Category Archives: Idolatry

“This You Chose”

“This You Chose”

This you chose, you know, the lethal wound, external fire,
Internal final cut the cleanest; the choice was never mine.
This you chose; your arms, your scent defined
The borders, walls, the floors, the exposure. Your desires
Say nothing past the yesterdays of pre-dawn, and glad
I was to rest the while, and glad you are that I am gone.
But nothing’s rendered in the late night’s song,
The me in you, and yes! You know the sad
Result: that moon’s pain can not know a sequel.
The senses, these you know , with no contempt,
But radiant resignation in the hours of heat and pure idolatry. Spent,
The sentence stands within this world. These final sentiments rule;
The veil, the truths we’ve always known; the hourglass, the idols of our nights,
Its sands, a closing hush of breath at daybreak when all our meteors take flight.

“Gold Bars Soar”

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“Gold Bars Soar”

Gold bars soar that may or may not be there as dollars rise and fall
While doves and hawks lose feathers and the bourgeois stain
Their corporate tablecloths; numbers genuflect as mortgage rates
And candidates trade places in the spin. Who sleeps in the caterwaul;
Who stampedes for attention in the networks’ nightly call
To arms not heard since Boston; whose cotillions root for the notorious? Bait
And bombast never fails; the remedy is ever there and altogether late,
Meticulously timed by someone out to fill the stadia and malls
With never ending seasons’ greetings and wherewithal
To keep the vital signs of spinning polls and sardines at the gates,
Martin’s dream is deemed appropriate for the calendar and numbers integrate
The use of steroids and youthful thrall so no one drops the ball.
Who needs another change for heaven’s sake as one size fits all:
…And who really gives a damn with elections in the fall?

“They Make Such Declarations”

“They Make Such Declarations”

They make such declarations, don’t they? They bet their lives
On all they see and we’re inclined to give
Them credit for’t, and…perhaps they’re right, but then of course we live
As they do, fully eased, appeased; put on and off expressions
as if they were utensils, knives, or possibly our wives.
Production far exceeds the numbers, bounties burn by definition into
wastes along the warm Caribbean shores.
Invoking freedoms–as we who have are wont to do–
The sanctified continue to enjoy eternal noons
In this world’s latest bloated day. With upraised palms,
the intensity of incense fails to mask the telltale odour;
A mile beneath, the ooze is upward, vapours restive here and there,
And as the Titans yawn, Egypt bellows, shaking gown and hair
In all directions, scattering the saints of more than latter days, who dared
Her only yesterday to state her case, and lay her precious assets bare.
Migrants in the fault-lines smile, regarding who must rise and fall,
but when the prayers have ceased and denizens of Cairo weep
Surely, even Isis bleeds. Her boils drained, her coffers fleeced,
She voids another thousand years before she sleeps.

…a revision of the poem…”Swept Aside”

…a revision of the poem…

“Swept Aside”

Swept aside, all moments and celestial mementos collide
And waste no never-mind on credence and retention
In the wake of greater cosmic rinds and supine celestial reflection.
Mortality by definition lies; not so through what histories imply
But in the daily interaction of missives from the Goal
And penultimate ilunga * of the Source or
Sanctions of interaction in the triumphant triad of the coarsest
Ores of time, of space, and all that matters. Time, the cosmic linen folds
Of space and active order; space, the theatre of experience at the heart
Of the observer; matter, but an audience, a phenomena in passive
Active shadows of Creation and its nemesis. Simplicity is massive,
Complexity but a word; a question’s languages are art
And science while the answers form the pathos and the abstract.
What is more pathetic than to be and yet be nothing in the act?
Simplicity in the classic form requires
The prefects of a perfect vacuum
Combined in such a way as compliments the acumen
Of a strident meme, the jealous zeitgeist, tests that to the whole inspire
An urgent need to pause, to linger over bodies no longer really there,
A little more than a half a generation’s substance in a given time.
So granted this, so beautifully and tragically resigned,
Aloud comes the elegies of episodes to “Move along!”or “Retire!”
With such a cry inscribed, there was and always is
A here and there in rapid profit worshipped, fierce
As gallstones of desperation: “This, our chosen age, rehearsed
Upon a cross of memories little more than lyrics of an ancient tryst!”
And, equally, the many crowned and catalogued, remain aloof
Through symmetries of perfection in a sacred dynasty of embroidered truth.

*The word is ilunga, from the Bantu language of Tshiluba, and means a person ready to forgive any abuse for the first time, to tolerate it a second time, but never a third time.

When there is this, that is.
With the arising of this, that arises.
When this is not, neither is that.
With the cessation of this, that ceases.

His Holiness The Buddha

“Hitler’s Mother’s Eyes”

“Hitler’s Mother’s Eyes”

The finer strokes are hardened now, abandoned, put away
With fine tipped pens and rich rhetoric delicacies
Of touch that dance in satins in the margins, intricacies
Of form no longer sharpened somehow blurred in recent days,
An odd obscurity cocooned in saffron moods of comfort.
I linger now behind
The door before I join the others in the queue if I am there at all.
I shall not be missed, nor will I keep the lists of midnight calls
That come too late to birth an interest and not at all on time
To make a difference in the greater scheme of things.
I’ll not expire, no. But, what exactly do you say
I’m missing in the fray, my friend? I’m no one’s “by the way.”
My house was sold some time ago; I rent the coterie of my days.
So if the sentiment’s removed from hill to shore and back again
to claim the right-of-way
Tomorrow, or in some new guash and interplay
within a Chinese fan― speak gently to the hand
And when it dries, you’ll find me sitting where I was
when all of this began.
But then we always knew the score. The hidden wars along the left
Of pages in the history book, the marble records etch so little
Of the terrors of the kill, the whim and wanderlust,
the spin and spittle
Of the needle pointing to a second Khan or city states bereft
Of arms to hold the tide and teeming hoards
That threaten Po or Elbe; the Pyrenees or just another Hannibal
With elephants. Attila drives his chariots south
inspiring concert halls
Of future profiteers and Shermans
with a thousand bonfires to the sea.
The streets of Ord,
Nebraska rest with apathetic sycophants that speak of holocausts
among the Czechs back home while calmly nesting through it all.
To they who will in time read pages to the right,
We see the facts and figurative interpolation for a future night
Of chimæras distracting wallflowers at the mall with outraged calls
To arms against a swarm of pharaohs
that were never there to drown
Or talk of how a string of street gangs
brought the tallest buildings down.
Hitler’s mother’s eyes were modestly disguised
As she was wont to gaze at him intently―
Someone dear forgot to tell him something. Veils we re rent
At last in her and visible restraints she’d only vaguely exercised
Along with patience at the table―a little late for her and most of us.
And in that first November Kristallnacht,
there came the tests, malevolent,
The spark and germ of newly minted acolytes of thunder
scarcely banning headlines of a covenant
Between their suit of clubs and diamonds over hearts
and using spades in all that fuss.
No one knew, of course, but all applauded;
wreathes in memory hang proudly now on every door
Along with ribbons and a vision of some future August mushroom
there along an Asian shore.
Dissent, perhaps, but as King Richard found
when Bolingbroke was crowned,
“The truth is one, the ignorant have but multiplied…”;
the stage is primed for clowns
And living puppets, the genuine anointed;
the exorcised are those who’ve gone before
Disguised in crowds and adulation,
what amounts to flatulence within the masses
Pulling strings to serve a braying herd of half a million asses.

“Suppose the Action”

“Suppose the Action”

Suppose the action to be a trapezoid
When witnessed by an audience or seen
By overweening others through the brilliance of a screen;
The traffic of public view that makes it so must be avoided
If potentials and potencies of action reach
Beyond the drawing board or to the other side,
Beyond the nose; beyond the ebbing tides
Of critical mass of thought that flow from one beach
To another trapped within the atrophy of single minds or <i>there,</i>
Beneath, in morbid sinks. Mass produced in spools of social thought
That come in every season, easily plagiarised, easily bought
In legions of self-help manuals basking in the bourgeois glare
Of hucksters spinning books and gurus peddling wares,
Satisfaction wilts with public notice at a fair.
But gardens flourish with the healer’s touch,
As beauty sees the soil and is well pleased.
And who does not delight his God with ease
In humble planting, and in the tender care of so much
Bounty shared within the house beyond its door that
Shares in plenty for the harvest within a glance,
Effortlessly, and then some. Growth and substance
Between the fallow ground and the loving farmer’s cap
And care provide the essence of returning routine rapture.
Yes! And, more. The man who plants the seed
Will live without his gathering and all his needs
Are satisfied as he stands and in himself; he captures
What is blessed with anxious gratitude in the hand
That feeds the multitudes from recreated spoils in the land.

“Relax, You’ll Get the Point in Time”

“Relax, You’ll Get the Point in Time”

Relax, you’ll get the point in time, and so I did that thing.

The longest hour stretched to endless days, the days
To weeks, the weeks turned vapid, delayed to patience frayed
Through scattered years, decades, and still the sting
Remains and the same drawn phrases, the declarations,
Statements, hackneyed principles, treasured
Piracy of imitation above experience, measured
Nothings by the annotated many, trifles in maturation.
No, the weight of numbers owes its audacity
Not so much to truth but to conspiracy and imprecation
And little or nothing to fact. Whether in the family or the nation,
The issue’s not found within the visible exoskeleton but veracity
In the flesh, not the gown but the woman and damned if anyone cares to know
Reality from Dover Beach or even beans
unless his last name’s Arnold or Thoreau.

“From Chaos”

“From Chaos”

From chaos comes ordre; it’s a promise
Not a threat, and see to it that you heed
A willing radiance, an acquiescence, the need
For civility in the journey from initial surprise
To final recognition, from knowledge in the eyes
And from the illumined page while both are lost in wanderlust and steal
Away to what for all the world seems
Neither here nor there. Umbrage seeds both choice and compromise
As winter’s cold surrounds the heart’s dissatisfaction,
colder still than death
Itself and not at all to anyone’s liking. Where do joys of spring
Lead but to sorrows in the coming fall and from that fall, the season’s
Proceeds, naked trunks and brittle branches, reason
Feeding hollow hopes and simple traffic in dreams? What’s left,
My friend, but bones of separation
in the present and reunion in eternity?
There’s the simple intelligence of the thing, the weight
Of common sense told in an instant blessed and in good time. Hearts
And minds, judgments weighted solely on the flattery of the arts
And sciences and beyond mere annual Disney harvests
de temps en temps of maudlin myth in escrow. A state
Of mind, a cosmic frieze born of worlds allied
Within the sanctity of sanity seeks the safer corner
Of anonymity and the warmth of former
Aphorisms mouthed, perhaps, but never really qualified
Till now. They will say, “Come hither, pull the trigger,
Garner nothing less than what is guessed
And leave the rest!” and, yes, they see it at its best
Because its freshly minted, postage paid
For anyone who’s never been there or knows no history;
To the wise, simplicity; to the ignorant, one more misery.

“So Simple”

“So Simple”

So simple seen at dawn so long delayed, Venus and the moon! Brighter
Than I’ve ever seen them, veiled perhaps to purpose
through the willful blindness of my years,
What was it that I remembered to forget? Either eye–when both were clear
And unobstructed–saw visions in the nightly flight to lighter
Skies, at sunset drawn the more to intimate sensations in the rites or
Worshiping he more immediate, stated immaculately, requiring little fear,
An unobstructed view of objects seen as “closer than they appear
Within the mirror?”…or were they ever there at all? I know no delight now nor
Fascination in the company of others of the present age,
The illuminati of so many conversations in the next booth just the other day,
Before the show and afterward, hushed and heavy harsh realities
Of lamps without their shades, the universal fade to cold formalities
Of “I don’t know, though!” or “Whatever…” from the blossom’s buds whose age
Belies their gravitas and whose will
does not beget transaction before they’re paid
And praised. Then again, does either ancient luminary care
so long as they’ve been there
Abiding cycles, overriding climes in rhymes of violence and certain gain
With equal expectation of loss as dross in equal certainty within successive reigns
Of terror in the skies just beyond the puny girth of earth’s thin atmosphere?
How much it was the same when Caesar’s designated revisions of the year
Bore both his names and title in the gilded monthly lists in vain
Presumption that the sun, itself, may be detained or entertained
When will and means conspire to light their fires in cold banality,
idols worshipped through applause and semi-automatic Coliseum cheers;
Both wolves salivate in time. Reflect on just how long this weary place
Has been the seat and capitol of colossal vain imaginings, the necromancy
Of the rich, the bloated tales and tools of millennia of astrology in the armoury;
How often have bucolic Virgils and Octavians stumbled onto history’s
Urban stage, the first to taste the fruits of history’s tired storylines, effacing
Iconoclasts by default, gluttony of hubris at last embraced in fresh portfolios
forged from fatigue and blatant moral bankruptcy.