“His Days In Office”

“His Days In Office”

His days in office draw him closer to himself;
He knows he’ll  finish what he long ago began,
And now? Well, now the dusts and sands
Sequestered in the hourglass run low, the shelf
Awaits, perhaps in this hall or on the other wall
Among the former Oval Offices eulogized
And honoured, and after all, who imagines perpetuity? No surprise
In this, and nothing to be done but heed the last election’s call.
He knows exactly what he’s  done, and he recalls
The early years when nothing hinted at the fall
Of institutions or what his fellows thought when one and all,
They outdid themselves before his very eyes. Wthal,
Their thoughts so tersely croaked upon the twigs of some fine November’s day,
Are odd reminders that values change, and curds dissolve in all that whey.

“Now Mark a Man’s Credentials”

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“Now Mark  the Man’s Credentials”

Now mark  the man’s credentials as he speaks
To pacify the greater numbers in the act
Within the sport of words, his only ammunition, the facts
Of light within his arbitrary audience. In this he cheats
Himself  and all that is of simplicity, the one
And indivisible beyond the Sadrat’ul-Muntahá, the point
By Whom the conscious constant cursive case of time appoints
Both upper and lower worlds and effortlessly runs
Within Itself this generations’s needs
Deposited, seeds of what will be in fields, in mountains locked,
And from which, freely, fire and ice withdraws their stocks.
Creation surely finds the end in deeds.
If in the breath there is not proof enough
To others witnessed, what is it to be
Amongst us all beyond mere mortal toil or immortal fee
And foils alike, these gems are simple stones.
And it is true that all have rights to speak?
If life is worth beholding to a saint,
Thus then reckon life worth living with no complaint,
A longer extended cut along the grain
For some; a sculpted verse, splinters carved, a life
In words of fine complexion for others while the knife
And chisel complete their commission in omission, again
In elimination to capture something safe,astounds,
Contraband of observation and objects more or less
For all the world in waiting; certitude’s with us,
My friend, in likelihood a likeness have they have found
A last and least messiah blindly plucked, jury duty in the crowd.
They must, if blind duty binds, expose the cloud
Above the clods whereon he sits uncrowned
By all but his delusion, angels’ muted corkscrews and horns
 Release the cork of new and untried bottles for every eye and ear to see
And hear upon the virgin bow of a ship which no one will believe
Is reason enough for this and one fine statue placed.
Gifted verses do not make the tale.
Ananias, lo! to you I speak in verse
To forsake this prophesy live or even worse.

Once

The only way to deal with an unfair world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion. –Albert Camus

***

Sometimes when I think how good my book can be, I can hardly breathe.

—Truman Capote

“The Knowledge”

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“The Knowledge”

The knowledge of the thing, a single breath, a pebble
On the beach, a grain of dust, a semblance of a solitaire in seed
That afternoon at Kitty Hawk that married destiny and need
For millions…or even worse, some jot or tittle on a treble
Note scribbled on a single page within a tattered score;
It’s firsts or yet again, in time it’s lasts; the leasts
Among the spores abused and blessed within the kneading yielding yeast
Of five fecund loaves that feeds the thousands; the thing she swore
She’d never do the night before he knew he would. The ringing
Of a solitary bell in 1941 one cool December Sunday’s outing`neath a rising sun
From where the first “Hello!” from Cain to Abel,
in the afterglow of “firsts” to repetitious marathons
That set the record straight the night they drove Ol’ Dixie down
to the tune of raucous drunken singing
In the belly of a ship at port before McHenry
as the glare of flares and rockets filled the ears and lit the skies:
The first and last hurrah in Nagasaki on the beach the night the music died…

“The Deed”

Caesar's funeral

“The Deed”

The deed is done; Cæsar’s death beside the point.
Of course, some several trinkets to collect
And box and some there are who promise to reflect
On what’s been said or what is grist made grit for future pundits to anoint.
But we’re not finished here; might we turn our eyes
To months and years ahead to present promises unfulfilled
For movements gentler to deride, some new tryst for someone’s will?
And we’ll be at the thing with something less disguised
Than we were wont to wear to mask the gnarled face
Of bigotry that’s ever there; a place
For some younger soul’s reported win, surprise! perhaps a show; the race
Is on but nothing less than more will do and competition’s traced
The route for them, of course, but no one roots for us who seem so satisfied
If in the end we stumble on across the line with nothing left but pride.

“A Mighty Ogre”

“A Mighty Ogre”

A mighty ogre looms, attend! Pointing
At the aged and frail, suspending sentences and dismissals;
Curt. Accusations rise as pernicious youthful lichens, thistles,
In the din of coarser winds through choirs of dandelions anointing
What they take to be their virgin soil yet cannot pollinate. But I am
Here to mention lightly–if at all–that we will surely meet
In landscapes where no salamander walks nor stalks and seek
A common ground in placeless journeys born of powers that can
Alone confirm the comedy of an eternal phoenix
or the tragedy of lethal mortal dreams
That once again refuse the mighty hawk or lowly
Dove to be our judge, and here before the wholly
Living rise above all but material integrity. The sorely
Tried and scorched in every age of folly’s folly
turn attentions inward toward the loam of hearts
Or outward,skyward to edge of air yet tethered whether
by the ancient strength of Cæsar’s horses
or the proper use of Virgil’s arts.

” Out of the quarrel with others we make rhetoric; out of the quarrel with ourselves we make poetry.”
~W.B. Yeats
[13 June 1865-28 January 1939


“We do on stage things that are supposed to happen off. Which is a kind of integrity, if you look on every exit as being an entrance somewhere else.”

Tom Stoppard
[1937 - ]
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead [1967]

“His Dreams”

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“His Dreams”

His dreams define the smiles within his skies, but goals
Are drowned within the pits, the bottoms, the deadly dregs
Of what this world seeks that greets the eye; the festering eggs
To what in nature all but cedes reality. What foals
To what dark stallions then are bred?
He need not strain himself to know the truth of this,
And in his several steps he leaves no trace
Of what he’s become to mark his leaving of the place.
Specialties and exhibits, the inner lining of the kiss
That one day brings up bubbles from the depths of readied cauldrons;
Progeny and circumstance, my friend! Mortality confirms in
No uncertain terms a many-hidden hydra and remorse
For what a man must abdicate when incident has run its course.
His dreams refine the miles within his eyes, but goals
Are crowned within the lows, the highs, and all their middling rôles.

“Vetted Miles”

Driving

“Vetted Miles”

Vetted miles and truck stops all across the state
To feel the blessing of the eyes, the rising voice
Within his own breast; the choice
Is always his, oh yes, of course, and he’s arrived, and late
Enough each time to bear the weight of witnesses that his
Are not his eyes, nor his the sacred words
That even he can use. He’s seen nothing here and so he’s turned
The car around and while it may be circumspect, he’s heading home.
Then comes the once again, the call
Is always there, that Tennyson and Frost in all the walls,
That albatross of restlessness that bleaches clarity in tones
Of sepia and bronze, the clothes,  the nakedness of all
Past memories perfumed in ancient rhyme. Silences make every room
A canyon trussed by random thoughts of “Yes?”, “Tonight?”, and “Soon?”

“The World Will Soon Enough Unite”

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Today marks the Anniversary of the Birth of Bahá’u’lláh, Whom Bahá’ís of the World regard as the Manifestation of God for this Day, the Promised One of all religions, the Prophet-Founder of their Faith. The Birth of Baha’u’llah is one of nine holy days in the Bahá’í Calendar that is celebrated by Bahá’ís and during which work is suspended. The Holy Day celebrates the birth of Bahá’u’lláh, the Prophet-Founder of the Bahá’í Faith.

“The World Will Soon Enough Unite”

The world will soon enough unite, but not for love
Nor traffic, nor trading certitude for the sake of progress, peace
Or brotherhood or nonesuch religious truths; no, hatred does not cease
To suit egregious monthly recipes. The weekly treasure trove
Of convenient disaster placates crowds whose cry is doom
Whose reason deadens eager ears with bold bathetic lazzis. Audacity
In the nightly death toll seals a thinly clad tenacity
Of migrant militants whose creative zeal leaves little room
For doubt that they mean business. No. The whole
Will come into its own, the tribes at last lament as tears
Of mothers cease and nations lose their froth in fears
When peace revisits every valley as Prophets have foretold,
And all because it is His will that it be so.
This Great Peter will not willingly leave his Rome,
And while once again they part His robes
and desecrate the many-fractured Holy Mount,
slightly to the north the Word, Itself, has found Its Palindrome.

“Largesse”

Largesse

“Largesse”

Largesse, and aims are high perhaps but not so high
That all the world concedes the call
To extremes as must soon wane and not at all
So generously ordained as reach the loftiness of lies.
But weighed on level grounds prepared
To live and die within a tapestry
That may or may not be cause for apathy
And ecstasy in swelling ranks on alabaster stairs
To banks of realms we cannot yet see. Not first
Nor last among all are those who line
The avenues, the pedestrian mists, a teeming mankind
Spread as swarms in clouds throughout the world. Minds
And hearts cannot address themselves to what will
Out in time that every man deserves this sterling word,
This honour due to he who lives in spite of the absurd.

“Quietly, Adventists”

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“Quietly, Adventists”

Quietly, adventists, circumstances, events will tilt and, tossed,
Belie their source, defy all purpose,
Lost in ballyhoo and bombastic noise loosed
In garments of comedy and nether-tragic costs
When of a sudden, lack of audience
Stifles spittle churned and turned to gauze and cotton candy
In spinning queues of mental traffic; what comes in handy
Mauls the maudlin, crosses lines and fences
And while so much the better for CNN, barely scores
On Public Television. So much the better
For lessers or worse, the editor’s opt or letter
To the begetter of just another ad, progenitor of national lore;
When the edge of justice touches drifts of reason:
Even the planets and the brightest stars retain their seasons.