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  1. TopTop #4141
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Shirt


    The back, the yoke, the yardage. Lapped seams,
    The nearly invisible stitches along the collar
    Turned in a sweatshop by Koreans or Malaysians


    Gossiping over tea and noodles on their break
    Or talking money or politics while one fitted
    This armpiece with its overseam to the band


    Of cuff I button at my wrist. The presser, the cutter,
    The wringer, the mangle. The needle, the union,
    The treadle, the bobbin. The code. The infamous blaze


    At the Triangle Factory in nineteen-eleven.
    One hundred and forty-six died in the flames
    On the ninth floor, no hydrants, no fire escapes--


    The witness in a building across the street
    Who watched how a young man helped a girl to step
    Up to the windowsill, then held her out


    Away from the masonry wall and let her drop.
    And then another. As if he were helping them up
    To enter a streetcar, and not eternity.


    A third before he dropped her put her arms
    Around his neck and kissed him. Then he held
    Her into space, and dropped her. Almost at once


    He stepped up to the sill himself, his jacket flared
    And fluttered up from his shirt as he came down,
    Air filling up the legs of his gray trousers--


    Like Hart Crane's Bedlamite, "shrill shirt
    ballooning."
    Wonderful how the patern matches perfectly
    Across the placket and over the twin bar-tacked


    Corners of both pockets, like a strict rhyme
    Or a major chord. Prints, plaids, checks,
    Houndstooth, Tattersall, Madras. The clan tartans


    Invented by mill-owners inspired by the hoax of
    Ossian,
    To control their savage Scottish workers, tamed
    By a fabricated heraldry: MacGregor,


    Bailey, MacMartin. The kilt, devised for workers
    to wear among the dusty clattering looms.
    Weavers, carders, spinners. The loader,


    The docker, the navvy. The planter, the picker, the
    sorter
    Sweating at her machine in a litter of cotton
    As slaves in calico headrags sweated in fields:


    George Herbert, your descendant is a Black
    Lady in South Carolina, her name is Irma
    And she inspected my shirt. Its color and fit


    And feel and its clean smell have satisfied
    both her and me. We have culled its cost and quality
    Down to the buttons of simulated bone,


    The buttonholes, the sizing, the facing, the
    characters
    Printed in black on neckband and tail. The shape,
    The label, the labor, the color, the shade. The shirt.


    - Robert Pinsky
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  3. TopTop #4142
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Tipping Point


    Oh yes the trails of tears are now trails of blood.
    Oh yes the defenseless will be shown no mercy.

    Oh yes extinction builds fine walls.
    Dead bodies of birds, butterflies, tiny frogs
    starfish summer meadows spring flowers
    the innocent oceans whole forests and jungles.

    Their crime: to be beautiful.

    Inside sanctuaries once inviolable for prayer
    our brothers and sisters
    kneeling sometimes with hands clasped or their heads to the ground
    are gunned down.

    Their crime: to pray to give thanks to God

    Our sisters and brothers refugees and immigrants
    are hunted terrorized condemned.

    Their crimes: to seek peace safety a home for a family freedom

    And those who are different in faith or form or who they love
    are blamed for all the ills of the world

    Their crime: to be different

    Oh yes the dead bodies of dreamers
    ripen in the desert, simmer in the sun
    bleached white turn to dust.

    Their crime: to dream.

    beaten black and blue piles up. The river stinks
    of blood rancid defenseless blood and tears.

    A wall of death will not be enough.

    Oh yes Saturn insatiable gorges on his children.
    The homeless are scooped up like candy.
    The refugees lapped like ice cream.
    But it will never be enough.

    This useless wall of useless fear and hate and greed.
    The skull grins and squats on its ephemeral throne
    on the wall of blood.

    Surely we must ask ourselves have we had enough?
    Is this the tipping point at last?

    - Gail Onion
    Last edited by Barry; 05-02-2019 at 01:46 PM.
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  5. TopTop #4143
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    For My Mother

    Once more
    I summon you
    Out of the past
    With poignant love,
    You who nourished the poet
    And the lover.
    I see your gray eyes
    Looking out to sea
    In those Rockport summers,
    Keeping a distance
    Within the closeness
    Which was never intrusive
    Opening out
    Into the world.
    And what I remember
    Is how we laughed
    Till we cried
    Swept into merriment
    Especially when times were hard.
    And what I remember
    Is how you never stopped creating
    And how people sent me
    Dresses you had designed
    With rich embroidery
    In brilliant colors
    Because they could not bear
    To give them away
    Or cast them aside.
    I summon you now
    Not to think of
    The ceaseless battle
    With pain and ill health,
    The frailty and the anguish.
    No, today I remember
    The creator,
    The lion-hearted.

    - May Sarton
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  7. TopTop #4144
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Tracking at Auschwitz


    Went tracking at Auschwitz,
    looking for animal signs-
    tracks, scat, anything.


    There was plenty of human spoor but
    the only life I saw
    was a raptor
    perch hunting
    from a
    bent steel post
    of a once electrified
    barbed wire
    fence.


    - George Gittleman
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  9. TopTop #4145
    Ronaldo's Avatar
    Ronaldo
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Photo from Holocaust Memorial near Legion of Honor San Francisco.

    Name:  Tracking.jpg
Views: 922
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    Quote Larry Robinson wrote: View Post
    Tracking at Auschwitz


    Went tracking at Auschwitz,
    looking for animal signs-
    tracks, scat, anything.


    There was plenty of human spoor but
    the only life I saw
    was a raptor
    perch hunting
    from a
    bent steel post
    of a once electrified
    barbed wire
    fence.


    - George Gittleman
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  10. TopTop #4146
    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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  12. TopTop #4147
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Half-and-Half


    You can't be, says a Palestinian Christian
    on the first feast day after Ramadan.
    So, half-and-half and half-and-half.
    He sells glass. He knows about broken bits,
    chips. If you love Jesus you can't love
    anyone else. Says he.


    At his stall of blue pitchers on the Via Dolorosa,
    he's sweeping. The rubbed stones
    feel holy. Dusting of powdered sugar
    across face, of date-stuffed' mamool.


    This morning we lit the slim white candles
    which bend over at the waist by noon.
    For once the priests weren't fighting
    in the church for the best spots to stand.
    As a boy, my father listened to them fight.
    This is partly why he prays in no language
    but his own. Why I press my lips
    to every exception.


    A woman opens a window -- here and here and here
    placing a vase of blue flowers,
    on an orange cloth. I follow her.
    She is making a soup from what she had left
    in the bowl, the shriveled garlic and bent bean.
    She is leaving nothing out.


    - Naomi Shihab Nye
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  14. TopTop #4148
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Kill The Poets

    Kill the poets
    Kill them all!
    Who cares if the spirit calls?
    Let me sit and scratch my balls.
    Kill the poets
    Kill them all!

    Kill the poets
    It's time to fight
    Stunning metaphors
    And sudden insight
    The hidden meaning in a raven's call.
    Me, I'm ready for some football!
    Kill the poets
    Kill them all!

    Kill the painters
    It's the same damn breed.
    We've got TV so where's the need?
    False perspective and plein air
    Making us see what isn't there.
    Look, reds are reds and blues are blues.
    I'm happy with my Fox snooze.
    Kill the painters
    Let's get them too!

    But these poets
    They have got to go
    Making us remember what we've always known
    We like our dull and ordered lives -
    Here come the poets with their long knives
    We read our lines and play the part -
    Some poet kicks over the apple cart

    Kill the poets
    It's a good start
    Quick!
    Take their heads
    Before
    They take your heart

    - Jim Knowles
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  16. TopTop #4149
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    From the Diary of an Almost-Four-Year-Old


    Tomorrow, the bandages
    will come off. I wonder
    will I see half an orange,
    half an apple, half my
    mother's face
    with my one remaining eye?
    I did not see the bullet
    but felt its pain
    exploding in my head.
    His image did not
    vanish, the soldier
    with a big gun, unsteady
    hands, and a look in
    his eyes
    I could not understand.


    If I can see him so clearly
    with my eyes closed,
    it could be that inside our heads
    we each have one spare set
    of eyes
    to make up for the ones we lose.


    Next month, on my birthday,
    I'll have a brand new glass eye,
    maybe things will look round
    and fat in the middle —
    I've gazed through all my marbles,
    they made the world look strange.


    I hear a nine-month-old
    has also lost an eye,
    I wonder if my soldier
    shot her too—a soldier
    looking for little girls who
    look him in the eye—
    I'm old enough, almost four,
    I've seen enough of life,
    but she's just a baby
    who didn't know any better.


    - Hanan Ashwari




    Dr. Hanan Ashrawi has been a central player in the struggle for a Palestinian homeland. A tireless campaigner for human rights, she has distinguished herself in both the academic and political arenas. Her academic expertise has played a vital role in the development and recognition of Palestinian culture, while her longstanding political activism on behalf of the Palestinian people has contributed greatly to the establishment of an independent and self-governing Palestine.

    Dr. Ashrawi received her Bachelor and Master's degrees in literature in the Department of English at the American University of Beirut. After earning her Ph.D. in Medieval and Comparative Literature from the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Dr. Ashrawi returned to her homeland in 1973 to establish the Department of English at Birzeit University on the West Bank. She edited the Anthology of Palestinian Literature. She is the author of The Modern Palestinian Short Story: An Introduction to Practical Criticism; Contemporary Palestinian Literature under Occupation; Contemporary Palestinian Poetry and Fiction; and Literary Translation: Theory and Practice.

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  18. TopTop #4150
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    I took her name…


    I never thought to change my name.
    Born knowing it was women I loved,
    we did not have the custom reserved
    for others. Marriage was not a possibility
    even though we lived together,
    worked together, shared everything—
    dreams, clothes, dogs, bed.


    After fifty four years,
    during which life changed
    around us, laws that had seemed
    written in stone, opened up
    new ways of thinking about our lives.
    We married, thinking it was for the cause
    but found it was really for us.


    Still, we never thought to change
    our names. Until…
    Until, not the way we planned it,
    (we were to be together, somehow)
    she was gone. I alone remained
    living for both of us, and I wrote a poem,
    signed it as usual, then, almost without
    thinking, added the hyphen
    and her name became mine:


    - fran claggett-holland
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  20. TopTop #4151
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Are There Not Still Fireflies?

    Are there not still fireflies
    Are there not still four-leaf clovers
    Is not our land still beautiful
    our fields not full of armed enemies
    our cities never bombed
    by foreign invaders
    never occupied
    by iron armies
    speaking iron tongues
    Are not our warriors still valiant
    ready to defend us
    Are not our senators
    still wearing fine togas
    Are we not still a great people
    in the greatest country in all the world
    Is this not still a free country
    Are not our fields still ours
    our gardens still full of flowers
    our ships with full cargoes
    Why then do some still fear
    the barbarians coming
    coming coming
    in their huddled masses
    (What is that sound that fills the ear
    drumming drumming?)
    Is not Rome still Rome
    Is not Los Angeles still Los Angeles
    Are these not the last days of the Roman Empire
    Is not beauty still beauty
    And truth still truth
    Are there not still poets
    Are there not still lovers
    Are there not still mothers
    sisters and brothers
    Is there not still a full moon
    once a month
    Are there not still fireflies
    Are there not still stars at night
    Can we not still see them
    in bowl of night
    signaling to us
    our manifest destiny?

    - Lawrence Ferlinghetti
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  22. TopTop #4152
    M/M's Avatar
    M/M
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    wondering when L Ferlinghetti wrote this poem I found this:
    https://www.nationalbook.org/lawrenc...erarian-award/

    at end of his talk in accepting the Literarian Award in 2005, he says:
    The dominant American mercantile culture may globalize the world but it is not the mainstream culture of our civilization. The true mainstream is made, not of oil but of literarians, publishers, bookstores, editors, libraries, writers and readers, universities and all the institutions that support them. That is the real mainstream of our civilization.

    It will survive, if anything survives, after the electricity goes off and electronic civilization fades away, when Nature strikes back in retaliation for what the dominant culture is doing to it. Coming to your local theater soon, the day after tomorrow. See you at the show.

    I’ll end with a poem I wrote just before 9/11:

    Are there not still fireflies?
    (thank you to both Larry's )

    Quote Larry Robinson wrote: View Post
    Are There Not Still Fireflies?

    Are there not still fireflies
    Are there not still four-leaf clovers
    Is not our land still beautiful
    our fields not full of armed enemies
    our cities never bombed
    by foreign invaders
    never occupied
    by iron armies
    speaking iron tongues
    Are not our warriors still valiant
    ready to defend us
    Are not our senators
    still wearing fine togas
    Are we not still a great people
    in the greatest country in all the world
    Is this not still a free country
    Are not our fields still ours
    our gardens still full of flowers
    our ships with full cargoes
    Why then do some still fear
    the barbarians coming
    coming coming
    in their huddled masses
    (What is that sound that fills the ear
    drumming drumming?)
    Is not Rome still Rome
    Is not Los Angeles still Los Angeles
    Are these not the last days of the Roman Empire
    Is not beauty still beauty
    And truth still truth
    Are there not still poets
    Are there not still lovers
    Are there not still mothers
    sisters and brothers
    Is there not still a full moon
    once a month
    Are there not still fireflies
    Are there not still stars at night
    Can we not still see them
    in bowl of night
    signaling to us
    our manifest destiny?

    - Lawrence Ferlinghetti
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  24. TopTop #4153
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Repeating History


    In Krakow, on the hour
    A trumpeter recalls
    an interrupted call, warning invasion,
    A warning arrested by an arrow
    piercing the psyche
    of a peoples. Repeat


    Everywhere, injuries
    enshrined, history felt
    Repeatedly, wounds
    remembered. The wounded, dead
    forgotten by the bowman,
    marksman, indifferent
    bomber. Forgotten by the one
    who ordered the arrow.


    We repeat, but cannot
    delete fear, erase blood.
    We repeat slights and stabs,
    rapes and rage of the ages.


    We are all a history.
    Redacted, invented
    History of our innocence
    And their guilt.


    We carry culture, albeit
    Ignorant of the original
    Root, a curious explorer
    Into darkness, into


    Separation from a whole
    Which held us, hewed a
    Path toward empathy, a forked
    Road now, moving


    Away from each other,
    Ourselves.


    - Rebecca del Rio
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  26. TopTop #4154
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Farmer’s Wife
    (In memory of Masako)


    She sold tomatoes, corn and peppers
    from the wooden stand
    by their Fresno farm
    surrounded by melon fields
    and orange groves.
    Apt at the calculator,
    she figured out profits
    no matter how meager.
    In winter
    she wore wool checkered shirts.
    In summer
    a light blouse sufficed
    In the intense Central Valley heat.


    By day
    she hoisted crates of produce
    and soothed customers.
    In late evening
    she walked with her husband
    by the irrigation canals.
    She could tie a kid’s shoes
    tell a good story
    or just listen.
    She collected family photos
    dolls
    figurines
    and laughed at the clutter.


    She survived
    sickness
    the depression
    the internment camp at Tule Lake
    and raised four children
    who became
    doctors
    teachers
    entrepreneurs.


    At eighty-three
    she died well-loved
    but not yet famous.


    - Laura Blatt
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  28. TopTop #4155
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    To Earth the Mother of All


    I will sing of the well-founded Earth,
    mother of all, eldest of all beings.


    She feeds all creatures that are in the world,
    all that go upon the goodly land,
    all that are in the paths of the seas, and all that fly;
    all these are fed of her store.


    Through you, O Queen, we are blessed
    In our children, and in our harvest
    and to you we owe our lives.


    Happy are we who you delight to honor!


    We have all things abundantly:
    our houses are filled with good things,
    our cities are orderly,
    our sons exult with feverish delight.


    (May they take no delight in war)


    Our daughters with flower-laden hands
    play and skip merrily over the soft flowers of the field.


    (May they seek peace for all peoples)


    Thus it is for those whom you honor,
    O holy Goddess, Bountiful spirit!
    Hail Earth, mother of the gods,
    freely bestow upon us for this our song
    that cheers and soothes the heart!


    May we seek peace for all peoples of the well-founded earth


    - Homeric Hymn XXX adapted by Elizabeth Roberts
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  30. TopTop #4156
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Dance of the Macabre Mice

    “In the land of turkeys in turkey weather” -W. Stevens


    The president smiles to himself, he loves war
    And another one is coming soon.
    Each day we can feel the merriment mount
    In government offices and TV studios
    As our bombers fly off to distant countries.

    The mortuaries are being scrubbed clean.
    Soon they’ll be full of grim young men laid out in rows.
    Already the crowd gurgles with delight
    At the bird-sweet deceits, the deep-throated lies
    About our coming battles and victories.

    Dark-clad sharpshooters on rooftops
    Are scanning the mall for suspicious pigeons,
    Blind men waving their canes in the air,
    Girls with short skirts and ample bosoms
    Reaching deep into their purses for a lighter.

    - Charles Simic
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  32. TopTop #4157
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Hadeel's Song


    Some words are hard to pronounce—
    He-li-cop-ter is most vexing
    (A-pa-che or Co-bra is impossible)
    But how it can stand still in the sky
    I cannot understand—
    What holds it up
    What bears its weight
    (Not clouds, I know)
    It sends a flashing light—so smooth—
    It makes a deafening sound
    The house shakes
    (There are holes in the wall by my bed)
    Flash-boom-light-sound—
    And I have a hard time sleeping
    (I felt ashamed when I wet my bed, but no one scolded me).


    Plane—a word much easier to say—
    It flies, tayyara,
    My mother told me
    A word must have a meaning
    A name must have a meaning
    Like mine,
    (Hadeel, the cooing of the dove)
    Tanks, though, make a different sound
    They shudder when they shoot
    Dabbabeh is a heavy word
    As heavy as its meaning.


    Hadeel—the dove—she coos
    Tayyara—she flies
    Dabbabeh—she crawls
    My Mother—she cries
    And cries and cries
    My Brother—Rami—he lies
    DEAD
    And lies and lies, his eyes
    Closed.
    Hit by a bullet in the head
    (bullet is a female lead—rasasa—she kills,
    my pencil is a male lead—rasas—he writes)
    What’s the difference between a shell and a bullet?
    (What’s five-hundred-milli-meter-
    Or eight-hundred-milli-meter-shell?)
    Numbers are more vexing than words—
    I count to ten, then ten-and-one, ten-and-two
    But what happens after ten-and-ten,
    How should I know?
    Rami, my brother, was one
    Of hundreds killed—
    They say thousands are hurt,
    But which is more
    A hundred or a thousand (miyyeh or alf)
    I cannot tell—
    So big—so large—so huge—
    Too many, too much.


    Palestine—Falasteen—I’m used to,
    It’s not so hard to say,
    It means we’re here—to stay—
    Even though the place is hard
    On kids and mothers too
    For soldiers shoot
    And airplanes shell
    And tanks boom
    And tear gas makes you cry
    (Though I don’t think it’s tear gas that makes my mother cry)
    I’d better go and hug her
    Sit in her lap a while
    Touch her face (my fingers wet)
    Look in her eyes
    Until I see myself again
    A girl within her mother’s sight.


    If words have meaning, Mama,
    What is Is-ra-el?
    What does a word mean
    if it is mixed
    with another—
    If all soldiers, tanks, planes and guns are
    Is-ra-el-i
    What are they doing here
    In a place I know
    In a word I know—(Palestine)
    In a life that I no longer know?




    - Hanan Ashwari


    Two days ago Dr. Hanan Ashwari’s application for a visa to visit the US was denied with no explanation. https://www.pri.org/stories/2019-05-...denied-visa-us
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  34. TopTop #4158
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Visiting San Francisco

    I wanted to curl up
    in the comfortable cosmic melancholy of my past,
    in the sadness of my past being passed.
    I wanted to tour the museum of my antiquities
    and look at the sarcophagi there.
    I wanted to wallow like a water buffalo in the cool,
    sagacious mud of my past,
    so I wrote you and said I’d be in town and could we meet.
    But you think my past is your present.
    You wouldn’t relent, you wouldn’t agree
    to dinner or a cup of coffee or even a bag of peanuts
    on a bench in North Beach.
    You didn’t want to curl up or tour or wallow with me.
    You’re still mad, long after the days
    have turned into decades, about the ways I let you down.
    The four hundred thousand ways.
    Maybe I would be, too.
    But people have done worse to me.
    I don’t think I’m being grotesque when I tell you
    I’ve been flayed and slayed and force-fed anguish.
    I’ve been a human cataract
    plunging through a noose and going to pieces on the rocks.
    I’ve been a seagull tethered to Alcatraz.
    What can I say, what more can I say, how much more
    vulnerable can I be, to persuade you
    now that I’ve persuaded myself?
    Why can’t you just let it go?
    Well, at least I’m in San Francisco.
    San Francisco, where the homeless are most at home—
    crouching over their tucker bags under your pollarded trees—
    because your beauty is as free to them
    as to the domiciled in their
    dead-bolt domiciles, your beauty is as free to
    the innocent as to the guilty.
    The fog has burned off.
    In a cheap and windy room on Russian Hill
    a man on the run unwraps the bandages
    swaddling his new face, his reconstructed face,
    and looks in the mirror and sees
    the face of Humphrey Bogart. Only here
    could such a thing happen.
    It was really always you, San Francisco,
    time won’t ever darken my love for you,
    San Francisco.


    - Vijay Seshadri
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  36. TopTop #4159
    Ronaldo's Avatar
    Ronaldo
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    My photos of the Bridge, old friend and and Native San Franciscan Tom Bissinger

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    Quote Larry Robinson wrote: View Post
    Visiting San Francisco
    ...
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  38. TopTop #4160
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Living Mandala
    At a Tshechu, annual sacred festival in Domkhar. Bhutan


    1.
    Follow me to a small country
    where trees in new yellow leaf
    stand before black mountains,
    where clouds curdle above,
    with sun seeping through.
    Where distant Himalayas look
    like the exquisitely chipped rim
    of the world’s sugar bowl.
    Sit with me and the local populace
    in a monastic courtyard
    while temple bells gong
    and drums beat out
    da-da-DUM-dum-dum.


    2.
    Watch while a dozen monks
    in masks of the zodiac,
    in yellow skirts with rainbow
    petticoats, emerge from
    the temple, their feet bare,
    chests, too, but for richly
    embroidered bibs and straps.
    And on the grass and flagstones,
    they dance, whirl and
    twirl, lift feet, toss ribboned
    crests, ears, horns, gin up winds
    with the sticks they carry.
    Rooster, ox, rat and all spin like clocks
    and counter-clocks, the mandala
    of their ring wheeling in a circle game.
    The winds blow hot and cold.
    The temple horns blow cool.
    At last spent, each takes a solo exit,
    helped up steps by other monks –
    ones not drunk on dance.


    3.
    After the barest of intervals, the monk dancers
    will be back in different masks
    to again leave all on the flagstones.
    They will repeat all day. Meanwhile
    divine jesters will orchestrate with smirk
    masks and phallus prods. They grin,
    teach steps, poke people, invite themselves
    onto audience laps. It’s understood these
    tricksters must stay inside the gates.


    Cymbals are singing and the monks are
    back in red brocade, whirling, holding
    swords of purification, and spinning.
    Have I ever witnessed someone
    dancing themselves into a frenzy
    for the enlightenment of my soul?
    Yes


    - Phyllis Meshulam
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  40. TopTop #4161
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Theories of Time and Space



    You can get there from here, though
    there’s no going home.

    Everywhere you go will be somewhere
    you’ve never been. Try this:

    head south on Mississippi 49, one—
    by—one mile markers ticking off

    another minute of your life. Follow this
    to its natural conclusion—dead end

    at the coast, the pier at Gulfport where
    riggings of shrimp boats are loose stitches

    in a sky threatening rain. Cross over
    the man-made beach, 26 miles of sand

    dumped on a mangrove swamp—buried
    terrain of the past. Bring only

    what you must carry—tome of memory
    its random blank pages. On the dock

    where you board the boat for Ship Island,
    someone will take your picture:

    the photograph—who you were—
    will be waiting when you return

    - Natasha Trethewey
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  42. TopTop #4162
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Politics


    How can I, that girl standing there,
    My attention fix
    On Roman or on Russian
    Or on Spanish politics,
    Yet here's a travelled man that knows
    What he talks about,
    And there's a politician
    That has both read and thought,
    And maybe what they say is true
    Of war and war's alarms,
    But O that I were young again
    And held her in my arms.


    - William Butler Yeats
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  43. Gratitude expressed by 6 members:

  44. TopTop #4163
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    On Aging Fiercely


    I am going to seed

    Look around

    All these blessings need scattering

    Somewhere

    There is an art to Elderhood
    It is time to ask the
    IMPORTANT question:
    Where do I spread all of these seeds
    I have collected?

    I thought it disloyal at first
    To the holy worship of youth
    But hiding the baubles of delight
    Has become impossible.

    The splashy bangles
    Around my bones keep jangling
    sounding like hooray hooray!
    Or I admit sometimes ouch ouch!
    Which is simply
    An invitation
    To slow the hell down

    Who knew walking
    s-l-o-w-l-y
    Could be considered graceful
    Or even seductive?
    I lean towards the latter.

    And I will carry no ordinary cane
    Already a hand carved
    Walking-stick inlaid with
    Chakra colored stones waits kindly
    Against the far wall.

    One day I may use it

    As my planting stick
    Or perhaps an encouragement
    To stand taller
    To better see where
    I am to scatter
    All of the seed-blessing
    That are filling my pockets.

    - Kristy Hellum
    Last edited by Barry; 05-20-2019 at 01:59 PM.
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  45. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  46. TopTop #4164
    Ronaldo's Avatar
    Ronaldo
     

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

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  47. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  48. TopTop #4165
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Letter to the Person Who Carved His Initials into the Oldest Living Longleaf
    Pine in North America


    Tell me what it’s like to live without
    curiosity, without awe. To sail
    on clear water, rolling your eyes
    at the kelp reefs swaying
    beneath you, ignoring the flicker
    of mermaid scales in the mist,
    looking at the world and feeling
    only boredom. To stand
    on the precipice of some wild valley,
    the eagles circling, a herd of caribou
    booming below, and to yawn
    with indifference. To discover
    something primordial and holy.
    To have the smell of the earth
    welcome you to everywhere.
    To take it all in, and then,
    to reach for your knife.


    - Matthew Olzmann
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  49. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

  50. TopTop #4166
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    In The Month of May


    In the month of May when all leaves open,
    I see when I walk how well things
    Lean on each other, how the bees work,
    The fish make their living the first day.
    Monarchs fly high, then I understand
    I love you with what in me is unfinished.


    I love you with what in me is still
    Changing, what has no head or arms
    Or legs, what has not found its body.
    And why shouldn't the miraculous,
    Caught on this earth, visit
    The old man alone in his hut?


    And why shouldn't Gabriel, who loves honey,
    Be fed with our own radishes and walnuts?
    And lovers, tough ones, how many there are
    Whose holy bodies are not yet born.
    Along the roads, I see so many places
    I would like us to spend the night.

    - Robert Bly
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  51. Gratitude expressed by 4 members:

  52. TopTop #4167
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Waiting


    The best way
    to talk to God
    is through those
    sleeping
    on the bus


    Be they drunk
    or derelict
    or coming home
    from work
    or shopping


    so dead tired
    that their bones
    open easily
    to heaven


    Those who
    sleep on
    the bus
    are the
    swiftest
    couriers
    of prayers


    I find myself
    on the same bus
    with them
    on many
    nights


    and
    write a
    note


    on the
    rhythm of
    the bus
    starting
    and stopping


    turning my breath
    at each corner


    It is always
    the same
    note to
    God


    I write


    These days
    bleed
    through
    my tongue
    and pen


    I want to
    risk
    my faith
    with you


    I want to ask
    only one thing


    for you to stop
    carrying
    the torn bodies
    of children
    past me


    Please
    let this end


    I don't seek
    your blessing
    or tears


    or any easy way
    out of here


    My hands
    are empty
    and barren
    as I write


    Just let this end



    BeauWaiting


    The best way
    to talk to God
    is through those
    sleeping
    on the bus


    Be they drunk
    or derelict
    or coming home
    from work
    or shopping


    so dead tired
    that their bones
    open easily
    to heaven


    Those who
    sleep on
    the bus
    are the
    swiftest
    couriers
    of prayers


    I find myself
    on the same bus
    with them
    on many
    nights


    and
    write a
    note


    on the
    rhythm of
    the bus
    starting
    and stopping


    turning my breath
    at each corner


    It is always
    the same
    note to
    God


    I write


    These days
    bleed
    through
    my tongue
    and pen


    I want to
    risk
    my faith
    with you


    I want to ask
    only one thing


    for you to stop
    carrying
    the torn bodies
    of children
    past me


    Please
    let this end


    I don't seek
    your blessing
    or tears


    or any easy way
    out of here


    My hands
    are empty
    and barren
    as I write


    Just let this end


    - Beau Beausoleil
    Last edited by Barry; 05-23-2019 at 03:21 PM.
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  53. Gratitude expressed by 2 members:

  54. TopTop #4168
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Summer Noosphere


    Wet nights, warm days are what we want in the summer noosphere.
    Man's mind one with weather.
    If this is true, life is good, or will be good.
    Can I be encouraged that my sons will find mystery on the planet
    as I did?

    How sweet the slow spring! May already and the canopy not out yet.
    Woods quiet all winter.
    Now I can't distinguish the many bird songs from where I sit.
    Red maple flowers and first sugar maple leaves are, to me, the Christ child
    that's been coming.

    The ancient poems and the new make the 1/10 inch of annual topsoil
    from carbon dioxide loading.
    As a humanist I want everyone pursuing happiness; as a naturalist
    I sometimes pray for man's destruction. As a rationalist I admit
    I lack data.

    O to play slow and sure, even when the tune is fast. Inside an aquifer
    of love for the audience.
    Not to fear or even necessarily obey the changing wind's
    direction. Being here I breathe and make the atmosphere as seen
    from outer space.

    The song of the world will often take you far from yourself. There
    will be no self. How will you know yourself?
    By knowing thyme and dandelion, the blue jay from the hawk,
    the heron in its swamp, black cherries and the one pear at the junction of the trails.
    They are yourself.

    - Robert Ronnow
    Last edited by Barry; 05-24-2019 at 12:59 PM.
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  55. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  56. TopTop #4169
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    The Seven Streams

    Come down drenched, at the end of May,
    with the cold rain so far into your bones
    that nothing will warm you
    except your own walking
    and let the sun come out at the day's end
    by Slievenaglasha with the rainbows doubling
    over Mulloch Mor and see your clothes
    steaming in the bright air. Be a provenance
    of something gathered, a summation of
    previous intuitions, let your vulnerabilities
    walking on the cracked sliding limestone
    be this time, not a weakness, but a faculty
    for understanding what's about
    to happen. Stand above the Seven Streams
    letting the deep down current surface
    around you, then branch and branch
    as they do, back into the mountain
    and as if you were able for that flow,
    say the few necessary words
    and walk on, broader and cleansed
    for having imagined.


    - David Whyte
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  57. Gratitude expressed by 3 members:

  58. TopTop #4170
    Larry Robinson's Avatar
    WaccoBB Poet Laureate

    Re: Poem for the day from Larry Robinson

    Family Syllabus

    The butterfly is quickly seized and eaten just above their lifted heads
    the children had trapped it in the house under glass and card
    the father brought it to freedom in the center of the family garden
    a Western scrub-jay straightway brought the lesson to a close

    In the late afternoon the father glances over his shoulder
    the jay and a waxing moon are sitting side by side on a phone wire
    the jay says, I know everything that goes on in your garden
    the moon says, I bring pale beauty to a darkened world.

    - Lee Perron
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  59. Gratitude expressed by 5 members:

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