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Long poem by Mario DE PAZ | Details |

Divine Comedy translation Hell Canto XIV

Because the charity of my native place
Obliged me, the broken branches I the picked up
Them giving back him, who was to debase.

Then we finally reached where had to leap
From the second turn to third, and just where
Horrible art of justice you can seep.

To best describe new things I saw then there,
I tell that now we arrived at a site
Which any plant destroys and impair.

The painful wood is like a garland tight
Around it, like is the sad moat to it;
Here we stopped step after step nearby quite.

The space was of sand arid and thick split
Not quite so different shape from the one
Which was by Cato’s foot canceled to grit.

O God’s vengeance, how  much you ought to stun
And frighten whoever is reading now
What to my eyes then manifest was done!

Of naked souls I saw many flocks to bow
And all together wretchedly to cry,
As they were subject to a wicked law.

Some people of them supine to ground lie,
Some other sitting down fully curled up,
And other walked around with no why.

People who wandered was a larger group,
And the less ones lying to the torment,
But expressing their grief with louder weep.

Over the sandy soil, with slow descent,
Were pouring  of fire very large flaps,
As snow on mountains with no wind extent.

Like Alexander in hot lands perhaps
Of India over his army saw
Flames solid down to ground  to collapse,

So he designed pawing the soil to draw
With his arrays, so that the vapor hot 
Faster lapsed if let alone to withdraw:

So fell there the eternal fire spot;
Making sand to ignite, like the tinder
Under fire, to double the ache shot.

With no rest were waved around to hinder
The miserable hands, just side by side
To send away from self the hot cinder.

I started: “Master, who are winner wide
In all things, except with the demons tough
Who our entrance at the door before tied,

Who is that big who is careless enough
Toward fire and spiteful and grim lies,
So it look like on him fire to snuff?”

And just that one, as had way to comprise
That I was asking my duke about him,
Shouted: ”Like when alive, as dead my guise.

If Jupiter ha to remove his smith’s vim 
From which he took the lightning acute
That my last day me stroke with will grim;

Or if  is tiring others to pursuit
At Mongibello where is the smithy black,
Calling “Good Vulcan,help me, and be cute!”,

As he made at Phlegraean battle attack,
And he darted me with his strength at all: 
He couldn’t have his happy revenge back”

Then my duke shouted with his voice so tall
So tall, that never so strongly I heard:
“O Capaneus, since is not yet small

Your arrogance, you more with pain are spurred:
No torment, except your angry wrath bad,
Would certainly be to your rage concurred”.

Then turned to me, and better aspect had,
Telling: “He was one of  the seven kings
Who Thebes besieged; had and still to add

Contempt has to God, no regard brings;
But, as I told him, his despites are then
At his breast very appropriate things.

Now follow me, and careful not, again,
You put your feet in this hot and  scorched  sand;
But always keep your feet in wood as den”  

In silence passed over to reach the land
Out of the wood where is a tiny flow,
Whose reddish color  my mind still disband.

As from the Bulicame the waters go
Which women sinners then among them share,
Likely that runlet through the sand went low.

Its bottom and too both its steep banks pair
Were of stones, and the edges on the sides;
So I realized that the pass was there.

“With anything else I have shown besides,
After we entered the main door just through
Whose trespassing ever nobody chides,

You did not notice using your eyes too
Overt as it is this present river,
Which turns off all little flames not few”

Of these words my guide had been the giver;
So I begged him the dinner had to feed
After the wish he brought in me with shiver.

“In the sea midst is a place of misdeed”,
Then told me him , “which has the name of Crete,
Whose kingdom under was chaste world indeed.

There is a mount which was of pride replete
For woods and water, which Ida had as name;
Now is a desert as thing to deplete. 

Rea then chose it as cradle to acclaim
Of hers son, and she at best him to hide,
When he cried, she sound shouting overcame.

A grand old man stands up the mount inside,
Holding shoulders at Damietta town
And looks at Rome as in a mirror side.

His head of pure gold is done and crown,
Of pure silver his breast and limbs are done,
Then of copper is made to the fork down;

The part below is built of iron dun;
Except the right foot which of faience is;
And on that foot more stands, the other shun.

Each part, except the golden one, rift has
As a disruption which drips just tears’ flow
Which, gathered, drilling in that cavern does. 

Their course in this valley deep falls and throw;
Acheron, Stix and Phlegethon they form;
Then through this narrow penstock down they go,

At last, there where more drop cannot perform,
Produce Cocito, and how is that pond
You can’t see here, but you shall see as norm”.

 And I: “If this stream has to correspond
To a source like that in our world up there,
Why too in this fount we it see beyond?”.

And he: “This site is round, you are aware;
Although you already walked that much,
Even moving left, getting down to fare,

You did not yet complete the circle such;
So that, if it looks strange to you this thing,
Your face should not wonder and touch”.

And I again: “Master, where is the spring
Of Phlegeton and Lete? Of one are still,
Of other you tell it’s of this rain fling” 

“With all these questions, I admire your will,
He answered, “but the boiling water red
Should have just solved a question you made still.

Lete you shall see, not in this hole of dread,
Where souls go to wash out their pain indeed
When their sin repented  has then been shed”

Then he told: “It’s time, to move now we need
From the wood, so follow and come me back:
Road is done by borders, which let accede,

And on them hot vapor will of course lack”   


Long poem by Brian Johnston | Details |

Driving Alone Through the Sand Hills of Nebraska

My love is light (a fairy kiss?)          
               Like the pressure of sunbeams on your cheek, 
        Ineffable, and yet capable of changing lives…
		Darkening skin to a more attractive hue, 
		Pushing spaceships to distant stars (given time) , 
		Even causing cancer given sufficient lack of love for self.
        For love is not about just getting needs met by another, 
        No, love is more like a laser's coherent beam….
                For in reflecting back a portion of what is given, 
                The power of what is being created grows
                Until it can cut through the hardest steel
        And span the gulf between galaxies.

Poetry too grows through the cross-fertilization of newborn lines, 
        The lines of this poem insist that I record their birth.
 	        Each new line grabs me by the scruff of the neck, 
		       Forces me to hit the brake, grab my pen, 
		       And claim it in my family bible…
	        My only children, clamoring to be set in ink.
         As these Voyagers' pass into the present state of my art
                (Some that I barely recognize in their profligate parentage
	               Of older verse's new verse's newer verse still)          …
		               Somehow still carriers of my own genetic code.
                They press my design against the blank page
	                Flying in search of, homing on… your heart.
 
My love's intent is simply truth (do you want less?)          
	 Would you have me downplay 
	 	The warmth of our connection
                        Because it is complicated by here-to-fore
			        Unacknowledged passion, spiritual connection, 
			        And the remnants of former relationships
			        (Even those still gasping for breath) ? 
		        Or feign a lack of attachment to it's denouement
			         In a solitary attempt to feel safer? 
	 No matter can restrain the effects of gravity
		On the orbits of other bodies in its field of influence, 
		 	Gravity that binds us all in deep wells of space-time.

 Your kiss of greeting…
	After so many years of imagining such a possibility, 
	Imprinted deeper than even my memory of our first meeting, 
		Our moonlit shadows touching as we soaked naked
		In the steaming waters of a volcanic mountain spring.
	This new conjunction of souls occurred in God's clear view, 
		Without artifice or scheming on our part
			And rocked my inner core to it's depths, 
	Organizing molten currents of confused turbidity
	Into a magnetic flare of such intensity
		That iron flew to my spine
	Inspired me to finally declare my love
		To acknowledge your impact on my life…
	And after a period of gestation
		Gave birth to this poem of celebration.

 Back to Nebraskan reality and a new mystery…
	I pass an overturned car, 
		Its wheels tied by yellow police tape, 
	A metaphor for my life perhaps
		'Damaged but still salvageable.'
	The windows are broken out, 
		The occupants removed to a distant hospital somewhere
			(Hopefully arriving alive) , 
		Their odds and ends of life scattered like garbage
			On the inverted ceiling of their car.
	The explanation, perhaps, is the water still standing
		Several inches deep on the road side near the wreck? 
	A sudden orgasmic release of cloud in a desert….
		The car tops the hill to find the highway
			Buried by a lake of dimensions only God can know.
		Who would expect such a thing in Nebraska's sand hills? 

And what does it say about me finally
	That I am so drawn to distant objects, 
        That the two women given access to my heart are
		Both still tied to failed marriages
			By dark chapters I am not part of
			And innocent children who need their love? 
	And at our age where is the partner without a past? 

 Is this all that God has planned for you and me, 
	That we 'just miss' every thirty years or so? 
		I know there are times I am afraid to trust another's love, 
			Cannot even hear words of genuine affection.
		Perhaps this explains my attraction to women
			Whose availability might really be in question? 
		Maybe I'm afraid to let a real lover in? 
			Is the simple dream of love a better choice
				Than the chance of finding real love anew
				(Even love with an expiration date) ? 
		I think I'm more distrustful of my own heart's passion
			Than I am of women being unreceptive to my love.
		Do you struggle with similar feelings? 
	And is it my lot to only remember passion like this in a poem
		While you spiral away to unimagined rendezvous'? 

The coldness of space is not after-all
		The simple absence of heat…
	No, in human dimensionality it is more the absence of others…
		Others who both shine life force toward us
			And reflect our own light back to us, 
		Who collide with us physically and emotionally
			Altering our pathways forever, 
				And who crater the façade whose design
				We imagine belongs to us alone.
	The void of human space-time is a true 'black hole'
		Sporting only star death fragments of the 'Big Bang.'
 
This is all I really know…
	I treasure the memory of our 'fly-bys'
		Even if that's all they ever are.
	And if I'm lucky this joy, 
                This celebration of your existence, 
	Will continue to pour out of me in songs and verse…
		For your ears always (if I am so honored) , 
			For God's heart (as I was born to honor Him) , 
	And to the stars alone if I have only them for company.

Brian Johnston
August 2009
     
This poem, like 'A Walk Near Blunt, ' began during an actual drive from South 
Dakota to Oklahoma and then took on a life of it's own. These 'real life 
narrative' poems are part of an attempt on my part to give precedence to truth 
and content over form and rhyme. For readers with an interest in science, I 
hope you also enjoy my attempt in this and other poems to bring my love of 
Physics into the world of poetic imagery.


Long poem by Mario DE PAZ | Details |

Dante's Hell translation CANTO X

Now is going on through a secret way
Between the martyrdoms and the ground wall,
My master, and I behind him to stay.

“Oh highest virtue, who me gently haul
In wicked rounds”, I started, “If you please,
Speak to me, and to my requests befall. 

The persons  who are in graves abductees
Might perhaps be seen? Because opened are
All covers, and too nobody guards these”

And he to me: “All will be closed by far
When from Iosafat they will come back
With their bodies which just there up left were.

The graveyard on this side happens to stack
Epicurus and followers them all,
Who make souls of dead corps follow the track.

But to the question you put with your call
An answer will be given in time short,
And also to untold  wish you enthrall. 

And I: “Good  duke, I just do not comport
To hide my heart if not to speak at less,
As you have always tried to me exhort”.

“Oh Tuscan going in the fire stress
Alive speaking in such an honest way,
Please stay more in this site and don’t egress.

Your way of speaking is a clear display
Of your indeed noble  homeland birth place,
To which I was nagging perhaps it may”.

Suddenly this loud sound came out to face
From one of the graves; so I went then close,
Fearing, to duke my guide a little space.

And he: “What are you doing? Don’t oppose! 
Now you see Farinata who stood up:
From the waist up you can see he arose”.

Yet I had turned my face his sight to clasp
And he with waist and forehead then stood
Looking as had hell in great spite to grasp.

And the lively hands of duke promptly could
Push me between the graves then towards  him,
Telling: “Your words be well weighed should”.

After I reached of his grave the rim
He looked at me, and then, scornful just a bit,
He asked: “Which is your original limb?”.

Since I was akin to his will admit,
I did not hide it, opening at all;
So he then scowled up the eyebrows well split; 

Then told: “Were fierce rivals, as I recall,
To me and parents and my partners too,
So that twice I could dispel them and maul.”

“If they were expelled, they came back, is true”,
I answered him, “And both the times indeed;
But yours this art were not able to view”

Then rose uncovered to my sight concede 
A shadow, along this, up to chin:
I think to rise on knees  it could succeed. 

It looked then me around as it had been
Anxious to see if any else was there;
And then after the suspect became thin,

Weeping told: “If you now in this despair
Prison are moving thanks to your brain height,
Where is my son? why with you doesn’t fare?”

And I to him: “Lone I don’t reach this site:
The one who waits me there, and is my guide
Maybe your Guido did not like his sleight”.

His words and the way too with which he cried
Already to know his name could allow ;
Thus my answer was so quickly implied.

Immediately pricked up he screamed: “How?”
You told:”he did not”? Does he not live yet?
Does not then lance his eyes the sweet light now?”.

When he realized that he did not met
Any word responding to his reply,
Supine fell and to show he did not let.

But the other noble, the reason why
I stopped there before, did not change face,
Neither moved his neck, nor bent his side by;

And replied keeping the previous trace,
“If they have that art”, told, ”so poorly got,
It gives me sorrow more than this bed place.

But less than fifty times of light will spot
The woman’s face which always commands here,
That you will know that art how weighs a lot.

And if your return to sweet world is clear,
Tell me: why that people is godless so
Against my guys in all laws to appear?”

So I to him: “The torment and ruin flow
Which the Arbia river colored red,
This speech in our temple makes then so low”.

After he sighing had shaken his head,
“I was not alone”, told, “And nor for sure
With no reason I moved with others then.

But I was alone, when hard to insure
For each one the city of  Florence save,
Who just defended it with open cure”.

“I pray, hoping your seed rests in this grave”,
I begged him, “You should now untie the knot
Which until now has knotted my speech wave.

It looks like you see, if rightly I caught,
In advance what in the future will be,
While in the present to see you cannot” 

“Like that one who has wicked light, we see
Future events”, he told, “which are still far;
This much our high lord to shine is yet free.

When things are closer or happen, vain are
Our arguments; and if no one gives news,
To know your human status is not our. 

So you can realize how we must lose
Any understanding from that point on
Which of the future the door must then close”.

Then, as by a sense of be faulty won,
Told: “Now to that fallen soul you shall tell
That his son away from life has not gone;

And if, before, I was not to retell,
Let him know I did it because I thought
In the wrong way, you after have cleared well”.

And my master already for me sought;
So that I begged the spirit onwards more
To tell me who to stay with him was brought.

Told me: “Here with more than thousand lay sore:
The second Federico is now here
And the Cardinal; others I ignore”.

Then he hid himself; and I walked near
The ancient poet, back thinking in the while
To those words which hostile might me appear.

He started to walk; and then moving so,
He told me: “Why are you so harshly lost?”.
And I satisfied his question aglow.

“Your mind has to remind at any cost
What heard against you, that wise could say;
“And now look here”, and up his finger tossed:

“When you shall be in front of the sweet ray
Of woman whose nice eye can just all trace,
From her you shall know of your life the way”.

He then after moved toward left his pace:
We left the wall and went the middle through
Making a path cutting a valley place,

Which up to there his disgusting stench spew.
 


Long poem by Isaiah Zerbst | Details |

A Poem of Ruth

The tears well up, and scarce could she not moan
When father, brother, husband, all have died.
She now has no possessions, neither home,
But travels to a distant, unknown land:
Once so secure, yet now compelled to roam;
Once rich in love, she treads through foreign sands.
Her weary feet move forward but by faith;
For all left to her name is mere belief:
Mind, heart so far away she seems a wraith-
Love, happiness- all taken by a thief.

When, sometime since, her heart had broke in two,
The path of life, once single, parted way;
Forsake she could, but this she would not do-
All else was gone- with mother she would stay:
"Intreat me not to leave thee," was her plea,
"For whither thou wilt go, there will I; pray
Forbid me not to follow after thee,
For where thou lodgest I would also stay:
"Thy people shall be mine, thy God my God;
And where thou liest, I will gladly lie
Beside thee, overhead the selfsame sod;
That even then thou mightest be closeby.

"And so they twain walk on, hand clasped in hand;
Both hold the only thing they yet possess:
The younger but a stranger in the land,
An enemy, a widow in distress.

She rose before the sun to find a place
Where she might gather barley ears and wheat;
A field where she might find some needed grace
To gather for their winter store of meat:
Then Boaz comes from Bethlehem, and see,
He tarries with the reapers of the wheat:
He comes to Ruth and says, "Hear'st not thou me?
Remain until the harvest is complete:
"Go not from hence, but in my fields abide,
And let thine eyes be on the field they reap;
Behold, these maidens thou may'st work beside,
And near the reapers thou may'st ever keep."
Then to her face she fell, and wond'ringly
Asked why to her, a stranger, was so kind;
And he replied that she unfailingly
Had cleaved unto her mother with one mind,
And left her father, mother, and the soil
Of her nativity, and kissed the dust
Of some strange land wherein she meant to toil;
Forsaking gods of Moab God to trust:
"The Lord," said he, "reward thee for thy deeds,
 And recompense thy labour and thy love:
The God of Israel answer all thy needs,
And make his wings a shelter from above."
 Then said the maid, "My lord, please let me find
Some grace and favour in thy blessed sight,
For that thou hast been friendly, spoken kind,
And I am but a stranger in the night."
Then Boaz said, "At mealtime here abide;
Rest in the shade, come, sit with us and dine:
So down she sat, a reaper on each side;
She ate her wheat and dipped her bread in wine.
Then Ruth arose, and to her work she leaves:
The master thus commands his servant men,
"Let this young maid glean e'en among the sheaves;
Rebuke her not, for she shall come again;
And let some handfuls fall onto the ground,
There let them lie for my sake and for hers
That she may glean and plenty may be found;
For reasons she has need of it are pure."
And as she worked, Ruth knew not what a sight
Of beauty and of diligence she made,
As in the golden field in sunset's light
She bowed her head and knelt as if she prayed.

It came to pass that in his fields she stayed
Until the end of barley harvest came,
When mother told the lovely little maid
To seek for his provision and his name.
She washed and dripped an oil filled with sweet
Perfumes of wild roses on her face:
She had not much; her beauty was complete
With but her finest clothes to seek his grace.
Her braided hair shone brighter than the gem
That never graced her soft and shapely form;
Her eyes, they sparkled brighter than the hem
Of gold and pearls that she had never worn:
Thus Ruth went down unto the threshing floor
Where Boaz winnowed barley till the night,
And peeked at him so shyly 'round the door;
She never let him leave her searching sight.
His workday done, the master ate and drank;
With happiness his heart was full when fed:
Then by a heap of wheat he went and sank
Into the furry robes that made his bed;
And Ruth, a while watching till he sleep
Kept vigil from a stone used as a seat,
Till when his eyes had closed and sleep was deep
She lifted up the cover from his feet
And softly laid her down and dreamed of brides
Until the watchman struck a dozen beats,
And being startled, Boaz woke and spied
A woman sleeping at his very feet:
"Who art thou?" queried he in sleepy voice;
"Thine handmaid, Ruth," was her unsure reply;
Then blessed he her for wise and kindly choice,
For passing poor and rich young fellows by.
"And now, my daughter, gladly shall I do
According to thy wishes, for all here
Consider thee as virtuous and true;
Howbeit, there is one to thee more near,
A kinsman who must duly have his say:
If he decline, then rest assured I will
Perform the part of kinsman." So she lay
Down at his feet, and both were quiet, still.

In grey of early morning she arose,
Before a face could be discernéd there;
To keep from what some people might suppose
And who might stand along the road to stare:
Then Boaz said, "Bring here the vail thou hast
Upon thy head and hold it in thy hand:
Six times the barley measure filled and passed
From heap to vail as much as she could stand.
Then Boaz went up to the city gate
To find the nearer kinsman, whom he sought,
To see if he would purchase the estate
Of Ruth, and she herself, but he could not;
So Boaz purchased all the widows' land;
The houses, barns, and fields, though overgrown;
And bought what pleased him most, Ruth's comely hand
To cherish and to make his very own:
Then Boaz went to find the handmaid, Ruth
And lift her from a servant to a wife;
To love her in all tenderness and truth
In every day God blessed them both with life.



[By Isaiah Zerbst. Published 9/7/14. Parts of poem have been removed due to soup's limitations.]





Long poem by Mario DE PAZ | Details |

Canto XIX Hell translation

Simon wizard, you poor under his sway
That all things of God, which then of good will
Must be always brides, and you birds of prey

For gold and silver adulterate still,
Now it's time that the trumpet sounds for you,
Because you in third circle just stay ill.

We were already, at the tomb next new,
Clambered up to the tall rock at that place
Where is the center above the ditch cue.

O supreme wisdom, how great the art base,
Which in heavens, on earth and ill world show,
And how much justice your virtue can trace!

On the banks and on the bottom I saw
The stone very full with of holes a lot,
All of the same size and each well round though.

These seemed neither be of more nor less slot
Than those you found in my Saint John church nice,
Where the baptizers their faith office got;

One of those,  few years ago imprecise,
I broke to help a guy just drowning there:
And this to testify truth and lie vice.

Out of the mouth of each hole leaned bare
Of a woeful sinner legs and feet too
To the belly, the rest down to the hair.

Both soles burned to all of them hitherto;
Their joints were strongly flickering so that,
They might be broken wacky as a screw.

Likewise the glowing of oily things fat
To move then up to reach the upper end,
So were there from the heels to tips just at.

“Who is that, master, who worries must send
Flickering than the others well much more”,
I told, “and whose flame has stronger its trend?”

And he: “If you like, we go to explore
Down there then to the lowest lying bank,
From him you can all about his sins score” 

And I: “So I like , as you like and thank:
You are my lord, and you already know
That your will is mine, higher is your rank”

Then we arrived at the fourth bank below;
We turned at left hand and well down we got
Just to the narrow bottom riddled so.  

Good master yet his side till end did not
Offer to me, and thus we reached this way
Where that one was crying with his foot hot

“Whichever you are, upside down then stay,
Mournful spirit who as a pole stuck are”,
I started, “If you can, your words display”

I stood like friar who confessing were
Perfidious killer, who, since stuck is,
Then asks him for death to stop his anger.

And he screamed: “Are you there erect faces,
Are you there erect , Bonifacius now?
For years about  the writing he lied has.

If you then to be full of goods allow 
For which you were never restrained from wile
To pretty woman, and then her torn sow?”.

I became as those ,who stay doubtful while,
Not understanding what herd as reply,
Almost confused, and no word is worthwhile.

Then Virgilio told: “To tell him try:
“That one I'm not, not the one you believe””;
And I replied to follow him thereby.

For this the soul his feet just ought to weave;
Then he,  sighing and with a crying sound,
Told me: “So what you want from me achieve?

If to know my person you are so bound,
That you for this down the bank now have run,
Learn that I had the great mantle around;

Really I was of the she-bear son,
So greedy well my puppies to wind on,
That up and here my assets were done.

Behind my head are here the others won
Who me preceded in simony the sin,
To the crevices of the stones put con.

There I shall fall also when will come in
The one that I believed before you were,
When I first asked you with agitation.

But for more time fire my feet incur 
And upside down longer I have been so,
Than he will be sticked with red feet spur;

Since after him then will come with worse woe,
From west, a minister with any law,
Such as is correct that he on me grow.

Novel Jason will be, of whom read raw
In Maccabees; and as to that was weak
His king, so to him whom France as king saw”

I don't know if I was with mind oblique,
Since I responded him just in this mode:
“Ah, tell me now: which treasure had to seek

Lord of ours to Saint Peter just before
Giving to the lordship of him his keys?
Nothing else rather than ”follow my core”.

Nor Pete nor others from Mathias seize
Gold or silver, when he arose by draw
To the place where his bad soul lost through these.

For this it’s right, you are damned by good law;
And now good care take of the money took
Which made you against Charles so proud with flaw.

And if I were not  hindered by the hook
Of obeisance for keys so highest then
Which you held in happy life but mistook,

I would use even more hard words again;
Because your greediness makes the world sad,
Crushing good people and lifting bad men.

Of you Pastors the Vangelist known had
When woman who on waters takes a seat
As whore he saw with kings in a way bad;

That who was born with seven heads complete,
And from five horns had power great indeed
Til hers husband could to virtue compete.

You God of gold and silver could concede;
How differ idolaters then from you,
But that they pray one, and you hundred feed?

Alas, Constantin, how  much harm could do,
Not your conversion, but that wealthy gift
The first rich pope of story you gave to!”

And while such notes singing I had to lift,
Either was bitten by conscience or rage,
Strongly both legs was pushing with strong shift. 

I truly think much liked this my duke sage,
Since he attended with so happy face
The sound of words with truth I could engage.

So with both his hands me had to embrace,
And after he had at his chest all me,
He climbed back the way then leaving the place.

Tired to hug me he didn’t seem to  be,
So he brought me up of the arch to top
Which from fourth to fifth bank is designee. 

Here weight to ground he could gently drop,
Gentle respect to rocks dirty and steep
That would oppose to goats  a severe stop.

Then I discovered a new valley deep.


Long poem by Gary Bateman | Details |

Rosalia - The Evil Black Witch of the Harz, Part Two

Rosalia - The Evil Black Witch of the Harz, Part Two

Rosalia’s Instruments of Evil and Debauchery
Rosalia needed certain tools or instruments of evil and debauchery to successfully pursue her nefandous plans of bringing the people of the Harz countryside under the dominion and control of the Devil. The following instruments could be construed as weapons in and of themselves and were integral to Rosalia’s practice of Witchcraft and Sorcery, and were central to her fervent desire of accomplishing this dastardly goal as she actively sought to corrupt and destroy the souls of her victims. Her bright gems of evil and debauchery included:
 
Necromancy  
As Rosalia expanded her power, control, and influence among the people she became involved in Necromancy, that is to say, the art of predicting events by communicating with the dead. She would use her channeling efforts to enter the spirit world, and in an act of true malevolence, would prompt her spirit contacts to conjure evil dreams and have them pervade the consciousness of her unsuspecting victims. She would, at times, summon Lucifer himself in the midst of all of this to directly maximize her channeling efforts.      

Moleosophy and Wartology  
Rosalia had mastery of the arcane art of Moleosophy and Wartology, whereby she could divine the temperament of people and surrounding future events by spiritually sensing and reading the moles and warts on men and women in a stream of consciousness. Beyond this divining and sensing aspect, this power was also amply reflected in the use of her Black Wart and the use of its bile liquid contents to inflict irreparable harm on her victims and engender absolute fear.

Witch’s Broom  
Rosalia had a Witch’s Broom, serving as her primary mode of transportation for traversing the Harz and for frightening and wreaking utter havoc on her unsuspecting victims.

Black Hen’s Blood
Rosalia used a Black Hen’s Blood gruesomely obtained by beating a black hen to death, and then smearing a small portion of the blood on her human victim or the victim’s clothing— in effect, to transfer the agony of the hen’s death to her intended victim. 

Magic Wand
The Magic Wand made of hazel is another invaluable weapon used by Rosalia as an instrument of indomitable evil force and power as personified in its likeness as a phallic symbol.  Rosalia’s mastery of her Magic Wand enabled her to instinctively react in casting black magic spells on her victims and conjuring an aura of evil spirits to plague and ultimately destroy her victims’ families.

Black Potions
Rosalia brewed alchemic poisonous potions to a horrifying hideous effect,
using them to startle, stun and paralyze her victims with unending fear
while unmercifully taunting and tormenting them with equal evil effect,
and using Witchcraft to destroy once innocent souls and harvest fear.
Rosalia employed her alchemic masterpieces to great effect in gaining control of her victims’ will or desire to resist her evil intentions. Rosalia sometimes used her Black Potions to immediately subdue and poison to death victims who had insulted her and driven her anger to an insatiable lust and frenzy.

Witch’s Dagger   
Rosalia’s Athamé was her special coal-black-colored ceremonial dagger, of course, with a double-edged blade, but in her instance totally black to include the actual blade itself, with the sign of the Pentagram firmly engrained into the dagger’s handle. This was Rosalia’s magical dagger, her tool which she used for ritual black mass ceremonies and to direct psychic energy and to even exact both torture and murder—beyond the normal expected use of such a dagger in a witchcraft ceremony.  

Black Cat   
Whereas a vampire has the power to command his or her “Children of the Night,” and to take the form of a wolf or a bat, similarly, Rosalia could transmute her human form and soul appearance into that of a Black Cat, or on occasion, into that of a White Cat to better mask her nefarious activities and evil intentions.

Black Witches’ Sabbath
Given her power and authority from the Dark One (or Satan himself), Rosalia was so anointed to conduct a Black Witches’ Sabbath two times a year:  April 30th on the Great Sabbath of Walpurgis Nacht and October 31st with Halloween (All Hallows’ Eve). These were the events during which Rosalia summoned the “Goat of Mendes” by which Satan would appear in physical form as a goat or a ram. Rosalia used these special witch coven gatherings on Walpurgis Nacht and Halloween as defining events by which she would give over the souls of her trusted disciples to Satan. She would also recommit her blasphemous Faustian eternal allegiance to the Dark One made over centuries before when she existed in other evil reincarnated soul being forms before becoming Rosalia.

Black Mass 
Intoning, in a shrill repetitive manner six times:  Rosalia recited the Satanist Prayer (Our Father, which wert in Heaven . . .) during monthly Black Mass celebrations and the Black Witches’ Sabbath with her Coven. Rosalia used the transformative power of these events to further energize her disciples and to call directly on Satan to inform him of her evil activities and seek his continued influence and support for her acts of terror, torture, and debauchery—all in his name. Tragically, all of Rosalia’s disciples were lost souls and faced eternal damnation because of their continued association with her.  At the end of the Black Mass rituals all of Rosalia’s disciples were left in a state of unfettered “Humicubation,” whereby they lay on the ground in a state of submission and penitence to her for ever having worshipped the Lord God.

End of Part Two

Gary Bateman, Copyright © All Rights Reserved, Schoeningen, Germany (September 20, 2014)


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 Jorn Kolding | Details |

The twins, Part 1

In the dark of night a wind took hold,
With powers charged to shake the sky,
By moody swings of gods up high,
Their breath alone enraged and bold.

In the dark of night history spoke,
Of a world alive with fury’s voice,
When life was full of fate and choice,
And death the augur in the smoke.

In the dark of night a man did dream,
Whose tale these words we now account,
Be brave my friend this chariot mount,
By nothing less shalt this vision redeem.

Struggling through the combative gales,
A sleepless figure tossed and rolled,
With wondering sight a story was told,
Of mysteries shrouded in ancient tales.

Upon this figure two more did glare,
Faces are but vessels for orbs to divine,
Not sufficient to be one through design,
Two alive but so unlike to us stare.

These twins that see by darkness alone,
Feel the truth in the shine of art,
Ending where the few dare start,
These bright globes make gold of stone.

With raging winds our story begins,
The battle set both within and out,
The world’s pictures thoughts about,
Action the habits, blindness the sins.

With Boreas alight wandering above,
A divine force teased with subtle math,
To follow the Phoenix on its path,
Or kneel in tears with a praying dove.

The tempest in all its mighty flight,
Decreed with a fist the obvious!
So proud, so proud, yet so oblivious,
The storm forgets his humble birthright.

The wild winds be but a paper tiger,
The hands that give it mighty thrust,
Wields no whip to allure its trust,
Holding a low cup, a cat just finds her.

Such be the crispy breeze in deed,
To roar, puff, blow things down,
Seeking doors to equilibrium’s town,
When heat in fact needs cold to feed.

Wind seeks the muse of inspiration,
A lull, then a rush to arms to end,
Her charms the air does commend,
She whispers with bated respiration.

Such my friend is the temperate truth,
The tempest being no storm cries,
For its maker with love sees its lies,
The swordsman’s tail swings uncouth.

With no further aside we now return
To one whose sleep our vision seeks,
Into this mind the devil now peeks,
Intellect put off so symbols could turn.

Seeking passage to dreamlands alter,
Further and further the eyes withdrew,
A fatherly vessel, twos sons the crew,
A ship who by one one would fault her.

The tides of reflection ebbed no more,
For the two in one the world was gone,
Sands of sleep their eyes set upon,
Dreams for obeying in days to store.

‘Saw the one, the troubled of the two,
Again vain Boreas with eyes asquint,
Forged to see not flowers but mere mint,
An ignoble man, through and through.’

‘His drifting eyes of warrior bent bow,
Blind to the combat of peaceful keys,
Gazed upon Orithyia ready to seize,
The light by which he would never know.’

‘In one fell swoop he swept upon her,
An immortal force not fit to engage,
Death by shock, a rose in a cage,
A sword can never a heart procure.’

Tailors we know make not the man,
Nor, to wit, does he who blow impress,
The finest garments fit best to undress,
The suitor, naked, conception’s plan.

The warrior’s blood once led the world,
What man wanted man merely took,
By far better ways the world was shook,
Now only fools let their swords unfurl.

Still within us sleeping reptiles wink,
Side by side the peace laying dove,
Whose golden egg sits on a glove,
Disarming the insults men might think.

Yet by tinted thoughts some still fall,
There walk among us wanting men,
Who touch stones instead of women,
Blind fools like statues they do install.

To such a fellow we now must return,
By unlucky choice he cast his dice,
Gambling rage would make life nice,
His heart of fire for ice would burn.
 
The I then of the one who took control,
With eye inclined to dote ambition,
In Boreas he saw worthy commission,
Jewels taken justly by godly parole.

‘Reading now the face of himself,
Pleased to see opportunity’s chance,
His office in life he wished to enhance,
His brother’s book push’d off the shelf.’

“This world is made for the taking,
By will alone my will will be done,
A wild beast untamed I roam alone,
But not for long my flight in staking.”

‘Fighting the angel by his side,
He saw in Boreas a better figure,
With sharp mirror set to disfigure,
The Abel eye, his far better guide’

‘Eager as a dog ready to surprise,
Our hero set off to execute his plan,
With canine teeth and on four he ran,
To she who soon would be his prize’

To think a surprise can live in a dog,
Is like seeing a rat for a filet mignon, 
So deluded a man can appear to one,
Whose rose is above all mist and fog.

‘With tongue wild about he grabbed,
The hand intended for him that night,
So sure his lust would disarm a fight,
So shocked to see her smile stabbed’

“Unsightly hair-chested beast you are,
Withdraw from here in haste and fast,
Better to drown alone in seas outcast,
Then with you fly off with fettered tar.”

“Listen little man, listen with your ears,
Give not violets your muscular arms,
Whispered fumes make better charms,
Graceful words for love sheds tears.”

“Fear most of all power’s delusion,
For the deluded become denuded,
Gaining nothing, nothing included,
Power wins only a life in seclusion.”

“Go to thy chamber, scream and yell,
Amend, however, by all smart means,
Your spiteful mean loveless routines,
Thou art but a mute, a soundless bell”

‘With reproof in hand he up and went,
To vent the gales in charge of him,
The dogfight over with outlook dim,
He saw his brother of different bent.’

‘Reaching for the floor the fallen book,
Whose pages spoke a turtle’s tongue,
The unread by thorny bees are stung,
So wiser he for counsel stole a look.’


Long poem by Darryl Ashton | Details |

WELCOME TO COALITION AIRWAYS

WELCOME TO COALITION AIRWAYS!


(After being treated to a flight on Air Force One recently, the Prime Minister could be tempted to order his own official plane. But he’d have to work hard to get the Lib Dems on board. So what might a flight on Coalition Airways be like?)

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen, not forgetting members of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender community. This is Captain Cameron speaking, but you can call me Dave.

Please allow me to apologise for the lengthy delay in our boarding process, caused by unforeseen technical glitches with our state-of-the-art automated retina recognition scheme and the arrest of several passengers for alleged racist remarks while passing through security.

We also apologise for any inconvenience caused by our new seating allocation system, which is based on proportional representation and is designed to ensure equality of access to all sections of the aircraft.

I am also very proud to announce that in keeping with our fairness agenda, passengers earning less than £10,000 a year fly free on Coalition Airways. This is being paid for by a 50 per cent surcharge on passengers in Tycoon Class.

Flying duties today are being shared between the Captain and Co-Pilot Clegg. Please don’t be alarmed if the aircraft experiences sudden changes in direction. Your safety and your comfort is our number one priority.

Would all passengers being extradited to America please keep their handcuffs and shackles fastened at all times and remember to wear the special orange sleep-suits provided. 
Passengers fitted with electronic ankle tags are asked to switch them off for take-off and landing as they could interfere with our navigation equipment.

Our purser, Mr Osborne, will be passing among you collecting airline duty, carbon taxes, mansion taxes and VAT at 20 per cent. In our efforts to keep costs down, we regret to announce that full-fare passengers in the higher-rate tax bracket are not entitled to free children’s meals.

Alcoholic beverages will be available, priced at a minimum 50p per unit ABV. Sales of intoxicating drinks will be tightly restricted to prevent anyone going berserk in the Strangers Cabin and head – butting other passengers.

I would like to take this opportunity to welcome aboard those couples embarking on same-sex honeymoons. They will receive unlimited complimentary champagne for the duration of our flight. Cabin crew will also be distributing landing cards, which must be completed in full. I would remind you that the terms ‘husband’, ‘wife’, ‘mother’ and ‘father’ are now illegal and should not be used on any official documentation. The correct term is either ‘partner/spouse’ or ‘progenitor’. Failure to comply will result in arrest by our air-marshals, a fine of £10,000 and six months in prison.

Those of you planning to connect to onward flights to Scotland will have to complete separate customs and immigration forms and produce your passport at border control. We do hope all the passengers enjoy our in-flight meal service, which is being freshly prepared in the galley on the top-of-the-range barbecue presented to the Captain on his recent visit to America.

We try to source as much as possible from reputable British companies. All the crockery in Tycoon Class has been supplied by Royal Doulton, from its factories in Indonesia, and our cutlery is forged from the finest Sheffield steel, in India. 

It is also our policy to feature a selection of traditional British dishes. Today we are offering a vegetable lasagne, prepared by the gourmet chef Ed Balls-Cooper in his subsidised second  home kitchen. Unfortunately, the steak and kidney is not available, as Mr Pickles, the chief steward in our Community Class cabin, ate all the pies.

We also pride ourselves on the stringent security measures taken for your safety and convenience. In the unlikely event of you spotting a fellow passenger trying to explode his underpants, please alert a member of the cabin crew. There is no cause for alarm. It may simply be a case of mid-air turbulence caused by Chef Balls-Cooper’s vegetable lasagne. 

The hacking of mobile phones in flight is not permitted. Smoking is strictly forbidden anywhere on the aircraft, including the washrooms. Dogging and cottaging are allowed, once we are airborne, but we would kindly request that no more than four passengers use a single washroom at the same time.

Given the need for budgetary restraint, this aircraft has been designed to perform a joint civilian  and military role. Consequently, we will be diverting via Syria to bomb Damascus and descending to 3,000 feet to allow members of our special forces to deploy their parachutes.  

During this time, we may experience some anti-aircraft fire, so all passengers will be asked to fasten their seat belts and assume the brace position. Ladies and gentlemen, I do apologise for the continuing delay. I have just heard from our ground crew that our flight today will have to be postponed.

Even if we do manage to get airborne, there is a possibility that Co-Pilot Clegg and several members of the cabin crew will abandon the aircraft and parachute to earth in an attempt to save themselves, in clear breach of both health and safety guidelines and the Coalition Airways Agreement.

So I’m afraid I must ask you to deplane in an orderly fashion and take all your belongings and rubbish with you. As part of our ongoing commitment to combating climate change, we intend to empty the bins on this aircraft only once a fortnight.

Thank you for choosing Coalition Airways. Normal service will be resumed in 2015.

Here endeth the flight.

THE END


BY
DARRYL ASHTON   

      


Long poem by Cyndi MacMillan | Details |

SYLVIA

                         
                           It is a terrible thing
                           To be so open: it is as if my heart
                           Put on a face and walked into the world.


                                          Sylvia Plath, Three Women, 1962



_________________________________



SYLVIA

Sylvia, ever lucent, ever opaque,
an incongruity, a clever imbalance               
that spins collections her hounds facilitate.  
Failures and fractures she bravely lanced
with noncompliance. Reader, rebuff collars
labeled as forewords, smug introductions, 
for Plath’s voice is tenfold more a scholar 
than those receiving undue benedictions.    
Lofty beggars seek to bookend her words
and that empty space she instinctively refills
with her universe, a mayhem that girds,
unapologetic. Mirror images spill
over margins, searching for identity,
negating preamble, snubbing apathy.   

Negating preamble, snubbing apathy
with language that flickers, catches, combusts,
her volumes of wicks, her lit soliloquies,   
glint behind the stained-glass of trust.
There are those who are not really here,
they wander fault lines then crisscross chasms,
lost pilgrims who easily commandeer
unwary emotions. Some hearts just spasm,                         
pulled by their own nature, their delicacy,
for poetry is a weakness; poets die
between verses. Odes can become elegies.
The thin-skinned hear a snared rabbit cry,
and pray for the moonflower, always closing,
while cursing that page, unmoved and dozing.

While cursing that page, unmoved and dozing,
she corners rigid guides, keeps fingers poised,
synchronicity goes, the flow of typing
disappears, mislaid, that perfect noise
of a carriage return, a sound exclamation.
Joy is inspiration making its way home,
her Olivetti forages like a raven,
gifting found nouns, verbs that glare like chrome,
but love still flits, turns from hoarse requests,
and she longs for more than any man can give
for what snags worn ribbons will not rest,
it emits a strong beat, throbs as it loves.
Bless the bitter of life, all wisdom owing,
curse the open heart, its shadows showing.
  

Curse the open heart, its shadows showing,
for worldly delights take full advantage
of the wounded, their brokenness growing.
Everyday beauty wrings arteries, dredges
chambers with barbs, a prompt disobedient.
Fact, there’s no folder large enough to hold 
elation’s girth, no ink conveniently
on hand to black out depression. So, scold
the yew, its roots and branches reaching,
then poke at petals for being complacent, 
when all the while a candle is preaching
of give and take, surrender, luminance,
So, carefully archive apprehension,
revealing blue veins to tender lesions.

Revealing blue veins to tender lesions
requires much more than a room of one's own,
hours do dissolve, days lack cohesion 
when milk sours and tantrums are thrown.
Solitude is in short supply, loneliness,
however, is overstocked; her mind tugs      
at busy hands for attention, such darkness
contrasts to jammy smiles and sleepy hugs.
Elusive titles whimper each morning,
and short stanzas steep, so desperately,
all the while a manuscript is scorning
her swipes at dry crumbs, cold pots of tea.
A life sheds its months, gallows take delight
as sundials atrophy in the arms of night. 

As sundials atrophy in the arms of night. 
the moon blanches tidepools, suckles sand,
even the face of the clock is pulled too tight
and the new calendar can not understand
that writing is sex, is fresh bread, is air,
that time is a brute, quick fisted, rough,
that weeks come and go without a care
that a marriage vow is never enough
to mend adoration, repossess bliss.  
Words make better lovers, rarely stray,
upon her lips, the impression of a kiss
feels as cold as sheets then melts away.
Paper sops afterbirth, accepts her all:
fossil and seed, shackles and free falls.


Fossil and seed, shackles and free falls,
unlocking visions, defying any cage, 
art resists validity, upsets stone walls  
to scale the scarlet heights of a rampage,
to breach the barricades to euphoria.
She excavates id, bares teeth at ego, 
plays the parts of illusion and phobia
then infuses rhyme with soft indigo. 
Colossus begins to shrivel as Ariel
unmans him, riding hard upon metaphors,
and will remain strong, constant, ethereal. 
but curtailed are epics that still implore  
like the cusp of dream long after you wake

Sylvia, ever lucent, ever opaque.









 

 
* For Craig Cornish, whose contest inspired this piece. Thank you, Daddy-O. 




About this poem

This is my first crown of sonnets. It took over 25 hours to write, a full week of me-time! 

These are modern sonnets and the syllable count is extremely loose, intentionally, as it would seem odd to keep things too tight when writing of Sylvia. If anything, I regret not being even looser, altering syllable counts DRAMATICALLY. Also, I used a great deal of slant rhyme for the same reason.


I really wanted to capture Sylvia Plath with this poem, and it was a real struggle. Her language is so precise, and I wanted to do her justice. I had wanted to feel, upon its completion, that Sylvia would have said, "Well, it isn't quite horrible. Not bad for a novice. And there are parts of me there, but only the smallest bits." I do not feel I did this.  I feel like I didn't even TOUCH her mastery of language. But, it is good enough for now.. one day, who knows? 

Oh, Sylvia's typewriter was a Olivetti Lettera 22. It was portable!


Long Poems