Senate (Tritina)

Senate (Tritina)

Not imposition, but welcome.  The way
cooperation welcomes coercion, turning the
tenor of the intended phrase, opening

the statement to interpretation, opening
a point without dissension, in the way
of politics, agreeing which fact will shape the

morning, which truth will determine the
next word and the subsequent, as if opening
the issue, claiming to have found the way,

one way, the only, but never actually opening.

 

* * *

A tritina might best be described as the lazy poet’s sestina, consisting of ten rather than 39 lines, with the end words of the first stanza repeating in a specific pattern in the subsequent two stanzas. The last line includes all three end words.

The patterns:
abc
cab
bca
The last line uses the end words in sequence following the pattern of the first stanza.

This first appeared on the blog in March 2017.

 

The Question is Never

 

The Question is Never

Who will lock the door
or leap in front of the jacketed

bullet. Nor is it four words
born in lust and camouflaged

with piety. No one cares
if you blink or continue

breathing. No one knows
what you think. Nothing

matters. Not the pen
in her hand or your finger

on the trigger. Not the crying
and the dead and the stains

in the hallway, the man
in the street hiding behind

himself. The question
is no question, but an answer

struggling to emerge. Never
formed, never truly complete.

 

“The Question is Never” first appeared on Vox Populi in June 2018.

 

 

 

Election Day Poem Up at Vox Populi

My poem “The Theory and Practice of Rebellion” is up at Vox Populi, nestled between Daniel R. Cobb’s essay “Democracy Dies without You,” and Naomi Shihab Nye’s powerful poem “United.” Fellow citizens of the USA, this election will change our lives. Vote!

Senate (Tritina)

Senate (Tritina)

Not imposition, but welcome.  The way
cooperation welcomes coercion, turning the
tenor of the intended phrase, opening

the statement to interpretation, opening
a point without dissension, in the way
of politics, agreeing which fact will shape the

morning, which truth will determine the
next word and the subsequent, as if opening
the issue, claiming to have found the way,

one way, the only, but never actually opening.

* * *

A tritina might best be described as the lazy poet’s sestina, consisting of ten rather than 39 lines, with the end words of the first stanza repeating in a specific pattern in the subsequent two stanzas. The last line includes all three end words.

The patterns:
abc
cab
bca
The last line uses the end words in sequence following the pattern of the first stanza.

This first appeared on the blog in March 2017.

My Poem, “Scarecrow Votes,” is Up at Vox Populi

My poem, ‘Scarecrow Votes,” is up at Vox Populi, alongside Jenne Andrews’ call for revolution. Trump’s horrific separation of families policy must end! Thank you to Michael Simms for responding and publishing the poem so quickly.

June 18

Will the center hold? Read C’s poem for her opinion. I’m uncertain, but have hope.

OPTIONAL POETRY

See the dust
encrusted with dry rock

and you don’t think
flood zone,

water scouring sage brush
instead of brittle wind,

but it’s happened.
Block ice slouches

in the glass, dessert heat
demostrates the facility

of state change.
See a lazy wheeling hawk,

think gyre, gyre,
getting wider–

do things really fall apart?
Or just slump forward

in apathy?
Define a hole:

a lack of matter–
evil is nothing

but the absence
of empathy.

Say evil is nothing, see,
evil is nothing.

The hawk flies off.
Say in Bethlehem,

oh, whatever.
Say a clear blue sky

as if it belies
the existence of rain,

and when that hillside goes
pretend to be surprised–

say it, say it,
it couldn’t happen here.

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