Sunday, December 27, 2015

To Parveen Shakir

Where are you?

In the cool breeze or colder stars,
    stroking my hair, shaping destinies?

The moon's silver dulls,
  my love's ghazals indifferent.

Bright sunshine reads street signs
and evening downpours account for us.

Deep thought pliant as
Jasmine in a gale
blooms to tend this ache.

Friday, November 27, 2015


Of ashes spoken
  and smiles bright,

fleeting as snowfall
caught by light:

Autumn snow
  disintegrates touching.

Dusk skin shines
with pinched fire.

Tapering eyes
shafts of Sun
kindling flame.

Monday, November 16, 2015


Barbed clouds
do not bode well...
Yet her pale foot
  sinks genial
in grass.

Errant, without care
             for restive skies,
      she runs.
A gale crosses open field.
Her white gown lifts
lithe as Sylph's wing,
flush cheek
  nearly eclipsed
 by billowing cloth.

Boreas held
want too long.
 Those bright cheeks,
blood-hued to warm
  wind blasted
     are full with
             his breath.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

The Process

for JJ

Fitness is their canon.

Hair up, teeth clenched,
cheek bones whet
sheathed stilettos.

Water runs hard,
marking grist
down pale casts.

She scours it away.

Fitness is her burden.

Tears run sharp,
hewing grist
down flush cheeks.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


"...I have more faith in Southerners than I will ever have in Northerners: the mighty and pious North could never, after all, have acquired its wealth without utilizing, brutally, and consciously, those 'folk' ways, and locking the South within them. And when this country's absolutely inescapable disaster levels it, it is in the South and not in the North that the rebirth will begin."

                                     ---James Baldwin, No Name in the Street.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Cercamon(12th Cent Provencal Poet from Gascony)

Quant l’aura doussa s’amarzis

When the sweet air turns bitter,

And leaves fall from the branch,
And birds their singing alter
Still I, of him, sigh and chant,
Amor, who keeps me closely bound,
He that I never had in my power.

Alas! I gained nothing from Amor
But only had pain and torment,
For nothing is as hard to conquer
As that on which my desire is bent!
No greater longing have I found,
Than for that which I’ll lack ever.

In a jewel I rejoice, in her
So fine, no other’s felt my intent!
When I’m with her I dumbly stutter,
Cannot utter my words well meant,
And when we part I seem drowned,
Loss of all sense and reason suffer.

All the ladies a man saw ever
Compared to her aren’t worth a franc!
When on earth the shadows gather,
Where she rests, all is brilliant.
Pray God I’ll soon with her be wound,
Or watch her as she mounts the stair.

I startle and I shake and shiver
Awake, asleep, on Love intent,
So afraid that I might wrong her,
I don’t dare ask for what I meant,
But two or three years’ service downed,
Then she’ll know the truth I offer.

I live nor die, nor am made better
Nor feel my sickness though intense,
Since with her Love I want no other,
Nor know if I’ll have it or when,
For in her mercy does all abound,
That can destroy me or deliver. 

It pleases me when she makes me madder,
Makes me muse, or in gaping rent!
It’s fine if she plays the scorner
Laughs in my face, or at fingers’ end,
For, after the bad, the good will sound,
And swiftly, should that be her pleasure.

If she wants me not, I’d rather
I’d died the day my service commenced!
Ah, alas! So sweet she did murder
Me, when she gave her Love’s assent,
And tied me with such knots around,
That I desire to see no other.

All anxiously I delight in her,
For whether I fear or court her then
Is up to her; or be false or truer,
Trick her, or prove all innocent,
Or courteous or vile be found,
Or in torment, or take my leisure.

But, who it may please or who astound,
She may, if she wants, retain me there.

Say I: scarce courteous is he crowned,
The man who shall of Love despair.

Wednesday, September 02, 2015

Hypnagogic Divagation

there are too many holes on the surface of our body.
each one an avenue for invasion.
assail demons, bacilli, legions invisible to sight.

ultimately we succumb.
without we'd never taste glory.
small triumphs trim days with modest laurels
as a skull's pale rictus 
chides from every orifice.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Whispers War

I hear him.
Taut breath
rattles air.

Gasping, his
grave baritone gone,
walls shiver.

Emptiness a ruse,
for the promise
of peace eludes.

All hours
whispers list
like troubled seas
in the ear.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

One Line Homage to Finnegans Wake

Perché ihrer circehilarity, semel un agains Finnegans Wake il ne faut soha

Monday, July 13, 2015

Forget Greece, (Miner)Varoufakis Takes Flight at Dawn

Getty Images

"Now he will return to a half-finished book on the crisis, mull the new offers publishers have already begun to send him, and likely return to the University of Athens after two years teaching in Texas.
"By resigning and not signing a deal he abhorred, he has kept both his conscience free and his reputation intact. His country remains locked in a trap he spent years opposing and months fighting, but he has escaped." 
(From New Statesman, Harry Lambert: "Exclusive: Yanis Varoufakis opens up about his five month battle to save Greece")