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Serenus Raymone Jan 2013
The Blues of Langston Hughes

I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing it smooth to revive his muse

I sing it cool! I sing it loud!
I sing it jazzy! I sing it proud!

Who am I to sing it?
...I’ve got my nerve
I just can’t keep quiet,
And have my Dream Deferred

I guarantee you’ll dance
To my grand vibrato
The music will stick in your head
Until you dig my Motto

I can sing it tame
But I'd rather sing it wild
Either way it's brilliant
The lullaby of a Genius Child

I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
The tune is old, but it still reigns true

I sing it sweet
With the beat of the streets
I’m singing so good,
I got you tapping your feet

A song of truth
A song for any era
A harmony against hate
I too, sing America!

I can sing it tame
But I'd rather sing it wild
Either way it's brilliant
The lullaby of a Genius Child

A Jukebox Love Song
To set the ambiance
From ancient rivers
To the Harlem Renaissance

I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
I sing the blues of Langston Hughes!
All of the poets -who know it…
Should sing it too!
Jazzelle Monae Jun 2016
How badly I want to be in that
John Hughes film
I want the cheesy romance
That reeks of tears for fears
And looks like the **** or geek or criminal
That sixteen candle
Sitting on your 944 porche
With the credits rolling up kind of romance
Please leave your notebook at home
Locked up with a vow you don't remeber.
I want that weird science kind of chemistry
A day off involving you
I can look pretty in pink
I can look pretty in Hughes of you.
2016 © Jazzelle Monae
RAJ NANDY Jul 2017
THE LEGEND OF HOLLYWOOD IN VERSE
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

           A SHORT  HISTORICAL  BACKGROUND
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
Hollywood.
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

BACKGROU­ND:
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
fantasy.
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!

DEMAND FOR NEW THEMES DURING THE 1950s :
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.

BOX OFFICE HITS YEAR-WISE FROM 1950 To 1959 :
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
King!
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!

CONTINUING THE HOLLYWOOD STORY WITH FEW TITBITS :
From Fort Lee of New Jersey we have travelled west to Hollywood,
California.
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!

THE GOLDEN GLOBE AWARD:
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
recipient.

THE GRAMMY AWARD:
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!

CONCLUDING HOLLYWOOD STORY  WITH STUDIOS OF THE 1950s

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:
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!

20th CENTURY FOX:
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.

WARREN BROTHERS:
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.
**ALL COPYRIGHTS ARE WITH THE AUTHOR RAJ NANDY OF NEW DELHI
Donall Dempsey Jun 2019
HE DO THAT TED HUGHES IN DIFFERENT VOICES

Nothing but
- a waste land.

Crow is bored

perched upon a branch
like a haiku

waiting to happen
but where

is a haiku
poet when

one really needs one.

Crows agree to play
Charades.

One falls to the forest floor
clutching its chest shouting

"Aghhhhh ya...got me
I'm  a gonner!"

Then another and another
with a more cornier

one-liner than
the one before

looking more like spilled ink
than the last.

Crows having a blast
laughing their feathers off.

All big Film
Noir fans.

"Yeah, yeah...I got it
a ****** of crows!"

Across a hillside
a human stands

as if he had just sprouted
out of the land.

An Easter Island
of a man.

The sneer of cold command
upon those chiseled lips.

An Ozymandias!
"Look upon my mighty words and despair!"

Or more like
a granite gryphon

glaring at the crows' play
turning them over in his mind

until they
become words.

"Oh not that ******
Ted Hughes again!"

Crow mutters
to itself.

The poet unaware
that human thought

hangs frozen on the air
on such days as these.

The giant Hughes man
a poet made of iron

by some process of
emotional osmosis

absorbs their world and words
making it up as he goes along

for he great poet though he be
never learned to speak Crow.

The great man glares
at the sun

willing it into submission
the sun falters on a hillside.

He disappears into the snow
his fragile footprints

vanishing in a trice
lost to time

as if he has
never been born.

Crow does his best
impression

mocks and mimics
the human's thought.

"Nailing Heaven and earth together -

So man cried, but with God's voice.
And God bled, but with man's blood. "

A bell breaks
the sky's silence

crows scatter to
the heavens.

"Oh that Charlie
Crow...he is a one!"

One crow smirks to another.

"He do that Ted Hughes
to a tee!"
***
T.S. Eliot’s 1922 masterpiece “The Waste Land” was originally titled “He Do the Police in Different Voices,” a quote from Charles Dickens’ Our Mutual Friend.

I went to see Ted Hughes at the Royal Festival Hall after an extensive day and night shift work in mental health for about four days as staff went sick or simply didn't turn up.. Couldn't remember if I was to meet my ******* Thursday in Friday street or not or wot. I was right under his lectern and he looked immense  and a lot like Sam the Eagle in the Muppet Show in looks and manner. I kept falling asleep between syllables and would **** myself awake and every time I did so I would get that fierce Hughesian glare!
In the aftermath
Of a very hot bath
Sylvia Plath
Used to re-read
Katherine Mansfield stories
Until she felt
A little bit snory.

Whilst Ted Hughes -
After he'd imbued
The cool waters of
A shower for an hour -
Would watch Jackanory
Till he felt Hunky Dory
Then listen to Aladdin Sane
To bring him back to
The real world again.

Watch That Man!
1969 Hartford art school is magnet for exceedingly intelligent over-sensitive under-achievers alluring freaks congenital creeps and anyone who cannot cut it in straight world it is about loners dreamers stoners clowns cliques of posers competing to dress draw act most outrageous weird wonderful classrooms clash in diversity of needs some students get it right off while others require so much individual attention one girl constantly raises her hand calls for everything to be repeated explained creativity is treated as trouble and compliance to instruction rewarded most of faculty are of opinion kids are not capable of making original artwork teachers discourage students from dream of becoming well-known until they are older more experienced only practiced skilled artists are competent to create ‘real art’ defined by how much struggle or multiple meanings weave through the work Odysseus wants to make magic boxes without knowing or being informed of Joseph Cornell one teacher tells him you think you’re going to invent some new color the world has never seen? you’re just some rowdy brat from the midwest with a lot of crazy ideas and no evidence of authenticity another teacher warns you’re nothing more than a bricoleur! Odysseus questions what’s a bricoleur teacher informs a rogue handyman who haphazardly constructs from whatever is immediately available Odysseus questions what’s wrong with that? teacher answers it’s low-class folk junk  possessing no real intellectual value independently he reads Marshall McLuhan’s “The Medium Is The Message” and “The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci” he memorizes introductory remark of Leonardo’s “i must do like one who comes last to the fair and can find no other way of providing for himself than by taking all the things already seen by others and not taken by reason of their lesser value” Odysseus dreams of becoming accomplished important artist like Robert Rauschenberg Jasper Johns Andy Warhol he dreams of being in eye of hurricane New York art scene he works for university newspaper and is nicknamed crashkiss the newspaper editor is leader in student movement and folk singer who croons “45 caliber man, you’re so much more than our 22, but there’s so many more of us than you” Odysseus grows mustache wears flower printed pants vintage 1940’s leather jacket g.i. surplus clothes he makes many friends his gift for hooking up with girls is uncanny he is long haired drug-crazed hippie enjoying popularity previously unknown to him rock bands play at art openings everyone flirts dances gets ****** lots of activism on campus New York Times dubs university of Hartford “Berkeley of the east coast” holding up ******* in peace sign is subversive in 1969 symbol of rebellion youth solidarity gesture against war hawks rednecks corporate America acknowledgment of potential beyond materialistic self-righteous values of status quo sign of what could be in universe filled with incredible possibilities he moves in with  painting student one year advanced named Todd Whitman Todd has curly blond hair sturdy build wire rimmed glasses impish smile gemini superb draftsman amazing artist Todd emulates Francisco de Goya and Albrecht Durer Todd’s talent overshadows Odysseus’s Todd’s dad is accomplished professor at distinguished college in Massachusetts to celebrate Odysseus’s arrival Todd cooks all day preparing spaghetti dinner when Odysseus arrives home tripping on acid without appetite Todd is disappointed Odysseus runs down to corner store buys large bottle of wine returns to house Todd is eating spaghetti alone they get drunk together then pierce each other’s ears with needles ice wine cork pierced ears are outlaw style of bad *** bikers like Hell’s Angels Todd says you are a real original Odys and funny too Odysseus asks funny, how? Todd answers you are one crazy ******* drop acid whenever you want smoke **** then go to class this is fun tonight Odys getting drunk and piercing our ears Odysseus says yup i’m having a good time too Todd and Odysseus become best friends Odysseus turns Todd on to Sylvia Plath’s “The Bell Jar” and “Ariel” then they both read Ted Hughes “Crow” illustrated with Leonard Baskin prints Todd turns Odysseus on to German Expressionist painting art movement of garish colors emotionally violent imagery from 1905-1925 later infuriating Third ***** who deemed the work “degenerate” Odysseus dives into works of Max Beckmann Otto Dix Conrad Felixmulller Barthel Gilles George Grosz Erich Heckel Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Felix Nussbaum Karl *******Rottluff Carl Hofer August Macke Max Peckstein Elfriede Lohse-Wachtler Egon Shiele list goes on in 1969 most parents don’t have money to buy their children cars most kids living off campus either ride bikes or hitchhike to school then back home on weekends often without a penny in their pockets Odysseus and Todd randomly select a highway and hitch rides to Putney Vermont Brattleboro Boston Cape Cod New York City or D.C. in search of adventure there is always trouble to be found curious girls to assist in Georgetown Odysseus sleeps with skinny girl with webbed toes who believes he is Jesus he tries to dissuade her but she is convinced

Toby Mantis is visiting New York City artist at Hartford art school he looks like huskier handsomer version of Ringo Starr and women dig him he builds stretchers and stretches canvases for Warhol lives in huge loft in Soho on Broadway and Bleeker invites Odysseus to come down on weekends hang out Toby takes him to Max’s Kansas City Warhol’s Electric Circus they wander all night into morning there are printing companies longshoremen gays in Chelsea Italians in West Village hippies playing guitars protesting the war in Washington Square all kinds of hollering crazies passing out fliers pins in Union Square Toby is hard drinker Odysseus has trouble keeping up  he pukes his guts out number of times Odysseus is *** head not drinker he explores 42nd Street stumbles across strange exotic place named Peep Show World upstairs is large with many **** cubicles creepy dudes hanging around downstairs is astonishing there are many clusters of booths with live **** girls inside girls shout out hey boys come on now pick me come on boys there are hundreds of girls from all over the world in every conceivable size shape race he enters dark stall  puts fifty cents in coin box window screen lifts inside each cluster are 6 to 10 girls either parading or glued to a window for $1 he is allowed to caress kiss their ******* for $2 he is permitted to probe their ****** or *** for $10 girl reaches hand into darkened stall jerks him off tall slender British girl thrills him the most she says let me have another go at your dickey Odysseus spends all his money ******* 5 times departing he notices men from every walk of life passing through wall street stockbrokers executives rednecks mobsters frat boys tourists fat old bald guys smoking thick smelly cigars Toby Mantis has good-looking girlfriend named Lorraine with long brown hair Toby Lorraine and Odysseus sit around kitchen table Odysseus doodles with pencil on paper Toby spreads open Lorraine’s thighs exposing her ****** to Odysseus Lorraine blushes yet permits Toby to finger her Odysseus thinks she has the most beautiful ****** he has ever seen bulging pelvic bone brown distinctive bush symmetric lips Toby and Lorraine watch in amusement as Odysseus gazes intently Tony mischievously remarks you like looking at that ***** don’t you? Odysseus stares silently begins pencil drawing Lorraine’s ****** his eyes darting back and forth following day Lorraine seduces Odysseus while Toby is away walks out **** from shower she is few years older her body lean with high ******* she directs his hands mouth while she talks with someone on telephone it is strange yet quite exciting Odysseus is in awe of New York City every culture in the world intermingling democracy functioning in an uncontrollable managed breath millions of people in motion stories unraveling on every street 24 hour spectacle with no limits every conceivable variety of humanity ******* in same air Odysseus is bedazzled yet intimidated

Odysseus spends summer of 1970 at art colony in Cummington Massachusetts it is magical time extraordinary place many talented eccentric characters all kinds of happenings stage plays poetry readings community meals volleyball after dinner volleyball games are hilarious fun he lives alone in isolated studio amidst wild raspberries in woods shares toilet with field mouse no shower he reads Jerzy Kosinski’s “Painted Bird” then “Being There” then “Steps” attractive long haired girl named Pam visits community for weekend meets Odysseus they talk realize they were in first grade together at Harper amazing coincidence automatic ground for “we need to have *** because neither of us has seen each other since first grade” she inquires where do you sleep? Todd hitches up from Hartford to satisfy curiosity everyone sleeps around good-looking blue-eyed poet named Shannon Banks from South Boston tells Odysseus his ******* is not big enough for kind of ******* she wants but she will **** him off that’s fine with him 32 year old poet named Ellen Morrissey from Massachusetts reassures him ******* is fine Ellen is beginning to find her way out from suffocating marriage she has little daughter named Nina Ellen admires Odysseus’s free spirit sees both his possibilities and naïveté she realizes he has crippling family baggage he has no idea he is carrying thing about trauma is as it is occurring victim shrugs laughs to repel shock yet years later pain horror sink in turned-on with new ideas he returns to Hartford art school classes are fun yet confusing he strives to be best drawer most innovative competition sidetracks him Odysseus uses power drill to carve pumpkin on Halloween teachers warn him to stick to fundamentals too much creativity is suspect Todd and he are invited to holiday party Odysseus shows up with Ellen Morrissey driving in her father’s station wagon 2 exceptionally pretty girls flirt with him he is live wire they sneak upstairs he fingers both at same time while they laugh to each other one of the girls Laura invites him outside to do more he follows they walk through falling snow until they find hidden area near some trees Laura lies down lifts her skirt she spreads her legs dense ***** mound he is about to explore her there when Laura looks up sees figure with flashlight following their tracks in snow she warns it’s Bill my husband run for your life! Odysseus runs around long way back inside party grabs a beer pretending he has been there next to Ellen all night few minutes later he sees Laura and Bill return through front door Bill has dark mustache angry eyes Odysseus tells Ellen it is late maybe they should leave soon suddenly Bill walks up to him with beer in hand cracks bottle over his head glass and beer splatter Odysseus jumps up runs out to station wagon Ellen hurriedly follows snow coming down hard car is wedged among many guest vehicles he starts engine locks doors maneuvers vehicle back and forth trying to inch way out of spot Bill appears from party walks to his van disappears from out of darkness swirling snow Bill comes at them wielding large crowbar smashes car’s headlights taillights side mirrors windshield covered in broken glass Ellen ducks on floor beneath glove compartment sobs cries he’s going to **** us! we’re going to die! Odysseus steers station wagon free floors gas pedal drives on back country roads through furious snowstorm in dark of night no lights Odysseus contorts crouches forward in order to see through hole in shattered windshield Ellen sees headlights behind them coming up fast it is Bill in van Bill banging their bumper follows them all the way back to Hartford to Odysseus’s place they run inside call police Bill sits parked van outside across street as police arrive half hour later Bill pulls away next day Odysseus and Ellen drive to Boston to explain to Ellen’s dad what has happened to his station wagon Odysseus stays with Ellen in Brookline for several nights another holiday party she wants to take him along to meet her friends her social circles are older he thinks to challenge their values be outrageous paints face Ellen is horrified cries you can’t possibly do this to me these are my close friends what will they think? he defiantly answers my face is a mask who cares what i look like? man woman creature what does it matter? if your friends really want to know me they’ll need to look beyond the make-up tonight i am your sluttish girlfriend! sometimes Odysseus can be a thoughtless fool

Laura Rousseau Shane files for divorce from Bill she is exceptionally lovely models at art school she is of French descent her figure possessing exotic traits she stands like ballerina with thick pointed ******* copious ***** hair Odysseus is infatuated she frequently dances pursues him Laura says i had the opportunity to meet Bob Dylan once amazed Odysseus questions what did you do? she replies what could i possibly have in common with Bob Dylan? Laura teases Odysseus about being a preppy then lustfully gropes him grabs holds his ***** they devote many hours to ****** intimacy during ******* she routinely reaches her hand from under her buns grasps his testicles squeezing as he pumps he likes that Laura is quite eccentric fetishes over Odysseus she even thrills to pick zits on his back he is not sure if it is truly a desire of hers proof of earthiness or simply expression of mothering Laura has two daughters by Bill Odysseus is in over his head Laura tells Odysseus myth of Medea smitten with love for Jason Jason needs Medea’s help to find Golden Fleece Medea agrees with promise of marriage murders her brother arranges ****** of king who has deprived Jason his inheritance couple is forced into exile Medea bears Jason 2 sons then Jason falls in love with King Creon’s daughter deserts Medea is furious she makes shawl for King Creon’s daughter to wear at her wedding to Jason  shawl turns to flames killing bride Medea murders her own sons by Jason Odysseus goes along with story for a while but Laura wants husband Odysseus is merely scruffy boy with roving eyes Laura becomes galled by Odysseus leaves him for one of his roommates whom she marries then several years later divorces there is scene when Laura tells Odysseus she is dropping him for his roommate he is standing in living room of her house space is painted deep renaissance burgundy there are framed photographs on walls in one photo he is hugging Laura and her daughters under big oak tree in room Laura’s friend Bettina other girl he fingered first night he met Laura at party is watching with arms crossed he drops to floor curls body sobs i miss you so much Laura turns to Bettina remarks look at him men are such big babies he’s pitiful Bettina nods

following summer he works installing displays at G. Fox Department Store besides one woman gay men staff display department for as long as he can remember homosexuals have always been attracted to him this misconception is probably how he got job his tenor voice suggesting not entirely mature man instead more like tentative young boy this ambiguous manifestation sometimes also evidences gestures thoroughly misleading after sidestepping several ****** advances one of his co-workers bewilderingly remarks you really are straight manager staff are fussy chirpy catty group consequently certain he is not gay they discriminate against him stick him with break down clean up slop jobs at outdoor weekend rock concert in Constitution Plaza he meets 2 younger blond girls who consent to go back to his place mess around both girls are quite dazzling yet one is somewhat physically undeveloped they undress and model for Odysseus radio plays Roberta Flack’s “Killing Me Softly With His Song” both girls move to rhythm sing along he thinks to orchestrate direct decides instead to let them lead lies on bed while curvaceous girl rides his ******* slender girl sits on his face they switch all 3 alternate giggle laughter each girl reaches ****** on his stiffness later both assist with hands mouths his ****** is so intense it leaves him paralyzed for a moment

in fall he is cast as Claudius in production of Hamlet Odysseus rehearses diligently on nights o
hi dudes this briano alliano up here on saturn to welcome richie benaud and i can guarantee

the cosmos is blessed to have a great man, and here is richie singing come on aussie come on

hi everyone, i say hello to saturn

you see lillee pounded down like a machine

taylor was the best captain you’ll ever seen

brett lee got a hat trick, merv, kim and phil hughes were pretty rad yeah

till phil hughes died last year oh yeah

thommo is pounding like another machine

as a bowler he was very fast and mean

you see he will pick up wickets, while the outfielders clearing pickets

and the chappell eyes, have got their eyes on the green

then pascoe is making divvits in the green

border ordered his players around like noone you’ve ever seen

and rod marsh took some catches like healy and haddin, to win those matches

and i remember joel garner and micheal holding cleaned us out, oh yeseree

we still went, come on aussies come on, come on, come on aussies come on

after that small song, ritchie benaud took phil hughes on the cosmic turf, where my dad and mark jones

and tony grieg and rob douglas and stan niemic and phil hughes and many many more, and crocus’s earth body brian allan

played cricket at john knight memorial park, i made some great hook shots, it was cool, dad who had bias long legs

hit 34 runs off 45 *****, yeah and dad gave a methane smoothie to richie, saying welcome to the cosmos, and

mark jones hit 23 off 34 ***** and gave richie a new earth drink coca cola life, which is a drink which will put you

in touch with the cosmos, congratulations richie, marks my name, you will come back to earth when the cosmos is ready

to let you return and tony grieg scored 123 off 112 ***** and after that, he gave richie benaud a methane smoothie

and rob douglas got 87 off 100 *****, but rob said, good on you richie, you’ll a fine player, and tipped methane all over

richie saying, good job old pal, and stan niemic scored 123 off 123, and going at a run a ball, stan was happy, and when he finished

he poured methane all over saying welcome to the cosmos, and phil hughes scored 56 off 56 and went over to richie tippe

tipped a keg of methane on him and said thanks mate old chum old pal for those kind words and the other players together averaged at 123 off 122 *****

and richie benaud had methane smoothies all over him and at the end every player went into saturn club rings

to have a great celebration for the great richie benead with a lot of bottles and kegs of coca cola life, which will,

improve the quality of their lives on earth, and everyone was dripping with methane and might i add malcolm marshall bowled

very well as the official bowler getting 34 wickets, now malcolm marshall is matty b, on youtube, but this game was in honour

of the great richie benaud, welcomed to the cosmos and malcolm poured a bit of coca cola life on richie saying you love life, dude

and briano alliano came out and said

ritchie was the best commentator you’ll ever seen

you see i watched him on channel nine congratulate the gold and green

you see here everyone, welcome this great man

to the cosmos, he’s the happiest in the land

welcome ritchie benaud yeseree

the world will miss him, oh yeah you see

because you hosted nines coverage, of the cricket, well done mate

now what will buddha do with you

come on aussies come on come on, come on aussies come on

well done, ritchie benaud, WELCOME

see you next time, this was a great cosmic cricket match, dudes

now the saturn club rings was filled with methane, PARTY ON, to next life, ritchie
Caroline Grace Dec 2011
Attended by old friends and mentors
the Great Bear's name is set in stone.
Protected by the roof of his architectural cave
his undying lines resound
in the celebrated corner of words.



copyright © Caroline Grace 2011
unnamed Dec 2014
Dreams by Langston Hughes
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Dreams by Langston Hughes
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Donall Dempsey Sep 2018
HOW UNPLEASANT TO KNOW MR. CROW

"Hello!" said the crow.
"Hello?" I answered

thinking: ("Talking to crows
is a bit of a no-no?")

"Do I know you?"
I asked politely.

"I'm Ted Hughes' CROW
....you know!"

"I didn't know that!
I admitted.

"You look like every other crow there is to know."
I impolitely pointed out.

"Every crow is CROW!"
it pointedly pointed out.

"Say...something Ted Hughes-ish then!"
I challenged it.

"In the beginning was..."
"...scream!" crow screamed

and then a load of begatting
to give the Bible a run for its money.

Nothing and Never both begatted
to make crow.

It made me remember the only time
I had been in Mr. Hughes' presence.

One shift leading into another shift and yet another shift so that
it was falling with tiredness I was.

Was it on Thursday I was
to meet the girlfriend

on Friday Street or
Friday I...just didn't know no more.

Ted grasped the podium
with crooked  hands

as if he were Tennyson's EAGLE
or a Heathcliff grown old.

He glared down on me.
I trying not to fall asleep.

He like a cliff come alive
as if rocks could talk.

His words....CROW'S words.

Ted now
merging into the crow

gazing upon me as if
I were carrion.

Crow now losing his human voice.

His raucous caw
echoing inside my head

as he takes to the skies.

I should have listened to
what my mum said.

"Don't talk to strange corvids!"
Kewayne Wadley May 2018
In the morning her eyes paint the cities horizon.
Stretching and yawning.
Getting dressed; Her blue tapestry.
Opening the door to her apartment
She climbs down broken stairs.
It's payday Friday.
The mail man is late again.
Opening her box closing it right back.
She considers direct deposit,
Climbing back up those old creaks in the stairs.
To a notice on the door.
Excessive noise complaint
Rent past due
Bill murray Mar 2016
To my friend
Bill Hughes
Who just lost his kitten

Hope that lonesomeness
Gets back in its cube
With all the other itches.

To my friend
Billy Hughes
Dear rhymester of hellopoetry
And SoundCloud.

If you need a Bud
I'm here with love
I can be your cat for a day
And speak to you as a friend.
Long live your black cat.
He's eating mice by heavens dozen,
His life has just started
It didint end.
David Adamson Feb 2019
The place smells the same. Garlic, undergraduate angst, oven flame.  The menu hasn’t changed. The Antony and Cleopatra.  Italian sausage and snake meat. The Macbeth. Cooked in a cauldron.  Blood sauce won’t wash off. The Julius Caesar.  Served bottom side up.  You have to knife it from the back. The Timon of Athens. Only bitter, separate ingredients, overcooked to black. The Frankenstein.  Assembled from ingredients at hand.  Served smoking from a jolt of high voltage. The Dramatic Irony. It’s a surprise.  Everyone at your table knows what you’re getting while you cover your eyes.

You said tragedy means playing out a ****** hand. The game has to end badly. Bigger Thomas. Joe Christmas.  Hamlet.  Everybody dies.  No choices. The end. I said, no, it means you have a fatal flaw.  Macbeth and Ted Kennedy—ruthless ambition.  Gatsby—pride. Lear—vanity. Richard Nixon—douchebaggery, deep-fried. Bad choices.  

“Can’t be both,” you said.  “One is character, the other one’s fate.” “What if character is fate?” I asked smugly. “Then we’re *******, Heraclitus. It’s late.”

I smoked a pipe.  You wore a beret and severely bobbed hair. I wrote sarcastic love letters to the universe. You wrote hate lyrics to Ted Hughes, love notes to Jane Eyre. We kept relations on an intellectual plane. You had a set of big firm ideas, dark-eyed principles, and a dimpled scorn of life’s surly crap. My eloquence was tall, square-jawed, curly, tan.  Together we solved the world’s big problems as only undergraduates can.

“Can pizza be tragic; or is it merely postponed farce?” I wondered. “Here it is clearly both, though not at the same time,” you said. “Does tragedy plus time equal comedy?” “Sounds right.” “No, tragedy plus time is any order in this place on a Saturday night.” After what seems like decades our orders finally arrive.  

“What did you get?” I asked.  “Looks like the Double Tragic,” you replied. “Flawed choices and fate. I leave you. You were unfaithful to every love sonnet you ever wrote.  Yet you are the first man who makes me feel loved, the only one who ever will.  I strain for that feeling again and again but it becomes a boulder that keeps rolling back down the hill. And fate—my beautiful ******* that got so much attention from men will **** me.  The only thing they will ever nurse is a cancerous seed. You?”

“The Too-Many-Choices, done to perfection. Choosing everything means choosing nothing. Loving too many women, I love none.  I follow a simple path home but try to stay lost. Living in the space between lost and found has a cost.  My life becomes a solitary pilgrimage to no place.”

“Let’s not reduce our lives to a Harry Chapin song,” we agreed. So we toasted the beauty of what never was. I went back to my hotel to write, found my way to a few easy truths, and called it a night.
if i was a pearl i’d feel itchy scratchy stuck inside an oyster shell if i was a tree i’d  be a big fat redwood fantasizing about Julia Butterfly Hill living and peeing around me if i was a dog i’d be a Catahoula hound if i was Italian i’d be Sicilian if i was pasta i’d be spaghetti if i was Icelandic i’d be Bjork if i was a rock star i’d be Elvis Presley Bob Dylan Jimi Hendrix Jim Morrison John Lennon Bruce Spingsteen Maynard James Keenan if i was i writer i’d be Herman Melville Mark Twain James Joyce William Faulkner Thomas Bernhard Yukio Mishima Naguib Mahfouz Phillip K. **** Gabriel Garcia Marquez Annie Proulx Lydia Davis if i was a poet i’d be Walt Whitman Sylvia Plath Ted Hughes Gwendolyn Brooks Pablo Neruda  Heather McHugh Carl Sandburg Robert Frost Arthur Rimbaud Dante Alighieri Homer if i was a painter i’d be Leonardo Da Vinci Michelangelo da Caravaggio Johan Vermeer Rembrandt van Rijn Paul Cezanne Marcel Duchamp Jackson ******* Mark Rothko Ad Reinhardt Anselm Kiefer Susan Rothenberg if i was a photographer i’d be Man Ray Ansel Adams Edward Weston Diane Arbus Robert Mapplethorpe Sally Mann Helmut Newton Richard Avedon Annie Leibovitz if i was a philosopher i’d be Socrates Plato Aristotle Jean Jacques Rousseau Sören Kierkegaard Immanuel Kant Karl Marx Georg Hegel Friedrich Nietzsche Henry David Thoreau Ralph Waldo Emerson  Jean-Paul Sartre Jean Baudrillard Michel Foucault if i was a singer i’d be Woody Guthrie Otis Redding Grace Slick Bob Marley Joni Mitchell Marvin Gaye Johnny Cash Patsy Cline June Carter Patti Smith Chrissie Hinde Nick Cave P J Harvey Beyonce if i wa a band i’d be Velvet Underground Ramones *** Pistols Clash Cure Smiths Joy Division Uncle Tupelo Pixies Nirvana Nine Inch Nails Madrugada Sigur Ros White Stripes Thee Silver Mt. Zion Memorial Orchestra Justice of the Unicorns if i was a boot i’d be Chippewa Frye Ariat Red Wing Tony Lama Wellington if i was a shoe i’d be Christian Louboutin Jimmy Choo Kedds Chaco Chuck Taylor p f flyer if i was a dress i’d be Channel Dolce & Gabbanna Giorgio Armani Marc Jacobs Comme des Garçons if i was a cowboy shirt i’d be H bar C Rockmount Temp Tex Karman Wrangler Levis Strauss Lee if i was a hat i’d be a Stetson Borsalino Stephen Jones if i was a fruit i’d be a mango apple banana blackberry if i was an scent i’d smell like fresh perspiration jasmine sandalwood ylang ylang the ocean if i was a doctor i’d be a gynecologist neurosurgeon if i was a flower i’d be a hibiscus rose orchard if i was a stone i’d be a sparkling ruby diamond opal if i was a knife i’d be a k-bar switch-blade machete if i was a gun i’d be a Remington Winchester Beretta Glock AK-47 if i was a car i’d be a Lamborghini Ferrari BMW Saab Volkswagen GTO Ford Mustang Dodge Challenger if i was a  TV show i’d be Law and Order if i was actor i’d be Charlie Chaplin Humphrey Bogart Steve McQueen Robert De Niro Ed Norton Shawn Penn if i was an actress i’d be Marlene Dietrich Ingrid Bergman Natalie Wood Audrey Hepburn Marilyn Monroe Helen Mirren  Meryil Streep Brigette Fonda Robin Wright Julianne Moore Angie Harmon if i was a female comedian i’d be Gilda Radner Lily Tomlin Nora Dunn Joan Cusack Sarah Silverman Tina Fey if i was a  football player i’d be Sid Luckman George Blanda Walter Payton **** Butkus Mike Singletary Joe Montana Jerry Rice Payton Manning LaDanian Tomlinson  Drew Breeze if i was a celebrity i’d be Charlotte Gainsbourg if i was a rapper i’d be Tupac Shakur if i was a movie director i’d be Sam Peckinpah Robert Altman Stanley Kubrick Roman Polanski Werner Herzog Rainer Fassbinder Louis Bunuel Alfred Hitchcock Jean-Luc Godard François Truffaut if i was a bird i’d be a eagle hawk sparrow bluebird if i was a fish i’d be a dolphin shark narwhal Charlie the tuna if i was breakfast i’d be a French toast pancake folded in half with 2 strips of bacon in between if i was a cold cereal i’d be snap crackle popping rice crispies shredded wheat cheerios oatmeal if i was tea i’d be Japanese green matcha Irish breakfast Tulsi Thai holy basil Lapsang souchong Luzianne Lipton if i was a soap i’d be French hand milled ayurvedic Avon Ivory Dove Pears Aveda  if i was a man i’d be a football basketball baseball tennis swimmer athlete if i was a woman i’d be a track star runner writer painter gardener doctor nurse yoga mom i'm just scratching the surface and the beat goes on lahdy dah dah
What happened that night? Your final night.
Double, treble exposure
Over everything. Late afternoon, Friday,
My last sight of you alive.
Burning your letter to me, in the ashtray,
With that strange smile. Had I bungled your plan?
Had it surprised me sooner than you purposed?
Had I rushed it back to you too promptly?
One hour later—-you would have been gone
Where I could not have traced you.
I would have turned from your locked red door
That nobody would open
Still holding your letter,
A thunderbolt that could not earth itself.
That would have been electric shock treatment
For me.
Repeated over and over, all weekend,
As often as I read it, or thought of it.
That would have remade my brains, and my life.
The treatment that you planned needed some time.
I cannot imagine
How I would have got through that weekend.
I cannot imagine. Had you plotted it all?

Your note reached me too soon—-that same day,
Friday afternoon, posted in the morning.
The prevalent devils expedited it.
That was one more straw of ill-luck
Drawn against you by the Post-Office
And added to your load. I moved fast,
Through the snow-blue, February, London twilight.
Wept with relief when you opened the door.
A huddle of riddles in solution. Precocious tears
That failed to interpret to me, failed to divulge
Their real import. But what did you say
Over the smoking shards of that letter
So carefully annihilated, so calmly,
That let me release you, and leave you
To blow its ashes off your plan—-off the ashtray
Against which you would lean for me to read
The Doctor’s phone-number.
                                                 My escape
Had become such a hunted thing
Sleepless, hopeless, all its dreams exhausted,
Only wanting to be recaptured, only
Wanting to drop, out of its vacuum.
Two days of dangling nothing. Two days gratis.
Two days in no calendar, but stolen
From no world,
Beyond actuality, feeling, or name.

My love-life grabbed it. My numbed love-life
With its two mad needles,
Embroidering their rose, piercing and tugging
At their tapestry, their ****** tattoo
Somewhere behind my navel,
Treading that morass of emblazon,
Two mad needles, criss-crossing their stitches,
Selecting among my nerves
For their colours, refashioning me
Inside my own skin, each refashioning the other
With their self-caricatures,

Their obsessed in and out. Two women
Each with her needle.

                                       That night
My dellarobbia Susan. I moved
With the circumspection
Of a flame in a fuse. My whole fury
Was an abandoned effort to blow up
The old globe where shadows bent over
My telltale track of ashes. I raced
From and from, face backwards, a film reversed,
Towards what? We went to Rugby St
Where you and I began.
Why did we go there? Of all places
Why did we go there? Perversity
In the artistry of our fate
Adjusted its refinements for you, for me
And for Susan. Solitaire
Played by the Minotaur of that maze
Even included Helen, in the ground-floor flat.
You had noted her—-a girl for a story.
You never met her. Few ever met her,
Except across the ears and raving mask
Of her Alsatian. You had not even glimpsed her.
You had only recoiled
When her demented animal crashed its weight
Against her door, as we slipped through the hallway;
And heard it choking on infinite German hatred.

That Sunday night she eased her door open
Its few permitted inches.
Susan greeted the black eyes, the unhappy
Overweight, lovely face, that peeped out
Across the little chain. The door closed.
We heard her consoling her jailor
Inside her cell, its kennel, where, days later,
She gassed her ferocious kupo, and herself.

Susan and I spent that night
In our wedding bed. I had not seen it
Since we lay there on our wedding day.
I did not take her back to my own bed.
It had occurred to me, your weekend over,
You might appear—-a surprise visitation.
Did you appear, to tap at my dark window?
So I stayed with Susan, hiding from you,
In our own wedding bed—-the same from which
Within three years she would be taken to die
In that same hospital where, within twelve hours,
I would find you dead.
                                                  Monday morning
I drove her to work, in the City,
Then parked my van North of Euston Road
And returned to where my telephone waited.

What happened that night, inside your hours,
Is as unknown as if it never happened.
What accumulation of your whole life,
Like effort unconscious, like birth
Pushing through the membrane of each slow second
Into the next, happened
Only as if it could not happen,
As if it was not happening. How often
Did the phone ring there in my empty room,
You hearing the ring in your receiver—-
At both ends the fading memory
Of a telephone ringing, in a brain
As if already dead. I count
How often you walked to the phone-booth
At the bottom of St George’s terrace.
You are there whenever I look, just turning
Out of Fitzroy Road, crossing over
Between the heaped up banks of ***** sugar.
In your long black coat,
With your plait coiled up at the back of your hair
You walk unable to move, or wake, and are
Already nobody walking
Walking by the railings under Primrose Hill
Towards the phone booth that can never be reached.
Before midnight. After midnight. Again.
Again. Again. And, near dawn, again.

At what position of the hands on my watch-face
Did your last attempt,
Already deeply past
My being able to hear it, shake the pillow
Of that empty bed? A last time
Lightly touch at my books, and my papers?
By the time I got there my phone was asleep.
The pillow innocent. My room slept,
Already filled with the snowlit morning light.
I lit my fire. I had got out my papers.
And I had started to write when the telephone
****** awake, in a jabbering alarm,
Remembering everything. It recovered in my hand.
Then a voice like a selected weapon
Or a measured injection,
Coolly delivered its four words
Deep into my ear: ‘Your wife is dead.’
Birthday Letters, published in 1998, is a collection of poetry by English poet and children's writer Ted Hughes. Released only months before Hughes's death, This collection of eighty-eight poems is widely considered to be Hughes' most explicit response to the suicide of his estranged wife Sylvia Plath in 1963, and to their widely discussed, politicized and "explosive" marriage. (From Wikipedia)

This is one of my favorite poems. Coldly emotional, gripping, and much more
Martin Narrod May 2015
Martin Narrod  just now
I started working on a comment in response to "Filling A Bottle With A Tundish"

Sadly I must admit, that even for an American with a college degree, who is a self-proclaimed non-Philistine that grew up in a suburb of Chicago, IL. Where I'm from I've been told is much like some parts of Sussex(I believe it's Sussex), my friend Lili Wilde described it to me on an occasion.

So I must say martin, that for having a voracious appetite for language, language of all sorts, from **** to sin, to cinephile to cynosure, pulchritude to tup, exsuphlocate to masticate, irate, irk, perfervid, wan ewes thwapping their tails, nearly stridulating like the cricket in the thistle. The advanced undulate troche of domesticated shadows, and the sesquipedelien dulciloquent surreptitious diction and other floccinaucinihilipilification and tomfoolery about.

martin, please do tell me what a 'Tundish" is? If you haven't yet, there is a phenomenally interesting reverse dictionary, entitled onelook.com/reversedictionary , and quite contrary as it may seem, and for all the Virginia & Leonard Woolf I enjoy reading, especially his somewhat innocuously underrated novella he wrote, I also read with extraordinary gratitude Ted Hughes's The Birthday Letters, Take of a Bride Groom, The Complete Works, Sylvia Plath's Unabridged Journals, Ariel, Johnny Panic, Ariel, and other poems by writer Richard Matthews. I am still unfamiliar with this word, Tundish. Online dictionaries don't give the best explanation.

As I was mentioning earlier. The OneLook Dictionary-Reverse, will let you for example, search: beach sand. And in response it will give you up to thousands and thousands of word which relate to those two words, together, seperately, and opposing each other. Such as: water, swell, wave, arenose, peat, dirt, seagull, Pacific Ocean, suntan, bikini, The Beach Boys, vitrify. It's very fun indeed. From one Martin to another, I hope you'll stay in touch. I'm excited about your work!

Best Regards

Martin

P.S. The text below is the original message I typed before learning that my presumptions of you being Anglican were correct. Have a great day!

Another Martin, YES! How exquisite, I've never met another one. I have so many questions I barely know where to start. I love marigolds, nose-bags with oats, and as I started feeling the essences if equus and what lurking prurient pedagogy for the didactic zoology that took me and the mind of me to wonder perhaps if though I am quite certain(though not 100%) that your native tongue is English, but using that ridiculous skill-set of immense benality I seem to someone have, am I wrong for asking dear Martin, are you from Scotland or Wales, or maybe even from a country where you learnt English as a native tongue but it's your secondary language?

As aforementioned, there are a plethora of questions that this runnel of sludge and dross that've now arisen in the turpidity of your antiquary of delightful speech. To whomever invited me to play along in the debauchery, and dance merrily with merriment, mine younger docile succubus's slendering beside me, puking up their tissue paper and vegetable soup, so that my pretty girls can fit into Size 2 TuTu's, and learnedly imprison themselves into the tatterdemalion of portentously lurid self-****** and abuse. , and the opprobrious trollop-gossip the gaggle of my skinny victim women eschewing food groups, in order to appeal to my conservative eyes, thrice the child's wild idling to absorb the rancor of their stoic and noisome sedentary lifestyle in the polluted sudatorium that I myself don't use, but that these nonparticular Philistines would serve as Surf & Turf with glazed Christmas Hams for the Hebrews to eat, and another sad storm surge on another deserted quay of sea sands, and our vessel and our deserters, worshipping the Virunga, sacrificing the ghost skeletons of the million year old ape. So I ask you. If even you're capable of expressing yourself under the maddening yet advesperating evening listening to Miles Kane and The Arctic Monkeys, followed by listening to Black Sabbath play Fairies Wear Boots while we drink our childhoods free of the rod and **** the war out of our teenage girlfriends. And in the morning when awoken by the sound of Sopwith Camels arriving on the early, frost-strewn milky, azure-banded stripes of moonlit ecstasy that make for this unquantifiable gesture of succinct believers driving in Summer get stopped for blowing a rice-white swiveling consortium of dishonest affair rivaling ****** addicts, with hummus, plastic bags, and forks in their sphincters, while they autoerotically asphyxiate themselves in a plastic knockoff Mickey Mouse hat, and a Pirates of the Carribbean bandana wrapped around the ***** eyed nightmare of having unsuccessfully sedated a 400-lb crabby, Lowland living-room Silverback Gorilla. More than a primate and a prostate exam. It's like posthumously straining to push tingling 119° Vaseline through the grey and white coffee stirrers which spilled all over the floor while I was saying goodbye to our daughter, while also explaining to you why it's so important to me you love me back enough so that everyone has enough of a grasping glint at understanding yourself, that in managing to reason the arithmetic of such a conundrum and confusing calamity, a phone call free of dial tone happens to be surrendered to an independent Christian organization of the state while myself and my wife's two sons, our sons, Thomas and James, have enough free time from complaining to hire an attorney to disclose the arraignment reiterated by both legal council, city council, and the Screenwriters Guild of counsellors struggling from methamphetamine addiction.

Peace Be With You.

Martin Narrod
[email protected]
Response to Filling A Bottle With A Tundish by Martin
Martin Narrod Apr 2014
angry men who do not know I do not have a dollar or a cig to spare. Ugly irrefutable contagion-handed howlers. Angry mischievous heathens that pantomime on 6:00a.m. sidewalk, Wicker Park gallow stop-sign, choreographed gutter-punk drunk walk. And of all he wants and could ever want splits down his gooey membrane brain in the outline of a noun shaped fragment of a clause, "Couldja spare 80¢ for the train," but of course I don't spare on the ellipsis or the period. Semi-colons I won't! My rubber-bottomed leather boots lash out, heavy scraping sounds trail this mirrored shadow half an angle behind me.

*****!! Blonde framed sunglasses from American Apparel, a gift from my sister in a folded Ray-Ban case is scattered on last nights bedroom floor, my girlfriend has certainly not noticed, the gloom-coated morning sun spray has not noticed; but I have unzipped a fissure in the ocular lens. My heart skips a beat. Her bedroom might as well have swallowed them whole. Now the house can halt and have the shade, swaying in Spring air in 10:22a.m. shadows. The aviator himself Howard Hughes would strike me with his 488 aircraft. Edwin Starr in his invincible sinister calypso of War would turn me round. I was sturdy as a rock until I began to forget my forgottens. These unknown unknowns I knew I needed. I'm over a quarter-century on to noon going nowhere- and quite blindly.

But then, still she could stand upright and find me. Her neck crooked, looking onward through the East, the gristly roots of rhubarb buried in her searching fingernails. She's threaded worse, and of course if I could just tell her- this is the kind of nursing which requires acute temperament and flexibility. I am thus on a journey to strike nonsense and fear from the idiotic vocabulary that put this nonsense in my head. Split through me like a butter knife into my apotropaic. Perhaps tar water could cure my ails. If not, certainly a sliver of vanilla would set me straight. Or if could just rain rain rain all day, then I'd make do without, but she is at school. My pistons are racked and nervous, and I'm not going anywhere but my rucksack stoop. I am camped in midwestern Spring soup. Fog, rain, and shade. The nightmare of day.
Inspired by William Butler Yeats 'Beautiful Lofty Things'
Mekael Shane Jan 2014
In my mind, I raced against time
I smoked peyote with the Apache
I chased Kangaroos
Through the bush with the Aborigine
All the while
...I searched for the power within me

In my mind, I outpaced time
I drew cave art with the Neanderthal
I climbed to the top of the mountain with the Sherpa
I hunted seal out on the frozen tundra with the Inuit
All the while
...I searched for the power within me

In my mind, I eclipsed time
I wrote poetry while under the tutelage of Langston Hughes
And I created visual greatness while apprentice to Gordon Parks
I even stood on the wall with Che' Guevara, like a Sentry standing watch
All the while
...I continued searching for the power within me

In my mind, I turned to face time
I wrote an addendum to the Emancipation Proclamation
And I saw the ugly truths
Of freedom's farcical Declaration
All the while
...I continued searching for the power within me

In my mind, I embraced time
I sought to free my nation from the pandemic perils of *******
And I prayed that we Americans would be free of
The snares of racial and economic divide that still has us chained
I did this while searching for truth, in this, our most tenuous hour
...then empyreally, God reached for me, touching me, and I finally found my power

* Reprinted from 'Exegesis a Decade of Poetry by Mekael'
© July 14, 2009 by Mekael Shane
Donall Dempsey Jun 2018
HE DO THAT TED HUGHES IN DIFFERENT VOICES

Nothing but
- a waste land.

Crow is bored

perched upon a branch
like a haiku

waiting to happen
but where

is a haiku
poet when

one really needs one.

Crows agree to play
Charades.

One falls to the forest floor
clutching its chest shouting

"Aghhhhh ya...got me
I'm  a gonner!"

Then another and another
with a more cornier

one-liner than
the one before

looking more like spilled ink
than the last.

Crows having a blast
laughing their feathers off.

All big Film
Noir fans.

"Yeah, yeah...I got it
a ****** of crows!"

Across a hillside
a human stands

as if he had just sprouted
out of the land.

An Easter Island
of a man.

The sneer of cold command
upon those chiseled lips.

An Ozymandias!
"Look upon my mighty words and despair!"

Or more like
a granite gryphon

glaring at the crows' play
turning them over in his mind

until they
become words.

"Oh not that ******
Ted Huges again!"

Crow mutters
to itself.

The poet unaware
that human thought

hangs frozen on the air
on such days as these.

The giant Hughes man
a poet made of iron

by some process of
emotional osmosis

absorbs their world and words
making it up as he goes along

for he great poet though he be
never learned to speak Crow.

The great man glares
at the sun

willing it into submission
the sun falters on a hillside.

He disappears into the snow
his fragile footprints

vanishing in a trice
lost to time

as if he has
never been born.

Crow does his best
impression

mocks and mimics
the human's thought.

"Nailing Heaven and earth together -

So man cried, but with God's voice.
And God bled, but with man's blood. "

A bell breaks
the sky's silence

crows scatter to
the heavens.

"Oh that Charlie
Crow...he is a one!"

One crow smirks to another.

"He do that Ted Hughes
to a tee!"
T.S. Eliot’s 1922 masterpiece “The Waste Land” was originally titled “He Do the Police in Different Voices,” a quote from Charles Dickens’ Our Mutual Friend.

I went to see Ted Hughes at the Royal Festival Hall after an extensive day and night shiftwork in mental health for about four days as staff went sick or simply didn't turn up.. Couldn't remember if I was to meet my ******* Thursday in Friday street or not or wot. I was right under his lectern and he looked immense  and a lot like Sam the Eagle in the Muppet Show in looks and manner. I kept falling asleep between syllables and would **** myself awake and every time I did so I would get that fierce Hughesian glare!
Forgotten Dreams Dec 2014
It's so easy to forget,                                            Then suddenly... gone
Let thoughts just slip away...                      a      I agree though,
Let them fade into non-existence.                   w      It's sad
Or at least that's how people play it.            a                  Sad how easy it is
Honestly...                                                   ­                        To pretend to
If you try to forget something,                            t        care
The more it just sticks with you.       a                                  love
Anything you want to remember...              o            dream
Well, that just seems to slowly f            l                                     forget


But that's all life really is, isn't it?
                                                             ­                       One big old **pretence
Dear Blank Challenge 2014. Written for Mikayla Hughes in response to her wonderful poems (check them out they're great)
Anwar Francis Oct 2015
I know what happens to a dream deferred.
Rather than dry up
or ooze like a festering sore
it yellows, then browns
then falls slowly to the ground
like leaves in the cold.

Dreams deferred do not smell
of rotten meat, or a syrupy sweet
but of cherry blossoms
and people hurrying down the street
sharing silence or words
with unnoted glances in between.

A dream deferred does not sag
like a heavy load
or even explode.
Instead it spreads
like moonlight.
It takes hold
and does not let go.
A poem inspired by langston hughes and his poem Harlem, and by my own personal experiences.
Savio Mar 2013
Crows of brooklyn
payphone goddess
Shakespeare:
old skinny
repeating thin silver words
beneath a sea shell
stolen by a 7 year old girl
in a red rag dress
from the burning contemporary
bookstore
tossing sweat thru
irrelevant back spine tunnel streets
featherless skulls
spitting sour chinese gin
from chimney blow hole
of their decaying dead thieving Fox
revolting death
to mother blessing decay
red blue green white
Fox yellow brown fur
swirling entwined like
melting crayons
on a stone militia crafted bench
researched developed by young Hispanic America Freedom wanderers
too hot
too cold to undress and ****
swirling together like cigar french ashes with
tongue hued wine
feverish coffee
thick as the bulging pregnant belly mother
giving
taking birth to a child
tossed carelessly into the Great Lakes
sipping on bad spoiled milk
digesting salt
hard boiled swan eggs
eating purity
chewing skunk
coughing industrial chemical gasoline
******* AIDS NYC bright non-existent lights
non-existent Allah
howling North Korea Communist war hymns
sing great religious protest
gunky toe nail'd feet
waltzing in the stomach of medieval
ballrooms chandelier not casted by
infinite diamonds
but by Jewish slaves
Islamic skins
Christian leather
Catholic molested brains children bones
deceased Langston Hughes
hung by Hughes spine and pupil
the size of texas
mass of the ****** female lips and knees
wearing color blind dress
shoes unfound
skin feet walking on rain drizzling beach
washed up skeleton sting ray
the skin unwrapped
like a christmas gift
Santa is starvation
licking the shoe polished long toes
of Death
riding the Downtown artificial lights
artificial scientist crafted classical
elevator time consuming Death songs

Jesus,
waking up,
to his body dry,
like that of Winter's rose and lips.
Maggie Emmett Nov 2016
I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

Tomorrow,
I’ll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody’ll dare
Say to me,
“Eat in the kitchen,"
Then.

Besides,
They’ll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed—

I, too, am America.
For all Americans to consider today!
From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes, published by Knopf and Vintage Books. Copyright © 1994 by the Estate of Langston Hughes.
I must report the passing of a dear old friend today
I'm not sure when it happened, but I felt I had to say
That the Vegas that's in movies, books, and on TV
Is not the one that you will find, it's not the one you'll see
I know your expectations are of glitter and of lights
Of singers in the lounges that play into the night
The lounges now are empty of the singers and the bands
Instead they're full of djs, and bad magicians badly tanned,
The song that was Las Vegas is not one thats in your head
The one you know with Elvis, is now gone, you see it's dead
The old hotels are gone now, It's not like it was before
The new buzzword in Vegas is now just, MORE, MORE, MORE
It's now a culture aimed at being bigger than the rest
For now it seems that bigger, means you're now known as the best
There's hotels full of bedbugs and the service is the *****
But, the casino doesn't care if there are people in the pits
The strip is nearly two miles long, and almost half is blank
It's like the desert opened up and ten casinos sank
At one end is the Stratosphere, it's got a real cool view
But, because of it's location it's not easy to get to
The Sahara was next closest, but now the Lady's gone
And to walk from this tram stop at night, well I cannot say it's fun
It's dingy and it's ***** and it's not a place to be
I wouldn't recommend this part, it's not a place to see
Freemont Street, The Old Vegas is off the beaten path
It's an hour ride upon the bus, and a taxi...do the math
It's just a place to go to once, there's no reason to return
And if you ever visit here, I think that's what you'll learn
The middle part of the strip is glitzy and spread out
It's kind of close to what Las Vegas is about
It's not all geared to people who have childeren all in tow
These ultra cool casinos is where you might just want to go
The other end is busy, but it's full of gloom and doom
And on every single corner, you can get girls to your room
There's people handing out small cards with women with a price
Who'll come up to your room and well....let's say they don't play dice
On every bridge across the strip, there's beggars and there's hawkers
They're selling everything from cds to bottled dollar water
It's tourist town, a fast food mess, it's Disneyland on crack
There's lots of things to do down here, but you must always watch your back
Did The Mirage **** it?, when Steve Wynn said let's go really huge
Hotels like this were ten times larger than the Moulin Rouge
It wasn't when Hughes came to town and bought the Desert Inn
You know the land that's now the new home of the casino known as Wynn?
It didn't die when Elvis left, it sill was full of life
But at someime since the town has died, it has fallen on the knife
The strip itself is two miles long, but you know that that's not all
In the years since Elvis left, it's become a big strip mall
There's stores here selling plastic , and the people shop in streams
I'm not sure, but to me NIKE is not the Vegas in my dreams
Rolling in their graves, I bet the stars who made this town
Are sitting in heaven or hell, saying when did it go down
There's more shows now of tribute acts and hypnotists galore
And you can find a Circus from Quebec through nearly every hotel door
At some point rigor mortis set into this old girl
I wish they could revive her, at least give it a whirl
There's buffets selling fried foods, obesity....my lord
And if you don't go out to Denny's, the restaurants you can't afford
My mind has got an image of Vegas that is cool
It involves going out late and spending daytime at the pool
You dress to go to dinner, maybe dancing and a show
And the concierge at the hotel is someone you should know
But now, you go out shopping to the outlet in the day
The casinos are all empty, since there's no one left to play
Getting dressed to go to dinner, means you switch from shorts to jeans
And the ways some people act now, well it's borders on obscene.
So, today I'd like to ask you all, for you may know more than I
But, can anybody tell me, just when did Vegas die?
Read Shakespeare and Milton and all of the rest
Keats, Coleridge and Wordsworth are some of the best
Read Ted Hughes and Sylvia, Motion, Duffy
They say what I want to say better than me

Read Homer and Ovid, Basho and Su ****
Chaucer and Boccaccio they've stood the test
Read Donne, Spenser, Marlowe, Jonson and Raleigh
Read Shakespeare and Milton and all of the rest

Read Swift, Pope, Blake, Tennyson, and Rossetti
The two Barrett Brownings are of interest
For feelings romantic as true as can be
Keats, Coleridge and Wordsworth are some of the best

Read Larkin and Betjeman if you're depressed
Read Wendy Cope to enjoy all of life's zest
Yes please don't think I despise modernity
Read Ted Hughes and Sylvia, Motion, Duffy

And how about all those I haven't addressed
Yeats, Auden, Joyce, Longfellow, Poe and Shelley
And all of the others I'm bound to have missed
They say what I want to say better than me

But what of the poet, with poets obessed?
In prose I am prolix, in speech stuttery:
So where will you find my emotions expressed?
On MySpace, on Twitter, read my poetry
It says what I want to say
The Dedpoet Dec 2015
I am Mexican:
       Brown and forgotten inbetween,
       Brown like the dirt poor I am.

Iv'e been in hard labor:
      I do what "they" don't want to anymore,
      I am the backbone of the working class.

Iv'e been poor:
      I see no handouts under the pyramid scheme,
      I am the Latin prince of the ghetto.

Iv'e been a hustler:
      Every penny earned off my back
      Makes dollars for "their" pockets.

Iv'e been here:
      I am no *******,
      I am the American dream,
      Still I must show identification.

I am Mexican:
      Brown and four generations deep
      American, I am still
      The immigrant face.
Langston Hughes 1902-1967
that is the welsh spelling, guess the english

is hughes shop, where they have many items

of use, substance, for some an entertainment.

various style pins, in various size boxes, folded

cotton handkerchieves, with a separate room

for night and underwear, where the lady will

serve the ladies.

she feels the cod, and he wears winter mittens.

windows are colour coordinated, the clothes

link arms, bed socks abound. fluffy.

this is a most useful place, where one can

buy traditional, hire hats for splendid weddings,

hats will last, with  the marriage, time

will tell.

not visited, please do, it is next to  roberts,

the coffee shop.

both splendid premises. dolgellau.

sbm.
Nigel Morgan Jul 2013
It was their first time, their first time ever. Of course neither would admit to it, and neither knew, about the other that is, that they had never done this before. Life had sheltered them, and they had sheltered from life.

Their biographies put them in their sixties. Never mind the Guardian magazine proclaiming sixty to be the new fifty. Albert and Sally were resolutely sixty – ish. To be fair, neither looked their age, but then they had led such sheltered lives, hadn’t they. He had a mother, she had a father, and that pretty much wrapped it up. They had spent respective lives being their parents’ companions, then carers, and now, suddenly this. This intimacy, and it being their first time.

When their contemporaries were befriending and marrying and procreating, and home-making and care-giving and child-minding, and developing their first career, being forced to start a second, overseeing teenagers and suddenly being parents again, but grandparents this time – with evenings and some weekends allowed – Albert and Sally had spent their time writing. They wrote poetry in their respective spaces, at respective tables, in almost solitude, Sally against the onslaught of TV noise as her father became deaf. Albert had the refuge of his childhood bedroom and the table he’d studied at – O levels, A levels, a degree and a further degree, and a little later on that PhD. Poetry had been his friend, his constant companion, rarely fickle, always there when needed. If Albert met a nice-looking woman in the library and lost his heart to her, he would write verse to quench not so much desire of a physical nature, but a desire to meet and to know and to love, and to live the dream of being a published poet.

Oh Sally, such a treasure; a kind heart, a sweet nature, a lovely disposition. Confused at just seventeen when suddenly she seemed to mature, properly, when school friends had been through all that at thirteen. She was passed over, and then suddenly, her body became something she could hardly deal with, and shyness enveloped her because her mother would say such things . . . but, but she had her bookshelf, her grandfather’s, and his books (Keats and Wordsworth saved from the skip) and then her books. Ted Hughes, Dylan Thomas (oh to have been Kaitlin, so wild and free and uninhibited and whose mother didn’t care), Stevie Smith, U.E. Fanthorpe, and then, having taken her OU degree, the lure of the small presses and the feminist canon, the subversive and the down-right weird.

Albert and Sally knew the comfort of settling ageing parents for the night and opening (and firmly closing) the respective doors of their own rooms, in Albert’s case his bedroom, with Sally, a box room in which her mother had once kept her sewing machine. Sally resolutely did not sew, nor did she knit. She wrote, constantly, in notebook after notebook, in old diaries, on discarded paper from the office of the charity she worked for. Always in conversation with herself as she moulded the poem, draft after draft after draft. And then? She went once to writers’ workshop at the local library, but never again. Who were these strange people who wrote only about themselves? Confessional poets. And she? Did she never write about herself? Well, occasionally, out of frustration sometimes, to remind herself she was a woman, who had not married, had not borne children, had only her father’s friends (who tried to force their unmarried sons on her). She did write a long sequence of poems (in bouts-rimés) about the man she imagined she would meet one day and how life might be, and of course would never be. No, Sally, mostly wrote about things, the mystery and beauty and wonder of things you could touch, see or hear, not imagine or feel for. She wrote about poppies in a field, penguins in a painting (Birmingham Art Gallery), the seashore (one glorious week in North Norfolk twenty years ago – and she could still close her eyes and be there on Holkham beach).  Publication? Her first collection went the rounds and was returned, or not, as is the wont of publishers. There was one comment: keep writing. She had kept writing.

Tide Marks

The sea had given its all to the land
and retreated to a far distant curve.
I stand where the waves once broke.

Only the marks remain of its coming,
its going. The underlying sand at my feet
is a desert of dunes seen from the air.

Beyond the wet strand lies, a vast mirror
to a sky laundered full of haze, full of blue,
rinsed distances and shining clouds.


When Albert entered his bedroom he drew the curtains, even on a summer’s evening when still light. He turned on his CD player choosing Mozart, or Bach, sometimes Debussy. Those three masters of the piano were his favoured companions in the act of writing. He would and did listen to other music, but he had to listen with attention, not have music ‘on’ as a background. That Mozart Rondo in A minor K511, usually the first piece he would listen to, was a recording of Andras Schiff from a concert at the Edinburgh Festival. You could hear the atmosphere of a capacity audience, such a quietness that the music seemed to feed and enter and then surround and become wondrous.

He’d had a history teacher in his VI form years who allowed him the run of his LP collection. It had been revelation after revelation, and that had been when the poetry began. They had listened to Tristan & Isolde into the early hours. It was late June, A levels over, a small celebration with Wagner, a bottle of champagne and a bowl of cherries. As the final disc ended they had sat in silence for – he could not remember how long, only from his deeply comfortable chair he had watched the sky turn and turn lighter over the tall pine trees outside. And then, his dear teacher, his one true friend, a young man only a few years out of Cambridge, rose and went to his record collection and chose The Third Symphony by Vaughan-Williams, his Pastoral Symphony, his farewell to those fallen in the Great War  – so many friends and music-makers. As the second movement began Albert wept, and left abruptly, without the thanks his teacher deserved. He went home, to the fury of his father who imagined Albert had been propositioned and assaulted by his kind teacher – and would personally see to it that he would never teach again. Albert was so shocked at this declaration he barely ever spoke to his father again. By eight o’clock that June morning he was a poet.

For Ralph

A sea voyage in the arms of Iseult
and now the bowl of cherries
is empty and the Perrier Jouet
just a stain on the glass.

Dawn is a mottled sky
resting above the dark pines.
Late June and roses glimmer
in a deep sea of green.

In the still near darkness,
and with the volume low,
we listen to an afterword:
a Pastoral Symphony for the fallen.

From its opening I know I belong
to this music and it belongs to me.
Wholly. It whelms me over
and my face is wet with tears.


There is so much to a name, Sally thought, Albert, a name from the Victorian era. In the 1950s whoever named their first born Albert? Now Sally, that was very fifties, comfortably post-war. It was a bright and breezy, summer holiday kind of name. Saying it made you smile (try it). But Light-foot (with a hyphen) she could do without, and had hoped to be without it one day. She was not light-footed despite being slim and well proportioned. Her feet were too big and she did not move gracefully. Clothes had always been such a nuisance; an indicator of uncertainty, of indecision. Clothes said who you were, and she was? a tallish woman who hid her still firm shape and good legs in loose tops and not quite right linen trousers (from M & S). Hair? Still a colour, not yet grey, she was a shale blond with grey eyes. She had felt Albert’s ‘look’ when they met in The Barton, when they had been gathered together like show dogs by the wonderful, bubbly (I know exactly what to wear – and say) Annabel. They had arrived at Totnes by the same train and had not given each other a second glance on the platform. Too apprehensive, scared really, of what was to come. But now, like show dogs, they looked each other over.

‘This is an experiment for us,’ said the festival director, ‘New voices, but from a generation so seldom represented here as ‘emerging’, don’t you think?’

You mean, thought Albert, it’s all a bit quaint this being published and winning prizes for the first time – in your sixties. Sally was somewhere else altogether, wondering if she really could bring off the vocal character of a Palestinian woman she was to give voice to in her poem about Ramallah.

Incredibly, Albert or Sally had never read their poems to an audience, and here they were, about to enter Dartington’s Great Hall, with its banners and vast fireplace, to read their work to ‘a capacity audience’ (according to Annabel – all the tickets went weeks ago). What were Carcanet thinking about asking them to be ‘visible’ at this seriously serious event? Annabel parroted on and on about who’d stood on this stage before them in previous years, and there was such interest in their work, both winning prizes The Forward and The Eliot. Yet these fledgling authors had remained stoically silent as approaches from literary journalists took them almost daily by surprise. Wanting to know their backstory. Why so long a wait for recognition? Neither had sought it. Neither had wanted it. Or rather they’d stopped hoping for it until . . . well that was a story all of its own, and not to be told here.

Curiosity had beckoned both of them to read each other’s work. Sally remembered Taking Heart arriving in its Amazon envelope. She brought it to her writing desk and carefully opened it.  On the back cover it said Albert Loosestrife is a lecturer in History at the University of Northumberland. Inside, there was a life, and Sally had learnt to read between the lines. Albert had seen Sally’s slim volume Surface and Depth in Blackwell’s. It seemed so slight, the poems so short, but when he got on the Metro to Whitesands Bay and opened the bag he read and became mesmerised.  Instead of going home he had walked down to the front, to his favourite bench with the lighthouse on his left and read it through, twice.

Standing in the dark hallway ready to be summoned to read Albert took out his running order from his jacket pocket, flawlessly typed on his Elite portable typewriter (a 21st birthday present from his mother). He saw the titles and wondered if his voice could give voice to these intensely personal poems: the horror of his mother’s illness and demise, his loneliness, his fear of being gay, the nastiness and bullying experienced in his minor university post, his observations of acquaintances and complete strangers, train rides to distant cities to ‘gather’ material, visit to galleries and museums, homages to authors, artists and composers he loved. His voice echoed in his head. Could he manage the microphone? Would the after-reading discussion be bearable? He looked at Sally thinking for a moment he could not be in better company. Her very name cheered him. Somehow names could do that. He imagined her walking on a beach with him, in conversation. Yes, he’d like that, and right now. He reckoned they might have much to share with each other, after they’d discussed poetry of course. He felt a warm glow and smiled his best smile as she in astonishing synchronicity smiled at him. The door opened and applause beckoned.
King Panda Mar 2018
spring’s breath hums on your face
sits upon a fencepost, hawk-like and stoic

its infant rays nuzzle, organized and coded
its beauty, slightly bothersome
to the man who mistook god’s warmth as permanent

all planets in space operate between two foci
and ted hughes wrote “crow” as a bedtime story
for the lovers he abandoned  

what I’m trying to say is this:
spring will leave earth
like a two-faced lover
but never forget the monday you shared with her
as she breathed winter’s hangover
down your holy throat

for that is something memorable
The victim list keeps growing

But no one really cares

The gristmill claims another one

Keep your hands in and don't stare

Hollywood is the golden land

The eternal silver screen

But many souls are lost here

A lot of greats or never beens

Child stars and veterans

The names can fill a book

Look, we've lost another one

Keep on moving, no time to look

We show concern when tales we hear

Of celebs dying young

We ruminate on films not made

And songs they've never sung

Each busload brings another group

To fill the starstruck void

And the next bus has a dozen more

With dreams, too soon destroyed

It's been this way since film began

The streets are filled with scores

Of undiscovered junkies,

And photogenic ******.

Some you know and some you don't

It's a list a mile long

It's amazing how these fragile folks

Could end up going wrong

The studios were pimps back then

With bennies all the rage

They loaded up their bonus babes

And then they sent them out on stage

We've seen the Little Rascals

You know Alfalfa Switzer, but,

Did you know he died a ******

From a bullet to his gut?

Scandals, lawsuits, hidden trysts

These stars were fully amped

Girls below the legal age,

Made Chaplins ***** a *****

Arbuckle committed ******

Other's just od'd

It's amazing how the failures

Make for a better read

Oh look another bus trip

Past the houses of the stars

All manicured and landscaped lawns

Just to hide the ****** scars

If you look behind the curtain

Back into the world of Oz

You'll find the munchkins getting plastered

And dear Judy dead because

They made her a screen idol

They broke down the girl inside

They milked her for her talent

****, they took her for a ride,

For every one like Garland

There's a thousand more in line

Just waiting for their chance to see

Their name upon that sign

Keep together, Keep on moving

There's lot's more for you to see

River Phoenix from an overdose

John Belsushi killed by speed

Peg Entwhistle jumped from high atop

The Hollywood sign we see

She decided she had had enough

In either 32 or 33.

Hughes bough loads of starlets

He liked to hide them round the town

But he was always way too busy

Getting up or coming down

James Dean died in a car crash

Add his name unto the glut

And there was young Grace Kelly

It seems our Princess was a ****

Jean Harlows husband shot himself

Clara Bow liked  having fun

In fact she ******* the USC football team

And I think she might have won

Look up and see the smiles

Of the ones who reached their dream

But, many do not go unscathed

In Space they can't hear you scream!

Sal Mineo was murdered,

Then there's dear dear Natalie Wood

They're not saying  RJ done it,

But it sure does not look good

Remember the curly headed kid

Who played Buffy on tv

She ended up so full of drugs

It's a list from A to Z

Now, when stars have problems

they do reheab and they hide

Back then they never had the chance

They just committed suicide

The man of steel, George Reeves

Was found shot in the head

They're not sure who killed Superman

So they said suicide instead,

Bob Crane, our Colonel Hogan

Made **** films and did drugs

But, whle Hogan's Heroes was still on

This was swept under the rugs

We can keep on this forever

Listing failures more than gains

For to be a fallen idol

comes with alot of pain

Child stars, just brushed aside

Their names and faces lost

Their lives are but a footnote

Is their loss the final cost?

You can peek behind the curtain

The wizard's still there today

But, if you come to visit

Please don't make the choice to stay

For, the victim list keeps growing

It gets longer every year

But, for many of these fallen stars

Is there one who'll shed a tear?

It's an image on a silver screen

We love the work they do

But of each ten thousand who do try

There's only one who's dream comes true

So, watch and listen closely

For in Hollywood you'll find

A list of tragic stories

Who the movies left behind.
Stacy Mills Dec 2016
For you are so far away but your words are dear
You may be far away but your kindness is clear
You've touched my hardend heart with a feather like sonnet
Left a trail of smiles upon it
For this I thank you my friend
I hope your kindness never falters, true to the end.
Sia Jane Jan 2014
On the first day, he was pushed
robust in his stance, the other forced,
this boy down the spiral staircase
of the Catholic church, the school
had renovated, the Spring before
Isaac had begun his studies,
at the high school.

Ballet was his passion, Latin was the
language that so effortlessly, fluently
was spoken from his lips in class
as he smiled at his Professor, another
victory accomplished in academia
so proud were his parents, of their
blue eyed boy.

Jonah was the reject, the older brother
he had been kicked out of school,
not once, but twice, and was often
found with a joint, his unshaven face
wrapped around one of the girls,
from the all girls school that ran
alongside Isaacs all boys.

Issac was hurt, a further blow to his
stomach, rendered him broken
as a waterfall of tears ran down his
bruised and cut face, so ashamed
as other pupils laughed, staring, pointing
until the final bell rang as they fled from
the high ceilings and narrow corridors.

Wrapped in a ball, he waited for all
halls and students to clear, and as
he rolled over, picking himself up
he took to the washroom, knowing he
needed to be presentable for his mother
waiting for him at the school gate
brimming with pride, at her boys scholarship.

All his dreams, mystical and serene, Romeo and Juliet
fluid streams of poetry of Elliot, Poe, Hughes
and of course Wilde and those love letters of Beethoven
math, biology, all paled into insignificance
he was born a writer, a dancer, a drawer,
sketching and typing his heart to a page,
prose a future love would read.

Johan saw his mother's car pull up
as he raced and giggled with Saskia
leading her astray, he promised her all
the things those boys always did, and of course
not to break her sweet sixteen heart, unlike other boys
as his mother smoked another Camel, the two lovers
jumped into his truck, Johnny Cash blaring from speakers
laughing hysterically, the world at their feet.

By 4pm, Isaac was ready to leave school,
tentatively walking out the main door, down
concrete slabs as steps, no predators in sight
he couldn't hide the dark circles under his eyes
that formed as bruises, knowing he was fortunate
to have not been damaged further
by the haunting before last period.

Walking to the gates, he listened through
headphones; Tchaikovsky
his release
his home
his saving grace.

© Sia Jane
moziq Aug 2017
Dance in the flowers of springtime like a flower without petals.

I have never heard of such.

Never heard of a flower without petals, a lion without a roar, a tree without bark.

These things are simply unheard of like sacred souls.

They never see these things or the stitches on your heart holding you together, never heard of a heart that doesn't love.

Never heard of a tiger without stripes and the pride of them , for what would we know if not these things?

What about Maya Angelou who told us of the caged bird that sings or Langston Hughes who taught us to take our dreams, spread our wings and fly with them?

A flame without heat is not so, it is ignited like the rage flowing through our veins when yet another African American boy is faced down,
on the ground,
unarmed,
with blood of his own flowing out of him.

Never heard of is it?

Just like the streets that would scream if they could speak, so would Andy Lopez if wasn't already six feet under just for being 13.

These are the things that are not unheard of, we just never hear them.

I think maybe it is time these things be recognized and not cast aside, so that maybe their is hope for a bright future.

That we might never have to see a world where flowers have no petals and lions no roar.

But finally at peace with no war.
Just love.
I wrote this so long ago but I still love it an I hope you do to.
Mateuš Conrad Mar 2016
i only started collecting a library, because, would you believe it, my local library was a pauper in rags and tatters; apologies for omitting necessary diacritic marks, the whiskey was ******* on icecubes to a shrivel.*

ernest hemingway, e.m. forster, mary shelley,
aesop, r. l. stevenson, jean-paul sartre,
jack kerouac, sylvia plath, evelyn waugh,
chekhov, cortazar, freud, virginia woolf,
philip k. ****, dostoyevsky, aleksandr solzhenitsyn,
oscar wilde, malcolm x, kafka, nabokov,
bukowski, sacher-masoch, thomas a kempis,
yevgeny zamyatin, alexandre dumas,
will self, j. r. r. tolkien, richard b. bentall,
james joyce, william burroughs, truman capote,
herman hesse, thomas mann, j. d. salinger,
nikos kazantzakis, george orwell,
philip roth, joseph roth, bulgakov, huxley,
marquis de sade, john milton, samuel beckett,
huysmans, michel de montaigne, walter benjamin,
sienkiewicz, rilke, lipton, harold norse,
alfred jarry, miguel de cervantes, von krafft-ebing,
kierkegaard, julian jaynes, bynum porter & shephred,
r. d. laing, c. g. jung, spinoza, hegel, kant, artistotle,
plato, josephus, korner, la rochefoucauld, stendhal,
nietzsche, bertrand russell, irwin edman,
faucault, anwicenna, descartes, voltaire, rousseau,
popper,  heidegger, tatarkiewicz, kolakowski,
seneca, cycero, milan kundera, g. j. warnock,
stefan zweig, the pre-socratics, julian tuwim,
ezra pound, gregory corso, ted hughes,
guiseppe gioacchino belli, dante, peshwari women,
e. e. cummings, ginsberg, will alexander, max jacob,
schwob, william blake, comte de lautreamont,
jack spicer, zbigniew herbert, frank o'hara,
richard brautigan, miroslav holub, al purdy,
tzara, ted berrigan, fady joudah, nikolai leskov,
anna kavan, jean genet, albert camus, gunter grass,
susan hill, katherine dunn, gil scott-heron,
kleist, irvine welsh, clarice lispector, hunter thompson,
machado de assisi, reymont, tolstoy, jim bradbury,
norman davies, shakespeare, balzac, dickens,
jasienica, mary fulbrook, stuart t. miller,
walter la feber, jan wimmer, terry jones & alan ereira,
kenneth clark, edward robinson, heinrich harrer,
gombrowicz, a. krawczuk, andrzej stasiuk, ivan bunin,
joseph heller, goethe, mcmurry, atkins & de paula,
bernard shaw, horace, ovid, virgil, aeschyles,
rumi, omar khayyam, humbert wolfe, e. h. bickersteth,
asnyk, witkacy, mickiewicz, slowacki, lesmian,
lechon, lep szarzynski, victor alexandrov, gogol,
william styron, krasznahorkai, robert graves,
defoe, tim burton, antoine de saint-exupery,
christiane f., salman rushdie, hazlitt, marcus aurelius,
nick hornby, emily bronte, walt whitman,
aryeh kaplan, rolf g. renner, j. p. hodin, tim hilton... etc.
Nigel Morgan Jan 2013
(after a watercolour by Mary Fedden OBE RA)
 
It is early morning, a Tuesday in June. It is May’s birthday. She likes to get up early on her birthday and join her husband on the beach. He has been up since five, fiddling about, making tea, reading a little, avoiding his desk. May thinks, when she watches him dress with a half an eye open feigning sleep, he looks so distinguished with his silver, nearly white hair and that beard (her suggestion). And today I am forty-five and he is . . . old enough to be my father. But he is my companion, my love, my watcher who stalks me still with his gaze of admiration, which I never tire of when we are alone, but I am sometimes embarrassed by when we are in company. He knows this, but he can’t help himself. He says he loves to watch me cross a room, stand still against a window, reach for a vase on a shelf, sit at my work table, intent.
 
May sees him far down the beach as she walks with purpose through the dunes that separate their cottage from the beach. Her short boots glisten with the heavy dew. She has pulled on her work dress over her striped nightshirt, a dress she wove in a grey Jura their first long winter. There he is in his stupid cap his grandson gave him when he acquired the boat. He’s carrying a fishing net to collect creatures from the rock pools further down the beach. She remembers when this ‘interest’ began. He had read to her one night a long extract from *Father and Son
by Edmund Gosse. It was a kind of threnody to a state that once existed, a veritable Garden of Eden, destroyed in two generations by a mid-Victorian passion for sea-shore collecting. ‘These rock-basins’ Gosse had written, ’fringed by corallines, filled with still water almost as pellucid as the upper air itself, thronged with beautiful sensitive forms of life, - they exist no longer, they are all profaned, and emptied and vulgarized. The fairy paradise has been violated, the exquisite product of the centuries of natural selection has been crushed under the rough paw of well-meaning curiosity.'
 
She loved to hear him read, knowing that he loved to read to her. The joy on his face sometimes; it was worth enduring all the strange things he found to read (she fell asleep so often as he read) just for those occasions when she felt pinned to her seat, grappled to her bed like Gulliver, wishing it would never stop, such words, his dear voice. How long had it been now?
 
He didn’t walk to meet her. He let her walk to him. He stood there waiting. When she drew close he stretched out his arms and arranged her body in front of him, walked back a little and smiled his admiring smile. There were almost tears in his eyes, as there so often were when he had no words. She knew on his desk there would be a poem, and like the poet Ted Hughes (who neither of them could deal with), a birthday letter waiting to be given to her at breakfast, with gifts she knew he had worried over.
 
She stood quite still and let the fresh September wind gather her now quite long hair and turning away from him, let it stream behind her. He had turned too, realising in saying nothing he had said too much. He remembered another birthday on a different shore, a day when she had surrounded him, captured him, loved him with a passion that had now tempered, was the stuff of his writing that now had found its way into a 100 Love Poems to Read before you Die. He had long since refused to speak these out loud, refused to be visible anymore, would not be interviewed; it was now the novel, the long, long journey of a novel, the months, years even (In Praise of Rust took three agonising years).
 
And now, standing in this sun-glinting bay, ignoring the lighthouse, May thought of Mrs Ramsey and that summer party on Skye, those earnest young men, those artistic young women, and her commanding husband who would not look at the lighthouse, who would not countenance a visit.
 
Her husband, strange to think this because she never felt herself his wife, never commanded anything. He made decisions, and then laid things gently aside. It was enough for him to have been decisive. What she did with that was up to her. He wanted her to be free, always free from any command. When they married, to him it was like the silent grace they ‘said’ at each meal. She knew it had meant so much to him: the silence of that moment. He had read to her the morning of their marriage a text from William Penn – she had remembered one phrase  ‘Between a man and his wife nothing ought to rule but love . . .’ And he yet had never commanded her. He seemed to admire her being her own self. She was not his. They were the dearest friends, weren’t they? He expected nothing from her (he had said this so often), no commitment, no promise; just gentleness, a peaceful nature, an understanding that he loved her with a passion she would never understand because she knew he did not understand it himself.
Kewayne Wadley Jan 2019
Put me to sleep
I says put me back to sleep
and lock the door


I got some place to be
Got someones to see.


You can't understand
You surely can't understand


I needs to dream my same dream
I needs to dream my same dream I says


This old life does me no good
My eyes, they need to be closed I says.


Finds me a woman I met sometime last night


No madder how I tell it,
You can't understand this thang I know fo' certain.


I says put me back to sleep
I says put me back to sleep
Can't you see
I got some place to be
Got someones to see

— The End —