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Long poem by Neldy Jolo | Details |

THE CRAFT CAN CAPTURE IT

Oh well I got an angry email to begin my day
Because of my last post on the Jabidah thing yesterday
Galit sa akin but greeted me with Assalamu alaykum.
And kung personal Moro friends ko naman ito 
They know I don't criticize Moro leaders
I always leave that to them to criticize their leaders
According to my friends baka nasa gubyerno or something
Next time I'll write na lang about the sea and the palm trees and the beaches 

Pray and pray nalang para walang provocation
ako nga ang daming nag-message sa akin nagalit sa issue ng Sabah standoff
Ikaw pa kaya na wala namanng masama na sinabi dun
Alam mo ‘buti na lang you verbalized that kasi iniisip ko rin ‘yun
I know you have reasons and you know better kaya; I just read your posts
I don’t have to go against parties kasi both have rights
And the issue must be solved

Wala, kasi sa akin kundi independence lamang ang kailangan
May ganyan din kasing realities? 
Minsan you are being asked or expected to take sides
Yes, my side is peace – with peace is independence
Yes, I heard that sa dating Jabidah Massacre celebration
Somebody said that, “Walang kapayapaan kasi walang kalayaan”
And that is very universal, kapatid.

Moro or non-Moro and writing should always geared towards humanity
That’s why for me it “anti-humanity” if you will not listen 
Or suppress when somebody will talk about freedom.
That’s the problem with Filipinos, they don't listen.
Kasi the leaders may sarili ring interests.

How do you see being Filipino?
Ako, it's a cage, Filipino nationalism 
Agenda ng mga oligarchs and landowners 
Filipino nationalism is violence against Muslims and lumads
Kasi ‘pag ako ang tatanunginmo I will never say I am Filipino
Because Tausug it’s not a name but an identity...
I understand but kaunti na lang kayo

Ako sasabihin ko na I am a Filipino but I have reservations
When I was a teenager hindi ako tumatayo ‘pag Lupang Hinirang
ngayon tumatayo na kasi napapaaway ang mga kasama ko sa sinehan
Yes and identity should be critically assessed and examined.
Kaya if they say Filipino ang mga Tausug masakit sa aking loob
But not all, kapatid. try mo pumunta sa Manila
Yung mga Moro na malalapit sa mga institusyon ng Pilipinas
Bakit iba ang Moro at ibang ang Tausug
kaya sila naging Moro at masaya na tawaging Moro 

May identity na naiiba sa Filipino
Pinag-aaralan ko rin yan and ino-observe ‘yung pag-yield sa 'Filipino'
‘Will give Filipinos a disservice
Because it is tantamount to be an accomplice to a corrupt system
And this system is the one that oppresses Muslims
At alam natin ang Tausug di lamang taga-Sulu
Pati Bisayan, Tausug din

As much as possible I am trying to make my writings 'away' 
Away from Filipino nationalism
That's the right way for me and my writing
I will ask first, “How it is to be human?” 
At super last na ang, “How to be a Filipino” 
And the Bangsamoro struggle is the greatest critique to the violence
And failures of Filipino nationalism

Ang problema kasi kaya di successful ang Bangsamoro struggle
Dahil nagdadala sila ng pangalan na di naman originally sa kanila
How come ang pangalan ko ay Abdul sa rights
Gagamitn ko ang Juan para sa aking bayan?
Kaya war of ideas ito and alam mo naman sa akin, ‘pag ideas 
And perspectives walang kompromiso and peace talks 

I do not compromise my language, my craft and myself, my writing
Filipino is an imagined nation, as well as Bangsamoro
Bakit di natin magamit ang orignal nation natin 
Na based sa Sulu archipelago and Mindanao
Yes, actually diyan ako papunta - papunta

Bakit hindi i-Bangsamoro-ized ang buong Filipinas?
It doesn’t mean na i-convert ang Pilipinas 
But the spirit, the struggle it should mean something to Filipinos
It should kasi ang dami na nagbuwis ng buhay
Kaya ko pa na tanggapin kung Maharlika

‘Yan ang gusto kong ma-achieve: Filipinos should listen to Moros
Siyempre marami pang madidiscover along the way
Indeed. Ikaw ba ‘pag sasabahin ko na ‘Tausug’ ano ang maiisip mo?
Tausug is Moro and Moro for me is something that predates 'Filipino'
But now, I would like to know the concept of “Lupah Sug”
I want to know it, I think there are more and beyond Moro on it

Before ‘Moro’ was named to Mindanao and Sulu people
It was first name to Aceh people, Melaka, Brunei and then Manila
Sulu and Mindanao were the last places to have been called the name ‘Moro’
Sulu archipelago was united under the name Sulu archipelago 
The name of people is Tausug. 
Tausug is composed of different ethnics:
Arab, Banjar, Dampuan, Buranun etcetera.
The concept of Sulu as part of dar al islam 
Is already a nation and state 
Where the government is the people and itself headed by sultan or raja

Yes, and I would like to feel this from the ordinary Tausugs when I get there
I would like to experience this from ordinary Tausug and on from place itself.
In the hinterland of Jolo, their laws still on the ground not of Philippine law

I believe in narratives
I want to hear and feel this from the place and from the people.
And then capture it; I have these thoughts 
That Lupah Sug has something that the Moro concept does not have
And it’s a bit metaphysical but sige lang.

I know my craft can capture it.
I think there is a language that can capture it 
And specific craft that can carry its soul
Not fictionalize but put it in a form like a novel or a narrative
Which have their own logic and truths as crafts.






This poem is made after the conversation and sharing with Filipino writer Rogelio Braga who also serves as the editor of the poem. He is currently in Mindanao, travelling and writing; he will then proceed to Sulu Archipelago soon. 2:28PM, 19 March 2013, Facebook Chat across Sulu Sea!


Long poem by Funom Makama | Details |

He said, I said

How the housefly gets attracted to organic decay and an infant child traces the voice of its mother are nothing compared to the intense attraction Michelle and I possess on the guy owning not a strand of hair on his head but is in command of all forms of feminine arousal Our weakness was too glaring; our lust, too embarrassing the chance to act rare and expensive we've lost. All we've got is to dance to the tune of his authority as he smiled and consented to our 'not so hidden' desires. Now, he walks straight at us his every step, an additional load on me I seem to carry the entire solar system on my chest. My heartbeat, pulsations and breath are as loud as a live rock band "I've never seen you here is this your first time?"......... He said "Yeah, actually!".................. I said. My friend and I responded simultaneously our answers gushing out like a group of running horses, mine seem to carry more weight as it tames any challenge from hers. "So, how did two love Angels fall in such an unworthy place as this?"......... He said "How unworthy?"........................................... I Said. I've championed the game of words and emotions and just as what inevitably defines the day is sunlight so is my testament. Michelle showed glimpse of disapproval to my replies but my exclamation of her name gave adequate caution. "yes, this place is unworthy, because I need to pass through seven Oceans and seven hills to see someone like you"........... He said. "Then you'll never find me there. I'm not a specie going extinct." ............................ I Said. The gods of luck have smiled on the Lions once again in preference to other cats. The father of favour, shaking hands with the Eagle while by-passing the other birds. This is my exact situation as jealousy builds a castle in my friend's heart. "So, what's your name, sweet damsel?"...... He said. "Anna"........................................................ I said. This is a familiar routine, his plan is as detectable and as obvious as watered grass but letting it turn green is what I must not allow so that the security of my reputation is not compromised. "Anna is a lovely name, do you like poker?"........ He said. "No, I don't!"........... I said. The looks of my friend, spoke 'awe' mine replied in aggression then she flowed in complete understanding on its message on not acting cheap especially to the one we've shown so much likeness. "So what do you like?".......................He said. "Going out to the Cinema or the beach or engaging in salsa".......................... I said. Already scoring goals and dominating the game, I felt my opponent was completely toothless and flattened. But playing along is my aim to make him beg on his knees which adds to my fame. "Can we try any of those sooner?"......................... He said. "How do you mean?"............................................... I said. Another punch brings about another shield and sometimes a strong defence feels more fulfilling than a heavy attack. "Let's go out to the movies this night"............. He said. "I'm busy tonight!"........................................... I said. It feels like punishment to him but he takes it like a challenge and this keeps me far from winning. Being on top is my birth right and a step lower is deemed a sacrilege. "What about going to the beach this weekend?".................. He said "I'll be out of town"................................................................. I said. Persistence could be rewarding but my protective walls are just too thick for any form of penetration; too high for any form of infiltration and too deep for any form of condemnation. "Then, when would you be free to teach me Salsa?"............................ He said. "I'm not stable, neither can I determine my free time"..................... I said. The game of attack and defense is never absolute as the attacker may fall victim of a rare counter attack or the defender, gets wary of his defense with no chance to pull an offensive string. Either, ending up as the vanquish despite the brilliant strategies being set up. "Michelle, are you also unstable like Anna?"...... He said "What!"............................................................... I said. Envy plans on a historic transfer while my friend poised not an aota of difficulty and this makes me extremely furious. She was just at the corner waiting for this opportunity and even before it avails itself, she snatches it into her well guided belongings. Looking at both in confusion and disappointment; they share contacts and crack jokes. "I'll give you a call this evening".................. He said Nothing I said because now, Michelle is running the show.


Long poem by Goutam Hazra | Details |

Scent of Paddy Flower

Scent Of Paddy Flower

                                   By Goutam Hazra

           1
Reminiscence

My father told me 
first time 
I was just a boy then,
“Follow the scent of paddy flower
move with the wind it carries,
surely you will go to heaven.”

I remember
he would catch 
fistful of wind
bring near to my face
and wonder,
“Isn’t it godly!”

Magically, opened his hand
but I never felt
what scent he meant.
            
             2
Days of kind rain

“Son, see the misty wind
rushing all over the paddy field
comes every year
to drink the scent of paddy flower.”

Mere as a boy
I could see only
tides of a green plane
touching my little finger
and racing far… too far.
I would ask  
“Where have they gone?”
Smiled my father 
and said
“Did not you listen,
they are going to heaven,
call the goddess then,
‘come goddess dear’
we all are ready with paddy flower.”




Curious was my face,
“Papa, then?”

“Goddess will arrive smiling
her feet will be here
there
everywhere.
Seeing a pot in her hand
all those paddy flowers
delighted, will open their mouth more wider
and life will be poured…”

“Where these flowers come from?”

Remained my father smiling
speaking all his mind
looking high at sky
asked me to see there
spoke he again.

“Rain, rain, kind monsoon rain
on the first day of its shower
kind rain would ask me to come here
with bagful of paddy seeds,
‘let seeds be spread all over,
let its eternal relation with soil
be the fertilizer’
when all said is done
waiting rain 
starts showering its kind
make visible hiding life in the abyss of seed.
Happy wind changes color
being green all around
waits for the day
when the wind would smell the scent of paddy flower.”

Days passed by,
kind rain was still in waiting
sometimes hidden beyond horizon
or simply making sun blind with its smoky face
and whenever wind said,
‘Dry I’m now’
quenched the thirst.

Someday wind played naughty with sun
asked kind rain to make it misty
and with brushes of sun rays 
painted a rainbow on the face of east sky.


Wait was over
green field blossomed with flowers
and wind said,
“Fill in my heart
with scent of flower
I shall bring life…”

Happy was my father’s voice
“Rain, rain, kind monsoon rain
said so
green wind brining life 
did so
scent of paddy flower
is made so.
Bare footed be here
print your soul
in the dust of this soil
kind rain will come
green wind being there
life will be yours 
beautiful
simple
with the scent of paddy flower.”
           
             3
Cruel entropy

How old was I then
nine or ten
my father looked up
up to the sky
again and again
for a month long
only to see 
change of sky’s color
from the color of a summer day to a long humid night.
Dry wind cried at last
over my father’s sweating body
“Rain, rain O kind rain, where have you gone.”

One day sudden
kind rain came again.
Cried to my father
“Why no green wind came this year
from ocean 
to bring me here.
Desert wind why
dry my breath
seeds you have sown
how could I then
enliven with my rain.”

Question 
many question
my father had asked the rain.

Short-lived, hurried rain could spell its last breath,
“I am not that rain 
as was your friend,
I am the curse of dying forest
I am the ghost of all pollution
I am born out of acid weather…”

Who knew, it left for where?

My father cried 
As kind rain left him alone
hiding in a dry wind’s bone.

My father was still
going every morning
asking the soil
in vain
if soil could alone
make the paddy flowers to be born.

Year passed by,
came back the time, 
for green wind to bring kind rain.

Rain came one day.

But why
as a cloudburst
treacherous
roaring always
pouring unwanted
like an unkind monster
flooded misery
in the life of a simple farmer?
           
            4
Relinquishment

Dumb remained my father
for days together
sad was his voice at last,
“Run away, son, run away from here,
sky rain wind
river village land;
thread of this garland
who cuts it
go, stop now there hand.”

Draught and flood,
uncertainty of life 
changed my mind 
as of a farmer’s son.
Books, studies and education
reasons, truth and compassion
might have had fulfilled my father’s mission.

But… 
Does not this civilization
converts us 
as the products to do more production.
Run, run and run 
run ahead of time
let be it, at the cost of inhaling killer tension,
stress taking  over your life.
Insomnia, cholesterol or cynicism
is our success’s companion? 
‘A’ is shaped as ‘B’
and ‘B’ is sold as ‘C’.
Modification
innovation
sophistication
but I found the basic
what it remain
as life’s supreme conviction 
‘simply a fist full of paddy
and its grain’.

             5
Scent of life

So here, I am again
standing in front of this green plane
searching for the shadow of my father.
Green wind surrounds my existence
I can see the dance of those bunches.
My mind whispers to my ear
echoes those words of my father, 
“Bare footed be here
print your soul
in the dust of this soil
rain will come
green wind being there
life will be yours 
beautiful
simple
with the scent of paddy flower.”

I never felt so,
what I smell now 
is the scent of paddy flower.




















Long poem by T Wignesan | Details |

Is there an Exclusive All-in-One Principle

        
  ‘ In general, quantum mechanics does not predict a single definite result for an observation. Instead, it predicts a number of  different possible outcomes and tells us how likely each of these is. ‘

 
Which side of the Wolf-coin are we looking at

                  the red or the green

           
                                 nothing then is certain

not even death but the life one endures

             
 quarks protons neutrons electrons bosons

particles like men and beings in general

                                             bathe not necessarily in the same lifeless soup

         great teachers or rather teachers with great followings

     those that always attract those who prefer to let others do the thinking  for them

         especially through transcendentally transmitted interstellar telegraphy

                 would want us believe

                                             there’s just This One

  and all comes and goes to That Only ONE

        
If only it were just as simple as that

Then what is it that This One wants

Or is It caught up in its own caveat

And must of needs come apart

        on the seed that It alone plants

 
                           and do what we may

   nothing goes wrong

            whatever the explanation

everybody is right

right from the start

 

         Big Bang from a tight-fisted unfurling hand

         Big Crunch to a crushing tightening stranglehold

and out again

         for the Brahma Day

and after aeons the Brahma Night

 
And at the stillstanding blackhole singularity

         neither space nor time

            squeezed in and out

Birth as in Death

An eventual point of total extinction

        if ever there was one

 
Yet always the two extremes

      and the ever-changing in-betweens

Matter versus Anti-Matter

Here the Yang is not lkely to be set againt the Yin

Though matter itself is neither

Is nor Is-Not-ness

         And the 96% Dark Matter

          And the infinite number of parallel universes

Does it really matter

                                        when

 
         ‘ … if you meet your antiself, don’t shake hands !

            You would both vanish in a great flash of light.’                   

 
Vanish into what

                                    Dark matter

or just non-dark matter

 
Still the duality of matter

Still the ever-changing conundrum

 
              Everything moves jostles couples alters reproduces destructs

        self-destructs
 

         ‘Sex is emotion in motion.’

 
Emotion erupts

           into thin air

      into where

Dark air

 
Motion disrupts

         and roots one here

      tied to the lunar year

 
       why should it matter

if we cannot know the reason why

ego id libido

drive faith fame femme father future

 
if super/alter ego connects the ego

       to the collective unconscious 

     
       why drown the self in the Great Self

by wilful act

       when the Ultimate One

is the sum of all the little ones

 
Is the Original One incapable of absorbing all the ones

each of whom must move to eat drink sleep

copulate make money grow roots in a society

get and fight to keep a job

make love marry raise children

struggle to keep one’s wife one’s children        

one’s house  if one can get one

one’s career one’s future

and helter-skelter race to cheat death

 
If it’s the self-same thing that’s being born anew

What does it matter if it keeps changing in view

Of the desperate haste with which everything

We see smell hear feel intute sense

Keeps hurtling away from the Ding an Sich

And leaves us with a parochial Milky Way

Bastardised stealthily by grandiose Andromeda        

Left retrograded entwined within measely galaxy clusters 

Through some trillion cataclysmic light years

 
What’s the impulse to keep moving

Is the yogi’s stilled-centre

The death of all action

Which cannot call for a reaction

Or is the art of keeping still

Merely the art of making belief

 

          ‘…actors act out the pun that life is the art of acting

until your performed role becomes your normal character.

Then you are safe inside your character armour.’

 

As soon as you have thought It out

It turns around and re-structrures Itself inside out

                 and you know just why

                                                               don’t you now

 

References to the quotations

Stephen W. Hawking, A Brief History of Time : From the Big Bang to Black Holes, London-New York, 1988.

Ibid.

Attributed to Mae West.

Eric N. W. Mottram,  « Men & Gods : A Study of Eugene O’Neill », Encore (London), 1963.

I’m not sure the « re-structuring » bit at the end comes from
Steven Weinberg or John Gribbin, or perhaps even from Fred Allan Wolf ?

 

© T. Wignesan – Paris, 2005 ; rev. 2012. From the collection : Poems Omega-Plus, 2005.


Long poem by Tyshawn Knight | Details |

From Sunday School to Monday Morning

Once again I tip the scale
And mutter, whoever invented it was a man from hell.
It was not a woman who created weights for size
For women can look past the outer shell
And search deep for what is inside.
Men must have their cake and eat it too…
From head to toe-perfection-from hat to shoe
I dress in all white for today I must teach Sunday school
If only a man’s heart would find my food
I can shake and bake
If only on my plate would a handsome man chance to take.

The preacher gets up on the pulpit and puts on his show
Talks about the place where adulterers must go
None of us admit he is a hypocrite as we all know
For he has slept with every woman in the front row.
But, even still my pig’s feet goes from hot to cold
No matter how many ties for him I’ve sewn.
Some women have all the luck
Others like me can’t even get a look-let alone a touch
Being me, ah yes, it is too much.

Sister “Gossip” waves her fan as I go past
“Speak out loud?” would be too much to ask.
I wonder if it is my skirt that is too tight
Or whether I will be at home alone again tonight
I wonder if whatever she says about me is worth a fight
Or is it even true and right.
I pray for her soul with all my might,
I can’t let the Devil move into my mind.

People tell me I sing like a bird
Its gospel time, time to praise the Lord with words
I walk on stage to take my turn
Hands sway from side to side and my throat burns…
But the men stare at the teenager in the short skirt
And the first lady with the red dress
My curves ripple my stomach
For I am not that blessed
I have what a man wants to hear
But to lye beside me is what they all fear.

The service offered nothing by way of encouragement.
But, I have worshiped God
Even if the day was not heaven sent
I know somehow it must be time well spent.
I kiss the little children good-bye
And pretend all is joyous on the inside.
Satin-Legs Smith walks pass the church and sighs
We all know what is on his mind
Therefore though I dream of marriage he doesn’t give me the time.
He looks at me winks and a little smile.
He would only laugh if I asked him to come eat with me
For a little while.

I hang my coat in the closet
Beside a dusty wedding dress
I was wishful thinking when I bought it.
It is four sizes to small
I had planned to shrink into it by last fall.
But, too much time passed and I can’t even return it to the mall.
I can’t bring myself to put it in the trash down the hall.
I may use it for curtains or to cover the dirt stains on my front wall.

I lay myself down to sleep
And pray to the Lord my soul to keep.
And that I do not die before love I see
It is enough to at least give me hopeful dreams.

Monday comes and I have to go off to clean
For rich white people who don’t need anything.
Except for J. Alfred Prufrock
He lives on top 
Of the food chain
But he too is looking for love
We’re both the same.
He always looks at me like he has something to say
But he can’t get past his bald spot or the creases on his face.
Again I wonder should I do the flirting dance
Let him know I am available and that I can
And I will, so he will take a chance
I know he would be willing to love me still
I am not settling for second best!
He is a man!
I am a woman!
Shouldn’t we make love manifest?

I think I will give it a go
And see if I could be someone he would come to know
A fine meal some sweet potatoes and a roast
A pan of peach cobbler, such things men love the most.
I will make his house squeaky clean
Show him what he could expect if he married me.
I drive up and he is at his window
Watching his neighbors come and go
Eavesdropping on their conversations
About Michaelangelo.
And he is reading a book, Dante’s “Inferno”

“Is this for me?” when he sees the plate of food.
I nod yes and hope it gets him in the mood
He smiles, blushes and turns red.
All sorts of happy thoughts run through my head.
But still he only eats and does not speak
It seems the asking will be up to me. 
But what do I say for I do not wish to be
Considered by him, a hussy.
I ask him if he likes the movies.
He tells me he prefers plays
“I have never been to one” I say.
“Maybe I shall take you to one someday.”	
“And I will make you a German Chocolate cake.”
“I guess then it is a date.”

How should I wear my hair?  Should I sport an afro?
Or get a perm?  This is the time to use all those make up tips that I learned.
It seems I will feel the joy of being an Eve.
The birds are singing just for me.
The sun is shining, the flowers are blooming.

Will they be putting Prufrock on my tomb stone
If I do this right I won’t die alone…


Long poem by Laura Breidenthal | Details | . You can read it on PoetrySoup.com' st_url='http://www.poetrysoup.com/poem/light_on_the_devils_chord___day_3_655249' st_title='Light on the Devil's Chord - Day 3'>

Light on the Devil's Chord - Day 3

They say the one you think of last before sleep,
Is the one you care for the most— the one you wish to hold, admire, love…

The two of us…beings of bravery,
Had labored all the night, 
In harmonies livid, longing and bright…
In music so construed in golden blues…
A masterful melancholy in strange, light-stricken hues
He boldly slept, in heavy breath
As I dozed into the deafness of the demons’ wrath

I awoke, unaware of the time at hand, 
As he lay there close beside me, cradled in a beat…
I sensed morning’s marvel, thought the darkness crept
Leaving me in a sinking feeling as our Prince vainly slept

And there, with the drumming of his pulse, 
I began my morning song of Time,

“Oh, how alive she dares to smile,
In the crisp cradles of first thought
Time, with surging love for the dancing dial,
Melts our sleeper from the wars he fought

I tame her humbly in darkness doomed,
For I know the Lord shuns worry of loss
Unlimited life, craftily bloomed,
I dare paths to narrow, and I dare him to cross

Oh, how in sleep he refuses these dreams,
Of Time’s immense mercy and strength
How his eyes rest, in nightmarish filth it seems,
Tossing in pride, and I in faith

He lifts Time’s feathered mess
In an embrace he calls his own consolation
In his deranged, dreadful wilderness,
She waits in ardent resurrection…”

He began to groan in his sleep, 
Tossing and turning… 
His lids lifted, though his eyes were trapped
In a dream so unnerving and unwavering 
I could do nothing but sing again…

“Wake up in the comfort of company
As she gathers the feathers you lift,
I will see too that she is smiling
In the morning mist of bliss
Let the veils of night terror arise
So I may see the life in your eyes 
As the lizard on the rock bathes in warmth,
I suffer with you, saturating cold
Time offers space between, 
As the trees in winter soon return to green…”

He was awake, though grimacing 
Angered by my gentle push
Pissed that I sat there before him
No longer trapped in his soot…

“Time, time, time… 
You’ve bored me in your rhyme, rhyme, rhyme-
Witness wretched reality, sweetheart divine-
Then we can talk about the slut you call Time!

Bitching and raving how she has bludgeoned all these men, 
With the sweep of her arms, she crushes all condemned
She mocks me now, after screwing me naughty
Her feathers scattered across my body
I curse every morning I see her face
I love how she beats me, and then demands embrace
I hate her, woman, as I hate you
I lift her to throw her down,
As the cockcrows coo…

I am in Time, over Time, beyond Time
Cross in her spirit—frail in her rhyme
If your Lord has taken anxiety from your heart,
Have him take your innocence—now that is her art!”

He laughed, cackling loudly,
And the demons chiseled,
The soot on the ground grew hot and sizzled

My lips moistened with tears…
“I thought about how strangely you slept,
Even in your bitterness for dwindling Time…
In our last notes before drifting, 
I thought of you,
And all the days we have left
I want you to know my light is kind,
And we can all learn in the rhythm of Time
She is very sensitive, 
She weeps at every loss, 
Though secretly, though in day she boldly stands
At night she lets down her hair and grieves demands
For not everyone can she save,
Truth it be, she has saved no one
But has inspired men to the end…
No one knows Time better than God
And yes, you too must know her well, 
She labors as we sleep
Though she would be hesitant to tell…
She destroys…though inward she heals
She sees potential, though leaves the action
To the one who truly feels…”

“Stop singing in riddles and nonsense…” He sputtered
“If sleep is so important to you, 
Why do you force me awake?”

He sat up, quaking, his anger loud
I shuttered in his presence, looking down

“Just… sing with me…..”

And we sang…

“She is cruel, 
She is patient,
Living in darkness and in light, 
I rest her in my trust,
And I in my ceaseless bite
I lull her,
I seduce her,
She calls me, 
I answer:
Time, do not forsake me now…
Let our thoughts nestle in each other’s company
With the clocks that capture us…”

At the tipping of Death’s dark chimes,
The Devil’s mouth salivated in restful rage


Long poem by J. W. M. Earnings | Details |

Pouring Sun

Breathe in and out and don’t fall for the lies of society
We are breathing in pollution of poverty
Heartaches are blameless, but I am blameful 
Shattered and insignificant…left on the floor…wasteful

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

You’re so distant and far from my reach
Your love, your kind of dynamic love I beseech
Fast speed of shapes shape-shift right before my eyes
Love is working and you run me over by your lies

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

Pouring sun drenches in my eyes of reflections and shadows
Collecting woes…bruises and clues of faithless woes…
Holding unto me once more, winter froze me long ago
Shades and hues of uncertainty clothe us all…so? So?

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

You ignored my calls and messages of a billion light-years of love
Don’t you know, you little sparrow, that wings of flight comes from up above?
Sacred sanity crowns my head and I pray you sift out the dread
Shielded by God’s royal grace, I see your face with an outlandish, yet total trippy trace

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

Beautiful as you were to me,
You’ll never, ever see it, the beauty
The beauty
The beauty I long to be…
I long to be…
Free,
Can’t you see?
Will you ever see?

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

So blue…if only you knew
So blue…if only you knew
The dark secrets of time
You got to try…
You got to try to fly
Internalizing isolative comments
Negativity and what not
Has left me to rot

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

Enflamed by encouragement
Deflamed by discouragement
Holding in resentment
Deceived by the heart many-a-time…
Pardon my lack of enthusiasm…sin is crime
Sin is crime
Sin is crime
In a flick of a dime

Apparently, you are different and better than me
Aren’t you lonely and fading?
Running my mouth and flipping out frankly, frankly
Can’t believe you’re miserable and hating!
Press your body against my own…
We are one, no longer two
Like black and white skies…we blend…you’re my backbone
Right in front of the insanity of my sadness so blue

Whatever or whoever you want to become,
Be that person, not the numb victim of dumb
For you are not dumb, you are smart
And smartness comes from the heart
I memorized it by heart
The moment we both broke apart

“Be a dream-catcher, not a dream-destroyer”

“Demolish not and construct a lot”

Pouring sun has won
Dim moon has lost


Long poem by Brick Cullum | Details |

ARTPHUCK

like a Renaissance baby born of man and woman
to a fatherless mother without hope for a
future worth passing on or an inheritance
worth inheriting at all in its own debt
that truth to life which breathes so hard
cancerous lungs and a diseased heart
that beats to the vanity of its own blood
a suffering sound does it make like a 
thief running on a watery sunbathed street
the falsity of all of the jewels in his hands
that shine so bright diamonds and pearls
glimmer glimmer so they glimmer they 
shimmer they shimmer a cold winter
does it snow in the summer does it
rain in that place called hell I can’t imagine
a break from the heat this year it’s
been quite the year as to this point
soot sits silently on the hill of shadows
oh does it sit so very solemnly sometimes
ashes ashes we all fall down the corpse
of Mary’s little lamb rotted away to nothing
but dust and sin and maggots and grit
wonder do I now of all times where 
that burnished throne of Eliot does sit
so I might plant myself upon it and 
bloom a song of myself and sing the body
electric until maybe it comes back to life
perhaps the winter is too harsh for roses
this year and the summer too hot
but the frost told me the trail was rough
so I perhaps of all should think not
tears of a better day cried for tomorrow
as though the sand should fall up
but it will never come again for us
we only have the present to live
not a minute more than the second
we’re given when we think just now
do you see do you see do you see
it’s quite a remarkable thing to think
and know that for just now this very moment
you’re capable of saying you have life
but in a flash it could all be gone
like the last note of some forgotten and
overly played and out of tune song
do you sing my friend oh ever
should you sing a song to me
would I smile so bright and laugh
so long into the midnight where
the moon beats red against the dead sky
a light over the world where corpses
walk and humans die pathetic
remembrances of who they once were
you can look and you can cry but
the photographic tears will never dry
and they’ll water your soul until
it blooms a subtle dead thing
you might ask Simon what he sees
if the Lord of the Flies is real or
if maybe the body of war is just
another nightmare of the raped thing
we so call a home or a country or
whatever we choose to label it
in these malicious and malignant
times and yet I wonder if maybe 
hope can be found in the rotten
flesh of some selfish soul
tis I that is nobody but myself
a worthless man behind the face
of another dead and delinquent one
a mask is only a mask until you
give it the presence of animation
a mask becomes a face when
you let it become one it’s a thing
called freedom or liberation or choice
never perceive the American dream
as something that it isn’t because
those great donators those ejaculators
of emancipation want you free
they want you to choose the oppression 
that you so crave and desire
only you can light your flesh on fire
burn baby burn baby burn
let that great wheel turn and turn and turn
until it’s fully satisfied with itself
and all of the things it’s done in its life
some great and liberated idea
that a woman’s body is a man’s toy
but who should I see but a woman
carry the child that he kills with
a flick of his alcoholic wrist
this thing called love is cruel
to those who believe in it
maybe that’s why God is love
because both are cruel and both
cross out their own ideas with nothing
but the idea of their own ideas
you can’t live a life in a book 
you can’t live a life in hope that
someday you’ll live a different life
streets of gold are great and heaven is okay
but what does that matter in terms of today
when you can die before you 
even comprehend what I’m telling you
so what’s the point then
why am I doing this
why am I even an artist at all
when my portraits of life reflect nothing
but the opaque things in the human soul
you don’t even care so I think I’m done now
see you some other time friend
I hope you don’t let them hurt
you like they hurt me
I hope you don’t hurt yourself
like I hurt me
I hope you don’t become an
artist 


Long poem by Raymond Ngomane | Details |

Dress Code

Today i was wearing my words in codes                                                              
Full stops and brackets covered me from sniper voices.                                          
Codes that smell choices made to cancel chances of painting pavements around angry gestures                                                                                                            I had battery guitar sound effects attached to my metaphors                                                                     Killing my new pair of rhymes    

Snapping snaps of brain camera snaps that showered me in photographic memory                                                                                                                        Lefifi Tladi knows Africa's memory                                                                          
I was confident in my African steps avoiding felonies                                           
My walk spoke smiles and street smartness painting my fellow fallen niece and kings                                                                                                                         Fellow poets put together broken knees!!   
                                                        
Like verses that rebuke fire fighters who own dry lips and yellow teeth in the streets                                                                                                                 Those that waste water in their desert                                                                 
Today i was wearing my respect, my colourless mind blowing words in a black tie that secured my images tying all broken knots that were secretly tailor made for joy                                                                                                                

Gossips that emancipate heart burns burning safe houses in details                                                               Shots were taken from experience's tail telling tales wearing attitude and my brain                                                                                                                         Engels borrowed me wings to fly over long distant hatred Chances define spoken word fashion   
                                                                                           
Get lost in poetry's outfit while searching word designers                                                 
I address my visions dressing my body language in different stresses undressing my presence in fashion police poetry fashions                                                               
Blessed kings know my motive is to parade my voice in the streets of your desert                                                    The dusty land you set to sell ideas in slippery days Poetry's only red carpet in open mic pamphlets 
                                                                                            
Today i was wearing my pride and sniper mood in baby dippers                                                                               Any bumper let loose all dirt in my head                                                                 
Unpredictable i am                                                                                               
Like written revenge beautiful words don't ask for attention                                                                    Attention hires beautiful words to word the spoken word in different fantasies                                                                           Today I loved my dress code.                                                                                 
Myself loving words (c)
                                                                                         
By Raymond Ngomane


Long poem by Tarek Hassan | Details |

The Thing

a cycle in eight parts
with a slightly criminal coda
(quickly recanted)



I - the thing


the thing the thing the thing!

oh the thing

          the thing is IT

          the thing and nothing but the thing

          long live the thing

          hurrah for the thing

          what is the thing?

the books say
                                                                  
               the thing is ......THE THING

and the wisdom of the ages

...and sages

          worn out pages cages museum pieces masterpieces THE THING

          the thing IS

                    the thing is our SALVATION permutation  castration
          
          the thing is the isness that is not before the essence of
                    the meaningfulness of reason before
                    existence existing apple cart before                     the apple 
                    donkey before the horse cart
                    after the equi-histamopholous oblong
                    wheel was invented

                                        (pythaphagoranamus 2)

                    THE THING IS MYSTERIOUS

the thing the thing the thing
oh the thing                            what is the thing?

LET US SPEAK ABOUT THE THING

                         ........................PATIENTLY

                                                 think

                                                 see

                                                 hear

                         let us read

                         let us write

                         LET US FIGHT

                                        about the thing

                              for a month

                                  a year

                                  a century

                                             or two

                                             or four

                                             or eight
                                             or ninety eight
                                             or eighty four

the thing the thing the thing

oh the thing

          sh sh sh sh sh sh sh sh sh sh sh

                    be composed

                       contained

                       comely

                       demure

                       BE GRAVE

                                   AND WORSHIP

 
                                    WORSHIP

                                                       the thing

                                                       PATIENTLY

          Kara wesha wesha wesha

          wesha wesha wesha wesha

          wesha wesha wesha wesha

                                      (prayer)


                         .....,......,........,...,......,
                         
                         .....,.....,....;......,.....;...

                         ....,....;....;....,....;....,...

               ..and then

               LET US SPEAK
                                             of IT

                                                   over tea

                                                   butter scotch

                                                   or L.S.D.

               or
                    what is the fashion today

                                               with it?

the thing the thing the thing
oh the thing
                              what is the fashion with IT
                                                    the thing
                                                         today?




copyright T.H.A. Hassan,
the ZKH Foundation for Holistic Human Development
18 Mohammad Saleh Street, Dokki, Cairo, EGYPT
tel/fax 20 2 37491481


Long Poems