Unspeakable

Poetry is the art of saying the unsayable, that which can only be said in a kind of music, which can be said in no other way.

I have always felt, very strongly, that all art should be allowed to speak for itself. Maybe that’s most essentially true of poetry.

Res ipsa loquitur.

Our lives are a mystery to us. So much happens at the level of shadow and heartbeat, of spirit, breath and reflection.

If you ask a poet, “what does it mean?” you’re asking for the unspeakable to be spoken, for a song without music, for a kind of life demeaned and stripped of art. If it could be said the way you want it explained, it wouldn’t be poetry in the first place. You’re asking him to take that work out of its context and put it in yours.

Read it again. Read it at sunrise or in the bathtub. Read it while rain pounds on the house. Read it with one eye open or with a mouth full of feathers and wine. Read it over and over until it gets through to you. Or give up. Move on and try again when you’re older. When you can hear the clock more clearly ticking, maybe it’s time.

His art is eccentricity, his aim
How not to hit the mark he seems to aim at,

His passion how to avoid the obvious,
His technique how to vary the avoidance.

– Robert Francis

http://poemhunter.blogspot.com/2007/05/pitcher.html

Adagio Before Dinner

Sunday, late afternoon and early summer.
Cooking smells rise from the four directions
of time, past, future, now, and forever.
The small dog dozes in shadow, as do I.

The songbirds and a ring neck dove
in the jacaranda join the breeze
and the windchimes for a long quartet.
Adagio for a sabbath of forgotten prayers.

I don’t remember you very well anymore,
and that’s no fault of mine. I remained.
There are days when I am still, listening,
and I can hear the planet turn and sigh.

 

 

J. Kyle Kimberlin
7.02.2017

Creative Commons Licensed

 

Have nothing

“Have nothing in your homes that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
-William Morris.

There are many things around me that claim their beauty from a still, small place on the arc of memory.

Commander in Cheese

…on the obedience we all give to Trump.

Imagine this: One night you’re watching TV and Trump appears in a breaking news address, live from the Oval Office, with the portrait of Jackson behind him. He’s gripping his diamond encrusted golden iPhone and live-tweeting as he says, “I’m the president now and trust me I’m the best president there ever was, really fantastic, and I command all of you to think about me every day, a lot every day, and it will be some really great thinking because it’s about me.”

Would you do as you’re told? Well, some people would. But the majority of Americans would flip the bird at their TV, say something to the effect of kiss my ass you ignorant and perfidious bastard, and spend the rest of the evening thinking about Trump anyway.

What? Yep.

What if El Cheeto Bandito could make you think about him for hours every day, and every evening before you go to bed, without ever saying that’s what he wants? No demands or commands or pleas, just continuous, unflinching, attention. How much and how often do you think about Trump? You’re thinking about him right now, and you think about him a lot. So do I.

“But wait, no,” you say, “we have to keep watching him, we have to keep an eye on him because he’s fucking up the whole country and pounding democracy flatter than hammered shit and he must be vigilant or he’ll get away with it.”

Prove it. Prove that our constant vigilance is making an actual difference. There are 340-some-odd million Americans. How many have to be learning about the latest Babyhands Atrocities at any given moment?

“But I don’t worry about him because I like him or support or agree,” you insist. “I think about him because I hate him! I haaaaaate him soooo muuuch! And I haaate every treasonous sumbitch who voted for him and I hope they pop like a big bag of Orville Redenbachers on the stoves of hell foreeeeever.” Cool. I’m with you on that. But all that hatred hurts Vile Lord Damput exactly how?

Here’s the ironic part. Our obsession with Trump, our addiction to the continuous effluvium of his stupidities, and our hatred of him and his supporters and everything they represent really does do a lot of damage. To us.

Der Hair Fuhrer is not worthy of a passing thought, let alone our constant contemplation. But we are giving Darth Donald vast tracts of our time, our sense of peace and contentment, our full attention, and ultimately our lives. And we’re giving all that up for free. He is sucking the happiness out of our homes and families, the focus out of our work, and the light out of our days, and we’re letting him do it. The stress is shredding our nervous systems and robbing us of sleep.

Enough. I say enough. It’s time to evict The Landlord from the vacation rentals between our ears for non payment, commission of waste, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

Let’s cut back, way back. Let’s learn to pace ourselves because impeachment is going to be a long and muddy road. Maybe check the news every few days to see if the Republic still stands, OK. But otherwise find our way back to the things we love and Beings who love us and get on with our lives. There is no better way to beat the Trumps of the world than to show them they don’t matter, they don’t dominate, and we will not follow them into the darkness.

To Cease To Be

Oh God, let me be this kind, this loving, and I will ask for nothing else.

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I will close my eyes in this darkened room
and remember faces, so dear and far away
and death will be nothing anymore.

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