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Long Metaphor Poems

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Long Poems
Long poem by David Furlong | Details |

The Frog Prince - Part 1

A funny frog called Mr Snog,
once lived beside a slimy bog,
he was a most peculiar fellow,
his hat was red, his boots were yellow,
his waistcoat was an olive green,
the strangest sight you’ve ever seen,
no matter where you’ve lived or been.      

This self-same frog, called Mr Snog
had woes of every catalogue.
To move forward he hopped backward,
making life extremely awkward.
His funny face with fretful frown
made him such a comic clown,
for his whole world was upside down.

Now once the frog, named Mr Snog,				
who lived beside the slimy bog,
had been a very different fellow,			
his boots then red, his hat was yellow.
A handsome prince of some renown,
upon his head a golden crown,
and nothing then was upside down.

For then his name, was not the same,
around his realm they would proclaim;
‘He is the bold, the great Prince Gons,		
whose fame is sung in many songs.’
In everything he did excel,
gallant, witty, brave as well,
until misfortune him befell.

Alas to say, in early May,
a witch had happened by his way.
She really was a hideous hag,
and nasty things were in her bag.
An eye of newt, a puppy’s tail,
six slimy slugs and half a snail,
some grizzly bits to make you quail.

Prince Gons had rode from his abode,			
to find this witch had blocked his road,		
‘Out of my way you wretched bag,
out of my way you ugly hag.
I am the bold, the great Prince Gons,		
whose fame is sung in many songs,
to whom this land around belongs.’		

With such disdain he did proclaim,
the exalted nature of his name!
He stared, he glared, he leered and peered,
upon that witch that looked so weird,
‘Out of my way, or you’ll pay dear.’
Yet not one word did cause her fear,
for being deaf, she could not hear.

But from his look she umbrage took,
and so that witch resolved to cook,
within her pot a fiendish brew,
to teach that prince a thing or two.
And setting out to cast a spell,
by calling demons out of hell,
she brewed a stew - with ghastly smell.

This stew she threw – it didn’t miss! –
all over Gons. Then with a kiss,
upon his face - oh what a joke -
she vanished in a puff of smoke!
Gons then had a nasty feeling,				
round and round the sky was wheeling,
sending all his senses reeling.

When he awoke, this self-same bloke,
could only make a feeble croak.
And to his horror he now found,
that everything had turned around,
shrunk to a frog, whose name was Snog,
who sat bemused within a bog,				
with woes of every catalogue.

Within this bog, there was a log,
and on this log, sat Mr Snog,
gazing mournfully at the sky,
eyeing all that passed him by.
From time to time he’d try to speak,
with feeble croak, so sad, so weak,
his life just then was really bleak.

When meaning ‘Yes’ - as you might guess -
was not the word he did express. 		
Instead of ‘Yes’, he would croak ‘No!’
All were confused and all said so,			
but if, perhaps, you knew him better,			
you could substitute each letter,
and then it really wouldn’t matter.

Moving backward, never forward,
made his life extremely awkward.
Now who could help him, who could tell
him, how to break that witch's spell?
He flopped around within the mire,
never growing one inch higher,
until a meeting did transpire.

One sunny day in early May,
a princess chanced to pass that way,
her hair was gold, her figure neat,
she walked upon such dainty feet.
that now squelched in the murky mire,
nearly ruining her attire,
her situation was quite dire.

Just for a laugh, she'd left the path,
to cut her journey quite in half,
she was sure it would be quicker,
she was sure that she was slicker,
than her nasty little brother,
who’d said, ‘Race you home to mother.’
-	How they hated one another!

While she was stuck within the muck,
bemoaning all her rotten luck,
She then perceived this curious fellow,		
whose hat was red and boots were yellow,
it was our hero Mr Snog,
every inch a funny frog,
sitting gormless on a log.

‘Help, help,’ she cried . ‘I'm terrified
I’m really lost, I need a guide,
to take me from this murky mire,
that's totally ruined my attire.
Please help me now. I'm sure you know,
how from this place, the way to go.’
But Snog, when meaning ‘Yes’, croaked ‘No!’.

She was confused, she was bemused,
that this odd creature had refused,
to help her in her hour of need.
'What can I say, how shall I plead?'
She pondered so, then filled with woe,			
wept, ‘Won’t you show the way to go?’
But Snog, whilst thinking ‘Yes’, croaked ‘No!’

‘I implore you, I'll adore you,
something, anything I’ll do for you.			
just name your price, I know the king,
he’ll give you almost everything.			
Oh please don't leave me in distress,
oh please don't leave me in this mess.’
Alas, our hero just croaked, ‘Yes!’

First she shivered, then she quivered,
then finally, she grew quite livid.
She screamed at this outrageous fellow,
whose hat was red and boots were yellow,
‘You are the most obnoxious frog,
to leave me helpless in this bog,
to wander aimless in the fog.’

Then on a whim, she grabbed a limb,
with all her strength she hurtled him,
high into the silvery sky,
wondering if this frog might fly.
But as she flipped him, her foot tripped,		
upon her back our princess tipped,
into the slimy mire she slipped.

Our hero, Snog, was quite agog,
for being airborne, for a frog,
was a most extraordinary feeling,
sending all his senses reeling.
The sky and earth became a blur;
falling now he did not miss her,
landing on her open kisser!

Now, as she fell, she’d given a yell,
which helped to break that witch's spell.
For when she kissed the hapless Snog,		
it changed him back from being a frog,
and to a prince he now returned,
who sat there looking unconcerned.
whilst in the slimy mire she squirmed.

Copyright © David Furlong | Year Posted 2015


Long poem by T Wignesan | Details |

Prizes for Ultimate Sacrifices - Part One

Prizes for Ultimate Sacrifices


    prizes for the abstemious  for abstinence  chastity ?
                 the countless occasions for love you let slip                                   

          prizes for stopping 
                                   smoking by yourself  
                                      drinking even Bordeaux
                                  munching on the meat of beasts
                                      crustacean flesh  fish  fowl or eggs                
                     
                      for honesty with oneself        
                 for commitment to lost causes
                                    the ability to see through their deviousnesses
                                and refraining to do anything about it at all
                           for helping them at one’s own peril                                                            
        for giving away what you direly need for yourself and your dependents
                   for not thinking of your own future just to bolster someone else’s
               for depriving yourself of the pleasures of the day
               when you can go out and buy them with what you got and still have enough leftover 

         for spending hours and hours every so often just listening to those who need to unburden themselves on you while you serve them aperitifs then coffee/tea and finally end up cooking dinner and bedding them down in your only bedroom while you may hardly stretch yourself out in amongst the books and things and boxes of files of unread drafts and such and wake in the middle of the night because the suffering soul behind the wall is moaning and tossing and apostrophising aloud in your bed calling your name out at every fiery phrase for all you know accusing you for all his troubles plus those of his friends near ones dear ones and/or dependents

      prizes for doing everything by yourself
          looking after yourself  cleaning the kitchen washing the clothes by hand doing the dishes in cold water showering cold to save on hot water repairing the car with spare unfit parts from the breakers learning languages all by yourself typing your own manuscripts and those of others starting your own journal and publishing others typing writing setting up photocopying designing printing binding marketing writing letters and posting them after long waits at queues attending to the plumbing redoing the parquet papering and/or painting your own but rented walls shopping on the cheap after hours and hours of comparing prices at different places keeping tabs on your dependents defending yourself against marauding civil servants politicos fighting your own legal battles after reading up on difficult incomprehensible legal texts writing dozens and dozens of letters before you take them to court and lose because the blasted bugger who represents you in the civil case makes it a point of holding back the essential documents which you know were never submitted to the judge although the list of documents exchanged lists them and you can’t check on the judge’s file because you are not a lawyer or solicitor legally constituted in the case and you need a lawyer to represent you in a civil case

      prizes for putting up with women
                                               who tell you they love you to distraction and would rather die than be parted from you even during the live-long day who vow by suttee but who use you make you marry them by piling lie upon lie present you with a baby not your own while they get pumped by others and let you share the slime the spittal and the shit in their system and the syphilitic rot that will gnaw at your spine years and years hence and leave you with the baby to bring up while they harrass you with complaints and cases about how you may be bringing him/her up with right of access charges rights which they never really exercise themselves and when the baby is no more a baby come around to collect the lad or lass as a crutch for their old age by telling him/her all the lies about how you let them down how you tortured and beat them up how you shat upon them how you made them slave day in and day out and to top it all didn’t bother even to shag them 

        prizes for keeping quiet and taking it all
    in without riposte without carping without being even rude in return
               for bearing with all the slithering over crimes they rob you cheat you  shit with your wives twist your children’s minds up into a multiple Turk’s head  commit missed murders against you and when you discover their intentions the criminals commit more crimes to cover it all up use misinformation as a superpanacea to lull themselves into believing they are innocent dogooders after all doing it for the patrie for the defence of their nation the raison d’Etat without making it known how you the victim without a proper background without a useful education without friends who would swear by you without the citizenship bestowing rights without the State any state on your side without the passport to secrete yourself away without a job without the money put away for the purpose of facing up to them these the faceless cowards hiding behind their secret societies their secret services their secret cabals their secret clubs schools lodges cafés cabinets centres yachts arts and crafts academies royal this and royal that my foot college unions parties and programmes                               

(Continued in Part Two: owing to length restrictions)

April 2, 1997 –From the collection : longhand notes (1999)
© T. Wignesan – Paris, 2016 

Copyright © T Wignesan | Year Posted 2016


Long poem by Gary Bateman | Details |

Poetic Encryption Like Ancient Egyptian

Poetic Encryption Like Ancient Egyptian

This terror and threat to poetic clarity,
Becomes a pet rock for some poets.

Words do count for sure, but so does
Clarity unless poets put a mask on.

Encryption can be used to mask 
Certain vatic pretensions that poets
Harbor, at times, when waxing eloquently
About some trendy theme or some idea
Or notion deemed as avant-garde. 

If hieroglyphics were to be readily used
In our now advanced world of modernity,
Would they be viewed as:
A rifacimento? A renaissance? A code?
It all could be plain nonsense too!
Or maybe not . . . 

In T. S. Eliot’s, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,”
He enchants and captivates his readers to a rare and
Flavorful taste of vers libre, if one might be so bold, 
That is selectively sparing, and yet, well-calibrated,
With intermittent sprinklings of superbly crafted 
Visual imagery and eloquent tonal alliteration—
And varied meter, rhythm, and rhyme.
 
“Prufrock” is palpable with emotion and metaphor, yet—
Detached from a ready explanation of the delicious
Power of the words with which Eliot mesmerizes his
Readers with the devout cleverness of a Pied Piper.
 
One could see the eternal Footman
And hear his snicker—and be afraid;
One could roll one’s trousers;
One could dare to eat a peach;
One could walk upon the beach;
One could hear the mermaids sing;
But will the mermaids sing to him?
Only Eliot really truly knows . . .
The real Prufrockian mien here.

Are not such metaphors there . . .
To make us think?
To enchant our senses?
To play on our fears?
To be emotive?

And, yes . . . 
To tantalize our passions?
And, yes . . . 
To excite our psychic yearnings?

Yes . . . Contemplation is always vital!

Some poets speak in a self-tribal code.
Sometimes artful obfuscation is the real goal,
And sometimes—maybe not.

A cacophonic scramble of
Demonstrative and passionate
Words, thoughts, emotions.
All so pure and all so real,
And all in the poet’s mind!
All so exact and all so real!
 
Some, like the legendary Sylvia Plath,
Bring the reader to a forlorn world of
Lost faith, utter despair, and loneliness
In the midst of such a sad dream world.
Plath’s lyric poem — “Edge”
Summons readers to the brink;
Occurring one week before her 
Untimely suicide.

The power and symbolism
Resident in this, her final poem,
Point toward . . .
A perfection, A completion,
A tragic tribalism.

Plath’s symbology is both
Intense and compelling;
Forming its own sense of
Encryption while embellishing
A supernatural aura of immortality.

The redoubtable Ezra Pound in his
“Hugh Selwyn Mauberley,” and in
Many other of his complex poems,
Personifies a certain form of encryption
With his use of symbols and metaphors,
A mix of foreign languages, and a definite
Convulsion of syntax which makes for an 
Intellectual “Rite of Passage” defying, at times,
A clear analysis and ready understanding.
	
Pound in “Mauberley,” writes on various
Levels begging much pre-knowledge from
Each reader while amply teasing us with:
His gnomic predilection for novel themes;
His thirst for the unexpected and unusual; 
His formidable knowledge and language forte;
His array of uniquely woven word tapestries;
And his referential flair for striking aphorisms.

Pound does all of this so magnificently . . .
All the while forming imagery challenging
A reader’s sense of understanding:
Leaving a sense of syntactical encryption Writ Large!
Always challenging and never ever dull!
That is, if one’s cup of tea is reveling in the complex!

There is a profound literary sense to what some may say
Is Pound’s Janus-faced proclivity for genius and madness.
Pound will not disappoint you regardless of which bipolar
Face you ascribe to him.
Although, contrast and comparison are very important . . . 

Yet, I proffer that deep thinking and sometimes actually
Being confused at times . . .
May result ultimately in a true epiphany,
Leading each of us to a spirit of greater understanding!

I end with John Keats, who has left all of us, as poets,
With his immeasurable sense of naturalistic Humanism.
Keats’ pursuit of metaphor, nuance, descriptive imagery,
And sagacious symbology reflect the highest degree of
Poetic mastery and a strong sense of perspicacity obvious
In all of his works!

Keats also uses a type of poetic encryption—
With his diction, imagery, thoughts, and verse syncopation;
He’s quite elegant with his varied and fluent thematic reveries.
They’re always a joy to decipher, while leaving us to bask in 
Their powerful sense of clarity and persuasive meaning!

Many of Keats’ works reflect this form of encryption . . . 
“La Belle Dame Sans Merci”
Particularly comes to mind in this instance,
As well as his famous “Ode” narratives;
And his superb Grecian epic fragment: “The Fall of Hyperion,”
Presents the reader with a veritable smorgasbord of contrasts
And imagery, and an imaginative view of the classical conflict
Between the Olympians and the Titans! 

Divining the complex, chaotic, and unpredictable
In our world of arcane symbolism and imagery,
Reflect the modern world we live in today.
Poetic Encryption is indeed . . . 
So like Ancient Egyptian!

Hieroglyphics, after all, form their own
Sense of imagery and word pictures . . . 
Analogous to what we do today with the 
Words, images, metaphors, emotions, and
Symbols in our poetry!

Poetic Encryption is so like Ancient Egyptian! 
Amen! Amen! Amen! 

Gary Bateman, Copyright © All Rights Reserved,
April 25, 2016 (Narrative)

Copyright © Gary Bateman | Year Posted 2016


Long poem by Andres Rocha | Details |

The Raisin in the Box of Chocolates

"I agree," Bayard murmured while looking at the few people walking I across the street. Summer was over and the boy was beginning to get frustrated at the sight of girls wrapped in blankets of clothes. 

"Bayard do you even know what I just said?" Lyel interrupted his brother's observations. "Could you at least pretend to care once in a while?"

"I heard what you said man, relax." He took the cup off of the table without bothering to turn his head. He sipped his coffee in the most nonchalant manner. 

"I hope that caramel frapuchino is to your liking. It cost some people money you know."

"It's decent."

Lyel turned his attention back to the small pile of papers sitting on the table, "Mhm how to end this chapter. Maybe I should end it with the girl confessing." 

"Stop with your story for a while or two and take a look at the outside world. By the way don't forget to give that girl a body that makes the guys stare." 

"No. See you weren't paying attention when I was telling you about my story. Women don't need bodies for a man to love them. Why do I even share my ideas with you?" Lyel placed the papers back inside a blue folder.

"Because you have no one else. Finish your coffee after all you paid for it. The coffee here is good after all."

"You almost did not want to come in here in the first place."

"That's because this place looks like crap from the outside." 

"Anyways how was trick or treating with your friends yesterday?"

"Finally a topic that doesn't involve your lame romances. It was one of the best ones so far. We went to this neighborhood on the west side of the city. Bro you should have been there. Haha a whole neighborhood full of girls with sexy Halloween costumes. I couldn't decide wether the chick with the devil costume was better than the one with the cat costume. Man awesome night." Bayard placed his hands behind his head and laid back on the chair.

"What about the haunted houses? The candy?" 

"There was this one house where there was a graveyard and zombies. This girl was too scared to go in it. So I told her I'll hold her. We all got good candy in that house."

"I hope you saved some candy for me too."

"I did. Some candy corn. I'm pretty sure you like it."

The waiter went to the brothers' table inquiring if they needed anything else. Lyel politely declined and thanked the waiter for his kindness. Breakfast was almost over and the scent of coffee was beginning to fade. There was only a few people in the shop. An old man lost in the swirling of his coffee and a young man sitting in the corner reading.

"So as I was saying. When I got home I ate some twix and kit kats, but then I found this box of chococate chips. Strange because this was the first time I received this box before." 

"It must be only in that neighborhood."

"I opened it and at the top was a raisin. One raisin in a box of chocolate chips."

The sound of the bell on the front door rung more frequently as the hands on the clock tired in their endless cycle. Lyel's coffee no longer had steam. It was getting cold.

"What did you do with the raisin?"

"I threw it away and ate the chocolates. What else would I do with it? I was there for the chocolates."

"Eat the raisin. Why would you throw away a perfectly good raisin away?"

"No one choses the raisin over the chocolates man. Why would you? What if the raisin was poisoned?

"The raisin is ten times less likely to be poisoned than the chocolates since there are more brutes than intelligent people." 

"Hey stop being a smart ass. Let's put this in real world terms alright. Let's say the chocolate chips are the hot girls in the devil and cat Halloween costumes. The raisin is some ugly chick in a chipmunk costume or something. Who would you chose?"

"The girl in the chipmunk costume. Looks have nothing to do with my decision."

"Bro are you serious? Even if you were insane that is a no-brainer."

"And that is exactly what is wrong with society. No brains. I'll pick the raisin over the chocolates any day and I'm sure I'm not the only one. Even if I was I'm not afraid to walk alone in my opinion."

"So what you are saying is that instead of a box of chocolates we should give a box of raisins on Valentine's day?"

"Maybe we should since people have forgotten what really matters."

The shop had more people now and people were beginning to stare at the two brothers arguing. Bayard noticed this and took the last sip of his coffee. He brushed his dark hair back and stood up. "Whatever I finished my coffee. Let's go."

Copyright © Andres Rocha | Year Posted 2015


Long poem by Poetryof Providence | Details |

Conflicted or star crossed lovers

Not a day goes by I don't think of you
you have permeated my fortress and walk freely in all its rooms
(examining it's furnishings)
how did I allow you entry without the
usual search scan and seizure ?
I'ts like a foreign substance and all
my antibodies are seeking to eradicate
your presence (anti-christs)
My mind and heart find your entrance exhilarating 
like ecstasy ( a neurologically happy drug ,
which by the way I've never imbibed in but the
other one I'm only slightly familiar with)
My body wants to throw you off like some
intruder to the death it lies in bondaged slavery of.
I finally understand the WAR.
I want to isolate this substance and imbibe at will
or as often as I desire.
There's no corner on the market for this substance,
you can only get this by freely accepting it as your 
own life blood , the loss of which kills us , but it's
flow is what keeps us alive.
I desire to lay in it's bliss
like basking in a warm sun's rays
unfortunately I burn easily , so I usually limit 
my exposure to substances I feel may do me damage.
But OH , HOW GOOD this FEELS , as though I should
have been born to this naturally .
But NO , love is not the natural substance of the world
in it's battlements and fortresses erected by men and
so thoroughly indoctrinated into his very being .
I just want to bottle this and share it with everyone.
But everyone "knows" every really really great substance
wears off and kicking the habit is way way painful .
But I want to suck this up and live in it , to have the heat
of it never dim , until it is an all consuming fire that lights
everything in it's sphere . Yes LOVE JUNKIE , child of God
a shameless addict to truth about the paths people choose
to "lose" themselves on . 
I've been like a bloodhound sniffing out every trail looking
for this substance the one that transforms you into fully
brilliantly vibrantly alive , and to roll in it until every fiber
of my being is saturated with it's fragrance.
The factory that manufactures this is built within , 
and I want unlimited access  , but my own body has
set up perimeters and walls to fence off my full access 
to my own God given life source ..(the curse)
You can only have full admittance when you can use
it's power to give life and not destroy others , to be 
able to manage it usefully for the benefit of all.
But I'm a natural indulgent in what feels good , 
substances always on the intake , seeking to have a 
balm that shields me from being abused or seeing 
my own abuses of Life. My ability to utilize a substance
so powerful is limited by my training , my will and my
exposure to everything that seeks to sell it on the open
market like a thrill seeker , or cheap whore who can be
had for a bouquet and dinner , which is quickly consumed
in one night and disappears tomorrow . Nothing that the
world offers can even slightly imitate the magnitude and 
power residing where Love dwells . When you've been 
allowed to taste its manna , the desire for a plateful
is now not even enough but the drive to constant partaking
of its presence is now an all consuming fire and I am 
driven to sign up for the lifetime plan . For better is a life
that feeds on love daily , than to choke and suffocate on
the bowls of hatred served up daily in the worlds menu.
I have relished the view from opposite sides of the room ,
when you're ready  for the permanent plan you will 
have to crossover to the other side . I know you read me,
like the good book , and when you understand you can
hide it from the world , but not from me , or yourself .
We want full access to the wellspring of life and love , I'm
willing to share the source , but it's a limited partnership (MLP)
on a lifetime plan , but it's riches are infinite and can only
be provided by the source. If you're willing to crossover , 
I'll allow you re-entry and full access ... Love  


COPYRIGHT © 2013 C Michael Miller
via Duboff Law Group LLC

Copyright © Poetryof Providence | Year Posted 2014


Long poem by Russell Banks | Details |

The Catch and The Tremble

Lady dearest, fair Romeo, is this the name
the title you wish to bestow upon me
or is it one shared among multiple hearts shot at by multiple nets
I ask only in truth, in search of truth, in confidence
for I know you dare not tread the line to lie to me
Dearest Lady, fair Scarlett, I choose this title among others
for you are the dearest one to me
and if you dare catch my honesty as false
here, let me bare my chest so you may pierce it through
No, no need love to go through the extreme
only indulge me sweet prince and answer these inquiries
Romeo, dear Romeo, do I resonate within you? 
My Scarlett, you should know by now, realize by now
you resonate more than I dare to share
you are unattainable yet you have attained my attention
a dream you are, a dream come true hazel princess
Your compliments are grand nor can I deny I'm flustered
but flattery will not ease my mind
so tell me, 'dear hero', am I the catch in your breath
or the tremble upon your lips? 
Heroine, you are the catch in my breath upon trembling lips
whispering your name to starry nights, craving your kiss
so indulge an inquiry of my own: 
Have I answered your intricate questions with satisfying responses
or must I convince you more of the love I shower upon you
Convince me if you can, convince me if you please
but riddle me this
do I rest within your thoughts and dreams
or do I only brush against the seams of your tattered heart
quaking your very rhythm darling
and is it me, a sigh beneath the moon
with my imprint scarred upon your flesh my love
as my fingers trace the etching of you every night
Brush? No, my dear, you are the first aid kit in my thoughts
the glue in my dreams, the queen of hearts in my slumber
stitching up the frayed seams of my tattered heart
Allow me another question to ask
do you cascade into silence as my heavy voice lulls you to sleep
as I sigh to the moon whom always keeps me an arms reach 
away from you
so here, place your imprint upon me if you dare I won't care
just as long as you don't mind me saying I'm yours
Dear Scarlett, is this all you ask of me? 
Dear Scarlett, it's true, all I want is you.
Scarlett, is this it or is there something else you ask of me? 
And in a split second, my heart dropped two feet when she...
Romeo, there is one more thing you can do...die for me...
in swift succession I bore his chest and pierced it through
in swift succession she bare my chest and pierced it through
My eyes, my vision, they were becoming faint
and I panicked as my fingers turned from ghostly white to red 
Romeo, she shouts as I struggle to stand
Romeo, she screams, I didn't mean for you to die on me literally
you are my hero, your heart made of gold
though tattered and broken, I believed you invincible
Scarlett, he said through coughs and weakness
Scarlett, he said as he fell to one knee crying
Scarlett, you are the world to me
and in truth you're the second I've died for
please Scarlett, don't protest, let me speak
Scarlett, he said as he pulled me in for embrace
Scarlett, I'd rather die by your hand
than be without you forever
Scarlett, though my time has come and my chest broken
my heart will stay yours always
The last words to part his lips as he fell from the world
I love you my queen...tell them my story
His story, my story, our story means
don't fall for her, don't fall for him and
treat him like a liar, take her for granted
Make her feel like a queen, let him be your hero
and if you give her your heart, die for her figuratively
and if you give him your heart, make him promise to not let you
bleed

Copyright © Russell Banks | Year Posted 2016


Long poem by Rhonda Johnson-Saunders | Details |

Out of Control


I spin, faster and faster… losing control, I am a propeller rising. Once, you were my mystery to solve – my challenge, my highest vista to climb. You lifted me to your private skies. Spread out before me on red-winged flights, eradicated stars came back to life, painted iridescent by your own two hands. What could only be crayoned by inferior men. All aglow, the universe circled my head - round and round till the dizziness came, infatuation only to blame. I spin…slower, rhythmic, scraping. I am a pinwheel on softest breeze. memories come…memories go. With a crystal crown of constellations, you adorned my flowing hair – locks spun golden, locks I loosened for you. I became a glowing body for you to orbit, a fiery flood of sunlight traveling, Venus gifted in violet dusk, auroras of ribbon braided… I spin…slanting, lower, on tip-toes. I am a ballerina with an audience of one. I watched you watch me in light of all things. I wanted to be center of your universe… rings of Saturn encircled you and I. Mercury’s fire blazed through what was us. Blue-silver splattered moons orbited our sleep. I kissed the moon rock I named after you. I kissed you and only you until dawn slipped between the warmth of our linen sheets. I caught you in my arms time after time, clouds dappled with your eyes floated by… doting, they released scintillating showers upon a wilting flower. When it was time for you to catch me, you were gone…taking with you part of me. I fell hard…back to earth, stained crimson, star-struck. Forever is a long time to chase shooting stars through echoing space. I trusted you, trusted only you, trusted you with me. I rusted, no protection from your harsh elements. We all come back to reality of a spinning earth… we rise or fall, move or hide, heed the call or lie. We come to the self-sharpened point of swim or die. Time rushes by… I sat next to you, held your hand, feeling like my own miraculous sky, regaining my identity… while you read Hemingway, a man’s man you’d say. I spoke of the poem I wrote for you another day. “Yeah, yeah…Aha”, you whispered…my words dismissed, a foreign language never understood. Space and time altered our skies; below, your lies became our demise. Our footprints disappeared before my eyes. In my own miraculous sky, I have slowed my pace, aware of my mistakes, my fear, my grace. I embrace beauty, peace, tears I've cried, the ride… Dawn came early this new day, I drove away, weaved around a pothole, almost crashed. The gravel road rattled my faith. I started to spin again…disoriented, I faltered, but I never turned back. I wonder if I avoided my own catastrophe, saved face, or a little of both… I remember how I asked you about the meaning of love. You turned away, reading Williams that day, madness and genius you’d say, I planted my feet, met your eyes, then marched away. Head held high, you dimmed under a starlit sky. I searched myself and found the brightest star… it led me home. Now, I brush my fingers lightly across a constellation on high… Pegasus, I think. Only to realize, it’s reflection mottles in a rippling puddle below... beauty awakened by my grounded feet. Rhonda Johnson-Saunders, 4/11/15

Copyright © Rhonda Johnson-Saunders | Year Posted 2015


Long poem by Timothy Hicks | Details |

When the World Grew Wings - FULL

There once came a day
when the world took flight
('twas only a handful
who gaped at the sight)
For when she spread her wings
so few could believe;
and fewer still
could keep alive the dream,
that had awakened for all to see.
Galileo Galilei took center stage,
as we flipped through yet another page
of shocking discovery.
But poor Gally, took to fame,
an a pedestal so lonely;
and far from raising eyebrows only,
questions also, were being raised.

Like what happened to her perch
when she flew across the star laden sky?
Did not everyone's heart give a lurch
as we kissed that lovely fowl goodbye?

No longer a disc with perilous edges
that sat lackadaisically on God's thumb.
She instead became a turquoise marble
dancing circles around the sun.
Without a single drop to spritz Saturn,
she held her oceans marvelously intact.
Though quite unknowingly, in performance
all along. Einstein, nonetheless, dissected the task.

Copernicus and his daring gang were all the rage,
but it wasn't kind to the long-dried ink of a holy page.
For you see, when this our humble home took wings,
rather than elated - the world became sore afraid,
exclaiming, "Who let her loose? I'll have his head in a noose!"
And rather than let her try her feathers, they kept Earth in a cage
(Maya Angelou, God rest her soul, would be dismayed)

For five centuries prior
so few could admire
how beautifully she flew
beyond heaven's blue!

Nietzsche grabbed a shovel and began to dig.
Others tagged along and said, "Make it double!"
As the world gained a freedom it ne'er had before
(but who could have known what was in store?)
Far beyond the wars, that ensued shortly after
that disco ball was plucked from the rafters
of God's domain. (some dared to claim
that disco wasn't the only thing
gasping for breath). As the doubts began to linger
of magic and her validity;
we spewed words of such acidity,
for no longer a yo-yo tied to a deity's finger,
we reclaimed our rightful crowns with rigor,
taking back the earth for ourselves
(that beautiful globe upon the shelf)

Who cut the string?
and who clipped her wings?
(the wings, that is, of my heart
in mourning for my Everything)

Why when she flew,
did she leave me feeling blue?
Finding out her annual circuit
I ask, was it worth it,
when tied to her leg
was a World-view
in which my heart was glued?

YES!

A thousands times YES!

Did you not see her soar through azure space?
Nor catch a glimpse of her beautiful face?
Could a moment such as this be replaced?
As we flip through yet another chapter and verse
of boldface discovery far from terse.
History will never be the same
as we come to this nebulous new age;
But know this my friends ...

... the ink is far from dried upon the page.
Rather it has taken a detour into our veins,
through our bones, and through our fingers
- bellowing out our mouths like an opera singer!
Watch as the melody rains
upon every doubter's parade.
Yes, the world took her wings
letting rest the charade
of her former statuesque.

But far from burying magic and her wonder,
every single time we stop to ponder,
it is MAGIC we continue to uncover.

Copyright © Timothy Hicks | Year Posted 2016


Long poem by Odin Roark | Details |

Walking Meditation

Walking Meditation
                    by Odin Roark

“And I thought marriage was hard.”

Taking Meditation for a walk
nags me with why I’m such a failure at this.
It knows what I go through every morning.

I sit, cross my legs (kill myself with that lotus thing)
breathe deep, listen to my breath, et al.,
while all I hear is the traffic beyond the walls.
With eyes closed, all I see are
re-runs and first-runs, trailers, montages, full lengths,
pictures I can’t fade out.

So…

We walk,
Meditation and I.

I’m so bad at imagining anything, you know?
Distraction always finds me.
Like the mangy mutt from the brownstone
across the way.  Not satisfied with just relieving
himself under a spindly tree, or on the
block’s fire hydrant.  No, he strides up beside me,
insisting with a obnoxious whimper, he’ll keep
me company.

Usually, a nameless dumpster-cat finally
gets his attention, and off he chases.
Every morning.  Same alley opening.

Not far ahead, panhandlers take up their craft.
Cardboard signs for begging,
or extended empty cup,
topped with the phony eyes
of an Academy Award winner.

Meditation gives me its elbow, and we proceed.
It knows the real test of concentration is the bakery.
This is a storefront that should be banned.  Bagels.
Not just any kind of bagels, the best.  That aroma
alerts the nose and the eyes just give up.  The ears capitulate.
and I hear nothing.  My eyes see nothing.  And for a moment,
just a moment, there is the sublime “nothingness” of
Meditation’s mission.  But only for a moment.
My stomach growls its usual curse of hunger, and…

I trudge on to the flower box.
I’m blocks away from home now
and always stop in front of it.
Safely wedged between the window bars and the glass,
its lone flower, always in bloom, winks.
An all-season survivor (most likely rescued
from a Chinese restaurant table)
its faded plastic leaves and pink petals
soaks up the new life of fresh air, sunlight
and pedestrian smiles. No one passes
this window box without stopping
and staring.  If you’re lucky, you'll arrive
just as the elderly lady, the mistress of
the one-room flat, raises the window
and gives the singular flower a drink,
usually the melted ice of her early
morning wake-up highball.

My doctor thinks these walks with Meditation
are good for me, but my other walking buddy,
Conscience, who inevitably tags along,
knows I’m a fraud.  I can’t do introspection justice,
back there, or on the sidewalk.  I can barely
make real these walks, let alone be of
any encouragement to my wannabe helpful buddy.

I’m a hopeless failure in making friends
with anything, except sleeping, and even
that relationship is starting to piss me off.
Takes up way too much time now, always 
wanting my devotion, which I willingly give. 

It’s just…

Well, there comes a time when job, marriage,
kids, you know the drill, the whole calamity
that demands an even more special attention.

So...

Conscience says I should not give up on Meditation.
Back there, I mean.  Back in the padded cell
they gave me.  The place I never leave
except for these walks that seem to go nowhere.

Copyright © Odin Roark | Year Posted 2015


Long poem by Vicki Acquah | Details |

When Truth Came A Calling

There's A knock on my door,
 I ask "who is there". ?
Standing there are five faces. . 
They answer" IN UNISON "Truth"
I ask" Why the disguise"...?
It is I,"Truth" they all refrain.
 
How will I know which one of
you is to cross my threshold,
Let us all in and you will
figure it out in the end.
"No" I shouted I will never-
I will dismiss the one in
front he is much too "Clever".
 
Now there are four. Who shall I leave
to come through my door.
The next one began to explain,
every reason he should entrance gain,
a very convincing argument, I exclaimed,
"Go away you are nothing but" Rhetoric";
Everyone knows that the truth is Plain.
 
Now standing there in
front of my door left three,
The next one to speak
was beautiful, and very sexy...
"let me in, and I will prove I am truth.
You knew my mother her name was Ruth".
 
No! -You cannot lure me with sex
I read the story of your mother
and interpreted well.
If you do not leave my
door I will surely get vexed.
 
Now that I sent all but two away,
It was easier to tell ,
Who was left to welcome in..
Which of these two should enter my abode?
I had to ponder as to What truth really meant.
Was it something to be applied like a first aid kit.?
 
Is it true, that the truth is
sometimes ugly, and always plain?
Will the truth set you free after the pain.  
Hmm...
I pondered some more and let them both in.
 
One was life and one was death-
One was yen and one was yang.  
Truth number one started to speak, He said:
"No" The truth is not always in plain sight
Sometimes you have to search for it !
 
And:"Yes", The truth
can be ugly at times,
but you were right;
Real truth never wears a disguise. 
Some truth is Imagined and
real truth's are universal
 
Depends on the mindset of the
thinker. What he perceives to be real-
has had many rehearsals;
As his thoughts have been trained -
as to what he see's, knows and feels.
 
The truth is not convoluted,
nor contrived,and 
you will always KNOW
more than you think you do;
When the truth arrives.
 
When you enjoy the lies, 
and the rhetoric,
It's because the lies 
you believe, benefit you, 
Though PREJUDICE eyes
can barely RECOGNIZE
the TRUTH again ever.

And so you will remain 
as a BIAS SLAVE,
To the self seeking lies forever.
 
We are truth,they lamented-
We are the wide and the narrow 
THE good,THE bad,
The HAPPY, The SAD-
LIFE AND THE DEATH.
THE YEN AND THE YANG.
 
WE DO NOT CHANGE- ACCORDING TO
WHAT YOU BELIEVE-WE ARE A CONSTANT- 
AND WE ARE also CHANGE.
 
There was a knock on my door--
Someone had come,
disguised as one of truth's
predictions. 
Somehow he has come
to blame the innocent victims.
 
I prayed for my secret 
eye to be opened,
and my judgement 
to be discerning.

Because the truth, 
as it seems, I am learning.
Is subject to Interpretation.
 
And before "Truth" 
left my home, I was told.  
Man cannot reason out, that
which he does not understand-

If he thinks he understands the proof
but calls upon no spirit to discern -
He alone, is unable to interpret the truth

Copyright © Vicki Acquah | Year Posted 2014


Long Poems