Monthly Archives: June 2018

tips for today


We do not need war to stave off our boredom or give us meaning and definition as a people. It is not our human nature but rather our unhealed, unaddressed suffering that propels us to industrialized killing. Killing at this level is quite simply the consequence of a fear based philosophy that drives us to seek safety by attempting the impossible : to control everything and every one around us.

                              – Claude Anshin Thomas from his book, At Hell’s Gate A Soldier’s Journey from War to Peace

 

 

 

 

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the people who had cured themselves from the virus they once called language ( a dance piece) by pd lyons


the people who had cured themselves

from the virus they once called language

~

communicated eloquently

with their hands

with their arms

with their skin colour

with their eyes

a dance impossible to be misunderstood

~

they learned of the winds worship of leaves

the way the sun and every shadow enjoyed each day by day

and the height of midnight stars all sparkling –

happy with the moon

longing for its return

~

eventually they forgot –

the coarseness of verbal abuse

the trickery of its seduction

the con of its half truths

~

they made themselves dwellers of an island

rescuers and healers of those washed up from the deep

unafraid of reinfection they let the long term healing of their lives

speak for themselves

.


William S. Burroughs

“Language is a virus from outer space”

William S. Burroughs

Summer with Burroughs


House of Heart

Remember the summer
we were obsessed with Burroughs?
Anything familiar like the sound of far off thunder
close enough to subdue the mad-paced hours.
Something  inciting,  a strike of lightning.
The scent of combustion ready to ignite.
Everything electric that made us come alive.
Our hearts caught between whale song and sigh,
spontaneous thunder and intermittent quiet.
you and I,  sporadic as a summer storm.

 

 

Leonid Afremov  “Rains Rustle”

 

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In Candid Photography the Keys Are Persistence and Quantity


Petesteph1's Blog

street-scene

Shoot Often and Keep Shooting.

Cartier Bresson was the king of candid photography.

He would sometimes scout a location for days before he even took a shot.

You may not have the time or inclination to do that but what you can do is look around to observe your environment and thanks to digital cameras, take a mountain of shots.

Persist, you will strike gold eventually.

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razor black mirror porcelain by pd lyons


Pdlyons's Explorations

razor black

mirror porcelain

for your

rose bud

bird song mouth

I have made bouquets

gathering

shadow light

creatures wonderful

grotesques fortuitous

clear potable water

dark caves beneath a sunless world

secret hand fulls

tremors lolled by after glows

alone like ivory your room in blosom

rich solitudes of orchid

perfumed isolations

joys

with

or

without

love

i only make for you

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Boomerz


Pdlyons's Explorations

Boomerz

I live only in memory.

The day to day does not inspire me,

Only wanting to sit here and think of what used to be

Strung out on the drug America.

Safe only in my own home,

Locked doors, paid taxes, insurance policies protect me.

TV-petrol- chemicals nourish me.

People not like me, outrage me.

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three poems from An Invitation to Poetry


http://books.wwnorton.com/books/detail.aspx?ID=5695

Maggie Dietz (Editor), Robert Pinsky (Editor, Boston University)

1200px-ElParqueJuliaDeBurgos

Willimantic, Connecticut


Ay, Ay, Ay de la Grifa Negra

by Julia De Burgos

Ay, ay, ay, that am kinky-haired and pure black
kinks in my hair, Kafir in my lips;
and my flat nose Mozambiques.Black of pure tint, I cry and laugh
the vibration of being a black statue;
a chunk of night, in which my white
teeth are lightning;
and to be a black vine
which entwines in the black
and curves the black nest
in which the raven lies.
Black chunk of black in which I sculpt myself,
ay, ay, ay, my statue is all black.

They tell me that my grandfather was the slave
for whom the master paid thirty coins.
Ay, ay, ay, that the slave was my grandfather
is my sadness, is my sadness.
If he had been the master
it would be my shame:
that in men, as in nations,
if being the slave is having no rights
being the master is having no conscience.

Ay, ay, ay wash the sins of the white King
in forgiveness black Queen.

Ay, ay, ay, the race escapes me
and buzzes and flies toward the white race,
to sink in its clear water;
or perhaps the white will be shadowed in the black.

Ay, ay, ay my black race flees
and with the white runs to become bronzed;
to be one for the future,
fraternity of America!

Julia de Burgos, “Ay, Ay, Ay, of the Kinky-Haired Negress,” tr. by Jack Agüeros from Song of the Simple Truth: The Complete Poems of Julia de Burgos. Copyright ©1996 by Jack Agüeros. Used by permission of Curbstone Press.

Dawn

by Octavio Paz

Cold rapid hands
draw back one by one
the bandages of dark
I open my eyes
still
I am living
at the center
of a wound still fresh

Translated from the Spanish by Charles Tomlinson


WITH HIS VENOM

by Sappho

 

With his venom

irrestible

and bittersweet

that loosener of limbs, Love

reptile-like

strikes me down

 

( trans from the Greek by Mary Barnard}


poet bios

true


“If we want to create a world where Auschwitz is not possible, we must behave differently from those who created it.”

 – At Hell’s Gate A Soldiers Journey from War to Peace by Claude Anshin Thomas

 

https://www.zaltho.org/

How Zaltho Makes a Difference

The Zaltho Foundation supports populations affected by violence through meditation retreats, workshops, and one-on-one guidance. Zaltho’s programs emphasize the value of mindfulness and meditation in promoting healing and transformation within individuals and communities. The Zaltho Foundation regularly works with:

  •  Combat veterans and their families: Our programs include meditation retreats for veterans and visits with veterans in prisons, hospitals, and war zones. Veterans retreats provide a unique and supportive environment in which veterans can recognize and begin to heal the emotional and spiritual wounds of combat through mindfulness practice.
  • Communities Affected by Violence: The Zaltho Foundation offers teachings and talks to trauma survivors, prison inmates, gang members, schools, and government organizations seeking to respond wisely to violence.
  • The General Public: We provide workshops, talks, and retreats that present the techniques of sitting meditation, breath awareness, communication skills, conflict resolution, and emotional healing techniques within the context of mindfulness meditation practice.

two poems, ROWING & THE AUTHOR OF THE JESUS PAPERS SPEAKS by Anne Sexton


ROWING
A story, a story!
(Let it go. Let it come.)
I was stamped out like a Plymouth fender
into this world.
First came the crib
with its glacial bars.
Then dolls
and the devotion to their plasctic mouths.
Then there was school,
the little straight rows of chairs,
blotting my name over and over,
but undersea all the time,
a stranger whose elbows wouldn’t work.
Then there was life
with its cruel houses
and people who seldom touched-
though touch is all-
but I grew,
like a pig in a trenchcoat I grew,
and then there were many strange apparitions,
the nagging rain, the sun turning into poison
and all of that, saws working through my heart,
but I grew, I grew,
and God was there like an island I had not rowed to,
still ignorant of Him, my arms, and my legs worked,
and I grew, I grew,
I wore rubies and bought tomatoes
and now, in my middle age,
about nineteen in the head I’d say,
I am rowing, I am rowing
though the oarlocks stick and are rusty
and the sea blinks and rolls
like a worried eyeball,
but I am rowing, I am rowing,
though the wind pushes me back
and I know that that island will not be perfect,
it will have the flaws of life,
the absurdities of the dinner table,
but there will be a door
and I will open it
and I will get rid of the rat insdie me,
the gnawing pestilential rat.
God will take it with his two hands
and embrace it.

As the African says:
This is my tale which I have told,
if it be sweet, if it be not sweet,
take somewhere else and let some return to me.
This story ends with me still rowing.

– from The Awful Rowing Towards God 1975
( Her eighth collection of poetry is entitled The Awful Rowing Toward God.The title came from her meeting with a Roman Catholic priest who, unwilling to administer last rites, told her “God is in your typewriter.” This gave the poet the desire and willpower to continue living and writing. The Awful Rowing Toward God and The Death Notebooks are among her final works, and both center on the theme of dying

1928–1974
Anne Sexton

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Sexton#Death

Within 12 years of writing her first sonnet, she was among the honored poets in the U.S.: a Pulitzer Prize winner, a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and the first female member of the Harvard chapter of Phi Beta Kappa.[10][11]

On October 4, 1974, Sexton had lunch with Kumin to revise galleys for Sexton’s manuscript of The Awful Rowing Toward God, scheduled for publication in March 1975 (Middlebrook 396). On returning home she put on her mother’s old fur coat, removed all her rings, poured herself a glass of vodka, locked herself in her garage, and started the engine of her car, ending her life by carbon monoxide poisoning.[12]

In an interview over a year before her death, she explained she had written the first drafts of The Awful Rowing Toward God in 20 days with “two days out for despair and three days out in a mental hospital.” She went on to say that she would not allow the poems to be published before her death. She is buried at Forest Hills Cemetery & Crematory in Jamaica Plain, Boston, Massachusetts.

Sexton is seen as the modern model of the confessional poet. Maxine Kumin described Sexton’s work: “She wrote openly about menstruation, abortion, masturbation, incest, adultery, and drug addiction at a time when the proprieties embraced none of these as proper topics for poetry.”[13]


THE AUTHOR OF THE JESUS PAPERS SPEAKS

In my dream
I milked a cow,
the terrible udder
like a great rubber lily
sweated in my fingers
and as I yanked,
waiting for the moon juice,
waiting for the white mother,
blood spurted from it
and covered me with shame.
Then God spoke to me and said:
People say only good things about Christmas.
If they want to say something bad,
they whisper.
So I went to the well and drew a baby
out of the hollow water.
Then God spoke to me and said:
Here. Take this gingerbread lady
and put her in your oven.
When the cow gives blood
and the Christ is born
we must all eat sacrifices.
We must all eat beautiful women.

Anne Sexton  from The Book of Folly 1972

the girls i knew in high school were all enamored with Sylvia. and i must admit i was some what smitten. but there was this teacher of English. she did not debate but rather exposed the rare woman genius the all too common crucifixion the dark stronger that the bright, the strength to take control in a time in a place where all is only waiting around food feeding on food attracted like horseflies to tenderness. the time was she said now and so the time was and so she said it was therefore it would be now and never any other time but. – pd lyons

Stainless Unmarked Sky, from Myths of Multiplicity by pd lyons, the runner up for the 2014 erbacce prize for poetry


Pdlyons's Explorations

Stainless Unmarked Sky

Single bed against a powder green wall
Magazine photos yellow cellophane taped
Favourite red t-shirt no underwear
30/06 lever action
Blue barrel fingerprints
Weevil tick toes
A Fly between the glass hums
Until heat makes everything
Even outside
Still.

Beneath that shirt
Each little island bump
Up to where if a boy
An Adams apple‘d be.
Knee steady, butt-end
On a white board floor
Spidering fingers
Raw cotton breath
Knowing it’s loaded
Stainless unmarked
Alone in that room

Sky.

where does sky begin

Myths of Multiplicity by pd lyons, the runner up for the 2014 erbacce prize for poetry Myths of Multiplicity by pd lyons, the runner up for the 2014 erbacce prize for poetry

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