How To Write Free Verse Poetry in 11+ Easy Steps ?

How to Spawn Poetry Like Deviled Eggs With Caviar in 10 Elephant Steps

    If you’re going to write poetry, please, for the sake of the human race and for the comfort of literate mammals, or those read to, don’t write about what you know, even if you’re a Rocket Scientist. Nota bene (N.B.), a Rocket Scientist must know higher and higher advanced mathematics, and although there is poetic charm in differential equations, the mythology of the moon will be more poetic for a few more years.

The Hummingbird Sings the π Song

Running in circles
in a dream about π
I traveled to
the hummingbird muse,

she among
banana peels and fruit flies,
3 meters from hiding places
in elm, mulberry, and willow
that she

might indeed feed
on flowers after
our magic hour.

Her fluttering wings
murmured a song for me
an answer to a question
I hadn’t yet asked.

“How big is π ” I asked.

She stood a moment:
convulsed two wings
oddly flat and still like
outstretched hands

Almost like a fisherman bragging:
THIS BIG.

Oh! I said.
But that’s four centimeters.
TOO BIG.

After a flutter
she stood again:
THIS BIG.

Um.
three centimeters.
TOO SMALL.

Well then I’ll
flutter a song
I call:
Too Big Too Small:
it starts loud and fades away, and
you must tell me when to stop
when I’ve shown you what you want.

How will I know?

It’s your dream
so you’ll know.
Hmmmm.

Hurruph gee
I murmur
many times
though the song
is beautiful

Hmmmmm

It’s fading, and then…
Hmm, I say
“STOP!”

THIS BIG!

The wings were stretched
a smidgen over three centimeters.
But how much?

I don’t know, she said.
Look and listen to the song.
When the music is in your heart
you’ll hear it in the silence.

    Writing poetry is impossible if you want to be stylish with ambiguity or vagueness. True poetry does not flow out from pen or sword or computer. It is a thing that escapes on the backs of creatures who run wild or sleep on a couch, but is it encapsulated like a virus.
    No, there is a poetic skin on its matrix of thought that is entangled in emotion, and sometimes the creature is injured and bleeds. It growls and purrs but often bleats from the woolly heart of chaos, bleats on the cold beachhead at dawn, setting patterns in the crystalline sands of time. Mello, it retreats to the meadow, becomes a lamb. Is there a shepherd or a wolf about, or is it a wolf?
    Behold the blurted poem — record it. But if you must write in blood, write in ketchup, because it tastes better and bleeding out tends to stop a poem. Remember, in greasing the way, French fries are deep fried, shallots are shallow. We mostly have onions.
    Yes, poetry is impossible. Poetry exudes from the pores like sweat and oil. It stains the fabric of exhibition. So then some items to consider:

1. Don’t read too much recommended poetry. Poetic poisoning can seize you eruditely, taking you, clouded in pristine smoke, to a land of oxymoronic sweet stench, an un-pop literature den of denizens pontificating with lit cigar wands waving towards an unholy upper atmosphere, a heavenly hell with cirrus puffs, those feathery clouds with dandruff flakes.

2. Write from the middle. When you start to write a poem, you’re in the middle of something. You’re going to have to write an introduction so somebody will know why rambling through a forest of ideas doesn’t make birds fall out of the trees from boredom or from being frightened by a crazy person invading their territory. So, when you start a poem from a notion, it’s likely that it’s going to wind up being a pitch in the middle of a game — you’re going to need a new beginning and a new end. By the way, as I started to imply, nature poems usually don’t work out. When I’m tempted to try that stale genre I get my ideas from the horse’s mouth or in this case, from a little bird. [Idiom alert: “from the horse’s mouth,” and “a little bird told me”].

Avian Translation

I’ve always wanted to speak
to the smaller birds, so
I’ve done a lot of weird whistling

Sometimes a little birdie cocks her head
and tries to see if I’m a threat or a bird benevolent,
but I’m neither a mate nor predator, just
a conversationalist

So I whistle something which means
“give tomatoes to Owls, like Caesar.”

And she says, “Huh, what? And
for a Human you don’t look so bad
even though you have no feathers.
Why is it that you can’t fly?
It’s so easy.”

And I said, “Why is it that
you can’t speak and write novels.”

“Well, then,” it said, “have you written one lately?”

And I said, “Um, no…”

And it said in a way that I think it meant kindly that
I was a birdbrain.

3.     So you have a great idea or theme and you’ve written a line. Now you think the next (or alternate line) must rhyme. Sometimes none of the rhyming words make sense with your theme, and all the synonyms you might try to substitute for the first line don’t really express what you want to say. Despair?
    Oh, to rhyme is divine, sometimes, if you can keep your original thought, or re-do the whole poem to match the new theme that’s been implied by your quirky synonym choice. I mean, you have a poem about a “pest” and it could be about a guest or an insect or both, but you definitely didn’t intend it to take place in Budapest, or on top of Mount Everest, and a cockroach doesn’t have a “breast.” So you have to decide whether to stay true to your original idea or go with Kafka, or go with God, or go to an inquest for a dead metaphor, or don’t rhyme.

4. Yes, you do have to edit. Put it aside and try to forget about it. Come back using your best method acting skills and pretend you’re another person. This other person should be able to read and understand the poem. If the meaning is obscure, you have a problem. Perhaps you can add an explanatory phrase, or add a dramatic interlude. If you fade back into yourself, you might find yourself saying, “What was I thinking?” Maybe you can answer yourself or look for your scrap notes.

5. Make scrap notes.

6. Develop the proper attitude. I sometimes do OK, but

    I Hate Poetry

I claw through words
growling to rip the meat,
add a soupçon to
a consommé, but
don’t make me
eat my soup in the woods

Like a bear
I hate poetry, because
it’s senseless to be dense
letting forest rangers throw
huh words in a campfire.

What would I want with dense description:
it makes my soup too thick, and
if I burn my tongue,
emotions will be hot
without corn indigestible.

Don’t make me
eat in the woods. My
kingdom for a kitchen table.

Can I just have my
Parmesan cheese, nutty and fine,
not looking for
patterns
in the wallpaper, equations for space travel,
’cause I can stare beyond the stars
some other time
after I’ve had
my soup with a spoon that need not be silver like the moon,
a simple spoon, only

large enough not to stew me,
not vaporize ineffables like vegetables

7. You may find it odd that you’re struggling to write a poem when everyone else is doing it easily. After all, a herd of sheep can arrange themselves in the form of a poem, and any boy can guard them from the wolves of criticism. You have probably been taught the Aesop fable, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” Actually, something over the years has been lost in translation. It originally was called, “The Boy Who Cried Run-on Sentence.” Well, not every very long sentence, embellished with care, is improper, and such a complex sentence, running naked through the streets like Archimedes, can be used to trigger thoughts for a poem. A main clause just needs a subject and a verb. Dependent clauses run wild. Put them together. It’s not always true that sentences are runaways. These sentences, gracefully elaborated, embellished with the sounds of glorious triumph, with cacophonous instruments of drunken loquacious musicians strung out on their heart strings, like birds and cats who are mine, playing around with joyful noise, making every trill a wave to glory, oceanic, are not runaways, being ensconced in dreams, and pray tell, if I may continue, the words of the angels are infinite and concise like love that sings forever charming and as elaborate as is a sentence to joy, many times re-phrased, re-claused like a Santa Clause whose mythology endures way beyond his run away sleigh, bells of grace reverberating with every sentence pronounced by judges and supplicants gracefully joined in symphony, in sympathy, in empathy, and joined on every path to any pathy even daffy, because the complex can be simply wonderful like you all who indulge the marathon run into oblivion with a billion words and who pause to hear my running word.

Sentences

Sentences, gracefully elaborated, embellished
with the sounds of glorious triumph, with
cacophonous instruments of
drunken loquacious musicians
strung out on their heart strings,

like birds and cats who are mine,
playing around with joyful noise,
gracefully making every trill
a wave to glory, oceanic, are not runaways,
being ensconced in dreams, and
pray tell, if I may continue,

the words of the angels are infinite and
concise like love that sings forever charming
as elaborate as is a sentence to joy,
many times re-phrased, re-claused like a
Santa Clause whose mythology endures
way beyond his run away sleigh,
bells of grace reverberating with every sentence
pronounced by judges and supplicants
gracefully joined in symphony, in sympathy, in empathy,
joined on every path to any pathy even daffy, because
the complex can be simply wonderful like
you all who indulge the marathon run
into oblivion with a billion words and
who pause to hear my running word.

May I write a poem that is like a story or fable?

8.    NO!

    It’s like the children’s game, “Mother, May I,” and you need to get permission from Big Brother or Sister, a Union Leader, the Main Stream Media or Academia, or permission from a proper Party Leader or Intelligence Service like in George Orwell’s “1984” in order to express an unapproved opinion, and even with permission, you’ll probably be erased.

    However, just because everyone is playing a children’s game, that doesn’t mean you have to. Besides, in colloquial English, most people don’t distinguish between “may” and “can.” Anyway, if you are physically able, go ahead and write a “narrative poem.” However, you don’t have to model it after the “Iliad and the Odyssey,” unless you’re writing in Greek. It’s not traditional but you can do it in free verse until it’s squashed or shadow banned.

    Consequently, a fable milieu can be attempted while trying to be a witness to truth.  Sarcasm and satire are handy tools to use while you’re searching for an alternate witness protection program where you can get a new identity. You would need plausible deniability to write something like this:

The Depravity of a Union Teacher

Depravity
would be seen
as unforeseen
consequences:
a union of travesty
gravity
and dirt

The botanist had had a child in school.
Had sad time off; there’d be time too
for the funeral soon. There would be

blood in the kitchen, a kind of
spilled wine in the garden for
teachers of the vineyard who demanded
more whine privilege than little
giggling girls like her Randi
used to be, but the Union

had demanded masked smiles until doom,
more rules for tiny children in a classroom.

The botanist had
more time off from work for the funeral.

Walking in a hellish haze
the botanist felt nauseous
along the way from the smell
of her daughter’s favorite flowers

far afield she wandered
drifting in a fog, in a
random eternal pattern
to reach the ceremony
of the grave; had a thought
(Randi’s vision
made her cry)

She was startled by a reporter. Blurted:
“yes, I am certain that
the teacher is an idiot.

“You want to know? You know…
My little Randi darling flower spirit
was precocious ‘once upon a time’
before a teacher tore her petals off”

This Mom was a little nauseous
smelling her daughter’s favorite flowers
as she walked in a daze remembering

far afield she wandered in a trance
yet jolted by the voice persisting;
replied:

“Yes, I’m sure
it was suicide.
You want to know? You know…
my child vomited in her mask,
and the teacher wouldn’t… (you know)
she came home; said school was fine —
the usual kid denial, and the
counselor said don’t worry

“Yes, you know the story —
report it.”

Far afield she wandered in a trance
yet jolted by the voice persisting; replied
“the nurse said it was nothing”

she smelled the flowers

The reporter fell backwards
when she vomited on him, and
she enabled his fall over
the unmasked cliff
with prejudice.

Startled, she turned around to
walk home, so as to smell
the corpse flower, and to
join her daughter with a plunge of
a kitchen knife into her own heart.

Actually, as poetry, if you examine it, you’ll find some partial internal rhymes such as here:

Walking in a hellish haze
the botanist felt nauseous
along the way from the smell
of her daughter’s favorite flowers

and the “el” sound in “felt” and “smell.” Also, if you read it out loud, you’ll hear some rhythm patterns.

More On Sentences

9.    Oh NO, not that!  Writing clear but wild sentences can set you free from too much abstraction and vagueness like this sentence has had.

    Unfortunately, most native speakers of English were first taught grammar when they were 12, 13, or 14-years-old. For many, those were very bad years and they were much too young to understand grammar. The saving grace, of course, was that since they were already fluent in the language, they had an instinctual grasp of grammar, usually knowing what “sounded right” or “sounded wrong.”  However, knowing how to deliberately construct a wild and proper sentence can be helpful in forming elements of a poem.  Therefore, you should obtain a college-level English style book to refer to (by the way, English is not Latin so you can end a sentence with “to”, contrary to conventional ‘wisdom’).

    While ruminating about the closing of the Grammarland Park where dangling participles grow on trees like money does, pay special attention to subordinate clauses.* One doesn’t always have to abandon sentence structure for the sake of poetic licentiousness, oblivious to mindless rhymes, clueless and obscure, splayed in a littered meadow. No. As they say, “A well placed thought is often dreamed away while driving a car.” Think a moment then.

    Keep in mind, the poetic vehicle doesn’t always have to veer off a mountain road, off a cliff, doesn’t always need to crash into a ravine to gorge on swallowed tears. Indeed no.

   Are you not the Poet-in-chief, commander of the alter-ego subordinates? But do pay special attention to the actors and their lines. Let them have their coffee breaks and line breaks, if necessary.

    After you have chosen your main idea, connectives signal place, time, cause, or qualify the independent clause.  The independent clause can stand alone as a complete sentence — the subordinate clauses (dependent clauses) can not. However, sometimes it’s such a common and subtle subordination that it’s barely noticed. Sometimes the word “that” can be omitted and is understood: He thought the fun would last forever [that omitted]. In poetry, the word “that” can be clumsy and upset an iambic rhythm. But there are more elaborate subordinations to chew on while spitting out “that”.

    Setting the standards, the falling sun castigates the moods, those theses like statues the Muses make, when the day is long, and when the sun’s insidious shadows of fatigue and grief grow in length. But perhaps there is more to life than subordinating conjunctions and adverbs: when, as if, so that, until, since, although, because. Because of this, driving while drunk on chaotic subordination can be dangerous without strategic repeats. More on this later (dropping fragments with love).

    Driving home a point, however, the poetic vehicle may on a dreary day be stuck in a rut.  The car can be broken down near a New Orleans wake, or broken down in Memphis, or in some unknown slum. Worse than the car, even a person can be “broken down” as an extension of the car.

Broken down in Sugar Ditch
waiting for a scholarship
I was wheeling like
lightning struck me down…

Notice the word “waiting”. Participles can be very useful subordinators. They are one of my favorites, but it would be useful to research all of these: (1) Participles, (2) adjectives-with-phrase, (3) appositives, (4) relatives understood, and (5) absolutes. Write a poem, heavy with metaphors, light with joy [2], if it’s to be under the spell of “heavy” and “light,” two adjectives, or do something else:

…I seem to fish by
my taciturn stream
barren of fin splashes
every stone unturned by crab or fish
or by intellect avoiding worms,
appearing to wait for solutions
floating like dead fish,
[1]
but my rod is wound up…

    But there’s a thing about buying a poetic license unlike buying a fishing license.  Words can be left out for the sake of rhythm and rhyme if the meaning is still truly an edible fish — at least a rod and line with hook if not bait. In an “appositive”, the words “who is” or “which is” are omitted and understood. “John who is a scoundrel” becomes “John the scoundrel.”  “A heart which is frozen in time cannot love now” becomes “A heart, frozen in time, cannot love now.”

Write a Coherent Complex Sentence Before Breaking Out Into Poetry

10.    Actually, there are never 10 easy steps to anything. There are always a thousand. But as they say, “The journey of a thousand faux pas begins with the first trip.”

    Well, after all that, one can write in the style of simple sentences especially if one is not writing as one’s complex self. I find it interesting that Jannat grew up in a liberal Western world when Kabul Afghanistan was free, expected to get her College degree, and then lost everything when Kabul fell. She is one who wrote a poem (I was thinking of “Romeo & Juliet,” written here in the voice of Juliet, now “Jannat” […oh, and note the appositives: Rafiq, my friend, my love… Rafiq, my sun, my dove…]):

Rafiq and Jannat1

Rafiq, my friend, my love,
plays are forbidden but
you will write this modest girl
the words for a secret blush on cheeks.

Music is forbidden
but you will dance with me
if shame evaporates like
sweet sweat in
mourning’s dew.

Refiq, my sun, my dove:
a morning will come
when love is due.

Yea verily I insist! Ask:
why dance amidst the mists?

Begone archaic ways, nuanced
rhetorical nits; yes wait for
mysterious replies. I insist

you inhere the day, for
a bird sings and it is you;
a bird is forbidden so it flies

I breathe in joy from the sky
and it is you, blue Rafiq

Hush, I am learning spelling,
oh Rafiq

invoke my name, Jannat, and
you will have my paradise shared

Why?
Because I am washing
watermelon seeds and
not eating them.

I am as fertile as a pomegranate
but my juice is forbidden though
it’s sweet and tart like you.

Write my name on a fig leaf, and
soon I will come and kiss it.

But yet rain inheres the clouds
and salt inheres the tears

Spell me. Play me.

Cast me in a play
like a spell.

Quick. Send your Aunt to inspect me.
I will hide my face, and I will
make myself ugly and obedient.
She will report that I am suitable.

I want to be a star for you.
I wonder if Bollywood is too far.
At 4 a.m. I study my physics book
and I know about drama…

Launch us a rocket to the stars
and find me the “Twilight Zone”
video

But yet rain inheres the clouds
and salt inheres the tears,
the bombs burst in fields

Let me hide us like
a benign subtlety in
the divine flower of my youth

But flower arranging is
a perfume of lies for a girl;
obligations for women,

But yet rain inheres the clouds
and salt inheres the tears, and
bombs burst in fields
so soldiers might plunder

I want to be a star for you.
I wonder if Bollywood is too far
or the North Star too dear.

Rafiq, cast a spell for me.
My father has lost his job.

He is too weak from belief
and I fear

the bombs in the field.
Storms approach our
high mud wall.

Father is insane, and
he will sell me.

Rafiq, are you real?

you inhere the day, for
a bird sings and it is you;
I breathe in a deadly mist,
I listen

* Sheridan Baker, The Complete Stylist (New York, Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1966),  pp. 99 – 111.

1. :

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How Poetry Overcomes the Sino-hegemony of Middle-Kingdom English

Poetry for the Sino-hegemony of Upper-Crust Middle-Kingdom English

The language of tyrants, of elites, and of arrogant leaders distorts a language. Ambiguity and obfuscation can lead to the subjugation of the people now unable to express themselves.

To Countervail the Language of Pompous Propaganda in Pseudo-English with Verse

A short discussion and example

There is an odd sound to the neo-colonial language spoken by The Great Power of the Modern Middle-Kingdom circa 2000 – 2022. There is a supercilious version of English spoken by the upper-crust leaders of the Super-Power bordered by the People’s Republic of Mongolia, Russia, North Korea, Vietnam, Laos, Burma, Bhutan, Nepal, India, Tibet, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Kirghizstan, and Kazakstan. It’s in the Middle.

The dialect is characterized by its arrogant intonation and the misuse of English’s Latin heritage when a simple Anglo-Saxon derived word would do. They never “have” but they “possess.” Although, they do have their favorite Greek etymologies. They have perfected the process of transmogrifying their ironic projection of colonialism’s hog into the gentrifying hegemony-tiger.

Yes, hegemony is one of their favorite words. Another is “bellicose.” Everyone who disagrees with them is a bellicose hooligan. Furthermore, of course, they “walk on water,” because the “road” of the “Belt and Road Initiative” is actually routes in the ocean derived from 21st Century Maritime Silk Road“. The ocean doesn’t actually have “roads”.

Like in the taming of the “Wild West,” the taming of the “Wild East” led to a few un-acknowledged complicities in tragedy. In circa 2007-2008 they manufactured poison dog food1 , and poison toothpaste2 . It was withdrawn and having only a few victims, it was ignored by the world.

The years 2007-2008 were good for China: Oil from Sudan to help against the Darfur rebellion, poison toothpaste to Panama, the atrocities in Tibet3-4 , and the Summer Olympics.

Thus the years were kind to poetry. An opportunity for a poetic adventure was provided:

Olympic Torch5  

The tale of tails wagging:
my three cousins, fallen

cousins driven on edges
of cynicism, bravely
continuing to pass
the torch of
symbolism

One’s traveling by Sudan,
a UN worker who

just wanted
to survive her gambit
into humanitarianism,
come home intact
to her husband, see
the Olympics as
honored guest, perhaps
but

Janjaweed’s fleeing victims
stopped in a camp
for a chat

She, a peacekeeper
listened for awhile
to tales of genocide
from refugees of Darfur

Slaughters on memory pause
too starved to indulge grief for
the dignitary just yet,
a Darfur drudgery one
asked why the worker cried

Bad news through Khartoum —
my child watching cartoons
sends e-mail that
the dog died

Melamine* from China
supporter of Sudan
did the canine in

Don’t they eat dogs in China
the Darfur woman of dead child says

She is insulted,
has lost her appetite for politics

Oil for China
and a veto of sanctions.
Khartoum is happy, and
flies in weapons
for the final solution,
but politely, because diplomacy

is of utmost importance
to China, market dream
for every company
drooling over
billions of customers

She tells her husband
who has a distant cousin
with Chinese roots
to, for God’s sake,
be discreet

Her Mother is from Panama,
hates her husband’s
(as she imagines it)
asian eyes, though
he speaks fluent Spanish
(Chinese, English, Tagalog),
quite a bungee linguist is he

Darfur intrudes:
“Will UN troops
protect us”,
a woman wants to know.
Srbrenica she thinks
to herself, but won’t
dare say

Maybe, safety in Chad,
she demurs, but
even here
another message for her

Leave me alone, she screams,
I’m doing good work

Your Mother had
cough medicine,
diethylene glycol
from China
it says,
a minor counterfeit
resulting in death

Not now,
I’m doing good work

Cousin Jinyan
is under house arrest
for protest

Not now. Get us
tickets for
2008 Summer Games

Her Hubby told me
she’s not to worry —
sending flowers,
has tickets, but

hearing the torch would
travel through Tibet,
I called cousin Molly
the Tibetan trapped in China.

She’s worried
called home to Aba
Sichuan Province, China
to hear the brooding

from monks in the teahouse —
many dead in Tibet, from Lhasa
protests spreading

mad Han hegemony awry
with soldiers and
agent provocateurs
uniforms and robes
plainclothes

Molly doubts the torch is coming.
Thinks runners in Peru.

Odd call
home. She sells
Buddhist statues still,
swears she doesn’t know
the Dalai Lama

I’m confused, heard
she wants to
go to Peru

Odd call home. She
speaks in riddles.

She seems to know Tibet
is not Peru

Not a Westerner
she’s a Tibetan, yet
with biblical aspirations

Speaks of forty days and forty nights
140 dead, and
it seems she seeks
to go to Peru

Odd call home. She

will not peruse the news
from Lhasa,
or even Aba
or Luhuo.
Sichuan food for thought.

She’s singing sweetly
on the phone in English
an old Irish song,
“cockles and mussels
are dead in Peru.”
An odd call is this. Arresting…

Seems she
might be going to
a re-education camp for torture
to learn spelling and about
Szechuan Restaurants in Peru

News of spring colors and flights.
Aba green with
a flood of soldiers.
Whirlybirds hover.

In China
she sells
Buddhist statues still
with cockles and mussels
alive in Peru

No calls,
merry or odd. I
wonder
how is Peru?

Tell me if

a llama died
on the high road
sweet and narrow

greeting Molly of Lhasa
in spirit alive
with a torch
and a ticket to heaven

1Melamine, a chemical derived from coal was found in pet food that killed dogs and cats. It is used in China as a make-believe protein that has no nutritional value. See: “In China, Additive To Animals’ Food Is An Open Secret,” New York Times, April 30, 2007, pp. A1, A8, by David Barboza and Alexei Barrionuevo.

2“Poisoned Toothpaste in Panama Is Believed to Be From China,” New York Times, May 19, 2007, p.A3

3“2 Activists Are Under House Arrest and Barred From Leaving China,” New York Times, May 19, 2007, p. A3.

4“At Shuttered Gateway to Tibet, Unrest Simmers Against Chinese Rule,” New York Times, March 26,2008. p. A7

5Douglas Gilbert, ebook: Back Door Poetry,(Amazon: ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08LQX3ZF7 ), 2019, “Olympic Torch”.

6Douglas Gilbert, Faustti Poems and Jousts (New York: ISBN 978-1-387-90990-2 ), 2022, [Amazon: Faustti-Poems-Jousts-Douglas-Gilbert/dp/1387909908], “Olympic Torch”, pp. 115-121.

Food In Poetry Is Done in Layers Like Lasagna

Are Food Metaphors More Common Than the Moon and Stars?

Just as the Space Program will eventually eliminate the Moon from romantic metaphors and Mars as the god of war, perhaps “breaking bread together” will die along with the “unbridled” joy of horse metaphors — horse power(H.P.) might go like cycles-per-second became Hertz(Hz).

But in the meantime, for a while, let every man bring home the bacon. Chocolates, apple pie, and ice cream with a cherry on top may yet be served before the end.

Yes, the grass is greener on the other side

Moo Grass is Green1

The meadow is green with esteem,
the shepherds sheepish to laugh although
the grazing sheep, the knowing cows, and
the stampede of children in the joyful fields, does

yield a deep moo guffaw in the blue giggle grass
where lovers’ ruminations are wildly wise, gourmet
and they take their hugs indoors where tenderness
makes a warm day fruitful enough for after prayers

Oh yes indeed, all is well when knowingly
the cows come to walk beyond the pews
to stand tall in the chorus under the stained glass
singing, “Praise the giggle grass and the long chew.
Hallelujah we have churned the corner to
times of butter, cream, and honey

The landscape of the shepherd is gentle;
amen and pass the ice cream:
cherry please

The End of the World Is Nigh

The End of the World2

An ice cream volcano in Iceland erupted.
Nobody knows why, but hordes
brought spoons and whipped cream
’cause they all know
free ice cream rules, but

machetes on sugar cane
aren’t needed anymore with many
confectionery states going bankrupt
but if anyone fears the beans
of the vanilla, fears the seeds
of the strawberry and a new flavor
with swirls and sprinkles, fear not

because all can look
to the skies with glee
to hear honey bees buzz,
and know

unidentified flying cows have been seen,
their moo’s seeming mournfully sung, but
when their guffaws blow out of ice cream cones
the walls near blueberry fields will fall
and pistachios will be unshelled

Oh have you not seen
there is no more shelling
and I hear the trumpets triumphant

Oh glory be the syrupy dawn
the caves are full of chocolate.

Regret and Symbolic Gestures

The Layers of Food

The Need to Say3

I always wondered if
you kissed my gifts, ’cause
you really needed them

Tulips for you when I was blue
so you wore the blue dress for me

You tickled me and needled me
’cause you loved my laugh
your two lips often said

And too when you were blue
I almost gushed a thought to you
I never said, but

I love Fontina cheese for melting
and on a lily day, I

made you a lasagna
and you said
there were layers to the fragrances
of Parmesan, of provolone, of wet flour
creaminess to mascarpone, though you
thought I said
mass car pony, and
I had oregano and basil
but I couldn’t buy you
a pony or a car —
only a heart race
at a pace of joy

But now you’re away
and I’m in a cold place

And you always said
I’d share a space
with Santa Claus
at the North Pole

I’d love to see you again
just for a laugh and a pony ride.

Buttercup Babe4

Visiting America, I met her
in a field of renoncules that
locals call butter cups

She’s my darling Buttercup
a compatriot

She wanted to offer me a partnership
in her business and to share business.

But much ado about love in the dew
and then onward afield ’til

we were back for a romp
under and around
the Arc de Triomphe
to play like tourists and
then marched to her home,
palace of the cuisinière
at the bakery de l’Étoile near Paris.

We homed in on her nest
over the bakery with zest, and
she was hot because the
spice of the day made for
joy and frolic at home

We chilled with a wine
she recommended for the night
and a tête-à-tête with an intimacy

and as our voices modulated to a purr
we unrolled a cloth like a sheet of dough
and my Buttercup
melted in the bed.

We kneaded in layers of joy
to be crisp and flaky like a croissant

In the morning, I left early to buy butter and
I had wondered: what is a croissant
if to do it is not to have it?

I came back uncertain.

I proposed:
My darling Buttercup,
let me keep this butter,
have the bakery, and
I will make you a croissant with love.

Well, she said:
You want the butter and
the money from the butter
and le cul de la crémière…
So you my love, must bring me
a buttercup of the field and I will
peer into your eyes until I decide
if you’re flaky enough to cook.

Cherries Near and Far

Cherries in a Pie

Succulent Pie5

by Her Majesty, “Zawmbyee”

I taste the cherries
new and succulent
like you when I
had you for a salad
of me, and there were
many things to lunch on

Succulent days I remember
when you came to my table

There was a lust
to your musk
while you served me pie
desire

I remember
succulent you

I tasted the cherries
you brought me

I tasted you, and

what will you
bring me now?

I wait for succulent you.

What’s Wrapped in Chocolate

Wilted Dreams6

Hating roses is
a passion fate,
a habit like
throwing out
chocolate without cherries

You were a healer
nursed the saved
rose above the battle
fire for awhile,
soothed the singed,
cauterized

I look for the
squiggle code on the chocolate:
it tells me which to save
which pure chocolate must go

For good luck
I gave you a rose
and a promise
for hot chocolate

Roses are red
I’ve heard, but
haven’t seen them
anymore;
hold your ghostly fire

I wrap all red cherries
in chocolate squiggles
never to giggle again,
to love roses wilted

1Douglas Gilbert, ebook: Back Door Poetry,(Amazon: ASIN ‏ : ‎ B08LQX3ZF7 ), 2019, “Moo Grass Is Green”.

2Ibid., “The End of the World.”

3Douglas Gilbert, Faustti Poems and Jousts (New York: ISBN 978-1-387-90990-2 ), 2022, [Amazon: Faustti-Poems-Jousts-Douglas-Gilbert/dp/1387909908], “The Need to say”, pp. 94-95.

4Ibid., “Buttercup Babe,” pp. 122-123.

5Ibid., “Succulent Pie,” p. 130.

6Ibid., “Wilted Dreams,” p. 148.

“Faustti Poems and Jousts”
(US)

UK

Canada

France

Germany

Poland

India

Japan

Australia

“Faustti Poems and Jousts” is on Amazon now. It has arrived.

It’s on Amazon now.

“Faustti Poems and Jousts”

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

            INTRODUCTION TO WUHAN INTRUSION   1

            Wuhan Girl…………………………………………………..   2

“Wuhan girl, won’t you come out to light

come out for sighting

come out for citing?…”

             Grandma Knows a Spy from Wuhan…………….   3

“…Grandma had a Chinese pen pal

a foreign medical student…

Grandma stabbed herself to death

with a scissor in a beauty salon, and

the owner was shot to death while

grabbing a policeman’s gun.

It’s the usual…”

            Killing Grandpa…………………………………………….   8

“Something to crow about, and

everyone must wear a crown,

a corona for the glowing Sun,

a trademark for a dear beer

a crown for an evil crow…”

            Funding Manslaughter for Science………………… 13

“In the spirit of global comraderie,

the People’s Institute of Virology

is thanking you now in retrospect,

kudos for your Dr. Faust for funding us.”

            Faustti, Collards, and Sheez in the Hague………. 16

            “… For an elegant experiment

                   the Death Penalty

                   is worth the risk.”

            Gain-of-Function Blues……………………………. 19

              “I met her in a gene-stoked lab in ‘olina,

              she showed me

              her furin cleavage

              with a sigh,…”

            To Serve Bats………………………………………….. 21

“Gee gin and pee

Xi Jinping has destroyed

all holidays with his virus

from His Honor’s culpable lab…”

            A Canceled Gift From China  …………………. 23

“Remember me from

past Christmas days… …

… without masks, without clothes”

            Mother Charlotte’s Poison Pen to Daughter

              to Daughter……………………………………………. 24

Charlotte’s daughter learns anarchy shopping

            Bark……………………………………………………….. 26

Unknowns smashed into

the little old lady’s

Goode Notion Shoppe

            Marks And Angles…………………………………… 27

“…uh damn, just saying a journey

begins with a single faux pas

said Laozi

not Confucius

ha”

i

            Pagliaccio in a Parking Lot……………………………. 33

The Wuhan virus drove politicians to

succumb to insanity and to

virulent hypocrisy. Some politicians

participated in plays. Gavin Newsom took on

the role of Pagliaccio, a clown at the

“French Laundry” restaurant.

            The Four Nuppets of the Apocalypse…………….. 67

“…Behold, the feathers of truth descend:

the four Nuppets of the Apocalypse

have arrived as foretold and

Huge Bird walks among us…”

            A Randy Wine Garden of Science…………………. 71

“It was the year of plagues,

the year of science.

Fairy tales for children.”

            The Depravity of a Union Teacher………………… 78

“…blood in the kitchen, a kind of

spilled wine in the garden for

teachers of the vineyard who demanded

more whine privilege than little giggling

girls like her precious Randi used to be,

but Ms. Big Union Randi W. had…”

            A Birthday Party with a Cactus…………………….. 82

“… has my brother Emiliano

told you if he’s coming for

his tenth birthday party…”

            Little Border Girl………………………………………….. 84

the screaming girl

in the Plexiglas cage.

            An Anchovy Pizza and a Princess Doll……… 88

“If making the urgent journey,

said, first thing, she’d have

a bacon cheeseburger, key

to sending meals home…”

            Soda………………………………………………………… 91

“Love’s first miserable fruits are mashed, and

bubbles of thought are bottled like fizzle”

            She Had Been Left Behind……………………….. 92

“Oh congressman, my congressman,

my daughter had been left behind.

She had a ticket and a passport…”

            The Need To Say……………………………………… 94

I always wondered if

you kissed my gifts

            Throughput of Lies………………………………….. 96

A Kingdom is given to psychopaths

and serial killers. Delaware’s aware

from vacation on occasion.

            Rafiq and Jannat…………………………………….. 98

“…you will dance with me

if shame evaporates like

sweet sweat in

mourning’s dew.”

            Quirky From Afar…………………………………… 102

The singer’s suicide

            Bacon……………………………………………………… 108

Fatty cravings

            Autonomous Evil……………………………………… 109

 The abuse of Tibetans

            Cooking Gyros For Swat Valley (2009)…….. 111

   Pakistani exiled in New York

            Bhutan College Girl Returns Home

                   To The Farm…………………………………………. 114

   Preserving the family farm

            Olympic Torch (2008)………………………………….. 115

        Chinese Hegemony and Mischief across the world

            Buttercup Babe……………………………………………. 122

“Visiting America, I met her

in a field of renoncules that

locals call butter cups”

            Knives Upon the Table………………………………… 124

(the psychokinesis of the T’ukmpuxogt)

 [from The Fog of the Caveman’s Blog]

            Vision………………………………………………………….. 127

“… one ripple in the ocean…

…like a whirlpool in the tea cup

where I saw a vision of you once

and a prophesy”.

            Toast…………………………………………………………… 128

“…your magical flour

…into my buttered pan”

            Butterflies Can Surf…………………………………….. 129

“Distinctly I remember

waiting for the show

at the little creek

where blossoms fall on

floating ice cream sticks”

            Succulent Pie……………………………………………….. 130

“I taste the cherries

new and succulent

like you …”

            If I Would Kiss Your Day……………………………. 131

“If you would let me

make kisses, and

seize the rhythm

of your smile…”

            Wounded in Time……………………………………. 132

“The Fates told me so:

nothing in the world is mine”

            Washing Windows…………………………………… 134

“She asked me why

window-washers wear harnesses”

            Why Did You Plant Flowers…………………….. 135

“Why did you not go

when I told you

the tanks are coming.”

            Rubble of You…………………………………………. 136

“You are so beautiful

with streaks of dirt

on your face, and

torn clothes.”

            Her Pink Camera…………………………………….. 137

Don’t know —

haven’t heard from you.

Did you get the batteries

and go into the storm surge?

            Homing Pigeon………………………………………… 139

“Dear Cathy had said

the King forbids me to ever return…”

            Losing Our Shirt……………………………………… 142

“We hired a limousine

to go gambling at

the House of Cards

in an Earthquake Zone.”

            Meadow of Doom…………………………………….. 143

“Give me my praise

I shall not be wanted”

            The Twirl………………………………………………… 144

I lost her in the tornado;

now I’m lonely, twisted and cold

            Extraterrestrial Rock…………………………………… 145

“…Her husband is a Superman for her

but in their scientific field they cannot

escape their dying planet in joy”

            The Foil of the Heart……………………………………. 146

“I see the point of your fencing;

touch me and I’ll be your thin crazy sword”

            Tectonic………………………………………………………. 147

“…My child cries:

Why is the world broken?”

            Wilted Dreams…………………………………………….. 148

Hating roses is

a passion fate,

a habit like

throwing out

chocolate without cherries”

            Fleshing Out the Text…………………………………… 149

“They were walking text-makers

and emoji hunters, but…”

            Contest………………………………………………………… 150

“I stood on stage

behind a screen

with a robot”

            Some Secret Sadness……………………………………. 152

Oh sweet woman

what has startled you?

            The Only Man I Could Ever Love………………… 153

    By “Diane”

“The only man I could ever love

ran away with my sister”

            Immunity by “Diane”………………………………….. 154

“I’d rather play hooky today with a Frisbee toss

than listen to my tyrant boss

the eminent ambassador on…”

            Don’t Be Dry…………………………………………… 155

“My dry-eye Granny used to say:

if you can’t afford eye drops…”

            If I Could Rest…………………………………………. 156

“I am too weak and wounded

to march with you.  Let me rest

to remember when you removed

your head scarf in secret retreat…”

            Adopt A Martyr Lottery Machine……………. 158

“It’s in the Supermarket

between the frozen vegetables

and the fish monger concession”

            Cold Volcano…………………………………………… 159

  by “Zawmb’yee Nuje”

Sometimes he’s cold, but

            Walking With Doug…………………………………. 160

   by “Zawmb’yee Nuje”

On a sunny sign day across the street

the sign said WALK ye

carefully, and we did

            For The Music of Love I Walk…………………. 162

   by “Zawmb’yee”

From afar I heard his

basso profundo

            Mountain Man………………………………………… 164

   by Zawmb’yee Nuje

Mountain Man,

I have seen you soften

when

my love went fishing in your streamix

            The Frizz of My Hair…………………………………… 165

  By Zawmb’yee Nuje

There has been

a maple syrup rain in my dreams

a downpour of sweet premises

a thick and sticky bane

            The Season After Winter……………………………… 167

    By “Zawmb’yee Nuje”

“To walk

the beat of the beating sun light show

beat metered by trees

light tune for strollers and lovers…”

            What Fate Sees……………………………………………. 168

Once I wrote you a rain song

when soaking-wet you cried.

What became

of the rain?

            Props for Us………………………………………………… 171

All we’re wanting

is proper respect, when we come home, hey

propers for tax money, hey props…

            Watching Kindness……………………………………… 173

I saw you kneel

to heal a boy

who dropped a toy

smithereens a laugh

            Coin a Word for Me…………………………………….. 175

Once a gem,

the word’s been scrubbed

like a pejorative stone

in a teary creek, an

old river gone shallow

            Reading Palms…………………………………………. 178

“…Twice I had a dream of you:

you put your face in my hand and

I caressed your cheek

like a cloud in my palm, because…”

            Dove……………………………………………………….. 179

Oh Dove,

give us our daily berry,

and gracious are you

to lend us your feather

            Loneliness Song……………………………………….. 180

Loneliness is being good

One forlorn is

misunderstood

            The Daylight Special………………………………… 182

Let Diogenes in Daylight,

shine a light on Wreaths

(at democracy’s grave)

            Swallow Me…………………………………………….. 185

Oh say,

drink my magic potion

to hum an “Ode to Joy”

dear, yes

hum Beethoven

hum Dusty

            My Poem For Mommy Steno……………………. 187

Mommy, a Lady’s writing

big hand for me with commas.

Did you write me down, and

everything? Ok. Here goes:

            Torn By Love………………………………………………. 189

Grandmother,

we had a loss together:

I was torn out

by love

by being

            Foamy Dream……………………………………………… 193

There is an ocean at dawn

that skirts the night tides

crashing swirls and sea birds

            By the Rules………………………………………………… 195

I knew a young upper class talking cat

who went to a trés chic hospital

with all the most enlightened accommodations

            When Leaves Are Afloat……………………………… 196

The chirping of sorrow…

let’s too many birds of loneliness

fall prey to predators

who pounce on despair.

            Tea……………………………………………………………… 198

Climbing away to a mist beyond foliage

where leaves leave peaks alone

naked at the top

no tea leaves to read

            Licit…………………………………………………………….. 201

“…I came, away from the ups and downs.  Your

door was open that night for me; I peeked

to see you singing to the stars; would’ve …”

            Hack Witch of the Century Studies…………… 202

“Reaction Formation”

I have my scepter

my plaque:

Altruist of the Century.

Mom would be so pleased.

            Nightmares……………………………………………… 206

Dearest precious child with nightmares,

I have a white-light love to envelop you.

            Where Do Dragons Hunt in Bhutan?……….. 207

Cold and loneliness

are in the room,             

snow outside

with paw prints

            Hurtin’ On The Road To Home ………………. 209

“Oh everybody hurts so bad,

but I didn’t want it to be you”

            Riding……………………………………………………… 211

“I imagine you drifting

in thoughts on the bus

by the window with

a mystery package”

            Adventures of You…………………………………… 212

“I told you not to go to the South Pole

because I don’t want you to freeze”

            A Random Love………………………………………. 213

“I don’t know anything about coping,

I’m just hoping you’re hopping to

cop a plea for me in a vague space”

            Windmills and Dead Birds……………………….. 214

“The lambs can not feed, because

the vandals did trample the grass

Behold, the shepherd is my overlord,

he’s my Father who art in Washington”

            All the Metaphors Are Dead…………………….. 216

What’s to be done, Emily Luna

if all the metaphors are dead?

You are the prettiest scientist I know.

            Peng Shuai Takes the Ball In Her Court…… 219

Is it not congenital animal vice that

the premier Lion party predator will

tend to grope a tennis antelope

            Mrs. Claus Hates Sonnets…………………………. 221

Santa Claus left her

a sonnet to read:

The romp of love beguiles, a playful horse

            Love Inheres a Romance True…………………. 226

A free spirit loves everyone,

not only one romance. For one…

            I Will Not Thank a Sunny Day…………………. 228

Traveling frayed

I’d have thanked a sunny day

if rain had not fallen, …

            Princess Beast………………………………………….. 229

by “Alice”

Suicide in an era of corona.

In fat assignments

I explain death or not.

            Litchi Regime………………………………………….. 235

Oh citizen,

display your social demerits

            When a Song Explodes…………………………….. 238

Some in the bomb shelter say

Larysa is delusional because

she says her baby Lyudmyla

wants to hear her father…

play his cello for her…

            Pregnant Silence………………………………………. 241

    by “Inna”

Grygoriy and I are not deranged

permanent members of humanity

because names can be changed.

            The Firing Squad…………………………………….. 245

…In a muzzle flash

anything can be justified

with a monster Putnik lie…

Moscow cries Video! Sees

children running in the streets

shouting “Dah, dah, ma-ma,” and

shooting Russian ‘peacekeepers.’

            Open Skies In Ukraine…………………………………. 250

    (Bucha)

They say

in the South the invaders

are like Colorado potato beetles,

dumb bastards in the Donbas;

            The Art of War……………………………………………. 254

by “Vlad Putnik”

If a warrior’s leaders can well tolerate the

indignant kerfuffles of useful diplomats, then

a hypersonic missile is mightier than a missive

and in the leisurely pace of a useful psychopath,

a siege can be won by targeting children…

            DisCERNment…………………………………………….. 256

Sometimes diabolical

desperation breeds a need for

science beyond curiosity…

            The Price a Gas Station Owner Pays…………….. 259

The detectives took the swabs,

made the photos. We’re

allowed to wash the blood

off the gas pumps

            Off the Wall………………………………………………… 261

She had had the news on her cell phone.

She smiled, and he’d have smiled too

with throbbing heart, taste of

champagne on their lips.

            Cute……………………………………………………………. 263

She is so cute

when she loves the cute,

sends me…

            The Hummingbird Sings the π Song…………. 264

Running in circles

in a dream about π

I traveled to

the hummingbird muse,

            I Can Hear the Hummingbird………………….. 267

A little ordinary bird told me

the hummingbird can hear

the flower sing the tune of the petal…

How To Write A Free Verse Poem, Part 1 (Draft 1)

How to Spawn Poetry Like Deviled Eggs With Caviar

    Writing poetry is impossible if you want to be stylish with ambiguity or vagueness. True poetry does not flow out from pen or sword or computer. It is a thing that escapes on the backs of creatures who run wild or sleep on a couch, but is it encapsulated like a virus.
    No, there is a poetic skin on its matrix of thought that is entangled in emotion, and sometimes the creature is injured and bleeds. It growls and purrs but often bleats from the woolly heart of chaos, bleats on the cold beachhead at dawn, setting patterns in the crystalline sands of time. Mello, it retreats to the meadow, becomes a lamb. Is there a shepherd or a wolf about, or is it a wolf?
    Behold the blurted poem — record it. But if you must write in blood, write in ketchup, because it tastes better and bleeding out tends to stop a poem. Remember, in greasing the way, French fries are deep fried, shallots are shallow. We mostly have onions.
    Yes, poetry is impossible. Poetry exudes from the pores like sweat and oil. It stains the fabric of exhibition. So then some items to consider:

1. Don’t read too much recommended poetry. Poetic poisoning can seize you eruditely, taking you, clouded in pristine smoke, to a land of oxymoronic sweet stench, an un-pop literature den of denizens pontificating with lit cigar wands waving towards an unholy upper atmosphere, a heavenly hell with cirrus puffs, those feathery clouds with dandruff flakes.

2. Write from the middle. When you start to write a poem, you’re in the middle of something. You’re going to have to write an introduction so somebody will know why rambling through a forest of ideas doesn’t make birds fall out of the trees from boredom or from being frightened by a crazy person invading their territory. So, when you start a poem from a notion, it’s likely that it’s going to wind up being a pitch in the middle of a game — you’re going to need a new beginning and a new end. By the way, as I started to imply, nature poems usually don’t work out. When I’m tempted to try that stale genre I get my ideas from the horse’s mouth or in this case, from a little bird. [Idiom alert: “from the horse’s mouth,” and “a little bird told me”].

Avian Translation

I’ve always wanted to speak
to the smaller birds, so
I’ve done a lot of weird whistling

Sometimes a little birdie cocks her head
and tries to see if I’m a threat or a bird benevolent,
but I’m neither a mate nor predator, just
a conversationalist

So I whistle something which means
“give tomatoes to Owls, like Caesar.”

And she says, “Huh, what? And
for a Human you don’t look so bad
even though you have no feathers.
Why is it that you can’t fly?
It’s so easy.”

And I said, “Why is it that
you can’t speak and write novels.”

“Well, then,” it said, “have you written one lately?”

And I said, “Um, no…”

And it said in a way that I think it meant kindly that
I was a birdbrain.

3.     So you have a great idea or theme and you’ve written a line. Now you think the next (or alternate line) must rhyme. Sometimes none of the rhyming words make sense with your theme, and all the synonyms you might try to substitute for the first line don’t really express what you want to say. Despair?
    Oh, to rhyme is divine, sometimes, if you can keep your original thought, or re-do the whole poem to match the new theme that’s been implied by your quirky synonym choice. I mean, you have a poem about a “pest” and it could be about a guest or an insect or both, but you definitely didn’t intend it to take place in Budapest, or on top of Mount Everest, and a cockroach doesn’t have a “breast.” So you have to decide whether to stay true to your original idea or go with Kafka, or go with God, or go to an inquest for a dead metaphor, or don’t rhyme.

4. Yes, you do have to edit. Put it aside and try to forget about it. Come back using your best method acting skills and pretend you’re another person. This other person should be able to read and understand the poem. If the meaning is obscure, you have a problem. Perhaps you can add an explanatory phrase, or add a dramatic interlude. If you fade back into yourself, you might find yourself saying, “What was I thinking?” Maybe you can answer yourself or look for your scrap notes.

5. Make scrap notes.

6. Develop the proper attitude. I sometimes do OK, but

    I Hate Poetry

I claw through words
growling to rip the meat,
add a soupçon to
a consommé, but
don’t make me
eat my soup in the woods

Like a bear
I hate poetry, because
it’s senseless to be dense
letting forest rangers throw
huh words in a campfire.

What would I want with dense description:
it makes my soup too thick, and
if I burn my tongue,
emotions will be hot
without corn indigestible.

Don’t make me
eat in the woods. My
kingdom for a kitchen table.

Can I just have my
Parmesan cheese, nutty and fine,
not looking for
patterns
in the wallpaper, equations for space travel,
’cause I can stare beyond the stars
some other time
after I’ve had
my soup with a spoon that need not be silver like the moon,
a simple spoon, only

large enough not to stew me,
not vaporize ineffables like vegetables
7. You may find it odd that you’re struggling to write a poem when everyone else is doing it easily. After all, a herd of sheep can arrange themselves in the form of a poem, and any boy can guard them from the wolves of criticism. You have probably been taught the Aesop fable, “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” Actually, something over the years has been lost in translation. It originally was called, “The Boy Who Cried Run-on Sentence.” Well, not every very long sentence, embellished with care, is improper, and such a complex sentence, running naked through the streets like Archimedes, can be used to trigger thoughts for a poem. A main clause just needs a subject and a verb. Dependent clauses run wild. Put them together. It’s not always true that sentences are runaways. These sentences, gracefully elaborated, embellished with the sounds of glorious triumph, with cacophonous instruments of drunken loquacious musicians strung out on their heart strings, like birds and cats who are mine, playing around with joyful noise, making every trill a wave to glory, oceanic, are not runaways, being ensconced in dreams, and pray tell, if I may continue, the words of the angels are infinite and concise like love that sings forever charming and as elaborate as is a sentence to joy, many times re-phrased, re-claused like a Santa Clause whose mythology endures way beyond his run away sleigh, bells of grace reverberating with every sentence pronounced by judges and supplicants gracefully joined in symphony, in sympathy, in empathy, and joined on every path to any pathy even daffy, because the complex can be simply wonderful like you all who indulge the marathon run into oblivion with a billion words and who pause to hear my running word.

Sentences

Sentences, gracefully elaborated, embellished
with the sounds of glorious triumph, with
cacophonous instruments of
drunken loquacious musicians
strung out on their heart strings,

like birds and cats who are mine,
playing around with joyful noise,
gracefully making every trill
a wave to glory, oceanic, are not runaways,
being ensconced in dreams, and
pray tell, if I may continue,

the words of the angels are infinite and
concise like love that sings forever charming
as elaborate as is a sentence to joy,
many times re-phrased, re-claused like a
Santa Clause whose mythology endures
way beyond his run away sleigh,
bells of grace reverberating with every sentence
pronounced by judges and supplicants
gracefully joined in symphony, in sympathy, in empathy,
joined on every path to any pathy even daffy, because
the complex can be simply wonderful like
you all who indulge the marathon run
into oblivion with a billion words and
who pause to hear my running word.

May I write a poem that is like a story or fable?

8.    NO!

    It’s like the children’s game, “Mother, May I,” and you need to get permission from Big Brother or Sister, a Union Leader, the Main Stream Media or Academia, or permission from a proper Party Leader or Intelligence Service like in George Orwell’s “1984” in order to express an unapproved opinion, and even with permission, you’ll probably be erased.

    However, just because everyone is playing a children’s game, that doesn’t mean you have to. Besides, in colloquial English, most people don’t distinguish between “may” and “can.” Anyway, if you are physically able, go ahead and write a “narrative poem.” However, you don’t have to model it after the “Iliad and the Odyssey,” unless you’re writing in Greek. It’s not traditional but you can do it in free verse until it’s squashed or shadow banned.

    Consequently, a fable milieu can be attempted while trying to be a witness to truth.  Sarcasm and satire are handy tools to use while you’re searching for an alternate witness protection program where you can get a new identity. You would need plausible deniability to write something like this:

The Depravity of a Union Teacher

Depravity
would be seen
as unforeseen
consequences:
a union of travesty
gravity
and dirt

The botanist had had a child in school.
Had sad time off; there’d be time too
for the funeral soon. There would be

blood in the kitchen, a kind of
spilled wine in the garden for
teachers of the vineyard who demanded
more whine privilege than little
giggling girls like her Randi
used to be, but the Union

had demanded masked smiles until doom,
more rules for tiny children in a classroom.

The botanist had
more time off from work for the funeral.

Walking in a hellish haze
the botanist felt nauseous
along the way from the smell
of her daughter’s favorite flowers

far afield she wandered
drifting in a fog, in a
random eternal pattern
to reach the ceremony
of the grave; had a thought
(Randi’s vision
made her cry)

She was startled by a reporter. Blurted:
“yes, I am certain that
the teacher is an idiot.

“You want to know? You know…
My little Randi darling flower spirit
was precocious ‘once upon a time’
before a teacher tore her petals off”

This Mom was a little nauseous
smelling her daughter’s favorite flowers
as she walked in a daze remembering

far afield she wandered in a trance
yet jolted by the voice persisting;
replied:

“Yes, I’m sure
it was suicide.
You want to know? You know…
my child vomited in her mask,
and the teacher wouldn’t… (you know)
she came home; said school was fine —
the usual kid denial, and the
counselor said don’t worry

“Yes, you know the story —
report it.”

Far afield she wandered in a trance
yet jolted by the voice persisting; replied
“the nurse said it was nothing”

she smelled the flowers

The reporter fell backwards
when she vomited on him, and
she enabled his fall over
the unmasked cliff
with prejudice.

Startled, she turned around to
walk home, so as to smell
the corpse flower, and to
join her daughter with a plunge of
a kitchen knife into her own heart.

Actually, as poetry, if you examine it, you’ll find some partial internal rhymes such as here:

Walking in a hellish haze
the botanist felt nauseous
along the way from the smell
of her daughter’s favorite flowers

and the “el” sound in “felt” and “smell.” Also, if you read it out loud, you’ll hear some rhythm patterns.

A Spoof Introducing An Epic Poem

Investing In the Extraterrestrial Paintcoin

By Douglas Gilbert

Copyright © 2018 Douglas Gilbert

All rights reserved.

ISBN  978-1-387-52268-2

Introduction

It used to be said that gambling was a sin. However, many things nowadays have been legalized. So as they say, let he who is stoned throw the first sin chip card upon the table. Go and be fruitful in the orchard of life.  Have a sip of wine, but don’t invest while driving someone crazy. Find a strategy that’s best for your temperament and skill, but be open-minded.

The best investing strategy to use for mindless speculation is the Frog Coddling Coda Avoidance Tuning (Froccat) method. There’s an old saw that “If you put a frog in boiling water, it’ll jump out, but if you put a frog in cold water and heat it gradually on a low flame, it won’t realize it’s too hot until it’s too late.” So it’s best to throw cold water on everything and not be the frog. But do jump on the Bandwagon before it starts moving.

When you’re first tuning up the instruments on the Bandwagon you always have to look to the sidelines to spot strategic locations where you can jump off into the road or bushes.  Once the campaign starts don’t wait until there’s water under the bridge because that would not be a good jumping off point even with a bungee cord Condordat (BCC) with the authorities. Always remember that apocryphal stories always have a concordance with a frog entry. So when in cold water always take a leap-of-faith (LOF).

Thus, strategic investing requires a LOL LOF Froccat on a hot tin roof, and a happy tune sung like Polonius without a tin ear. So “Though this be madness, yet there is method in’t.” (Hamlet Act II Scene II).

The Extraterrestrial Paintcoin is a more artful form of currency than is its digital cousins. Although, it’s oft been said that first cousins jumping on a bandwagon for a hay ride should never marry on a bridge, or never marry while playing bridge whilst singing a happy tune about Hamlet eating cuisses de grenouilles.

What Is the Extraterrestrial Paintcoin?

The Paintcoin is a square book of coded pictures and poems.  It is designed to look like an ordinary Earth-art coffee-table book of no consequence.  However the Extraterrestrials have assigned a monetary value to it that is honored among their compatriots on Earth.

The Origin of the Paintcoin

The Paintcoin emerged in stages in the community of  alien anthropology students living on Earth.  Starting as a joke, it eventually was seen to actually be a practical expedient for commerce among the isolated students who had been given the hardship assignment of studying Earth culture. It was intended to be exchanged among Extraterrestrials only.  It has since become an opportunity for humans.

However, investing in Extraterrestrial Paintcoins is a difficult and dangerous enterprise, but some people thrive on the thrill of the hunt.  If you’re willing to take on enormous risk you can find one of your own to keep or trade.  But what is the source of Paintcoins you might ask. Perhaps a little background is necessary.

There are Extraterrestrial beings with extraordinary powers living on Earth now, but many are hiding in caves in temperate zones, or hiding at camouflaged bases under the South and North Poles. Being away from a distant planet can be lonely, but sometimes they come to the surface to play with soap bubbles.

It’s fun to blow bubbles, and if you blow them at the North Pole, the soap film will freeze into the shape of a permanent globe before it reaches the ground.  Drawing a map on a soap bubble is a little bit more difficult.  With the right kind of paint and quantum-atomic laser tools, a world map can be drawn on the surface of a bubble.  It can identify the location of gold deposits and other precious metals and medals — even a lost Olympic medal or religious icon…

However, the E.T.’s do not consider metals, such as gold, rare or important.  They have perfected the use of other exotic metals in alloys impossible to produce on Earth. These they consider precious.

It’s only recently that I’ve learned that these visitors from Outer Space are finding it difficult to engage in commerce especially among their own compatriots living on Earth, because they are not comfortable using Earth currencies such as the Dollar, or the Euro and have a bias against Gold because it’s not precious on their home planet. As far as the Bit Coin, their fellow travelers could easily hack into the underlying computer system if they wanted to.  It’s been awhile but I think my sources were trustworthy.

A prescient source had revealed to me that they would choose a rare Earth object as a medium of exchange.  I was told that a small number of these objects would be released soon and the value would be determined based on the level of speculation as regulated by the League. It would be legal tender on the home planet for the settlement of all debts accumulated while visiting Earth. In the rare event that Earthlings might acquire one of these objects they would be allowed to redeem them on any Extraterrestrial planet belonging to the League at a rate to be determined by the local jurisdiction. An Earth artisan would be chosen to create such object. It would be a combination of primitive Earth graphics and poetry to avoid suspicion when traded.

Little did I know that I would be appointed their Deputy Varishynahuki.  Well, there is good news and bad news I think. The good news is that I’ve gotten the commission to design the E.T.’s currency on Earth. The Deputy position is sort of like their version of the Treasurer of the United States.

The bad news is that I don’t get paid except in the new currency which I can only use on their home planet or to buy one of their space craft. I think they are a million or so light years away and I suppose I could go there except that I get carsick and seasick.

I suppose it’s an honor except that no human is supposed to take possession of this proposed object except for me. It had been thought that maybe one or two might “accidentally” fall into the hands of an Earthling besides me and be secretly traded. At some point I had thought maybe I could sell mine for some Earthly goods or services.

Now the problem is that I have to find someone who can trade it under my supervision like in the Dutch Tulip mania of 1637, but I’d have to be sure to sell before the crash. Well, I guess then I’d have to get over seasickness. However, it’s already too late to keep control of the situation.

“Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble…” — Shakespeare

Although it is forbidden for Earthlings other than me to have Paintcoins, it appears that an underground trade has begun.  Based on limited data, a Friends-of-Paintcoin (FoP) network would seem to be metastisizing into a pseudo-Tulip-blossoming (ptb).  But based on inside sources the right to validate is assigned according to an intricate system of both Proof-of-Genealogy (PoG) and of Proof-of- encryption-paradigm-competence (PoEPC) tests.

To simplify: The renegades are distributing Paintcoins based on kinship with Extraterrestrials generations ago. Let the alert investor find one of these, and I will try to assist them.  I don’t know how long the elite Extraterrestrials will tolerate this uncouth behavior.  Perhaps they are tacitly accepting the trade to maintain a convenient currency for their expatriate community. But the Extraterrestrials often research Earth literature for clues to human behavior and economics.

Before investing it is best to study economics as seen in fiction.  Once a modicum of understanding is achieved, the hunt to find a copy of the Extraterrestrial Paintcoin can begin if one is brave.  This is not an offer to sell or buy such an illusory object.  Due diligence should be undertaken by prospective hunters, and no action should be taken without consulting with their financial advisors.

For the study of economics, here are some epic poems to ponder:

Epic Poems

A Major Question About Cream Cheese Shortage in Minor (prose)

What is it anyway?

    I don’t know but it seems like cream cheese is basically milk curdled with lemon juice or vinegar and small curds whipped smooth. So my question is: “Can you buy cottage cheese and whip it smooth in a blender with a little milk or cream?”
    Well, I suppose too that you can just make it from scratch if there’s no milk shortage. [ Homemade Cream Cheese By Gemma Stafford: “… It starts with milk, then… lemon juice. …2 ingredients create a reaction which curdles the cheese… Then …straining the cheese from the whey… is the beginnings…”]
    So, this brings up another issue. Why do we make mysterious and celebrate plain simple and tasteless food that is just used as a texture and holder of the real flavorful item. Cream cheese is the holder of smoked salmon, or holder of sugar, sour cream, and vanilla.
    Look, if you are lost or hiding in the woods then worms and insects are good to eat, but it’s silly to take them home and celebrate them as “gourmet food.” If you are poor, sure, you can eat plain cheese, but it’s nothing to celebrate. Imported Danish Blue cheese is real cheese. Plain American cheese is a disgrace. Well, yeah, it can be healthy with worms and grasshoppers, but who wants that unless there is a horde of locusts nearby.
    Maybe only the Earl of Sandwich was aware of the concept of a “holder.” He used bread to hold the meat while he gambled so that grease would not get on the cards.
    There’s a plausible argument to be made that Marie Antoinette never actually said, “…Let them eat cake…” but actually said, “Let them eat cream cheese,” and that was whey overboard**.
    **Oh, gosh, I see that the rumor was that she said, “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche.” Let them eat brioche. I had that once from the supermarket. It was really good. I wonder if I can put cream cheese on it with crumbled blue cheese topped with anchovies, onions and tomatoes?

Nightmares

    A funny thing happened in a search for old poems maybe worth saving for a new book. I found an old barren poem (Nightmares) that’s in one of my books and I wondered if it was worth repeating. There was a short blog discussion about it which brought up an interesting subject. But before that here is the little trivial thing:
Nightmares

Dearest precious child with nightmares,
I have a white-light love to envelop you.

Let me reach you nocturnally,
so you can feel my dreams for you
to fly your joy across the heavens
eternally my lovely cherub, because
this night I am here at your bed and blanket.

I tell you: you are strong against monsters,
just because I know you’ll hold onto my love,
and blue eyes, my sacred child,
take my sword of love and
fight every dragon, please, dearest.

    Well, so, that was nothing. As I was saying…
    I remember a long time ago, reading about the Senoi tribe in Malaysia and how the whole tribe discussed their dreams and it was considered very important. It was a fad for awhile and then seemed to disappear. I never quite got into it, but I remember remarking that it’s a shame that when children in our culture have nightmares we just dismiss it by saying, “it’s only a a dream; don’t worry about etc.” And we have no solutions to offer them.
    So anyway, I decided to do a search for the Senoi and dreams and found an interesting article by G. William Domhoff:
Senoi Dream Theory: Myth, Scientific Method, and the Dreamwork Movement
G. William Domhoff
March, 2003

Domhoff, G. W. (2003). Senoi Dream Theory: Myth, Scientific Method, and the Dreamwork Movement. Retrieved November 11, 2021 from the World Wide Web: http://dreamresearch.net/Library/senoi.html

[Revision: Stewart’s version is mythology — The Senoi didn’t actually do any of this dream work. Whether the dream techniques work or not is a different question. But the Senoi didn’t actually do any of this. Wow, a whole movement based on false anthropological data. Well I suppose you can have wrong data right theory. I suppose it’s like calling something “animal magnetism” even though it has nothing to do with “magnetism.” But the actual attraction does exist.]

“For the Senoi, life is a veritable dream clinic. The concern with dreams begins at the break of day. ‘The Senoi parent inquires of his child’s dream at breakfast, praises the child for having the dream, and discusses the significance of it,’ reports Stewart. ‘He asks about past incidences and tells the child how to change his behavior and attitude in future dreams. He also recommends certain social activities or gestures which the dream makes necessary or advisable.'[8]”
[8. Stewart, “Mental Hygiene and World Peace,” p. 396: K. R. Stewart, “Mental Hygiene and World Peace,” Mental Hygiene 38 (1954):387-407]
P.S. Ut oh, there is a dark side: a difficult life with fear, thunderstorms,hookworms, tigers, bogeymen, and spirits… (see chapter two)

Note: Loudoun County, Virginia & the poem/song “The Daylight Special” [The Midnight Special]

“The Daylight Special” poem had too many unexplained allusions perhaps (which see). So P.S.:
    In Loudoun County, Virginia, the School Board was trying to implement a Marxist curriculum. Rather than teach pure practical math, reading, and writing, they wanted to add an insidious undercurrent of propaganda to all subjects. Like in Russia and China, they wanted good little citizens obedient to the party, who would, if necessary, report and fight against their parents. When the parents found out, they were outraged. One parent came to an ostensibly public meeting of the School Board to complain for his daughter because she was raped in the bathroom that allowed boys to come in. He was loud and angry, so they stopped him from speaking, and had him arrested. Then a lobbying group prepared a dossier calling parents “domestic terrorists,” among other things. In collusion with the White House, they tricked the Attorney General into asking field offices of the FBI to investigate and possibly charge parents with crimes. Consequently, some parents have been afraid to speak up.
There are also other interesting things to note. The group “Credence Clearwater Revival” wrote a version of the song called “The Midnight Special.” It is a traditional folk song about a special train that ran at midnight. The legend said that if the light of the train shined into a prison cell, then the prisoner would be pardoned by the Governor.
A “garland” is a wreath and also a person’s name.

Oh no, the poem “A Gray Drop” fails (! or ?)

I knew something was wrong with “fallen”. A concept like “a fallen angel” is OK, but in a phrase it’s wrong. It would be “having fallen,” but that would be awkward. I missed seeing the grammar mistake because of all the inverted orders. In a sentence, it could be “From a faucet dripping, it was a river manqué, having fallen into a gray blob that appeared in a closeup.” Hmm, so, where could “a fallen angel” structure be found? A fallen blob? Not very poetic. But in this case I think “poetic license” has gone too far. “A panicked drop” uses the past participle of an intransitive verb and seems to work. That’s as far as I can go with the theory. I’m totally lost for a formal solution. Here is the faulty culprit for reference:

Indoors,
I captured a pic’ of a drop
from a faucet dripping, ’twas
a river manqué, dramatic flop,
fallen into a gray blob closeup

Thunder there! Yes,

but let the rain drops outside
spawn a rainbow end for to
abide her golden heart there
where she’ll flood my soul in
a liquid of love, rapture of two