feel warm and cozy, like it doesn't belong to me
Everything that I desire goes against all I require to keep going
But I know I'm not the only one out here, there's more of them

I'm sure I''m not the only one who believes in love
Not the kind in saturated love songs
Or in nonsensical fabricated romantic comedies
But in the kind where the hearts beat out of time together and the sensation is expressible but the two involved can understand the ecstatic passion in their minds and bodies

I hope I am not the singled out protester
Against the back handed complements put upon those looking for a admiring passer by
The lone stargazer with a faithful notion that more is out there and we are so small in the scheme of things but just as necessary as the rest of the universe
The last of the proprietors of peace, I pray I am one of many

Raise your hand if you've felt one of the following and while your at it shed a tear for the fellow phalanges in the sky


Both of my hands are right along side yours and they may be *****, have scars and bruises
But you know what?
They still work and they're still strong and will grapple the next hardship I face
And your hand will endure to, with your heart and the sense of what you need and what you want

At the next show of hand lets raise them to see whose felt enlightened,  loved, courageous, inspired and proud

That way maybe none of us ever have to feel alone
Samantha Irene Feb 2012
Don’t believe them (the books the fairy tales the
romantic comedies
) when they tell you,
“Love will find a way.”
They are liars, spinning words like
the Serpent to Eve.

Love does not always prevail.

Sometimes, you are twenty and stupid and
far too drunk
and when you wake up in the morning, he is gone.

Sometimes you think, “I’ll tell him tomorrow,”
and tomorrow never comes.

Sometimes, he is the groom and you are the girl at the back of the church he once dated in college and forgot about.
Sometimes, you are the bride and because this isn’t Hollywood,
no one stops the wedding.

Sometimes, you wait up until four o’clock in the morning
for his call.
Sometimes, it never comes.  

Sometimes, he dies.
Sometimes, you do.

Sometimes, you fight and yell and sob into the phone to your mother—
who married too young and never really knew how to care for you anyway
but no matter how many dishes you throw,
you just can’t make it work.

Sometimes, he is a man when you marry him
and a monster by the time your daughter is born.

Sometimes, you drop your change in the supermarket, the mall, the
subway, and when your fingers brush as you both reach down to scoop up the scattered pennies and dimes, you feel that
electric shock.
You look into his deep graygreenbluebrown eyes and see
everything that will be: all the adventures not yet had, the promises not yet made—
and then, amidst all that unlived life, his wife (girlfriend, fiancé)
calls to him from twenty feet away
and those promises never get made at all.  

Sometimes, you like him and he likes the girl
with the long blonde hair and
prettier smile.

Sometimes, he likes you and you
honestly just don’t give a ****.

Sometimes, there is no Prince Charming on a great white steed coming to battle the dragon.
Sometimes, you have to save yourself.
Sometimes, survival is the only happy ending.  

Sometimes, your families are feuding and no matter how much you try,
you cannot reason with your father or mother or
whoever is keeping you apart.
Sometimes, after that, you both just die.

Sometimes, it’s all about the timing.
Sometimes, you go in one door and he goes out another,
And then you never meet.

Sometimes, you sob into your pillow and beg God to change his mind for you,
but no amount of wishing can bring him back.

Sometimes, you are separated—by culture, by Time, by
universes, by a fate that has decided to break your heart in
every way possible and then toss you out to sea just
one last time, just to see if you’ll survive.

Sometimes you never find that someone who makes your skin burn, who
drives you crazy or keeps you sane.

Sometimes, you are just lonely and then you die.

Love doesn’t always prevail.

But sometimes.

Just sometimes.

It does.
Third Eye Candy Apr 2013
the mange of our fuzzy logic is squandered on the imbecile.
and genius is the gene splice of twelve comedies.
a rogue moon in a hooligan.
it jumps the fence and can't jump back. lacking the tool
that undoes the beauty of the obvious.
that quaintly dismisses the Oh ! My ! God !
we cringe in the ether of our ignorance, spooning the villain.  
the Mind is the Common Sense Killer....
it dives and triumphs in the acetone conundrum
of our proximity to dissipation.
the bold features of our doldrums
are the perfect ugly perfection
of our flaws.
our love is the rigid agenda of a massacre.
we the people, are the juvenile, sprained wrist of a boggart !
a Fae dreary.
we have our business in the withers of dead horses.
we are well versed
in the tundra tongue of our flat humor.
we assume the rumors are true.
and the tyranny that freed you
is the misery you
love with
and your beautiful

a Thing.
brandon nagley May 2015
Tis comedic yes?
How one can giveth their all for a material good,
Yet canst giveth all thy soul to thy lover!
For thy lover is not a material,
Their ethereal, their imperial !!!
Laura Robin Feb 2013
what lips my lips have kissed,
and where,
and why;
i know not why.

what arms have held me,
and how tightly,
and how rightly;
i know not why.

he was my friend
of all friends, but
it was futile to be
just friends.
so, i
let him have me,
all of me.
nothing shatters you
like a first love.

he gets all of you,
drags away these
shards of you
that stick in his memory,
of that desperate girl who
only wanted to be loved by him.
but could not trust him,
and rightly so.

for when he has grown sick
of you,
and that girl at the party
was simply easier to be with - -
more vanilla,
less rocky road,
and he never really
loved you at
all --
something is killed
inside of you.

[but i know you did love me and i
know you still think about me,
like i still write about you.

he was my friend but
we had never been together
alone. i knew that
he wanted all of me.
and i wanted all of him.
yet, i held him,
his body trembling
in my arms,
and he was still too in love
with that other girl
to take advantage
of me.
[he loved this girl that
made him move to the states,
that lived with him and loved him,
and then loved another
and then slept, soundly, next to him
in the darkness.

i had just met him
and just kissed him
and just fell too fast for this
fast-moving man.
we strolled along the
charles, and he told me i was
beautiful and gave me a flower
like they do in those
idiotic romantic comedies
that we all can’t help but love.
and when he kissed me on
the bridge - -
grabbed my wrist and
****** me into his
- -
the city lights
illuminated our
fervent faces,
and then i let him have
most of me,
and at that hollywood moment
i forgot that
men will do these things.
and leave you naked in the night.
and say they’ll call.
[they never do.]

he was just a
flat out
there was nothing
about us.
i do always strive,
in living,
for pure poetry.

three days later,
he was another mistake.
he kissed me and i forced
the passion because i just
wanted to be close to someone
and he was there, and it was easy,
and i never should have asked
him to be with me
that night. i know that

and so, the girl i had been
so long ago
no longer exists.
and thus, i feign my
my kindness to
it's simply affectation.
because, from what i’ve
in my exceedingly dramatic life,
most people are ****.
no, seriously.
most people
are ****.

and so, why bother with recounting
what loves have come and gone,
for my innocence   is   now gone.
summer sang in me for a short while,
and these flames extinguished
its voice.

he was exactly like my first love.
an *******.
hilarious, gorgeous,
but an ******* as it was.
and still, i let him have
most of me,
and feigned my amicable demeanor,
and spent the day with him.
and when he left i cried
because i knew what this
had meant nothing to
either of us, and it was
getting to me.

for the next few months
i convinced myself that i could be
alone, that being with someone,
really being with them
would simply
dim the unrestrained sparks inside of me.
thus i realize i stand frozen in the snow - -
in winter stands the lonely tree, which is me.
and i apprehend that the ***** i give
vanish one by one.
and i apprehend that my heart
boughs more silent than ever before.

that is,
until he asks me to grab
a drink or two,
and stay the night at my
place, and says
he's looking for something
casual, at first.
and ***.
and if we were compatible,
he is o p e n
for a relationship.
and i let him have
most of me that
night. and we had
a stressless
for a while.
that is,
until i wanted him
to stay longer than an hour
[which even the *******
deign to do]
and at the drop
of a hat, in his eyes,

well maybe i am.
but he will
never know that.
because he doesn’t want

nor does he care about
the person, the woman, who inhabits
the body he has been exploiting.
he is the very opposite of poetry.
he   is    prose.
he  is   a    box
who  does not
want   to    get
attached      to
me     because
he    is  scared
as    all     hell
that      maybe
i    could    be
the     one   to
turn his prose into
a free verse, to open up his
life to love, but instead
he closeshimselfup
to me, to the notion,
hibernating in his
lovely shell.

the air  is  awash of  ghosts
tonight who  tap  and sigh,
who      long       to       take
back     the      body     they
so   readily   seized   when
it was open for them.  they
await my reply.  but in my
heart  remains a quiet pain
for   all  of  these  lads who
will         remain           now
unremembered   and  who  
will  no longer  turn  to me
at  midnight   with   a    cry,
convinced  my disguise  is
who i am.

[what they know won’t
hurt them.
but it absolutely will
hurt me.
Response to "What lips my lips have kissed, and where, and why (Sonnet XLIII)" by Edna St. Vincent Millay
Alvira Perdita Oct 2013
I want your fingers
In my hair as I lie
With my head on
Your shoulder
While we watch
Comedies late
At night

— The End —