(no subject)

2017-Jul-01, Saturday 12:29
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Poetry folks who are Seanan McGuire fans, you want to go pledge $5/mo to her Patreon. The first poem's up and it's stellar and I already want to fanfic it.

I mean, you may not have the able-and-willing to go pledge $5/mo to McGuire's Patreon. But I'm pretty sure you want to. :-D
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Fun fact of the day! The line They tried to bury us; they didn't know we were seeds that I think probably we've all heard phrased basically so and attributed as a Mexican proverb?

It's a misquote or else a different English translation of a queer Greek poet writing in the 1970s, name of Dinos Christianopoulos.

What didn't you do to bury me? But you forgot that I was a seed. Dinos Christianopoulos

(no subject)

2017-Apr-09, Sunday 17:32
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Okay you all need to go read "Clearing" by Martha Postlethwaite, posted over [personal profile] musesfool way. It's particularly resonating with me as an activist and multimedia artist right now.

(no subject)

2017-Feb-22, Wednesday 09:51
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Seen on Daily Compass:

The Church says: the body is a sin.
Science says: the body is a machine.
Advertising says: The body is a business.
The Body says: I am a fiesta.

—Eduardo Galeano

(no subject)

2017-Feb-02, Thursday 16:41
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
I don't suppose Cheeto reads poetry. Having been reminded of John Donne, I wish Cheeto and all his ilk to internalize it.

John Donne
Meditation 17
Devotions upon Emergent Occasions

"No man is an iland, intire of it selfe; every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Mannor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee...."
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.

"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

(no subject)

2017-Jan-26, Thursday 11:04
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
"The Might of the Mountain's Crown", a Rannaicheacht Mhor Gairit by [personal profile] ysabetwordsmith. Complex Celtic poetic form, addressing Cadair Idris legends. GLEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

(no subject)

2016-Nov-23, Wednesday 00:27
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
"Pestel Street"
Tomas Venclova, tr. Diana Senechal
from Winter Dialogue
...a low dishonest decade...

W.H. Auden
Summer submerges the city,
The glass reflects only dust,
Warm wine trickles
Into the hazy chalice.
The air is flavored with fading
Cupola gold in the sun.
Algae, like Cyrillic characters,
Blacken the narrow canal.

What do you seek here, poet? )




So, uh. My Yuleswap books are here. As I told my sender, I opened the one volume to a random page—happens it was the second page of "Pestel Street"—and fell in love. I'm not sure I have enough brain to dig deeper into Venclova tonight, or begin on the other volume (which is by Eugeniusz Tkaczyszyn-Dycki, tr. Bill Johnston), but I am gonna roll around happily in "Pestel Street" for a while. What do you seek here, poet? To change time into a stanza, to concentrate fear into meaning. (Okay, the verse I fell in love with is Lethe and the airless universe, but whatever.)

(no subject)

2016-Nov-18, Friday 11:46
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Two poems by PSVL, possibly relevant to people's interests.

(no subject)

2016-Nov-02, Wednesday 14:56
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
A little Learning is a dang'rous Thing;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian Spring:
There shallow Draughts intoxicate the Brain,
And drinking largely sobers us again.
Fir'd at first Sight with what the Muse imparts,
In fearless Youth we tempt the Heights of Arts,
While from the bounded Level of our Mind,
Short Views we take, nor see the lengths behind,
But more advanc'd, behold with strange Surprize
New, distant Scenes of endless Science rise!
So pleas'd at first, the towring Alps we try,
Mount o'er the Vales, and seem to tread the Sky;
Th' Eternal Snows appear already past,
And the first Clouds and Mountains seem the last:
But those attain'd, we tremble to survey
The growing Labours of the lengthen'd Way,
Th' increasing Prospect tires our wandering Eyes,
Hills peep o'er Hills, and Alps on Alps arise!
—from Alexander Pope, "An Essay on Criticism"

(no subject)

2016-Apr-18, Monday 17:32
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Feminist poem.

It's one of those "read from the top down, then from the bottom up" poems. Someday I will write one that works as intended.
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Hidden in a forest of questions
unwilling to embrace blackthorn trees
to yield
to go into madness gracefully
or alone
the woman is no longer young
she has come to hate slowly
her skin of transparent metal
the sinuous exposure without reprieve
her eyes of clay
heavy with the fruit of prophetic dreaming.

In the hungers of silence [...] )
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
She wished of him a lover's kiss and
nights of coupled twining.
They laced themselves
between the trees
and to the water's edge.

Reminding her
the cratered moon lay light-years away,
he spoke of Greece, the Parthenon
and Cleopatra's barge.

She splayed her foot
up to her shin
within the ocean brine.

He quoted Pope and Bernard Shaw
and Catcher in the Rye.

Her sandal lost,
she dried her toe
and then she mopped her brow.

Dry-eyed
she walked into her room
and frankly told her mother,
"Of all he said, I understood
he said he loved another."
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Death is a dialogue between
The spirit and the dust.
"Dissolve," says Death. The Spirit, "Sir,
I have another trust."

Death doubts it, argues from the ground.
The Spirit turns away,
Just laying off, for evidence,
An overcoat of clay.


I see thee clearer for the Grave
That took thy face between
No Mirror could illumine thee
Like that impassive stone —

I know thee better for the Act
That made thee first unknown
The stature of the empty nest
Attests the Bird that's gone.


Because I could not stop for Death—
He kindly stopped for me—
The Carriage held but just Ourselves—
And Immortality.

We slowly drove—He knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor and my leisure too,
For His Civility—

We passed the School, where Children strove
At recess—in the ring—
We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain—
We passed the Setting Sun—

Or rather—He passed Us—
The Dews drew quivering and chill—
For only Gossamer, my Gown—
My Tippet—only Tulle—

We paused before a House that seemed
A Swelling of the Ground—
The Roof was scarcely visible—
The Cornice—in the Ground—

Since then—'tis centuries— and yet
Feels shorter than the Day
I first surmised the Horses' Heads
Were toward Eternity—
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
Dust if you must, but wouldn’t it be better
To paint a picture or write a letter,
Bake a cake or plant a seed,
Ponder the difference between want and need?

Dust if you must, but there is not much time
With rivers to swim and mountains to climb,
Music to hear and books to read,
Friends to cherish and life to lead.

Dust if you must, but the world’s out there,
With the sun in your eyes, the wind in your hair,
A flutter of snow, a shower of rain.
This day will not come round again.

Dust if you must, but bear in mind,
Old age will come and it’s not kind.
And when you go—and go you must—
You, yourself, will make more dust.
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
"Dust If You Must"
attributed to Rose Milligan by at least one source, Author Unknown or Attribution Removed by others

Dust if you must, but wouldn't it be better
To paint a picture, or write a letter,
Bake a cake, or plant a seed;
Ponder the difference between want and need?

Dust if you must, but there's not much time,
With rivers to swim, and mountains to climb;
Music to hear, and books to read;
Friends to cherish, and life to lead.

Dust if you must, but the world's out there
With the sun in your eyes, and the wind in your hair;
A flutter of snow, a shower of rain,
This day will not come around again.

Dust if you must, but bear in mind,
Old age will come and it's not kind.
And when you go (and go you must)
You, yourself, will make more dust.
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
"The Negro Speaks of Rivers"
Langston Hughes

I've known rivers:
I've known rivers ancient as the world and older than the flow of human blood in human veins.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

I bathed in the Euphrates when dawns were young.
I built my hut near the Congo and it lulled me to sleep.
I looked upon the Nile and raised the pyramids above it.
I heard the singing of the Mississippi when Abe Lincoln went down to New Orleans, and I've seen its muddy bosom turn all golden in the sunset.

I've known rivers:
Ancient, dusky rivers.

My soul has grown deep like the rivers.

(no subject)

2015-Mar-25, Wednesday 18:55
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
A poetry I wish to share.

The author, Naziyah Mahmood, is interviewed over here, mostly not about poetry, but damn those are some pretty pictures. (She likes swords.) Interview is a little inspiration-porny, though.

(no subject)

2015-Jan-24, Saturday 20:30
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
"Shakespeare's 116th Sonnet in Black English Translation", June Jordan

Don't let me mess up partner happiness
because the trouble
start
An' I ain't got the heart
to deal!
That won't be real
(about love)
if I
(push come to shove)
just punk

Not hardly! Hey:
Love do not cooperate
with cop-out
provocations: No!

Storm come. Storm go
away
but love stay
steady
(if you ready or
you not!)
True love stay
steady
True love stay
hot!
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
THY various works, imperial queen, we see,
How bright their forms! how deck'd with pomp by thee!
Thy wond'rous acts in beauteous order stand,
And all attest how potent is thine hand.
From Helicon's refulgent heights attend,
Ye sacred choir, and my attempts befriend:
To tell her glories with a faithful tongue,
Ye blooming graces, triumph in my song.
Now here, now there, the roving Fancy flies,
Till some lov'd object strikes her wand'ring eyes,
Whose silken fetters all the senses bind,
And soft captivity involves the mind.
Imagination! who can sing thy force?
Or who describe the swiftness of thy course?
Soaring through air to find the bright abode,
Th' empyreal palace of the thund'ring God,
We on thy pinions can surpass the wind,
And leave the rolling universe behind:
From star to star the mental optics rove,
Measure the skies, and range the realms above.
There in one view we grasp the mighty whole,
Or with new worlds amaze th' unbounded soul.
Though Winter frowns to Fancy's raptur'd eyes
The fields may flourish, and gay scenes arise;
The frozen deeps may break their iron bands,
And bid their waters murmur o'er the sands.
Fair Flora may resume her fragrant reign,
And with her flow'ry riches deck the plain;
Sylvanus may diffuse his honours round,
And all the forest may with leaves be crown'd:
Show'rs may descend, and dews their gems disclose,
And nectar sparkle on the blooming rose.
Such is thy pow'r, nor are thine orders vain,
O thou the leader of the mental train:
In full perfection all thy works are wrought,
And thine the sceptre o'er the realms of thought.
Before thy throne the subject-passions bow,
Of subject-passions sov'reign ruler thou;
At thy command joy rushes on the heart,
And through the glowing veins the spirits dart.
Fancy might now her silken pinions try
To rise from earth, and sweep th' expanse on high:
From Tithon's bed now might Aurora rise,
Her cheeks all glowing with celestial dies,
While a pure stream of light o'erflows the skies.
The monarch of the day I might behold,
And all the mountains tipt with radiant gold,
But I reluctant leave the pleasing views,
Which Fancy dresses to delight the Muse;
Winter austere forbids me to aspire,
And northern tempests damp the rising fire;
They chill the tides of Fancy's flowing sea,
Cease then, my song, cease the unequal lay.
alexseanchai: stack of books in black and white (books 4)
The free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wings
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his wings are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with fearful trill
of the things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze
and the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn
and he names the sky his own.

But a caged bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.



I'm not posting a poem a day. Probably. Be fun to try, though.
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
I take it you already know of tough and bough and cough and dough?
Some may stumble, but not you, on hiccough, thorough, slough, and through?
So now you are ready, perhaps, to learn of less familiar traps?
Beware of heard, a dreadful word, that looks like beard, but sounds like bird.
And dead, it's said like bed, not bead; for goodness' sake, don't call it deed!
Watch out for meat and great and threat. (They rhyme with suite and straight and debt.)
A moth is not a moth in mother, nor both in bother, broth in brother.
And here is not a match for there, nor dear and fear, for bear and pear.
And then there's dose and rose and lose—just look them up—and goose and choose
And cork and work and card and ward and font and front and word and sword
And do and go, then thwart and cart, come, come! I've hardly made a start.
A dreadful language? Why man alive! I've learned to talk it when I was five.
And yet to write it, the more I tried, I hadn't learned it at fifty-five.
—Author Unknown
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
I'm not the first or last
to stand on a hillock,
watching the man she married
prove to the world
he's a total, utter, absolute, Grade A pillock.



(I'm also stuck on Duffy's "Frau Freud". I think I should not try to brain when sick.)

poem rec

2014-Jan-20, Monday 17:04
alexseanchai: Blue and purple lightning (Default)
[personal profile] el_staplador's Where It Started is well worth a read.

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let me hear your voice tonight

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