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THE DISCOVERY OF RUBBER IN THE TENTH CENTURY

When you finish determing how long you can say “GOOOOAAAALLLLL!!! THEN SETTLE DOWN TO THIS.

A SEGMENT OF MY NOVEL NINE ELEVENS THAT TELLS ABOUT PACALL AND EXALL, THE PRINCELY TWINS OF A MAYAN KING AND PHOENIX THEIR PHOENICIAN JEW FRIEND WHO SAVED THEM FROM THE CARIBBEAN (CARIBBEAN MEANS CANNIBAL)AND BECAME THEIR SYSTEMS MANAGER AND RESIDENT ENGINEER AND SCIENTIST. PHOENIX ESSENTIALLY DISCOVERED A VULCANIZATION PROCESS THAT MORE THAN LESS MADE RUBBER WHAT IT IS TODAY.

People who look at reality and stuff differently think the vulcanizing rubber process was discovered either by Thomas Hancock in the UK around 1850 or by Chucky Goodyear in the US around 1850. But if that were so then NINE ELEVENS would not be such a great novel around the date 09/11/0911.

As much as I am normally convinced that fiction and reality are one and the same, I have never enjoyed the idea as much as I did when I was writing NINE ELEVENS. Especially this chapter. Why? Because real or fiction, the goal is to tell a story that is an anthology of allegories.

The twin princes are visiting systems manager Phoenix in an agricultural field.

Pacall is speaking:
“WE soooo agree! I wonder if two twins have ever optimized life so twin-somely.”

“And winsomely,” rhymed Exall.

“Thence comely,” chimed Pacall. “And inventively. How many centuries did the Maya city states, not to mention the Ass-techs, TRY TO bounce that solid, heavy, tiny futbol around with their hips before we came along and made it a thick skinned yet ballooned and light weight kickable sphere?”

“Yes,” said Exall. “The game was totally missing the miracle of footwork. We have made a science of footwork. Futbol players who use the Twin ball are able to make full use of their legs, indeed their entire body. And of course the martial art aspect. For an entire millenium and more futbol has been essentially warrior training. But, how militarily advantageous is it to have to wear that heavy waist belt in order to hip shot the ball, keeping in mind that the ball is symbolic of an enemy’s skull? With our long range kicks we have a real two-fer because we can drive the kick accurately and hard enough to nearly take an enemy player’s head, or skull, off with the rubber skull of our Twin ball.”

“Indeed, replied Pacall. “I can vaguely remember those days of trying to hipshot that heavy ball through that tiny goal ring more than fifteen feet up the wall. That a goal was seldom made, to me, diminished the excitement of a successful act. Not that you need a lot of them to inspire a player, but, hey, a point with some degree of frequency certainly improves the game.”

“Well, Pacall, the capability of managing the ball was half the package. The other half was your idea to make the goal a tethered basket at either end of the field. And the assignment of one player whose primary function is to defend the goal basket, deflecting the incoming shots. That added the defensive capability and that thinking was so transferable to warfare.”

As they talked they each were foot working a ball. And head working as well. They could stand and dribble a ball vertically into the sky for two or three feet with a skill that would shame a head porter with a three foot stack of fruit on the pate plate.

Occasionally they would head or kick interchange their balls with one another. And occasionally they would direct their balls directly at one another so as to reflect the ball back exactly to the exact place the ball came from. Over the years they had become quite good at this.

Pacall said, “Who would ever think that all we have done for futbol we did with the ulterior motive of improving our commercial capabilities? Even the flatball hats we, I mean Phoenix, developed so we can do head shots.”

“Yes, Exall, but had we never been blown off course and out across the cannibal sea we never would have shipwrecked on that strange little island. And had we never shipwrecked on that strange little island Phoenix never would have saved us from the cannibals. And had we never brought Phoenix back with us, we would never have given him the management of our rubber industry. And had we never put him in charge of rubber he never would have discovered all the things about rubber that have made him so valuable including maximal elasticity and ballooning. I guess it is safe to say ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’ or ‘no guts no rewards’.”

“Speaking of which, I mean whom, Pacall, we are supposed to meet Phoenix in the nursery bogs.”

An hour later the Twins were approaching the bog that was used for testing plants, soil, animal reactions to plants, crop production projections. They whistled for Phoenix. A few seconds later they heard an identical whistle sound come back.

The bog contained rows of mounded soil which left a river of water between every pair of rows. The center row had a path of gravel down it for easy travel.

Phoenix was watching two of his helpers, one at either end of a long pole. They were six rows apart. Five rope lines were spaced along the pole each rope line over one of the five ditches of water. At the end of each rope line was a rubber boat about four feet long. The boats were pointed at each end and bent upward. Something like black bananas, plantains. With a helper at each end of the pole, a surprisingly large volume of beans or corn could be towed at harvest. Planting crops on the mounds kept the produce from getting soggy. The water between the rows made for easy produce transport. The water was forever. The planted areas got 160 inches of rain annually.

“Hello, my mythological twin hero friends. We’re testing a comparison of our boat method with the former basket harvest. I think we are going to get at least ten times the former harvest transport efficiency. As you can see and as we planned, the thin, light rubber boats are now ribbed with a heavier stronger rubber for stability, shape maintenance, and easy float.

“At the end of the field the boats get tied end to end and can be floated on to the waterway with intermediate loading unloading.

“This is not to mention the reduction in the number of snake bites since the produce picker is never wading in the water. When a bite occurs the injured can occupy a boat and be floated away to the make shift medic stations for post antidote care.

“And do not forget. These boats make great single occupant canoes.”

“Phoenix,” said Pacall. “I have no doubt you are the most creatively productive member of this city state’s fifty thousand people.”

“You are too kind, Pacall. Let me give these helpers some instructions. Go up to my shop. Donau will serve you some chocolate. Then I will join you.”

Within minutes the three of them were sharing a cool, delicious, invigorating chocolate drink.

“Phoenix, you never cease to amaze and to please,” said Exall.

“Because success and focus go together like the rubber tree and the morning glory vine, Exall,” said Phoenix. “Yes, the rubber harvest boats are original. I have buyers acquiring additional rubber. I have estimates on the number of boats our city state will use, the number our city state annex will use, and the number we expect to be sold or bartered at each market going down the coast.”

“Speaking of original,” said Pacall. “Do you have something else to show us when we finish our chocolate?”

“YES, I DO,” Phoenix said slowly and distinctly and with a very affirmative grin.

The three talked. The subject was the same as always. They talked about when they had first met. But as always “when they had met” opened a door to some question; some consideration; perhaps some reality that existed because they met that would not have existed otherwise; what some shared knowledge made possible, maybe a discovery that would enable a better understanding of the geography of their world; maybe they would kindle an idea about why Venus behaved differently than the other planets. But, always it began with when they had met.

When they had met they had narrowly escaped disaster. When they had met they had produced a unique, impossible coincidence. And an indestructable friendship. Just ‘cuz.

Phoenix had always been the challenger. If a mountain even looked like it needed someone to surmount its rugged aspects, Phoenix was immediately climbing up and over its final edge and standing tall, looking out over the surrounding terrain to confirm to himself that, yes, the panorama was worth the work. Of course his strong desire sometimes clouded adequate planning. But, just as often he so wanted to succeed in the challenge that his planning was much more than adequate.

He reasoned though that if one did not bear the scars of confronting the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune then the probability was high that not enough challenges had been made or had not been made with sufficient intensity.

Yes, he was sufficiently self absorbed to run into a brick wall because his concentration was distracted with a “well, how many other humans had done this?”

Like, how many other guys started out in central Europe in the tenth century and ranged through as many lands and languages as he had? How many had crossed the Atlantic Ocean and lived to tell? No matter that no one knew or had ever heard his primary language. When he got there. Or, if he should get back. And he knew no one else’s language well enough to teach a history, a world trade, or geography lesson about his travels. And he had no time, anyhow. A new interest, curiosity, or encounter would occur any moment and off he would go again.

He knew once one understood something of language there were tricks to understanding and to appearing to be able to express himself in the language he had heard. A lot of hearing was observing expression and gestures and a lot of speaking was using his hands, shoulders, facial expressions, and inflection. Watching for content, emotion, a tone that would indicate significance.

He had learned some things about language. He had learned, for example, that the value of a person could be determined by how they treated their language. If they treated their language or languages with respect and care, with considerate and skillful use, then their power to think and reason and enjoy the elements of life would be expanded immensely.

For Phoenix, a hackneyed word or phrase, a weak metaphor used but without fresh intention to the conversation at hand divided Phoenix’s world into those he wanted to be around and those he did not.

Phoenix had learned some things about systems as well. One of his greatest joys was analyzing how something worked or analyzing how he had handled a task or project. He watched these replays with an interest and devotion.

Phoenix observed that people had different approaches to their television experience. Television of course has a simple etymology. It could be parsed into two terms. Tele means far. Vision is the capacity to see. So television means to see far. Like stars and stuff. And that is what everyone had the pleasure of doing freely every night.

*** soon, more or less

“And now, Phoenix, will you show us your new new thing?” asked Pacall.

Phoenix pointed to a plant raft that was held vertical from a branch by a rope. “Watch the plant raft.”

As the Twins watched the plant raft, Phoenix moved back and away. He raised a slingshot and fired an obsidian disk which flew straight and true and thumped into the plant raft.

“If the plant raft were a battle enemy it would be seriously wounded now,” he said. Donau had arrived and was handing slingshots to the Twins. “This is what can be done with the latest rubber I’m making. The effective range is three times that of the blowguns. The bullets can deliver the deadly poison like the blowguns. I am still working on an optimal bullet. It is also effective and accurate to launch a line into a tree or across a river.”

Pacall said, “and it is far more refined and useful and accurate than a sling. I think your new new thing is a great great thing. Hey,”

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PAPER VS DIGITAL: CRESTFALLEN

“Some of your book was hard to read,” she said as they were walking along the boulevard.

He looks crestfallenly at her.
Well, he could have looked at her some other way but he is really big on the sound of ‘crestfallen’, the word. But more than poking a linguaphile’s pique she can see that she has stepped into stuff that COULD be taken and at first WOULD be taken as the real thing of the moment rather than what really is the real thing of the moment.

He says, “Yeah, I have tried to surmise a few of the many things you might say about the philosophy embedded in that work. But, really:  ‘hard to read’ was not one of them.”

“Whatttttttt?” she says. “What are you talking about?”

As she asks that question a word comes to mind. Her mind. It describes the hopelessness she sees in his eyes, in his face, in his posture. The word captures the state of one magnificent surfer popped out of one of the magnificent surfer movies like Point Break. The surfer has traveled the globe trying to be  THE great surfer in the perfect location when THE magnificent hundred year storm brings THE biggest wave ever seen or, hopefully, experienced first hand. Or first foot rather. The surfer has found and caught THAT big wave. But, he is too forward on the lip and realizes he is going fall: hard and fast and then get beat to death by the very wave he wanted so to ride. Crestfallen is his experience, his hurt, his facial expression.
Crestfallen is the image she sees on his face; the image of certain death and hopeless failure. The damage done. She sees that perfect descriptive word that come to mind. His mind. Her mind. Then she  ‘crestfallen’ slide toward ‘resignation to horror’.

“Wait,” she says. I see what went wrong. Let’s rewind. Moving back from your approaching ‘resignation’, through your perfect picture of ‘crestfallen’ to ‘hard to read’. When I said ‘hard to read’ I said ‘some of it’. Why ‘some of it’? To begin with, the ‘some of it’ has nothing to do with your writing. It has to do with a common problem in books made of paper. The printing industry has for years been increasingly moving book text closer to the binding on the inner or binding side of book pages. An ongoing war of turf between text and
margin. They have almost destroyed completely the margin on the inner side of book pages. Used to be that one could hold the book in one hand and the coffee cup or wine glass or the ginger tea in the other hand. Now one has to lose the beverage. It takes two strong hands to get a book open enough to see the text that used to be protected by a significant margin. That strong hold is
necessary if one wishes to continue to read. And the attention given to the holding disturbs concentration on the text. That is what I mean by ‘some of your book is hard to read.’ That ‘some’  is the inner margin.

“So what I am saying is that I will enjoy your book a lot more when I get a digital copy. That digital copy is on CanDoJack.com. And while I have been talking I have been navigating my phone to the site and bingo, I just bought the book on line and bingo, click, click, I have downloaded the book and bingo, hard bound book to trash can.” Ensuring she was ‘pitcher winding up’ the book and not her phone, she hurled the book into the trash can as they passed it.

“WoW!” he said, cresting on a big, happy, grin.

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WHEN MOORS RULED IN EUROPE

The title of this post as indicated above is also the title of a great documentary movie which should turn the heads around of most people who think they know European history.

To begin with black people ruled one of the greatest societies Europe has known. I said BLACK PEOPLE RULED ONE OF THE GREATEST SOCIETIES EUROPE HAS KNOWN.

Just as startling to most would be the fact that when Spain’s King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella on behalf of the Catholic religion burned all the books of the Arabic people they were burning all the books about themselves as well as the books about everybody else in the world. In both cases they burned books of science, philosophy, history. They burned everything. They sent Columbus to the new world to destroy anything anybody in the new world had written or created. Then they brought back the new world’s gold to smear on all the statues and what not in all the Catholic churches in the world.

Being at times quite interested in profit motive and such, I used to sit in the “Cathedral” in Segovia and think. One of the things I thought about was how I could possibly remove all the gold from that church and take it back to south america and help rebuild some of what the Spanish world had done to “latin” america, not to mention Utah. Wow! Could I come through with a torch and melt the gold off the statues? How many people would I have to bribe to turn their heads while I heisted, hefted and hauled ass?

If you have read my novel, NINE ELEVENS, or any the posts and promotional materials about it on this site, then you know that I talk much about al Andalus, the Andalusia that existed before the vicious Vassals of dark ages posing as Christian saviors of Europe invaded northern Spain with the intention of destroying southern Spain in the name of Christ and the Holy Roman Church – but mainly the church.

The truth about the books is that the more than seventy libraries in Andalusia established by the Islamic rulers is this. The Chinese print mills coming into existence were used to make those books. The first mill went to Baghdad. The second went to Cordoba the capitol of Andalusia.

WHAT WAS IN THOSE BOOKS?
Well, the people of al Andalus, Andalusia, more or less collected copies of all the books ever created in Europe. Then they translated them to Arabic. So, the knowledge of everything was essentially in Arabic libraries. They were created by the Islamic invaders, the Jews, and the original Christians of southern Spain.

But where did the black part of the Islamic people come from? The etymology of the word ‘moor’ means black.

So al Andalus had the vigor and courage of the black moors of north Africa, the math and science of the Arabic world, the embedded Christians, and the Jewish people who remind me of Minnesota because in Minnesota I saw that attitude of “you betcha, we can work with that.” And many of those jews in al Andalus were fantastic translators especially Sahrah, the mother of the novel’s voyager hero Phoenix. The Phoenician Jews, if you will, were the family that controlled the largest commercial shipping enterprise the world had known.

The more I learn about Spain the more I realize that most countries are several countries. In Germany are essentially the north and south and very different and glad of it. Spain is Galicia, Asturia, Pais Basco, Catalan, Murcia, Andalusia, Castillia and let us not forget the tiny little northern country of Andorra.

Perhaps this post will help make it clear how important it is that Alhambra stay important and still stands where once stood one of the greatest civilizations that ever existed.

Annnnnnd, well, how can I put this? Maybe …
Go stuff yourself, Columbus!

When Moors Ruled Europe

 

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Serendipitydooda or WayCool Phone Thing

This is about fixing the problem of seeing images well enough on a phone or fixing images because you know users of your site will have trouble seeing them well.

Know too that I as many … probably – are tardy in realizing it might be a good idea when designing a site to essentially design two versions: 1) for mobile, 2) for bigger screens.

More tardily, maybe it might NOT be a good idea.

From all that, you may gather I  took the road more taken, the NOT fork. Not wanting to lay the serious knitting down to write a mobile version of a web site, I installed a popular app, WPtouch. Things got worse. Images became way too big for mobile screen because they were not being resized by the system software. Worse yet, all the images now had a dull orange patina. All images began looking like poorly retouched versions of ancient western movies.

So, I scurried into the bowels of WordPressHostdom to deactivate WPtouch. As my screen pointer approached the ‘deactivate’ button my other eye caught glimpse of the word ‘update’. Yup! Yip! Yay! Want to install the update? Yep!

Back on the mobile, I started looking at my site again. WOW! Horrible patina gone gone. Images much better especially with a little screen rotation. But the letters on my digital poetry event flyer still looked like a tiny tiny tiny ant revolution.

And here come the important watermelons, y’all!
When I two-finger-spread the image: no expansion.
I one-finger-pressed and held the image: voila: a dialogue box.
“Open the image?” asked dialogue.
“Yes, please and thank you.”
The image opened and allowed me to two-finger spread it!
Eureka!

And really, an entire post that though big is not too big to perhaps stop someone from embedding a hurled phone in a wall or a painting on it.

Whoopee! The two finger spread lives to bring vigor to another generation.

And, darn, think of all the peeps who will find when and where and who about the poetry event they are supposed to be hosting. Not to mention the phones which will avoid an early death.

*end of post*

 

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NINE ELEVENS “SEQUEL”

First, understand that the novel NINE ELEVENS has nothing to do with the catastrophe of September 11, 2001. The novel’s title is a clue to how things work. Except for wrinkles in time, it is relatively normal to assume that the presence of sinister in life only exceeds by a smidgin the imagination of the monstrous holograph of whoever or whatever cooks life’s books.

The novel uses the sinister reality of date trails. The possibility of trails of the date 9/11 and its relation to catastrophic and meaningful events is the question I posed to the internet search engines simply because that possibility arose in my imagination.

As I dug into it I realized I was on to something. The trails began to materialize. One of the trails was of particular interest. Some of the dates in that trail appear in the book cover photo. For some of the dates it takes a moment for the importance of the date and its catastrophe to sink in.

For example, even Eduardo Galeano, author of Open Veins of Latin America (1971), was surprised when his book received an unexpected publicity boost in 2009 when Hugo Chávez, president of Venezuela, thrust a copy into the hands of the US president, Barack Obama, at a summit meeting in Trinidad. Obama read it. The date of 9/11/1973 is a date most people now easily recall as the date on which the legitimate government of Salvador Allende, socialist president of Chile, was overthrown and Allende died horribly. To the thousands who were “disappeared”, tortured, murdered, expelled from Chile that date was an important one.

“So, Anyway” as John Cleese entitled his memoir, the trail of dates was suddenly so provocative to me that every time I looked at one of the dates in the trail, another novel began to form in my head. A year later I was delightfully researching the story of al Andalus, having grown accustomed to delightful research studying the Maya people of Central America. As I say that my eyes come to rest on a book: Breaking the Maya Code by Michael D. Coe. I realize again what an incredible experience that was and how remarkable that a study of the Maya would lead me to make a couple of them the first to navigate to Europe from the Caribbean – with the aid of a 500 pound turtle who was headed that way “Anyway”. And wooden shoe know those two Maya lovers would discover, and become part of,  al Andalus, a society almost as advanced as their own.

Al Andalus was not fiction, friends. In al Andalus, the physical land of Andalusia, jews, arabs, and christians lived in harmony as they created the most extensive library the world had known. Cordoba received the second magnificent print mill exported by China. The first went to Baghdad. 70 libraries were sprinkled across southern Spain as al Andalus translated all the books of the world into arabic. Of course my fictional Maya heroes helped.

“So, Anyway,” what about any of that would provoke a sequel to my novel? Welllll!!! What would not!?!? Here is a clue. One of the things that has grown to interest me more is this. The Jewish people were almost exterminated. Most of them left Israel in the diaspora(?s) of the latter half of the first century CE before, during, and after having been nearly annihilated by the Romans. OK, I get that. But, how did they survive? THEY were the refugees of their time. Yet, they have not only survived. They have thrived. How? They have been scattered among the countries of the world. They maintained their integrity as a people. They developed the skills necessary to live among all kinds of societies and all kinds of people. OK, that is the simple answer. Yet, that answer just provokes more questions.

Some might suggest the first possibility is good government? Anyone really awake today in the USA, or Israel,  would be quick to reply to that suggestion with the suggestion that  governments do NOT resemble their people, especially in the USA and Israel. Others might suggest that the laughter generated by that suggestion would probably lead to laughter becoming the leading cause of death.

But, anyway, the question that provoked those suggestions was supposed to be the subject of this post. But, I have spent the equivalent of a couple of long posts just getting to the question.

So, the question becomes this. Can I answer the question adequately in another post this size or is it going to require a s-e-q-u-e-l????

Stay tuned!

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Mobile Works

I will be continually updating the site as I strive to make it state-of-the-art and better for mobile users. Users should have no concern as to the site’s integrity.

First understand that the financial side of processing orders is done by PayPal. I have been using PayPal on my sites for 15 years and they have never messed up. SO SHOP!

I am concerned however that the site looks good and behaves well for mobile users.
Without doubt, online shopping is growing like crazy.
Without doubt the volume of shopping done via mobile devices is growing even more crazily.

But most important is reliability and integrity.
YEAH, WE HAVE THAT!

*end of post*

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SUN

audio verson – set volume before clicking: Sun

sun_earth

Sun –by everyman jack

I shine for you
I am a sun
I vaunt not
I boast not
I am one of many suns
But I shine for you

I shine for your mercurial whirl
your effulgence, your brilliance
your quotidian butterfly rush through existence
here today, gone tomorrow
ball of energy
your desire to transmit, emit, remit, and flit
from one space to another but always
communicating and innovating
absorbing and reflecting
and you think I light up your life
but I do it just to see you shine

You are my venus
You are love and beauty
orbiting clockwise
not anticlockwise as others do
because beauty brings its own direction
I don’t ask if love is contextual
I don’t ask if beauty would be so beautiful
in some other solar system
I just shine
I shine for you
That’s what I do

You are my earthy
scratch an itchy back
in a hot sand
zephyr sniffing
hair blowing
water dripping
surf riding
snow angel
You are my optimally heeled
catamaran in a wild wind
You are my texturally consummate
tetherball
I will never let you go
When you shake off the fleas of humanity
and rejuvenate yourself into the next eon
harmonizing to Joan Baez singing
Bob Dylan’s “Forever Young”
I will still shine for you
That’s what I do

When your martian bellicosity is seen
for what it is, a resentment of the hurt inflicted
by past civilizations that didn’t care about
the hurt they did to you – to their own detriment
I understand and send warm rays to help
you heal and feel again the warmth of your own
rejuvenating heart until your red anger
turns agains to green and blue
because I shine for you
that’s what I do

Your jovian magnanimity
Your saturnine tenacity
Your tipsy Uranus
Your brooding Neptune
Your mysterious Pluto
shroud yet complement the more obvious
atrributes
All those things even I don’t know about
inspire me to marvel
And yes, the unknown,
the X factor bring the whole of you
into an integral completeness

and me?
I am part of you
You are part of me
We are just holons
holding on and whirling through the
universe
on a joyride

We are a planetary system
to be precise and
I am your sun
I vaunt not that fact
I do not boast
I am one of many suns
But I shine for you

If all the grains of sand
on all the beaches
of the planet earth
were counted
that number of grains
is approximately the number of
suns in our universe
so I am one of many
but you
you are my one out of many
you are my “e pluribus unum”
all my planets comprise one you
me?
I shine for you
That’s what I do

[from candojack.com all righs reserved]

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ONE PAGE STAGE: POETRY HOW TO

Here is jack’s one paragraph or so guide to creating poetry. 

Beware authorities. If you find yourself in that setting try to stick around a bit for comedy’s sake. 

Don’t try to rhyme if you haven’t a gift for it. Robert Frost (most widely known US poet) though, said, “poetry without rhyme is like tennis without a net.” I suppose a dozen kinds of rhyme exist. I think my favorite is found in Emily Dickinson. She will have a stanza (say four lines) She will have a solid clear pure rhyme in every line but one. Say the last line. It may be a half rhyme: a different consonant, a short vowel,something that makes the line a little different from the rest. So one must ask, “why is that line different?” It is different e.g. to accent meaning. Perhaps like an exclamation point in punctuation. 

I love the hiphop technique of repeating a rhyme sound until it is about to scorch into monotony.

Robert Pinsky, was US poet laureate about a decade ago. He said, “there are no rules.” Some assume that removes responsibility. Rather it increases it. He is saying you can do anything you want with poetry. But, you must make it work. 

For me poetry is best thought of as jazz. That is one of the reasons I think poetry is best when performed aloud. It IS performance. Some really great poets fail in delivery. Not loud enough, poor pitch, poor enunciation, poor timing, well read, flat. The current poet laureate of San Luis Obispo, Jerry Douglas Smith, is notable for his ability to capture dialect. In one of his poems you hear the poet dialing through the radio driving along a road. Different dialects, language accents, attitude. Each voice connects to the overall poem in a vital way. 

Whatever language techniques, poetic devices, word coinage, meanings twists, ah hahs, paintings drawn, are fair game. Here is how you know a poem is good. As you deliver, check the faces of the audience members. When they are smiling, nodding, on the edge of their seats, crying, laughing, laughing and crying, ole, bravo: that is a good poem. No feeling is as great to a poet as clearly discernable audience reaction. That is true sometimes even when they are throwing tomatoes or eggs. Love every smatter, kid. You have the experience of a life time. Twist of thought will come into a vibrant poetry creation session. When you get a good one and perform it, try to play it as a kayaker plays the rapids in swift moving water. Have no fear. You may drown. No problem. You are a poet. Eternally.

In the next node of my stream I will put up a poem called BLUE HAIRED POETRY. I don’t often let this one go out running around. Some myopic people might think it is stereotypical. They may be correct. And they may be right, as it were.

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A PORTRAIT OF THE ICONOCLAST AS AN OLD MAN

Iconoclast – AUDIO

Christ Cleaning the Temple

temple

i am still yearning, i am still learning
to choose free of conditioning
to select out of silent consideration
to expectorate sugar coated propaganda
to regurgitate traditional victuals
to make this life my own
no pawn in their game
no name that they name
no same that is their same
my life is my own web site
no templates please
no dreamweaver, no web fusion
let me write the raw code
let me create my own icons
let me compose my own style sheet
let me become my own layout
i am an ancient youth
still yearning, still learning to be free

i am not the sheep
i am not the bellwhether
i am not the shepherd
i am not the wolf who steals the lamb
i am not the eagle who feeds from its carcass
i am not form
i am the infinitely inchoate
i am the always becoming
i am not the “I AM THAT I AM”
i am the “becoming that which i am becoming”
still yearning, still learning to be free

credit card numbers cannot contain me
computer programs will not process me, confess me
big brother will not discover
the secrets of my soul
how i become whole
that spymaster mole
will not unroll
this secret code
because it is not
it is becoming
it is the humming
of the summing
of the me
still yearning, still learning to be free

i am not your nielsen rating
i am not your prophet prating
i am not your flag waver
i am not your citizen
i am not your patriot
i am not your passport bearer
i am not your ballistic
i am not your statistic
for you cannot see this sample
you cannot fathom this six feet under
becoming asunder
the root of the shoot of a tree with no name
the story with absolutely no history
still yearning, still learning to be free

look
i am not your altar boy to fondle
i am not your poster child for a god fearing upbringing
i am not the blood stained proof of virginity on your white wedding night sheet
i am not the contents of your skinner box
i am not the pavlov’s dog for your ringing bell
i am the becoming of originality
still yearning, still learning to be free

I AM BECOMING… me