Sunday, October 25, 2009

Your Sunday Poem

From “Selected Poems 1969 – 2005” by David Harsent, originally in “A Bird’s Idea of Flight.”

The Archivist

I found him, as they said I would, walled-up
by tree-calf and buckram.
Anglepoise, lectern, stool,
stylus, dividers . . . He crouched
in a funnel of ivory light;
I heard the creak of vellum,
then my own breathing, then his – a rich
cackle of tar rising
in either lung. He sifted the arcane,
part-chanted, part-sung –
dates and times as usual, the usual rhymes
but also the way a name might sometimes become divisible by number.

‘Your children admire you. Worse than that,
your wives kept back
all the old stuff you thought you’d thrown away.
Your parents loved you in their secret selves.
Because you hated them they lean
towards you to apologize.’ He clicked
his tongue: ‘There’s little more to learn, but why
did you come to me? You could have got
this much and more from any girl
with a pack of cards, a gift-
shop crystal and a borrowed shawl.’

As he bent back to trawl
the page, I heard a rustle like something
stirring a fall of leaves, and a worm
came out of his head, a thin
filament, breaking the skin
of the waxy crescent
just behind his ear, nosing the air
for the hint of burning
back along the stack.
‘You have wasted your life.
I can’t give news of the journey
you want to undertake,
but everything here says pointless,
ill-advised; look for yourself . . .’ He was cupping
a mirror; I saw my image flow
from the glass to the sieve of his fingers.
He spread his hands: ‘What else . . .?
What else do you want to know?’


franc4 said...

this ain't a poem, but thought your readers might get a kick out of it.

Subject: History 101: Liberals Conservatives

This is very good and explains the differences between liberals and conservatives in an understandable way! :)

History 101

For those that don't know about history...... Here is a condensed version:

Humans originally existed as members of small bands of nomadic hunters/gatherers. They lived on deer in the mountains during the summer and would go to the coast and live on fish and lobster in the winter.

The two most important events in all of history were the invention of beer and the invention of the wheel. The wheel was invented to get man to the beer. These were the foundation of modern civilization and together were the catalyst for the splitting of humanity into two distinct subgroups:

1. Liberals
2. Conservatives

Once beer was discovered, it required grain and that was the beginning of agriculture. Neither the glass bottle nor aluminum can were invented yet, so while our early humans were sitting around waiting for them to be invented, they just stayed close to the brewery. That's how villages were formed.

Some men spent their days tracking and killing animals to B-B-Q at night while they were drinking beer. This was the beginning of what is known as the Conservative movement.

Other men who were weaker and less skilled at hunting learned to live off the conservatives by showing up for the nightly B-B-Q's and doing the sewing, fetching, and hair dressing. This was the beginning of the Liberal movement...

Some of these liberal men eventually evolved into women. The rest became known as girlie-men. Some noteworthy liberal achievements include the domestication of cats, the invention of group therapy, group hugs, and the concept of Democratic voting to decide how to divide the meat and beer that conservatives provided.

Over the years conservatives came to be symbolized by the largest, most powerful land animal on earth, the elephant. Liberals are symbolized by the jackass.

Modern liberals like imported beer (with lime added), but most prefer white wine or imported bottled water. They eat raw fish but like their beef well done. Sushi, tofu, and French food are standard liberal fare. Another interesting evolutionary side note: most of their women have higher testosterone levels than their men. Most social workers, personal injury attorneys, journalists, dreamers in Hollywood and group therapists are liberals. Liberals invented the designated hitter rule because it wasn't fair to make the pitcher also bat.

Conservatives drink domestic beer, mostly Bud.. They eat red meat and still provide for their women. Conservatives are big-game hunters, rodeo cowboys, lumberjacks, construction workers, firemen, medical doctors, police officers, corporate executives, athletes, members of the military, airline pilots and generally anyone who works productively. Conservatives who own companies hire other conservatives who want to work for a living.

Liberals produce little or nothing. They like to govern the producers and decide what to do with the production. Liberals believe Europeans are more enlightened than Americans. That is why most of the liberals remained in Europe when conservatives were coming to America. They crept in after the Wild West was tamed and created a business of trying to get more for nothing.

Here ends today's lesson in world history:

It should be noted that a Liberal may have a momentary urge to angrily respond to the above before forwarding it.

A Conservative will simply laugh and be so convinced of the absolute truth of this history that it will be forwarded immediately to other true believers and to more liberals just to tick them off.

And there you have it. Let your next action reveal your true self.

Churadogs said...

Hmm, I would suggest that a proper response by intelligent, educated "liberals" and educated intelligent "conservatives" might well be Embarassed Silence at a public display (anonymous, of course, because who would put their real name to this sort of silly internet chain letter) of immature ignoranance disguised as "humor," and a ferverent hope that the poster doesn't actually believe this stuff, because if he he/she did, well, Oh, Dear, what can one say?

franc4 said...

I'd say, you get's just what you politely called "immature ignorance", but then consider the mentality of some of your "commentors".

Churadogs said...

Ah, yes. Ah, well . . .Oh Dear . . . sigh.