The Best of Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum : 07.09.11

“What's your road, man? - holyboy road, madman road, rainbow road, guppy road, any road. It's an anywhere road for anybody anyhow.” Jack Kerouac

Vengeance City (above) by featured artist and fellow mad one, Adam Yeater, one of over 20 artists currently coloring the virtual walls in Mad Swirl's eclectic electronic collective Mad Gallery. We know you'll wanna see more fo' sho' so move that mad mouse of yo's right over here and a-way you will GO!


This last week in Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum... we started with a little hide-and-seek, but only lost ourselves; we sat in darkness to sprout daylight from our own ideas; we joined a picnic with ants on crumbs, then ants on tongues; we gagged a bit on broken glass from the paltry fare of alien governance; we tried to eat still more, last runts in the run, starving while the big rats gorged; we indulged other appetites, him for her, her for freedom; all to end in full turnabout - we the food, love the feaster.

Just in case you missed it, here's a taste...



How come you’re so ominous and large?
What made you grow so suddenly?
And why are the voices, your voice,
most of the touch
where you plant your hands?
What made you dusk and sunrise,
everything in the mirror almost,
over half the footsteps and
the movement in this house?
Where did your threat come from,
the very harshness of your thunder?
Why am I dressed your way,
groomed your way?
Why do I feel like
the small farm
encircled by the huge dam?
You can burst at will
to drown me.
Yes, love sounds so sophisticated
when sugaring the tongue.
But what made you all tongue?
What left me all sugar?

- John Grey

(1 poem added 07.09.11)

editor's note: Now here's a bit o' bondage that comes without remorse or recapitulation. We all seek such sweet shackles. - mh



While he shackles her with the beautiful diamond ring...
All she really wants are a pair of plain white wings.

He builds her a house at the cape...
Frantic, she searches for a window of escape.

As his love for her grows stronger...
Her soul struggles to fly yonder.

He pulls her in sweet embrace...
While she dreams of open space.

To the music of the wild, her heart craves to dance...
But she is stifled under his adoring glance.

He indebts her with his fetters of affection...
Defeated, she finally submits in exhaustion.

- Saheli Khastagir

(added 07.08.11)

editor's note: Hmmm. To be the object of someone else's affection can be bondage, indeed. Must have signed away true love in the pre-nup. "Look before you leap." - mh



Flies swarm the opening to the crawl space. Inside, across the dirt, all dead, save myself, we sprawl. Maggots, wriggling their black magic, blanket the greediest eaters, the bloated kingpins who first hemorrhaged.

I, the runt, ate last. Am the longest to last. The meek shall inherit the valediction.

To die like this in the midst of rich new food...

Blood leaks internally. I retch, knowing a thirst no water on earth can slake...

Did we make too much noise? Too many babies? Neglect to hail the luck that brought us to this heaven turned holocaust?

If (as I suspect) the last: For this twist, on the altar of our drought, let rodent awe ooze.

Flies swarm the opening.

- Willie Smith

(1 poem added 07.07.11)

editor's note: Another ray o' sunshine from our poet friend, Willie. Just think, when the maggots are done, we'll all have perpetual smiles to greet eternity. - mh


A Glossy Coat of Guarantees

A glossy coat of guarantees
Provides no permanent home
For perky political causality.
Affairs of state could improve situations,
Would natural silliness cease, perhaps,
To elate hurt like shepherds castrating sheep.
There’s enough gold in these hills for all such fools,
Without their resorting to caustic rhetoric.

Eating broken glass, from time to time,
Sprouts troubles reserved for the likes of axolotls,
Tuataras, and giant salamanders, which, when
Imprisoned in zoological gardens, look
Longingly toward the tree tops, where
Their reptilian eyes alight on habitats occupied
By guans, hammerkops, and whale-headed storks,
Prevented from trafficking with sun or clouds.

Communal affairs would need no handling.
If congregants took care of “the wet stuff;”
Our imagined mansions, jobs, and food bills
Could shrink toward the horizon line,
Restricted, for satisfying durations,
Like so many artists’ wares piled up at the shuk.
Yet, our public managers elect to transverse clear lines.
We remain governed by alien intentions.

- KJ Hannah Greenberg

(1 poem added 07.06.11)

editor's note: After the celebration and the sunburn and the picnic and the ants... comes the real craw-sticker and reason for our moral indigestion. - mh



We can sit and look
At the excavated terra
Under this blisterful sun
Halfway on a dry pined terrace
Whilst the cicadas engines overrun
We will be bitten
By tiny predators
And again submerge stinging skin
One evening in the middle of July
Before a new moon comes
Ants appear
Hundreds fly and die dimpling
The surface of the warm pool
We cannot swim for fear of mouthfuls
Hundreds more lose their queen
And divested of wings
Busy themselves amongst crumbs
Under the alfresco table
Where the lizards roam
On a feast day
They dally in the glow
Not scared by feet for once
But reaping slowly with silent tongues

- Anthony Murphy

(1 poem added 07.05.11)

editor's note: After the celebration and the sunburn, come the ants, while lizards lie in wait for the sequel. Ah, the great outdoors! - mh


Until Dawn Sinks

I. Wait; coffees - no disruption
Similar, Sunday - almost aware

Black, still grave
Eye sand - smoke, she-think

Hate, staircase in a flat
Aware, bats flit

Fast, early bird online
Available - no response.

II. As the kernel phase pays over the higher salaries of my TV sister, the kernel phase of today’s contract to build a seven-level living museum for students, tourists, feminists, most anyone educated in education, the first book lights one entry beyond the last, and, as dusk slips into sleep, by the twilight of my monitor, resolve to base another sunk dawn upon one paragraph remains.

- Sander Blome

(1 poem added 07.04.11)

editor's note: Hail to all erstwhile patriots! Here's the day we celebrate with fireworks, little sprouts in the sky. While herein records a countryman of his singular patriotic duty, to start each day in darkness, work through dawn his kernel phase to sprout a day's work, a day's idea. - mh



I am hiding
can you see me
walking to the dances
where singers rejoice
lovers unite
preachers pointing fingers
to the heavens and hells
rings of glory, rings of fire
predicting the end
to everyone
but them?

I see you hidden
between the cold sheets covered
with her perfume, cheap, like the woman
who wears you around her waist,
bumping in rhythm
on the market streets
sellers of all that glitters
for lovers and losers.

I tried to write a song
but my fingers bled
black and blue thinking of you
until I asked him to write it for me
as I caressed his shoulders strong
torso muscled, eyes focused
on the prize hidden in between
the Crack Jacks remains
of sticky, stubby caramel corns and rancid peanuts.

Eyes closed, I twirled my index
finger until it hit the village on the border state
Thomas Brothers promised
with mountains taller and valleys lower
than you.

With four to the floor,
I'm motoring around the bends
up the winding roads,
a new place
to hide
but only from myself
and never, ever
from you.

- Joseph D. DiLella

(1 poem added 07.03.11)

editor's note: We all peruse the map of life, looking for a spot marked with an "X", looking for the message "You are Here!" We all want to disappear sometimes. But, we just can't hide from ourselves. - mh


The whole Mad Swirl of everything to come keeps on keepin' on... now... now... NOW! Every second, every minute, every hour, every day, every week, every month, every year, every decade, every every EVERY there is! Wanna join in the poetic conversations going on in Mad Swirl's Poetry Forum? Then stop by whenever the mood strikes! We'll be here...

Thumbin' a ride,

Johnny O

MH Clay
Poetry Editor


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