Life is a troubled dream, and all that is written,

And recorded, and published, is wrong.

The poet studies notes because notes are seen,

But never by the ear which hears the song.

The paper is presented; the scholars nod, and walk away

Into misty decision.

All that was perfected and built,

Falls in the middle of derision.

Innocence will admit its guilt

To the assembled, or be silent, and be guilty, anyway,

Tomorrow, in worry, or in joy the next day.

She, with the deepest sigh,

A wife, deeply conflicted,

Lets the kiss stay, and life go by.

She can go into the public places,

Hear the music and see the faces,

And what they report later will be false.

In the moment Lily came near me,

Her eyebrows were all I wanted:

A shape in a moment hides for eternity,

Belonging to a bright world by a dark poem haunted.






Everything is spoiled.

Young flowers are having sex.

Your adorable first love has a powerful ex.

The jokes you think are funny

Are not, and they are old—

The young’s mocking variations are soon to be told.

All the insights you thought you had,

Are reversed in the tongues of others

And they prove you are bad.

The ignorant and the bossy will always be the same.

The supervisor is calling your name.

Everything is spoiled.

All for which you surrendered, and toiled.

What you thought was new is faded around the edges.

A beautiful suicide you envied

Blabbed your secrets on ledges.

Now up for ridicule, all you adore.

All not trending is trash in your favorite store.

Your heroes and hobbies are no longer on the shelf.

Surprised by the mirror, you are someone else.

The old and the feeble tell you what to do.

You triumph. In that moment you’re replaced by the new.

Everything which ran to you, now runs away,

Because you got older in a single day,

And the one you thought was pure and true

Loves someone even uglier and more ignorant than you.


I was yours when you loved me,

But ownership in love is no guarantee

Love stays—but here is ownership

Still—your breast, your arm, your lip

Are no longer mine to touch; but you live

In me, and “mine,” “yours,” words we give

To ownership, still apply.

Our love existed, and it will never die.

You hate me now, but I am yours.

Love cannot shut, once we enter the doors.

I am yours, and if I live inside your mind,

You belong to me; love is not kind or unkind;

Love’s a bridge which connects two,

The bridge is ours; nothing else belongs, or is true.

Just so, the doubtful truth of God. The thinking

Is ours, even as all the hates and loves are sinking.

If God speaks to you—they will call you mad;

Love the insanity of love; for only doubt is bad.

Believe in God, which you must do.

The mind is doubt; what loves your mind is true.










The fools move too fast—

But the wise see the fools were wise at last.

The wise shudder to find their wisdom was sick,

And healthy is foolish, for life is quick.

Life, in a moment, fades away.

The wisdom of years is blind to the day.

The sun rose and she let something show—

Stupidly you stood there, as she slowly turned to go.

The wise scans the poem, and strives to see

What the fool, laughing, perceived immediately.

The wise talks on, letting go of your arm.

The fool slept but heard the alarm.


Do you exist tomorrow?

I think you do,

But I don’t see tomorrow.

I only see today, and today, sorrow.

I see sadness because it doesn’t see tomorrow.

I hear madness because it doesn’t heed tomorrow.

I only see today, and hysteria, and a lack of care.

Hysteria was frozen before it was dancing there.

Does today have an obligation?

Does today have a choice?

On the calendar I see tomorrow’s teeming nation,

Without an understanding, or a voice.

Today, they say, has a choice.

Tomorrow wants to say something, too.

How somber the ear which hears tomorrow!

Tomorrow writhes and anguishes, suffering with old sorrow

Because I didn’t listen to you.



Deep State, you’re no Jack Kennedy. 

“He told me to talk to the Russians.”  Flynn on Trump.

If the Russians had invaded, and now occupied Florida, this might be an issue.

Trump is the new Reagan.  It’s pretty simple.  History repeats.

One could argue the tax rate is the heart of the matter.

Govt (high taxes) vs. the People (low taxes). This may be simplistic. Maybe not.

JFK was for lower taxes. After he was murdered, we had napalm dropping LBJ and the “Great Society” and the Deep State became entrenched.

Nixon was Deep State, and his overthrow was Deep State deception to make the media look like heroes.

Nixon creates the EPA.

Then Jimmy Carter, friendly on the outside but Deep State all the way: Pol Pot and Iran 1979 supported by Carter’s State Dept.

Jimmy Carter also made war on atomic energy, as Save-the-Planet-politics became another means to tax and control The People.

Then the “Reagan revolution” based on the simple “high taxes vs. low taxes” formula mentioned above.

Reagan laid out the simplicity for the American people to see and the High Tax Democrats knew they were had.

Amazingly, we read that Trump’s tax bill is the first major tax lowering legislation since 1986.

Capital investment, which lifts all boats, had to wait 30 years, and an election miracle, and by the slimmest all-GOP margin, to get a boost.

What an irony if the U.S had defeated the Soviet Union, and then became the Soviet Union! Defeats communism—and then, wut? becomes communist.

Obviously it’s not quite that simple. The U.S. defeated the British Empire, and has gradually become the British Empire.

Divide and conquer. The British Empire: deceptive. Not nice. Ambitious as hell.

The Democrats, since 1986, found a marvelous rhetorical trick: Democrats abandoned their tax raising principles in a very clever ruse: the Democrats became tax-cut Republicans for “the middle class” only. But you either believe less taxes will improve the economy or you don’t. You can’t have it both ways. The Democrats have had it both ways for 30 years, and nobody has called them on it.

Who can forget the “read my lips” liar, Deep State, CIA, RINO George Bush Sr.—and then Bill (me too) Clinton, the Democrats’ savior (who needed Ross Perot to get 19% of the vote to win his election)?

That’s when the Democrats became creepy and mean: the Clintons. (If we forget LBJ and the earlier KKK Democrat party).

So here we are, with Hilary Clinton fuming and blaming “the Russians” as Reagan—oops, sorry, Trump—presides over an improving economy.

If you want to talk history, during America’s greatest boom in the 1790s when Salem merchants (whose ad hoc navy captured 450 British vessels, helping to win the revolution) were among first to trade with Far East, producing the first millionaire, the Custom House where Hawthorne worked, was how taxes were raised. There was no income tax. There weren’t a lot of taxes, really.

Then Jefferson’s embargo ruined the Salem economy. We backed down to the British pirates. Then follows the War of 1812, the Civil War (Brits clandestinely back the Confederacy) and the Deep State is born.

Dante, in his Inferno, puts traitors—those who betray their country—in the Ninth Circle—the deepest place in Hell.

But who, these days, even understands what a traitor is?

Democracy vs. Deep State might be a good place to start.

Happy holidays.


Image result for man singing renaissance painting

The end of the year is a good time to reflect; the top 100 list is the most attractive way to put reflections and reveries into an easily accessible and memorable form.

The following list is a zeitgeist of iconic phrases from popular song. “Greatest” is a huge exaggeration. This is merely a populist snapshot. But Scarriet is fast becoming the master of these zeitgeist lists; we occasionally do web searches of these attempts by others, and generally find no criteria whatsoever: a presentation of narrow musical taste, compounded by highly personalized choices—trees entirely without a forest.

Scarriet’s criteria are based on the moral, the historical, and the popular, and the excitement of what a few words can do.

We avoid fixating on some intricate series of words—by an artist we like—simply because we find it personally pleasing. We don’t eschew the intricately cool, but more important to us are lyrics that vibrate, resound, or agitate the popular consciousness, for whatever reason; we don’t see how this can not be an important criterion. We use this criterion, naturally, within the widest possible array of tastes applied to the widest possible audience (in English) in both time and place.

The moral criterion is crucial—it contributes to popularity, certainly, but it also engages judgment in a way that makes it more trustworthy, and also good—if we may use that word in the widest possible sense. This is why “Let it be” is number one on the list; without indulging in a lecture, this fountain of wisdom seems to us to be the best ‘moral high ground’ advice which, in our highly fraught and frenetic times, it is possible to make, in the vehicle of song. It is even better, we think, than “All you need is love,” and almost as popular.

We like “She loves you” and “Mrs. Brown, you have a lovely daughter”—these two examples rise above the “I love you” two-person formula, adding characters, charm, and interest.

To illuminate another crucial criterion: The simple phrase “paint it black” is on the list mostly for this reason: the phrase emerged in 1966, before the great tidal wave of darker material transformed popular music from “June/moon” to Black Sabbath/death metal, etc. This phrase (from a Brian Jones era Rolling Stones song) is presented as an historical indicator.

Intro over. Enjoy the list.


1. Let it be.

2. One pill makes you larger, and one pill makes you small, and the one that mother gives you doesn’t do anything at all.

3. Silent night, holy night, all is calm, all is bright.

4. All you need is love.

5. Good night, Irene, good night, Irene, I’ll see you in my dreams.

6. It’s only a paper moon over a cardboard sea, but I’ll believe in make believe if you believe in me.

7. What’s that you say, Mrs. Robinson? Joltin’ Joe has left and gone away?

8. This land is your land.

9. She loves you.

10. How does it feel? To be on your own? A complete unknown? With no direction home? Like a rolling stone?

11. Counting the cars on the New Jersey turnpike, they’ve all gone to look for America.

12. Where troubles melt like lemon drops, away above the chimney tops, that’s where you’ll find me.

13. I knew a man Bojangles and he’d dance for you in worn out shoes.

14. She’s buying a stairway to heaven.

15. We shall not be moved.

16. O’er the ramparts we watched the twilight’s last gleaming.

17. And I saw my reflection in the snow covered hills

18. I will survive

19. Imagine there’s no heaven

20. I will follow you into the dark

21. You can’t always get what you want

22. You broke my will, but what a thrill, goodness, gracious great balls of fire.

23. If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning, all over this land.

24. Some say this town don’t look good in snow; you’re gonna go, I know.

25. Nights in white satin, never reaching the end; just what you want to be, you’ll be in the end.

26. I walk the line.

27. Have you ever seen the rain, coming down on a sunny day?

28. You’re living in your own private Idaho.

29. I did it my way.

30. The times they are a changin’.

31. This is the end, beautiful friend.

32. Boxes, little boxes, and they’re all made out of ticky tacky, and they all look just the same.

33. Now they know how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall.

34. Here comes the sun.

35. Go tell it on the mountain, over the hills, and everywhere.

36. The thrill is gone.

37. I put a spell on you.

38. How will I my true love know, from another one?

39. Blue moon, I saw you standing alone.

40. Yesterday, all my troubles were so far away.

41. The fundamental things apply, as time goes by.

42. Don’t you want somebody to love?

43. We don’t get fooled again.

44. Paint it black.

45. Stopped into a church I passed along the way; well I got down on my knees and I began to pray. Well you know the preacher’s like the cold—he knows I’m gonna stay.

46. Yonder stands your orphan with his gun, crying like a fire in the sun.

47. O Maybellene, why can’t you be true?

48. Put a ring on it.

49. Stars shining bright above you, night breezes seem to whisper I love you.

50. The man who invented the stream drill, he thought he was mighty fine; but John Henry drove fifteen feet and the steam drill only made nine.

51. Hush-a-bye, don’t you cry, go to sleep my little baby; when you awake, you shall have cake, and all the pretty little horses.

52. Fly me to the moon, and let me dance among the stars; I want to see what spring is like on Jupiter and Mars.

53. This is ground control to major Tom; take your protein pills and put your helmet on.

54. Don’t let the sun catch you crying.

55. What’s goin on?

56. Mrs. Brown you have a lovely daughter.

57. Why must I be a teenager in love?

58. Hello darkness my old friend

59. The moment I wake up, before I put on my makeup, I say a little prayer for you.

60.  That’s me in the corner, that’s me in the spotlight, losing my religion.

61. Well I heard there was a secret chord that David played and it pleased the Lord but you don’t really care for music, do you?

62. Please allow me to introduce myself, I’m a man of wealth and taste.

63. Wild thing, I think I love you.

64. Is that all there is?

65. So you think you can tell heaven from hell?

66. Imagine I’m in love with you.

67. No phone no pool no pets, I ain’t got no cigarettes.

68. Stop in the name of love.

69. I’ll find you in the morning sun; and when the night is new, I’ll be looking at the moon, but I’ll be seeing you.

70. Everybody dies but not everybody lives.

71. On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair

72. I’ve been a puppet, a pauper, a pirate, a poet, a pawn, and a king

73. Oh mother tell your children not to do what I have done, to spend your life in sin and misery in the House of the Rising Sun

74. Climb every mountain, ford every stream, follow every rainbow, til you find your dream.

75. Out here in the fields I fight for my meals

76. You don’t own me.

77. When you’re a Jet, you’re Jet all the way from your first cigarette to your last dying day.

78. It’s a little bit funny this feeling inside

79. I once was lost, but now I’m found, was blind, but now I see.

80. Last night I had the strangest dream I ever dreamed before; I dreamed the world had all agreed to put an end to war.

81. There was a lofty ship, and she put out to sea, and the name of the ship was the Golden Vanity.

82. Did you bring me silver, did you bring me gold—or did you come to see me hang from the gallows pole?

83. Hey Jude, don’t make it bad, take a sad song and make it better.

84. I’m going to lay down my sword and shield, down by the riverside

85. There must be some kind of way out of here, said the joker to the thief.

86. If you don’t know me by now you will never, never know me.

87. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the lord; he is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored.

88. You can’t hurry love.

89. To the left, to the left, everything you own in a box to the left.

90. Sometimes I feel like a motherless child.

91. Where do you go to, my lovely?

92. My dear lady Anne, I’ve done what I’ve can, I must take my leave, for promised I am.

93. Look at the stars, look how they shine for you, and everything you do.

94. Never mind, I’ll find someone like you.

95. Oh the sun shines bright on my old Kentucky home, and the young folks roll on the floor.

96. If you go away on this summer day, then you might as well take the sun away.

97. Just an old sweet song keeps Georgia on my mind.

98. Eleanor Rigby, wearing a face that she keeps in a jar by the door.

99. They call it stormy Monday, but Tuesday’s just as bad.

100. Cry me a river, ’cause I cried a river over you.



Image result for green in renaissance painting

Acting in the beginning is real in the end.
So love, ritualized and slow,
Now, with me always,
At first, always made excuses to go,
And was sometimes seen,
Creeping with her. It seemed fruitless to send
Overtures of love into the tangled green,
Where she and the other moved,
But I did, and if she loved,
I knew it only when, once, she claimed:
“Custom and ritual defend
The best of love,” and she whispered I would soon be named
As one who loved in the end.
I was named. So, send, send.

Real in the beginning is acting in the end.
So death, which seems everywhere,
In deeds and thoughts,
Waiting, and always there,
Is yet, never seen,
Except where letters vanish, because to end
Love, we send love to where it’s always green,
Where love after love moves.
In fear, everyone loves.
I knew death best through hope, which claimed:
“Custom and ritual defend
The best of love,” and she whispered I would soon be named
As one who loved in the end.
I was named. So, send, send.


Image result for the lover swoons in renaissance painting

You made me crazy.

You made me sick. Sick at heart.

You put your smile in a dart.

Love thinks a lot. Love isn’t lazy.

I hope to never be rid of this.

Well, yes—maybe I do.

Let me go away.

Into the land of your kiss.

You made me crazy. Congratulations, you.

Survival is simple: Drink water. Stay out of the sun.

Be careful. Do what’s right at all times.

Don’t trust anyone.

But survivors don’t dream in rhymes;

Survivors don’t write rhymes for another;

Survivors don’t string their days with songs—

Lullabies learned from mother.

Forgive me love, for these wrongs.

You put love inside a letter

And sent that love to me.

I hope I never get better.

But has anyone hoped so bitterly?




No one likes to be beloved of insults.

No one likes free speech when something goes wrong.

No one likes freedom when freedom is free

To interrupt your song.

The news has a point to make—

Which, because it is news, is slanderous and wrong—

And makes it quickly in large letters

Before you have a chance to turn away—

Stay, poetry, stay—

Seeking better advice from your betters.

Old religions conflate loyalty, God and beloved—

In this, only, find the truly true.

Your lover came looking for you

But, you, an addict, wanted privacy—

You want this moment to hide from the last;

Addiction wants privacy—the privacy of now erasing the past.

Too much pain dwells there:

Hate. Terrible hate. And his love, of which you were hardly aware.




There isn’t anything in the Constitution

Or in your heart or in these inscriptions

Discovered carved in rock by a lost sea

Which interests me.

There isn’t anything in the Sunday Times

Or in a doomed poet’s obscure rhymes

In a dusty room long locked without a key

Which interests me.

There isn’t anything in the sad story

Told by art and dance and everybody is sorry

As you turn yourself into a community

Which interests me.

I do what I want to do. I don’t care

What’s inside myself. Or inside there.

I am the outward life,

I can handle guitar, ship, knife.

Yes, I know. The unhappy wife.


A very thoughtful person

Told me everything was physical.

The universal and the universe is material, he said,

And vibrates with song.

One moment his face was beautiful

And then ugly, and I found this very beautiful.

He was ugly because he was afraid.

He preferred Edgar Poe and whole milk.

He unsettled me the way he disagreed

With smart people in funny ways.  And yet he was agreeable to me

In a closed personal space; I never knew the personal could hold such bliss.

When we broke up I told him, his face streaming with tears, “you cannot worship me like this.”



Image result for beautiful face with malice in painting

What does it mean when I want to cry

But I have no idea why

And I can’t, and heavily sigh

For a whole dull and dark cold day?

The release of crying would be a joy,

My tears like a penetrating ray,

Loosening the gloomy air,

Curing the darkness; feeling saving feeling

From a feeling of despair,

My crying, like a spring rain,

A harbinger of winter’s demise.

Will my tears be made of joy or pain?

Will joy joyfully render my cries?

I don’t know. Pain and joy, there is a lot—

But then I see a face

Beautiful with malice—not grace—

And I know why I want to cry, but cannot.



Image result for death in renaissance painting

If the wise don’t praise

Heartbreak and cold,

Death, and getting old,

Who will? I count the days

From my beginning to my end.

Indifference will not make me bend.

A child in the womb not wanted must die.

A lover, without warning, turns cold

And waste and dark and gravity

Oppresses; the new becomes old

So death can make room for the new.

Who is wise who doesn’t praise you?






Image result for low sun in cloudy winter sky

More welcome than the summer sun,

You sun of December.

You simmer in my slumber.

Summer sun repeats the world

But the sun of December

Is the sun I remember.

Waking in cold dark,

There are no peaches outside my window growing, no lark.

The December shroud

Has made the crooked day

Esteemed far away.

I wake, and my fearful thoughts speak out loud

To no one in the dark.

There are no peaches outside my window growing, no lark.

No nightingale is singing.

Soon the sun will climb mistily into its seat

Where my life and dull December meet.

It’s just another cloudy day.

Estimation estimates summer far away.

The sun of December

Is the sun I remember.



Image result for chiaroscuro in painting

I have an idea for a sonnet.

I am going to let you in on it.

Once I share this idea with you

I hope this is all I need to do:

Sharing and writing it

The same: the dark, and lighting it

Will make the dark disappear—

A dark idea the poem hopefully makes clear:

My idea is not darkness, but darkness fled,

A light seen, instead,

So the writing isn’t the idea at all,

Except you see the shadow crawl

Down the page—the idea fleeing.

Light is the only thing you’re seeing,

But not as light—only in the way

It is making my idea (darkness) go away.

My words, dark, represent light;

My idea, wrong, couldn’t be more right:

The very act of writing erases

The bright idea my dark poem replaces.


Against our will, we choose.

We have no will, not because we don’t choose, or cannot choose, but because we do.

Are you a Democrat, or a Republican?

“I’m neither.”

Of course. Wink wink. 

It is frighteningly apparent to every soul how crudely dual life is. Yes—I mean “no!”—it really is a binary existence; everything in life is a series of 0/1, eternally.

This is why every American is either a Democrat or a Republican.

And why “being a Democrat” or “being a Republican” is finally meaningless.

We might as well say “One” or “Two,” and, as throngs crowd around One, or Two, endowing One or Two with this or that virtue, the crowds are hardly aware that they are only participating in duality, in One and Two. The “Democrat” and “Republican” duality is a laughable and impossible affair.

But “heating up” is what “discussions” and “contest” and “rivalry” will naturally do, as existence would rather be “heated up”—the world would rather be warm than cold. The force which gave birth to you (the arms of a parent or a lover which clamber towards you) is from an ancient energy—a rivalry and a desire long forgotten, but still burning in history and mankind: swirling, bright, brutal, senselessly binary.

“Meaningful” itself is an opposite, and so on.

Everything exists because of its opposite (the binary) and not because of itself.

The binary is why we never feel comfortable or satisfied—why desire and doubt go on forever.

The initial choice exists because of the binary nature of reality.

“Democrat” or “Republican” = only a further elaboration of hidden, forever branching out, 0 or 1 choices.

The most famous modern American poem: Frost “The Road Not Taken,” concerns an either/or choice at a fork in the road.

The world’s most famous poem: “The Raven,” wonders is that someone at the door—or not?

Betrayals—in love—the switching of sides, the switch from “I love you” to “I hate you” in lovers and friends and close family members—betrayals are particularly noteworthy—and similarly, the sudden revelation of love where previously there was none—these switching actions fill us with awe, not just because of their immediate social effects, but because duality itself stuns our very souls, and the secret is briefly revealed and powerfully felt: the terrible truth that our reality is in fact nothing more than zeros and ones.

We are only half-aware why, in certain moods, we don’t want to talk. We know that talking, in the long run, will be better for all parties, but we can’t bring ourselves to join any sort of dialogue.

In our deepest, contemplative selves—when we get in touch with ourselves, feeling content in our soul’s lonely existence—the dialogue, the binary nature of conversation, just because it is a binary existence, is what we strongly abhor.

God is the singularity of existence; a devotion to God—the one—is how we attempt to defy the weary back and forth of binary life, even as unhappy, binary life encompasses God itself: Do you believe in God? Or not? Yes or no? Give us an answer, please. In our souls, the annoying binary of dialogue is precisely what God transcends.

The greatest philosophy, the great pagan one which spread outwards from ancient Athens—anticipating Christ, clearing the ground for monotheist religious ecstasy and reason—promoted the dialogue as its method, even as binary, counter-philosophical souls looked on it suspiciously as “not actually binary” since its dialectic sprung from an apparently monotheistic self-assurance—anathema to the great thinkers of Doubt, awash in the worldly pain of the binary.

The dialogue which has a design on us is not really binary; its “dialogue” is a trick, and many revolt against the genius of Shakespeare’s plays (dialogues) and hate monotheism, the divine, the sublime, and all that transcends the binary—with the crass, wild, laughing energy of chattering monkeys in the trees.

The organizing police action of politics makes use of the monkey life, the binary life, the chattering, empty dialogue life, which implants “us against them” in the appalling socialized brains of the unthinking. The “organized,” the binary political animal, wakes up hating others (and sinks, swooning, even in love, hating others,) and hating others is the mantra they live and encourage; hate, which is easily spread, like a flame—vindicates itself, and triumphs, and spreads, and, alas!, grows, simply by being hateful for no reason. The political, binary philosophy wins, apparently so easily, and conquers its opposition apparently so easily, since opposition itself is its god.

The binary (I belong to 1 and you belong to 0) is an error which only love and genius escapes.



Image result for chappaquiddick

You can tell if it’s bad—you can feel it in your blood.

Witnesses to these events will write books,

Calling it fact, calling it fiction. Sometimes I believe them.

CBS is your parent. They don’t

Tell you everything, because today things need to be done.

The scandal sheet destroys your faith in mom and dad.

Or Christianity; innocent belief was all the joy you had.

Chappaquiddick was bad, or was it bad?

It all depends.

One glance at that right wing rag and your innocence ends.

Gangs come into government believing what you cannot believe.

It’s not belief. It’s muscle. To make you fear and grieve.

Here’s temptation. Money to do bad things may be really good.

The poet finds himself in the middle of a dark wood.

A scandal sheet is set to rhyme so the horror might be understood

By women in scarves. Those who are good.

Darling, be innocent and smile.

It will be okay, for a little while.






Image result for passengers on a train in painting

I can sum up what you’re feeling

Though you’re ignoring me,

You don’t know me, and you’re reading a book.

All I have to do is look.

The painter who can depict an actual person is rare.

Poetry has an even tougher task,

But I don’t care.

A woman is pretty, about thirty two,

She has brown, parted hair.

She could be any young woman,

But look what my poetry can do:

The worry in her forehead—

A few wavy lines—

Indicates awareness of former times,

Happier times, when she was a child.

What has changed her?

The author she is reading is explaining, as all authors finally do:

You are no longer young, my dear,

And there’s nothing you can do.


Image result for three graces in renaissance painting

I don’t think they know

How beautiful they are.

They are beautiful, but how beautiful can

One faint light be to one faint star?

What medium can allow me to see

How beautiful—Oh God—

These creatures are to me?

I would tell them, but modesty,

By elaborate custom, will not speak.

This is why there is art and love:

The Roman confesses how lovely the Greek.

We say with marble how a form,

Despite enduring modesty,

Can make the coldest thinking warm.

Do they look in the mirror

And find their own form beautiful and strange?

Can they know what I know,

Before I come within range?

I think they know. They already know.

Therefore, before I sigh, and go,

There is no art I can leave to express

Both what is, and what does not dare express

Adoration. All eyes and sighs are helpless.


Image result for purse in renaissance painting

Prose says it’s okay.

Prose says, “Tomorrow is another day.”

And prose, in its way, is always right.

Poetry has no advice for you in the night.

Poetry is the heart, broken forever,

And light and happiness will never

Enter poetry’s chambers.

The new erases. Poetry remembers.

All scholars are uncomfortable

With poetry which sounds like song.

Poetry breaks what is already broken.

Embarrassed love tried to hate. But that was wrong.

The scholars are now forgotten. Their verse

Was prose.  Put secretly into the purse,

A folded note for the ages,

Will now be read aloud for the animals in their cages.



Since she made an end to us,

Her elegant head looks like a large fungus.

She is too old, now, to breed.

She’s the food, and will feed

On herself, with increasing regret,

Hating herself, my revenge yet.

Hatred has made her a hateful monster;

And to think love almost saved her.

She followed me by lake and wood

And we saw beauty, and it was good.

But love adds love to what is already there:

Love found nothing in her, and she didn’t care.

We love for the first time and don’t know how.

She chose safety. So it doesn’t matter now.





Image result for clouds in renaissance painting

Stand in the way of elysium,

With cloudy garb haunting

Your classical body and face,

On the steps of the outdoor symposium.

Clarity is the rhetoric of your race,

Clarity from bitter centuries, oppressed,

Your rhetoric beating like a drum,

Around your outdoor speech, nature

Is complacently dying—

The autumn mist is beautiful—

Historically oppressed, your race,

And you, every oppressor, defying,

You accuse, and therefore no poetry—

No poetry, your rhetoric’s disgrace.

How can you express desire

Without a poet’s cloudy fire?

Your beauty fears beauty will come.

You stand in the way of elysium.



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