holy poem, after the death of god

featured in the poetry forum March 22, 2024  :: 1 comment

snow all afternoon but
nothing is made beautiful

no one is considered holy

at some point
the last city is built
and then there is only slow decay

sons are shot and
daughters raped and all of
the missing are given names

and some of them come home
while others are martyred
and there is always the threat of
another religion

of the crippled
leading the blind and
of a war that everyone can
believe in

a way to kill only the
truly deserving

and how much of your life are
you willing to waste
making these decisions?

– John Sweet

editors note:

No more pissant prophets leading impotent attacks. A waste indeed! – mh clay

Before

featured in the poetry forum March 20, 2024  :: 0 comments

violence is shadows others expect
peeling off your dark layers, black at flowering time
the fear of black

bone black

paradise rained hard, and
we might have lived and died without knowing
and longing up

toward the stars

you have built in me an anger that scratches
like a prickly branch every minute of my day
celestial fury

reddens the sky

I put no faith in the God you try to force upon me
life is simple you said, find where the sky meets the sea
and blow me salty kisses

the sea is one long sigh

I let myself sink for a time in the cool gray
It seems so insane now. Finally, it feels unclear
In my mouth, with your breath

It goes and goes

– Barbara Hughes

editors note:

Break away from before, move forward a little more. – mh clay

Whitman Alone

featured in the poetry forum March 15, 2024  :: 0 comments

Imagine: there he is—
walking, one hand holding
the other, a solitary
late afternoon stroll,
crossing and re-crossing
the streets, swaying down
to the river, humming
an aria as the ferry lifts
him over the water
to the city of his poem
and back again, conferring
with the conductor, the smell
of fish and salt and sweat
from the workers who rush
home as the six bells warn:
the dark is here, go
warm yourselves, not one
knowing or caring to know
the tall hefty bearded son
with the cocked-back hat
and the hysterical eyes
who stumbles along walkways
and mumbles to himself,
laughing his fool head off.
Watch him a while,
around and round the wharf,
looking at sailors, pissing
against the side of buildings—
it almost justifies this moment
as the dark comes on
and the neighborhood shuts
its windows to the chill
and wind in bare branches,
crows gawking crazily
and he out there
looking up at the stars
and scratching his chin—
it makes sense, imagine—
the whole of us wait
in the balance.

– Philip Terman

editors note:

We await his words along with him. – mh clay

OPEN PRISON

featured in the poetry forum March 12, 2024  :: 0 comments

Beyond this low hedge and that high fence
We may not venture –
Although it is very puzzling,
For out there it seems
The air is the same as in here.

This hermit’s retreat
Has all the comforts to soften
Solitude, to stave off sickness:
Reclining soft chairs,
Any music we desire on tap,
A myriad of tv channels too.

Food and drink are regularly placed
Outside the door. A knock, a ring,
And then a van departs
Driven by some brave stranger
Who breathes that forbidden air.

A release date has been set
But plans cannot be made.
Could it be another false promise,
Like the last one, when we were
Tossed back in, like fearful rats
Led by a mercenary flute player?

– David Allard

editors note:

Any time in lock down is hard time. – mh clay

Patient

featured in the poetry forum March 10, 2024  :: 0 comments

I am patient but I am not a camel
I am patient but I am not a mule
I am patient but I am not a working horse
I am patient but I am, sadly, human
I can only be subjugated for so long
Even stones shatter by rain
Even earth quakes
Even livestock dies
Even doormats accumulate dust
Accommodating your footsteps
I am patient but I am not your whore
I am patient but I am not your slave
I am patient but I have agency
I am patient but I no longer have time

– Dana Al Rashid

editors note:

When waiting is worn… – mh clay

Meaning in the Mystery

featured in the poetry forum March 7, 2024  :: 0 comments

Should I lean on you less
and let your journey continue
uninterrupted?
Always bothering you with the
inconsequential stuff seems selfish.
Especially when you are now free
and unencumbered living
on a higher level.
The perfect picture of luminescence.
Still, I need your connection.
Hoping to feel your energy run
through me like a thunderbolt.
Awakening me from this
solemn slumber.

– Robert Pegel

editors note:

A message for the mirror or the man in the sky? – mh clay

Keeping Score

featured in the poetry forum March 5, 2024  :: 0 comments

Did we finally
acquiesce

the end of
human war?

If so, please
say who won.

Who takes
win while

we live less
and less,

the earth a
deflated ball,

all go home
sad, or not at all.

– Chad Parenteau

editors note:

In this scenario, even the winners are losers. – mh clay

in caverns where shadows mate

featured in the poetry forum March 4, 2024  :: 0 comments

the rocks have split hoping to
slow time with their crumble
and their coral on the beach
is the first mountain to taste snow
is the pull of the air that never
moves is the gale that is never felt
is a rope of gelatinous baskets that is
fully electric is a bloodless
annoyance quick as a nose bubble
is a billiard ball perverse as
boredom is a genome unreplicated
is an innocent fault for no one’s destruction
is a wish for nothing libidinous is the splay
of a horse’s tail is a sad sensation
of peace is an overnight vantage
of morning is a promise that viruses
will surely take over so that
we can all finally be left alone.

– Livio Farallo

editors note:

Is that what it is? Oh, my! – mh clay

LATE NIGHT

featured in the poetry forum February 28, 2024  :: 0 comments

late night never quite fits right
like a lop-sided lampshade
we wish to adjust
but just can’t do it—
some nights are strange radio shows—
late night smells like vinegar
sounds like muffles
dancing till all hours soils the next day—
walking streets until
the virtual rooster
makes us disappear
moon into sun
gray into gold

– Ray Greenblatt

editors note:

Actions of the night before determine our demeanor on the day after; pinched or perfect, it depends, doesn’t it? – mh clay