Spoils of War

In Lithuania
Pillaging YIVO
For artifacts
Of a lost race

Plus jamais
Nicht Einmal
Never again

Words spoken late
Sincere this time?
Might makes right
They were evil

Der Sieger wird immer der Richter
und der Besiegte stets der Angeklagte sein
The victor will always be the judge,
and the vanquished the accused

Beaded moccasins
Beautifully displayed
Cleansed of context
The rancor of the ghosts
Of their former owners

Hobnail shoes
Piled like potatoes
Harvest of Horror
Black and white photos
Each pair was a person

We can't understand
But we can try
La seule pechée
C'est de s'en foutre
The only sin
Is not to care

If they had won
The shoes, clean
Neatly arranged
Hebrew letters behind
Toras, shawls,
Yarmulke, terfillin

How these people lived
Now they are ghosts
It had nothing to do with us

(4/19)  NaPoWriMo


The Cymotrichous Terpa

Every day I ask her what she's wearing
So that she can seem more real
She always wears green
We meditate together
As well as other things

I try to remember to take her running
She often runs me ragged
I thought I would throw up
A few times atop the Hello Walk

I thought that I should draw her
She told me to think of her
Each time I hold a pen

She sits in the passenger seat
Tells me what's wrong with my thinking
She's really the one who's driving

She is my glunk
She's there even when I forget her
She can't be unthunk
She smacks me upside the head
So that I not forget
To not try to do everything myself

She loudly slurps her miso shio
And the raw egg atop her rice
Her chopsticks click out a tattoo
On her cha wan, her little bowl
with the character kami on it

That's her preferred flair
On the ass of her sweatpants
On a pendant, on a ring
On her jacket, hoodie, or T-shirt
Or any props or bling

An unassuming character
Unless you know what it means
She is my avatar
My connection to the infinite

At bottom, I am a mystic
Always seeking intimacy with G-d

(4/18)  NaPoWriMo


Why do my hands shake?

Have I drunk too much coffee?
Or not enough?
Have I forgotten to take my meds?
Have I forgotten that I took my meds,
And taken too much?
Did I eat a good lunch?

Or am I just tired?
Or am I nervous?

Is it post-coital languor?
Hey, it could happen

It's not great that my hands are shaking
At least I'm not hung over

Maybe for once I can say
That I'm doing the next right thing

Not making excuses like
"Everybody else does it"
"I'm not taking all that much"
"I can handle it"

Maybe I've finally given up
Trying to handle it
Gauging how much I take
Worrying about what everybody else does

As far as I know
I'm doing the best I can
To stay on the right track

Maybe I'm just getting old
Hey, it could happen.

(4/17)  NaPoWriMo


Ponzinomics and ZPG

Such a hopeful article! I read what I've been saying for years: economists are idiots and need to get off their duffs and develop a ZPG model instead of wringing their hands about declining population growth rates, which are of course a Very Good Thing. Implications are that most people (women, e.g., c.f. 30% of Japanese women) will never have children, which, if you know "most people" is a Very Good Thing. Most people should never even think about having kids, and the culture and economy needs to support that idea. Having children will become an unusual thing and young people will become an unusual thing (Hollywood is beginning to reflect this).  Retirement probably will, too, so stay healthy since no more armies of young people to push our fat, IV-punctured asses around anymore.

Ponzi linked to overpopulation. Rather prosaic. That's what we call "math".  I wish economists understood it better.

Sent from my iPhone

On Apr 13, 2013, at 7:27 PM, Aaron Ritchey <oranu.ren@gmail.com> wrote:

> The_Ren shared a link with you from iReddit (http://reddit.com/iphone):
> http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2013/04/is-the-entire-economy-a-ponzi-scheme.html
> "The Entire Economy Is a Ponzi Scheme"
> there's also a discussion going on here:
> http://reddit.com/comments/1c9x0h

I hope that declining populations don't lead to pram-pushers becoming even more smug than they already are, but maybe instead subjected to the same kind of questioning social scrutiny to which other non-conformist groups always have been.


Où sont-elles?

Les demoiselles, où sont-elles?
Où sont-elles, les demoiselles?

Les filles, les filles
Où est-ce qu'elles sont parties?
Où est-ce qu'elles sont parties, les filles?

Les mufes, les mufes
Est-ce qu'elles ont fait «pouf»?
Est-ce qu'elles ont fait «pouf», les mufes?

(4/16) NaPoWriMo

The Indifferent Vampiress

The crack, she knew
She watched it even
The hole in the urn
The vessel containing
That which was to be
Our lifelong love affair

She saw the leak
As over the years
I filled this barrel
With my own blood
But it all drained away
By some unseen crevice

This precious fluid
Her source of sustenance
Why mistreat it so?
Like it had no limit?
Now I am sick
And can bleed no more

(4/15)  NaPoWriMo


Divorcee's Litany

I will not marry
Marriage trades the little death
For total annihilation
I will face my marriage
It will pass over me and through me
Only I will remain

(4/14)  NaPoWriMo

離婚届 俳句


(4/13)  NaPoWriMo

Before Photography

How did people mate
before the photograph?
Before television,
how did we
know each other
value each other
know how to value one another?
How many betrothals were crushed
with disappointment
on first meeting?

(4/12) NaPoWriMo

The Council of Noumea

The Council of Noumea
Who is in, who is out?
Choosing the canon
Who is qualified to do it?
To decide the fate of the world
Does the council have a face?
Which books, which writers
Shall we consider?
Dissidence, dissent, factionalism
The apocrypha

(4/11)  NaPoWriMo

Aggressive Pseudo-Intellectualism

aggressive pseudo-intellectualism
the merest ripple of questioning
and a cacophony of too much protest
in defense of misty bastions

aggressive pseudo-intellectualism
the suggestion of undeserved accolades
provokes a flurry of big words
of status quo apologies

aggressive pseudo-intellectualism
confusing the value of fighting
with the value of being able to fight
reveal your barbs, Lao Tsu cringes

Why aspire, why pretend
To be an intellectual?
fear the specter of honest work?
others' false esteem will not save you

aggressive pseudo-intellectualism
once you let go honesty
fairness is the next to go
what price vanity?

(4/10) NaPoWriMo

Truth & Lies I

Eating a can of beans
Reading the label
Like an ancient, undiscovered text
Never read by anyone before
My grandfather's name for dupery
Starkly real, yet obscure
Why is that thing here?
What goes in comes out

(4/9)  NaPoWriMo


Pink Cloud Number 9

Soiled T-Shirt
Unshaven face
Seventy pounds overweight
Sandal feet
Reek of cigarettes
Shaggy hair
Haggard expression

To come to your boardrooms
To your keyboards
To your disco parties
To your gourmet meals
To your glamorous women
To your tailored suits
To your current events
To your polyglot banter
To your fancy cars
To your elegant shops

All this and more
That I can't remember or imagine
And which even when I was healthy
Still made me anxious
Back when I was suicidally depressed
Only part of the time.

(4/8) NaPoWriMo

Madonna & Magdalena

The mother and the whore
Two sides of femininity
The Western Yin and Yang
I want a woman
Who is just herself
Do we even have a name
For what that might look like?

(4/7)  NaPoWriMo


La Fleuve du Temps

L'inévitabilité de la mort
Presse sur l'ésprit
Lors des moments de joie

Le passé ne reviendra plus jamais
Tous les matins du monde
Ne veillent qu'une fois

Tout ce que j'ai, je suis
Ne disparaîtra dans un futur quelconque
Ce disparaîsse maintenant

L'actuel coule dans le néant
Avec chaque sonnée du clocher
Aucun moment ne reviendra plus

Il ne faut pas faire ni plus vite ni mieux
Mais plustôt croire en Dieu
Et accepter les choses comme elles sont.

(4/6)  NaPoWriMo


Venus (German Tongue-Twister)

Hovering in the vacuum over Venus
A virile and very vivacious visitor
Vexes a venerable Venetian ventriloquist
To the verge of violence
Via a veritable vortex
Of vapid, voluminous verbiage
On the virtues of vitreous vegetable vitamins
Vis à vis various vicious, virulent viruses
While viewing verdant virgins
Vivisecting vomiting vile vermin
On a vicarious voyage of adventure through the vast void

(4/5) NaPoWriMo

German Tongue-Twister I

Happy Birthday, Hugo Fujioka Dearien! お誕生日おめでとう藤岡悠悟君!!

A tongue-twister for native German learners of English:

A weary, wary, white woman wishes for worthwhile work while weaning a wailing, whining wayward waif between the waxing and waning of a World War's whackiness.

NaPoWriMo (4/4)


Throwing Bowls II

Il n'y a pas du bol
I want to be bowled over
The clay, the mud, the earth
I must knead it
To prepare it for the process
Like in life, I am lazy
In the selection and preparation
I plan to work it out on the wheel

The clay is my master
I am the clay
The wheel is our arena
My spiritual centeredness
Mirrored on the wheel
Everything builds on this
From here there is no recovery
There is only starting over

I open, my first impression
Get to the bottom of things
Put my foot down
The clay, the wheel and I
Argue over shape, over form
My vague notions shot down as impractical
My halting visions thrown out

A higher power decides
How the bowl will turn out
My job is just to do the work
I pull and pull
I must go all the way to the edge each time
Half-measures will not work here

How much slip and water to use?
Only I can decide
I try to get the curve of the bottom right
Is the foot thick enough?
Are the walls as thin as I want them?

The fear of overworking it wins out
I stop
I decide how to alter it
Decorate it
The dance is over
I cut it from the wheel
Each step has a beginning and an ending
Each time a new discovery

The bowls I threw
Now I trim to find out
How well I threw their feet the last time

A final touch, I wet my finger
And throw a smooth edge on the foot
I have given you all I can give
Next time we meet, glaze
And then at your graduation
The cone 10 kiln
You will be as you were meant to be
Not as I meant you to be

(4/3)  April is National Poetry Writing Month

Ice Maker

Ice maker, ice maker
Make me some ice
All cold and nice
Cube-shaped like dice

Ice maker, ice maker
Make me some ice
So I can have a glass of tea

(to the tune of "Matchmaker" from The Fiddler on the Roof)

(4/2)  NaPoWriMo

Throwing Bowls I

Cut off a chunk of clay
Knead it to get out the air bubbles
You can slice it in half to check
Slam it onto the center of the wheel
Get the wheel spinning, wet your hands
And center the clay with the heels of your hands
Up, up, nice and narrow
Then down, down into a big dome
Press your finger into it, towards the center
Open it up into a squat cylinder
If you did your centering well
The walls should be all even
Did I tell you?
Don't push your finger all the way down
Or your bowl will have no bottom, no foot
Now, we throw
One hand in, one hand out
Knuckles on the outside
Or both hands praying upside-down
Start at the bottom
Press fingers together
Clay narrows, lump moves just above
Keep pressure, follow the lump up
Did I tell you?
Your hands must be slick
Clay with water is slip
It coats your hands like oil
Greases the wheels of creativity

(4/1) April is National Poetry Writing Month