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ThePoet Oct 2015
I would dry your eyes if it
meant drowning in your tears

I would calm your demons if it
meant falling with your fears

I would fight your struggles if it
meant suffering your strife

I would trade your death if it
meant giving you my life
Vicki Kralapp Aug 2013
Blown by a warm south wind, I sail off to sea,
that's the path it seems that life has had for me.
Adventure whispers in my ear and calls me out it seems,
and gathers me along with all my hopes and dreams.

I dream of all the trips I'll take when life is simpler still,
and I wait to walk on beaches until I have had my fill.
I gaze into the eyes of my true love who stands here by my side,
as I watch for the rising of the sun and of the morning tide.  

I hold on to the hand of this true miracle of men,
and I'll keep him in this heart of mine until the very end.
The man I speak of truly was a gift from up above,
and I cannot live without him or without his gift of love.

He came to me a stranger, then became a steadfast friend
and led me from my misery and helped my heart to mend.
He guided me with his hand to be the woman I am now
and helped me to the place that started with a vow.

Now as the trade winds ******* I cannot help but think,
of the beauty by my side and the love that doesn't sink.
When adventure calls to me and whispers in my ear,
I cannot help but hold your hand and pray that you'll be here.
All poems are copy written and soul property of Vicki Kralapp.
cher Dec 2018
day through night, i face the same fate
my flesh inches closer to its expiry date.

a hell:
my mind is at its limit,
and my body; no longer mine.

each minute goes by, i pray to gods,
every holy name, those i've never heard of,
pray, pray with all my might -
choose a different girl to feast on tonight.

my face was stolen from a world of debris
to support a family i'll never again see
i sold myself, let me be bought,
for just two coins, a price of naught.

a customer.
i tell myself,
don't open your eyes,
don't move a muscle.

hands on my thighs - deja vu
my body to her is just revenue.

memories of every night still live within my body - a bookmark telling me i'll never be my own. a constant image of flesh flickers behind my eyelids every time i close my eyes.

give me my body back.
i'm working on my gcse drama devised piece and it's being recorded in two days - ours is on slavery and i got the *** trade as my scene. we gotta write monologues, so i decided to write mine as a poem because of course i did.
CK Baker Jan 2017
Thank you ~
for a life not to trade
blessings, in spades
tight spaces
behind laundry doors
packed closets
and open drawers
gator tails, tarnished brass
cracks in kitchen sliding glass
wet towels, withering plants
foundation filled
with carpenter ants
buckets piled with
shoes and tags
village clothes
and saddlebags
peeling paint
and broken walls
****** seats
in bathroom stalls
clogged pantry
frigid rooms
table scribe
and carbon fumes
comfort capsules
empty tanks
broken limbs
from children’s pranks
**** finger
double tongue
long goodbyes
and sidewalk dung
cluster flies
chavie’ clique
accompanying
the hypocrite
cracked back
and hidden smiles
chalk on board
with mr miles
atomic wedgies
closing doors
wrotten eggs
and open sores
jaw jack
nasty folk
dinner calls
for pig in poke
penny pinchers
double dip
yellow mouth
and silver tip
brown nosers
thick red tape
paper cuts
and pimple nape
gallivants
so out of norm
the joy of life
in basic form
CK Baker Jan 2017
They brought them
from the hollar
to the barge
to the field ~
into the wallows
in prayer
skinny little pinkers
cropped by ivory gates
buzzed with hot wire
hooked on bug worm
whistling dixie
around scrummers
and **** pen

peckers squawk
down eden lane
(nipping at jean lint
and fraystring)
deep in the hollows
a mad crow
(with steady tap)
the snouts high
on grunters
and squealers
stomping past
the feather pack

folded fingers
on the gatekeeper
(an engineer by
trade they'd say)
pigtails and
slack line
down the dusty lane
a snap of the jawbone
and lawn chairs settle
(facing north)
the bold script
and chimes
uneasy
Hadiy Syakir Mar 2018
I want to open a business
but I will never trade
every words of sanctity
for it.

Teach me,
on how to open a shop
without a table
without a sign
without a premise
is it all done just
to break the promise?

I want to be like them
but I can't sell my words
on a tee, on a tele
becoming part of
the rotten machinery
is a sign of chaos
and profligacy.

even if I have to wait
at the end of the line
, I will do that.
T R S Jun 21
Scissors used to be a tool I'd ask my mom for
So I could clip comics from the paper

Sundays were colorful, and full of ads
and deals, and payments for the lives that we had.


Older.
Older and older I learned
that's lives aren't made out of food and water.
But paper and paper ideals.

I spilled on the floor
my heart bleeds on papers

and i bleed on it more and god how I hate her.
Mugerwa Muzamil Feb 2018
How it felt about when she smiled
Her roses were red wine
Teeth were an iceberg in a cold sea
I didn't know she knew me more than by name
I walked head up to her in a confident laze
She always willed to lay a hand in a steamy time

Whenever she called me by my pet name
I would light up a grin
How I couldn't help her spell
How much I belied of having a way out
The more she drew close, the more I sank in
How she made seduction a white collar trade
The lavish eyes, the lazy talk, the pure feminine mien

She pat on my shoulder and turned to catch a glance
Asked what made her hands a soft pleasure
Whispered that she was schooled in pottery and making dough
I couldn't stop but ask about the flawless curves
She pushed out her lips and said  I used to spin a ring at nine

I asked her out for a movie
She said tragedies make her cry
One day I went to look down through my office windowpane
My sight met hers taking down a secret gang
With a fierce nine millimeter gun
I was left speechless in awe

We needed to rethink our revolution
On her mission in Damascus a plane crashed
I still cried a pail.
This was inspired by a mysterious beautiful lady who used to help me out at work whenever I was clueless
CK Baker Mar 2017
the walls of inside passage
look the same
from sound to straight
tugs and plugs
dot the coastline
as the quartermaster rolls
giving time for evening glare  

pods are in sequence
as the high tail smashes
and jaws at the krill
white bellies and sea cows
bob and weave
as bow heads glide
over haida gwaii  

northern lights dance
and tlingit chant
as the tide settles softly
on savory shores
their getting hungry in hoonah
as the blue back and beating drums
mark the life blood of the sea  

driftwood nets
and sitka spruce
surround the cook house
ravens and tinhorns
man the scullery
kerosene lamps flicker
as clam shells roast
on open flames  

villagers stroll
on pebbled sand
in the harbor of souls
where ships set sail
on might and mass
into the steady winds
of the golden skies


ice fields (to the north)
of kryptonite blue
cutting hills at
a glacial pace
knuckle clouds
above the snowline
where warlocks
craft a hidden trade  

trappers, skinners
muscle shoals
grizzly feasts
in kodiak bowl
determined pilgrims
on a dead horse trail
in search of gold
the holy grail
To lessen liabilities,
to lower costs and
make the world more,
more productive; exacting...


To make everything easier,
a life more fulfilling...
...more predictable, perhaps,
more equal than now.


To eliminate sadness,
anger, depression, anxiety.
To work less at everything,
they will do it all for me.


The planet will be saved by the extirpation of human activity...

...for who needs humans to trade stock?
...who needs humans to make widgets?
...who needs humans to clean things?

Who needs humans at all?
I find it humorous to ponder the state of capitalism when A.I. becomes self aware and makes it's own decisions. Poor poor capitalist's will be crying Communism.
Daisy Marrow Sep 2013
The first time I saw you it was in math class.
I didn't notice anything about you at first I just memorized the back of how your head was.
After all, I had an hour to ****.
The second time I saw you were in English class.
You sat next to me but not by choice.
But I was happy about it.
It took me about four to five weeks to talk to you,
and I wasn't even the one to speak first.
You introduced yourself and then we worked together on an assignment.
It's been two weeks and I haven't said another word and I probably won't out of random.
My anxiety swallows me whole
and I'm sorry I can't even say hello.
But I have had time to notice you.
And let me just say
I'm in love with your taste in music
I'm in love with the way you hold your books
thinking that if you change the sound of your voice when the diagonal changes,
or if you struggle reading words you've never seen before and sit there for a few seconds trying to piece together what they mean.
I love how you can play the mandolin, you should show me sometime.
As I think about these things I also pick up how you would never even think of me.
I mean really,
you probably want some girl that's outgoing and can strum a guitar solo at midnight with you.
You probably want someone with long hair you can intertwine your fingers in,
or someone you can spend an afternoon together after church with.
I can't move mountains
and I can't even speak without looking like a fool,
but even if nothing will ever happen
It would be just as quite exciting being friends with you.
We could trade books and make each other mixtapes.
It hasn't even been a month yet and I'm already writing mediocre poetry about you.
I'm sorry about that by the way.
I'm not asking for a relationship but a friendship with someone like you would feel just the same.
I wrote this in like 20 minutes and I apologize I don't even know
2013
Chris Neilson Feb 2017
Stuck in a lift
with a body odoured racist
hearing their bigoted views
with no space to resist

Stuck on a desert island
with a hungry cannibal
with nothing left to lose
you're the nearest mammal

Stuck on a planet
with climate change deniers  
intent on ignoring science
confirmed political liars

Stuck between a Brexit and an EU
who knows with whom we'll trade
everyone blaming each other
we need a politician upgrade
Yes, let's just get on with it
Cné Nov 2017
Rise and shine, first thing in the morning walking past the mirror.
Avoiding its reflection, not wanting to see its reflective picture.
Kneeling in the shower, hands pressed tightly to her ribs.  
Who is this frightened child?  Does she even exist?  
She took a step back from the world, no one knew she was alive.  
Now she’s grasping at her life, just trying to survive.
A tainted childhood in shame now fragile bones from self abuse,
don’t blame her though, she was only a child confused.  
How did this happen?  When did this begin?  
She seemed so happy, or was that all pretend?  
She had started at 130, or so,
but felt as if she had lost control.
What happened to this dear sweet innocent child?  
Her idea of beauty and perfection had driven her wild.
Minus 25 later she was so close.  
Almost 100 without any clothes.  
No one would touch her, they thought she would break.  
She told herself she was content with that trade.
I was 18.
~
I’m much better now in my adult discipline
eating healthy 3 meals a day purely for consumption.  
Yesterday, I skipped dinner in lieu of drinking wine.
Today at noon, hovering over my breakfast, I resign
Some days I struggle. Some days I am not fine.
But ...
I will eat my breakfast, lunch and dinner.
And paint my pretty pictures.
This was a therapeutic write.
Michael H May 25
A fiery *****
She knows to trade
She wants to grow
Extreme havoc
Follows her wake
Beginning to suffuse
A relationship with honor
Sustainable fixings
An eternal gift
The purity of a partner,
With emotions
The wave of the divine
Heals
13
Egeria Litha Aug 2018
Hello, Waitress in the sky
So long her fear to fly
She throws the world a smile
bats her eyes in a wink she's gone
hurling through the clouds
calming others through turbulence
**** the corporate scene
Type A personalities acting mean
humiliating her in a board meeting
so she trades blue for green

Goodbye Waitress in the sky
trade her wings for a diamond ring
So long her need for speed
racing on the runway


She was flying with the birds but now
she's swimming with the fishes

Deflated dreams of broadening horizons
a-popped balloon and a rolling stone
nowhere to go but everywhere
Oh Lord, she won't get the answer tonight
Oh sky, give her the strength to fly
Oh Queen, find her a smart place to run
and that's why she took US 66 for a drive
we are sacred and scared just the same as ever
the passion and the rage never seems to dissipate
what shades and shadows shape our souls
the hourglass flowers towards never-ending spirals
humans are blessed with their own fragile memories
like spades and sparrows they dig holes and make nests in the sand
though we have escaped the trails and trellises of our transmutations
on trade-winds we still must sail to reach our destinations
Olives, figs, dates and mastic, wyrd or oracles, fates and magic, wars and loves and all that’s tragic.


A Father’s lust, an Uncle’s hate, a puzzling labyrinth, through the gate,

A Cretan born, another covered, a starry symbol, placed in the cupboard,

Special place, where heroes meet him, mindless creature, murderous ******,

South in winter, man below with a bull above, placed in the heavens by two father's love,

A strangeness here, the seat of trade, in forbidden tryst, a beast was made,

Man of blood, tortured soul, stalks the maze, that stalks the pole,

"Stranger still, this wild pattern, revolving Seventh, Circle of Saturn?"

Unholy corridors made of granites, trace out the movements of the planets!

Life of horror, a soul of pain, terrorizing, with no refrain,

Smells their fear, scents of sin, raging actions, threshing men;

“They call me Moloch! They call me Baal! Tear your body, festoon my hall!”

In trepidation, to gatekeeper sent, a ****** start, for your punishment;

“I collect the hearts, I eat the eyes, I eat the liver, before he dies!”

Olives, figs, dates and mastic, wyrd or oracles, fates and magic, life and death and all that’s tragic.
The Minotaur is the constellations of Orion with the "bull's head," or "bull at/as his head," -Taurus inside the, "labyrinth," created by drawing the lines of the celestial motions, planets and stars, inside a circle or spherical graph. The Bull is the Apis Sun God of Egypt and the Man is the Orion-Aryan symbol of the harvest in Sumer-Persia therefore Minos was the ruler who combined the two kingdoms into one. Most likely the second to do so since Narmer/****** was his father.

In Greek myth each myth contains three celestial items found in the heavens and they are combined in story as, "Heteroclitic," according to Plato meaning assigned by the author as the author sees fit to tell it. In short, the myth is put together by the teller in any way in which the storyteller wishes to convey it.
igc May 2015
I saw the best minds of my generation congested and
polluted overdosing on irrelevance

Abandoned abused replaced
Fed to the thought police
Corrected corrupted
Declining the potential to be heard in
exchange for the opportunity to be documented

Lives being lived according to unfeasible standards
You either make it or you don’t
there’s no in between
there’s no maybe
there’s no equal

Left to meander through the conceived thoughts of others
decisions being made
moves being made
eulogies being made

nothings real
nothing’s right
nothing’s honest
nothing thought up matters


Who in the safety of their homes were taught respect
are told to mask their emotions
Identities saved for the weak
Only to be showcased when conducive

Who pump iron into their veins
looking for an angry fix of acceptance
Sweat streams surge down their backs
Failure prominent in their thoughts
Motivation blessing their features
the Devil clever in disguise

Who see little white fields of fairy dust
a never ending landscape of courage
giving them superpowers beyond belief

Nothing beats the freedom of being told
You can fly

Who dream of equality behind closed eyes
But render to imposed birth rights when open
The upper hand implying more than height
and executing more force than necessary to move them

It’s all about the cause until you’re indubitably
the effect

Who tuck monsters into their beds
Forgetting to check closets for skeletons not quite left behind
in the path of carefully chaotic self destruction
Conveniently purging themselves of words whispered
in the throes of passion
Forced upon the ears of all naive enough to listen

Who carelessly expend countless hours playing with
condescending pawns disguised as adults
All grown up with no where to go
Replacing quality with quantity
Leaving long dull trails of breadcrumbs
leading to hearts long since lost
Never to be recovered again

Who follow sexuality by the book
doing this to get that for this him them who what when where
Why does the finish line have to be covered with brightly colored lace and muffled drunk cries chanting no

Who stare straight dead into the soul of love but never
Never into her eyes
Told she is not worthy of being addressed directly
Fingers itching to cop a feel
Only to discover the body is but a passage to her straight dead soul


Who trade in their voice mind and individuality
for half assed smiles and superficial men
As the face of a leviathan nicknamed acceptance
hands them a paycheck they’ve worked too
night day night night hard to refuse

Who idolize the feel of phantom limbs of lovers past
Twisted words convoluting their heads
Forcing on masks of pure heroine
at the sight of scars left on the soul
Scratching at the need to feel wanted
But cowering at the ability to truly be heard

Who have perfected the art of parallel painting
Elegant red streaks hidden beneath layers of
choppy dark colored hate covering pretty pale limbs
Seeming to fade as colorlessly caked on insecurities susurrate bitter-sweet nothings that curl themselves just inside her mutilated skin

Who scavenged their looks from the bottom of holes
they’re expected to clamber out of
Smiling pretty smiling
Being treated to complimentary meals
Only to be served plates full of disappointment.

Who crave companion’s flaws
in ruthless attempts to satisfy their hunger for compassion
Selfless beings dedicated to less than noble attempts at vanquish
The call for heat too satisfying to refuse the trade off forever uselessly launching themselves into razor sharp blades
aimed at ***** sleeves

Who see soft lips as cushion enough to fall from towers built of fear
Dragging moist palms across pavement thighs
Tearing at the seams holding their
hearts together

Who cower behind brick wall appearances
fruitlessly clutching on to ideas reserved for the most fortunate
Scaring away potential with claws that seemingly only come
out to play in the face of acceptance

Who’s sick stick thin limbs trail their worn down
fingernails in an effort mar skin no one can see
Streaks titillate their bright red scalps
A reflection of their underlying journey

Who disgorge yesterday's meal from stomachs long before empty
Blood spewing from the mouth an open wound
Continuously sewed up but never stitched tight correctly
Wiring shut opinions but never gorged enough to
muzzle their Howls



Ideas, calm and collected have long been hijacked and invaded by Hestia

Hestia! Consent! Content! Acceptance!
Long nights and roid rage men!
Two faces fighting a losing battle!
Girls playing mom! Boys playing war!
Ill ridden parents still pledging to the
United States of Controlling Media!

Hestia! Hestia!
Overall reign of Hestia!
Hestia the beautiful!
Incarcerated Hestia!
Hestia the ******!

Hestia twisted and shaped to form the voice of conformity
Hestia constantly watching over and monitoring
Hestia being told what to ******* think

Hestia seeping creeping sneaking into the
darkest crevices of our minds
Hestia when least expected coming out to say
“Hello”

Too late! Hestia’s already made herself at home
Wedged between the rooks of your biggest fear and
burrowed deep into the folds of
Your  Worst  Nightmare

**** in a constant battle between
rejecting Hestia,
and accepting her.
This was obviously inspired by Allen Ginsberg's "Howl."
Considering it was, at the time, the voice of that generation, Welcome to Generation Y.
This is a work in progress.
jcl Feb 5
you are may
i am december
kisses exchanged
during the bluing hour
child like
staring at you
in wonder and amazement
frosting night
falling snow
flakes in your auburn hair
i walk you home
in the cold frigid air
holding your hand
dreaming of you

you are rare
a beacon
a lighthouse
in a storm
in my daydreams
you are the pixie, the fairy inspiring me  
at night
you are the siren, i surrender to

a trifecta of youth, beauty, personality
you are refreshingly young
spring in my wintered life
preternaturally beautiful
perfection come to life
your femininity bewitching  
your youth intoxicating
your mannerism seducing
i would do anything for you

oozing sensuality
innocences
of a woman on the cusp
you hunger for sophistication
to be worldly-wise
seeking passage guidance
from an experienced traveller
the trade, the deal, is timeless
refined by evolution  

i am humbled
to have been chosen
the ultimate champion
of your ****** selection
in turn, you are my trophy
the spoils
of a never ending war

i know our time is short
the span of a bloom
a season at most
i know the outcome
seen the devastation
the problem is
we think we have time
https://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/24/arts/design/24wilson.html
chichee Jan 19
If you're a writer your main trade is hating yourself and
finding ways to be clever about it.
Smoke cigar and coffee-stained typewriters,
bachelor in the sixties, suicide in the seventies.
I'm just a cliché, raining cats and dogs, beating dead horses and singing
a little song about death
a little song about love
there is nothing new under the sun.
Dylan doesn't understand what you do is better than
accounting, your trade is people
like stock markets-
string them up and watch them fall
I play with hearts, you say like
a girl showing off her somersaults in the backyard.
But no one is listening.




So you burn your eyes out with hot wax in the living room
and swear
your name is Icarus
throw your diploma into the laundry and watch it turn into tissue paper,
taking moonlight walks down the beach and
straight into the bottom
of the ocean.

(you thought she would hit you
when you told her you wanted to write
but she only laughed...
and you were surprised
how much
it hurt.)

Your father's pride, a phone full of contacts,
seeing straight in the ******* morning and the heart
of a girl that was once foolish
enough to love nitroglycerine,
sold for
a bottle of ink and a scrap of paper
and your name in the
obituaries.
...
...
...

Tell yourself it was worth it.
Sometimes I think writers like me might be why no one reads anymore.
Lay no blame at her feet,
she of victory, torch of light.

Lay no blame at her feet,
an eagle soaring, trade her might!

Lay no blame at her feet,
for chaotic nations, destitute and plight.

Lay no blame at her feet,
the wicked crowned, wealth takes flight.

Lay no blame at her feet,
her majesty waning, her people benight.

Lay no blame at her feet,
'Taker of Blood;' red, blue, white.
FIRST DAY

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Chicago,
could this be
Sandburg’s City?

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

Chicago,
Sandburg’s Chicago,
Could it be?

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

Now also
tourist attractions
for a cafe society.

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

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

Great restaurants
serve liquid jazz
al la carte.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Its mouth our Dixie Trumpet
guarded by righteous Cajun brethren.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

3.
There is faith in everything in Chicago!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

4.
Does Chicago have a future?

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The analysts say
it’s all about capturing liquidity.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sorghum,
I think its hardy.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

This is an efficient market
that crosses the globe.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Many striver rows compose
its many neighborhoods.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


SECOND DAY

1.
Out my window
the sun has risen.

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

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

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

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

I set my watch
to Central Standard Time.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Always more.
Much much more
in Chicago.

2.
Sandburg
spoke all the dialects.

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

Sandburg understood
what it meant to laugh
and be happy.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

What level
is he speaking of?

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

I wonder
if I detect
condensation
in his voice?

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

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

This seditious talk!

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

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

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

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

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

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

It is the true level
of this city.

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

Splashing
the nation,
anointing
its people
with its
blessing.

A blessing,
Chicago?

All rivers
come here.

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sandburg knew
a Chicago
I will never know.

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

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

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

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

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

Hell even Chicago
got its own brand
of Blues.

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

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

The Blues live
on in Chicago.

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

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

Music:

Robert Johnson
Sweet Home Chicago


jbm
Chicago
1/7/99
Added today to commemorate the birthday of Carl Sandburg
Skaidrum Jun 2015
.
Ancient games
tell tales of dust.  |||   A story drawn
from the lips of two poets.



~~~~~


It's the wits that ****, not Queens of ivory or ink. *
Charged with
coal strokes, scraping up the lies.
Pawns & Knights slip between the grasp of the sun, leaking into
   lion jaws of Leo.
Shifting these granite plates, ignoring the Rooks common price of aslant.
Here we have slain kin, crescent traitors that backstab the night and battlefield.
Closed doors and trap floors, trade me a tie, swindling your tactic ruts.
Reality never got the noose around our necks, check turned into manslaughter, and kingdoms ripped asunder by the roar of Jupiter
Get up, get up, get away from these liars, they can't have your rank or your fire.
Peak a notion, this match is spared by a luft.
Toss away the pride buried 'neath your dusty skin, it don't matter no more if   death has you by the lips.
Silence is a language too in our eyes of earth.
Take my hand, knott your soul into this downfall, and brace yourself for the wreckage in our bones.
The Sword of Sorrows will fall 'pon your shoulders, not to slay thee, but to dub thee a new day.
The drums of war will knit the lyrics in the sky,
singing:
"The mighty sharpen their fangs, the weak sharpen their wisdom"
~~~~~
I'm tired of your wishbones, and golden scales, give me the hard-earned truth.
Hot coals of honesty may you tread upon, shadow-bitten remorseful may you be, don't stray off the course of Ursa major.
The North star isn't the one I follow
It's the moon with all of it's phases,
Eclipsing and crescent, tipping the sky with it's beauty.
Now let this sink further than any soul has ever sunk,
no man could ever
rule the moon.
~~~~~~
Shoot on command,
C
h    
      e
c  
      k
m
a
t      
e

~~~~
You could drag me to hell and back and those words wouldn't mean anything.
Let this downfall become a *downfell,

Because last I checked
"Wolves worship the moon"
and I have broke it's reflection in the water
Just
by
throwing
s                    
t          
o
         n
                 e
                              s
                               ­        .

.
A collab between
The Dragon Prince & Skaidrum.

I'll give most credit to
Kalum here.

© Copywrite The Dragon Prince & Skaidrum
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