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  1. TopTop #4021
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    How It Seems To Me

    In the vast abyss before time, self
    is not, and soul commingles
    with mist, and rock, and light. In time,
    soul brings the misty self to be.
    Then slow time hardens self to stone
    while ever lightening the soul,
    till soul can loose its hold of self
    and both are free and can return
    to vastness and dissolve in light,
    the long light after time.

    - Ursula K. Le Guin
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  2. TopTop #4022
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Dear California, I Write to You from Grand Island, New York

    It is the light in the sky
    that reminds me of you,
    the summer blue flowing by.
    But the clouds here remind me
    more of Paris, the calmness of them
    as though inside a painting.
    The goldfinches on the feeders
    no longer flee from me, the cardinals
    tell me where I live. California,
    am I in denial? Will I miss you
    when the white snow falls and falls
    on the quiet island world?
    If I returned to you, would I miss
    the train whistle across the river,
    the 10 p.m. fireworks from the Falls,
    the Niagara that is San Francisco Bay
    green one day, Monterey blue the next,
    a rush of ice in early spring that I follow
    until it crashes, gorgeously, into the gorge
    to bump along its sonorous path
    until it melts back to its source?


    - Katherine Hastings
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  3. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  4. TopTop #4023
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Penitent

    I had a little Sorrow,
    Born of a little Sin,
    I found a room all damp with gloom
    And shut us all within;
    And, “Little Sorrow, weep," said I,
    “And, Little Sin, pray God to die,
    And I upon the floor will lie
    And think how bad I’ve been!”

    Alas for pious planning—
    It mattered not a whit!
    As far as gloom went in that room,
    The lamp might have been lit!
    My Little Sorrow would not weep,
    My little Sin would go to sleep—
    To save my soul I could not keep
    My graceless mind on it!

    So up I got in anger,
    And took a book I had,
    And put a ribbon on my hair
    To please a passing lad,
    And, “One thing there’s no getting by—
    I’ve been a wicked girl," said I;
    “But if I can’t be sorry, why,
    I might as well be glad!”

    - Edna St. Vincent Millay
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  5. TopTop #4024
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Without Winter

    Without winter
    how would we know spring?
    How would we know the delight
    of the first bud of the rose,
    or the sighting of a robin
    at the break of day?

    How would we know
    that we climbed out of the drudge
    that winter holds?
    That we have been transformed
    from our underworld dive?

    Without winter in our soul
    how would we feel renewed by love,
    by the awakening of sleepy cells
    that long ago remained unchanged?

    How would we know if we
    passed through hell
    to come out healed?
    How would we know
    what healing is?

    Without the depths of our journey
    How would we know we arrived?

    Without winter
    how would we remember
    that not a spring comes by
    without its promise of renewal,
    its soft colors,
    enchanting breeze,
    its welcoming silence, setting the stage
    for that first sign of relief?

    - Sherrie Lovler
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  6. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  7. TopTop #4025
    Dre
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Hello, dear Larry -

    I just wished to express a special "thank you" for all the great poetry you source & send out to us. I love the way poetry offers us different lenses to view life through – it's become essential to me in that way.

    I'm saddened today in hearing Mary Oliver has died. Another bright light has left us...but we will always have her illuminating work.

    Would you happen to have a favorite poem of hers you might share in this forum?

    Again, thanks for all the interesting & thought-provoking work you offer us. It really helps sustain humanity's beautiful side in our sometimes bleak day-to-day existence.

    From my heart –

    dre
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  9. TopTop #4026
    eddierosenthal's Avatar
    eddierosenthal
    Supporting Member

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    here is one good one. there are many.

    Who made the world?
    Who made the swan, and the black bear?
    Who made the grasshopper?
    This grasshopper, I mean-
    the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
    the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
    who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
    who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
    Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
    Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
    I don't know exactly what a prayer is.
    I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
    into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
    how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
    which is what I have been doing all day.
    Tell me, what else should I have done?
    Doesn't everything die at last, and too soon?
    Tell me, what is it you plan to do
    with your one wild and precious life?
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  10. Gratitude expressed by 7 members:

  11. TopTop #4027
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Where Does the Dance Begin, Where Does It End?


    Don't call this world adorable, or useful, that's not it.
    It's frisky, and a theater for more than fair winds.
    The eyelash of lightning is neither good nor evil.
    The struck tree burns like a pillar of gold.
    But the blue rain sinks, straight to the white
    feet of the trees
    whose mouths open.
    Doesn't the wind, turning in circles, invent the dance?
    Haven't the flowers moved, slowly, across Asia, then Europe,
    until at last, now, they shine
    in your own yard?
    Don't call this world an explanation, or even an education.
    When the Sufi poet whirled, was he looking
    outward, to the mountains so solidly there
    in a white-capped ring, or was he looking
    to the center of everything: the seed, the egg, the idea
    that was also there,
    beautiful as a thumb
    curved and touching the finger, tenderly,
    little love-ring,
    as he whirled,
    oh jug of breath,
    in the garden of dust?

    - Mary Oliver

    (September 10, 1935 - January 17, 2019
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  12. Gratitude expressed by 7 members:

  13. TopTop #4028
    Ronaldo's Avatar
    Ronaldo
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    “The heart’s spiritual awakening is the true work of our lives.”
    —Mary Oliver on Emerson

    One of her poems is attached

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  15. TopTop #4029
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    What I Have Learned So Far

    Meditation is old and honorable, so why should I
    not sit, every morning of my life, on the hillside,
    looking into the shining world? Because, properly
    attended to, delight, as well as havoc, is suggestion.
    Can one be passionate about the just, the
    ideal, the sublime, and the holy, and yet commit
    to no labor in its cause? I don't think so.

    All summations have a beginning, all effect has a
    story, all kindness begins with the sown seed.
    Thought buds toward radiance. The gospel of
    light is the crossroads of -- indolence, or action.

    Be ignited, or be gone.

    - Mary Oliver
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  17. TopTop #4030
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Dear Ms. Oliver

    I plan to squander the rest
    of my wild and precious life
    among the idle
    who appreciate simple things:
    hot showers
    sudden smiles
    real strawberry ice cream
    deluge and drought
    broken bay laurel leaves
    cool sheets
    dark nights.

    And before I leave, please
    give me another noisy river
    a bent tree
    a sparrow’s flash
    and an overflight of clouds
    before the moon.

    Give me a few clear images
    to save for a rainy day
    or the last long night’s dream.

    - Karl Frederick

    “What do you plan to do
    with your one wild and precious life?”
    The Summer Day – Mary Oliver
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  19. TopTop #4031
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Call of the Open

    Which yet joined not scent to hue,
    Crown the pale year weak and new;
    When the night is left behind
    In the deep east, dun and blind,
    And the blue noon is over us,
    And the multitudinous
    Billows murmur at our feet,
    Where the earth and ocean meet,
    And all things seem only one
    In the universal sun.

    - Percy Bysshe Shelley
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  20. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  21. TopTop #4032
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    All will come again into its strength:
    the fields undivided, the waters undammed,
    the trees towering and the walls built low.
    And in the valleys, people as strong and varied as the land.

    And no churches where God
    is imprisoned and lamented
    like a trapped and wounded animal.
    The houses welcoming all who knock
    and a sense of boundless offering
    in all relations, and in you and me.

    No yearning for an afterlife, no looking beyond,
    no belittling of death,
    but only longing for what belongs to us
    and serving earth, lest we remain unused.

    - Ranier Maria Rilke
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  22. Gratitude expressed by 7 members:

  23. TopTop #4033
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Of Love and Other Disasters

    The punch-press operator from Flint
    met the assembler from West Virginia
    in a bar near the stadium. Neither
    had anything in mind, so they conversed
    about the upcoming baseball season
    about which neither cared. We could
    be a couple, he thought, but she was
    all wrong, way too skinny. For years
    he’d had an image of the way a woman
    should look, and it wasn’t her, it wasn’t
    anyone he’d ever known, certainly not
    his ex-wife, who’d moved back south
    to live with her high-school sweetheart.
    About killed him. I don’t need that shit,
    he almost said aloud, and then realized
    she’d been talking to someone, maybe
    to him, about how she couldn’t get
    her hands right, how the grease ate
    so deeply into her skin it became
    a part of her, and she put her hand,
    palm up, on the bar and pointed
    with her cigarette at the deep lines
    the work had carved. “The life line,”
    he said, “which one is that?” “None,”
    she said, and he noticed that her eyes
    were hazel flecked with tiny spots
    of gold, and then—embarrassed—looked
    back at her hand, which seemed tiny
    and delicate, the fingers yellowed
    with calluses but slender and fine.
    She took a paper napkin off the bar,
    Spit on it and told him to hold still
    while she carefully lifted his glasses
    up on his forehead, leaving him half
    blind, and wiped something off
    above his left cheekbone. “There,”
    she said, lowering his glasses, “I
    got it,” and even with his glasses on
    what she showed him was nothing
    he could see. He thought, better
    get out of here before it’s too late, but
    knew too late was what he wanted.

    - Philip Levine
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  24. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  25. TopTop #4034
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Listening Fields

    In the end is the Word
    a weaving of all the world’s tongues
    folds soft as night wind, hard as jail cells
    silent as sun sipping sea mist, loud as fighter jets

    Ever becoming, ever ending
    and the end that is Now, that is our doing and our undoing
    is a biblical flood of torn multitudes
    crowding de-spirited shores
    wave upon wave, wounded, mourning,
    fleeing what began
    when Word left the breath
    for the ledger, the royalized lie

    Even as Now implodes, our stories ripen
    in an over-bright unfolding
    of Word’s fall from grace,
    endgames defiling Holy writ
    end flames of creed and greed
    ripping primal energies asunder
    engulfing the armed and the innocent

    Spirit fruit seeded in song,
    watered in courage beyond the lash on naked flesh
    the chains of disdain, the rabid, feral tortures
    the battlefields, the borders, the gunner pathologies
    the creeping, seeping poisons

    Spirit fruit
    pressed into wine on the page
    Libations for the holy ones
    for children lean and staring through refugee fences
    or plump and mirthless, staring at flickering screens
    Libations for all the lined faces, the colonized eyes,
    selves betraying self and other

    even as Other flows on
    quickening grass, rippling feathers and fur,
    curving horns and thorns, pulsing into petals,
    into skin and pollen and papery wings
    the One and the All breathing each to each

    As it was in the Beginning
    when we entered as echoes
    melodies of the Milky Way
    star chords becoming the listening fields
    finding Word in the listening fields

    - Cynthia Poten
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  27. TopTop #4035
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Nothing Alive at Yesterday’s Altar

    Why kneel
    in the ashes of yesterday’s altar
    when each day rises unfathomable
    as a new mystery

    and I must look
    with fresh eyes or see nothing
    but the shadows
    of what has been . . .

    chasing Grace or Peace
    Equanimity or Insight
    that no longer burns
    with Presence.

    May I find the courage
    each day
    to make a fresh altar
    of my life

    - Kay Crista
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  28. Gratitude expressed by 6 members:

  29. TopTop #4036
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Elegy in Joy

    We tell beginnings: for the flesh and the answer,
    or the look, the lake in the eye that knows,
    for the despair that flows down in widest rivers,
    cloud of home; and also the green tree of grace,
    all in the leaf, in the love that gives us ourselves.

    The word of nourishment passes through the women,
    soldiers and orchards rooted in constellations,
    white towers, eyes of children:
    saying in time of war What shall we feed?
    I cannot say the end.

    Nourish beginnings, let us nourish beginnings.
    Not all things are blest, but the
    seeds of all things are blest.
    The blessing is in the seed.

    This moment, this seed, this wave of the sea, this look, this instant of love.
    Years over wars and an imagining of peace. Or the expiation journey
    toward peace which is many wishes flaming together,
    fierce pure life, the many-living home.
    Love that gives us ourselves, in the world known to all
    new techniques for the healing of the wound,
    and the unknown world. One life, or the faring stars.

    - Muriel Rukeyser
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  30. TopTop #4037
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    To my granddaughters who visited the Holocaust
    Museum on the day of the burial of Yitzhak Rabin

    Now you know the worst
    we humans have to know
    about ourselves, and I am sorry,

    for I know that you will be afraid.
    To those of our bodies given
    without pity to be burned, I know

    there is no answer
    but loving one another,
    even our enemies, and this is hard.

    But remember:
    when a man of war becomes a man of peace,
    he gives a light, divine

    though it is also human.
    When a man of peace is killed
    by a man of war, he gives a light.

    You do not have to walk in darkness.
    If you will have the courage for love,
    you may walk in light. It will be

    the light of those who have suffered
    for peace. It will be
    your light.

    - Wendell Berry
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  31. Gratitude expressed by 7 members:

  32. TopTop #4038
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Cheeky AI
    That artificial intelligence
    got me down to a T-shirt.
    Chasing me from shopping site to
    Newsy site to some perceived insight.
    Now they got me pegged for
    Sporti Active Cheeky Boyshort Swim Bottom.
    Oh Lordy, next a silk silver swanky
    Swath of side string silhouetted
    Slit suit with a hussy hanky-panky
    Upright Invite.

    - Ernie Carpenter
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  33. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  34. TopTop #4039
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Words From Kafka

    Lady’s eyes opened to her shamed belief
    she’d let me down she who very much the lady
    she who for the first time shat the carpet
    she who appeared to us to be pleading for release
    she who we were pretty certain knew she was dying
    she with no conceivable notion of what it all meant
    she was love trust companion sad it was over
    no notion of her life’s meaning and certainly no Kafka

    All those shells those crustacean bodies swept up
    on the shores of Bodega Bay they had gone along
    with the flow without knowledge of any reason
    they were done and fulfilled with their endings
    And of beginnings does any wooly caterpillar
    reflect: know for a mere instant of its impending
    transition of metamorphosis? No Kafka here either
    Nor can any Blake or Rilke angel fully fathom a reason

    Having spent the greater portion of my reasoning age
    dwelling upon the meaning of life and the fear of death
    I discovered my self to be pleasantly serene as I lay dying
    as my lungs filled with emboli and as my brain began to bleed
    and again when that same brain went into electrical seizure
    and even that sense of actually entering the realm of death
    no white light no angel no fear of a heaven or a hell
    merely the sense that all would be well that I might die

    Or that if I lived I would follow advice and continue to age
    gracefully though being anything but perfect I would stray
    from the serenity known during those dying moments
    The trick lies deep within the words of the aforementioned
    Franz Kafka: The meaning of life is that it ends
    those of Kurt Vonnegut: …and so it goes
    also Jesus Christ: It is consummated
    Amen

    - Ed Coletti
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  35. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  36. TopTop #4040
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    A Dialogue Of Self And Soul

    {My Soul} I summon to the winding ancient stair;
    Set all your mind upon the steep ascent,
    Upon the broken, crumbling battlement,
    Upon the breathless starlit air,
    "Upon the star that marks the hidden pole;
    Fix every wandering thought upon
    That quarter where all thought is done:
    Who can distinguish darkness from the soul

    {My Self}. The consecrates blade upon my knees
    Is Sato's ancient blade, still as it was,
    Still razor-keen, still like a looking-glass
    Unspotted by the centuries;
    That flowering, silken, old embroidery, torn
    >From some court-lady's dress and round
    The wooden scabbard bound and wound
    Can, tattered, still protect, faded adorn

    {My Soul.} Why should the imagination of a man
    Long past his prime remember things that are
    Emblematical of love and war?
    Think of ancestral night that can,
    If but imagination scorn the earth
    And interllect is wandering
    To this and that and t'other thing,
    Deliver from the crime of death and birth.

    {My self.} Montashigi, third of his family, fashioned it
    Five hundred years ago, about it lie
    Flowers from I know not what embroidery --
    Heart's purple -- and all these I set
    For emblems of the day against the tower
    Emblematical of the night,
    And claim as by a soldier's right
    A charter to commit the crime once more.

    {My Soul.} Such fullness in that quarter overflows
    And falls into the basin of the mind
    That man is stricken deaf and dumb and blind,
    For intellect no longer knows
    Is from the Ought, or knower from the Known --
    That is to say, ascends to Heaven;
    Only the dead can be forgiven;
    But when I think of that my tongue's a stone.

    {My Self.} A living man is blind and drinks his drop.
    What matter if the ditches are impure?
    What matter if I live it all once more?
    Endure that toil of growing up;
    The ignominy of boyhood; the distress
    Of boyhood changing into man;
    The unfinished man and his pain
    Brought face to face with his own clumsiness;
    The finished man among his enemies? --
    How in the name of Heaven can he escape
    That defiling and disfigured shape
    The mirror of malicious eyes
    Casts upon his eyes until at last
    He thinks that shape must be his shape?
    And what's the good of an escape
    If honour find him in the wintry blast?
    I am content to live it all again
    And yet again, if it be life to pitch
    Into the frog-spawn of a blind man's ditch,
    A blind man battering blind men;
    Or into that most fecund ditch of all,
    The folly that man does
    Or must suffer, if he woos
    A proud woman not kindred of his soul.
    I am content to follow to its source
    Every event in action or in thought;
    Measure the lot; forgive myself the lot!
    When such as I cast out remorse
    So great a sweetness flows into the breast
    We must laugh and we must sing,
    We are blest by everything,
    Everything we look upon is blest.

    - William Butler Yeats
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  37. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  38. TopTop #4041
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    A Man in His Life

    A man doesn't have time in his life
    to have time for everything.
    He doesn't have seasons enough to have
    a season for every purpose. Ecclesiastes
    Was wrong about that.

    A man needs to live and to hate at the same moment,
    to laugh and cry with the same eyes,
    with the same hands to throw stones and to gather them,
    to make love in war and war in love.
    And to hate and forgive and remember and forget,
    to arrange and confuse, to eat and to digest
    what history
    takes years and years to do.

    A man doesn't have time.
    When he loses he seeks, when he finds
    he forgets, when he forgets he loves, when he loves
    he begins to forget.

    And his soul is seasoned, his soul
    is very professional
    Only his body remains forever
    an amateur. It tries and it misses,
    gets muddled, doesn't learn a thing,
    drunk and blind in its pleasures
    and its pains.

    He will die as figs die in autumn,
    Shriveled and full of himself and sweet,
    the leaves growing dry on the ground,
    the bare branches pointing to the place
    where there's time for everything.

    - Yehuda Amichai
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  39. Gratitude expressed by 6 members:

  40. TopTop #4042
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Borders of Tomorrow

    It happens when grim and serious
    men answer all questions with a flag
    and dismiss talk of civil rights with
    scribble of a pen.

    It happens if the knees of democracy
    buckle and dark money decides
    who walks the long road home and
    who gets a chauffeured ride.

    It happens when the doors of freedom
    slam shut on desperate, broken hands
    and we lock away children who come
    from foreign, hungry lands.

    It happens when we ignore the signs
    that tell us, not how or when, but enough
    for us to know, we lose the country when
    we, the people, lose control.

    It happens when we let it happen.



    - Patrice Warrender
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  41. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  42. TopTop #4043
    pdfender's Avatar
    pdfender
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Stay strong and keep the faith.
    Change is coming and has already begun.
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  44. TopTop #4044
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The End and the Beginning


    After every war
    someone has to clean up.
    Things won’t
    straighten themselves up, after all.

    Someone has to push the rubble
    to the side of the road,
    so the corpse-filled wagons
    can pass.

    Someone has to get mired
    in scum and ashes,
    sofa springs,
    splintered glass,
    and bloody rags.

    Someone has to drag in a girder
    to prop up a wall.
    Someone has to glaze a window,
    rehang a door.

    Photogenic it’s not,
    and takes years.
    All the cameras have left
    for another war.

    We’ll need the bridges back,
    and new railway stations.
    Sleeves will go ragged
    from rolling them up.

    Someone, broom in hand,
    still recalls the way it was.
    Someone else listens
    and nods with unsevered head.
    But already there are those nearby
    starting to mill about
    who will find it dull.

    From out of the bushes
    sometimes someone still unearths
    rusted-out arguments
    and carries them to the garbage pile.

    Those who knew
    what was going on here
    must make way for
    those who know little.
    And less than little.
    And finally as little as nothing.

    In the grass that has overgrown
    causes and effects,
    someone must be stretched out
    blade of grass in his mouth
    gazing at the clouds.

    - Wislawa Szymborska
    (translated by Joanna Trzeciak)
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  45. Gratitude expressed by 6 members:

  46. TopTop #4045
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Leash

    After the birthing of bombs of forks and fear,
    the frantic automatic weapons unleashed,
    the spray of bullets into a crowd holding hands,
    that brute sky opening in a slate metal maw
    that swallows only the unsayable in each of us, what’s
    left? Even the hidden nowhere river is poisoned
    orange and acidic by a coal mine. How can
    you not fear humanity, want to lick the creek
    bottom dry to suck the deadly water up into
    your own lungs, like venom? Reader, I want to
    say, Don’t die. Even when silvery fish after fish
    comes back belly up, and the country plummets
    into a crepitating crater of hatred, isn’t there still
    something singing? The truth is: I don’t know.
    But sometimes, I swear I hear it, the wound closing
    like a rusted-over garage door, and I can still move
    my living limbs into the world without too much
    pain, can still marvel at how the dog runs straight
    toward the pickup trucks break-necking down
    the road, because she thinks she loves them,
    because she’s sure, without a doubt, that the loud
    roaring things will love her back, her soft small self
    alive with desire to share her goddamn enthusiasm,
    until I yank the leash back to save her because
    I want her to survive forever. Don’t die, I say,
    and we decide to walk for a bit longer, starlings
    high and fevered above us, winter coming to lay
    her cold corpse down upon this little plot of earth.
    Perhaps, we are always hurtling our body towards
    the thing that will obliterate us, begging for love
    from the speeding passage of time, and so maybe
    like the dog obedient at my heels, we can walk together
    peacefully, at least until the next truck comes.

    - Ada Limón
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  47. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  48. TopTop #4046
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Apprenticed to Justice

    The weight of ashes
    from burned-out camps.
    Lodges smoulder in fire,
    animal hides wither
    their mythic images shrinking
    pulling in on themselves,
    all incinerated
    fragments
    of breath bone and basket
    rest heavy
    sink deep
    like wintering frogs.
    And no dustbowl wind
    can lift
    this history
    of loss.

    Now fertilized by generations—
    ashes upon ashes,
    this old earth erupts.
    Medicine voices rise like mists
    white buffalo memories
    teeth marks on birch bark
    forgotten forms
    tremble into wholeness.

    And the grey weathered stumps,
    trees and treaties
    cut down
    trampled for wealth.
    Flat Potlatch plateaus
    of ghost forests
    raked by bears
    soften rot inward
    until tiny arrows of green
    sprout
    rise erect
    rootfed
    from each crumbling center.

    Some will never laugh
    as easily.
    Will hide knives
    silver as fish in their boots,
    hoard names
    as if they could be stolen
    as easily as land,
    will paper their walls
    with maps and broken promises,
    scar their flesh
    with this badge
    heavy as ashes.

    And this is a poem
    for those
    apprenticed
    from birth.
    In the womb
    of your mother nation
    heartbeats
    sound like drums
    drums like thunder
    thunder like twelve thousand
    walking
    then ten thousand
    then eight
    walking away
    from stolen homes
    from burned out camps
    from relatives fallen
    as they walked
    then crawled
    then fell.

    This is the woodpecker sound
    of an old retreat.
    It becomes an echo.
    an accounting
    to be reconciled.
    This is the sound
    of trees falling in the woods
    when they are heard,
    of red nations falling
    when they are remembered.
    This is the sound
    we hear
    when fist meets flesh
    when bullets pop against chests
    when memories rattle hollow in stomachs.

    And we turn this sound
    over and over again
    until it becomes
    fertile ground
    from which we will build
    new nations
    upon the ashes of our ancestors.
    Until it becomes
    the rattle of a new revolution
    these fingers
    drumming on keys.

    - Kimberly Blaeser
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  49. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  50. TopTop #4047
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Choices
    for Drago Štambuk

    I go to the mountain side
    of the house to cut saplings,
    and clear a view to snow
    on the mountain. But when I look up,
    saw in hand, I see a nest clutched in
    the uppermost branches.
    I don’t cut that one.
    I don’t cut the others either.
    Suddenly, in every tree,
    an unseen nest
    where a mountain
    would be.


    - Tess Gallagher
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  51. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  52. TopTop #4048
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Scintilla, Star

    In the old place, there was no place
    that did not see me.
    Wherever I went mothers whispered
    about me like a Greek chorus:
    I heard that boy    ...    I heard that.
    I was just a boy. But it was
    true, what they said, that I liked
    other boys, that I had stolen Sarah’s,
    though he was four years older
    and they were very much in love.
    I made him break up with her
    in a Chili’s parking lot
    while I waited inside. I was
    fourteen. How embarrassing
    to have been fourteen, to have eaten
    at that Chili’s, often. That summer
    I had no taste for anything
    but him. Faintly of chlorine.
    When he left for college
    I had no one. Sarah’s friends
    stared me down at school.
    I found it was better,
    if I could not be no one,
    to be someone. Small, but
    particular. Specified, which was
    an apprenticeship for special.
    Cold, another word for cool.

    - Jameson Fitzpatrick
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  53. TopTop #4049
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Gift

    Time wants to show you a different country. It's the one
    that your life conceals, the one waiting outside
    when curtains are drawn, the one Grandmother hinted at
    in her crochet design, the one almost found
    over at the edge of the music, after the sermon.

    It's the way life is, and you have it, a few years given.
    You get killed now and then, violated
    in various ways. (And sometimes it's turn about.)
    You get tired of that. Long-suffering, you wait
    and pray, and maybe good things come - maybe
    the hurt slackens and you hardly feel it any more.
    You have a breath without pain. It is called happiness.

    It's a balance, the taking and passing along,
    the composting of where you've been and how people
    and weather treated you. It's a country where
    you already are, bringing where you have been.
    Time offers this gift in its millions of ways,
    turning the world, moving the air, calling,
    every morning, "Here, take it, it's yours."

    - William Stafford
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  54. Gratitude expressed by 8 members:

  55. TopTop #4050
    eddierosenthal's Avatar
    eddierosenthal
    Supporting Member

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    One of our American greatest poets, in clarity and unassuming humility to the world, but also feels like a transcendentalist. I was introduced to him thru the poem "traveling through the dark" by Kathleen Fraser in the in 1971. If you want to learn to write well, there is a good place to start by reading him.
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  56. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

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