Thursday, February 28, 2008

Go for a stroll

I will post a poem in a day or two. For now, go for a walk with Sandy in "Whose Woods These Are" and listen to the music on her site as your do.

You're still here!? Go on!!

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Poem: Wandering


Worlds outside beckon
Sweet reward of hidden gems
Promise of blessing

Contentment washes
O’er skin that yields to lushness
Of new days in dreams

*Of news in dreams

Copyright SGW 2008

* Footnote: The footnoted line was originally typed in for this poem as the last line. However, based on the confusion in one of the comments to this post, I looked it over and realized a "mistake" from the original, hand-written version. So, the "correct" line now reads: "Of new days in dreams." That said, I am leaving the "mistake" as a footnote that can be substituted. Other comments liked this poem with the "wrong" line, which lends to the idea of the beauty of interpretive art. We, as writers, write what we are thinking or feeling in a given moment. Once those thoughts find their way to the minds of other people, they can be translated into meaning different things. I love that some of my pieces connect with people in ways that were not intended by me. Therefore, for those of you who read this piece with the "wrong" line, clearly the inner workings of my mind as I typed had something going on that I did not know about when writing this poem originally. Enjoy in either form.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Frida Kahlo

Today, I spent an afternoon with my mom and step dad at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. We had tickets for an early viewing of the Frida Kahlo Exhibit. This post is not intended as a review of Kahlo's work, but what it said to me.

Someone with a closed mind would find Frida Kahlo's painting as strange, or they might wonder why she painted herself over and over again. It takes someone willing to stop and really look at, and also to explore, the mind of Frida Kahlo to discover her excellence. In that, I discovered a major component of her work that I related to. For better or worse, many artists, and definitely me as a poet, are caught between two places. The first is centered on our ability to look at the world with a brightness of love, pleasure and wonder. We see color more vividly, hear sounds more precisely and can find vast arrays of texture in every aspect of the world. Kahlo, too, was able to show this through her artistry.

However, many artists, again including myself, feel pain more severely, too. We suffer in the knowing of how good life can be because the glory seems too much beyond our daily lives. Kahlo's pain is crystal clear in most of her self portrait pieces. It is her way of letting people into the sadness of her inner thoughts. I identify with Kahlo in this way, and I believe many, if not most, artists exist in similar fashion.

Over dinner, when discussing Frida Kahlo, I did not mention my thoughts as stated above. My step dad compared me to her, and the duality of both our artistic forms was evident and worth detailing here. I am hoping that my nature to be "cursed" by feeling pain more sharply then most people, combined with the heightened level of joy I can find in places where others do not even hazard to search, will ultimately lead to happiness on a level few could possibly wish for. This life, mine as a poet, has been a battle, and one that has had me on far too many edges. They say "no pain, no gain." Time, and my pen, will tell.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

10 Things I Would Never Say

I've been tagged by Poetikat to come up with 10 things you will never hear me say. Here are mine:

1. Gosh, I so love Oprah Winfrey.
2. President Bush and I agree on that issue.
3. Can I have some peanut butter?
4. Anybody have a smoke?
5. Not now, I am watching Judge Judy!
6. Britney Spears is a talented performer.
7. Gosh, is Dick Cheney ever a warm and sensitive guy!
8. I was working under the hood of my car.
9. I built that device from scratch.
10. Go Yankees!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Poem: Of The Waterfall

I stood on the rocks of Raymondskill Falls in northeastern Pennsylvania, having climbed a fence blocking my way. There I was, alone, only a few feet to the right of the falls below and a simple stone's throw away from the falls in the picture shown. There I stood, with poetry pad, pen and my thoughts. I looked at the amazing power of the falls, and noticed a trickling stream of water along the left-hand side that flowed alone, its own way, until meeting again at the calmed pool of its destiny. And so I wrote ...

* One should read this poem as follows: For verses 1 through 4 and 7 read normally. For verses 5 and 6, alternate lines from the left (metaphor) and the right (literal). Performing this piece requires two people.

Of the Waterfall

Power-filled, majestic waterfall,
Strength built,
In time spilt.

Eroded, beaten rockied walls,
Stripped away,
Years’ decay.

Busied paths, descending bodies,
All as one,
Since dawn’s begun.

Two secluded, gentle streams apart,
Trickle down alone,
Their own path known.

Who I am in truth imparted, ---------Flowing through diverted routes,
This is me,
-------------------------------Slowly strewn,
Least how I see.
--------------------------Paralleled, in tune.

Passing by the beaten track,
----------To be found once more in opened pools,
Quiet defined,
----------------------------Back in whole,
With peace of mind.
---------------------Having served its role.

Replaced to subtly coexist,
No persona lost,
Just water tossed.

Copyright SGW 1997

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Yes We Can

(Play with the streamer a bit if it gets hung up. That seems to happen sometimes.)

It was a creed written into the founding documents that declared the destiny of a nation.

Yes we can.

It was whispered by slaves and abolitionists as they blazed a trail toward freedom.

Yes we can.

It was sung by immigrants as they struck out from distant shores and pioneers who pushed westward against an unforgiving wilderness.

Yes we can.

It was the call of workers who organized; women who reached for the ballots; a President who chose the moon as our new frontier; and a King who took us to the mountaintop and pointed the way to the Promised Land.

Yes we can to justice and equality.

Yes we can to opportunity and prosperity.

Yes we can heal this nation.

Yes we can repair this world.

Yes we can.

We know the battle ahead will be long, but always remember that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, nothing can stand in the way of the power of millions of voices calling for change.

We have been told we cannot do this by a chorus of cynics...they will only grow louder and more dissonant ........... We've been asked to pause for a reality check. We've been warned against offering the people of this nation false hope.

But in the unlikely story that is America, there has never been anything false about hope.

Now the hopes of the little girl who goes to a crumbling school in Dillon are the same as the dreams of the boy who learns on the streets of LA; we will remember that there is something happening in America; that we are not as divided as our politics suggests; that we are one people; we are one nation; and together, we will begin the next great chapter in the American story with three words that will ring from coast to coast; from sea to shining sea --

Yes. We. Can.

Celebrities featured include: Jesse Dylan,, Common, Scarlett Johansson, Tatyana Ali, John Legend, Herbie Hancock, Kate Walsh, Kareem Abdul Jabbar, Adam Rodriquez, Kelly Hu, Adam Rodriquez, Amber Valetta, Eric Balfour, Aisha Tyler, Nicole Scherzinger and Nick Cannon

Monday, February 4, 2008

Barack Obama for President.

Because we need hope, new ways and new ideas. Because we need less divisiveness and dirt. Because we need someone with the promise of JFK. Because the other party offers nothing but small-minded frauds, belligerence and fear. Because it is not that American is ready for a black president, but that Americans demand a leader.

Barack Obama for President.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Poem: Opposite Effect

Opposite Effect

War to stop the “imminent” weapon threat
The mass destruction came on the eagle’s wing

A line in the sand; fight them there or here
Welcome mats laid out in invitation for the wolves

Last resorts promised democracy’s spread
Chaos, anarchy and tenuous, half-governments teeter on the brink

A surge, desperately in its last, false hope
Deceived into believing it would not be fleeting

Contributors to the descent into madness
We cannot cure or fix, but only perish in the staying

How many more must die for a mistake?

Copyright SGW 2008

Footnote: Around the middle of February of 2008, I have gotten a large number of search hits that have led to this poem, all coming from the area of Toronto, Ontario in Canada. I am sure this is some sort of student assignment gone in a surprise direction. Bet you folks up north didn't expect an anti-war poem regarding the U.S. involvement in Iraq, did you? Anyway, welcome and please drop in again!