Monday, May 26, 2014

Upon The Sea of Anarchy, Canto IV

Canto III

Canto IV

I now know legislation does not make
An action more legitimate. I fooled
Myself, believed that lie. And for the sake
Of my own soul, I seek to make it up
To those I sought to suffer and to quake

Before my own self-righteousness.
I’m humble now. As humble as a pup
Or as the birds you see above. They press
Against the blue – their white and black is all
We see. You see the albatross caress

The sky – it rarely lands. The sea gulls thrive
Here on our floating island. Hear the call
Of black-capped terns? And when we do arrive
Near shore, we see the pelicans. Your sight
Is good: each bird is white and black. You’ll strive

In vain to see a green or red. White blends
Into the clouds, essential white on white
On ozone blue. The albatross, it spends
Its life on air, and there seems elegant –
Perhaps because he floats above, befriends

No other bird, and never lands. And my
Impression’s not my own alone; my sentiment
Is shared, and so a law’s emerged to try
To stay all human hands or weapons aimed
Against that awesome bird. I won’t deny

We punish people for it. We will shame
The one who brings the albatross down, maimed
Or dead. For shame coordinates us – name
A social value, shame coordinates
Them all. And thus we never tame

With ossifying legislation’s maw.
We live our social lives and have debates
When we are faced with any social flaw.
At worst we’ll call on judges to decide –
But social life is ruled by common law.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Engine Block

I like to put my poems in a box --
That's how they know just what to do. They bash
Their lines against the sides, and each one knocks
And knocks until a rhyme is made. They crash

Against the walls and tangle up. They crave
Their other lines and interact in sounds
That, when they all reverberate, they wave
In rhythms to make meaning without bounds.

Yet, should we not set free our poetry?
Let lines flow off the page if that's their wish?
And surely all we poets must agree
That rules are like a pomegranate fish.

Is beauty in the randomness of fools --
Or rather in the freedom made by rules?

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


The swordfish steak steams dew upon the dish,
A dash of dill, a dip of fig, the lights
Are dim to help me dig out of the din
That fills my life. A champagne fizz ignites
A will to fit into the fissures in
This life, to ditch all that I did, and wish.

* I wrote this poem based on this.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Fitting In

I must pretend to be the kind of mind
I'm not if others are to let me play
Or work. I have to hide myself and bind
Myself if I'm to find myself one day

Included by a world who thinks of me
As having a disease or deficit
Because I take their words literally,
Because the way I'd like to be won't fit

Their narrow view of normalcy, because
I think their smalltalk dull and want to talk
Instead (and endlessly) about the laws
Of nature and complexity. They balk

At my obsessions, wonder why I sit
Alone and rarely want to interact,
And wonder why I do not care to fit
With them, but rather work.If I lack tact,

It is because I see through the veneer
Of tribal signals, seen for what they are.
I wlll not lie, expect it from each peer --
Naively, every time. Can I go far

When everyone demands conformity
And I cannot conform? My mind's not theirs,
My brain's not structured so. My certainty
Is seen as arrogance. All of this wears

Me down, this acting I must do each day,
Pretending I am them, and failing at
The task each day. But if I don't, then they
Exclude me or, worse, treat me like a gnat.

And so I must pretend to be the kind
Of mind I'm not because I cannot shirk
Responsibility -- so I must find
A balance so that I can live and work.

Friday, May 2, 2014

Philosopher, Poet, Lover

Too often I'm a mere philosopher --
I'd rather be a teacher, telling deeds
And actions, showing fates and rules, confer
With deity in ways you can infer
The truth of things off of these phonic beads.

But who will let the poet sing the light
To them? Delight is found in simple things --
Complexity brings very few delight --
And simplifying but brings on the night,
Reducing everything to cosmic strings.

But what of love? Combined of chemistry,
Neurology, and culture -- these the hems
That make the dress of such complexity
As love and other forms of great beauty
That glitter, shine as this small planet's gem.