An Elegy

by Wendell Berry I stand at the cistern in front of the old barn in the darkness, in the dead of winter, night strangely warm, the wind blowing, rattling an unlatched door. I draw the cold water up out of the ground, and drink. At the house the light is still waiting. An old man I've loved all my life is dying in his bed there. He is going slowly down from himself. In final obedience to his life, he follows his body out of our knowing. his hands, quiet on the sheet, keep a painful resemblance to what they no longer are.


by Blaise Cendrars It is an antique carcass eaten up by rust The engine repaired twenty times does not make more than 7 to 8 knots Besides to save expenses cinders and coal waste are its only fuel Makeshift sails are hoisted whenever there is a fair wind With his ruddy face his bushy eyebrows his pimply nose Master Hopkins is a true sailor Small silver rings hang from his pierced ears The ship’s cargo is exclusively coffins of Chinese who died in America and wished to be buried in their homeland Oblong boxes painted red and light blue or covered with golden characters Just the type of merchandise it is illegal to ship from the French by Monique Chefdor


by Srinivas Rayaprol Today I am packing my library in preparation to wander unknown paths. I came across a book that I found long ago in Berkeley , Selected Poems by Srinivas Rayaprol. A poet who received a M.S. in civil engineering from Stanford. Here is what an anonymous Indian critic said: “And there are a handful of ‘lost poets, the ones we forgot about’: Gopal Honnalgere, Srinivas Rayaprol, Lawrence Bantelman. ..” Now for a taste of curry, THE JESUIT . When I read it, I laughed so hard I fell in love. I can’t toss it away. I also posted a poem dedicated to Rayaprol by Hosang Merchant. THE JESUIT was an able casuist.   After a discourse (on various religions) he suggested intercourse.

For Srinivas Rayaprol

by Hoshang Merchant We spoke to the same Master -- Pound and Williams And with their masterplans You built your house of poems Elegant as bridges / cunning engineer Of mystic arches, subtle chemistry Your fathers fixed the grammars Of your tongues You soared with the flight of words Those to come after you Had the blueprint of birdflight But they build you a mausoleum Brick by brick So that your poems can sleep In dusty library As our women do in uneasy beds Out of breath... A poet too can run out of breath But never out of words To do so would indeed be death And cunning geometry! Poets also only dwell on earth.

And They Obey

by Carl Sandburg Smash down the cities. Knock the walls to pieces. Break the factories and cathedrals, warehouses and homes Into loose piles of stone and lumber and black burnt wood: You are the soldiers and we command you. Build up the cities. Set up the walls again. Put together once more the factories and cathedrals, warehouses and homes Into buildings for life and labor: You are workmen and citizens all: We command you.


BUT THE BOTTOM OF THE LINE by Judith Pordon I am an American. I rush to be before the bullet, as I push air out of my way. I snap commands, advice without request, involuntarily. I wait only briefly for anything. I comb my hair without looking, as fast as possible, then cant understand why my strands are haphazard. I brush past, my goal in sight, but you, who are you? I am an averter. My eyes have never touched anyone. I will rush to my grave and even in the tomb will be pissed, for everything I didnt get to finish. I am an American. I pledge allegiance to the clock, to productivity, to the bottom line. Posted on Election Day, 7 November 2006

God's Grandeur

by Gerard Manley Hopkins The world is charged with the grandeur of God. It will flame out, like shining from shook foil; It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod? Generations have trod, have trod, have trod; And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil; And wears man's smudge and shares man's smell: the soil Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod. And for all this, nature is never spent; There lives the dearest freshness deep down things; And though the last lights off the black West went Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs— Because the Holy Ghost over the bent World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings. More poems by GM Hopkins, S.J.