Nocturne

September rain fresh linen
a blanket lain last hours
of summer spilling out
off the roof gutters
autumn takes a breath
before winter ice and cold
take the hills rip colors
from the trees red g/old
apples barley corn
birds soar into the wind
remind me we all die
regardless how much we
lean into or oppose it — I am
alone not without fire
or love long before the snow.

 

Rayn Roberts

Lyn Coffin & Thomas Brush Readings PoetsWest @ Green Lake Public Library

Lyn Coffin & Thomas Brush Readings PoetsWest @ Green Lake Public Library

09/14/2019 – 4:00pm to 5:30pm Poetry

PoetsWest’s features the best at Green Lake Public Library each second Saturday of the month.  Our current features are Lyn Coffin & Thomas Brush.
Lyn Coffin has published over a dozen books of poetry, including Human Trappings (1980), The Poetry of Wickedness (1981), Crystals of the Unforeseen (1999), and Joseph Brodsky was Joseph Brodsky (2012). Her books of translation include the Anthology of Georgian Poetry (2013), edited by Dodona Kiziria; and White Picture (2011), selected poems by Jiri Orten translated from the Czech.  Coffin teaches literary fiction in the Continuing and Professional Education Division of the University of Washington. She is reading at the New York Poetry Festival this year then leaves for Mexico, where a bilingual book, Verde Vida (This Green Life, Pregunta Editions) will be presented at some festivals. Her book of translations will be published in the fall by Adelaide Books in New York.   Website: http://www.lyncoffin.com

 

me at Cirque

 

Thomas Brush is an award winning poet whose work is found in Books: Last Night (Lynz Press 2011) Even Money (Seapen Press, 1988),  Opening Night . (Owl Creek Press, 1981) and in the Journals: Fine Madness, Indiana Review, Poetry, Poetry Northwest, Quarterly West, Tar River Poetry Review.   His book “Last Night” won the Blue Lynx Poetry Prize in 2011/

Seattle Poet Thomas Brush Wins 2011 Blue Lynx Prize

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Last Night by Thomas Brush
 PoetsWest @ Green Lake Public Library Features & Open Mic
7364 East Green Lake Dr N

Seattle, WA 98115

COVER PHOTO by Gwyn Henry

Twenty Common Sense Ways to Have a Tao Day in 21st Century America

  1. Drag your body out of bed.  Eat / enjoy breakfast.

  2. Limit internet and social media use. Avoid addictions.

  3. Be aware of the Web of Life, a Connection of Being, the true Web. 

  4. Meditation / Prayer helps. Clean up after yourself: dust heart; sweep mind.

  5. Practice patience and compassion with yourself and others. Be slow to judgement or anger. Walk away when possible. It’s usually possible.  

  6. Avoid vexations.  Do not engage with those who create them. Losing it hurts yourself & sometimes others. Keep an eye on the Big Picture.

  7. Moderation: limit drugs: caffeine, alcohol, weed. Consult your Dr. if needed. 

  8. Do something!  Move your body til you’re tired. How much or long is up to you.

  9. Work if you must, rest if you can, nap if needed.

  10. Get out. Drink sunshine. No sun? Feel the wind, rain, snow, the seasons. 

  11. Reflect. How’s the day going? Not good? Focus on the good so far; how can you improve it?

  12. Eat  / enjoy a mid-day meal.

  13. Do something pleasant: arts, crafts, sports, poetry, pottery, music, painting, gardening, camp out, go fishing.

  14. All social media is harmful & unnatural if it’s all the interaction you get. Touch a person with your voice, a handshake, a hug– Kiss, cuddle, snuggle.  If the Wild-Thang comes up, all the better. “Man is by nature a social animal.” Make contact.

  15. Disconnect: Turn off all gadgets for a set time each day and live without them. You can do that, you know!?

  16. Self-defense is not often necessary, but can be a part of life. Understand when it is & isn’t. Be aware of your surroundings.  Exit stage right or hide, jump out a window, confront or fight? Which will it be? Is it the best or only choice. Think on your feet. Survive in the twenty-first century.

  17. Allow both your head & heart in everything you do, not one or the other. Question the imagination, intuition, reason of others & yourself.  Despite the evil in it, faith in humanity feels and seems good. I remain skeptical. A verdict on that is not in.

  18. Eat / enjoy an evening meal, early hours are better. Don’t go hog wild on ice cream, but do have a sweet.

  19. Disasters, disease, accidents, crimes and wars will continue.  When one happens, see the impact it has on you. If it impacts your daily life, deal with it. If not, why allow it a place in your mind & heart?  Don’t overdose on “The News”. Take in what relates to you. Turn a deaf ear to malicious gossip. Leave the rest alone. If an army is coming, volcanoes erupt, earthquakes topple a city, ask, “How much does this shake me?”  If a real crisis is at hand, you will know. You will hear about it. Do not allow the radio, TV or Internet to control life. Break the Advertising Media’s hold over your mind and emotions.You don’t have to live in a world fabricated for commerce and control by corporations, religions, universities, the market and government. There are side effects to following your own good judgement: the risks are experiencing better health, peace and calm.  Exercise empathy.   You only see me what you focus on. What is your focus today?  

  20. Sleep well. Dream. Wake up. Dream it all again.

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Summary

Realize caring for others

is caring for yourself

when to help & when to

mind your own fucking business.

Cheers!

 

Cover photo by Rayn Roberts

Equality

I say with a sigh, blood is not nobility

count how oft’ the Red Queen cries

“Off with his head”, she hardly says 

anything else–  Power ‘tis said 

Twists ladies as men turning them quite 

 

                      Bellicose,

 

Blood’s no guarantee nobles will lead 

To better or worse shifting us either way

 

It’s red

                          with/out gender

 

We favor no crown, no throne, no aristocracy

We got revolution, remember, we can still march to the sea.

 

sun-and-moon

A sign protesting a recent North Carolina law restricting transgender bathroom access in Durham, North Carolina

Gun Violence & Other Madness

The cat chases its tail, the dog whimpers in sleep,

The heart skips a beat…

It’s not a nightmare, not a movie, a TV show.

 

Wake when you will, but where will you be, in bed alone,

In the den, your unknowing hand holding a gun,

At your desk starting at nothing?

 

It doesn’t matter—Looking deeply matters:

Unless you turn it inside out, look long at what you find

The mind eludes the eye of reason.


Recall the flowers of betrayal and delusion with merciful disregard,

Struggle all your life to save this dying thing

This beaten, bloody thing called love.

 

For the tail is chasing the dog,

The cat is barking in sleep, the heart is cracking

Hope is a Gypsy song rising over the ash of Auschwitz

 

Mad men rule the world—


And if they wake from a coma of hate, will they give a vision truth?

Will they feed the poor, give up peace?

When will your heart slow to a murmur and hiss into silence?

 

I want to say the cat is calm, the dog is happy, humankind is wise and kind,

But the cat is gnawing the cage, the dog is humming a dirge,
The good flower columbine was never a flock of doves:

 

Littleton, Kosovo, Dachau, Wooded Knee, Kabul, Santa Fe, El Paso:

Large extensions of the fist we use to abuse the children—

Where next the murder of the day, massacre of the week, 

Where next the World War?

The heart is failing, the heart is failing, there are no known donors.

 

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Parable of the Fisherman

for Sierra Golden

When the fisherman camped along the lake
an inner waterfall
spilled over him, how deep it runs
in blood and bone
the oneness of our kind
as if the heart posed the question
What then makes us different?
Not so much not even personality.
It’s extreme love and hate
the sea of emotions between the two
makes the individual unique
but the measure of humanity for him
moved more in one direction,
how much we care for others beings
no matter how they are–
It is written love your neighbor, strangers
love your enemies,
love and do as you please
but the man who inspired it later was a god–
The fisherman stopped thinking
took out the hook of doubt
sure as you or I he’d never fill that job
geared up his boat, brought home seven trout.

 

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If You Believe Everything You’re Told

Lightning can’t strike the same place twice, there’s a reason

for everything that happens

God’s got a plan

you were born with a spoon and a slap

Just like everyone else

You see some things 

others don’t see

some never see at all,

Seriously ugly unreasonable shit reappearing

Bad bent pennies repeating

Unruh – Whitman – the Night Stalker – Son of Sam

Adam la la Lanza

Aileen Wuornos – Cho Seung hui -The Zodiac

John Allen Muhammad, oh yeah

we fear and fancy our killers

make ’em Hollywood thrillers

they make us feel so sad so alive but we can’t

let go of our AK-15s

T’wld be UnAmerican, they’re so much fun for the kids

especially  boys,

we put meat on the table with ’em

like the Donner Party did,

They save lives

like Charlie Manson’s  family carving knives.

 

 

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Greyscale
I live in the Eye of a Hurricane.