Monday, March 18, 2024

The Joie de Vivre of Kites

 —Poetry by Nolcha Fox, Stephen Kingsnorth,
Dawn Pisturino, Joe Nolan, and Caschwa
—Public Domain Photos Courtesy
of Joe Nolan, Stephen Kingsnorth
and Dawn Pisturino
—Nolcha Fox, Buffalo, WY

I don’t recall the colors.
I don’t recall the shape.
I recall a futile flight
of kite into the air.
I hoped we would
get closer, give
love a little lift.
We needed more
than wind to send
a failure flying high.
 Red Kite
—Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Stephen Kingsnorth

—Stephen Kingsnorth, Coedpoeth, Wrexham, Wales

Mosquito dancing, hover hair,
jig to ballroom, sudden fall,
though scooped before full fly to floor,
a shudder, hold, then swoops to whirl,
until it drops, bite leaves its mark.

Too, here be dragons, gold on black,
spitting fire in air attack
as pull on strings; or lighting wick,
moon rising lanterns, airlift shrines,
in clouds of witness, past enact.

Fast run and throw, for lift off, strand,
far reach of sand for landing strip,
with off shore wind, unwind taut line,
see soar of shape from clifftop site,
until that tug, pang hunger strikes.

Euclidian, so clear defined,
a quadrilateral designed
reflecting symmetry in kind,
diagonal, its axis line.
Unless a box, core type refined.

The kite’s a mark engraved in glass,
on labels where a sofa lies,
protection against smash in crash,
or feeding fire, its noxious smoke—
for quality, trade guarantee.

It’s BSI, the agency,
a British Standards Institute,
that flies a kite for safety first;
though fly by nights with shoddy goods
sure break the law from market stalls.

But flying kites in bedtime tales,
now column inches, stories leaked—
more floated schemes, political,
to test the current public mood,
as the elect, their safety first.

With forked tail, not the tongue above,
not dragon, red, flag field of green,
but plot, airspace, prey, red kites,
the poisoned raptor breeds once more,
Welsh nation’s, note, favourite bird. 
 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Dawn Pisturino

—Dawn Pisturino, Golden Valley, AZ

Flying Kites on the Marina

Spending the day flying kites on the Marina
While noisy seagulls circle overhead,
Making spectacles of themselves
Among the colorful alien objects
With long tails flapping in the wind.
Kites shaped like dragons
Breathe fire at the sun.
Oblong boxes made from scratch
And plain paper diamonds in rainbow colors
Reach to the heavens,
Tethered to the earth by eager children
And expert adults, so earnest in their endeavor
To fly highest and farthest.
Blow, wind, blow, and help the competitors
Outdo one another!
Crowds gather to watch the race,
Making mental bets on the outcome.
The excitement grows,
The crowd oohs and aahs,
And suddenly, the wind dies
And all bets are off.

* * *

San Francisco

I watch psychedelic flowers on the wallpaper
Turn somersaults, spinning like pinwheels
Against a green background.
Coit Tower emerges from this garden,
Rising high against an ocean sky.
The Golden Gate Bridge shines brilliantly
Against a yellow sun, its orange towers
A familiar landmark among the clouds.
19th & Irving hangs heavy with smoke:
Restaurants and coffee houses,
Reefers and incense from the
Head shops along the street.
I breathe in ocean spray and seaweed
On Ocean Beach, meditating on
The full moon and moonlight
Flung carelessly across the water
At high tide. A soothing scene
That captures my heart
And peacefully lays
My soul to rest.

* * *

Foggy City

Cold, clammy fog
Settles over the city
With stifling thickness,
Turning the living into ghosts
Wandering through an ethereal
World of white nothingness.
Muffled sounds break through the quiet.
Red lights flash through the foggy shield.
The dead rise unwillingly,
Already caught in their own purgatory.
The world of the living
And the world of the dead
Intermingle, recognize this mishap
Of Fate, withdraw, and return
To their own spheres of being.
 —Public Domain Photo 
Courtesy of Joe Nolan

—Joe Nolan, Stockton, CA
In portal,
A predicament,
About a carbon footprint
We have spent
Just to get here,
To our
Poetry reading.

Maybe we
Should have stayed
On Zoom,
Looking at 24 faces
Per page?

That way, we
Could have saved our gas,
That we burned on
Overburdened highways,
Coming and going,
To global warming
And all the degradation
We deplore.
Don't mess with me on Mondays...
—Photo Courtesy of Public Domain

—Joe Nolan
There’s a game in town.
Everybody, gather round.
It’s a game
Of up and down.
The losers take the latter.

Evictions and foreclosures,
People on the street.
That’s the way
We do,
These days,
When their circle is complete.

In a game of musical chairs,
Some must lose their seat.
The D.J. on the music-beat
Controls the needle-arm.
The timing of the trauma
Is meant to do you harm.

It’s a game
We’ve all
Signed onto—
To play, to
Win or lose.

It’s not a game
That we’d prefer, but
It’s the only game in town.
 —Public Domain Illustration 
Courtesy of Joe Nolan

—Joe Nolan

The collapse of Western Civilization
Has happened before.
It happened to the Romans
And to the Byzantines,
One-thousand years, later.

It seems that a collapse
Is scheduled in the cards,
Waiting to descend.

Nations and empires
Have their beginnings
And also, their ends.

What are we
To make of this?
We, who
Wish to persist,

Within our own existence,
Though the gates of
Our nations might fall? 
 —Public Domain Photo Courtesy of Joe Nolan

—Joe Nolan

Try to eat
A little bit
Of everything
Doctors tell you
Not to,
Each and every day.

Drink a drink of
Since they live
In water,
Every single day,
No matter what
Advisors say.

Promotes longevity.
The more you do things
Your own way
The longer you
Are likely to
Exercise your will.

Continue to do
What you like to do
Despite the rules—
Joie de vivre
Is what lubricates
Your machine.


Today’s LittleNip:


I’ve had several
good days flying kites, and they’re
still up there, somewhere


—Medusa, wishing us all a little more
joie de vivre
 The REAL cat’s pyjamas…
—Photo Courtesy of Public Domain

A reminder that
Poetry in Motion read-around
takes place in Placerville
this morning, 10:30am; and
Sacramento Poetry Center presents
 Julia Levine and Susan Kelly-DeWitt
tonight in Sacramento, 7:30pm.
For info about these and other
future poetry happenings in
Northern California and otherwheres,
click on
in the links at the top of this page—
and keep an eye on this link and on
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