Poetry: Silence is no Coward

I am strong, but I am tired, Stephen, tired of always having to be the strong one, of always having to do the right thing.” Brenda Joyce, An Impossible Attraction


I’m not always much of anything.
I’ve been an old white man for a long time,
a branded stereotype with good teeth
and a bad attitude,

apparently not supposed to ask for
some things, cuz I am old and white.

It’s okay. Perhaps they’re fucking right.
Equality is in, unless you happen to be
old…
white…
and have what’s left of an old hard on.

Others were (and still are) treated like shit
by white guys. Nazis were, are, white,
male; no fucking idea how old fits.

Some old men are idiots, non-millennial
impotent bastards who hate everyone,
and everything, especially women.
Stereotyped, hairless shit heads
with nothing to do
but make mankind worse.

It’s a tough world, but we can try
to make it better each day.
To make it last.

©Bill Reynolds, 6/13/2019

Look and listen both ways for real equality. At least, don’t be unkind.
Mind the gaps like lifelines with stories to tell.

Monthly Poetry Report – May Poems

I write two kinds of poems. The daily poems are first drafts. The others I try to improve and I post some on this site.

Ideas for poems (and for everything else) pass quickly, and my notes are usually insufficient to reconstruct ideas or inspiration. When I try to use notes, I either loose the true, deeper concept of the poem, or I can’t decipher what I wrote. Thus, I often write out a more complete, but still unfinished and unpolished, work before it flies off like a lost sock.

At the start of May, I was burned out after April’s effort and I struggled to recoup my writing rhythm. I did no Limericks this month as I had hoped, but I’ve not given up.

There once was a lady from Texas…

Here are the titles for May’s 31 daily poems.

  1. No Pass Given
  2. They Are People Too
  3. Effort
  4. Now
  5. Goodbye, John
  6. May
  7. Little Blue Circle
  8. Walk in Circles
  9. Off-key Birds
  10. The Charge of Thoughts
  11. The Birds Meet
  12. Thanks, Moms
  13. Drunk Poets
  14. Library Thoughts
  15. By Saturday
  16. House Guests
  17. Dawn of Promise
  18. Why is it Like This?
  19. After Midnight
  20. Retired Too
  21. Yes, I Drink
  22. Too Much Nothing
  23. Channeling Chinaski
  24. Euphemistic Bull Shit
  25. Man Up
  26. Little Mocker
  27. Monday Morning
  28. And…Um, but: whatever
  29. Ain’t It Funny
  30. A Rare Cat
  31. Waiting

Have a wonderful and inspired June.

Bill

Looking back to May and forward to June is looking both ways.
Mind the gaps, the deep ones can be dangerous
and the shallows hide interesting secrets.
Live, love, and dance; I’ll join you.

Poetry: Prisonless Thoughts

Freedom is a place
for minds and bodies,
one where I don’t belong.
It’s not where I am. I’ve never been.
It’s just not me. Can’t be.
And you’re not me.

With me?
Is freedom
no masters—no gods?
Am I free when I owe nothing?
Or, perhaps it’s something more;

I’m a life-long indentured servant.
Tell me what is freedom—will you?
Irresponsible of me to ask—but,
if freedom isn’t free, how can it be,
Freedom? Can you see?

Are we ever free?
Completely free, like birds.
A tree is more free
than are you and me.

Is there such a thing as truly free?
Can a society of people be free?
Or can’t you see,
the reality
of being
truly, truly free?

Ya know, it don’t matter to me—
we alone know
what it means to be,
or not to be
free. It just don’t matter to me.

Is there happiness in freedom?
How the fuck should I,
or should you, know?
We are a lot of things.
Free is not one of them!

© Bill Reynolds, 5/20/2019

Look both ways and be not slave to follies and deceit.
Heed the gaps for they may be the crevasses of your mind.

Dark Poetry: Forever Nothing

Part of me does not care. About anything. It hurts and yet, it dulls the pain. It is like a graft of nihilism on a life that screams fuck this to me, fuck you to the world, to the random meaningless of the universe. We are insignificant dots of nothing lasting less than a blink in the time bank of eternity. Dust. Then dust again. Can I love nothingness? Does the insignificance of meaning bring the refreshing quaff of the quiet hum of true love’s peace? What does it mean to not care?

Is that it? Dare I stare?
Is it? Are they correct?
AM I?
In the true end, nothing matters.
Is it all just one wee blip
unnoticed by a chaotic universe of
apparent orchestrated randomness
neither sweet nor bitter?
Are left and right the same?
Are choices and decisions fruitless?

Come to me, hold me, love me,
here now, today; this second is all
we have – no more. When this is done
we are finished. The dust of Cosmic rays
and light passing through hollow lives.
Find a good end. There is none.
Most are miserable psychotic,
drugged (if we’re lucky) endings
to whatever sufferable step through
the veil into the nothingness of forever.

Look both ways but live now. It’s all there is.
Mind the gaps, but don’t let them slow you.

Poetry: Unbleached Face of Death

Universal Death patiently awaits
each, forever it’s permanently there
welcoming every kind of life over eons
it’s always been the same, birth before Death,
if birthed at all, and some sort of demise
for both the stupid and the wise.

The universe knows each speck of dust,
each one of us for thousands of years
and will do the same for thousands hence.
We may count the minutes, hours, and days,
but in the end Death only counts the ways.

© Bill Reynolds, 5/6/2019

Look both ways in life, but we’ll not see beyond the veil.
Mind the gaps, in the end is the last gap.

Poetry: Mr. Bill’s Dream Logic (NaPoWriMo) Day Twenty-one

My poem challenge today was to write a poem that incorporates wild, surreal images. I was to use writing that doesn’t make formal sense, but engages all the senses and involves dream logic.

Well-known strangers speak
without talking, to us much younger
than before when it was me,
but not I; colors of unseen
monochrome images of unlimited
limitations. Chases by odorless fears
of panic unharmed—yelling out into
this empty reality of unfolding challenges
without beginnings or ways to an end.
Movement without effort, watching
as space and time pass unchallenged
by a pointlessness of futile efforts.
Yell out! Why? The dogs.

A colorless kaleidoscope of
meaningful meaningless images,
sounds unheard, spoken with
windless breaths. Fear seeing
through closed eyes, hearing with
deaf ears, brown hair on bald men,
run, kick, yell, stop, breathing.
Fight back!
Awaken,
let go. Rewind. Dream On!
Dream real.

© Bill Reynolds 4/21/2019

Is this a dream within a dream?
Look both ways for unseen meaningless threats, gapless gorges, and mindful mindlessness.

 

Poetry: Our Place in Line (NaPoWriMo) Day Eighteen

Today, the NaPo lady challenged me to write an elegy of my own. One in which the abstraction of sadness is communicated not through abstract words, but physical detail.

As far back into childhood I recall,
they say my day, my time, will come.
One day, perhaps quietly
or in some fitful mental agony
it will be my time to die.
But the bell has not
yet tolled for me—
soon enough—
it will.

Every pet, dog or cat,
lightning bug in a jar, turtle
or Easter chick; every snake, worm, or
ant; butterfly or bird, fish
or tarantula , things that flew,
crawled, walked or ran,
or just a sighting in the wild—
they’re all dead now—
I don’t know
what that is—
but they’re gone.

Every childhood friend is dead,
my mother died long after dad,
sisters both gone,
(estranged brother
I don’t know about,
he may outlive me,
if so, let it be).
I won’t know.

Uncles and aunts, one cousin (sort of) all
gone and others I don’t know about,
but they (ones I knew) are dead.
There may be some still doing,
but people of my memories
are past life. And this,
my friend,
is normal.

Some things don’t die, all people do.
Poets die (some never replaced)
but poems don’t.
The two most important
breaths we take,
the first and the last—
all the others
we call living.
That’s life,
Frank.

My sister would telephone,
“Billy” she’d say, “guess who died?”
she said, and then
she’d tell me.

When everyone and everything
I know of has died,
how do I know
who is next in line?
Is it I?
Or is it you?
Not if,
but when!

© Bill Reynolds, 2/18/2019

Know why you look both ways, otherwise, it is simply a meaningless turn of the head.
There will always be gaps but mind them anyway.