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Old April 27th, 2001, 01:39 PM   #16
Lou
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Ah, how to choose a poem to share. I used to love the chat room poetry readings for exactly this reason--there was always next week to choose another poem.

On Sunday, I am going with friends to the L.A. Times Festival of Books at UCLA. There will be miles of booths and books, authors signing, and readings. I am looking forward to hearing a reading by a poet who has long been a favorite of mine--Ai. Her given name is Florence Anthony, and her poems are erotic and violent. I have to choose carefully which I set down here for you. :-0 And tomorrow, during the drive into L.A., my friends have asked that I read a few of her poems to them so they can be ready to hear her reading. Now, hmmm. This is risky business. I like these friends, but they are apt to respond to certain poems with "Ewwwww!" If that happens, we can't be friends anymore. ROFL Here's a suitably controlled Ai poem for you all . . .

<b>The Widow</b>

After I burn the boar's carcass,
I fill the slop bucket
and the old sow gets up,
grunting from deep inside,
where the piglets, just beginning to wake,
are already smelling the sour food,
and stretching their pink toes toward me.

As I dump the slop into the trough,
the sow rubs her snout against my leg
and I kneel, pushing my head through
to the muddy side of her body.
I touch her teat with my tongue.
She grunts and I climb over the fence.
I sink down on my side
in the mud, the wet, black cotton of the earth,
as my wife calls. No, not my wife, the woman.
I don't say anything.
How can I tell her he will never come?
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Old April 27th, 2001, 07:57 PM   #17
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Ohhh ((((Lou))))) that one's kinda sad.

But very striking. And yes, I miss Poetry Chat too.
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Old May 23rd, 2001, 02:28 PM   #18
Lou
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Adrienne Rich

<b>Miracle Ice Cream</b>

Miracle's truck comes down the little avenue,
Scott Joplin ragtime strewn behind it like pearls,
and, yes, you can feel happy
with one piece of your heart.

Take what's still given: in a room's rich shadow
a woman's breasts swinging lightly as she bends.
Early now the pearl of dusk dissolves.
Late, you sit weighing the evening news,
fast-food miracles, ghostly revolutions,
the rest of your heart.

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Old June 1st, 2001, 12:50 AM   #19
Lou
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Lawrence Ferlinghetti

from <b>The Coney Island of the Mind</b>

The pennycandystore beyond the El
is where I first
fell in love
with unreality
Jellybeans glowed in the semi-gloom
of that september afternoon
A cat upon the counter moved among
the licorice sticks
and tootsie rolls
and Oh Boy Gum

Outside the leaves were falling as they died

A wind had blown away the sun

A girl ran in
Her hair was rainy
Her breasts were breathless in the little room

Outside the leaves were falling
and they cried
Too soon! too soon!
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Old September 27th, 2001, 12:13 PM   #20
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This is something short that made me smile. I think it must be written from the point of view of the family dog.

Mystery of the Sphinx
by Cathy Smith Bowers
http://www.theatlantic.com/unbound/p...ers/sphinx.htm
.....
"Marsh," Gabe would softly say and nod
toward the Red
Baron lazing
by a sunny

windowsill. She'd turn from her book
to take a look,
then both begin
to chuckle in

sheer delight. I'd look up too, but
all I saw? Fat
cat on a chair
just lying there.
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Old June 4th, 2002, 02:06 PM   #21
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Women
by
May Swenson

Women should be pedestals
moving pedestals
moving to the motions of men

Or they should be little horses
those wooden
sweet
oldfashioned
painted
rocking horses
the gladdest things
in the toyroom

The pegs of their ears
so familiar and dear
to the trusting fists
to be chafed

feelingly
and then
unfeelingly
To be joyfully ridden
rockingly ridden
until the restored
egos dismount and the legs
stride away

Immobile
sweetlipped sturdy
and smiling
women
should always be
waiting

willing
to be set
into motion
Women
should be
pedestals
to men
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Old June 5th, 2002, 05:03 PM   #22
kathe nichols
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School Prayer
by Diane Ackerman

In the name of the daybreak
and the eyelids of morning
and the wayfaring moon
and the night when it departs,

I swear I will not dishonor
my soul with hatred,
but offer myself humbly
as a guardian of nature,
as a healer of misery,
as a messenger of wonder,
as an architect of peace.

In the name of the sun and its mirrors
and the day that embraces it
and the cloud veils drawn over it
and the uttermost night
and the male and the female
and the plants bursting with seed
and the crowning seasons
of the firefly and the apple,

I will honor all life
--wherever and in whatever form
it may dwell--on Earth my home,
and in the mansions of the stars.

>From "I Praise My Destroyer," 1998.
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Old February 1st, 2003, 09:15 PM   #23
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Hi all. The Columbia space shuttle trajedy hit me hard today. I was working at JPL, a NASA facility, when the Challenger exploded in 1986, and today's events brought it all back to me full-force.<p>
I want to post the classic pilots' eulogy in tribute to the 2 women and 5 men who died in the space shuttle Columbia crash today. It was originally written for pilots by a pilot, but it still seems to apply. Sad though it certainly is, it still makes me feel a little better. Hope it helps you, too.<p>
"High Flight"<p>

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth<br>
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;<br>
Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth<br>
Of sun-split clouds - and done a hundred things<br>
You have not dreamed of - wheeled and soared and swung<br>
High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there,<br>
I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung<br>
My eager craft through footless halls of air.<br>
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue<br>
I've topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace<br>
Where never lark, or even eagle flew -<br>
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod<br>
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,<br>
Put out my hand and touched the face of God.<p>

John Gillespie Magee, Jr.
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Old February 1st, 2003, 11:09 PM   #24
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That's beautiful {{{{biker}}}}

Thank you.
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Old February 2nd, 2003, 06:45 PM   #25
DLC55
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If I'm not mistaken, that's the one Dan Rather recited yesterday in a very emotionally charged voice while they showed pictures of the astronauts.
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Old April 10th, 2003, 06:12 PM   #26
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Some poems by Turkish poet Orhan Veli, 1916-1950


PRO PATRIA

What have we not done
For our mother-
Land;
Some of us died;
Some gave speeches.

Orhan Veli
Translated by Murat Nemet-Nejat, 1989



FOR FREE

We are living for free;
The air is for free, the clouds are for free.
Hills and dales are for free;
Rain and mud are for free;
The outside of cars,
The entrance to movie houses,
The store windows are for free;
It is not the same as bread and cheese,
But salt water is for free;
Freedom will cost you your life,
But slavery is for free;
We are living for free,
For free.
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Old April 10th, 2003, 06:26 PM   #27
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Oh those are nice! Died way too young.
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Old April 10th, 2003, 10:26 PM   #28
Lou
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A poem from the English poet Wilfred Owen, 1893-1918

<b>Dulce Et Decorum Est</b>

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.

Gas! Gas! Quick, boys!-An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime...
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,-
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: <i>Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.</i>
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Old April 10th, 2003, 11:14 PM   #29
Cod
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Very moving Lou. Even more so after learning that the poet did lose his life in battle. Thanks, Lou.
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Old April 11th, 2003, 02:12 AM   #30
Lou
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Hiya Cod. Funny to meet you here.

Had Wilfred Owen not died in WW I, T.S. Eliot would be a footnote in the back of a high school anthology.

More poems! More poems! I love a good slam.
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