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Tomato:
Big, juicy, red
INSANE!
Sneaks up upon unsuspecting
Unreliable
MATH TUTORS!
A terrible fight ensues!
Tomato or tutor?
Tutor or tomato?
Tomato knows no math.
Tutor has no seeds.
A standoff.
Tutor and tomato growl menacingly,
Circling one another
Like two pieces of meat
On a microwave turntable.
Suddenly, their rhythmic dance of Hate
Is broken
By the rhythmic sound of incoming
Imminent
Inescapable
Doom.
Tutor and tomato are trampled
Like a TV dinner
On the freeway.
I don’t know who
I’m supposed to be
Who I am
or who they want me to be
The answer’s not
so easy to see
Not well known
There's an uncertainty
Knee-**** answer
is to be
wholly free
I'll explain
in detail
Paint a picture clearly
A tutor's not needed
No need to study
No higher degree
With candor
I’ll speak

Let me tell you about
so-called “un-pleasantries"
The list is quite lengthy
A few;
maybe three
Gonna rattle them off
What's been mentioned to me
Not the worst of mistakes
but a category
May irritate some
To others
‘let be’
Saying that’s who I am
and as such
accept me
A minority group
not the majority
and by far
and by few
They are lost in between

Some say I’m intense
and can be
quite chatty
Loquacious
a talker
‘Verbose’ tendency
Don’t deny what is true
But not always guilty
The day in
and day out
doesn't constantly stream
Not sustained
They can change
Just like who
we will be
Not robots
Not copies
or placed on CD
Live a life
of routine
but not one
on repeat
Even still
I must say
there are worse things to be

Empathetic and kind
I give generously
All I have
My last dime
Will donate
each penny
I'm not searching for credit
Approval don't seek
Like to make others happy
Inside, I’m complete
When I focus on others
No discrepancy
I’m not dwelling
or thinking
of my tendencies
Please don't offer
your pity
or give charity
Try to bend; compromise
don’t perceive me
as weak
I'm the chivalrous type
Will get down
on one knee
Not walled off or closed up
Bare my soul
Give freely
But there's more
locked inside
So when time comes to speak
It’s a flood
a deluge
There's an intensity
Give too much
Give too quick
Try to stop
inside keep
I can bottle
it up
but sometimes
it still peaks
Little may trickle out
Suddenly
it will seep
If an access is given
Explodes
in a heap
When I love
I dive in
You may think I’m a freak
The emotional type
Tug heart strings
and I’ll weep
Not a blubbering fool
my emotions
run deep
A calm hand
I can sooth
Situation-ally
In a crisis
I’m strong
This unfortunately
is something
that I know
But don’t wish on
to speak
Life presents me
two roads
With both closed off
to me
Feel locked up
in a cage
while I look
to be free

A locked door
Here I stand
desperately for the key
Wanting answers
Assistance
A new found decree
Need a mantra
A mission
systemically
affecting systems
The true stem
of what’s me
Fundamental
My core
Sprouting roots from a tree
Happiness from the Sun
or beneath canopy
Not about
getting answers
Away goes the fee
Hamlet asked long ago
If 'to be or not be'
I know that it's different
Just work with me please
My point
is the question
In life, what to seek?
A life
that’s authentic
or society
We conform
and adapt
What they want us to be
If like me
you're unsure
It can drive you crazy
Take a chance?
And be pure
Live a life that's taint free
In return
you'll endure
Side remarks
and critiques
Is the juice worth the squeeze?
Be like them
or unique
Written: September 22, 2108

All rights reserved.
[Anapestic Hexameter Format]
Terry Collett Sep 2012
Delia who had bedded her
French nanny at fourteen
and had hot *** with the head

girl at boarding school, now
lies beside the arts tutor named
Ms Shopton in college. She has

explored the woman’s body from
top to toe. Invaded each orifice
and landed her ninety ninth

plus umpteenth kiss. Sunlight
pours through the high window,
the woman’s scent and body

odour invades the bed. She has
kissed most parts that can be kissed,
scanned the woman’s skin, taking

in the freckles, the spots, the mole
inside the left thigh, run her finger
along the spine. She watches the

woman sleep, the mouth slightly ajar,
the perfect teeth, the tongue (who
knows where that has been) touching

the corner of the lips. She may well
get a high A for this piece of art work,
the effort put in, the juices taken out,

the ******* and touching, the final lay.
She breathes in the air, runs her tongue
across her own damp lips. She hears

the college bell, the time to get up, the
breakfast call, the wide awake stare.
The woman beside her sleeps on, lying

worn out, out for the count, lying there.
Äŧül Sep 2017
You ask me a query,
You ask, "Where Are You, Honey?"

I have an answer for you,
I say, "I'm inside your heart, honey."

You let it extend, your doubt,
You implore, "But why is it so hazy?"

I fire a ******* in response,
I say, "It's hazy because you're lazy!"

You smile but get perplexed by now,
You ask, "Will you stay if moving on I fail to?"

I am mature and couth,
I say, "I find no reason good enough to not to."

You wonder to yourself,
You ask, "Where from I got you?"

I remind you that I came back,
I say, "I consider it my responsibility to imbue your life with the brightness,
The light lacking in your life,
And to provide you with warmth,
So that you are free from your shivers,
And so that you can be my wife,
I want to fill that void in your day,
Maybe I was sent back only for you,
On your mother's recommendation,
And so wise was her receptivity,
I know that I am a man of my words,
Surely I will make it large for us,
And you are such a hardworking lady,
Our children will have it healthy,
And they will surely have it wealthy,
The wealth won't just be material,
But they will be taught fine civility."


You now ask me your final query,
You ask, "Who will be their tutor?"

I smile and simply end this discussion,
I say, "Obviously, me and you."

Even you are satisfied by now,
You smile & say, "I love you, honey."

I hear what I have been longing to,
I say with a broad smile, "I love you too, honey."
∆∆∆∆∆∆∆
Another response to the poem by Pooja Shah: https://hellopoetry.com/poem/2075638/where-are-you-honey/

My HP Poem #1664
©Atul Kaushal
Nigel Morgan Oct 2012
I can imagine her in Aarhus Kunstmuseum coming across this painting, adjusting her glasses, pursing her lips then breaking out into a big smile. The gallery is almost empty. It is early in the day for visitors, but she is a tourist so allowances are made. Her partner meanwhile is in the Sankt Markus Kirke playing the *****, a 3 manual tracker-action gem built in 1967 by Poul Gerhard Anderson. Sweelink then Bach (the trio sonatas written for his son Johann Christian) are on the menu this morning. In the afternoon she will take herself off to one of the sandy beaches a bus ride away and work on a poem or two. He has arranged to play the grand 83-voice Frobinus ***** in the Cathedral. And so, with a few variations, some illustrious fugues and medley of fine meals in interesting restaurants, their stay in Denmark’s second city will be predictably delightful.
       She is a poet ‘(and a philosopher’, she would say with a grin), a gardener, (old roses and a Jarman-blue shed), a musician, (a recorder player and singer), a mother (four girls and a holy example), but her forte is research. A topic will appear and relentlessly she’d pursue it through visits to favourite libraries in Cambridge and London. In this relentless pursuit she would invariably uncover a web of other topics. These would fill her ‘temporary’ bookcase, her notebooks and her conversation. Then, sometimes, a poem would appear, or not.
          The postcard from Aarhus Kunstmuseum had sat on her table for some weeks until one quiet morning she decided she must ‘research’ this Sosphus Claussen and his colleagues. The poem ‘Imperia’ intrigued her. She knew very little Danish literature. Who did for goodness sake! Hans Christian Anderson she dismissed, but Søren Kierkegaard she had read a little. When a student, her tutor had talked about this author’s use of the pseudonym, a very Socratic device, and one she too had played with as a poet. Claussen’s name was absent from any online lists (Were there really on 60 poets in Danish literature?). Roge appeared, and the painter Willumsen had a whole museum dedicated to his work; this went beyond his El Greco-like canvases into sculpture, graphics, architecture and photography. He looked an interesting character she thought as she browsed his archive. The one thing these three gentlemen held in common was an adherence to the symbolist aesthetic. They were symbolists.
         For her the symbolists were writers, playwrights, artists and composers who in the later years of the 19C wanted to capture absolute truth through indirect methods. They created work in a highly metaphorical and suggestive manner, endowing particular images or objects with symbolic meaning. Her studies in philosophy had brought her to Schopenhauer who considered Art to be ‘a contemplative refuge from the world of strife’. Wasn’t this what the symbolists were all about?
         Her former husband had introduced her to the world of Maurice Maeterlinck through Debussy’s Pelleas and those spare, intense, claustrophobic dramas like Le Malheure Passe. It was interesting how the discovery of the verse of the ancient Chinese had appeared at the time of the symbolist project, and so influenced it. Collections like The Jade Flute that, in speaking of the everyday and the natural world, held with such simplicity rich symbolic messages. Anyway, she didn’t do feelings in her poetry.
           When she phoned the composer who had fathered three of her children he said to her surprise ‘Delius’. He explained: C.F. Keary was the librettist for the two operas Delius composed. Keary wrote a novel called The Journalist (1898) based on Sosphus, a writer who wrote plays ‘heavily laced with symbolism’ and who had also studied art and painted in Paris. Keary knew Claussen, who he described as a poet, novelist, playwright, painter, journalist and eventually a newspaper owner. Claussen was a close friend of Verlaine and very much part of the Bohemian circle in Paris. Claussen and Delius’ circle intersected in the person of Herman Bang, a theatre director who produced Claussen’s Arbedjersken (The Factory Girl). Clauseen wrote an important poem on Bang’s demise, which Delius set to music.
          She was impressed. ‘How is it that you know so much about Delius?’, she asked. He was a modernist, on the experimental edge of contemporary music. ‘Ah’, he replied, ‘I once researched the background to Delius’ Requiem. I read the composer’s Collected Letters (he was a very serious letter writer – sometimes 10 a day), and got stuck into the letters of his Paris years when so many of his friends were Scandinavian émigrés. You once sent me a postcard of a painting by Wilhumsen. It was of Clauseen reading to two of his ‘symbolist’ colleagues. I think you’d picked it up in Denmark. You said, if I recall, that you’d found it ‘irresistible’’.
          And so it was, this painting. Irresistible. She decided that its irresistibility lay in the way the artist had caught the head and body positions of reader and listeners. The arrangement of legs, she thought, says so much about a man. Her husband had always sat with the care embedded in his training as a musician at an instrument. He could slouch like the rest of us, she thought, but when he sat properly, attentive to her words, or listening to their sweet children, he was beautiful. She still loved him, and remembered the many poems she had composed for him, poems he had never seen (she had instructed a daughter to ‘collect’ them for him on her passing). Now, it was he who wrote poetry, for another, for a significant other he had said was his Muse, his soul’s delight, his dearly beloved.
          The wicker chair Sophos Claussen is sitting in, she decided, she would like in her sitting room. It looked the perfect chair for giving a reading. She imagined reading one of her poems from such a chair . . .
 
If daydreams are wrecks of something divine
I’m amazed by the tediousness of mine.
I’m always the power behind throne.
I rescue princes to make my own.

 
‘And so it goes’, she thought, quoting that American author she could never remember. So it goes, this strange life, where it seems possible for the mind to enter an apartment in 19C København and call up the smell of brilliantined hair, cigar tobacco, and the samovar in the kitchen. This poem Imperia I shall probably never read, she thought, though there is some American poet on a Fulbright intent on translating Claussen’s work into English. In a flash of the mind’s miracle she travels to his tiny office in his Mid-West university, surrounded by the detritus of student tutorials. In blue jeans and cowboys boots Devon Whittall gazes out of his third storey window at the falling snow.
 
There is nothing in the world as quiet as snow,
when it gently descends through the air,
muffles your steps
hushes, gently hushes
the voices that speak too loud.
 
There is nothing in the world of a purity like snow's,
swan's down from the white wings of Heaven,
On your hand a flake
is like dew of tears,
White thoughts quietly tread in dance.
 
There is nothing in the world that can gentle like snow,
quietly you listen to the silent ringing.
Oh, so fine a sound,
peals of silver bells,
rings within your innermost heart.

 
And she imagines Helge Rode (his left arm still on his right shoulder) reading his poem Snow in the quiet of the winter afternoon at Ellehammersvej 20 Kastrup Copenhagen. ‘And so it goes,’ she thought, ‘this imagination, flowing on and on. When I am really old like my Grandmother (discharging herself from hospital at 103 because the food was so appalling) will my imagination continue to be as rich and capable as it is today?’
          Closing her notebook and shutting down her laptop, she removed her cat from its cushion on the table, and walked out into her garden, leaving three Danish Symbolists to their readings and deliberations.
jeffrey robin Jul 2010
i sit at the library computer.

across the room TUTOR JOHN prepares
his lessons for the free CITIZENSHIP CLASSES he conducts
for the punjabis, mexicans hmungs and others seeking
to pass the immigration service citizenship test.

he is a great man.

it  is not surprising to say that he likes me and is my friend
as i am his friend

why is that?

in the simplicity the seed forms itself into
viable human forms and human beings

this we all know
yes we do
Marshall Gass Jul 2014
Nimble fingered she scaled high mountains
teary eyed swam in delicate balances of mozart
saint saens, beethoven, schubert, unmindful
that i watched in awe and grace at her aquiline features
melting in those crescendos of throbbing chords
and intricate switches between registers of scales.

i struggled to keep the pace, tame the tempo,
feel the texture and tone, sing in my heart
that which felt pure crystalline diamonds
sparkling at an evenings lesson. I went faithfully
every two days just to watch and wonder
at the magic she spun with her fingers.

No orchestra ever came close to this feeling
no symphony ever beat its pulse in my passion
as this piano tutor did.

Did she play alone for me,
for somebody else
or held a conversation with the masters
while I watched  as a witness?

The only time she ever played chopin,
and the minute waltz
the tears rolled down freely
from both our cheeks.

'thank you, sir,  for listening'
she said smiling
' you alone made an audience
of a hundred and fifty'

Author Notes

She was beautiful.
© Marshall Gass. All rights reserved, 10 days ago

- See more at: http://allpoetry.com/poem/11580746-The-piano-tutor......-by-Marshall-Gass#sthash.yW3jTCNC.d­puf
Ken Pepiton Oct 2018
cliche. click
I'm lost without you

you glanced my way and said,
"how do you know?"

I don't.
I won't.
I can't.

You glance away and say,
"maybe so."

Life's the test.
----
stand alone or be rejected
objected
the subject of the action word
conjecturing the meaning

Hector's pride brought the mass.
Was that made sacred? Yechhh.

Higgs's made real,  massive change
end of the world
as we knew it, 2012, mass means more than x-mas

The message in the messenger from Greece's God,
"Hold fast, hold on, Hector, be
hold-- what a drag"

Achilles, shoulda had anger management.

Suppose, Achilles's momma had trusted
whatever the protection was to be,
divine, that kind o' dad,
it warn't gonna let 'im drown.

She coulda just tossed 'im in,
sink or swim, knowing, in her inner parts,
the protector's promise,
memorized, since the red tent.

Pandora's last hope trumps fire,
and flood,

Wee Achilles woulda squirmed, and swam,
invincible, every inch soaked,

it could been, but, you know,
Achilles's momma could not let go.

And the rest is mythtery.

---
the sign said follow the money,

but money is invisible, so I played like
I could see what other folk
saw.

Lot o'them took time to tell me,
"Only believe", or "trust, and obey".
Streets of gold,
we'll slide back
down on silk stockings
hung on spider thread

above the flames

that boil the kettle in the center of
the whole round world,

nobody in our family ever once
believed the world is flat,

nor that Jesus once was blue and had four arms,

stop me.
I was wrong, I, myself, can imagine
Jesus dressed as Rama,
who was blue and had four busy arms, in truth.

hallowed ev'ening of the light,
settling sun, lead in the night, when all
see monsters, every where,

no one will notice me. Watch and see.

OH OH, ****** me by my pigtail, lift me to the third
floor, two stories past tellestial,
kingdom come,
which the mormon at my door testified
the angelic ***** had told Brigham 'n'em,

in the spirit, he agreed, not face to face.

tellestial is as close to hell as a Mormon man can go,
and,
he said, "If you could see it, you'd die to go.
It's so much better than this."

Joe Smith, said that, according to his agent.

I pondered,
chewed a cud, as I could recall, holy cows do.

I leaned back, put one boot to rest,
on the bricks behind my knee,

A modified Crane pose, I suppose.
I folded my arms and stared that boy
right in the eye.

I said, "Wanna try?"
"We gotta bridge up the road a piece,
sure as haell,
we'll see if it's a lie, at least."

Then I repented.
That hell imagined by Joe and all them zionic-messengers,
they was guesses, at the best. But the feelers at my door,
they was bein' tempted
to put their own faith to the test.

I grow bolder. The experiment worked.
I know.
Same ol' story...

-She said it tasted,
okeh,
first time that word was ever heard or tasted.

Cool,
****, cold, evil, winter, summer, sweat, mosquitos, evil cold,
I'm sorry!

How do you know?
What's blame?
Oh, that, and shame, I know that,

epi genetically be guile-ish. gullibility
gone in one bite.

Taste and see, he saw her say, or thought
he did

Like a switch, with more capacitance,
than the cells of knowing can resist,
in the first few months of being matter in time.

Knock a fella in the head
with knowing all the hows of evil,
along with all the why of not,

the most beautiful woman in the world,
no contest,
naked, and he knows.

Thinkin' straight ain't in the plan.
Precedent set forever,
no plan survives first sight of a naked woman after learning what naked means,

according to the tutor in blame,
who sat glumly on Adam's shoulder
explaining as the jist
of the story unrolls, "naked is evil,
you are naked", no word, just
thinkin'

good luck if yer helpin' him stand,
Wham

spoken words heard and
obey essence initial instantiation
revere
lionize,

oops, Idols. The idea of idols. Don't imagine anything like that.

Gabriel came with that very message all over his face.

Knowin' evil and doin' it, not the same.
Learn to drive and do the math,

Then we talk about artifice beyond the ken of mortal minds,
not worry,
it is written, We have the mind of Christ,

but as an augmentation really,
we can fact check,
but, honest,
a heretic has to use any augmentations right,
or the being powers will

objectify his reason for being, and reject him, for

the sin of defining the happiness he ensues.

You with me?
----
This was to be my comment,
but it called out for search engine priority of purpose

Nothin', I was thinkin' --
we never get trick or treaters,
tho' an occasional Mormon team will try to climb my hill,
then I un cussed my thoughts
with my inner self and we agreed.
He who would catch fish,
must venture his bait.
Net criticism's needed, if anything is to get better than this.
Wise ones say, it ain't easy,
but true rest,
I can testify, it's found along the way.

Hallowed be your even-ing, level up,

trick or treat?
not on that old man's hill,
somethin' weird, too peaceful there.
Nothin', I was thinkin' -- we never get trick or treaters, tho' an occasional Mormon team will try to climb my hill,then I un cussed my thoughts with my inner self and we agreed. He who would catch fish, must venture his bait. Net criticism needed, if anything is to get better than this.
Nigel Morgan Dec 2012
He said I’m the wrong shape. I could do with putting on a few pounds and, almost as an after thought he said, you’ll have to cut your hair – yourself.  I know she was an artist, and a mother, and a gardener. I had to admit to him I didn’t know any painters. My cousin Julie’s a sculptor – same thing he said – but I had to tell him I hadn’t yet looked at her painting, only what he showed us in his presentation.  He then told me exactly where in the National Museum of Wales I could see one of her paintings – Gallery 14 – and its from this period, a Parisiene picture. He suggested I might go to Cambridge and spend a day at a place called Kettles Yard. There are more Winifreds there than anywhere else in the UK, and many pictures by her close friend Christopher Wood.
 
Oh dear. This is difficult. The only thing going for me seems I’m about the right age and I’ve have children, though mine are older than hers in the production. I was so surprised to get this part, but as Michael said over the phone, your profile fits. Except for the weight and the hair, and I know nothing about painting. Why should I? Jeff told me, the composer Morton Feldman once said if you haven’t got a friend whose a painter, you’re in trouble. I’m in trouble. But he has very kind eyes and when he touched me gently on the shoulder after Lizzie and I sung that shells duet I had to look away.
 
Reaching down arm-deep into bright water
I gathered on white sand under waves
Shells, drifted up on beaches where I alone
Inhabit a finite world of years and days.
I reached my arm down a myriad years
To gather treasure from the yester-millennial sea-floor,
Held in my fingers forms shaped on the day of creation….
 
They sleep on the ocean floor like humming-tops
Whose music is the mother-of-pearl octave of the rainbow,
Harmonious shells that whisper for ever in our ears,
‘The world that you inhabit has not yet been created’

 
Mind you, I don’t envy Lizzie being Kathleen Raine. Now that is a difficult part, even though she’s only in Act 2. Raine was definitely odd. He says I have to understand their friendship, because there was something about it that made them both more than they were. I don’t understand that.
 
Jane and the children are amazing already. Martin (my ‘other’ half Ben Nicholson) said they’d been rehearsing with Robert because his wife (Robert’s wife Debbie) is at WNO and they were scared about this one. I’ll say this for him he knows exactly how children interrupt, constantly. It’s clever the way he uses the interruptions to change direction of the dialogue. Conversations are often left unfinished. The bit when that ***** Barbara visits the apartment unexpectedly is brilliant. She’s completely demolished by these kids of her lover.
 
But those letters . . . he said, can you imagine your husband writing to you over a period of 40 years? Quite a thought that. David wrote to me a few times when I was in Madrid for Cosi just after we’d met, but it was all telephone calls after that. Why waste paper, time and a stamp. But I take his point – their letters are so beautiful – and they were separated for God’s sake. He’d gone off with another woman, and even brought her to Paris. And you could not have two totally different women – she ,slight, chain-smoking, work-a-holic, sharp-tongued with that Yorkshire edge, and me with ‘a quiet voice, trying always to be gentle and kind ‘– W would be called an earth-mother these days. She was a kind of hippie, only she had money – mind you most of those hippies of the 60s had money otherwise they couldn’t have done drugs (heard that on Radio 4 last week in a programme about Richard Brautigan). But they wrote to each other almost every day.
 
Dear Ben,.
            Do you know there are several kinds of happiness, and there is one sort which I have found. It is the sort that is within oneself, enjoying fresh promise, and taking all the experiences of life that one has been through, so-called sad ones and so-called happy ones, to make up understanding that is further on than joy or sorrow. I have been extremely lucky – I have had ten years of companionship with an ‘all-time’ painter, working in the medium of classic eternity and that has been better than a lifetime with any second-class person – isn’t it - I have found it so…
 
Best love Winifred

 
What’s clever about the letter sequences is the way the two-way correspondence is handled as a duet and right in the middle of it you’ll get a flashback – like Winifred suddenly remembering her first meeting with Ben.
 
I heard this voice
In the room next door
I couldn’t breath, I couldn’t move
I knew, I knew for certain
This was the man I would marry.
And when we were introduced
He seemed to know this too.

 
We gaily call this an opera, but it’s not. It’s something else. It simply doesn’t do what you think it’s going to do. Even when you do something for a second time the accompaniment doesn’t do what you expect and remembered. It’s this open-form business. Something else I know nothing about. He mentioned Umberto Eco – now I’ve read Name of the Rose. When Braque or Mondrian or Jan Eps visit unannounced I have no idea which one it’s going to be – these guys just used to turn up. Sometimes two at once. W didn’t invite them. They came for her English hospitality (home baking I think) and her beautiful apartment come studio – beautiful, because she made it so. Her French was appalling, and this is difficult because I speak quite well, and now I have to speak like an idiot. Bridget  (playing Cissy the Cumbrian nanny) having her French lesson is a hoot, and with the children correcting her all the time, it’s lovely.
 
He was very sweet when we broke for lunch. Sara, he said, as I collapsed into an auditorium seat to find my bag and mobile, Sara, we’ve got to find you a painter to spend a day with . . . so you’ll know how to stand in front of an easel.  I phoned Sarah Jane Brown who has a studio in Cardiff and she’d love to meet you. Here’s her number. She paints flowers and landscapes – as well as the abstract stuff - just like Winifred. Her tutor at the RCA actually knew Winifred. And with that he disappeared to a dark corner of the theatre and unwrapped his sandwiches. You can tell he’s not into break discussions with Julian or Michael. I think he’s terribly shy. He’s interested in the cast and so he picks them off one by one. Julian I know doesn’t like this. I think everything needs to go through me, he said at the end of yesterday’s rehearsal. Who does he think he is?! Lizzie reminded Julian he was the composer and what he doesn’t know about this whole period and its characters isn’t knowledge. Liz thinks he’s a sweetie – and she’s sung his Raine settings at Branwyn Hall last year – with Robert who was his MD with BBCNOW. Liz knows Julian hasn’t done his usual homework because he’s got this production in Birmingham on the boil. Unknown Colour is a distraction he can do without.
 
This afternoon it’s back to the mayhem of those ensemble scenes in Act 1. They’re quite crazy, but I’m already beginning to feel I can start to be someone other than me. Did you know I have this lovely song? It’s quite Sondheim . . .
 
*I like to have a picture in my room.
Without one, my room feels bare
however much furniture is there;
Pictures play so many roles.
My room has too much going on in it
for something extravagant.
In the morning it is a sanctuary,
in the daytime a factory,
in the evening a place of festivity,
and through the night a place of rest.
 
I want a window in it,  
And a focal point, something alive and silent.
A bunch of flowers on the window sill?
Yes, but they will wither.
A cat curled up on the hearth?
Yes, but it will go away and prowl upon the rooftops.
 
A picture will always be there.
It will make no sound. It will wait.
If it is true I shall never grow tired of it.
I shall see something fresh in it
when I glance at it tomorrow.
It will always be my friend.
Indian Phoenix Oct 2012
The very first thing I learned about you was your ex-communication from Mormonism. Did you really try teaching a preschool class that Jesus was a Rastafarian? Or was that one of your many big fish tales told to me over the years?

This was when you were only a mischievous high-schooler. Not the cynic you are today, worn down after choosing the safest choices life can offer. When did a clever person like you acquiesce to such homogeneity? Somewhere between your Economist-reading days in undergrad and law school? I know you claim the reason was something about getting your heart broken one too many times. And yes, I know I whacked it around like a pinata... as you did mine. Because that's what reckless kids do. Will you ever accept this as an excuse? Or will you always use it as the reason to avoid my calls?

Back at the age of 15, though, you could do no wrong. A shy smile was all you'd see from me, but I'd go to bed dreaming of all of the clever things I wanted to say to you. My friends would later say you exploited your teaching role as my debate tutor... but me? I was totally, utterly, and blissfully enamored by your explanation of Foucault and FoPo. I'm convinced the reason you fell in love with me was because I wrote a letter to Crayola pretending to be 5 in hopes of getting a free pack of crayons. You liked that kind of smart *** behavior because it was the kind of stuff that made you come alive. Which reminds me... do you still have the "#1 bestseller" sign you swiped from the grocery store? You wore it in your back pocket while wearing your "I spoil my grandkids" t-shirt.

How appropriate that our first kiss was on the debate room couch. I'm glad kissing was, in fact, better for you with your braces removed. And how appropriate that my first date was you taking me to the high school musical, "Kiss Me Kate."

What is it about first loves that make even the most mundane so magical? I can't tell you the number of times I looked out the window in hopes of seeing your red Ford Escort pull up. It took my breath away more than any Mercedes could. Who knows what we'd do when you did come over--probably play Donkey Kong Country, or watch some ironic movie like Donnie Darko. If nobody was home we'd make out to the Disney "Fantasia" soundtrack.

Back then you were always intrigued with the whimsical. Nowadays it's 1940s classics, malt scotch and Coachella concerts. I think your career ***** you so dry of life that you overcompensate with your expensive tastes. The wildest you'd ever get was smoking a hookah. But the guy I remember? He liked pocket watches, Rufus Wainwright, and Harry Connick Jr. I know you're a responsible tax-paying adult now, but I still see you as the wild-eyed wholesome troublemaker you once were. I prefer you that way, even if it's mentally dishonest of me.

Since you, men have wined and dined me at world-renowned resorts and have taken me to presidential *****. But none of these dates have given me the same rush of euphoria as sneaking out and spending the night with you in the home you were house-sitting: That night, we were a pair of 16-year-old rebels. At least we didn't get caught by the cops making out in the high school's agriculture department parking lot. That would happen in a few months' time.

Then you left for college, to gain an education and have experiences that sounded overwhelming for my sheltered ears. It didn't matter that I left for Europe that year--you had left for college, which was a distance in my head that couldn't be measured geographically.

I could recall a thousand barbs exchanged from then until we both finished college: you dated her. I dated him! We made promises. We broke promises. You'd come home for summer. We relished in the relatively new-found art of *******, mostly perfected on each other in our youth. We'd hate each other. We'd love each other. Your friend would hate me; my sister would hate you. On it would go.

But there were such sweet times. We saw Harry Potter together and we sat on my roof, imagining that one night could stretch til forever as we looked up at the stars. It was then that you dedicated Coldplay's "Yellow" to me. And no expression of love was greater than seeing you in the back of the auditorium, waiting to drive me home after my 6th period drama class.

I honestly don't know the person you are today. Sure, you give me snippets. Usually when some girl breaks your heart and you need to vent. In truth, I know you saw me as your plan B. Always. Shame on me for playing that part so beautifully for so long. Could we have worked out, you and me? I smile, knowing that some things from the past should stay firmly rooted where they are. There would always be a part of me that would feel like that freshman trying to impress you, a senior. All the while I wouldn't feel funny enough, cool enough, witty enough by comparison. No, we simply wouldn't work.

You know the rule, about loving your family because they're the only one you've got? I think the same is true with first loves. When I reflect on our oh-so-ordinary relationship, you--I mean, US: we weren't so great. Nothing special.

But my heart sure seems to think you were... even after all of these years.
Infamous one Mar 2013
Not one to give advice but willing to help others.
Coaching has taught to lead a team
Mentoring peers to helping them excel
Giving pointers on writing many talents
The best way to master is teach
Multiple repetitions an practice
Skills aren't natural they are learned
I send my voice into your mouth
You return the compliment

I am the Count of Cannizzaro
You are Her Royal Highness the Princess Augusta

I am the thaumaturgic chain
You hold the opera glass and cards

You become extemporaneous song
I am your tutor

You are my invisible seed
I am Timour the Tartar

You are my curious trick
I your enchanted caddy

I am your confounding doll
You my confounded dummy.
“I cannot but remember such things were,
  And were most dear to me.”
  ‘Macbeth’

  [”That were most precious to me.”
  ‘Macbeth’, act iv, sc. 3.]


When slow Disease, with all her host of Pains,
Chills the warm tide, which flows along the veins;
When Health, affrighted, spreads her rosy wing,
And flies with every changing gale of spring;
Not to the aching frame alone confin’d,
Unyielding pangs assail the drooping mind:
What grisly forms, the spectre-train of woe,
Bid shuddering Nature shrink beneath the blow,
With Resignation wage relentless strife,
While Hope retires appall’d, and clings to life.
Yet less the pang when, through the tedious hour,
Remembrance sheds around her genial power,
Calls back the vanish’d days to rapture given,
When Love was bliss, and Beauty form’d our heaven;
Or, dear to youth, pourtrays each childish scene,
Those fairy bowers, where all in turn have been.
As when, through clouds that pour the summer storm,
The orb of day unveils his distant form,
Gilds with faint beams the crystal dews of rain
And dimly twinkles o’er the watery plain;
Thus, while the future dark and cheerless gleams,
The Sun of Memory, glowing through my dreams,
Though sunk the radiance of his former blaze,
To scenes far distant points his paler rays,
Still rules my senses with unbounded sway,
The past confounding with the present day.

Oft does my heart indulge the rising thought,
Which still recurs, unlook’d for and unsought;
My soul to Fancy’s fond suggestion yields,
And roams romantic o’er her airy fields.
Scenes of my youth, develop’d, crowd to view,
To which I long have bade a last adieu!
Seats of delight, inspiring youthful themes;
Friends lost to me, for aye, except in dreams;
Some, who in marble prematurely sleep,
Whose forms I now remember, but to weep;
Some, who yet urge the same scholastic course
Of early science, future fame the source;
Who, still contending in the studious race,
In quick rotation, fill the senior place!
These, with a thousand visions, now unite,
To dazzle, though they please, my aching sight.

IDA! blest spot, where Science holds her reign,
How joyous, once, I join’d thy youthful train!
Bright, in idea, gleams thy lofty spire,
Again, I mingle with thy playful quire;
Our tricks of mischief, every childish game,
Unchang’d by time or distance, seem the same;
Through winding paths, along the glade I trace
The social smile of every welcome face;
My wonted haunts, my scenes of joy or woe,
Each early boyish friend, or youthful foe,
Our feuds dissolv’d, but not my friendship past,—
I bless the former, and forgive the last.
Hours of my youth! when, nurtur’d in my breast,
To Love a stranger, Friendship made me blest,—
Friendship, the dear peculiar bond of youth,
When every artless ***** throbs with truth;
Untaught by worldly wisdom how to feign,
And check each impulse with prudential rein;
When, all we feel, our honest souls disclose,
In love to friends, in open hate to foes;
No varnish’d tales the lips of youth repeat,
No dear-bought knowledge purchased by deceit;
Hypocrisy, the gift of lengthen’d years,
Matured by age, the garb of Prudence wears:
When, now, the Boy is ripen’d into Man,
His careful Sire chalks forth some wary plan;
Instructs his Son from Candour’s path to shrink,
Smoothly to speak, and cautiously to think;
Still to assent, and never to deny—
A patron’s praise can well reward the lie:
And who, when Fortune’s warning voice is heard,
Would lose his opening prospects for a word?
Although, against that word, his heart rebel,
And Truth, indignant, all his ***** swell.

  Away with themes like this! not mine the task,
From flattering friends to tear the hateful mask;
Let keener bards delight in Satire’s sting,
My Fancy soars not on Detraction’s wing:
Once, and but once, she aim’d a deadly blow,
To hurl Defiance on a secret Foe;
But when that foe, from feeling or from shame,
The cause unknown, yet still to me the same,
Warn’d by some friendly hint, perchance, retir’d,
With this submission all her rage expired.
From dreaded pangs that feeble Foe to save,
She hush’d her young resentment, and forgave.
Or, if my Muse a Pedant’s portrait drew,
POMPOSUS’ virtues are but known to few:
I never fear’d the young usurper’s nod,
And he who wields must, sometimes, feel the rod.
If since on Granta’s failings, known to all
Who share the converse of a college hall,
She sometimes trifled in a lighter strain,
’Tis past, and thus she will not sin again:
Soon must her early song for ever cease,
And, all may rail, when I shall rest in peace.

  Here, first remember’d be the joyous band,
Who hail’d me chief, obedient to command;
Who join’d with me, in every boyish sport,
Their first adviser, and their last resort;
Nor shrunk beneath the upstart pedant’s frown,
Or all the sable glories of his gown;
Who, thus, transplanted from his father’s school,
Unfit to govern, ignorant of rule—
Succeeded him, whom all unite to praise,
The dear preceptor of my early days,
PROBUS, the pride of science, and the boast—
To IDA now, alas! for ever lost!
With him, for years, we search’d the classic page,
And fear’d the Master, though we lov’d the Sage:
Retir’d at last, his small yet peaceful seat
From learning’s labour is the blest retreat.
POMPOSUS fills his magisterial chair;
POMPOSUS governs,—but, my Muse, forbear:
Contempt, in silence, be the pedant’s lot,
His name and precepts be alike forgot;
No more his mention shall my verse degrade,—
To him my tribute is already paid.

  High, through those elms with hoary branches crown’d
Fair IDA’S bower adorns the landscape round;
There Science, from her favour’d seat, surveys
The vale where rural Nature claims her praise;
To her awhile resigns her youthful train,
Who move in joy, and dance along the plain;
In scatter’d groups, each favour’d haunt pursue,
Repeat old pastimes, and discover new;
Flush’d with his rays, beneath the noontide Sun,
In rival bands, between the wickets run,
Drive o’er the sward the ball with active force,
Or chase with nimble feet its rapid course.
But these with slower steps direct their way,
Where Brent’s cool waves in limpid currents stray,
While yonder few search out some green retreat,
And arbours shade them from the summer heat:
Others, again, a pert and lively crew,
Some rough and thoughtless stranger plac’d in view,
With frolic quaint their antic jests expose,
And tease the grumbling rustic as he goes;
Nor rest with this, but many a passing fray
Tradition treasures for a future day:
“’Twas here the gather’d swains for vengeance fought,
And here we earn’d the conquest dearly bought:
Here have we fled before superior might,
And here renew’d the wild tumultuous fight.”
While thus our souls with early passions swell,
In lingering tones resounds the distant bell;
Th’ allotted hour of daily sport is o’er,
And Learning beckons from her temple’s door.
No splendid tablets grace her simple hall,
But ruder records fill the dusky wall:
There, deeply carv’d, behold! each Tyro’s name
Secures its owner’s academic fame;
Here mingling view the names of Sire and Son,
The one long grav’d, the other just begun:
These shall survive alike when Son and Sire,
Beneath one common stroke of fate expire;
Perhaps, their last memorial these alone,
Denied, in death, a monumental stone,
Whilst to the gale in mournful cadence wave
The sighing weeds, that hide their nameless grave.
And, here, my name, and many an early friend’s,
Along the wall in lengthen’d line extends.
Though, still, our deeds amuse the youthful race,
Who tread our steps, and fill our former place,
Who young obeyed their lords in silent awe,
Whose nod commanded, and whose voice was law;
And now, in turn, possess the reins of power,
To rule, the little Tyrants of an hour;
Though sometimes, with the Tales of ancient day,
They pass the dreary Winter’s eve away;
“And, thus, our former rulers stemm’d the tide,
And, thus, they dealt the combat, side by side;
Just in this place, the mouldering walls they scaled,
Nor bolts, nor bars, against their strength avail’d;
Here PROBUS came, the rising fray to quell,
And, here, he falter’d forth his last farewell;
And, here, one night abroad they dared to roam,
While bold POMPOSUS bravely staid at home;”
While thus they speak, the hour must soon arrive,
When names of these, like ours, alone survive:
Yet a few years, one general wreck will whelm
The faint remembrance of our fairy realm.

  Dear honest race! though now we meet no more,
One last long look on what we were before—
Our first kind greetings, and our last adieu—
Drew tears from eyes unus’d to weep with you.
Through splendid circles, Fashion’s gaudy world,
Where Folly’s glaring standard waves unfurl’d,
I plung’d to drown in noise my fond regret,
And all I sought or hop’d was to forget:
Vain wish! if, chance, some well-remember’d face,
Some old companion of my early race,
Advanc’d to claim his friend with honest joy,
My eyes, my heart, proclaim’d me still a boy;
The glittering scene, the fluttering groups around,
Were quite forgotten when my friend was found;
The smiles of Beauty, (for, alas! I’ve known
What ’tis to bend before Love’s mighty throne;)
The smiles of Beauty, though those smiles were dear,
Could hardly charm me, when that friend was near:
My thoughts bewilder’d in the fond surprise,
The woods of IDA danc’d before my eyes;
I saw the sprightly wand’rers pour along,
I saw, and join’d again the joyous throng;
Panting, again I trac’d her lofty grove,
And Friendship’s feelings triumph’d over Love.

  Yet, why should I alone with such delight
Retrace the circuit of my former flight?
Is there no cause beyond the common claim,
Endear’d to all in childhood’s very name?
Ah! sure some stronger impulse vibrates here,
Which whispers friendship will be doubly dear
To one, who thus for kindred hearts must roam,
And seek abroad, the love denied at home.
Those hearts, dear IDA, have I found in thee,
A home, a world, a paradise to me.
Stern Death forbade my orphan youth to share
The tender guidance of a Father’s care;
Can Rank, or e’en a Guardian’s name supply
The love, which glistens in a Father’s eye?
For this, can Wealth, or Title’s sound atone,
Made, by a Parent’s early loss, my own?
What Brother springs a Brother’s love to seek?
What Sister’s gentle kiss has prest my cheek?
For me, how dull the vacant moments rise,
To no fond ***** link’d by kindred ties!
Oft, in the progress of some fleeting dream,
Fraternal smiles, collected round me seem;
While still the visions to my heart are prest,
The voice of Love will murmur in my rest:
I hear—I wake—and in the sound rejoice!
I hear again,—but, ah! no Brother’s voice.
A Hermit, ’midst of crowds, I fain must stray
Alone, though thousand pilgrims fill the way;
While these a thousand kindred wreaths entwine,
I cannot call one single blossom mine:
What then remains? in solitude to groan,
To mix in friendship, or to sigh alone?
Thus, must I cling to some endearing hand,
And none more dear, than IDA’S social band.

  Alonzo! best and dearest of my friends,
Thy name ennobles him, who thus commends:
From this fond tribute thou canst gain no praise;
The praise is his, who now that tribute pays.
Oh! in the promise of thy early youth,
If Hope anticipate the words of Truth!
Some loftier bard shall sing thy glorious name,
To build his own, upon thy deathless fame:
Friend of my heart, and foremost of the list
Of those with whom I lived supremely blest;
Oft have we drain’d the font of ancient lore,
Though drinking deeply, thirsting still the more;
Yet, when Confinement’s lingering hour was done,
Our sports, our studies, and our souls were one:
Together we impell’d the flying ball,
Together waited in our tutor’s hall;
Together join’d in cricket’s manly toil,
Or shar’d the produce of the river’s spoil;
Or plunging from the green declining shore,
Our pliant limbs the buoyant billows bore:
In every element, unchang’d, the same,
All, all that brothers should be, but the name.

  Nor, yet, are you forgot, my jocund Boy!
DAVUS, the harbinger of childish joy;
For ever foremost in the ranks of fun,
The laughing herald of the harmless pun;
Yet, with a breast of such materials made,
Anxious to please, of pleasing half afraid;
Candid and liberal, with a heart of steel
In Danger’s path, though not untaught to feel.
Still, I remember, in the factious strife,
The rustic’s musket aim’d against my life:
High pois’d in air the massy weapon hung,
A cry of horror burst from every tongue:
Whilst I, in combat with another foe,
Fought on, unconscious of th’ impending blow;
Your arm, brave Boy, arrested his career—
Forward you sprung, insensible to fear;
Disarm’d, and baffled by your conquering hand,
The grovelling Savage roll’d upon the sand:
An act like this, can simple thanks repay?
Or all the labours of a grateful lay?
Oh no! whene’er my breast forgets the deed,
That instant, DAVUS, it deserves to bleed.

  LYCUS! on me thy claims are justly great:
Thy milder virtues could my Muse relate,
To thee, alone, unrivall’d, would belong
The feeble efforts of my lengthen’d song.
Well canst thou boast, to lead in senates fit,
A Spartan firmness, with Athenian wit:
Though yet, in embryo, these perfections shine,
LYCUS! thy father’s fame will soon be thine.
Where Learning nurtures the superior mind,
What may we hope, from genius thus refin’d;
When Time, at length, matures thy growing years,
How wilt thou tower, above thy fellow peers!
Prudence and sense, a spirit bold and free,
With Honour’s soul, united beam in thee.

Shall fair EURYALUS, pass by unsung?
From ancient lineage, not unworthy, sprung:
What, though one sad dissension bade us part,
That name is yet embalm’d within my heart,
Yet, at the mention, does that heart rebound,
And palpitate, responsive to the sound;
Envy dissolved our ties, and not our will:
We once were friends,—I’ll think, we are so still.
A form unmatch’d in Nature’s partial mould,
A heart untainted, we, in thee, behold:
Yet, not the Senate’s thunder thou shall wield,
Nor seek for glory, in the tented field:
To minds of ruder texture, these be given—
Thy soul shall nearer soar its native heaven.
Haply, in polish’d courts might be thy seat,
But, that thy tongue could never forge deceit:
The courtier’s supple bow, and sneering smile,
The flow of compliment, the slippery wile,
Would make that breast, with indignation, burn,
And, all the glittering snares, to tempt thee, spurn.
Domestic happiness will stamp thy fate;
Sacred to love, unclouded e’er by hate;
The world admire thee, and thy friends adore;—
Ambition’s slave, alone, would toil for more.

  Now last, but nearest, of the social band,
See honest, open, generous CLEON stand;
With scarce one speck, to cloud the pleasing scene,
No vice degrades that purest soul serene.
On the same day, our studious race begun,
On the same day, our studious race was run;
Thus, side by side, we pass’d our first career,
Thus, side by side, we strove for many a year:
At last, concluded our scholastic life,
We neither conquer’d in the classic strife:
As Speakers, each supports an equal name,
And crowds allow to both a partial fame:
To soothe a youthful Rival’s early pride,
Though Cleon’s candour would the palm divide,
Yet Candour’s self compels me now to own,
Justice awards it to my Friend alone.

  Oh! Friends regretted, Scenes for ever dear,
Remembrance hails you with her warmest tear!
Drooping, she bends o’er pensive Fancy’s urn,
To trace the hours, which never can return;
Yet, with the retrospection loves to dwell,
And soothe the sorrows of her last farewell!
Yet greets the triumph of my boyish mind,
As infant laurels round my head were twin’d;
When PROBUS’ praise repaid my lyric song,
Or plac’d me higher in the studious throng;
Or when my first harangue receiv’d applause,
His sage instruction the primeval cause,
What gratitude, to him, my soul possest,
While hope of dawning honours fill’d my breast!
For all my humble fame, to him alone,
The praise is due, who made that fame my own.
Oh! could I soar above these feeble lays,
These young effusions of my early days,
To him my Muse her noblest strain would give,
The song might perish, but the theme might live.
Yet, why for him the needless verse essay?
His honour’d name requires no vain display:
By every son of grateful IDA blest,
It finds an ech
lmnsinner Nov 2017
she just shakes her head

she meets me on the street-corner, me from work, she from dance,
in the grayling dusk of a thank god it’s a freedom Friday night,
I greet her with words semi-adventurous -

“come with me, few errands to run, keep me in good company”

to the candy store we go for to purchase my weekend eve
lottery tickets and blow-pop lollipops, just in case some
kids appear, a surprise omen as they come
trick-or-treating just before Thanksgiving


the Bangladeshi candyman calls out a long prayer
in his native Bangla

she asks “what’s that he’s saying?”

“Oh, just wishing us a pleasant Sabbath and
may his gods smile upon our good lottery fortune”

she just shakes her head, from side to side

emerging from the store, walking home in the
now doubly ***** darkly dusk,
a set of white teeth from a passing shadow-man says to me
“you’re home late and have a great weekend,”

she asks, “who is that?”

“why,” I reply, “that is our very own personal postal carrier’

she says:
“he delivers mail to ten thousand people all in tall buildings,
yet knows your name, your face,
where u buy your lottery tickets,
your coming and going hours,
how came that to be”

but waits not for an answer
she just shakes her head, from side to side

I show her my secret entrance to our apartment house,
the fast route to collect our mail, dry cleaning in one fell swoop
a secret door, secret elevator taking us directly to our apartment

a secret elevator which is under the direction of
Bimal from Nepal,
who I greet in Nepalese, (my tutor)
asking after Brian and Bryce, his 100% American boys

now she says nothing, but before our door, as I go key digging,
she just shakes her head, from side to side

later she says:

“let’s order in, apprise me of  your expertise,
some exotic fare from Manhattans First Avenue,
known for its aphrodisiacal powers
afterwards,
you must tell me each dishes name,
in its tongue’s nativity,
but much, much later,”

and as she speaks,
she sticks out her tongue,
while she just shakes her head,
but this time,
up and down!
11/17/18 ~ 11/18/17
Nigel Morgan Apr 2013
As he walked through the maze of streets from the tube station he wondered just how long it had been since he had last visited this tall red-bricked house. For so many years it had been for him a pied à terre. Those years when the care of infant children dominated his days, when coming up to London for 48 hours seemed such a relief, an escape from the daily round that small people demand. Since his first visits twenty years ago the area bristled with new enterprise. An abandoned Victorian hospital had been turned into expensive apartments; small enterprising businesses had taken over what had been residential property of the pre-war years. Looking up he was conscious of imaginative conversions of roof and loft spaces. What had seemed a wide-ranging community of ages and incomes appeared to have disappeared. Only the Middle Eastern corner shops and restaurants gave back to the area something of its former character: a place where people worked and lived.

It was a tall thin house on four floors. Two rooms at most of each floor, but of a good-size. The ground floor was her London workshop, but as always the blinds were down. In fact, he realised, he’d never been invited into her working space. Over the years she’d come to the door a few times, but like many artists and craftspeople he knew, she fiercely guarded her working space. The door to her studio was never left open as he passed through the hallway to climb the three flights of stairs to her husband’s domain. There was never a chance of the barest peek inside.

Today, she was in New York, and from outside the front door he could hear her husband descend from his fourth floor eyrie. The door was flung open and they greeted each other with the fervour of a long absence of friends. It had been a long time, really too long. Their lives had changed inexplicably. One, living almost permanently in that Italian marvel of waterways and sea-reflected light, the other, still in the drab West Yorkshire city from where their first acquaintance had begun from an email correspondence.

They had far too much to say to one another - on a hundred subjects. Of course the current project dominated, but as coffee (and a bowl of figs and mandarin oranges) was arranged, and they had moved almost immediately he arrived in the attic studio to the minimalist kitchen two floors below, questions were thrown out about partners and children, his activities, and sadly, his recent illness (the stairs had seemed much steeper than he remembered and he was a little breathless when he reached the top). As a guest he answered with a brevity that surprised him. Usually he found such questions needed roundabout answers to feel satisfactory - but he was learning to answer more directly, and being brief, suddenly thought of her and her always-direct questions. She wanted to know something, get something straight, so she asked  - straight - with no ‘going about things’ first. He wanted to get on with the business at hand, the business that preoccupied him, almost to the exclusion of everything else, for the last two days.

When they were settled in what was J’s working space ten years ago now he was immediately conscious that although the custom-made furniture had remained the Yamaha MIDI grand piano and the rack of samplers were elsewhere, along with most of the scores and books. The vast collection of CDs was still there, and so too the pictures and photographs. But there was one painting that was new to this attic room, a Cézanne. He was taken aback for a moment because it looked so like the real thing he’d seen in a museum just weeks before. He thought of the film Notting Hill when William Thacker questions the provenance of the Chagall ‘violin-playing goat’. The size of this Cézanne seemed accurate and it was placed in a similar rather ornate frame to what he knew had framed the museum original. It was placed on right-hand wall as he had entered the room, but some way from the pair of windows that ran almost the length of this studio. The view across the rooftops took in the Tower of London, a mile or so distant. If he turned the office chair in which he was sitting just slightly he could see it easily whilst still paying attention to J. The painting’s play of colours and composition compelled him to stare, as if he had never seen the painting before. But he had, and he remembered that his first sight of it had marked his memory.

He had been alone. He had arrived at the gallery just 15 minutes before it was due to close for the day.  He’d been told about this wonderful must-see octagonal room where around the walls you could view a particularly fine and comprehensive collection of Impressionist paintings. All the great artists were represented. One of Van Gogh’s many Olive Trees, two studies of domestic interiors by Vuillard, some dancing Degas, two magnificent Gaugins, a Seurat field of flowers, a Singer-Sergeant portrait, two Monets - one of a pair of haystacks in a blaze of high-summer light. He had been able to stay in that room just 10 minutes before he was politely asked to leave by an overweight attendant, but afterwards it was as if he knew the contents intimately. But of all these treasures it was Les Grands Arbres by Cézanne that had captured his imagination. He was to find it later and inevitably on the Internet and had it printed and pinned to his notice board. He consulted his own book of Cézanne’s letters and discovered it was a late work and one of several of the same scene. This version, it was said, was unfinished. He disagreed. Those unpainted patches he’d interpreted as pools of dappled light, and no expert was going to convince him otherwise! And here it was again. In an attic studio J. only frequented occasionally when necessity brought him to London.

When the coffee and fruit had been consumed it was time to eat more substantially, for he knew they would work late into the night, despite a whole day tomorrow to be given over to their discussions. J. was full of nervous energy and during the walk to a nearby Iraqi restaurant didn’t waver in his flow of conversation about the project. It was as though he knew he must eat, but no longer had the patience to take the kind of necessary break having a meal offered. His guest, his old friend, his now-being-consulted expert and former associate, was beginning to reel from the overload of ‘difficulties’ that were being put before him. In fact, he was already close to suggesting that it would be in J’s interest if, when they returned to the attic studio, they agreed to draw up an agenda for tomorrow so there could be some semblance of order to their discussions. He found himself wishing for her presence at the meal, her calm lovely smile he knew would charm J. out of his focused self and lighten the rush and tension that infused their current dialogue. But she was elsewhere, at home with her children and her own and many preoccupations, though it was easy to imagine how much, at least for a little while, she might enjoy meeting someone new, someone she’d heard much about, someone really rather exotic and (it must be said) commanding and handsome. He would probably charm her as much as he knew she would charm J.

J. was all and more beyond his guest’s thought-description. He had an intensity and a confidence that came from being in company with intense, confident and, it had to be said, very wealthy individuals. His origins, his beginnings his guest and old friend could only guess at, because they’d never discussed it. The time was probably past for such questions. But his guest had his own ideas, he surmised from a chanced remark that his roots were not amongst the affluent. He had been a free-jazz musician from Poland who’d made waves in the German jazz scene and married the daughter of an arts journalist who happened to be the wife of the CEO of a seriously significant media empire. This happy association enabled him to get off the road and devote himself to educating himself as a composer of avant-garde art music - which he desired and which he had achieved. His guest remembered J’s passion for the music of Luigi Nono (curiously, a former resident of the city in which J. now lived) and Helmut Lachenmann, then hardly known in the UK. J. was already composing, and with an infinite slowness and care that his guest marvelled at. He was painstakingly creating intricate and timbrally experimental string quartets as well as devising music for theatre and experimental film. But over the past fifteen years J. had become increasingly more obsessed with devising software from which his musical ideas might emanate. And it had been to his guest that, all that time ago, J. had turned to find a generous guide into this world of algorithms and complex mathematics, a composer himself who had already been seduced by the promise of new musical fields of possibility that desktop computer technology offered.

In so many ways, when it came to the hard edge of devising solutions to the digital generation of music, J. was now leagues ahead of his former tutor, whose skills in this area were once in the ascendant but had declined in inverse proportion to J’s, as he wished to spend more time composing and less time investigating the means through which he might compose. So the guest was acting now as a kind of Devil’s Advocate, able to ask those awkward disarming questions creative people don’t wish to hear too loudly and too often.

And so it turned out during the next few hours as J. got out some expensive cigars and brandy, which his guest, inhabiting a different body seemingly, now declined in favour of bottled water and dry biscuits. His guest, who had been up since 5.0am, finally suggested that, if he was to be any use on the morrow, bed was necessary. But when he got in amongst the Egyptian cotton sheets and the goose down duvet, sleep was impossible. He tried thinking of her, their last walk together by the sea, breakfast à deux before he left, other things that seemed beautiful and tender by turn . . . But it was no good. He wouldn’t sleep.

The house could have been as silent as the excellent double-glazing allowed. Only the windows of the attic studio next door to his bedroom were open to the night, to clear the room of the smoke of several cigars. He was conscious of that continuous flow of traffic and machine noise that he knew would only subside for a brief hour or so around 4.0am. So he went into the studio and pulled up a chair in front of the painting by Cézanne, in front of this painting of a woodland scene. There were two intertwining arboreal forms, trees of course, but their trunks and branches appeared to suggest the kind of cubist shapes he recognized from Braque. These two forms pulled the viewer towards a single slim and more distant tree backlit by sunlight of a late afternoon. There was a suggestion, in the further distance, of the shapes of the hills and mountains that had so preoccupied the artist. But in the foreground, there on the floor of this woodland glade, were all the colours of autumn set against the still greens of summer. It seemed wholly wrong, yet wholly right. It was as comforting and restful a painting as he could ever remember viewing. Even if he shut his eyes he could wander about the picture in sheer delight. And now he focused on the play of brush strokes of this painting in oils, the way the edge and border of one colour touched against another. Surprisingly, imagined sounds of this woodland scene entered his reverie - a late afternoon in a late summer not yet autumn. He was Olivier Messiaen en vacances with his perpetual notebook recording the magical birdsong in this luminous place. Here, even in this reproduction, lay the joy of entering into a painting. Jeanette Winterson’s plea to look at length at paintings, and then look again passed through his thoughts. How right that seemed. How very difficult to achieve. But that night he sat comfortably in J’s attic and let Cézanne deliver the artist’s promise of a world beyond nature, a world that is not about constant change and tension, but rests in a stillness all its own.
Jack Turner Oct 2013
I got my dancing shoes back on again today.
**** did it feel good!
I also got back into the rhythm and began tutoring for the beginner level class.
I can't believe that I would really miss that, but I did.

My excitement for dancing has been relit,
And the chance to pass that onto yet another class has me smiling.
A new class and a new semester of opportunities,
With growth and learning available to both the students as well as me.
It's such a great feeling to help them succeed,
As well as helping them progress, especially when they thought they were beyond saving.

Dance is a passion which burns within me.
I can't describe how good it feels to be back,
Adding fuel to the flame which burns in me so brightly,
Adding fuel to a flame
That I almost let get extinguished.
Trevor Gates Jul 2013
The Obsidian Theater XV.



Welcome to my nightmare
Welcome to my show
The audience awaits your praise
And your stage light glow

My, my, it’s been too long.

[Walks across stage; light follows. Curtains pulled]

Where have all of you been?

[Audience laughter]

Oh, forgive me, that’s not the right question
To ask

Where have we been?

That’s more fitting


Where


Sipping Champagne with Bing Crosby among undead poets
With a casket made for two
“Brother can you spare a dime?”
He said,
“Lift me from this tribal paradigm.”

And

For many days I wandered the wilderness in the threads of
My carnivalesque grandfather
Ripping and tearing in the clinging trees
Hands of branches
Groping and pulling the garments off my body

In the middle of the Serbian wilderness was The Manor
Draped in dead trees and blackened ice

The valet stood at the gate in prime condition
Waiting

But for who?

“Why, you sir.” He told me, guiding me through the entrance, to the front door.

And inside were wonders to be held by the
muster of my weakened eyes

Ladybug dancers tossing their legs up to *****-tonk fanfare
Swirling magicians pulling rabbits and naked men from the shadows

Allegorical usurpers coated in a filmy residue of
Herzog dreams
And
Lynch fantasies

Perpetuated by my longing
My lost soul
My parched thirst
My growling stomach
My throbbing manhood
My forgotten affliction
And severed diction

A man slivering into the skin of a woman
A Lady donning the cowl of a man

Skins shivering with afterglow effects

And dreams woven by old witches with intestinal thread

It was eloquent darkness in the belly of the manor
Fit for a King of Devilish glamor

Brothers of Grimm
And
Sisters of Mercy

Told from the pages

From the books

Of frozen Gods
And forgotten Titans

These are the happenings of a great story
Fiction or not
You may tell it
And believe what you will

It doesn’t matter as long as it is strongly retold

From the lips of another

The wandering bard
Or
The pub crawling drunkard
To
The enamored *****
And
Bookworm report
It needs
To be shared
To others
Even impaired
To celebrate
Gasp
Giggle
Scare
Love
Soothe
Disrupt

My impeccable, capable
Hands-down sensational
Tour de force
Troupe
A la mode


Cherries on top of whipped screams and drinks
Juggling heads and animals over coals of fire
Give them a show
Give them a feat
Give them something to remember
Give them something to crawl back to
Give them a performance that will beckon the applause
For years to come
Show your audience
And readers love
And
Sorrow
The likes of which
Cannot be equaled
Or even compared to
Lesser
Congregations
Of silly-billy pud muffins
And their
Street-smart guff

Let the institution of your mind become a corporal being
Teasing and pleasing those eager and waiting eyes
Staring up at you with
Wanting
Drooling
Wanting
Begging
Wanting
Affections

Don’t you want to see a show worth seeing?

[Audience cheers; laughs and applauds]

Watch a movie worth seeing?

Read a book worth reading?

How do you come by this?

Create what you’ve always wanted to see, read, watch and say.

Those performers
Once peasants and beggars

Stood up from the grime and ridicule of the trash and rose above the
Plateau
To conquer their hearts

Look and see!

Those people balancing and singing with fluffy dogs
Magicians and warlocks summoning spirits to dance among stars
Poets on stage reading mixed words to nodding peers
Directors blocking actors on stage with unparalleled enthusiasm
All these creatures of the ubiquitous night
Gather and produce
The whim of their lives

But many of these masters
These

Unknowing

Are

The bus boys cleaning up after your meal
The mother alone at home with the kids
The unsociable man on the park bench
The frigid girl in the corner of the classroom
The nervous boy wandering the circus
The stern librarian in Brooklyn
The blogger in the studio apartment
The hard working abroad student on a farm
The homeless man cradling a dying dog
The celebrity chasing photographer
The undergraduate tutor
The ignored substitute teacher
The bullied Muslim student
The underprivileged south side coach
The Turkish cab driver


More and more

These warrior poets and victims to racial slurs
Commonwealth bigotry
Ghetto endorsements
Faulty criticisms

From hosting countries

And sheltered, over-privileged, disillusioned

Politicians

Bureaucrats

Religious figures

Dogs of War

Angels of retribution

Demons of industry

Ghosts of the hours and days past
To sympathize and cry for the world
Thrown into invisible and subtle chaos
Like an ocean littered with the blades of
Broken glass
The sludge toxic waste mixed in molten lava over craters of dead bodies
Or
The sand dust covering the thousands of bodies in the earth

So



What teams won the World Series?
Which movie star dates who?
What’s the latest trending diet?
What new pop sensation has been manufactured?
What new insult can talk show hosts say?
Is there someone new to blame for all the bad things in the world?

What are the things the media has told you?
And
The things it hasn’t?

It’s a
Bitter sweet symphony

A
Crucible for the faceless grins
Pointing fingers everywhere but themselves


Let’s leave the worries to our kids
I’m sure they’ll figure it out.
Allow me to thank my esteemed colleagues: Meryl Streep’s skeleton, Freddie Mercury’s ghost, Doc Hammer, George C. Scott, Doctor Emmett Brown, Marty McFly, Easter Eggs, internet message board administrators, Robert Redford, Aviator sunglasses, Don Cheadle, The Coen Brothers, the Dukes of Hazzard, Billy *** Thorton, Hammerfall, Saxon, Klaxons, Lou Reed, Spike Jonze, Michael Gondry, Guts, Son Goku, Tinkerball ***** force, the Die Nasties, The Iron Maidens, Judas Priestess, The Runaways
And many more I simply don’t have time to mention.

Now Get out of my theater.
Nigel Morgan Aug 2013
It’s nearly two in the morning and the place is finally quiet. I can’t do early mornings like I reckon he does. Even a half-past nine start is difficult for me. So it has be this way round. I called Mum tonight and she was her wonderful, always supportive self, but I hear through the ‘you’ve done so well to get on this course’ stuff and imagine her at her desk working late with a pile of papers waiting to be considered for Chemistry Now, the journal she edits. I love her study and one day I shall have one myself, but with a piano and scores and recordings on floor to ceiling shelves . . . and poetry and art books. I have to have these he said when, as my tutorial came to a close, he apologised for not being able to lend me a book of poems he’d thought of. He had so many books and scores piled on the floor, his bed and on his table. He must have filled his car with them. And we talked about the necessity of reading and how words can form music. Pilar, she’s from Tel Haviv, was with me and I could tell she questioned this poetry business – he won’t meet with any of us on our own, all this fall out from the Michel Brewer business I suppose.

This idea that music is a poetic art seems exactly right to me. Nobody had ever pointed this out before. He said, ask yourself what books and scores would be on the shelves of a composer you love. Go on, choose a composer and imagine. Another fruitless exercise, whispered Pilar, who has been my shadow all week. I thought of Messiaen whose music has finally got to me – it was hearing that piece La Columbe. He asked Joanna MacGregor to play it for us. I was knocked sideways by this music, and what’s more it’s been there in my head ever since. I just wanted to get my hands on it. Those final two chords . . . So, thinking of Messiaen’s library I thought of the titles of his music that I’d come across. Field Guides to birds of course, lots of theology, Shakespeare (his father translated the Bard), the poetry and plays of the symbolists (I learnt this week that he’d been given the score of Debussy’s Pelleas and Melisande for his twelfth birthday) . . . Yes, that library thing was a good exercise, a mind-expanding exercise. When I think of my books and the scores I own I’m ashamed . . . the last book I read? I tried to read something edifying on my Kindle on the train down, but gave up and read Will Self instead. I don’t know when I last read a score other than my own.

I discovered he was a poet. There’s an eBook collection mentioned on his website. Words for Music. Rather sweet to have a relative (wife / sister?)  as a collaborator. I downloaded it from Amazon and thought her poems were very straight and to the point. No mystery or abstraction, just plain words that sounded well together. His poetry mind you was a little different. Softer, gentler like he is.  In class he doesn’t say much, but if you question him on his own you inevitably get more than the answer you expect.  

There was this poem he’d set for chamber choir. It reads like captions for a series of photographs. It’s about a landscape, a walk in a winter landscape, a kind of secular stations of the cross, and it seems so very intimate, specially the last stanza.

Having climbed over
The plantation wall
Your freckled face
Pale with the touch
Of cold fingers
In the damp silence
Listening to each other breathe
The mist returns


He’s living in one of the estate houses, the last one in a row of six. It’s empty but for one bedroom which he’s turned into a study. I suppose he uses the kitchen and there’s probably a bedroom where he keeps his cases and clothes. In his study there is just a bed, a large table with a portable drawing board, a chair, a radio/CD, his guitar and there’s a notice board. He got out a couple of folding chairs for Pilar and I and pulled them up to the table.

Pilar said later his table and notice board were like a map of himself. It contained all these things that speak about who he is, this composer who is not in the textbooks and you can’t buy on CD. He didn’t give us the 4-page CV we got from our previous tutor. There was his blue, spiral-bound notebook, with its daily chord, a bunch of letters, books of course, pens and pencils, sheets of graph and manuscript paper filled with writing and drawings and music in different inks. There was a CD of the Hindemith Viola Sonatas and a box set of George Benjamin’s latest opera and some miniature scores – mostly Bach. A small vase of flowers was perilously placed at a corner . . . and pinned to his notice board, a blue origami bird.

But it was the photographs that fascinated me, some in small frames, others on his notice board, the board resting on the table and against the wall. There were black and white photos of small children, a mix of boys and girls, colour shots of seascapes and landscapes, a curious group of what appeared to be marks in the sand. There was a tiny white-washed cottage, and several of the same young woman. She is quite compelling to look at. She wears glasses, has very curly hair and a nice figure. She looks quiet and gentle too. In one photo she’s standing on a pebbly beach in a dress and black footless tights – I have a feeling it’s Aldeburgh. There’s a portrait too, a very close-up. She’s wearing a blue scarf round her hair. She has freckles, so then I knew she was probably the person in the poem . . .

I’ve thought of Joel a little this week, usually when I finally get to bed.  I shut my eyes and think of him kissing me after we’d been out to lunch before he left for Canada. We’d experimented a little, being intimate that is, but for me I’m not ready for all that just now; nice to be close to someone though, someone who struggles with being in a group as I do. I prefer the company of one, and for here Pilar will do, although she’s keen on the Norwegian, Jesper.

Today it was all about Pitch. To our surprise the session started with a really tough analysis of a duo by Elliott Carter, who taught here in the 1960s. He had brought all these sketches, from the Paul Sacher Archive, pages of them, all these rows and abstracts and workings out, then different attempts to write to the same section. You know, I’d never seen a composer’s workings out before. My teacher at uni had no time for what she called the value of process (what he calls poiesis). It was the finished piece that mattered, how you got there was irrelevant and entirely your business and no one else’s. So I had plenty of criticism but no help with process. It seems like this pre-composition, the preparing to compose is just so necessary, so important. Music is not, he said, radio in the head. You can’t just turn it on at will. You have to go out and find it, detect it, piece it together. It’s there, and you’ll know it when you find it.

So it’s really difficult now sitting here with the beginnings of a composition in front of me not to think about what was revealed today, and want to try it myself. And here was a composer who was willing to share what he did, what he knew others did, and was able to show us how it mattered. Those sheets on his desk – I realise now they were his pre-composition, part of the process, this building up of knowledge about the music you were going to write, only you had to find it first.

The analysis he put together of Carter’s Fantasy Duo was like nothing I’d experienced before because it was not sitting back and taking it, it was doing it. It became ours, and if you weren’t on your toes you’d look such a fool. Everything was done at breakneck speed. We had to sing all the material as it appeared on the board. He got us to pre-empt Carter’s own workings, speculate on how a passage might be formed. I realised that a piece could just go so many different ways, and Carter would, almost by a process of elimination choose one, stick to it, and then, as the process moved on, reject it! Then, the guys from the Composers Ensemble played it, and because we’d been so involved for nearly an hour in all this pre-composition, the experience of listening was like eating newly-baked bread.  There was a taste to it.

After the break we had to make our own duos for flute and clarinet with a four note series derived from the divisions of a tritone. It wasn’t so much a theme but a series of pitch objects and we relentlessly brainstormed its possibilities. We did all the usual things, but it was when we started to look beyond inversion and transposition. There is all this stuff from mathematical and symbolic formulas that I could see at last how compelling such working out, such investigation could be . . . and we’re only dealing with pitch! I loved the story he told about Alexander Goehr and his landlady’s piano, all this insistence on the internalizing of things, on the power of patterns (and unpatterns), and the benefit and value of musical memory, which he reckoned so many of us had already denied by only using computer systems to compose.

Keep the pen moving on the page, he said; don’t let your thoughts come to a standstill. If there isn’t a note there may be a word or even an object, a sketch, but do something. The time for dreaming or contemplation is when you are walking, washing up, cleaning the house, gardening. Walk the garden, go look at the river, and let the mind play. But at your desk you should work, and work means writing even though what you do may end in the bin. You will have something to show for all that thought and invention, that intense listening and imagining.
My woe, on this cold summer’s eve’ begins,

It is a story about how my light gets dim,

My nightmare, my foe
dims my light and begins my tales of woe..

He walks into my room after he is left my needs to cater,
my smile gets bigger, my eyes brighter,
for there’s a chocolate in his hand, it makes my mouth water,
I scramble from my bed,
run into his arms
wit nothing but ‘mars’ running through my mind
sure he knows with that my homework gets done in a twitch,
with which
even math, comprehensively my tutor will teach
and this I’d rather eat
than find I, building a sand castle on a beautiful beach.

He’s cunning, He’s witty, he’s crafty,
He says you’ve been naughty
Naughty?
I cried, no! that can’t be!
I’ve cleaned my cuttina,
I’ve washed my socks,
I’ve done my homework and my chores,
How could I av bin naughty?
I queried, as my lips grew pouty.
Nonetheless, this monster is haughty
Moreover, my mood makes him happy.

Suddenly he grabs me and says,
Kiss me on my lips
and it’s all yours to nibble and eat,
I shudder and begin to retreat,
then he calls and coaxes
He breaks into an evil smile
Revealing his teeth like axes,
I get frantic and am about to squeal
Wen he says: Hey! I was just kidding!
Here’s your chocolate, eat and get some sleep!
I mumble my gratitude as my body relaxes
With my treasure in my hand, I get ecstatic.

He leaves the room, without my notice,
only to creep back in, when sweetly I sleep,
peacefully and innocently without defenses.

He leaves the room, without my notice,
only to creep back in, when sweetly I sleep,
peacefully and innocently without defenses.

He climbs into my bed and begins to touch,
wit his hands strong and rough,
he raises my dress,
I flinch, as on my thighs his enormous hands rest,
prepared this tiny frame to soil,
His heartbeat fast against his chest
sets his blood to boil,
His built and domineering figure
upon my tiny frame falls
I wake abruptly
I wail out helplessly to an empty house,
I scream, till my voice I lose,
I struggle, I fight, I kick as his lips he licks
and crushes my pretty ones
In a violent kiss.

Our dogs howl,
My cat meows,
the wind violently blows
in an attempt to carry out my plea to an empty street,
where I live and this monster’s deaf ears fall ma desperate plea

c’mon! don’t be a spoilt sport!
he blurts,
it’s going to be al pleasure.
just but a lil’ hurt
I cried, I pleaded, I cursed.
I closed ma eyes and in agony, I wrothe
right at the time, a rose withers and falls to the ground
only to be trampled upon unnoticed by the soldier whose boots this has crushed,
just as this hurt became intense, my ordeal begins,
uncertainties unfurl
helplessly at the corner of my bed I curl,
as slowly my feelings get numb
and to those hurtful words my ears deaf turn.

-r3d-
Amanda Mary Rose Mar 2010
I am ravishing/ I’m awkward
I am desired/ I usually do the desiring
I’m pretty wonderful/ Some would say I am damaged goods
What else could you want in a female human?/ Not all you could want in a female human

Let’s be honest/ Let’s be honest
I am trim with some curves/I am not in stellar shape
I have freckled green eyes/I have wild eyebrows
Thick soft hair/Short-cropped hair
I’ve heard I smell great/Often I reek of the pool
Like a rich thick bouquet of flowers and soft earth/Like chlorine and hot damp air

I don't have a horrible sense of style/ I rarely ever match
I recycle/I have a messy dorm
I have a great sense of humor/I can be too loud
And will willingly watch any guy movie at least once/And I’m hooked on musicals
Quoting along the way/Quoting is a ridiculous habit of mine

I love to curse/ I can be crass
I don’t mind smoking, drinking, /I drink a lot and like that
All for typical male insanity/Sometimes I am a ****-joy

I’m warm/ I get too hot
Usually soft/My skin is really dry
And I care/ And I care
A lot/A lot
I care a lot/I care too much

About everything/About everything
You/You
Me/Me
Your grade in chemistry/Us

Ill tutor you,/ Ill tutor you
Console you/ Hang around
Advise you/ Pry into your life
Hold you/Even if you are against it
Comfort you/Pry into your life

So why/This is why
overwhelming amount of contradictions
Danny Mar 2013
Brackets

Your mum picked you up in daddy’s BMW,
we had to wait an hour while they scrubbed the brains of another son off the roof of the 125

(Why they built a multi storey car park on top of the bus station is a mystery to me.)

You carefully colour coordinated your files and scrutinized your revision schedules,
we watched nicked CCTV footage of two blokes smoking crack and burning down the bowling pavilion next door

(the old boys never did raise enough to repair it.)

You snubbed each other because of different tastes in jumpers,
we watched acid casualties talk politics with football hooligans

(a hastily rolled joint bridged the obvious gap.)

You lounged in the common room in your study periods,
our lesson got cancelled because John had been smashed in the face with a fire extinguisher

(and our tutor used to be a lifeguard.)

You worried about fashion and discussed the injustice of last night’s X Factor result,
we watched Neil’s head crash into his keyboard after he’d scoffed all his methadone in one go

(again.)
Mars Arocena Apr 2015
I specifically remember being told that I can’t prosper without picking myself up after failure.
As a four year old incapable of coloring inside the lines I thought they had been talking about the array of scribbles and mismatched shades in my coloring book.
By the time I turned ten I began to think they had meant my first F on the homework assignment I couldn’t make sense of.
Then when I was thirteen and tripped in front of the cute boy in my Algebra class I thought the two could link together hoping I still had a chance,
but at fifteen and chewing on the eraser end of a mechanical pencil despite the orthodontist telling me I’d ruin my braces and the tutor across the desk thumbing through my failed fall exam trying to see where it had all went wrong, I concluded that education was the failure I were to bounce back from.
But I was eighteen and moving into the dorm of a college I had reluctantly listed as my “safe” school because my advisor told me to be safe and safe didn’t seem so bad with my GPA so I told myself I could succeed with a well-paying career.
Years later as a twenty five year old and employed with the third job I swore would work and living in the apartment with broken blinds and stained carpet along with the man that gave me a shiny ring promising forever I could still remember the F on that homework assignment fifteen years ago.
When we got married I was twenty seven and I broke a plate at our wedding when I felt suffocated by the lace white dress that I later decided to trash but not the plate for its “sentimental value” and ability to remind me when we had our first kid to whisper the words of defeat and inevitable glory even though I never fixed the plate nor did I try to and it just sat there and I’m not sure why it sat there but
I was forty one and divorced when I picked it out of a box mentally flashed with the expression on my tutor’s face figuring out where it all went wrong and why I couldn’t figure out where it all went wrong. It was an endless string of questions from “I wonder what wasteland my coloring book is rotting away in” to “what the hell was the cute boy from Algebra’s name” wandering to “why didn’t I ever glue that ******* plate together” and these tears fell that I swear were the shape of question marks.
Later my daughter was eighteen with a 3.9 GPA and at her graduation I saw the man that gave me the shiny ring ignorant to the meaning of forever and I couldn’t tell anyone I only had a year to live but I did tell my daughter I loved her everyday even if it were in my head as the year passed.
I was forty six the day I fainted in my kitchen and there was cheap superglue stuck in my nails and one more discarded piece that would have completed the broken plate that wasn’t so broken anymore even when I felt broken myself and my daughter wasn’t in her “safe” school and the one man I loved was remarried with a step son who tutored kids that failed their exams which made it seem like a beautiful day. It may not look like it, but I did prosper and I did pick myself up after my failures, to the sun I colored purple to my first F to the broken bracket in my braces to my sucky GPA.

However, I did remain unprosperous from this unfinished broken plate. That, itself, strangely remained my biggest failure.

-Mars S.
a story of triumph without glory
Larry Potter May 2017
The comfiest human bed warmer I ever had,
My fundamental tutor of the good and the bad,
The original storyteller in my bedtime tantrums,
The resident photographer of my birthday albums.

The accidental magician who tricked me out of my worries,
A sympathetic dictator who scolds but allows my fancies,
My biased talent manager who always tells me I'm the best,
The loudest cheerleader who puts to shame all the rest.

The world's underrated chef cooking heavenly meals,
Our unpaid laundry lady worrying over water bills,
The overqualified nurse never leaving her patient,
Our top-notch budget analyst negotiating every payment.

The random gardener, she can grow anything with ease,
Our talkative historian, she stops recalling only if we say please,
The uncanny philosopher, we've learned a lot from her,
The lost and found administrator, tracking things hidden anywhere.

The most efficient multitasker I've ever known,
My trustworthy adviser who knows me down to my bones,
A tough fighter who keeps winning her every battle,
My life's co-creator and this world's greatest mother.
Happy Mother's Day!
Gabriel K Sep 2015
So this ****
mother of two
with the lived-in form
luxurious lips
took a drink
***** Martini
occasional sips
let me gaze at her
long as I listened to long stories
about her boys
8, 6.
Some point she give me her number
07980 314213
which I treasure
preserve for safety
in the breast-pocket next to my heart.
A day
or is it a week
later
I text
her
>****!
09.43
December 13
with a view some vanilla kinna ***
I guess
love & marriage
death,
that's the goal.
She's okay about it the text
but what I get
I end up tutor
to her problem child
Archie
he's ADD
emotionally-damaged
or lazy
he's something
they say.
So I'm sitting in her kitchen
putting time in
way of Harry Potter reading
creative writing
spelling tests
but not getting so much out
romantically;
the beautiful mother of two
33
in faux-fur
white jeans
calfskin boots
makes lavender tea
while I'm marking punctuation exercises
that's the basis of the deal.
As she stretches
leans
in the Poggenpohl kitchen
my mind drifts onto wild domestic fantasies
programming the oven
strapping on a toolbelt
cuddling on the sofa over a DVD.
When I break my reverie
the 8 year old is staring me out
aggressively
he has other ideas what a mother's about.
© Gabriel K
NitaAnn Nov 2013
You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit.

Like it or lump it.

The only constant is change.

Stop crying or I’ll give you something to cry about!

Life isn’t fair!

If life gives you lemons…make lemonade.

I feel trapped. Trapped in this life I don’t want to be in, trapped inside my head, inside this messed up, used up body. Trapped by the conflicting voices that argue and debate constantly…never a minute of peace and quiet! Trapped!!!

I continue to live inside this chaotic crazy world of confusion and I don’t know which way is up anymore. I cancel appointments, I lash out at DT, tell him he isn't helping me and I hate him. I dissociate, to **** the pain, I abuse the drugs that have been prescribed, SI to try to get the bad out of me, I don’t sleep, most weekends I don’t even have the energy to go out of the house…but none of it matters….because “it’s all part of the process”…perhaps DT could provide me with a bullet point of the ‘process’ so I can see where I am now, and how many more bullet points there are to go…so I’ll have all the evidence and be able to make an ‘informed’ decision of whether I have the stamina to do it. Isn’t that part of the ‘discovery’ process?

Nothing gets processed, it never gets better. I don’t think I even understand the concept anymore. I mean I’ve read so much about it…treatment approaches; behavioral, psychodynamic, cognitive, eclectic, holistic, existential, person focused, CBT, DBT, and more! I’ve researched and studied trauma symptoms and what to expect, how to handle them. I’ve read about the long-term effects of childhood abuse…the fear of abandonment, inability to trust or feel safe, inability to self-soothe or regulate emotions, depression, anxiety, eating disorders, self injury, suicide ideation, the tendency to ‘repeat the trauma’.… oh, I “understand” it well, from an educational perspective. I have good insight. I can explain it to someone else…but emotionally, and physically…personally, I don’t comprehend it, I can’t apply it to me. It’s all just words, I have no personal connection to them. Just like the terms: mom, dad, safety, trust, intimacy…all words in a dictionary. I understand them, I know the ‘meaning’ of the words but I have no real human connection to them, they have no personal meaning to me. Like reading a physics book…all words and terms and models and notions and things…I sit and observe externally, but none of it is part of my internal world.

That’s my problem right now…(well, one of) is no one listens! *NO ONE HEARS ME!!!
Everyone just shoves information at me – techniques, tools, lists, print outs, videos, cds, diary cards, words…and I see them, and hell, I’m pretty sure I could teach them all to anyone with an IQ over 50 – but how does it relate to me, to my life? The stupid exercises in DBT…”practice them” go to class, talk about them…
DBTC says, *“Don’t you feel better/happier/distracted/grounded/soothed now?”
And I just pause and take an internal inventory and say, “NO!” I don’t because it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to do.
“Oh, well, then you must be doing something WRONG. You are a failure – you aren’t trying hard enough.” Yes, it’s my entire fault. I will try harder. And I try harder, and it doesn’t work, and then I become more frustrated, like a 1 year old trying to fit a round toy into a square hole. It doesn’t fit! And I try it over and over and over, and it still doesn’t fit. And I become more and more frustrated and feel more and more worthless and stupid…and no one listens because it’s my fault. I’m not trying hard enough! I should be able to do this! I should be able to ‘soothe’ myself and ‘ground’ myself and ‘feel safe’ and make him go away when he comes to me at night, and be happy when I’m sad…and pretend, pretend, pretend, fake it. Shut up and behave yourself, young lady, so everyone can see how much better you're doing...another DBT success story!

Nothing is shifting and I’m still stuck. Read it, live it, apply it, love it! I read the material like it’s a prerequisite class in college. I study it, I learn it, I recite it, I ace the exam, I can tutor others on the material…but like finite math – I’ll never use it, I don’t apply it in my own life. I don’t incorporate it on a personal level – it’s just a class I have to pass to graduate.

Nothing is stable, nothing is safe, there’s nowhere to turn, no one to turn too. There’s no one here – no one listens – no one cares about what I say is working or isn’t working. The echoes of my screams just resonate through the cavernous canyon. I look around for the Verizon network and there’s nothing – no one. No one HEARS ME! DT used to hear me, but not anymore because now you don’t have time. “Sure I do,” says Dear Therapist, “I have a whole hour.” And you can call me until 10pm each and every night, if you need too, and if I’m available and not (enter: in session,  at the hospital working, running…or just plain not wanting to answer the phone) I will listen. In other words, if everything else falls through, then 'maybe'. Gee, I should jump on that.

Truly, I should take it, run with it, put it in the blender with some water, and make lemonade for EVERYONE!

Yes, my world today is so much different now than it was then. The only difference is the scenery.

Everything is still there: the fear, the lack of trust, the lack of safety, the ED, the SI, SIB, the pieces of me, the unfamiliar woman in the mirror looking back at me.

There's no where to run to… no where to hide....from myself. That's what it comes down to in the end, I can't hide from myself, and I can't seem to help myself either.
Mymai Yuan Sep 2010
I was born a sickly, screeching baby, two months earlier than expected. The doctor and midwife did everything they could to keep my little limbs moving and to keep my tiny heart beating, fluttering like the wings of butterfly.
“Is it a boy?” my mother whispered through her pale lips, as they bathed my naked body in hot water.
“No, ma’am, it’s a girl” The midwife struggled to add on something that would make the wailing creature seem more desirable. “With exquisitely shaped feet, so perfectly miniature”
She let out a croak of conflicting emotions: the joy and pride of a newly-founded motherly love, the fear of presenting a girl as a first-born, the relief that the hours of agony in childbirth were over and the dread of facing her husband once he found out about me.

My mother was not healthy after my birth for a long time; and when I was only one and two months old she fell dangerously ill, and the house whispered footsteps running to her room late at night and muffled voices of different doctors. Mercifully, she survived but was left barren and forever unfertile.
I can not imagine my father’s fury. He believed in having sons to carry on his old last name of thirty-one generations; it was his religion and had I been a son, I would have been worshipped as a god. I can imagine how my mother prayed and thanked her ancestors that her dowry was of a large one.

He could barely tolerate being in the same room as me during my toddler years. Every time he entered a room I was playing in, nurse would sweep me to our garden out side; answering to my startled queries, “Be an obedient daughter, don’t bother your father and don’t ask questions”
My body had been born frail, but my natural spirit was as healthy as could be, full of inquiries, wonders of the world around me and everyday I would learn something new just wandering around the neighborhood observing things, with my nurse trailing with a worried eye behind me muttering, “Girls are not supposed to be exposed to this” she spoke the words as if they were sour, “you should be sitting at home and accompanying your mother.”

Every day at dinner, the two females of the house, me and my mother, were silent while my father ranted on and on. My appetite being very delicate, I often just sat there as still as I possibly could and listened to my father talking about politics, jobs, money. Things he called ‘men business’. I longed to ask questions about these ‘men business’, especially ‘university’ for I had an inquisitive sort-of nature but was refrained with a sharp, piercing look from my mother every time I opened my mouth and sometimes, she pinched me under the table leaving purple splotches which flashed, “Don’t question your father”
Sometimes, he would talk about the future he had decided for me, “You will marry off, sixteen at the latest, to some one rich and beneficial to our family. You will do as I say till I marry you off, and then you will do as your husband tells you.”
“Yes father, for I should repay everything you have done for me” I replied as sweetly as I could.
“Yes, you’re a good daughter. Bear lots of sons for him and your house will be one of happiness.”
I was proud that he had given me a compliment. “Yes father, for it will make you joyful as I always wish to make you so”
My childish heart did not understand why my mother turned her head down while her left eyebrow twitched, and why that night, as she tucked me into bed, I thought I saw a tear roll down her cheek and why as she kissed me that night she whispered, “Do not love me so; love your father. The men in your life are your gods.”

My physical health would constantly limit the desires of my free spirit. I could not to do what others who were as free of spirit as I was could do, and couldn’t socialize with them and the rest of the children in my neighborhood had their siblings to mingle with, causing me to become the pitiful outcast.
I saw children around my age, around seven or eight, climbing trees and wanted to do so as well, but my white feet did not have grip enough to grasp onto the fat branches.
Father caught me once trying to propel myself up a tree and his expression was both of a resigned anger and sadness before he turned him and his face away and back into the house without a word.
That night, mother told me not to climb trees ever again. I noticed a faint bruise on her cheek bone that had been covered with white powder.

When I was eleven or twelve, and was allowed to wander further out into the neighborhood with my nurse I saw the boys fishing in the nearby pond and wanted to do so as well. Starting that day, every week I pocketed the three coins mother gave me until I could buy the best fishing rod in the little store and ran as fast as my skinny, weak legs could carry me to the pond. I mimicked the way the boys flung the fishing rod out over the water but the metal pole was too heavy for my pale, shaking arms. I tried over and over again as my nurse watched, biting her lip in anxiety. I held the fishing rod with trembling sore arms till  I felt a bite; I pumped my small arms to reel it in, but they were so tired and I was far too slow, losing the fish I had spent half the day trying to catch. “Ah, just bad luck, don’t worry! It was a smart fish, I tell you!” nurse exclaimed, though her eyes flashed a look of pity and I knew she knew it wasn’t just bad luck or a smart fish.
In anger, I sold the fishing rod to one of the boys for two-thirds of the price I had bought it for. He was delighted with the bargain and I watched with a lump in my throat as he caught three fish with the tug of his healthy, muscular arm within fifteen minutes. “This is a beautiful rod, and the pond is just filled with fish today, Little Sister!”
Wanting to spend the money jingling inside my pocket, money that to me was just a reminder of a painful memory, I headed off to the collection of little shops close to my house where I was guaranteed distraction. Nurse, sweating and complaining of the heat, followed me.
An ageing man with a bunch of filthy hair working away on a piece of thick, rough paper with wondrous colors inside a shop caught my eye as I peered inside the window. He turned the picture upside down and continued blending in the dark colors of the shape to create a shadow along the curve of it. I entered the shop. “What is that?” I asked of him.
“A face” he replied back absentmindedly.
“Doesn’t look like one to me” I confessed with my honesty.
He looked up at me, “No, it does not to you, and maybe, neither will it at the end. To me, it looks like an angle of a faded face. But slowly, with time, it will become clearer and clearer, yet only to me, and as it does, I will be able to choose more colors to make it yet more beautiful. The outcome of this painting is entirely up to me.”
I felt my challenging self rising up. “But what if you imagined a certain color in your head but couldn’t find it or be able to mix it to your mind’s perfection?”
“Then I would create my own paint color.”
“You know how?”
“No, but if I could not find the paint color already made I would make it myself, and no matter what, would learn how to. So far I have always been able to compromise and mix different colors to please me.”
“You do an awful lot of shadowing light colors with dark colors”
“Why do you think I do so?” he questioned me this time, with bright eyes.
I pondered for a moment to give as good an answer as he had given me and then told him my answer.
He nodded with impress, “Yes, yes, absolutely right. I never thought I’d hear that from a child” and looked at me with his head cocked in curiosity.
“What would you like to buy from here, Little Sister?”
Still deeply interested in our conversation I pulled out the coins I had in my pocket. “How much stuff can I buy with all this money? I’d like those crayons, I’ve tried them once before and they are so creamy and smooth.”
“Oil pastels?” he asked, a little confusedly.
Feeling ashamed of my ignorance, I nodded. The tutor father hired evidently bent to father’s strict rules of what should be taught and what would not be taught. Father disapproved of women painting, and would’ve dismissed nurse had he known that instead of taking me out for a little walk to smell the blooming daffodils, she in fact let me explore the environment around me to the best of my ability even in disgruntle.
The man gave my red-patched cheeks and undeveloped translucent frame a sympathetic look and when he spoke, his voice was gentle. “Little Sister, I’ve a whole basket of oil paints that I’ve used but rarely and so are still in perfect condition. Would you like to carry the whole basket home for all the money you have in your pockets?”
I handed him all my golden coins, “But first I must see if I like it.”
“You won’t be disappointed” he chuckled and walked with an imbalanced limp to the back of the store. I noticed a wooden stump protruding from the bottom of his long, black pants. My heart throbbed achingly; he was ****** limited too. I turned to his painting and smiled from deep inside, a smile I rarely wore.
He came back tugging a huge brown basket filled to the brim with sticks of oil pastels, some longer or thicker than others. He lifted an orange one up and showed the tip of it to me, which was stained with a black mark. “Sometimes when you blend colors this will happen, but it’s easy to rid off. Just softly, and patiently rub it off on a cloth until it disappears.” He demonstrated upon his black pants.
“Thank you. It’s kind of you. But...I can’t carry this home myself. It’s heavy.”
I turned to nurse and smiled my best pleading smile.

The basket was toiled up as nurse undressed me from my shower and father and mother were otherwise occupied. That night, with my precious basket safely under my bed, I cleaned all the multi-colored oil pastels on an old shirt, and as soon as the house was ringing with silence, I locked my door and flicked on the lamp light, and started pressing the smooth colors into the paper to blend and make a picture of kissing colors on a relatively large piece of white paper. A thrill ran from my finger tips and along my arm, and made my palms tingle as I held the colorful sticks in my hand to the paper. I hid it underneath my bed just as a rosy sun was rising.
*
I was sixteen, and I was thought beautiful: for now, at this age, it was considered beautiful to be so pale of skin, so small of feet and hands, graceful to have tiny limbs and charming to have little strength for it was now considered ‘feminine’.
It was three weeks after I had turned sixteen and for dinner, father had brought over an ugly man with a bulging waist and shiny bald head who continually made ****** jokes at the dinner table while he believed I did not understand them. He was infamous for the two wives he had had (before they died from sickness), and how he not only hit them but kept other lovers too. Yet he was desirable for his vast richness. He leered at me obnoxiously, in an attempt to smile.
Father caught him looking at me, “She’s incredibly silent, never says a word of defiance and will be a most dutiful wife.”
“Yes, she is beautiful”
My heart froze and my brain was stimulated to work twice as fast. Him?! Him?! The man who’s wives were killed through an illness called ‘abuse, neglect and disloyalty?!’
I cast my eyelashes down in order to appear a calm, modest young lady while my heart hammered in fury, disgust and a rising hysterical panic. I shot a look at my mother whose left eyebrow was twitching as she stared down at her dinner plate, and I knew she was having the same thoughts as I.
“I would be glad to have you as my son-in-law. You would have no trouble with her, and would be embraced with open arms into our family.”
They continued this path of talk through dinner while he eyeballed me in a way that made me cringe. I felt his foot nudge mine under the table and in haste tucked it under the chair with a little gasp. His eyes glittered at my gasp and I was furious with myself for letting him feel a rotten triumph. Though I had always felt an extremely strong dislike towards him from what I knew of him and sometimes saw of him with an immoral lady, something pushed in the pit of my tummy, and I knew it was pure hatred.
When mother tucked me in she was being strange. On closing my door she whispered, “I love you… so I wish you to know… don’t ever contradict men”

As I was secretly drawing a picture as I did every night till dawn, I heard my father’s voice roar in the dead of the night. In a sudden, I shoved my portrait under the bed and threw all my oil pastels into the basket, hid it, and switched the light off. I heard his voice roar again, accompanied by a thud. I was wild with fear as I crept to my door and pressed my ear against it, barely even shocked at my own daringness as my instinct, love, took over- my instinct of must knowing what was happening to my mother.
“How dare you say I’m wrong!?” there was another thud, and this time I heard a soft whimper. “She is worthless to me, not a son. And I will marry her off to a rich man who can actually benefit this family.” He roared.
There was a whisper which I strained to hear, “He will **** her”
“From the moment she was born she wasn’t made to live!” he yelled.
A hiss escaped my tongue and I coiled like a serpent, flinching as a thud was heard yet again and an immediate cry of pain escaped from both my lips and my mothers’.
A fire awoke inside me, burning my temples and my whole body and my eyes stung with hot tears; tears that burned my face as they splashed down. My whole body was shaking and my tightly squeezed eyes were going through spasms. I was no longer wild with fear, but with anger.
I turned my light back on and tugged my basket of oil pastels out. I yanked my portrait off from a thick of pile of different pictures I had drawn.
My breath was coming in quick short breaths as I finished my portrait to the utmost perfection, using every oil pastel in the basket. Every time I heard a thud, I colored with more fiery… shadowing my jaw line with the fat black oil pastel, in the crook of my ear, the corner of my mouth… where the light shone upon my fore head, how it reflected in the color of my eye and glowed on my cheeks.
When I was finished, the house was deadly quiet again and dawn was breaking. I looked down upon it and realized something that changed my life.
In frenzy I swatted out all the things I had ever drawn and stared at them in an awakening.
The colors on them were the events of my life, the things that characterized it, the decisions. They were beautiful for they had been chosen and controlled by me … I had chosen the colors I wanted and thought best for my pictures; and spent thought over how to blend different colors to the color I wanted.
And everyday, as I worked into the drawings with time, they became clearer and clearer on what was the right thing to do, and how it should possibly look like in the next stage.
I leaned over and kissed the thin lips of my portrait that didn’t look exactly like me for not even the most skilled artists have complete control over what they draw.

Then I remembered what I had told the one-legged man in the shop a few years go:
“Lights not only illuminate, they also cast shadows. The contrast makes you able to appreciate the power of both.”
Now it was time to truly let the light illuminate my life, and let the shadows let me appreciate the light that shines upon me; I color my own life, and choose my own colors.

To pull out the colors underneath the darkness of my bed…
And spill it to the world outside.
Steve Page Apr 2017
And when you read
Don't rush -
Theres no need to read
with undue speed.

And when you read
Start with a suckle -
Work up to a nibble -
Until you can gnaw without a dribble.
I encourage you
Get down to the marrow
Like there's no tomorrow.
Savour each word
As food for your soul
And live as a model
As to how to live whole.

And when you read
Apply your mind daily,
Apply each word liberally
(especially to those out of the way
hard to reach places).

And when you read
- Study
Sometimes with a buddy
But - study.
This is no hobby,
You can't afford to get sloppy.
It's as crucial for the soul
As five a day for the body
- So study.

And when you read
Treat each word
Like a tutor;
It can teach you
How to live shrewder.

And when you read
Sustain it like a seed,
Ensure you pay heed
Cos it will never mislead.

And when you read
Do it to a plan,
Always with intent
And be sure
To finish as you began.

And when you read
Commit to it daily,
Commit it to memory
To avoid thinking lazily.

And when you read
Do it while a commuter
Do it on a computer
Do it with a kindle
Do it with audio
Do it with a paperback
Do it with a hard back
Do it from front to back.
However you develop the knack
Don't let yourself slack;
This Word is no throw back,
It will keep you on track.
So just read.
Hebrews 5:13-14
1 Peter 2:2-3
2 Timothy 3:16
1Timothy 4:13
RAJ NANDY Nov 2015
GREAT ARTISTS & THEIR IMMORTAL WORKS :
CONCLUDING ITALIAN RENAISSANCE IN
VERSE.  -  By Raj Nandy, New Delhi.

Dear Readers, continuing my Story of Western Art in Verse chronologically, I had covered an Introduction to the Italian Renaissance previously. That background story was necessary to appreciate Renaissance Art fully. Now, I cover the Art of that period in a summarized form, mentioning mainly the salient features to curb the length. The cream here lies in the 'Art of the High Renaissance Period'! Hope you like it. Thanks, - Raj.

                          INTRODUCTION
“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, &
  Poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”
                                                        – Leonardo Da Vinci
In the domain of Renaissance Art, we notice the
enduring influence of the Classical touch!
Ancient Greek statues and Roman architectures,
Inspired the Renaissance artists in their innovative
ventures!
The pervasive spirit of Humanism influenced
creation of life-like human forms;
Adding ****** expressions and depth, deviating
from the earlier stiff Medieval norms.
While religious subjects continued to get depicted
in three-dimensional Renaissance Art;
Portraits, **** figures, and secular subjects, also
began to appear during this great ‘Re-birth’!
The artists of the Early and High Renaissance Era
are many who deserve our adoration and artistic
due.
Yet for the sake of brevity, I mention only the
Great Masters, who are handful and few.

EARLY RENAISSANCE ARTISTS & THEIR ART

GITTO THE PIONEER:
During early 13th Century we find, Dante’s
contemporary Gitto di Bondone the Florentine,
Painting human figures in all its beauty and form
for the first time!
His masterwork being the 40 fresco cycle in the
Arena Chapel in Padua, depicting the life of the
****** and Christ, completed in 1305.
Giotto made the symbolic Medieval spiritual art
appear more natural and realistic,
By depicting human emotion, depth with an
artistic perspective!
Art Scholars consider him to be the trailblazer
inspiring the later painters of the Renaissance;
They also refer to Giorgio Vasari’s “Lives Of
The Eminent Artists,” - as their main source.
Giotto had dared to break the shackles of earlier
Medieval two-dimensional art style,
By drawing lines which head towards a certain
focal point behind;
Like an illusionary vanishing point in space,
- opening up a 3-D ‘window into space’!
This ‘window technique’ got adopted by the
later artists with grace.
(
Giorgio Vasari, a 16th Century painter, architect & Art
historian, was born in 1511 in Arezzy, a city under the
Florentine Republic, and painted during the High
Renaissance Period.)

VASARI’s book published in 1550 in Florence
was dedicated to Cosimo de Medici.
Forms an important document of Italian Art
History.
This valuable book covers a 250 year’s span.
Commencing with Cimabue the tutor of Giotto,
right up to Tizian, - better known as Titan!
Vasari also mentions four lesser known Female
Renaissance Artists; Sister Plantilla, Madonna
Lucrezia, Sofonista Anguissola, and Properzia
de Rossi;
And Rossi’s painting “Joseph and Potiphar’s
Wife”,
An impressive panel art which parallels the
unrequited love Rossi experienced in her own
life !
(
Joseph the elder son of Jacob, taken captive by Potiphar
the Captain of Pharaoh’s guard, was desired by Potiphar’s
wife, whose advances Joseph repulsed. Rossi’s painting
of 1520s inspired later artists to paint their own versions
of this same Old Testament Story.)

Next I briefly mention architects Brunelleschi
and Ghiberti, and the sculptor Donatello;
Not forgetting the painters like Masaccio,
Verrocchio and Botticelli;
Those Early Renaissance Artists are known to
us today thanks to the Art historian Giorgio
Vasari .

BRUNELLESCHI has been mentioned in Section
One of my Renaissance Story.
His 114 meter high dome of Florence Cathedral
created artistic history!
This dome was constructed without supporting
buttresses with a double egg shaped structure;
Stands out as an unique feat of Florentine
Architecture!
The dome is larger than St Paul’s in London,
the Capitol Building of Washington DC, and
also the St Peters in the Vatican City!

GILBERTI is remembered for his massive
15 feet high gilded bronze doors for the
Baptistery of Florence,
Containing twenty carved panels with themes
from the Old Testament.
Which took a quarter century to complete,
working at his own convenience.
His exquisite naturalistic carved figures in the
true spirit of the Renaissance won him a prize;
And his gilded doors were renamed by Michel
Angelo as ‘The Gates of Paradise’!
(
At the age of 23 yrs Lorenzo Ghiberti had won the
competition beating other Architects for craving the
doors of the Baptistery of Florence!)

DONATELLO’S full size bronze David was
commissioned by its patron Cosimo de’ Medici.
With its sensual contrapposto stance in the
classical Greek style with its torso bent slightly.
Is known as the first free standing **** statue
since the days of Classical Art history!
The Old Testament relates the story of David
the shepherd boy, who killed the giant Goliath
with a single sling shot;
Cutting off his head with Goliath’s own sword!
Thus saving the Israelites from Philistine’s wrath.
This unique statue inspired all later sculptors to
strive for similar artistic excellence;
Culminating in Michael Angelo’s **** statue of
David, known for its sculptured brilliance!

MASSACCIO (1401- 1428) joined Florentine
Artist’s Guild at the age of 21 years.
A talented artist who abandoned the old Gothic
Style, experimenting without fears!
Influenced by Giotto, he mastered the use of
perspective in art.
Introduced the vanishing point and the horizon
line, - while planning his artistic works.
In his paintings ‘The Expulsion from Eden’
and ‘The Temptation’,
He introduced the initial **** figures in Italian
Art without any inhibition!
Though up North in Flanders, Van Eyck the
painter had already made an artistic innovation,
By painting ‘Adam and Eve’ displaying their
****** in his artistic creation;
Thereby creating the first **** painting in Art
History!
But such figures greatly annoyed the Church,
Since nudes formed a part of pagan art!
So these Northern artists to pacify the Church
and pass its censorship,
Cleverly under a fig leaf cover made their art to
appear moralistic!
Van Eyck was also the innovator of oil-based paints,
Which later replaced the Medieval tempera, used to
paint angles and saints.

Masaccio’s fresco ‘The Tribute Money’ requires
here a special mention,
For his use of perspective with light and shade,
Where the blithe figure of the Roman tax collector
is artistically made.
Christ is painted with stern nobility, Peter in angry
majesty;
And every Apostle with individualized features,
attire, and pose;
With light coming from a single identifiable source!
“Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s,
and unto God things that are God’s”, said Christ;
Narrated in Mathew chapter 22 verse 21, which
cannot be denied.
Unfortunately, Masaccio died at an early age of
27 years.
Said to have been killed by a jealous rival artist,
who had shed no tears!

BOTTICELLI the Florentine was born half a
century after the Dutch Van Eyck;
Remembered even to this day for his painting
the ‘Birth of Venus’, an icon of Art History
making him famous.
This painting depicts goddess Venus rising out
of the sea on a conch shell,
And the glorious path of female **** painting
commenced in Italy, - casting a spell!
His full scale **** Venus shattered the Medieval
taboo on ******.
With a subject shift from religious art to Classical
Mythology;
Removing the ‘fig-leaf cover’ over Art permanently!

I end this Early Period with VERROCCHIO, born
in Florence in fourteen hundred and thirty five.
A trained goldsmith proficient in the skills of both
painting and sculpture;
Who under the patronage of the Medici family
had thrived.
He had set up his workshop in Florence were he
trained Leonardo Da Vinci, Botticelli, and other
famous Renaissance artists alike!

FOUR CANONICAL PAINTING MODES OF
THE RENAISSANCE:
During the Renaissance the four canonical painting
modes we get to see;
Are Chiaroscuro, Sfumato, Cangiante and Unione.
‘Chiaroscuro’ comes from an Italian word meaning
‘light and dark’, a painting technique of Leonardo,
Creating a three dimensional dramatic effect to
steal the show.
Later also used with great excellence by Rubens
and the Dutch Rembrandt as we know.
‘Sfumato’ from Italian ‘sfumare’, meaning to tone
down or evaporate like a smoke;
As seen in Leonardo’s ‘Mona Lisa’ where the
colors blend seamlessly like smoke!
‘Cangiante’ means to ‘change’, where a painter
changed to a lighter or a darker hue, when the
original hue could not be made light enough;
As seen in the transformation from green to
yellow in Prophet Daniel’s robe,
On the ceiling of Sistine Chapel in Rome.
‘Unione’ followed the ‘sfumato’ quality, but
maintained vibrant colors as we get to see;
In Raphael’s ‘Alba Madonna’ in Washington’s
National Gallery.

ART OF HIGH RENAISSANCE ERA - THE
GOLDEN AGE.

“Where the spirit does not work with the
hand there is no art.”- Leonardo

With Giotto during the Trecento period of the
14th century,
Painting dominated sculpture in the artistic
endeavor of Italy.
During the 15th century the Quattrocento, with
Donetello and Giberti,
Sculpture certainly dominated painting as we get to
see!
But during the 16th century or the Cinquecento,
Painting again took the lead commencing with
the great Leonardo!
This Era was cut short by the death of Lorenzo the
Magnificent to less than half a century; (Died in 1493)
But gifted great masterpieces to the world enriching
the world of Art tremendously!
The Medieval ‘halo’ was now replaced by a fresh
naturalness;
And both Madonna and Christ acquired a more
human likeness!
Portrait paintings began to be commissioned by
many rich patrons.
While artists acquired both recognition and a status
of their own.
But the artistic focus during this Era had shifted from
Florence,  - to Venice and Rome!
In the Vatican City, Pope Julius-II was followed by
Pope Leo the Tenth,
He commissioned many works of art which are
still cherished and maintained!
Now cutting short my story let me mention the
famous Italian Renaissance Superstar Trio;
Leonardo, Raphael, and Michael Angelo.

LEONARDO DA VINCI was born in 1452 in
the village of Vinci near the City of Florence,
Was deprived of a formal education being born
illegitimate!
He was left-handed, and wrote from right to left!
He soon excelled his teacher Varrocchio, by
introduced oil based paints into Italy;
Whose translucent colors with his innovative
techniques, enhanced his painting artistically.
Sigmund Freud had said, “Leonardo was like a
man who awoke too early in the darkness while
others were all still asleep,” - he was awake!
Leonardo’s  historic ‘Note Book’ has sketches of a
battle tank, a flying machine, a parachute, and many
other anatomical and technical sketches and designs;
Reflecting the ever probing mind of this versatile
genius who was far ahead of his time!
His ‘Vituvian Man’, ‘The Last Supper’, and ‘Mona Lisa’,
Remain as his enduring works of art and more popular
than the Leaning Tower of Pisa!
Pen and ink sketch of the ‘Vitruvian Man’ with arms
and leg apart inside a square and a circle, also known
as the ‘Proportion of Man’;
Where his height correspondence to the length
of his outstretched hands;
Became symbolic of the true Renaissance spirit
of Man.
‘The Last Supper’ a 15ft by 29ft fresco work on
the refectory wall of Santa Maria, commissioned
by Duke of Milan Ludovic,
Is the most reproduced religious painting which
took three years to complete!
Leonardo searched the streets of Milan before
painting Judas’ face;
And individualized each figure with competence!
‘Mona Lisa’ with her enigmatic smile continues
to inspire artists, poets, and her viewers alike,
since its creation;
Which Leonardo took four years to complete
with utmost devotion.
Leonardo used oil on poplar wood panel, unique
during those days,
With ‘sfumato’ blending of translucent colors with
light and shade;
Creating depth, volume, and form, with a timeless
expression on Mona Lisa’s countenance!
Art Historian George Varasi says that it is the face
of one Lisa Gherardini,
Wife of a wealthy Florentine merchant of Italy.
Insurance Companies failed to make any estimation
of this portrait, declaring its value as priceless!
Today it remains housed inside an air-conditioned,
de-humidified chamber, within a triple bullet-proof
glass, in Louvre France.
“It is the ultimate symbol of human civilization”,
- exclaimed President Kennedy;
And with this I pay my humble tribute to our
Leonardo da Vinci!

MICHEL ANGELO BUONARROTI (1475-1564):
This Tuscan born sculptor, painter, architect, and
poet, was a versatile man,
Worthy to be called the archetype of the true
‘Renaissance Man’!
At the age of twelve was placed under the famous
painter Ghirlandio,
Where his inclination for sculpting began to show.
Under the liberal patronage of Lorenzo de Medici,
He developed his talent as a sculptor as we get
to see.
In the Medici Palace, he was struck by his rival
Torregiano on the nose with a mallet;
Disfiguring permanently his handsome face!
His statue of ‘Bacchus’ of 1497 and the very
beauty of the figure,
Earned him the commission for the ‘PIETA’ in
St Peter’s Basilica;
Where from a single piece of Carrara marble he
carved out the figure of ****** Mary grieving
over the dead body of Christ;
This iconic piece of sculpture which along with
his ‘David’ earned him the ‘Superstar rights’!

Michel Angelo’s **** ‘DAVID’ weighed 6.4 tons
and stood 17 feet in height;
Unlike the bronze David of Donatello, which
shows him victorious after the fight!
Michel’s David an epitome of strength and
youthful vigour with a Classical Greek touch;
Displayed an uncircumcised ***** which had
shocked the viewers very much!
But it was consistent with the Mannerism in Art,
in keeping with the Renaissance spirit as such!
David displays an attitude of placid calm with
his knitted eyebrows and sidelong glance;
With his left hand over the left shoulder
holding a sling,
Coolly surveys the giant Goliath before his
single sling shot fatally stings!
This iconic sculpture has a timeless appeal even
after 500 years, depicting the ‘Renaissance Man’
at his best;
Vigorous, healthy, beautiful, rational and fully
competent!
Finally we come to the Ceiling of the Sistine
Chapel of Rome,
Where Pope Julius-II’s persistence resulted in the
creation of world’s greatest single fresco that was
ever known!
Covering some 5000 square feet, took five years
to complete.
Special scaffoldings had to be erected for painting
scenes from ‘The Creation’ till the ‘Day of Judgment’
on a 20 meter’s high ceiling;
Where the Central portion had nine scenes from
the ‘Book of Genesis’,
With ‘Creation of Adam’ having an iconic significance!
Like Leonardo, Michel Angelo was left-handed and died
a bachelor - pursuing his art with devotion;
A man with caustic wit, proud reserve, and sublimity
of imagination!

RAFFAELLO SANZIO (1483-1520):
This last of the famous High Renaissance trio was
born in 1483 in Urbino,
Some eight years after Michel Angelo.
His Madonna series and decorative frescos
glorified the Library of Pope Julius the Second;
Who was impressed by his fresco ‘The School
of Athens’;
And commissioned Raphael to decorate his
Study in the Vatican.
Raphael painted this large fresco between 1510
and 1511, initially named as the ‘Knowledge of
Causes’,
But the 17th century guide books referred to it
as ‘The School of Athens’.
Here Plato and Aristotle are the central figures
surrounded by a host of ancient Greek scholars
and philosophers.
The bare footed Plato is seen pointing skywards,
In his left hand holds his book ‘Timaeus’;
His upward hand gesture indicating his ‘World
of Forms’ and transcendental ideas!
Aristotle is seen pointing downwards, his left
hand holds his famous book the ‘Ethics’;
His blue dress symbolizes water and earth
with an earthly fix.
The painting illustrates the historic continuance
of Platonic thoughts,
In keeping with the spirit of the Renaissance!
Raphael’s last masterpiece ‘Transfiguration’
depicts the resurrected Christ,
Flanked by prophets
Abigail Madsen Jan 2014
Day one walk into high school
See all the freshman boys drool
Over senior girls in their short skirts
Over getting the championship football shirt
But high school is awkward
I'm not talking burping public awkward
I'm talking tripping and falling in to a bucket of ***** mop water that was just lifted of the buffet of germs that is the floor - awkward
Then having the hottest boy at school be right there watching
Traumatized - you get up and brush you self off
Only to turn around and see the mean girl there
Horrified -
High school is awkward
So don't spend time worrying about it
We all go through bad hair days
I know it's a cliché
But the more time you spend complaining
And waiting
The more you can hear a cracking sound
That is your own spirit breaking -
But you have to understand
There are going to be days -
Day's where it rains
And the water fills up your boots
And you want to say deuces
Because you are tired of being abused
But guess what
It's time to stop playing cute -
Silly goose -
Enough excuses
You have to be like a ******* and ****** -
****** high school like it's your *****
Like it might try and punch you in the face
And you wont even flinch -
Because some day you're going to be rich
And some day you're going to thank high school -
For showing you "it only gets better from here"
Because the only place to go from the bottom is up
And you're only getting prepared for your close up
So don't accept anything
And challenge everything -
Because contrary to what you're told
High school will not define you -
And if that's as good as it gets for some people then I'm sorry -
But there is so much more to life then learning the square root of ninety
Every time you want to hit the control key - and hit control Z
Don't
Because you cant undo the past
And you can't copy and paste the future
So if you're struggling that much - get a tutor
Life is not about just getting to the next goal
So don't be satisfied with adequate -
Average -
And "Just okay"
Because one day when you're old and grey
You will be sitting smiling in dismay
Dismay until you decay
Decaying in the ground
Put back where you were once found
You will no longer be thinking about that one time you and fell into a mop bucket -
But instead the time you made everyone your *****
Because no school can understand how strong one of us is
One who decides to look past the awkward and make themselves - awesome
And it's okay to be awesome
It's okay to rock them
Life is a gem
So pick up a pen
And the next time when
Someone tells you high school is awkward
Call them a coward
And tell them to take a cold shower
Because they need to wake up
And smell the - erasers
Before they get a facer
Because no greats have ever become so by taking it safer
Now do yourself a favor -
And Start Making High School **Greater
ACAC Dec 2018
hold on, wait, what, what similarities?

I sit in the group looking around, the grey plastic chair crushes my ******* spine as I cling to it for dear life.
the tutor comes to me last, two weeks in a row I don't get time to talk.
great, I'm already an outsider, now I don't get time to talk.

I listen as the group in the nicer, cosier and brighter room next door laugh and joke.
they are all young and pretty, a feeling of longing pulls me down like a giant magnet, why am I not in that group. have I not got the skills to be young and pretty anymore?

for almost one month now I despair.
how can I ever find my voice in this group there are all so strong, strong women.
this week she comes to me first, I speak, it doesn't help. can they even see me, understand my accent, it seems I'm more different than similar.

the next week I don't go, avoidance wins 1st place gold trophy as I sit alone in bed.
with other groups I'm so strong and proud, can I fake it next week, or maybe just conform and comply.

and so it goes on, am my question remains, what ****** similarities?
April W May 2014
How does it feel
When life doesn't seem real
And you're floating about on your own
Your life seems uncertain
So you draw the curtain
Pretending there's nobody home
Don't theorize
Look in your eyes
They can't tell lies
Though you may disguise what you see
The mirror is free
Song birds are talking
And runners are walking
Be yourself
Be yourself
Be yourself
Be yourself
We need a tutor
So we built a computer
And programed ourselves not to see
The truth and the lying
The dead and the dying
A silent majority
Don't theorize
Look in your eyes
Are they telling lies
The ones that they learn on T.V.
What a way to be free
Be yourself
Be yourself
Then you can free yourself
Free yourself
See yourself
Then you can see yourself
Be yourself


a.s.
Eliza Noxon Sep 2017
It, is so, unbelievably easy
To trick people into thinking you’re smart
Seriously.
I’m pretty sure the only person who says I’m not smart, is me

I am not intelligent.
But I know big words, and how to put them together
So I sound like I know what I’m saying
How to say things like;
The text was too overburdened by prose to present a coherent and reasonable defense, the author’s attempt at subtext failed to appropriately suggest their point and only lowered its overall value.
Which is just a fancy way of saying the book was bad and I didn’t like it.

I’m not an intellectual,
I’m a performer.
Stringing a series of simple statements with severe synonyms
Trading in tongue-twisters that turn the tide to treasure
Rapidly ranting, rejecting restraint, my reward is the right to a requiem when I repose
Vividly view me as verbose, vocal, vociferous, even villainous may be a verdict but never vulnerable, unvaried, or vanilla
So I speak fast, fabricating fame, faking face and faith
Alliteration is amazing, an adept affectation of an academic

I’m not intuitive.
I’m not clever.
I’m not astute.
I’m not
Special.

I just know the phrases and the dates
How to use diction and grammar reminiscent of the classics
I know how to mimic the people with stars in their eyes
And the flavor of their voice.

I can mold my voice to fit a scholarly cadence
Flipping words off my tongue, the way they do
Words like notes in an orchestral discussion,
Yet I’ve never really felt all that smart.
Just, faking it.



Isn’t that the point though?
Fake it till you make it?
I tell myself all the time,
I’m not, I’m not, I’m not
But why am I not

I walk, talk, and act like I’m intelligent
I understand theories and the classics,
I can hold my own in discussions and
Formulate my own opinions
Hell! I’ve won awards and helped tutor
So Who says I’m not smart?
I can be! I will be!
I am!
Who say’s I can’t?
Who say’s…..

It, is so, unbelievably easy
To trick yourself into thinking you’re smart
Seriously.
I’m pretty sure the only person who can tell me I’m not smart,

Is me
muteD Oct 2018
Pathetic.
That’s what I’d call you.
Just plain miserable
and manipulative.
You tricked me into giving you the world .
Deceived me into believing that you’d never do me *****
You blinded me by your lies
“Forget about them , you have me.”
But , I didn’t really have you ..
Did I ?
You took what you wanted .
You let me put you before myself .
But ?
I don’t even blame you .
Maybe if I would’ve been in your position ,
Being offered the world
And only being asked for friendship in return ..
Maybe then I would’ve robbed you of your trust .
And your love .

You were my best friend .
My ace ,
My platonic soulmate .
And I treated you as much .
But, what was I ?
To you ,
What was I ?
A personal tutor ?
Remember those last two essays that you just couldn’t get done ?
Who helped you ?
Who stayed up after an exhausting day at work ,
After having to bike home in the cold and rain ?
Just so you could pass and not worry.
Maybe , I was just a free ride .
Always taking you places ,
Always giving you the keys and letting you do whatever.
You filled the tank maybe twice
within a nine month period .
And I never once said anything .
Oh I got it , I was your ATM.
Whenever you needed money ,
I was glad to help .
Whether it was for an Uber so you could go to your volleyball tournament
Since your own “mother” couldn’t take you
Or whether it was for a Plan B because
YIKES
Your boyfriend didn’t know how to pull out .
Hm , I guess I was also a personal shopper .
Buying you clothes when I bought me some .
You didn’t wanna spend your money ?
That was fine .
I would spend mine
And you didn’t even have to ask.
I was everything except your friend
and that’s all I wanted to be .

I should’ve seen this coming .
I should have KNOWN .
Looking back
All I can see are the signs ,
Foreshadowing what was to come .
You started to change right in front of my own eyes
but I didn’t want to believe it .
Didn’t want to believe what I could clearly see .
You started to ignore me .
For days on end .
Living in the same house became something like a
Silent war .
Everyone against me .
Including you .
You started to disappear into your room .
There were no more lifetime movie marathons together .
No more staying up and goofing around together .
No more talking about any and everything together .
I lost you way before I knew I lost you
and that makes my heart ache
like a pre-existing bruise
getting hit over and over again .
This poem means a lot to me . Honestly . Someone hurt me and I don’t know how long it’s gonna take until I’m okay and don’t think about it anymore .
Daniel James Mar 2011
Luke was such a dreadful fidget
He couldn't sit still for a minute
He'd toss and turn all lesson long
Like a caterpillar crawling on a cattle prong
He'd flick his rulers, click his pens
Cluck and fuss like a headless hen.
His tutor, a tall and sombre man
Was struggling with his teaching plan
He'd taken three days to prepare
But Luke was more than he could bare.
"Right! That's it! I've had enough!
If you don't stop I'll call your mum.
Unless you're really in fact quite ill
I'd advise you to stop it. Oh do keep still!
I'm just about to lose my mind, oh Luke
You're being quite unkind!"
But Luke was on a sugar high
"I can't stop!" He said, "I don't know why!"
And with that he jumped up, began to dance
He leaped and swung and swooped and pranced
Till all the neighbours gathered round
To gaze and gawk at this unsightly sound...
WS Warner Sep 2011
The sound of your voice,
linguistic forte
digital portrait combined,
reads lyrical, like Joyce,
the use of imagery -
elevating the plebeian,
resplendent -  
the imposition sublime.

Pellucid prose, tête-à-tête
immersed in esoteric allusion
spoken with au fait.
Liberating my pedestrian
inhibition,
premise of surrender -
adrift, desultory,
delicious ambiguity.

Seduction begins in
the mind,
assets of imagination,
intellectual property;
side by side: lying supine
didactic invitation,
in assertions of diversion;
a chance to find
euphoria within our reach.

Linear alliteration;
fulgent flowing Fumé
Blanc,
fire and wine
private beach,
rhymes of elucidation
two bodies align,
I will learn if you teach.

Sensual epistemology,
curvaceous
figure of speech,
the Orphic; woeful
lover’s plight,
a porous song recite
art professor, verse confessor
tutor me tonight.

©2010 & 2011 W.S Warner
No peace in heaven
No life in hell
I had learnt .
Left by my tutor to choose
Choose between living in violence
Or dying doomed for eternity.
By my assumptions
The two seems too close for an option
By law no one is meant to sit on the fence.

They say "life is a journey"
But I wonder how I agreed to embarked on it at first
Maybe I was forced
Forced to be born
Or maybe it was my fault
My fault that I was too desperate to be born
Born into a world of wars
Where we fight against all
Against trust
Even against God.
I wish I knew the beginning before I was conceived
I wish I could tell where this path will end me
I wish Heaven is sure
Sure that I could end my journey here and cross
Cross into eternal peace without being judge
Judged by the devil for not being his follower
Or judged by God for not being as perfect as His followers.
I just wish all this second coming thing remain a prank
A prank That will end a joke contrary as plan
What a great relieve it will be
If the spirit leaves the flesh to be
So I could just sit on the fence in peace
And Losing Heaven stop being my greatest fear indeed.

— The End —