Tag: poetry

No good?


a peak at lyrics from upcoming new music from Tom Waits.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2011/no-good/

Trying to Pray

Trying to Pray

This time, I have left my body behind me, crying
In its dark thorns.
There are good things in this world.
It is dusk.
It is the good darkness
Of women’s hands that touch loaves.
The spirit of a tree begins to move.
I touch leaves.
I close my eyes, and think of water.

— James Wright

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2010/trying-to-pray/

A Presence

the presence of the
tree provides the nourishing
words the mushroom needs

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2010/a-presence/

Last Letter

From this Channel 4 news report

Jonathan Pryce reads a newly rediscovered poem by Ted Hughes where he imagines his wife’s last night before her suicide.

A devastatingly beautiful intimate poem, not originally included in his Birthday Letters collection (though I imagine it will be added to a new edition).

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2010/last-letter/

Humpday Haiku: LA Freeways

hit the brakes! avoid
the woman switching lanes
with me still beside.

Ah…driving in LA, always an adventure.  Do the holidays make us drive worse?  Today’s near miss was at least the 4th time in the past couple weeks where someone has attempted to change lanes despite the presence of my vehicle next to them.  Most of the time, they realize their blunder and quickly move back to their lane.  But the woman driving the Jeep today, just kept coming, completely oblivious (at least by appearances), never fully switching into my lane and cutting off the person who was in front of her in her original lane.  To be fair…I did this to a motorcyclist myself in the past couple weeks, but he was sitting in my blind spot splitting lanes.  I was driving the vanpool minivan.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/humpday-haiku-la-freeways/

Humpday Haiku: For Grandpas…

fall grieves the loss of
family covering earth
with tearfull leaves

ahh…the best laid plans.  I had intended to make this a weekly feature with the posting of the first haiku on Nov 4th.  But then I was called to jury duty and the past two Wednesdays were my only days in the office (and therefore quite busy).

This weeks haiku is inspired by Alicia’s grandpa, Stan, who passed away last week, my grandpa, Harold, who taught me what it meant to love (and passed away in August 1991), and my other grandpa, Mike, who is facing the upcoming second anniversary of my grandma’s death.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/humpday-haiku-for-grandpas/

Humpday Haiku: A Foggy Day

fog filled mornings a
reminder so. cal. summers
do indeed relent

I’ve decided I need to get back to a habit of writing more.  Both on this blog and in general.  So to help kickstart this goal, I’m going to start posting a haiku every Wednesday on the blog.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/humpday-haiku-a-foggy-day/



Sweet Jesus, talking
   his melancholy madness,
      stood up in the boat
         and the sea lay down,

silky and sorry.
   So everybody was saved
      that night
         But you know how it is

when something
   different crosses
      the threshold–the uncles
         mutter together,

the women walk away,
   the young brother begins
      to sharpen his knife.
         Nobody knows what the soul is.

It comes and goes
   like the wind over the water–
      sometimes, for days,
         you don’t think of it.

Maybe, after the sermon,
   after the multitude was fed,
      one or two of them felt
         the soul slip forth

like a tremor of pure sunlight,
   before exhaustion,
      that wants to swallow everything,
         gripped their bones and left them

miserable and sleepy,
   as they are now, forgetting
      how the wind tore at the sails
         before he rose and talked to it–

tender and luminous and demanding
   as he always was–
      a thousand times more frightening
         than the killer sea.

            –Mary Oliver from House of Light

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/maybe/

On Beauty

On Beauty

No, we could not itemize the list
of sins they can’t forgive us.
The beautiful don’t lack the wound.
It is always beginning to snow.

Of sins they can’t forgive us
speech is beautifully useless.
It is always beginning to snow.
The beautiful know this.

Speech is beautifully useless.
They are the damned.
The beautiful know this.
They stand around unnatural as statuary.

They are the damned
and so their sadness is perfect,
delicate as an egg placed in your palm.
Hard, it is decorated with their face

and so their sadness is perfect.
The beautiful don’t lack the wound.
Hard, it is decorated with their face.
No, we could not itemize the list.

Cape Cod, May 1974

— Nick Laird (via On Beauty by Zadie Smith)

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/on-beauty/

The Government

from Saul William’s email list:


We have overcome.

Except those of us now in Gaza. Except those of us whom police kill. Except those of us who are suspects. Except those of us whom the church hate. Except those of us damned to taste good. Except those of us held by fate. We are meeting in the capitol. Word is, freedom will not wait.

All that once was never shall be.
All they could do won’t be done.
All we sang of is now happening.

[note to self:]
Must write
new songs
to become…

…And so it was. Through the collective imagination of the people, the force of will and human potential, and an unflinching ability to hold himself to task, Niggy Tardust was liberated. His ability to see beyond the boundaries and obstacles of ‘genre’, ‘race’, and suppression, allowed him to encompass a grace and sound that embodied the all. All that had stood against him, now stood with him. All that had claimed a lesser harmony, now craved voice and resonance. He stood with poets, painters, dancers, students, children of the night who had transformed themselves into a million bright ambassadors of morning, and proclaimed,

“We declare declaratives and deny the official. Based in the landmark of the G-spot, we have overtaken ourselves and overthrown our forefathers. Let there be light within the light and let it answer to the name of Darkness. We are forever risen from the deadly: the anti-virus and the All Stars. Granted power by forces unbeknownst to us. Made in the likeness of kindness. We offer anger to the angry and fear to the fearful. We dance at our own funerals to forsake the mourners…

…This is no time to cry! This is no time at all! Here is the moment of the overlooked and the unforeseeable. We are the elected officials of the people: poets and artists. We are the declarative statement of the inarticulate, the irreparably damaged goods of the bad meaning good. We are the government! We are the government! We are the government!”

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/the-government/