Long poem by
Brian Johnston | Details |
CHALLENGE TITLE POETRY CONTEST FOR AUGUST ON POEMHUNTER.COM!
'WHY DO TURTLES CROSS THE ROAD? '
OK FOLKS! Please choose your favorite poem from those entered here and remember too to give your reasons for your choice. How often is it that we get to hear why the judges (YOU) voted the way that you did. Really it is very important to give reasons. Believe me your reasons are a very important part of the show here. So tell us what you really think.
Poem's can be voted on from Sept.1 to Sept.12, 2014 at which time the winner will be formally announced. PoetrySoup members can vote too if they wish I would have liked to show you the other entries in the contest but since I only wrote two of the poems entered under PoetrySoups laws I cannot do so. Although hosting a contest in Poemhunter is much more difficult than on PoetrySoup, there are innovations in my contest that I believe make it superior to contests on PoetrySoup. The biggest innovation is democratic voting. The second innovation, is that here is just one winner, and for your vote to count you must explain why you have voted as you have. This innovation can be very amusing. A final innovation is that the Contest Master can 'roast' the contestants. Go to Brian Johnston's site on PoemHunter.com and look for the poem...
[Challenge] Entrees for August! Vote Here!
Proposals of marriage, profanity and other inappropriate comments however will be deleted as soon as they appear. And like the US Supreme Court, I may not be able to define what is inappropriate here, but I know it when I see it.
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! ! ! ! ! THE AUGUST POEMS ENTERED START HERE! ! ! ! !
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Why Do Turtles Cross The Road?
(A **Joint** Poem by Diane Hine and 'THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA')
‘Okie' turtles cross the road
because they've all read
‘The Grapes of Wrath'
AND NOW LIVE 24/7
IN AN ALCOHOLIC STUPOR
IN MIGRANT WORKER HOUSING
TRYING TO IMAGINE
WHAT THE WORLD WOULD BE LIKE
IF GILBERT GRAPE WAS PRESIDENT.
Badbottom Leatherback bikie
turtles on Harley-Davidsons
don't just cross the road,
they own the road
AND LIVE IN 'HOG' HEAVEN
THE TRUE FAT CATS (IS THAT A SLUR?)
OF THE MODERN WORLD.
Kerouac turtles are the road itself
SO LIKE SCHROEDINGER'S CAT
THEY ARE ALWAYS IN BOTH STATES
AT THE SAME TIME, IE.,
CROSSED AND UNCROSSED,
IT'S ALL PROBABILITY PROBABLY! ? !
ANYWHO, IT'S HARD TO LIVE ANYWHERE
WHEN THE WORD DESTINATION
IS NOT IN YOUR VOCABULARY.
and Chuck Norris turtles never
have to cross the road because
the road crosses itself
EITHER IN TRIBUTE TO L. RON HUBBARD
(WHO LIVES IN THE HUBBARD TELESCOPE)
OR BECAUSE THEY HAVE WATCHED
SO MANY INFOMERCIALS
THAT CROSSED EYES CAN'T TELL
ONE SIDE OF THE ROAD FROM THE OTHER
CHUCK NORRIS TURTLES DON'T LIVE ANYWHERE
THEY PERSONIFY, ‘I AM.'
Contest Master's Comment - The 'dark horse' of the pack, this poem is probably way to literate to garner many votes even if you have taken voice lessons from the Master of Music himself. Who is that masked man I wonder. Will he ever be unveiled? Surely there enough literary references in this poem to make most vapid English Major cross-eyed. The only groups left out that I can see are 'Samurai Ninja Turtles' and 'New Age Belly-Button Turtles' who are too frightened of the real world to ever come out of their shells anyway. Did you ever see a turtle levitate? I think you should add a couple of verses Diane & BO (I mean PO), after the contest is over, don't you?
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Why Do Turtles Cross The Road?
By Brian Johnston
‘So why are the turtles crossing the road?
My sister ask wonderingly
As each turtle would come into view.
No guarantee, but sometimes we'd see them
As we drove with Dad out of town
Checking out cows on a farm or two.
‘It's a great mystery to me, ' I said,
‘As both sides seem really the same,
And our vision's much better than theirs.'
‘The problem I see with crossing for turtles…
Is that they're low and also slow
So fast autos catch them unawares.'
A nice gesture, Dad would frequently stop,
Let us scoop them up in a box
For the ‘turtle farm' at our home place.
The grip's important when picking them up
‘Cause turtles can scratch, bite, and pee,
Oh what a joke, … ‘turtle won the race! '
But now why does a turtle cross a road?
Perhaps he's trolling for people?
Buggers don't care about other side,
From industries' leaders they take their cue,
Their mentors, short visioned and slow,
Who risk their lives to get a free ride.
Contest Master's Comment - Truly the oldest poet in the group, I am hoping to win by means of the sympathy vote crowd. Just think of me as a friendly, old, senile, grandfatherly type. Remember the reasons so many of you voted for Ronald Reagan you tea-party, sociopathic, nabobs of negativism and vote for me too or I will raise your taxes too just like Ronnie did! That's a promise!
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There are several more poems by other gifted poets on my site. Please come visit.
If you like what we have done here.....
>>PLEASE VOTE ON THIS 'POEM CONTEST' (FROM 1-10 <<
Maybe PoemHunter will make contests like this a website
feature in the future like some other websites already do?
And a huge vote of appreciation to both contibutor and my
collaborator Bri Edwards (the disgraced ex-poet and now
>>>Please help us make this contest even more popular <<<
>>>by emailing your friends on PH and elsewhere even, <<<
>>>to make the vote as democratic as possible! ! ! ! ! ! ! <<<
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Poem Entries Continue in Part 2
Long poem by
Gary Bateman | Details |
Rosalia - The Evil Black Witch of the Harz, Part Seven
The Final Days: Rosalia’s Death and Destruction
In the wake of such evil, debauchery and depravity what can be said now in the case of Rosalia?
Now in her mortal form the old black witch no longer had the unspeakable power of hell-spawned evil at her instant command. In spite of the victory of the power of goodness and light and the attenuation, if not the dissolution of witchcraft in the Harz, the memory of who Rosalia was and what she had done could now begin to be eased somewhat from the minds of local people and the clergy. But the memory of Rosalia and her evil could never be forgotten. How could it be otherwise?
After three months of confinement in the dungeon at the Burg Worlerede, a fortress castle, very near to Cloister Marten in the Harz, Rosalia was eventually tried and convicted in a special church court convened at this castle to try cases concerning witchcraft and sorcery, which were beyond the normal jurisdiction of civil courts. Monseigneur Wolfgang Augustus Hardenberg of Cloister Marten was the residing church chief judge with four priests in his assistance serving as subordinate church judges. One civil magistrate judge from the local Harz provincial government participated, in an advisory capacity, with the five church judges in these special judicial proceedings against Rosalia.
Everyone in attendance at the witchcraft trial of Rosalia knew what the outcome would be. With that said, the testimony of her victims on public record dragged on for several weeks, to include the final interrogation and confession of witchcraft and supreme evil doings by Rosalia herself.
In her rebuttal statement to the assembled church tribunal, Rosalia actually gained some of her old fire back as she spoke to the group—in a taunting and derisive manner. Rosalia showed no remorse whatsoever for what she had done and perpetrated upon others. She still renounced the Almighty Lord God and did not ask for his mercy and forgiveness. Her love and passion for being and existence was still with her god, Lucifer, who had forsaken her at last in her hour of need during All Hallows’ Eve and the Black Witches’ Sabbath.
As easy as it might have been at that moment to pity such a pathetic and revolting creature, Rosalia’s hurtful words in complete defiance of God and her taunting mockery and snickering at the victims of her black deeds were beyond the pale of any shred or strand of human decency.
At the conclusion of Rosalia’s rebuttal statement, Monseigneur Hardenberg announced the verdict and sentence of the special church court:
“Rosalia, Black Witch of the Harz and Purveyor of Lucifer’s Evil on this Earth, you are hereby adjudged by this special court of being guilty of the practice of Witchcraft and Sorcery, and the murder of untold numbers victims over the centuries to this present one, and for the malicious corruption of your victims’ souls as they died in torment and faced the reality and agony of eternal damnation. And your acts even against young children and babies are so unspeakable and abominable that they readily defy any iota of rational understanding in our human society here on Earth. All these actions reflect your absolute depravity and lack of regard for human life, and they defy directly the teachings of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. All of your transgressions have been entered into the final record by this assembled court.”
“As a priest and a man of the cloth, I would normally ask the Almighty Lord God to have pity on you and your soul. But you have no mortal soul since you have been in very long service to Satan himself. Once more, you have committed the ultimate sacrilege by renouncing the Almighty Lord God yourself.”
“Therefore, there can be no plea of mercy or divine forgiveness rendered for you by this court on your behalf. Your final fate and disposition beyond the reach of this court lies ultimately with your master—Satan.”
“It is therefore the judgment of this court that you Rosalia—Black Witch of the Harz—be taken on the next morn’ at dawn to the gallows specially constructed here at Worlerede and this is where you shall be hanged by the neck until pronounced dead, and then your mortal body shall continue to hang for three days on public display, for all to see, and then your mortal body shall be burned by fire while it is still in its hanging position. Your mortal body shall burn until it disintegrates into nothing but fine burnt ashes.”
“In God’s name, this is so adjudged and it shall be done!”
As Monseigneur Hardenberg finished his verdict and sentencing, before Rosalia was to be bound and shackled for her departure from the court, he asked her if she had any final words for the court.
At that very moment the wily old hag became extraordinarily animated, and in a wild-eyed uncontrollable manner, jumped high into the air with an energy she had not possessed in a while and made this very provocative pronouncement to the Monseigneur and all concerned:
“Monseigneur you may have me hanged and burned into nothingness, but I shall once again triumph with Lucifer’s will and power behind me for I lay eternally in his bed and seek not Jehovah’s forgiveness and the rapture of Heaven. My Master will restore me once again and resurrect me to return and execute his evil deeds once again here on Earth. It is I who renounce you and all the people assembled in this court. I renounce what all of you stand for. I curse all of you forever, and I shall be there at the very Gates of Hell awaiting the day when I can greet all of and condemn you to eternal hell fire and damnation on my Master’s behalf. A curse of death and eternal damnation be upon you all, and all of the relatives who follow you for future generations to come!”
End of Part Seven
Gary Bateman, Copyright © All Rights Reserved, Schoeningen, Germany (September 20, 2014)
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
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
Gary Bateman | Details |
Rosalia - The Evil Witch of the Harz, Part Four
Rosalia’s Date with Destiny and the Power of Light and Goodness
It is said that the Almighty Lord God works in very mysterious ways . . .
meaning that even an all-powerful witch like Rosalia had her Achilles’ heel, and could lose her sheen of invincibility in certain instances which date back to the earliest clashes between Good and Evil at the outset of mankind.
With her perfect cover working in a local village Inn near the Brocken, Rosalia could plan, plot and scheme her witchcraft activities at will
when meeting unsuspecting villagers and outside visitors alike—
giving her near-unlimited control in shaping the very course of events.
Fate would have it, however, that one event would challenge and alter Rosalia’s perfect cover forever . . .
One day a young girl—named Aurelia, who was barely 15 years old,
visited local village relatives while traveling near the Brocken.
Aurelia, who was quite intelligent and mature for her age was also a
close relative of the regional church Monseigneur, Wolfgang Augustus Hardenberg, and she was part of a traditional German catholic family.
Aurelia was a rare child indeed, endowed with “Heavenly Eyes”
from her eternal soul at birth which gave her a unique, unusual gift
of sensing and seeing the true nature of the men, women, and children
as they came into contact with her . . . without them realizing it.
Aurelia, with this fantastic gift, was truly one of God’s children,
and the antithesis of Rosalia and the incarnate evil she represented.
Aurelia’s family was fully aware of God’s favor on their daughter
and all of the goodness and light she shared with them in the family.
Aurelia was also quick study; she was endowed with an unusual ability to absorb, understand and remember vast amounts of information and detail.
And while attending religious schools, she demonstrated an exceptional proclivity early on for learning and mastering classical foreign languages.
Aurelia too was a centuries’ old soul like Rosalia, but whereas Rosalia embraced the Dark Side, and was the very manifestation of evil and debauchery;
Aurelia embraced the Light and Goodness of the Almighty,
and was one of God’s angelic souls destined to do his bidding in the continuous titanic struggle against Lucifer and his Dark World minions;
she was truly a “Princess of the Light” and a “Precious Child of God.”
With this in mind . . .
On visiting the local village Inn with relatives one afternoon for lunch,
Aurelia immediately felt the presence of a specter of evil and foreboding.
And this specter was, of course, none other than . . . Rosalia.
Beyond her perceptible sensing and feeling of pure evil,
Aurelia was able to make momentary visual contact with Rosalia,
and with her God-given heavenly vision glanced the true image of Rosalia,
which filled her at once with undeniable dread, fright and revulsion
at the terrible visage cast by Rosalia among her unsuspecting relatives.
Aurelia was in luck since Rosalia felt no reason to suspect her, thus paying no attention to the young girl with her relatives.
Aurelia’s God-given power shielded her from Rosalia’s attention,
at least for now . . .
From the encounter at the village Inn, Aurelia knew that some of her relatives were already marked by the witch.
After the visit to the Inn, Aurelia immediately informed her unsuspecting parents of the evil incarnate she sensed and discovered at the Inn.
Time was fleeting and quick action would be required to corroborate this event. It was already Monday, and on the upcoming Saturday, which was All Hallows’ Eve on October 31st, Rosalia’s Coven was set to conduct The Black Witches’ Sabbath in celebration of the Devil himself. This evil Sabbath event was done twice a year with the one preceding All Hallows’ Eve occurring on April 30th on the Great Sabbath of Walpurgis Nacht.
The preparation of the Black Witches’ Sabbath would include black rituals and both human and animal sacrifices with the invocation of the Vespers’ Prayer Preparation for Black Mass, followed by a 24-hour period of preparation by the Coven for its next attack on the local villagers.
Riding horseback to the Cloister Marten in the Harz some 20 kilometers away, Aurelia’s father traveled there with two close trusted friends to inform Monseigneur Hardenberg of Aurelia’s unexpected discovery of the infamous and evil Black Witch of the Harz known as Rosalia.
On hearing of the discovery of Rosalia and her masquerade in human form,
the Monseigneur instinctively knew that immediate action was required,
and that the very lives of the villagers and their eternal souls were in the greatest of peril.
An immediate meeting with his council of priests at Cloister Marten was in order; there was now a chance that Rosalia and her Coven could be finally
destroyed forever. This chance event had been a long time coming and the Monseigneur knew that they must not fail.
The Monseigneur also knew that God’s avengers must act smartly . . .
Rosalia was a virulent evil force not to be taken lightly nor underestimated.
Many priests and their parishioners had already succumbed to the Devil
and his Dark World of eternal damnation, courtesy of Rosalia.
The Monseigneur would need Aurelia’s help in finding Rosalia’s Coven,
and he realized that he and his priests must prepare for the greatest test of their faith, as they contemplated their plan to destroy Rosalia and her spawn of evil.
The Monseigneur understood all too well that to face down Rosalia was almost the same as facing the very Devil himself.
The Monseigneur and his priests must be swift in their vengeance against Rosalia in the name of the Lord, and that a second chance may not be in the offing.
End of Part Four
Gary Bateman, Copyright © All Rights Reserved, Schoeningen, Germany (September 20, 2014)
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
Already I reached the place where heard the sound
Of falling water in the circle next
Suchlike the rumble done by hives around,
When three spirits together changed their treks,
Running, out of an horde just passing there
Under the rain and of their pains effects.
Came towards us, each one shouting despair:
“Stop here you who by behavior look
One not belonging to this depraved air”.
Alas, the sores I saw their bodies took,
Recent and oldest, just burned by flames!
Recalling now again by pain I’m shook.
To their shouts my guide then offered his aims;
Turned his face to me and “should stop by now”,
Told “Courteous be to this people’s claims.
And if there were not the strong fire’s blow
Along this place, then I would certainly tell
That you more with hurry then them move so”.
Restarted , as saw us resting, to dwell
The previous words; and when they reached us,
All three around us stood in circle well.
Similar to naked and anointed champs,
Warning their catching and their vantage too,
Before they start their fighting with hand clamps,
So moving around, each his face through
To me moved, so that backwards my neck
Moved respect to feet continuous soo.
And “If the squalor of this place you check
Puts us and our prayers in so a bad light”,
Started then one, “and our aspect of wreck,
Our fame your benignant soul induce might
To tell who you are, so alive your feet
That with much safe you move in this hell tight.
This one, whose footsteps I now step and meet,
Although going naked and completely bold,
You can’t believe the high grade he could seat:
Grandson he was of the Gualdrade good so told;
Guido Guerra his name, and in his life
Made many things with sense and with sword hold.
The one who on my back with sand has strife
Is Tegghiaio Aldobrandi, whose speech
In upper world should be considered rife.
And me, punished with them for the same breach,
Was Jacopo Rusticucci, and sure
My fierce wife made me this hard pain to reach.”
f I had been covered by fire spoor,
I would have thrown myself underneath them
I feel that pain to doctor could procure;
But since I could be burned more than the hem,
It happened that such fear won my good will
Which wanted then give help to fire stem.
Then I started: “Not mischief but grief still
Your condition painful fixed within me,
So hard that only later all can spill,
After this my guide sir had to decree
Such words which made me to be convinced deep
That people as you are, I had to see.
I am of your same country, and so steep
Your works and too your honored names indeed
For bosom listened with my ears to keep.
I’m leaving gall to catch up more sweet seed
Promised to me by my duke who is true
To get through center is before my need”.
“If for a quite long time your life gets through
Your limbs”, then answered me again that guy,
“And if your fame after you will shine too,
Kindness and worth their lost dwelling cry
In our town as usually goes now,
Or have gone totally away thereby;
Because Whilelm Borsiere, who complains how
With us a while and then goes there away,
Much chagrin now to us his words endow”.
“New come people and rapid earning way
Generated proud and undue excess,
Florence, in you, so only cry you may”.
So I screamed with lift up face to express;
And the three guys, who took it as reply,
Then looked each other as to truth give stress.
“If all times costs so little to imply”,
All replied, “satisfaction to others,
You can be happy when some speaks of thy!
But, if you survive this place which bothers
Getting back the nice stars again to see,
When it will be worth tell “had togethers”,
Then make people to speak of us be free”.
After that broke the circle, and to escape
Wings resembled their slender legs to be.
Not the time of a word to tell with gape
When they had gone then vanishing away;
For my master decided to leave as scape.
I followed him, and after little way,
The sound of water was so close to us,
That it was hard to hear a word to say.
As that river which carries out his course
Before Monviso and to east then flows ,
Of the Appennine just on the left coasts,
Whose upper name is Acquacheta, close
To the final drop in the lower bed,
And at Forlì another name it shows,
Over Saint Benedict rumbles its spread
From Alps then falling in a chasm steep
Where even thousand rivers could be shed;
So, down an abyss just immense and deep,
That roaring colored water we there found,
A sound for ears hard a short time to keep.
I had a rope encircled me around,
And with it never at no time I thought
To catch the spotted panther as the hound.
After out of my chest I had it brought,
As had commanded the good duke to me,
And then I gave it him wrapped as he sought.
So then he turned to the right hand to see,
And far away from the bank with strong force
He threw the rope then down in the gorge free.
“To some new action I should give the course”
I told to me, “when next gesture is done
By master with his eye of message source”
Ow so much cautious must be men with one
Who even not seeing the works and how,
Still in the minds can see and wisely stun!
He told me: “Early will come here now
What I am waiting for and that you dream;
It is time he arrives and shows to thou”
Always the truth which false happens to seem
Man must avoid to tell as much as can,
Even without fault people reproach deem;
But here I can’t be mute; for the span
Of this comedy, reader, I now swear,
If it hasn't to be void of grace plan,
That I saw in that heavy and dark air
Swimming a figure just coming straight up,
Wonderful for any heart with no scare,
As goes back a diver after the drop
The entangled anchor sometimes to free
From rocks or other in the sea to grip,
Who up moves with momentum foot and knee.
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
“Here the fierce with the thin pointed tail,
Who passes mountains and breaks arms and walls!
Here who with stench can the world assail!”
So my duke started to talk with his calls;
And hinted then it to get the bank close,
Nearby to end of marbles and of falls.
And then that filthy image which fraud sows
Came close, and just arrived with head and chest
But on the shore its tail it did not pose.
Its face was of the honest man at best,
So much benignant had its outer skin,
And of a snake was all its body next;
Two hairy gills it had to armpits twin;
Its spine and chest as well as ribs both too
With knots and wheels had like painted had been.
Vivid colors much overlapping do
Neither Tartars nor Turks drapes never made
No such canvas ever Arachne drew.
Likewise sometimes barges nearby shore stayed
In part in water and in part on ground,
And likewise there within the Germans strayed
The beaver prepares its war and to hound,
So the bad and evil fierce remained there
On stony rim of sandy soil around.
Its tail was flickering in void to scare,
Up twisting its fork poisonous indeed
Which armed tip like a scorpion unfair.
My duke told: “To modify now we need
Our pathway until we finally reach
That evil fierce which there lies, careful heed”.
For this we down got toward the right beach,
Ten steps we did then on the limit rim,
The flames and too the hot sand to breach.
And when at end we arrived close to him
A little farther I see just on sand
People sitting near the site with no vim.
Here the master “Now you have at hand
The truth about this circle in full just”,
He told , “go and their fate then understand.
Your reasoning way down there short be must,
Meanwhile you come back, I will speak with this,
So he will offer us his limbs robust”
So again up to the top of abyss
In that seventh circle now alone
I went, where sad people sitting exists.
Through their eyes the internal pain was shown;
Here, there defended themselves with hands
Now to steam, and now to hot soil of stone:
Not different are dogs in summer stands
Now with mug or with paw, when are bitten
Or by fleas or by flies or horseflies bands.
After I put on some my eyes smitten,
On whom the painful fire to fall saw,
No one I knew; but I saw as written
A pocket hanging from the neks to draw
With blazons and colors and well clear sign,
Of which they looked to be proud with no awe.
And as looking at them I joined their line,
In yellow bag I saw a sky-blue tint
Which of lion had face and clear design.
Then going to follow of sight the hint,
I saw another which was as blood red
With a goose that whiter exist didn’t.
And one who of a light blue sow well fed
Had his white bag clearly painted just so,
Told me: “How did you come in this ditch shed?
Now you can leave; and since you alive go,
Learn that my near Vitaliano still
Will seat then here at my left below.
These from Florence, I from Paduan mill;
So many times my ears are stunned nearby
From shouting: “Should come the sovereign will,
Who will carry his bag with three necks by!
Then he twisted his mouth and extracted
His tongue, as ox which nose to lick may try.
And since my stay could not be protracted
To shun master's regret asking be fast
I came back to souls badly impacted.
I found my duke who already had passed
Sitting onto the croup of the fierce beast,
And told me: “Now be strong and bold not last.
Now we have to descend such stairs so pieced;
Come up ahead, at middle I must be
So that for you the tail’s danger is least”
Similar to one whose disgust is close to see
The quartan fever, with nails just pale,
And looks back trembling at high degree,
So I became when heard the words assail;
But I was ashamed by his threats to me.
That a good lord makes right his servant fail.
I found my place on that back hard to see;
So I tried to tell, but no voice I had
As I thought and desired: “Let embrace thee”
But he, who times before to help was glad
Maybe for other, when I was there sat
With both his arms gripped and sustained me sad;
And told: “Geryon, you should move now at;
Be the circles wide, and the slope down short;
You must be careful with such weight as that”
Like a small ship leaves off its place in port
Backwards and backwards, so started then it;
And when he felt to be free to transport,
Where the chest was, he put his tail to fit,
And after stretching, it moved like an eel,
And with gills, inflated air to admit.
More fright I don’t believe would deal
When Phaeton unrestrained became then,
So that sky, as still seen, was burnt to seal;
Nor had Icarus with his sorry loins when
Losing feathers perceived for the wax hot,
His father screaming to him “Bad way amen!”,
The fright I had, when I saw where I got
Everywhere in air, and turned off I saw
Any scenery out of the fierce spot.
It goes away swimming slow, with no flaw;
Rotates, descends, but I am not aware
Except for the wind which comes from yaw.
I felt just on right hand the eddy mare
Doing an indeed scaring roar below,
So that with eyes my head to jut I dare.
Then I became more bashful to that flow,
Since I saw fires and heard tears of pain;
And trembling all I snuggled in me so.
Then saw, since view on I could not attain,
Descent and turning those great pains around
Which came close from various parts again.
Like falcon whose wings long flied up from ground,
Without sight lure or any bird at all
Pushes the fa lconer to tell “Stop hound!”,
Descends tired while it moved easy and tall,
With hundred rounds, and then volplanes quite far
From its trainer, with disdain and fierce gall;
So Geryon put us on rocks which are
At foot at foot of the profound barrow
And, after discharged the persons of our,
It sudden vanished like from bow the arrow.
Long poem by
William J. Jr. Atfield | Details |
Star dust, the stuff of a fool’s dreams.
Oh !!!, to travel upon star dust streams
- that glorious, never ending journey -
into the realms, the space of many.
This old spirit, seems, not to fit into any
mold nor on any rung of the social latter,
that, I think, should not, ever matter.
And so I have to wonder ?,
as upon this planet, I wander.
Is there any place for me ?,
where I might fit in – one day to see ?
In my youth, some perceived me to be
Sall Minnio, even the King,
- Elvis Presley, - this idea girls would bring
with them, in their pursuit of me.
As an adult, I came to be seen
– an Italian, a Greek, a Mexican –
a First Nations is what I’ve been
as folks do the best they can.
As people guessed at my race,
looking and looking into my face,
the essence, the spirit, the soul of this man.
Yet nowhere do I fit - I belong to no place.
Nowhere do I find a fitting space
for this German, French, British, Native,
gene pool, my heritage doth give.
Plus the few – long forgotten – more
that came through the genetic door
– open for viewing the heart of this old soul –
where there is reflection and getting to know.
There have been some who would pass
this face of many – this face of looking glass
refraction – to see truth – a Redman’s blood in the veins
of this First Nation soul – the spirit which remains
for this old soul, the essence of my spirit,
even in times when many would not tolerate it.
And so, it is not a wonder
why this soul seems to flounder,
cannot find anything sounder,
between the jagged, ragged edges
of created, keen, sharp - wedges
between who and what I am, and
where it is I could possibly stand.
There is not – it seems to me – a place
where I fit in, can stand, turn and face,
see a possible niche – a place to belong,
before, my life is almost gone,
as I look back upon all the roads,
- the stories, the tales, the heavy loads –
I have travelled, yet know not what will be told
of what rung, on the social ladder I hold,
what plateau to find shelter in ?,
what plane to fly above, be comfortable in ?,
what place to rest my spirit, my soul within ?,
what space can I find to forget all the sin ?
I have walked with the sane and insane.
I have talked with the educated and uneducated.
I have been in the company of intelligence and unintelligent.
I have laid with the secure and the insecure.
I have laid with passion’s fire and frigid’s cold.
I have known the moral and the immoral.
I have known those of faith and the faithless
I have known the killed and the killer
I have known those who have taken their own lives
I have known the givers and the takers
I have known the movers and the shakers
I have known the honest and the dishonest
I have known the psychic and the blind.
I have known the truth sayers and the bullshitters,
The fast lane, the slow lane, the middle lane I’ve moved in.
The sober, the drunkard – I’ve been and been with.
The strong, the weak – I’ve been and been with.
The used, the abused – I’ve been and been with.
The users and the abusers -- I’ve known and know me.
The wealthy, the poor – I’ve known and know me.
Financial wealth and Spirituality -- I’ve known and know me.
The saver of a life -- I’ve known and was me.
The living and the dead -- I’ve known and know me.
Having a brush with artists has been my fate.
Having acted up with entertainers has been my fate.
Having had words with writers has been my fate.
Having become a rhymer, like my forth cousin, has been my fate.
I have played with players – strummed a note or two.
I have laid with singers-- sung a note or two.
I have laid with dancers – danced a step or two.
I have struck an arc alongside a welder – a time or two.
I have sprayed painted cars alongside a painter – a time or two.
Hammering out metal with body men – I have done.
Twisting wrenches with mechanics – I have done.
Busining along side business men – I have done.
Being a lover, I always thought, was my forte.
Being a husband, I thought I knew how to play.
Being a father, I thought I knew I would stay.
Being a friend, I thought was always my way.
To be a son – a child’s dream.
To be a brother – not to be it seems
as all the above drifts downstream,
leaving one to wonder, what life really means ?
Life’s journey can be a wondrous mystery !,
when one leafs through the pages of his history.
One’s life can also be a disastrous story ?,
one of little hope, dim light and no glory.
So what is left for this old fool ?,
but to carry on breaking the old rule,
rules that make it possible to call oneself a poet,
something I never call myself, a poet, and I know it !
I do the best I can
That is who I am !
Being a carny – traveling with The World’s Finest show.
For a couple of seasons – that is all I did know.
Being a dishwasher, a server, a busboy, a waiter, a manager
of a restaurant, many dimensions of life. I was egger
to come into contact with, to try and understand.
As fate would have it, understanding never came to this hand.
Today, a bum – forty eight years ago – father said
“ the best dressed bum in town ” would be my stead.
What goes around – at some point in time – comes around.
There is some truth to this, that I have certainly found.
Even though I have touched the edges of many a life.
Many places, pieces of each and everyone, not one has been
a place for me, a place I felt I belonged, the places I’ve seen
do not leave pillows for my spirit, beds to rest my soul, rife
with uncertainty, is my state, almost every day
I can find no place, no space for me to play.
Looking into this distorted collage
I wonder if it is but a mirage ?
My flaws lie in the heart of my feeling !, it is my sin !,
this belief that there is no place, no space where I fit in.
B. J. “A” 2
May 1st 2004
Long poem by
Joe Flach | Details |
I was a seventeen year old senior in a coed, catholic high school. Our gym classes however were still all boys and all girls. My senior year we had gym every other day and music every other day in the same time slot. The music classes, therefore, were also all boys or all girls.
She was a twenty-eight year old nun in her first teaching assignment. She was in way over her head. She was about five-foot-four and weighed practically nothing. The nuns in our school no longer wore habits and I remember thinking it was a good thing because she would probably fly away like Sally Fields. If you don’t know what I mean by that then you are too young to be reading my story.
The music class was a mad house. She could not control a room of twenty some boys bound and determined to make her life hell. I mean, music class? Really?
We never did the homework assigned; never answered her questions seriously; never believed her threats at discipline; wouldn’t accept the demerits she tried to hand out; and basically goofed off for the hour that was supposed to be dedicated to learning about music.
For some reason, she seemed too proud or too green or too determined to go to the principal or another teacher for help; and, sensing that, we knew we could get away with our childish behavior and so we did.
One day, a handful of us “got in trouble” and she said she wanted to talk to us after class. I was the only one that actually stayed. She tried to lecture me on my bad behavior but I guess my smirk was evidence it was not sinking in. Then, she started to cry, and for the first time I saw her as a person.
“What am I doing,” she cried. "I can’t do this. I am trying; I am really trying, but I am not cut out for this. Why are you boys so mean and hateful?”
I stood up in front of her not knowing what to do or what to say. I felt like a real jerk. I was a real jerk.
Tears poured down her face, which I finally recognized as being a pretty face. She bowed her head and just sobbed. In my awkward seventeen year old manner, I slowly opened my arms and allowed her to lean into me. And I hugged her while she wept.
At seventeen, I was no ladies’ man, and this crying nun was the first woman I had ever held so close to me. I could feel her breasts pressed against me; the heat emitting from her body; and, the delicate nature of her womanly form in my arms. I knew then that I was destined to go straight to hell for the thoughts that were going through my head and the feelings I felt between my legs.
She pulled away and whispered, “I am so sorry, I should not have done that. You may go.”
I simply said, “You know, you are doing fine, you just have a class of a bunch of butt holes”, and walked out of the room. It was that night that she started coming to see me in my dreams. To hell I go, for sure.
I wish I could tell you I had the moxie and the influence to whip that class into shape, but I did not. The mad house continued with one less student joining in the fun. I tried my best to behave, answer her questions, pay attention and feign interest in the topic of the day – but I was just one in a sea of monsters. I stayed after class and after school a few times to talk with her, ask her how she was doing, and see if I could help in any way. She was actually starting to get the hang of things and was able to focus on the few classes that were willing to learn.
At the end of the school year, I was one of the few students who had not enrolled in a college for the coming year. Because I was one of the better students, it caused a little bit of a fuss and a number of teachers talked to me about the huge mistake I was making taking some time off before going to college. It seems they were all convinced that if I did not start into college in the fall, I was doomed to never go to college. I challenged them by saying what they were really worried about was their statistics of percentage of students who went on to further their education.
During the last day of classes, the music teacher asked me to stay after class. It appears, it was her turn to try to talk some sense into me.
“So, I hear you are not going to college,” she said.
“No, I’m going to college … some day, just not this fall.”
“So what are you going to do?”
“I don’t know yet. Take some time off. Work. Nothing. I don’t know. Why is it so important to everyone? When the time is right, I’ll go to college.”
“They just care about you.”
“Bull loney,” I said, only it was another word.
She smiled at me. I had been dreaming about her now for six months. I changed the topic.
“Have you ever kissed a boy?”
She laughed, “You know, I grew up the same as every girl in this high school. I did have boyfriends.”
“Yeah, but have you ever kissed a boy,” I challenged.
“No. Not the way you mean.”
“Do you ever wonder what it would be like?”
“No. Never,” she lied.
“If I told you I will register for college if you kiss me, will you?”
“No. I believe you when you say you just need some time off. I think that is a good idea.”
Then she walked up close to me and stopped a heartbeat away. Suddenly, she reached down between my legs, grabbed the crouch of my pants and said, “Just don’t let this thing get you in trouble.”
She abruptly turned and walked out of the classroom while I tried to catch my breath.
During the graduation ceremony I saw her sitting with the other teachers and shared a private smile with her while walking back to my seat after being handed my diploma. I would never see her again … outside of my dreams.
I often think about my high school music teacher and my ticket straight to hell. Unfortunately, I never heeded her advice. That body part of mine she grabbed ahold of for a fleeting second those many years ago, has gotten me in trouble time and time again.
Long poem by
Mario DE PAZ | Details |
Was the place where we climbing down the bank
Then arrived, alpine and, for what was there
Such as, that any eyesight would be shrank.
Similar to landslide that in side bare
Before Trento the Adige just smote,
Or for shake or as missing supports were,
That from mountain top, where had to demote,
To end plain are so steep the rocks indeed,
That no path to any up could denote:
Likewise down that ravine one must proceed;
And on the rim of the broken abyss
Lied along of Crete the infamous weed
Who was conceived in the cow false amiss;
And when he saw us, then himself he bit,
The way of guy on whom anger insists.
My sage toward him shouted: “Maybe it
You think that Atene’s duke is now here,
Who up in world to death you could commit?
Go away, beast, since this is not a mere
Learner from your sister already trained
But he is to see your pains as appear”.
As a bull which sudden becomes unchained
When it already received the deathblow,
And to move is not able, but jumps strained,
Likewise the Minotaur acted then so;
And that sage then shouted: “Through passage run:
While it is furious, better you go”.
So we our path then down rapid begun
Through those heavy stones, often not stable
Under my feet, by the new weight just won.
I was thoughtful, and he: “You are able
To think about this ravine, under guard
Of that bestial wrath I could disable.
The time, you now must know at this regard,
I came down here into the lowest hell.
This fallen rock had not yet crashed down hard.
But slightly before, if I recall well,
That came over the one who the huge prey
To Dis withdrew from the supernal shell,
Everywhere the high valley foul and grey
Trembled so that the universe I thought
Felt love, for which somebody trusts a way
Of world repeatedly to chaos brought;
And at that time this very ancient rock
Then here and elsewhere to revolve just ought.
But address eyes down valley, we now dock
At the blood bank in which is boiling now
Who other people with wildness could sock”.
Oh blind greed and too crazy anger bow,
Which indeed spurs us on in our life short,
And in eternal so bad to endow!
I saw a wide trench in bow self-contort,
As the one which is all the plane around,
According to what had told my escort;
And between foot of bank and it, compound
In group centaurs run, well armored with darts,
As used to do in world hunting and hound.
Seeing us climbing down, everyone departs,
And three of them then moved just toward us
With bows and arrows as their ready parts;
And one shouted from far: “At what distress
Along this coast now getting down are you?
Tell us right now; else my bow arrows shoots”
My master told: “the answer shall in short
Be given by us to Chiron forth on:
Bad was your will always prone to distort”
Then touched me, and told: Nexus is that one,
Who for the handsome Deianira died,
And by himself , the self-revenge was done.
And the one halfway, gazing his breast wide,
Is the great Chiron, who Achilles fed;
The other is Pholus, who rage complied.
Thousands and thousands at trench are there spread,
Darting any soul which tries to come out
From blood much more than their sin mislead”
We went closer to those lean beasts to scout;
Chiron took a dart, and then with the nock
Pushed back his beard to jaw ready to clout.
After he had uncovered his mouth block,
Told then to his mates: “Are you aware
That the guy back moves what he has to knock?
This way do not act feet of the deads bare”.
And my good duke, who just was at his breast,
Where the two natures are well joined and share,
Answered: “He is living, and is so pressed
That I have this valley dark him to show;
Not for delight, but for need is this quest.
Somebody from alleluia moved although
And then committed me to this task new:
He is not a thief, nor to steal I go.
But for that virtue for which I move through
My passage now on such a savage way,
Give us one of yours, to be a guide true,
And where is ford be able to display,
And also carry this one on his back,
Since he isn’t a spirit that fly may”.
Chiron then turned on his head the right whack,
And told Nexus: “Come back and guide them so,
And make move aside other groups’ attack”-
Now with the trusty escort we could go
Along the border of the boiling red,
Where the boiled were shouting their pain to show.
I saw people close to the edge of dread;
And great centaur told: “These evil tyrants are
Who bloodily acted and wildness shed.
Here are just cried the grim sins by desper;
Here is Alexander and Dionisio grim
Who gave Sicily years of pains with scar.
And that brow with black hair on him,
Is Azzolino, and the other who has fair hair,
Is Opizzo from Este, who looks so dim
Was killed by his stepson in world up there”.
Then I revolved toward poet, and he told:
“This one as first from now, me second bear”.
Just beyond on the centaur had to hold
Above some people who up to his throat
Looked as from that boiling tried to unfold.
He showed us a spirit well alone to float,
Telling: “That one in God’s lap had to cut
The heart dripping on Thames you can yet note”.
After that I saw people who out of river uncut
Kept their heads and their breasts at all;
Ad of these I recognized more than somewhat.
So more and more the depth became so small
Of that blood, and griddled also the feet,
Until the ditch our pace could not appall.
“As you can see here in a way concrete
The boiling stream becoming less and less”
Told the centaur, “I whish for you be neat
That the other part gives more and more stress
Toward the bottom, till is reached a state
Where tyranny is stricken in excess.
Divine justice can here sting and abate
That Attila who was on earth a scourge,
Pirro and Sesto; for eternal fate
Tears sucks, in boiling river to submerge,
Rinier from Corneto, and Rinier mad,
Who wherever wars always made emerge”.
Then turned his way and passed the river sad.
Long poem by
Isaiah Zerbst | Details |
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.]