Life After…Go figure

A Narrative of Life Outside The Box

Archive for the category “poetry”

Memorial Day Prayer

(I got to deliver this during service after writing it for Memorial Day 2014)

 

A Prayer
Great Ladies,
Mother of Courage, Tenacity, wise counsel and safe return
Mother of Blacksmiths, convoy-mechanics, quartermasters, healers and chaplains
Mother of the Earth, of travelers and roads, those roads that keep life flowing, those roads unseen that the dead take to the West
We give you thanks.
We thank you for men and women who for so long now, in so many places, have run towards danger
have run to the explosion
The mine field
the hospital tent
the munitions
The wounded or trapped
The civilians in danger
the snipers’ sights.
We are free to believe whatever we may about war. We may pray or protest alike, speak or remain silent alike. Whatever we may do or say or argue or agree….We must know that men and women have died. Let us remember that they died to protect freedom, and in turn, let us use our freedom to honor their memory.
Holy Ones, please take all the dead of war into your hearts and your grace. Please wrap the women and men lost in combat in healing, love, and everlasting light. Please guide them on their journeys. Please shelter all those families left behind. And please give us a lasting, living Peace.
LGK, May 2014.
Eleven years since the invasion of  Iraq
Thirteenth Year of the war in Afghanistan.

 

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Gilgamesh for the Scoobie Gang

Enki dinki do, what to do

I just can’t take you nowhere.

Enki dinki do, why won’t you

just frakkin wash your own hair.

Enki dinki do,

I love you

the way a guy in Ur just has to.

Enki dinki do

where are you

I just can’t live without you.

You know I worked so hard to clean you up

Until you stopped it with the crazy crap.

You know our bromance shouldn’t ever stop

Because you went and gave a sky-queen flak.

And man,  that’s a fact.

Enki dinki do

I’ll find you

If I have to go to Hell now.

Enki dinki do, when I’m with you

‘Know I’ll build that Zigg’rat somehow.

Atilla the Thrilla

“But we totally won,”
Said Atilla the Hun,
“And we had so much fun
I mean; we plundered a TON…
we picked up some girls
and big ropes of pearls…
We sacked all of ROME
We can’t just GO HOME!
There’s so much to see
So are you Kidding me?
And way back in Hunland, it’s too cold to pee…”

So they got back on their horses
And plotted their courses.
They coiled their rope
And then pinched the Pope.
They rode over the West
And slaughtered the best.
They scared all the babies
and frightened old Ladies.
No Maiden stayed chaste
and they ground buildings to paste.
And then finally,
At a ripe 43,
Poor Old Atilla
Cravin Vanilla
Settled deep in Manilla
with his pet Chinchilla.
And they say even now, on a dark summer night
you can still hear him braggin’ about his big fight…

Do I live on Turtle Island?

What am I?
Where do I live?
Is it America?
Is it Turtle Island?
I cannot alter the truth. It is stranger than fiction.
My Clan’s blood and bone was once of Ireland
Two hundred years ago, three thousand miles back
We were dying.
The ones who named themselves
The world’s greatest ‘civilization’
Pushed us down, until we died, strangling on empty stomachs
Until we went dead into the turf beside the rising barrows of our ancestors
In mass graves,
No rock cairns, no swirling crosses, just green stained lips from our last and lost battle to Live off the Grass.
Does the green of Eiru, of Eire still mark their skeletal jaws?
My Clan’s blood and bone was once of Israel
Saw nineteen hundred years
False accusations
Blood libel
Purge and hatred
No last names allowed
No trades outside the ghettos but those despised
No peace
Because the gentiles said we killed their god.
Because ‘the lord’s chosen’ said we used the blood of their children in our rites
As they burned our infants alive
For the twin atrocities of existence and disparity.
And so my other blood and bone left, scattering yet again, again to the four winds, across a sea of water this time instead of sand.
Too many of those who stayed behind
Became ash
Heaped
In unknown corners.
We all came here to this land
And we made mitzvahs and did great deeds
And we made mistakes beyond counting
We triumphed and lost, we sinned and redeemed
But among our failings was one beyond belief.
We kept ourselves blissfully blind to the dark wave washing over this land
Day by day
Tribe by tribe
Soul by soul in torment, in death, in endless opposition
To fading away into a none-too-gentle night of reservations, schools and obscurity.
Crazy Horse and Joseph
Eli Parker and Charles Eastman
Osceola and the Prophet
Nancy Ward and Sacagawea.
The People are winning. The Nations will endure.
Wampanoag and Haudenesane
Hopi and Dine
Ho and Makah
Lakota and Hochunk
They do not have us to thank for it.
Is it right that some see me here and call me not Druid, but occupier?
Is it fair that some see me here and call me White, not caring or knowing how many of my kind died as ‘great nations’ slaughtered us to prove we weren’t?
Is it true that nothing, not my love, not my faith, not my care can redeem me?
Can all of us go back?
Back to lands that could never hold all our numbers?
Back to ways that are no longer fully our own?
Our very survival has denied our passage.
So much of my blood and bone lies in this land.
The ashes of my beloved lie wrapped in the Earth Lady’s arms here.
I live and die with this land, not a country, not a flag, this living land.
If I were to leave it
My heart would never beat the right way again
My right arm would wither
And I would sink down by the waters of lands known and unknown
To weep.
When I look at a map, or the spreading breast of the ground
I see a great turtle stretched out over the waters
I see a vast and vivid continent rearing up around me
Living, breathing.
I see my future home, the only one I want for my body, beside my husband
I see my past in the sunlit orchards of my late childhood.
I see the land I’d die for, my only regret to not return to it in this life.
I see my home.
I see Turtle Island.
And so then, what am I?
And So then, Where do I live?
I know.
And so then, do you?

The Search for Color

Your eyes were different.
Most days I remember them
alive more than dead.

They named Color.
They were the hidden secret
of aquifers
Set deep in the coastline of your face.

Your gentleness has remained your strength.
Your laughter has carried your brilliance
beyond world’s end.

You could always cry for a friend.
You could always walk upright through the tides
that bent and broke the hale and powerful.

You are my hero
and you made me yours in turn.

Since your eyes closed
Blue has lost a part of its nature.

Yet I remain here
Bound to the journey
Seeking to re-name that which has shed the truest form it ever held.

With apologies to all real poets…

Western pioneer songs are not my thing, usually. Two weeks ago, during a bout with insomnia, I got “Home on the Range” stuck in my mind on endless repeat. I attempted to at least come up with some new words for it and this was the result…

Oh give me a home
Where the Obamas roam
and the wolves and endangered lynx play

Oh give me a place
where hate speech yields its space
to the need to care for what we say
(If we grew up and dared
to be respectful and fair
think of what we could do with each day)

Oh give me a house
where the tea baggers grouse
till they learn some true humanity–
not to mention the need
for Chris and Sarah to read
of course first tutored must they both be

(Chorus):
Home, home our country
where we all say that we should be free
where my Choice is my own
and it’s not one mind alone
or lack of it to ever bind me

Oh and with sincere contrition to Dr. Seuss…

I do not like to be a Widow.

I do not like it, Double-Ditto!

I do not like it in a box,

I do not like it wearing socks,

I do not like it eating lox,

I do not like it weeding Phlox!

I do not like it, no Siree

I do not like it, no, Not me!

I do not like it on a plane,

I really hate it on a train,

I know it’s not good to complain,

But honestly, it’s just insane!

 I do not like it, no not me,

I do not like it–where IS he?

It really stank, it stunk, it stinks!

I’m still discov’ring all the kinks…

whatever anybody thinks.

Night or Day, Day or Night

I do not like it

And that’s all right.

**This is a monstrosity in progress. 🙂

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