Tuesday, October 31, 2006


"October Trees"

How innocent were these Trees, that in
Mist-green May, blown by a prospering breeze,
Stood garlanded and gay;
Who now in sundown glow
Of serious colour clad confront me with their show
As though resigned and sad,
Trees, who unwhispering stand umber, bronze, gold;
Pavilioning the land for one grown tired and old;
Elm, chestnut, aspen and pine, I am merged in you,
Who tell once more in tones of time,
Your foliaged farewell.

- Siegfried Sassoon

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

"Locks of Hair"

"Locks of Hair"

I will cut your hair.
But I will not wind it
around my wrist, nor shut
it up in my great-grandmother’s locket.
(It is a gleaming, ticking heart,
longer-lived than her pulsing one.)
I am too afraid of you,
making me your captive, Love.
(With that,
your leaving
would make my life endure longer
than I would have it.)

I sleep.
I cry out, and claw.
His russet locks snake,
waving, crashing, imbibing me. Now,
his hairs choke my mouth,
in the way that he claimed mine
clotted his breath, when he
lay in our bed,
behind me.

Through closed eyes, tears still
swell to wrinkle my brow, and drop
from among my painted lashes.
Are you asking? He possesses my dreams;
though, in waking, I am with you.
He visits me, always, as a crier of cruelest
prophecy: that I will not love you.
And I wake to the smothering, traitorous weight
of having seen his face, but
having drowned amongst your tresses.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

"One Youth Dead"

this poem is an attempt at the stule of Wilfred Owen, a modernist WWI poet of immense talent at a very young age. I am attempting to visit one of his central themes--death--in a more round-about way, and also to mimic his use of slant-rhymed couplets.

“One Youth Dead”

Find her, made tiny by the looming rocks.
Clamor to embrace, like the weed that wreaks
its putrid smell of death in her hair.
You will find no trace of her beauty here.
You will find no trace
of a youthful truce.
You will find no trace, no trace of beauty.
At death, it escapes, taking youth’s bounty.
You will find no trace,
No haste.

The form! The form! Ah, her empress locks,
her slender hands, her eyes do look!
At nothing, nothing, formless being,
Time has sent her spirit begging.

You enclose your eyes in ample shade,
and refuse to look at the unmade maid,
hoping her beauty (her life!) be restored
upon the washing of the shore.
Ah, wash! Wash! She is no more,
and all her beauties were taken before,
before her tender heart knew love,
before her faith had took its leave!

Do you find, redeemed, her departed soul
before her youthful cheeks grow cold?
Do you sing a song to make angels come
to witness twice the death of one?
Do you sigh for one who has been so lost
because of her beauty, her youth, your lust?
Dare you cry upon her chest, grown still,
when war from millions more does steal?

Saturday, October 07, 2006

"Turn Back"

"Turn Back"

You have turned me back--
to a face feverish.
and tearful, with
the coming dawn.
I, who pled invincibility,
who bribed happiness--
for a moment's
dwelling in the

You have turned me back--
without fingers; with
only your snaking words,
whose venoms crept
along my shield, my spear--
and, lo, they disappear!
I, who swore--
allegiance to

You have turned me back--
I crawl,
resting, belly-up,
among the mountains'
templars, holy,

Inscribe me with
sonnets to Love!
(proprieter of death)--
and to Lust!
(mother of my dull,
aching head)--
which turns me
You have turned me back!
And I cannot go

My Newest Muse: H.D.

This poem stylistically and thematically invokes H.D., one of my new favorite poets. Enjoy.
(for more about H.D.: http://www.imagists.org/hd/)


Hang us, heavy,
among the leaves--
drying, turning, burning.
We ascend--
flamed brighter
than the orchard's

Cold wind,
smite us! We wait,
heavy, for the ax to fall--
for the burning--
and the woodsmoke
which clots
our eyes.

Dark night,
find us! Nude but
in the first garden,
or the first
gleaming, rainy,
golden street.

Dark birds,
We have died!
We have died!
in waiting for
a snow--
to rinse us, cleansing.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A Sidney Sonnet to Pass the Time...

I have been re-reading several early Renaissance British Literature sonnet sequences for an independent study I am taking. Among them, is Sir Philip Sidney's Astrophel and Stella, twisted, difficult, complicated, and unbelievable bit about love...

This sonnet is part of the sequence. It is speaking to me write now, through my writer's block and recent difficult musings about ethics and intellect, and the reasons we write...

Come, let me write. And to what end? To ease
A burth'ned heart. How can words ease, which are
The glasses of thy daily vexing care?
Oft cruel fights well pictured forth do please.
Art not asham'd to publish thy disease?
Nay, that may breed my fame, it is so rare.
But will not wise men think thy words fond ware?
Then be they close, and so none shall displease.
What idler thing then speak and not be hard?
What harder thing then smart and not to speak?
Peace, foolish wit! with wit my wit is marr'd.
Thus write I, while I doubt to write, and wreak
My harms on ink's poor loss. Perhaps some find
Stella's great pow'rs, that so confuse my mind.

-Sir Philip Sidney, Sonnet 34

Monday, October 02, 2006

I deleted some posts.

Against my better judgment, I have deleted some posts off of my blog from last May. I do not want to be accused of vainglory. I have never tried to use my private life to gain public acclamation for any talents I may possess. I am only able to write well what is urgent to me, and therefore close to my heart.

The Tiv of Nigeria believe that witchcraft, and the invocation of evil spirits to injure beings, can only be accomplished by those close to a person. I find that this is true. Only those close to us may truly hurt us.

I wish that stubbornly protecting myself did not mean hurting others. I have bowed out because I cannot rest well while inflicting pain on others, even if it means swallowing my own self-respect.

Perhaps my conscience will be free to write again now.

Sunday, October 01, 2006


therefore, I have notblogged here in a while...