Monthly Archives: February 2014

Today’s Guest Poet — Dan Brook

Dan Brook sent over this gentle poem– his fine tribute to labor and liberation. I am happy to publish it on the Little Planet Daily.

Yours in art and labor,

–Burl

Kibbutz Sa’ar

hot, remote
yet welcoming
a shared bubble
proud of itself
deservedly so
working in the mornings
out in the fields
or washing dishes,
doing laundry,
in the factory
resting in the afternoons
after lunch together
reading books
taking naps
writing poems
reveling in the evenings
playing games
playing music
dancing around
we shared everything
with communal kindness
one day
only one day
I worked with the chickens
stealing their eggs
(I’m sorry)
that day
I became vegetarian
I preferred
the oregano fields
I can still smell
the loveliness
of collective labor
and cooperative living
of alternative space
and utopian visions
within the confines
of this little commune
I sensed my freedom
I tasted our liberation

The Purpose of Stories

“The purpose of stories is to remind people of what they already know but temporarily may have forgotten”

–Barry Lopez

Seven Theses

I am an epigenetic Christian.

I came a long ways
to be somewhere near here.

Overcooked words
heat only the lies of priests.

The butchers bill cannot be paid
by chain weights on children.

Cavernous doesn’t begin
to describe my appetite

for getting in the way of
of angina like warnings

of hell’s trepanning of innocents
or of our imminent demise.

Planxty Wallace Stevens

Dense, viscous,
thicker than reason
(or “libry paste”
as my father used to say.)

Try to dive in
and he’s elusive
going all mystic disputation
in the tumult of integrations on you

until the insurance executive
who won a Pulitzer for poetry
decides to leave you an alleyway
to duck into.

Winding through
his staccato streets
narrowed by lime shuttered houses,

past his glass aswarm with things
backlit just enough
to glimpse his
green fan printed with red willow,

leading to the poolroom
where he sits playing cards
waiting for you to show up
and take him precisely at his word.

Ecdysis

I find I am
such a
strange mixture

of kindness
and
violence–

a monk
with a
shiv

or a clown car
with knives
on the wheels.

After the Motorcycle Accident

back aches
in a torn blue line
of furnaces

Hummingbird

sipping phrases
from trumpet flowers

always alert
for diving raiders

in your lusty
patch of anarchy

& always riffing faster
than Miles or Mingus