Monday, May 20, 2013

a favorite Claude McKay sonnet - Futility

Oh, I have tried to laugh the pain away,
Let new flames brush my love-springs like a feather.
But the old fever seizes me to-day,
As sickness grips a soul in wretched weather.
I have given up myself to every urge,
With not a care of precious powers spent,
Have bared my body to the strangest scourge,
To soothe and deaden my heart's unhealing rent.
But you have torn a nerve out of my frame,
A gut that no physician can replace,
And reft my life of happiness and aim.
Oh what new purpose shall I now embrace?
What substance hold, what lovely form pursue,
When my thought burns through everything to you?

Sunday, May 19, 2013

two favorites, one mine, one a Countee Cullen sonnet

Trapped in a purgatory of their own conceit…
“The top of the pyramid – the organization is composed of Technologists who only pretend to have power, although they are only actors in the theater of mirrors.  When the mirror is broken they die, because the internal drive of their actions vanishes.” 
– Svetislav Basara, The Cyclist Conspiracy

Trapped in a purgatory
of their own conceit…

The web of lies they weave
gets tighter and tighter
in its deceit
until it bottoms out -
at a very low frequency -
and implodes.

It may be just a matter of perception –
they can’t undo their wrongs
for fear it’d undermine their
perceived authority –
an authority they think they require
to stay in charge.

Yet all the while,
the more they talk,
the more they lie,
and the deeper down the hole they go.

There’s nothing I need to go back to -
nothing to re-litigate -
nothing to defend -
and certainly nothing to prove
to the unworthy.

Just wait…
just wait and feed them rope.

Kid Cudi - Trapped in My Mind


There are no wind-blown rumors, soft say-sos,
No garden-whispered hearsays, lightly heard,
I know that summer never spares the rose,
That spring is faithless to the brightest bird.
I know that nothing lovely shall prevail
To win from Time and Death a moment’s grace;
At Beauty’s birth the scythe was honed, the nail
Dipped for her hands, the cowl clipped for her face.

And yet I cannot think that this my faith,
My winged joy, my pride, my utmost mirth,
Centered in you, shall ever taste of death,
Or perish from the false, forgetting earth.
You are with time, as wind and weather are,
As is the sun, and every nailed star.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

final NaPoWriMo prompt: opposites

We closet the true face (opposite)

We closet the face that frowns with truth
It reveals our cheeks and opens our eyes
This credit we demand from human sincerity
with whole and healthy hearts we frown
and mouth with single grossness.

Why shouldn’t the world be ignorant
in miscalculating all our happiness and joy?
Yes, let them see us while we closet the true face.

We frown, but o great Satan, our laughter
to thee from placid souls descends.
We cry, but oh the asphalt is lovely
beneath our feet, and short the mile.
But let the world remain in ignorance,
We closet the true face.

We Wear the Mask (original poem)
by Paul Laurence Dunbar

We wear the mask that grins and lies,
It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,—
This debt we pay to human guile;
With torn and bleeding hearts we smile
And mouth with myriad subtleties,

Why should the world be over-wise,
In counting all our tears and sighs?
Nay, let them only see us, while
     We wear the mask.

We smile, but oh great Christ, our cries
To thee from tortured souls arise.
We sing, but oh the clay is vile
Beneath our feet, and long the mile,
But let the world dream otherwise,
     We wear the mask!