Tag Archives: poetry

CARCAJOU a poem

cARCAJOU

Slap tail beavers plunkin’ in the pond water
Duffers under cover snacking on coon fodder
Kids on bikes runnin’ circles ’round the lake
Are rangers checking billets?  Oh make no mistake

Free as a bird
Bury me with my boots on
Can’t polish a turd
But I can can sure get my swoop on

Carcajou, skunk bear, badger, teddy rat
Ain’t got nothin’ on me so don’t forget
Filly ran off now I’m pinin’ for a Donna
Eyes skinned bald and I’m checkin’ out the fauna

Free as a bird
Bury me with my boots on
Can’t polish a turd
But I can sure get my swoop on

Engrams, orgone, Radithor and more
Nothin’ ever works and I’m feeling mighty sore
Dead as a hammer and I’m numb as a stone
Get up and go done got up and gone

Free as a bird
Bury me with my boots on
Can’t polish a turd
But I can sure get my swoop on


“Hey Mitch, what’s this poetry thing all about?” I want to collaborate with Blue Öyster Cult and I’m hoping the Öyster Boys will think this would make a good lyric.

Did you know I wrote a paranormal/mystery/romance book inspired by Blue Öyster Cult’s lyrical themes?  Click here to download it here for free!

The cover to my book “Chatters on the Tide” inspired by the music of Blue Öyster Cult

GOGGLES a poem

GOggles

I remember what you wore
When we met on Jersey’s shore
A simple flirtation
I had no expectations
And then that encounter in Majorca
And in again in Cuyahoga
The last time it stuck

No idea what we were doing
No thought to our undoing
Random coagulation
Without formulation
A thing of beauty even so
Had everything, everywhere to go
We’d never get unstuck

Got up this morning
Shoulda known there’d be no warning
Sick of the avatars
Tired of cords and cables
You took off your love goggles
Walked off without a blip
And now we’re unplugged


“Hey Mitch, what’s this poetry thing all about?” I want to collaborate with Blue Öyster Cult and I’m hoping the Öyster Boys will think this would make a good lyric.

Did you know I wrote a paranormal/mystery/romance book inspired by Blue Öyster Cult’s lyrical themes?  Click here to download it here for free!

The cover to my book “Chatters on the Tide” inspired by the music of Blue Öyster Cult

THURIBLE a poem

thurible

Forever knows no chains
There is no crucible
In which to reduce the now
The map is not the terrain
There’s nothing to terrible
As looking past the now
So I chant the old refrains
Ignite the ancient thurible
And take the sacred vow

Seven steps up
Through the garden of roses
Lies the Kingdom
And in its center
The interior castle


“Hey Mitch, what’s this poetry thing all about?” I want to collaborate with Blue Öyster Cult and I’m hoping the Öyster Boys will think this would make a good lyric.

Did you know I wrote a paranormal/mystery/romance book inspired by Blue Öyster Cult’s lyrical themes?  Click here to download it here for free!

The cover to my book “Chatters on the Tide” inspired by the music of Blue Öyster Cult

TETRADITE a poem

Tetradite

I threw out all my artifacts today
Remnants of the bad ideas and dead end rites
Lithic shards and Plutonic dunites
Forbidden papyrus unearthed along the way

I searched for two pillars, one white, one black
At a confluence of rivers, no going back

I release the curses down to hell
Let them fall with my old relics
With the mad herbs and psychedelics
Tetradite now, all prayers, no spells

I stood between two pillars, one white, one black
At a confluence of rivers, no going back

This singular act of adaptation nigh
True without falsehood, certain as spring
Is to accomplish the miracles of just one thing
To be alive and let my old self die

I stand beyond two pillars, one white, one black
Past a confluence of rivers, no going back


“Hey Mitch, what’s this poetry thing all about?” I want to collaborate with Blue Öyster Cult and I’m hoping the Öyster Boys will think this would make a good lyric.

Did you know I wrote a paranormal/mystery/romance book inspired by Blue Öyster Cult’s lyrical themes?  Click here to download it here for free!

The cover to my book “Chatters on the Tide” inspired by the music of Blue Öyster Cult

AZIMUTH a poem

Azimuth

Nihility, lack of ability, post truth fragility
Thanatophility, intractability, lies and puerility
I won’t be protesting Bilderberg this year
I’m staying home for the season finale and a beer

My old conspiracies gave way way to social media
Men in black have been replaced by deep fake ophidia
I watch steam rising from boiling old avenues
Giving rise to clouds about the azimuth

I search for a torch to drive away this fog
For a light, a lost pyramid or its analog
Maybe there’s a banner of stars temporarily obscured
We could find out there, I can’t be sure

So I ignore the haze and recall the old magic spell
Hand over heart turning my back to this hell
I say the words king and queen forbade
And invoke the oath our ancestors made

Fidem meam obligo vexillo Civitatum Foederatarum Americae et Rei Publicae, cuius vicem gerit, uni nationi, sub Deo, individuae, praebenti libertatem iustitiamque omnibus.


“Hey Mitch, what’s this all about?” I want to collaborate with Blue Öyster Cult and I’m hoping the Öyster Boys will think this would make a good lyric. Read more here.

Pinking Shears and Fishers of Men

Pop passed away back in 2008 and Mom followed him in 2016.  But the home in which I was raised — the home my parents bought for nine thousand dollars in 1962, back when nine thousand dollars was a lot of money — is still in the family.

Although the house has been rented out for almost ten years now,  Mom and Pop have yet to be driven out.   They are in that house, in every crack, nook and cranny.  A house that old, inhabited for so long by a family, cannot be emptied of its essence in a mere decade.

Their belongings still come to the surface in that house, emerging like clay tablets from the sands of Mesopotamia.  Things are drawn out from the backs of closets.  They shake free, fall out, bubble up.  Slivers of paper, notes, ballpoint pens.  Old keys.

The other night I was over there getting ready for the next tenant and I found a tiny box in the attic.  It contained a letter and a Bible.  The letter is dated November 19, 1957 and was sent from my grandmother to my father to wish him a happy birthday while he was in basic training at Fort Gordon, GA.  The Bible is The Testament for Fishers of Men. and the inscription says it was given to him my Aunt Jane in 1954.

Tucked inside the Bible was a newspaper clipping my mother gave him.  How do I know Mom gave it to him?  Because it was cut out with pinking shears, and because it’s a love poem.  My mother was many things.  First, she was the woman who loved my father most.  Second, she was an accomplished seamstress who definitely owned a pair of pinking shears.  I know this because I still have her shears stowed away in an old sewing box.

Here’s the poem, a love message from Mom to Pop from long ago.

This Much I Promise

This much I promise you my sweet
By all the stars above
There is no other soul on earth
To whom I give my love
I cannot promise I will be
The picture of perfection
Or that you will not know a day
Of sorrow or dejection
I cannot sear that you will use
A gold or silver spoon
I cannot pledge a kingdom or
The surface of the moon
For I am only human as
A being God created
And I can only undertake
The things He contemplated
But I can promise  you this much
Whatever else I do
I love you, and as long as life
I will be true to you.

Tons of Zine Reviews!

image

Some of the ‘zines I picked up at DC Zinefest

Now that I’ve had a chance to sit down and actually read the zines I picked up at DC Zinefest last weekend, here are some quick reviews (clockwise from upper left in the photo).

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 Mt. Olyphant is a graphic novel in eight parts — only the first installment is available just yet — written by Zack Ziemba and illustrated by Christine Skelly.  This is the tale of Paul Tomarchio, a mythology scholar who wakes up in a mental hospital  only to find that the doctors, patients and staff are all figures from Greek mythology.  Is Paul frightfully insane, or is he seeing the machinery behind the curtain of reality?  The production value is perfect and professional, the writing is skilled and original, and the artwork is inspired.  I was blown away!  If the quality holds up until the end, this thing could and should win awards.  Buy yourself a copy here.  You won’t be disappointed!  (A+)

Felis Leon is a short story written and illustrated by Christine Skelly.  My only criticism is that the language is overblown in a few places, just a little too over the top.  But this is offset by great art and superb allegory.  Whether or not Skelly was aware of the alchemical symbolism she was using I can’t say.  But the colors of the internal illustrations — red, magenta, purple — are analogous to the rubedo phase of alchemy sometimes called “the purpling,” the final stage of transformation toward achievement of the Great Work.  And the protagonists?  The peacock and the lion?  Deeply symbolic and compelling.  Joseph Campbell could give a talk on this little gem.  Download available here.  Highly recommended.  (A)

Next we have two pieces from the G. E. Gallas collection.  The first is The Poet and the Flea which, like Mt. Olyphant, is a graphic novel being released in installments.  How in the world could you not love a graphic novelization of the life of William Blake?  Holy Urizen!  I’m no Blake scholar, but I’ve got my feet wet on the subject of England’s mad poet, and Gallas is doing a banging job.  And the courage to tackle Blake!  Are you serious?  One of the most studied poets in history?   This thing is fascinating, and she clearly loves her subject. “A tree filled with angels, their light blinding, their wings bespangling every bough like stars.”  Go and get some.  (A+).

The second piece from G. E. Gallas is The First Reich.  This teaser for a graphic novel in development is written by Shannon Brady and illustrated by Gallas.  It tackles the subject of the whacko genius Wilhelm Reich.  For those of you who are unacquainted with Reich, he was a highly educated and respected psychoanalyst who also believed in a cosmic energy known as “orgone.”  Because Reich’s writings are the only ones ever ordered to be destroyed by a U.S. court, he is a darling of the occult and conspiracy theory crowd (and how do I know this?  Back when I joined the Richmond League of Occult Research and Education they had just finished building an Orgone Cloud Buster based on Reich’s plans).  I love the subject, and both writing and artwork are solid.  Recommended (A).

FPOON skate ‘zine.  This is a skate ‘zine, which means that it is, well, a skate ‘zine.  Fragmented.  All over the place.  Funny as hell.  But what makes this one different is the high production value, the color pages, the brains, and the political savvy.  Blending fact and fiction, the serious and silly, this one was much more than I thought it would be.  Check these guys out on Tumblr.  I was impressed.  (B+)

Queer Witch #1. This is a ‘zine in the classic mold — intentionally low production value and purposely offensive — which basically means I have to give it a thumbs up.   I get the impression that issue #1 is a manifesto issue and that subsequent ones will have more actual witchcraft content.  Explicit artwork, swear-filled, transgressive, and refreshing.  It’s a little bit screamy, but if you want to shake up your perspective, buy it.   Unfortunately there is nothing in/on this ‘zine to indicate where you can get a copy.  Maybe you could tweet Kaitlin “Boomboom” Froom and find out?  (B)

One of the biggest surprises this year was the stuff I got from Kelly Chick.  I liked everything I picked up — a vertical folded booklet called Stop Having Boyfriends (“we made too much eye contact for it to ever be platonic/i always get out of the car just a little too fast”), and two quarter-sheet booklets called dear kelly…love kelly and Contextual Awareness (“you just want someone to rub your head until you fall asleep”).  She tabled next to me and she was charming.  She gave away a whole backpack full of free stuff.  People like her reinforce my belief that life is completely not pointless.  No website listed.  Maybe if you email her she’ll send you stuff.

Abraxas by Marta Lapczynski (Fat Heart Press 2013, perfect-bound, 50 pages).  The most expensive item I bought this year, and worth the $8.00 price tag.  This is classic NY stream prose poesy — grimy, gutsy, Ginsbergian, nerve-jangling shit.  Non-traditional construction sometimes hides her message rather than reveals it, and at times I wished she just wrote her story ‘straight.’  Still, Lapczynski should be very proud of what she’s done in this stunning little tome: “We’ve always been on the brink of losing our jobs.  We were born walking the line, took our first holy breaths already mid-collapse.”  She’s “swimming depths and waiting deep.” Fat Heart Press is now Elation Press.  Get yours here. (A+)

Quiet Desperation: A Zine about Heist Movies needs a better cover.  How can you put a 7th grade piece of art (no offense?) on the front of a doctoral thesis on the subject of heist movies?  Luke Stacks has produced a 28-page half-fold booklet full of real deal film criticism that’s comprehensive, educated, and professional.  At the end he promises to go even deeper in subsequent issues?  How?  This ain’t a ‘zine — it’s a reference book.  Put it on your shelf next to your Oxford English Dictionary and your Brittanica.  And he included Run Lola Run so he gets extra points.  Email Luke and I’m sure he’ll hook you up. (A+)

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That’s all my reviews for this year!