Monthly Archives: August 2011

Saint Andrew’s Day

This is one of five poems I submitted to earn my spot in my upper level poetry class at the University of Kansas. I originally wrote it in 2010 in Dr. Matt’s Poetry 1 class at the University of Kansas.

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Today is Saint Andrew’s Day, and I’ll go
home and crack a beer and throw one back
for old times. I don’t normally drink,
not anymore, but on a holiday
I’ll crack open a beer and throw one back
for old times. Today is Saint Andrew’s
Day, and I’ll hang up the old blue flag
and have a beer with hungry ghosts. I’ll
empty the bottle out, closing the
hearth shrine doors and sit in the dark ‘til
sleep covers me. And I’ll buy one more
good bottle of beer tomorrow, to
place it on its own shelf in the fridge.
Several times a day I’ll open
the fridge to get something, or maybe
nothing, and I’ll hesitate for a
moment, door in hand, while the bottle
and I consider one another.
On the first night of Yule I’ll open
that kitchen shrine door and retrieve that
bottle. We’ll both stand before the hearth
shrine doors and sacrifice ourselves in
honor of all that is traditional
and proper. Twelve days of Yule and twelve
bottles of black blood later I will
greet the New Year, with all it’s many
holy days, each with its bottle of
black or brown. I will be a model
of ritual observance steeped in
ritual temperance. And when the
Eleventh of November makes its
inexorable return, I’ll open
that kitchen shrine and retrieve a bottle,
and we’ll walk right by the hearth shrine doors
and offer ourselves in memory
of all that was inevitable
and unforgettable. And I’ll
hang up the old black flag and salute
it with hungry ghosts, emptying out
a battalion of bottles, washing
out the heart shrine, the doors locked tight
on all other days. And I’ll sit in
the dark chasing oblivion, to
catch it before the dread memories
catch me. The next day, or sometimes on
the day after that, or even a
few days after that I will go buy
a bottle of beer to install there
to await my return on the next
Saint Andrew’s Day.

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Filed under Learning, Right Living, Stories & Poems, University of Kansas

Walking With Granta

This is one of five poems I submitted to earn my spot in my upper level poetry class at the University of Kansas. I originally wrote it in 2010 in Dr. Matt’s Poetry 1 class at the University of Kansas, inspired by my summer studies at the University of Cambridge that year.

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The old stone echoes,
the veil of heaven dark and close.
The plodding of my shoes,
sawdust scented boardwalk
creaking in time, the ploshing river
and gumping fish, ruffled pillow
feathers of napping swans
glow in insect hrmming streetlamp,
flushing out like an alcoholics
jaundiced flesh, and I-

Foundering in the mirk,
this stave driven tradition
with glass soldiers floating,
shining like swans, and I
wonder how it comes to this.

Scratched in the brain:
plod, plosh, gump, hrrm,
existing forever
in one skull or another,
sky wrapped glories,
or until the light goes out
in the West.

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Filed under Cambridge Journal, Learning, Right Living, Stories & Poems, University of Kansas

Upon Seeing the First Fallen Leaves of Autumn

This is one of five poems I submitted to earn my spot in my upper level poetry class at the University of Kansas. I originally wrote it in 2010 in Dr. Matt’s Poetry 1 class at the University of Kansas, inspired by my Classic Japanese Literature class with Dr. Maggie Childs, also at the University of Kansas.

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Little brown pamphlets
litter my weary green lawn.
I cast my ballot,
though it makes no difference;
the incumbent packs his bags.

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Filed under Learning, Right Living, Stories & Poems, University of Kansas

N61484

This is one of five poems I submitted to earn my spot in my upper level poetry class at the University of Kansas. I originally wrote it in 2008 or 2009 while in Dr. Greg Luthi’s Intro to Creative Writing class at Johnson County Community College. The title is the tail number of the helicopter I flew when I was in flight school down in Orlando, Florida.

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I sleepwalk into my clothes,
khaki slacks, piqued cotton polo,
lucky hat, and cut down Corcorans:
Army boots, Airborne boots and hard,
sledgehammers for my feet.

The sun isn’t up, but Florida mornings
are hot, humid, a wet blanket.
The fifty-five mile-an-hour air conditioner
is useless at traffic lights.
Black tar, sizzling tar underneath
old leather soles, worn motorbike tires.

The city is angry and mean,
the streets its bruising fists.
Palm trees curl and reach
crooked, grasping fingers.
Concrete town, heartless town lurches,
chasing a numb sleepwalker.

The tarmac is a desert of loneliness;
aircraft shimmer, mirages of promise.
The helicopter passively waits
while I inspect her languid form.
Demanding soul, understanding soul, she watches,
a merciless lover beneath my fingertips.

Like a coiled serpent I sit,
a slouching knot of anxiety.
Switches click, engines purr,
and the headphones crackle consent.
Fearful wonder, heavenly wonder thrums,
our hearts thundering drums.

I melt, light on the skids and gone.
My heart soars, racing to catch up.
The birds and clouds welcome me home,
and we laugh at the chaos below.
Thrilling dream, waking dream of flight,
my soul a zephyr, awakened.

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Filed under Learning, Right Living, Stories & Poems, University of Kansas

Protected: Confessions of Frithrik Ritter #1

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Filed under Hobby, Right Living, RPG Journals