Tuesday, August 31, 2021

The Frantic Dance of Being

—Poetry and Photos by Joyce Odam, Sacramento, CA


In the red horse dream, there is no fear;
they fly—over the small village
that holds them away from the sky.

In the dream, the red horse
is afire with muscled energy and light,
with the love of flying,

and the man looks backward—
backward—to where
the night is too slow to stop them.

In the dream, the boy is the man,
gripping his knees to the horse
and locking one hand into its mane;

the horse has no wings, but they fly
into another waking and whatever
follows is too slow. They escape.
About Poetry

One humid August night the moon hung
on a string held by a single star
in a sky gone suddenly black.

The night felt as though
all the fight had gone out of it—
the day so long and quarrelsome.

The tired moon hung—
half a moon—facing homeward
as we drove in our quiet car

in the direction it pointed,
over the quiet freeway—
it was that late.

The hot night shone
as though swept clean of something.
Our talk was slow,

as though even this late hour
dwindled out of enough meaning
to go any further with words.

“Is it all
about poetry?”
one of us asked. And one of us said,

“Yes.” And one of us said, “No.”
And the mobile moon
did not sway—not even a little bit.
The Blue Shadow


pensive as stone—
against a muted wall,
the winter light surrounding you,

your massive wings at rest—
how lost you seem—how without power
to persuade or frighten

—just another figure caught
in some
indecisive moment.

How pale you are
against the cathedral dark—
ghost in tragic stance,

one foot upon the stair as if to enter
—saddened there
as though some Love has befallen you.
A Study
Every exit is a word—

followed by a long red hallway
muffled by a gray silence;
some escape by following

the blue map of their lives,
past all the numbered doors
down the one-way stairs—

ghost-mingled and musty
with trapped shadows.
My hand follows a wall

for balance—reaches an end,
then another end—to a lobby
where inhabitants

look out of windows to the
blurry rain—so beautiful under
the streetlights—

in the rain-light
that pours down my face
in reflection on the inner side of

the window by the door where others
enter and leave and emphasize
my deepest loneliness.

(prev. pub. in Medusa’s Kitchen)
As If I Am the Image of Regret

After The Reach by Michael Whelan

In the perfect center of a motionless blue void I suspend
like a stopping of time, with the distance above and the

distance below of equal compulsion. Above me, a dome
of violet shadow and curving windows with no view and

a dim escape of ladders that climb past a swoop of breath-
held silence and an invisible flutter of wings. Below me,

a murmurous fading of applause while I hold to the pose
like that reached-for moment that dancers know between

leap and release back into gravity. I am a horizontal line
of stillness, connected by ceiling rope and rings and the

balance and skill of my own performance. Hovered thus,
I reach down and something reaches back. Our eyes con-

nect.  Above me, something sighs and lets go.
Somewhere in the Dark

After “Bird in silhouette against flare of light”
—Photo by James Ballard as seen in
         on the Gift of a Watermelon Pickle

O bird, in bird outline
O bird, in bird silhouette
O bird, in stark relief—
       that old thieved line

Around you, a rim of flared light
Behind you, a swirl of energy
Inside of you, the dark threat

Unreal or real, what
       has decided you?
Sharp beak and quiet eye—at rest,
       what has arrested you?

            …against swirl of energy
       …all light has suppressed in you
…self darkened to mere silhouette

A shadow-child might see you
       and think you tame.
A shadow-world might free you
       and release your name.
And I might rearrange the gathered
       instance of you to exclaim  :

                     …reality is not true
            …imagination has its own view
 …no shape of fear is darker than you
 The Release


Man of the wild dance—of the mad reunion,
let me dance with you, and whirl like you—
until my shadows beat like wings about me
making their own circles of lift and fall,
the way your garments whip and flail
like ghost demons of red light and
black momentum. Let me bend
in all your directions, follow
your darkest dream toward
the illusory center where
a mirror breaks—even as
you leap, through and away,
from the center that holds you.
How can you be held by images
that release you from the frantic dance
of being—you who are distant—you who
are gone—gone into the image of yourself.
You never open your eyes. You dance alone,
even as I dance beside you but avoid the mirror
that bends your fragments in a gradual glitter and
fade—and there is no further music for the dance.
Are you still my father?
For All the Light in There


The Love—become the symbol of
desire—the long look
into the self that looks into

the empty mirror for release—
the bewildered soul
in its essence—you the container,

you the griever and believer—
torn, as faith is torn, between mind
and mind, in their difference.

All is as it is.  Pay no one debt
to your limitation.
Let words take blame

as thought gives utterance.
How else believe in desire, leading
to love. All is not loss, or gain,

all is in the reaching, and the having
—the grasp into non-substance—
as relief—as joy—and the pain of joy.


Today’s LittleNip:

—Joyce Odam

Put this thought
with the other realizations
of simple wonderment :

even the moth—bird—shadow—
trapped within the area of no escape
is there but for the little while it takes . . .


Our thanks to Joyce Odam for her visions today of our Seed of the Week: Escape, as we all think about escape, release, liberation from the strange and dangerous circumstances of our lives these days. The perfume of flowers to clear the air; the perfume of poems to clear our heads. Thank you, Joyce!

Our new Seed of the Week is “The perfume of poetry”. Send your poems, photos & artwork about this (or any other) subject to kathykieth@hotmail.com. No deadline on SOWs, though, and for a peek at our past ones, click on “Calliope’s Closet”, the link at the top of this column, for plenty of others to choose from.


 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joseph Nolan, Stockton, CA

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Poetry perfume to clear our heads. . .


Monday, August 30, 2021

Dried Fruits & Half An Octopus

—Poetry by Caschwa (Carl Schwartz) and Joseph Nolan
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy of Joseph Nolan
No creatures from the sea or other-wheres were
harmed in the making of this blog.

—Caschwa, Sacramento, CA

first draft, unedited.
haphazardly connected
elements of verbal

thrown out to the always-
obedient, non-judgmental
dogs like the smell of raw
meat escaping somewhere
within range of a canine’s nose

the most politically incorrect
dialog the world has ever
seen is thus gobbled up,
no more than a tasty snack
for a liar’s best friend

the trick worked! do it again,
double down, over and over,
like it is the new normal
civilization be damned
let them eat garbage


I had some great dialog
ready to fit into verse
then time came and went
and it got way too cold
so I burned the log
and the burn got too big
so I tended the flames
and scorched my fingers
damn heat, anyway!!


write a
piano piece
for four hands
and after all that
stupendous effort
watch in dire horror
as half an octopus is
seated at the keyboard

or on the Supreme Court

or one could amass the battle-tested
expertise from each of the five-star
generals who won the last two
world wars, only to have the
awesome glow from all the
shiny war medals pinned
to their shirts highlight
the fact that suicide
bombers will win
the argument if
one makes a
display of


metaphor for many streets:
un-penalized infractions
beg escalating repeats
the law’s form of actions
are inconsequential feats
having no more traction
than metronome beats

tick tock, speed sign, tick tock
speed sign, the landscape
of easily ignored talk
canary cage darkened drape
line in sand drawn with chalk
radar monitor is an ape
paws on belly, mouth forms gawk

every moment, every day
speeders enjoy a privilege
no one looking, no price to pay
bending rules to the very edge
no traffic cops come that way
“see no evil” must be their pledge
honor system, come what may

the most that you will ever see
are electronic speed signs
putting a number to your glory
quite the opposite of land mines
feeding carrion to eternity
forget about those tickets and fines
speeders achieve longevity 

—Joseph Nolan, Stockton, CA

Some raisins,
Some prunes,
Some dried apricots,
Grow in boxes,
Just the way they seem,
When you go to eat them.

Wrinkled, though
They may be,
They’ve been
Just like that
For half-of-an-eternity
And never
Required drying
To get their shriveled looks.

It’s a myth,
You see,
That anything as sweet as they,
Required preparation.
They were just born that way!

—Joseph Nolan

Exactly, what
Becomes of zeros,
When they
Fall mute
On a floor
And no-one
Wants them,
When they
Can’t fit
An equation,
Are part of
No solution
To any problem,
As they were,

—Joseph Nolan

There are
Shoulds and coulds and oughtas,
Of things we would or would not do,
If we only had the wisdom,
To see our vain way through,

What we really wanna,
To what we really need
And also, for our brothers,
For whom our hearts do bleed,

When we see their suffering,
And wish to lend a hand,
Offering, not clumsily,
To interfere, offend.

To know the proper measure,
What to give and to withhold,
Compassion, tinged with wisdom,
All toward the greater-good.

—Joseph Nolan

I have lingered
In a river
That leads
Into an ocean,
But I never
Got to see
The endless sea.

I have felt
The flowing current,
The ebb and flow
Of changing tides,
But never understood
The mystery, besides.

I have time
To go swimming
In refreshing waters
And catch my food
By fishing.
My boat
Is set off
On the shore

And though
I never got
To where I want to go,
I’m happy,
Since I know
There is more. 

—Joseph Nolan

You can give it to yourself
Or withhold it, all your life.

You can’t ask for it from strangers
Or even from your wife.

It flows like a river
Throughout all your days
And would be your comfort
As though it were
The sun’s gentle rays,
Warming your weary bones,
Letting you know
You are never alone.


Today’s LittleNip:

—Joseph Nolan

We had a tiny window
For light to pity through,
Down into the darkness
Surrounding just we, two,
In our small apartment
That used to house
We, three,
But now, forever after,
We two would be


Thanks for today’s contributions from Caschwa (Carl Schwartz) and Joseph Nolan, as we travel toward the tail-end-tip of summer and this tawdry August!

Tonight (Mon. 8/30), 7:30pm: Sac. Poetry Center’s Socially Distant Verse presents Andy Laufer and Todd Boyd on Zoom at us02web.zoom.us/j/7638733462; Meeting ID: 763 873 3462; Passcode: r3trnofsdv/. Info: www.facebook.com/events/430872524906902/?ref=newsfeed/.




Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

Would you like to be a SnakePal?
All you have to do is send poetry and/or
photos and artwork to
kathykieth@hotmail.com. We post
work from all over the world, including
that which was previously-published.
Just remember:
the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—
for poetry, of course!

We’re still slithering around 
in smoke up here!


Sunday, August 29, 2021

Great Escape

Tortoise Just Awakened from Hibernation
—Public Domain Poetry Courtesy of Joseph Nolan, Stockton, CA

—Russell Edson (1935-2014)

The turtle carries his house on his back. He is both the house and the person of that house.
        But actually, under the shell is a little room where the true turtle, wearing long underwear, sits at a little table. At one end of the room a series of levers sticks out of slots in the floor, like the controls of a steam shovel. It is with these that the turtle controls the legs of his house.
       Most of the time the turtle sits under the sloping ceiling of his turtle room reading catalogues at the little table where a candle burns. He leans on one elbow, and then the other. He crosses one leg, and then the other. Finally he yawns and buries his head in his arms and sleeps.
       If he feels a child picking up his house he quickly douses the candle and runs to the control levers and activates the legs of his house and tries to escape.
       If he cannot escape he retracts the legs and withdraws the so-called head and waits. He knows that children are careless, and that there will come a time when he will be free to move his house to some secluded place, where he will relight his candle, take out his catalogues and read until at last he yawns. Then he’ll bury his head in his arms and sleep.... That is, until another child picks up his house....



For more about Russell Edson, go to www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/russell-edson/.


Saturday, August 28, 2021

Urban Zen in the Rust Belt

Urban Zen
—Poetry and Photos by Joseph Balaz, Cleveland, OH

Standing downtown

looking up
at da Terminal Tower building

makes me wonder
wat I’m doing heah in da first place

but no sense backtracking on dat
cause dis is wheah fate has led me.

You are wheah you is
and you is wheah you are

simple as dat.

So now Ohio
is part of da bio

even as my island sensibilities
stay taking everyting in

examining dat unique awareness
in da complexity of itself.

Wen I stay walking dese streets
I tink of anykine stuff too

like da pierogis and kielbasa
I just had foa lunch

and how dose ono grinds
wen just broke da mouth.

Ruminating in island lingo

while living
and playing Rust Belt bingo

all da numbahs dat come up foa me                                                                                             
is different from anybody else

cause I fill all da squares
wit perceptive kine circles

as round as da pupils in my eyes.

It comes down to da way

I view and interpret
da new world around me.

It’s like dat classic mind exercise
dat expands your tinking—

“If a tree falls in a forest
and no one is around to hear it

does it make a sound?”

Deahfore da parallel taught—

“If I stay tinking in Pidgin
ovah heah on da continent

does da language still exist?”

As long as it’s between my ears

dose familiar words and phrases
going live everywheah.

* * *

ono grinds               Delicious food.
broke da mouth       Expression that food is very good.
Pidgin                     Hawai’i Creole English.
Deadly Heat


You bettah grab da wheel
and start reversing backwards

cause da tipping point
is right around da bend.

From wun evidentiary standpoint

da projected disastrous weather
dat is beginning to arrive upon da earth

going fully use
all of dose greenhouse gases

to make everybody feel da heat.

Da petrocapitalists
are forcing your hand on da griddle

and making you sit
on da red hot coils of wun electric stove.

Moa bettah you scream
wun scream of protest

raddah den wun scream of agony.

Focus on dat corporate fat cat
continually pushing fossil fuels

wit wun big smile from ear to ear.

It’s time
to knock out some oily teeth

and let moa wind
and solar energy

flow through all da gaps.


Today’s LittleNip:

Hawaii is not a state of mind, but a state of grace.

—Paul Theroux


Welcome to the Kitchen, Joe! Joe Balaz writes in Hawaiian Islands Pidgin (Hawai’i Creole English) and American English. He is the author of Pidgin Eye, a book of poetry (www.amazon.com/Pidgin-Eye-Joe-Balaz/dp/1091108706). His art, concrete poetry, and visual poetry have appeared in numerous art and literary magazines online. Balaz presently lives in Cleveland, Ohio. Today he sends us two “synergies”, he says. Thanks, Joe—and don’t be a stranger!

Would you like to be a SnakePal? All you have to do is send poetry and/or photos and artwork to kathykieth@hotmail.com. We post work from all over the world, including
that which was previously-published. Just remember: the snakes of Medusa are always hungry—for poetry, of course!

Today’s poetry event with Traci Gourdine and Patrick Grizzell has been postponed till September 25th. Host Lara Gularte writes: “Patrick Grizzell was bitten by an angry Black Widow Spider [Friday] and received hospital treatment and medications. The good news is that Patrick was able to escape from the Spider's web and he did not become her prey. We will hear Traci and Patrick next month, but please come to an open reading [today, Saturday], same place, same time, and bring your poems, your book of poetry to read from, or a poem by your favorite poet. We will be inside Love Birds Coffee in Diamond Springs due to bad air quality.” Our thoughts are with Patrick today, and may this episode of his life pass quickly!


 Joe Balaz

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.



Friday, August 27, 2021

Waiting Out This Smoky Summer

—Poetry and Photos by Taylor Graham, Placerville, CA
—And scroll down for FORM FIDDLERS' FRIDAY!!


I’ve never seen smoke like that,
two tall towers rising from the cloud-
anvil taller—by worlds of pyro-convection—
than posts you set for the house
you built us on that ridge so many years ago.
Yesterday the house was standing, still.
Today? I try to read the portent
of smoke that’s built to tower-cloud
by fire-weather of its own. 


Praise my black cat Latches
who weaves between my face and laptop screen,
weaves my lap, my fingers on keyboard and mouse,
weaves herself into my searching cyberspace
for news, acreage on the map, how far/
how close to home—hoping for hope
in the dark before dawn
she weaves warm black fur
against televised early morning updates
ghosts of fire-illuminated smoke,
evacuations, spot fires, road closures—
though I push her away
she curves back as cats will, knowing
what they know, back & forth warp & weft
weaving spells of purr
black as 4 a.m. promise of dawn cloaked in smoke,
our human knowing/not knowing. 


Fields are August-brittle, brown
and flammable, waiting for a tinder-spark
in wild oats and thistledown—
lightning or electric arc
or—oh pray no shooting stars ignite the dark.

Two counties south are burning.
Giant fire-heads above the summit. Smoke
settles, lifts—winds are turning.
We breathe it, so thick we’d choke
to walk among our woods. Our beloved oak. 


Angel on Home Depot ladder
descends with more N95s.
I pay and, mask fit to my face,
I can sing thanks outdoors. 


Angelus on home depth-charge lading
descends with more niobium.
I pay and, mason-wasp fit to my face-off,
I can sing thaumaturgist outdoors.


You’d think it’s thrill of a lifetime
in the stale of not quite evening,

dog released from doors and rooms
of pent-up air, dashing out

to catch a strand of breeze
above the malingering garden—

a withered artichoke frond he found,
grabbed it, leaped & bowed,

brandished like a sword
or banner, dancing across dry stubble.

What sort of epiphany, such glory
of a desiccated, dying day? 


Today’s LittleNip:

—Taylor Graham

Stone angel tends your koi pond.
I’m here to tend your dogs. You’re away, who knows
how long? mapping the beyond—
smoke and fire, what flares and glows,
spots, re-ignites as our future comes and goes.


Living where she does, Taylor Graham has plenty of examples of our Seed of the Week, “Smoke”, and she has sent fine poems and photos about it to the Kitchen today, and many thanks for that. Taylor writes in forms, too: the Lira (“Waiting Out Summer” & “For Cathy at OES”); a Word-Can Poem (“Artichoke Dance”); a Ryūka (“Praise for the Upper Shelf”) and an N+7 [sometimes S+7], another of “those weird Oulipo constraints”, she says (“Prank for the Upper Shell-Bean”).

And now it’s time for . . .

It’s time for more contributions from Form Fiddlers, in addition to those sent to us by Taylor Graham! Each Friday for awhile, there will be poems posted here from some of our readers using forms—either ones which were mentioned on Medusa during the previous week, or whatever else floats through the Kitchen and the perpetually stoned mind of Medusa. If these instructions are vague, it's because they're meant to be. Just fiddle around with some forms and get them posted in the Kitchen, by golly! (See Medusa’s Form Finder at the end of this post for links to definitions of the forms used this week.)

Joyce Odam has sent us an Unrhymed Villanelle, which, as she says, is “after Carol Frith's modification of the Villanelle, away from the rhyme requirement of the original form”.

Villanelle, original form:
A1, x, A2;   x, x, A1;   x, x, A2;   x, x, A1;   x, x, A2;   x, x A1, A2   

—Joyce Odam, Sacramento, CA

Walking outside to another caustic evening,
stifling edges of the night close in.
We and our shadows slowly lose importance.

The red moon climbs another smoky sky.    
'Is summer really over,' we ask—derisive,
checking outdoors on another fire-scorched evening.

We smell the stubborn fires of a nearby county—
estimate the distance—sniff the air,
we and our shadows losing our importance

to the larger tragedies we try to fathom.
'When do you think it will rain', we ask—wishing
for overdue relief on this fire-thick evening,
our house becoming a vague dark shape behind us.
'It’s cooling down a bit', we say, for comfort
as we and our shadows gradually lose importance.

Small breezes start to build. The hard day softens.
'Let’s not go in just yet', we say, and shiver,
walking outside through another smoke-filled evening
where we and our shadows slowly lose importance.


Caschwa (Carl Schwartz) sent us a Lira; to me, this one is reminiscent of Russell Edson (www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/russell-edson), whose poetry I have, out of deep respect, posted many times in the Kitchen:

—Caschwa, Sacramento, CA

took him hours to find his shoes
after that ordeal, he could not find his feet
either one could yield some clues
must be his, not wonder whose
after that ordeal, he could not find his feet 

Then Carl tackled the Landay, but, as he says, “This poem started out in the form of a Landay, then went off to follow only some of the rules some of the time.” That happens a lot at my house; poems have lives of their own, and sometimes, off they go into worlds of their own. And if I’m lucky, sometimes they’ll take me with them . . .


each morning I slice an “everything“
bagel in half, put one half in the toaster oven

leave the room to go write poetry
until I hear the chiming bell tone call me over

or was that the carriage return bell’s
helpful hint from my manual typewriter of old?

those typewriters from yesteryear sit
far off, out of sight, but the sound of their bells remains 


And here is a Senryu Chain, again with those shoes:


they are a couple
who wear each other like shoes
that are broken in

sharing memories
of some moments together
laughing or crying

family fun like
getting splashed by the dolphins
and meeting mascots

it’s not the same now
physical limitations
warranty expired

climate is crumbling
democracy in peril
global pandemic

part of a marathon of
mortal challenges

they lay themselves down
peaceful slumber through the night
dreams will seed high hopes


Many thanks to our SnakePals for their brave fiddling! Would you like to be a SnakePal? All you have to do is send poetry—forms or not—and/or photos and artwork to kathykieth@hotmail.com. We post work from all over the world, including that which was previously-published. Just remember: the snakes of Medusa are always hungry!



See what you can make of this week’s poetry form, and send it to kathykieth@hotmail.com! (No deadline.) This week's challenge:

•••Decuain: www.shadowpoetry.com/resources/wip/decuain.html


MEDUSA’S FORM FINDER: Links to poetry forms mentioned today:

•••Decuain: www.shadowpoetry.com/resources/wip/decuain.html
•••Landay: www.writersdigest.com/write-better-poetry/landay-poetic-form OR www.poetryfoundation.org/learn/glossary-terms?category=209&page=2
•••Lira: poetscollective.org/poetryforms/lira
[or S+7]: heregoesheather.wordpress.com/2009/04/12/n-7-poetry
•••OULIPO Movement: poets.org/text/brief-guide-oulipo
•••Ryūka: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ryūka
•••Senryu: www.masterclass.com/articles/how-to-write-senryu-poems#quiz-0
•••Villanelle (rhymed; may be done unrhymed): www.writersdigest.com/write-better-poetry/poetic-forms-villanelle
•••Word-Can Poem: putting random words on slips of paper into a can, then drawing out a few and making a poem out of them.


—Public Domain Photo

Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.


Thursday, August 26, 2021

Dreams at Midnight

—Poetry and Photos by Carol Louise Moon, Placerville, CA


The garden of the princess is revealed.
Beneath a cloudy sky all is gained and
nothing lost. Princess Shikishi, third
daughter of Emperor Go-Shiragawa
says of spring, in virgin voice, “The
moon bares the garden.” Little stones
encircle the cherry tree which is her
Beloved. Having known the princess
and pecked seeds at her feet, the
yellow bird sits on her head listening
to cherry blossoms.

          blossoms and bird song
          vibrations of white moonlight
          pink snowflakes abound 



In a mighty zeppelin,
a honey-colored bird—
the two of us went

Green hills, blue skies,
red flares, purple regrets,
ravens on the horizon.

We are looking out
for the children,
rhinos in their bath tubs
who have left
living room carpets,
carpet crumbs and
carpet bugs.

From where we float
we hear the distant tune
of a spider’s violin.

(prev. pub. in Convergence Online, 2015)



Myself a bit sloppy, I withheld
critique on his attire as the
evening café dinner dragged on.
The conversation, at best,
smacked of some radical nuance,
though I don’t know how relevant.

Suddenly, I had an inkling of some
predetermined motive my date
possibly had in mind. So, to salvage
my time and dignity I added up my
cost of the meal and headed for
the cash register.

Passing a small Buddha by the back
door, I repeated some hippy phrases
from the ‘70s, then exited the café.
By lamplight I walked home to the
safety of my cozy town flat.

My date? Oh, I don’t know.
He seemed a bit dysfunctional in
a charming sort of way. By week’s
end I had changed my phone


After The Portioned Air,
Artwork by Joyce Odam

This boat has nowhere to go
with its sails only half-full of
portioned air—nowhere,
but back to the harbor
where great blubbering seals
with large red mouths
gaping with sharp teeth
will greet us under a red sun.
Yet, here we go again
half-full of hope, having failed
on all our promises, the horizon
being too far away, our launch
plans previously unregistered
with the Harbor Master. 


The midnight train chuffs
and puffs its way through my
dream, wailing its wail of
anxiety. The engine now leaves
the tracks and lodges itself atop
the great sycamore, a long-
standing landmark near the old
pottery shop. Smoke dances
from the treetop into tingling
night air. Broken boxcars
drape themselves over
splintered fences, crushing the
canvas tents of local homeless,
sending wild old men running
to escape catastrophe. The
caboose lies bleeding in a ditch
off to the side, as steel-gray
clouds scoot across the face
of a full August moon.

A line from “After a Death”,
Poem by Tomas Tranströmer

Once there was a shock
at the death of a country—
death of a great number of
its citizens, victims of a virus

that left behind a long
haul of destruction. But
these days even with an
air of denial, we perceive a

shimmering comet tail—
like the death of a dying star
too far away to elicit concern,
citizens too deaf of hear the alarm.


Today’s LittleNip:

The lamp once out

Cool stars enter

The window frame.
* * *

Plum flower temple:

Voices rise

From the foothills.
* * *

The crow has flown away:

Swaying in the evening sun,

A leafless tree.
* * *

Is the Muse 
A phantom that appears
On a dark and hazy night?

—Natsume Sōseki (1867-1916)


Carol Louise Moon has joined us in the Kitchen this morning, bringing tales of princesses and train wrecks and rhinos in the bathtub, and we thank her for today’s flights of fancy!
To see Joyce Odam's The Portioned Air, go to medusaskitchen.blogspot.com/2021/07/sorrows-in-stone.html and scroll down. 

For more about Tomas Transtrómer's "After a Death", see poets.org/poem/after-death/.



“…the distant tune of a spider’s violin.”
—Public Domain Photo

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clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.

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