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The Journey to the West

Though we journey to the West We pray to the East More or less that's the way Each day begins and ends It’s a tale everyone ...

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Is the Reichstag Already Burning?

Is the Reichstag already burning?
I'd like to ask
At the next
Press conference

And how deep into these allegations
Of deep state interference
Must we all now go?

A deep state of what --
Would be my follow up --
Misapprehension, malfeasance
Or mirth?

Farce (whether of the
high or low variety)
Always takes us lower
Than we otherwise
Might choose to go
And all too often it
Ends up in tragedy


Please note when a world view
Unravels quite suddenly
Like a bandage being
Ripped from the flesh
It causes consternation
And pain but ultimately
May prove for the best
Having our nation's grievous
Wounds thus exposed
To public view may better
Serve to put any further
Self-delusion to rest





Friday, March 16, 2018

Kikayon (or Jonah's Song)





I dreamed of writing a great poem
Words that could scald the earth
With the truth but then I woke up
And realized no one gives a damn
About anything I’ve ever written or said
And no, no I won’t go to Ninevah

Why should this prophecy be any different
From all the others
Anyhow can one poem more or less
Matter in the grand scheme
Of creation -- I think not very much
Yet still I must find a way to Ninevah
With or without the help of a big fish
At least that’s what I thought you said

And then there came up
A great and sudden storm
When the sailors drew lots and
I knew it was neither sink nor swim
But inside the big fish that I’d soon
Find myself in
There would be plenty of room
For redemption

And always, always I know
We must keep on singing
No matter how hot it is while
We’re sitting under the gourd
Such are the mysterious ways of the Lord
Sending us truth that proliferates
Like a shrub springing up quickly
Spreading and standing by virtue
Of its own ubiquitous stem




Thursday, March 8, 2018

Heavy Wet Snow

This morning the woods are
Alive with the gob and smack
Of heavy wet snow that keeps sliding
Off roof tops and tree limbs 
Onto the earth below

Now is the time for letting go
Winter has just agreed
To let loose its grip
And the world in its entirety
Heaves a sigh of relief
As muck prepares
To take the place

Of frozen turf and snow




Spring Willow in the Snow

Last night she was
Taken by surprise
In the mid March storm
Already beginning
To grow loose and limber 
But suddenly she found herself
Encrusted with
A thin layer of snow
Diadems of ice clustered
Like blossoms along her
Drooping branches
Sparkling like an
Ingénue’s eyes
At the last ballroom 
Dance of the season

But this morning
She is resplendent
With a green aura 
Though around her base
Still lies the blanket
Of yesterday’s snow
Now in broad daylight
She has sloughed off
Her winter coat
And her long slender
Limbs are already
Aglow with the
Blush of spring

A cloud passing overhead
Is a diminished fifth
To her splendor
Yet taken down a notch
Her hue only deepens
The anticipation and
Bracing freshness
That engulfs the senses




Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Five Roads Diverged


Five roads diverged in the
Moment of my hand
And sorry I could not travel them all
And be one traveler still, long I stood
Undecided, until demiurge that I am
I merged them all into a single
Roundabout path that brought
Unity to the world in the form
Of a far more coherent plan


From the Extension Chord series by Brad Melamed


Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Of the Mani Pearl

Of the Mani pearl
To have seen it so clearly
And touched it so nearly
An ovoid rolling and released
Towards the lower mudra bound
Yet never touching down
It remains undefiled
Luminous and pure


Illustrated and illuminated by Brad Melamed

Sunday, March 4, 2018

The Dowsing Rod Universal

Today I feel
The thrum of electricity
In the near constant tingling
And intermittent spark that 
Leaps across my fingertips
And crackles in the air
I am the dowsing rod universal
With the humidity so high
And the pace of change
Accelerating the plot
Yet again thickens
To the consistency
Of a rich béchamel
But not yet nor ever
Do I imagine there will
Come a day when I rue
The discovery of the
Golden Flower within

From the Extension Chord series by Brad Melamed



Saturday, March 3, 2018

The Willow (by Li Shang Yin)


Brought to life by spring
Without limit
Your branches tremble
Without cease

As daylight breaks
I’d pay a pretty penny
To hear whatever words you
Would choose to speak

But your only answer
Is to continue dancing
While inside flutters a
Butterfly’s wing
And an oriole sings
For a taste of your
Sweet nectar


Even an empire falls
Short of the grandeur
With which your
Lithe body speaks
Though a shrug of the brow
Is your meager  reward







動春何限葉
撼曉幾多枝

解有相思否
應無不舞時

絮飛藏皓蝶
帶弱露黃鸝

傾國宜通體
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