sleep

Dream yourself a mosquito, find a way through, then bite yourself.

Dream yourself a mosquito, find a way through, then bite the sleeping figure.

 

 

I’d always choose insomnia

For it is better rated.

More wakeful time, more reason to arrange thy words.

To make your reader tremble,

To give him dreams of her.

 

She’s cool to touch

Like sleeping in the snow and waking,

But not quite.

To dream you go to sleep and I shall follow,

For only then we’ll be as one.

 

panic attacks

It is within our hands... It hovers over our heads...

It is within our hands…
It hovers over our heads…

 

 

Man your lungs, my friend, for here it comes:

The Big Swell.

You don’t breathe, I don’t breathe,

Yet we’re breathing too fast.

 

My pulse is racing ahead,

Whose body am I inhabiting?

I am besides myself with fear,

With fear that I’m still trapped inside my skin

My skin is pushing,

I’m being re-born and I father myself,

I have no mother and this biological impossibility gnaws at me.

 

Reason returns, and with it, a name-tag, to hide the fear.

The fear that in the Beginning there was nothing

And then, conveniently, came the Word.

Let’s hide together?

 

only darkness blowing

Can we step outside the Cave?

Can we step outside the Cave?

I felt the walls crumbling,

I sensed my being crawling.

I do not exist:

I merely am what you want me to be.

 

If ink shall tell the story,

It will not be my story.

This pen takes over: It’s writing!

There is no one out there to stop it.

only darkness blowing

To have and to hold

Therefore I write bad poetry

Rapping rhapsodies of representations, remonstrations, and ruminations.

I’ve been meaning to ask you.

Half-way through, I stopped for your answer:

To start anew, or to finish the question?

Perhaps this silence makes half of the answer.

 

I feel like water seeping through your cloth.

Did I soak your body in a warm embrace?

As the dry wind carried me away I prayed

That you’d cry and lend me your tears

In the river we’d flow.

 

Dialogue with the Bad

Got a black eye? Look with your other eye

Got a black eye? Look with your other eye

There comes a day in our live, when we feel overwhelmed, when we feel that we had enough.

  • If you’ve ever been sick,
  • if you’ve ever been tired,
  • if you’ve ever felt that the world is just not fair,

then you know what I’m talking about.

Bad is stronger than Good but we have to take stock of this and we have to put it in perspective by asking ourselves:

“How do we face this Law of human psychology, of evolutionary history:

  • that Bad would be more salient than Good?
  • that Bad would be more deeply processed than Good and so on?”

The first thing to notice here is that we need to work hard to maintain the balance because Bad is (by default) stronger so we need to labor more on the side of Good.

The second thing is to acknowledge that Bad is a form of inertia and ignoring it will not make it disappear. On the Ki-Merging-Path (aikido), we say:

This World is Filled with people who have Lost their Way, who Suffer from Mind-Heart Sickness

世には、道に迷い、心の病に苦しむものが充満している

Let us Use-up All Our Power and Explain what is Right For the People

我が全力を尽くし、人の為に正しきを説こう

Chapter 21: The Way of Explaining

説道

Doing the Right thing represents an active choice to promote Good, but occasionally we have to deliberately engage in a dialogue with that which is Bad.

What is the Bad (for us moderns living comfortable lives)?

It is the Imagined Bad.

Why do we need to imagine the Bad? In order to feel empathy with those who feel Bad:

  • with those who feel sick,
  • with those who feel tired,
  • with those who feel hopeless,
  • with those who feel desperate,
  • with those who feel caught in the system,
  • with those who feel crushed by the system,
  • with those who feel overwhelmed by their situation,
  • with those who feel insignificant in the large scheme of things,
  • with those who feel helpless, in the dark…

We need to engage in this dialogue (with Bad) and this is where poems provide the language so we can curse not each other, but rather all that follows (from Bad).

Post scriptum: Spoken after finding out I’ve made myself redundant in my current workplace and I’ll be unemployed from January 1st, 2016.

Curses (by Tudor Arghezi)

Cursed by the ocean, the tree bends in protest

Cursed by the ocean, the tree bends in protest (7 years before the tsunami)

Curses 

Through fields of corn and groves of hemlock,
The fugitives reached the wasteland
At that hour when the Moon into dark shrouds, wordless,
Sinks in like a bull with its horn inside the elements,
And my mind knows their mind:

Let the lush garden and the poor courtyard
Turn into a kingdom of gloom and clay.
Let the fortress fall in the mud,
Watched over by thorns and emptiness.

Let all the springs and the sea dry out,
And let the sun burn down like the candle.
Let the horizon burn to cinders.
Let soot and ashes cover the road,
Let it rain no more, and let the wind
Lie down hustled to the ground.

Let moles and worms wander errant
Through carrions of whole glories.
Let mice in their hundreds whelp in the purple.
Let bugs and moths unknown
Nest in the vault.
Satiated with gold and gems.
Over strings of violins and guitars
Let spiders weave their unsinging webs.

But first, life, sick with time,
Let it not cease all at once,

Let its ordeal begin slow and steady.
Let the air bite heavy, like steel.
Let the day limp like the leaky boat,
Let the hour be tardy, swallowed in time,
And, unbounded, let the second
Glide a ripple through its own soul:

On the sharp rope of eternity, let yours fray
Into lint and sawdust.
Let the gullet, hot with thirst,
Search for spittle to get drunk,
Let the tongue swollen between the lips
Lick the light and be rejected,

While the water from the plains draws together,
Let it slurp blood from the mud of hooves.
Let the vine grapes crushed with bites
Leave overripeness in the mouth.

Let the sky descend, let storms of shot
Chase you on the plains with stars in their whips.
Let the rock splinter in small jagged flint stones,
An eddy driving the fellows.
Begging for rest, let the ground prick them
Snakes emerging when sleep begins.

The death of the doe

Bleeding volcano with frozen tears

Bleeding volcano with frozen tears

This was written by a Romanian poet called Nicolae Labis. So it goes:

The death of the doe

 

Drought snuffed out any waft of wind.

The sun has melted and dripped on earth.

The sky remains hot and empty.

Out of the well only mud is drawn.

Across the woods, again and again, fires, oh, fires,

Dance in wild, satanical plays.

 

I follow father uphill through shrubs,

And firs scratch me, mean and harsh.

We’re off together on the goat hunt,

The famine hunt on the Carpathian range.

 

Thirst makes me crumble. On the stone boils

The thread of water seeping from the fountain.

My temple presses on my shoulder.

I tread as on another Planet, enormous, foreign and heavy.

 

We wait in a place where out of the strings

Of gentle waves the springs still sing.

When the sun wanes, when the moon glimmers

Here to drink, one by one, does will come queuing.

 

I tell father I’m thirsty and he waves me into silence.

Intoxicating water, how clear you swerve!

I feel bound by thirst to the creature that shall die

At a time proscribed by law and custom.

 

With a sere rustle the valley breathes.

What a terrible evenfall floats in this universe!

On the horizon blood flows and my chest is red as if

Blood-stained hands have been wiped on it.

 

As if on an altar, ferns burn in blue flames,

And stars twinkle surprised among them.

Oh, how I wish you’d not come, you’d not come,

Beautiful offering of my woods!

 

She suddenly appeared leaping, then stopped

Looking around with a glimmer of fear.

Her thin nostrils make the water tremble

In slippery circles of bronze.

 

Something obscure glinted in her humid eyes,

I knew she would die and it would hurt her.

It seemed to me I was reliving a myth

With the maiden transfigured into a doe.

 

From above, the pale, lunar light

Snowed on her warm fur faded cherry blossoms.

Oh, how I wished for the first time

That my father’s aim should fail!

 

But the valleys thundered. Fallen on her knees,

She raised her head, shook it at the stars,

Then let it swoop, bestirring in the water

Transient, black swarms of beads.

 

A blue bird shot from the branches,

And the doe’s life towards the late horizon

Flew softly, with a cry, like birds do in autumn

When they leave behind ashen, bare nests.

 

Stumbling forward I went to close

Her shadowed eyes, sadly watched over by antlers.

Then I flinched silent and white when father

Whispered joyfully: We have meat!

 

I tell father I’m thirsty and he signals I should drink.

Intoxicating water, how darkly you swerve!

I feel bound by thirst to the creature that died

At a time proscribed by law and custom.

 

Yet our law is empty and alien

When life barely clings on inside our bodies,

And custom and pity are empty,

When my sister is hungry, sick and dying.

 

Father’s rifle breathes smoke on one nostril.

Alas, with no wind to stir them, leaves run in hosts!

Father raises a fearful fire.

Oh, how changed the woods are!

 

From inside the grass, I mindlessly grasp

A small bell with a silvery ring…

From the skewer father pulls out with his nails

The doe’s heart and its kidneys.

What is heart? I hunger! I want to live, and I would like…

 

You, forgive me, dear maiden – you, my little doe!

I’m sleepy. How tall the fire is! And how deep the woods!

I weep. What does father think?

I eat and I weep. I eat!