Tea and Oranges
There is no new poetry, there are only new poets. Excited wild wide eyed innocents and morose maudlin mopers, alike and as if new, continue to splash additional tattoo-like thoughtful art ink letters (flotsam really), to wash upon the sand skin shores of blank crushed vegetable pulp. Hieroglyphics. Flying kites. Fishing lures. Bread crumb clues from wayward mind meanderings, forming words strung together, or scattered; painting pictures to resonate in our mind’s eyes, whose sole purpose is literary terrorism. Once arms are taken up there is no about face.
The telephone party line of life making a call to the imaging thesaurus of our thoughts, dreams and, crystallizing faith, fomenting feelings……………. Ideas, credence and beliefs signaled in so many curves and angled lines; so many words; so many pictures. Language. Squiggles. Star analogies hung on the Christmas tree of the indigo night sky; the prickly cosmic hitchhiker stickers giving them importance, meaning, value and merit; hung in the endless infinite otherwise vacant heavens with the moon shining like pattern baldness on a geezer’s pate. There is no new poetry, there are only new poets, guerilla word soldiers armed with loaded language, sniping words to be fixed together, reminiscent dots interpretively connected forming the images that reverberate, vibrate, resound, echo, resonate, explode, catch fire, create light, significance and substance. Boom.
Thousands of thoughts and feelings; these are heartset dulcimer strings that have always been a little out of tune, strum them; these are the fruits of our Johnny apple trees, pluck them anew like emotional fruit, sometimes ripe, sometimes not. We open our minds and accept the call, stringing the feelings and experiences of past present and futures born in pain and nurtured into comfort with the milk of fancies, desires, visions, dreams, hopes and fantasies fed by the world around us within us without us. Nowhere to go that we haven’t been that isn’t there until we arrive. Willing or not. One plodding, skipping, racing heartbeat hoof in front of another. In the beginning was the word.
An emotional New Orleans gumbo served up to our mind-senses is a flavor of what has already been recognized, identified, made out, tasted already digested known. Learn that we already know that which is not already known. How do we know not know? Learning nothing new, anew, somnambulating into a greater wake-fullness. Wiser than we think dumber than we look. Newness. Newness: the old shirt that we find at the bottom of our awareness laundry pile. Whatever doesn’t register we picture, envision, make up, visualize, imagine. Confusions of grandeur. What color is red?
Reading poetry brings to
Mind, the joyous gathering
Of sea foam, humid August
Nights under the sly Orion
Constellation, wearing SPF 50
And gossamer Shadow glasses.
Martin Block is conducting the
Orchestra on the volcanic shores
Of The Make-believe Ballroom
Washing your cares away with
Oil slick tones extorting all his
Shoeless children to come dance.
To be read again and read it again to fathom, digest and get intrinsic meaning from the words poured forth, spread out and condensed in bite sized form and fashion, tid-bit teasing surprised poultry into pausing mid-road to find rhythm or rhyme, dancing beach tar queen, smoky sloe eyed, sandal-footed wordsmith courtesan; beckoning, one step ahead of our stumbling ability to keep up. A treasure map. That crab stepping pirate leaving hints and allegations that whisper “I know and you do not, repeat after me, repeat after me, assess, dissect and leave no more informed than when you took up the task; you knew the job was dangerous when you took it.” Solipsitically speaking, the significance exists only as the meaning was implied and not as you imagined.
Selfish writer expounding Kindness
Compassion charity truth and love.
Cloaked nuances of sex and power
Hide agendas in shadowed rhetoric
Placate me not with false promises.
Come clean villain expose your lies
Serpents swallowing tail’s testimony line
By line X marking the spilled ruby blood
Spots at the foot of the umber innocent’s
Crucifixion turning into self immolation
Disguised as sheaves of sleeping grain
Prestidigitation of the written wordsmith
Now you see hidden meanings now you don’t
The ingredients remain constant, the only constant is the change, the only change has slipped between the cushions of your consciousness and you search for the meanings of poetry as for nickels and pennies to buy another pack of Lucky Strikes. The poet is the devil daring to mesmerize, confuse, tantalize, puzzle and perplex; rebuke him, oh Lord, we humbly beseech you. Damn their nickel dickering soulless word excursions nebulous cumulous cloud illusions; I recall cold comfort from cheerless climes. Mona Lisa smiles, stumbling blocks, stepping stones, a lead down the garden path, over the river and through the woods. In the beginning mine eyes saw the glory and now the expressions become another jambalaya served up by pensive Polymnia for Orpheus her son, who reposes in the dirt yard playing with rollypollies. Pray she slakes his mind’s thirst, satisfies his hearts desires, watch his soft lips repeat the food of words meanings: the moon and sauerkraut; for better or for worse and to Hell and back if you really care.
The bard then takes pity with meter and rhyming
next eases our plight mastering tempo and timing
Our simple mind’s eye comprehends easy relevance
Because truth be told there’s no strain on intelligence
As ditties likewise recited from youthful awareness
Reveal evidence of poetry’s magnanimous fairness.
Grown jaded and graying into ill-tempered maturity
still savagely take pleasure from youthful obscurity
words crooned hypnotic while on soft knees seated
sing song sweet narratives blurred lessons repeated.
And pity the fool who blind performs (when they can)
The arabesque that starts “there once was a man…”