Some Poetry About Life–and some about writing poetry

unadulterated shit (Owned by Donald Smith of St. George, New Brunswick, who loved this poem so much he paid me $25 to buy it in about 2001. MY 1ST OFFICIAL SALE!

i sat beside a mountain brook
and wrote a book
and when i read what i had written
i was smitten by the
inconsequentiality
of reality

the words did not make sense
and the plot was much too tense
for the mood and for the tone
which had shown the anti-idealism
of surrealism

so i threw it page by page
into the water which did rage
with laughter at each word
till a bird flew by and read it
and shit on it

a poem of silence

silence
noises unheard
not one word
no peep nor cheep
nor footstep creep
nor bleep!

alone
no one home
but me
does anybody be?
i cannot see

to be alone with silence
is to be alone
in the universe
not knowing for sure
if anyone else exists

this could be frightening
and border on insanity
but not necessarily so

silence can be:l,
peace of body
peace of mind
peace of soul

just me
and the universe
in cosmic harmony

be

a ball of words

sometimes i wonder
is it really worth it
to spend my time on rhyme and verse
to curse the world and all its faults
to praise the beauties i can see
and then i answer
it is
to me
even if not to anyone else
for myself it does wonders
to calm a confused mind
and straighten out my head

moments like these
are ever so rare
in our galloping world
that to curl myself up
into a ball of words
is a pleasure
of uncommon delight

the miracle

pictures are worth a thousand words
but poetry is worth a million
so on i write
into the night
cringing in fear
with insanity near
breathing new life
into words as old as death

isn’t it amazing
in all the length of time
humanity has spent upon this earth
someone can still combine
words into lines
that never before have graced
the printed page

miracles

are all around us

if only we had

the presence of mind

to see them

epitaph at birth

please
allow no man
to be my teacher
for he cannot live
mine life for me

therefore
allow me not
to be his teacher
for i cannot live
his life for him

but
let him help me
where he can
and i shall help him
wherever i can

because
we are brothers

let us remain that way

following my desire

like an eagle on the wing
soaring ever higher higher
trying to capture sun and stars
following my desire

like a mole beneath the earth
burrowing blindly through the mire
digging deeper than before
following my desire

like a leaf cast off by tree
like a snowflake softly falling
sliding down then gliding up
seeking rest — yet stalling

so i live my life each day
to opposing goals i do aspire
learning good exploring bad
following my desire

enigma

why do i see
divinity
when everyone i meet
sees mere humanity

is this a cursed blessing
or
is this a blessed curse

like a near completed puzzle with
just one piece to go
but the last piece doesn’t fit
that’s how i feel

i cannot fit myself into
the puzzle of this world
no matter how i stretch and strain
this enigma lies beyond my brain
to remedy

significant language signs

bark
goes bacon in the dead of night
awakening my neighbours
who pound on my door
who pound on bacon
whom i see nevermore

propound a baconism
if you know one
(i don’t
sorry
i didn’t mean to wet your appetite
or rain on your purr-aid)

a pound of bacon
for breakfast
a bunch of bananas
for lunch
and for supper a steak
with roast potatoes
mushrooms
and you

you are my night
if i were a woman
would you be my knight
i mean if you were male
wearing mail
i might add

twenty-two plus twenty
makes forty-two
but even douglas
doesn’t know the question
from adam’s
garden of eve

words
have no meaning
but the meaning i give them
when i write them
down

and if i believe that
you’ve got some prime property
(canada grade a bacon?)
in florida
to sell me
but i have no money so
i can’t buy that

so why do i continue to string signifiers one after the other (as if they were words in a sentence {You’re Guilty!}) in a vain attempt to communicate my thoughts to some imaginary being called ‘reader’ (providing they get past an even more imaginary being called ‘publisher’) whom i cannot be sure exists and who has no conception of me (that was my mother’s job)

i am a person
or
at least i was
until i wrote these words
at which point
i became
a poem

and that me immediately vanished
vanquished
by the ticking of the clock
ripped asunder
by the tickless time bomb
squashed
as under the foot of a flea
who got swept down the gutter
of gravity

imagine the coincidence
the play i saw last night
concerned gutters
kate and annie
maggie and polly and ellen
(they made a lot of offal jokes)

is that what inspired this crap
crepe-paper pancakes
inedible solid liquid
indigestible
barf

a lunar tune

to crash wildly
through jungles
of green
grass
to chase wildly
butterflies
on dewy
days
changing streams
in the middle
of a
horse
changing screws
in the middle
of a
dick
to follow
after none
but those
you don’t know
to fathom
the heights
of green
seas

On Capitalism, and the RC Church

In my opinion, the Spirit of Capitalism is greed, no matter how you cut it. Exactly where it came from I cannot say, but certainly one of its roots was Ancient Greece, and another was Christianity. Neither of these roots started out as greed-obsessed qualities, but it did not take long, historically-speaking, for either one to honour the possession of goods and money above all else. Ancient Greece started with a polity, an organized society with a structured form of civil government, where all male citizens could vote, while women, children, slaves, and foreigners living in the polity could not. Christianity, which at the time was defined only as Roman Catholicism, started as an underground political rebellion in Judea, where supposedly the religious teacher Jesus Christ was co-opted to be the real King of the Jews instead of Herod. According to ancient history the rebellion was put down and Christ was killed. His followers spread out across parts of the Roman Empire, since the Jewish people did not believe Christ was a prophet from god, and spread his teachings among the poor and unhealthy. From these humble beginnings Christianity grew to overtake almost the whole of the European-influenced world. The Roman Catholic Church became the richest single entity in the Western sphere of influence, and capitalism, the pursuit of land, goods, and money, became its creed. Government and religion came together to make a centuries-long unbreakable union, with the rulers being (almost exclusively) male members of the aristocracy and the priesthood (clergy), working together to make the rich richer and the poor poorer. Laws that were made fairly arbitrarily still reflected the ten commandments of Moses (a biblical character from the Old Testament). The lines between political ethics and religious morals blurred until they were virtually indistinguishable.
Money, otherwise useless bits of metal, was made to represent value, all of it owned by the nobility and the Church for the longest time, represented power, and until a middle class started to develop in the Middle Ages, only the most exceptional, and/or vicious, of men could raise up from the lower classes to the upper classes. Women were chattel, belonging to the men, as were their children, and they took their position in life from their fathers and husbands.
Capitalism was still suffering its growth pains at this time, and was not yet a factor in the Western world, or anywhere else, for that matter. But as craftsmen began to join guilds, more money was leaving the coffers of the rich, and being transferred into the hands of certain groups of society. The middle class was emerging from poverty to monied. It was a slow process, almost invisible to the aristocracy. As for the Church, as long as the money kept coming in, they did not care where it was coming from.
At this point in time, though there was infighting and bickering between members of the aristocracy, and between certain levels of the clergy, society was still mainly group-centered. People were individuals, surely, but they were treated as communities, so-to-speak. Killing a peasant was meaningless to aristocrats, they made no real distinction between members of the lower classes. As for those peasants, or even slaves, there was little difference between members of the ruling classes. Some nobles or monarchs might be less vicious than others, but all in all the poor lived at the mercy or vanity of the rich. Who killed them, or stole their few belongings and food, did not matter. There was little to choose between one ruler and the next.
But those in the middle class were not only gaining in money owned, they were also gaining in distinctiveness. First came pride in being a craftsman, second came pride in how much they were earning as opposed to what their fellow guild-members were making. And certain guilds were earning more money than other guilds, and all these things started to distinguish one group from another, and one person from another. Thus individuals were gaining fame and or notoriety, and capitalism had the foothold it had been looking for to grow and take over our society. Individuality blossomed, and the groups or classes became less important, while the individual grew in importance. And the Church, no longer a monopoly, but still the most powerful single entity in the world, praised the individual. Its monetary base grew exponentially, from classes of people, to groups of people, and now to people themselves, apart from almost all others. (Families, as in the nuclear family, would give as a group, but the group was small, and was guaranteed to create more individuals, and then more family groups. Jumping ahead for a moment, when the Church saw that planned family size was looming on the horizon, when it became possible to actively prevent pregnancies, and then to stop pregnancies, the Church responded quickly by preaching against the preventing of lives, or the ending of lives before birth, so that the number of their adherents would continue to increase, thus keeping the money flowing in. What the Church did not foresee was that ultimately this move would drive more people away from the Church than it provided, but in for an ounce, in for a ton. The Church cannot suddenly break faith with their adherents by proclaiming the advisability of planned families, of the use of contraceptives, or the legalizing of abortions within the religious laws. What was done can never be undone!)
I quote, “capitalism was ‘the most fateful power in our modern life’. More specifically, it controlled and generated modern [culture], the code of values by which people lived in the 20th-century [European-based world]–some ideas of Max Weber. I can agree with these ideas to a point, capitalism certainly had a huge effect on our present Western culture. But when he says something like “public behaviour was cool, reserved, hard and sober, governed by strict personal self-control” I think he goes too far. There are so many laws, secular and religious, that govern self-control that few individuals have the opportunity, or desire, to decide what personal self-control is. There are those (whom we call criminals) who deliberately break such laws of conduct, and there are those, whom we call mentally ill, whose inability to cope with the life required of them by capitalism literally cause them to lose their self-control, and then there are the few, known in psychological circles as self-empowered or self-actualized (see Abraham Maslow), who demonstrate self-control totally on their terms without advice from any laws, but I don’t see any of these groups or quasi-groups exercising hard and sober personal self-control, except possibly the self-empowered.
Capitalism is a lot of things, few of them good for humanity or for life itself, but it is not a power to itself, not in my mind. But, I could be wrong…