Two poems by Punam Sharma

God (Senryu)

When a man decides
to play god to his brethren
humanity dies

Illusion

The bed is unmade, has been unmade for weeks
though I do change the sheets, I like the look of disarray
it makes the room look lived in
I also like leaving empty coffee cups on the side table
when I come back from work
I can feel the presence of the other self
my soul floats back and forth
between me and the other self I oft see in the mirror
we do have conversations too,
I mean a girl has to talk!
I am glad I have company
for I am tired of answering
probing questions about this and that
how I manage alone and all that blah
then, when she peers at me from the mirror
I breathe easy and we giggle together
for loneliness has no room in this room for two.

,,

Punam is a stay at home wife and mom, who writes for textbooks. Her poems have been published by Tuck Magazine, Spillwords and Indian Periodical. She blogs as paeansunplugged on WordPress.

How Many Bullets, by Giselle Marks

How many bullets
Mean freedom to you?
How many people
Do you need to die?
Is one not enough
Or doesn’t twenty sate your bloody lust?

How many bullets
And how many dead?
Children and women
Do you need to kill?
Do you feel a man
Taking many lives?
Sorry for your hate
Sadder for those who met a bloody fate!

How many bullets
And how many guns
Must you sell today?
Not an honest buck
No you don’t give a …
How many will fall
As long as they pay
In slaughtered innocence today

Lifestation Observation, by Jennifer Brown Banks

My heart bleeds
That “Johnny can’t read”
Due to unmet needs,
And inequality
In educational facilities—
Books that are outdated,
Torn and faded,
And a future slated
For poverty—
Sadly,
There was no win/win
In the “Separate but equal doctrine”
For it failed to provide
For those in fact
Born on the wrong side
Of the track
And whose cardinal sin
Is having too much melanin
In their skin

In Memoriam, by A.D. Moore

Black
Cold granite
Standing tall,

With the names
Of them all,

Who answered the clarion’s
Patriotic call—

It was not to some ball
Held at some Civic Hall,
Or a romp at the local
Shopping mall,

Rather
To a place
Where they showed some gall,
Before making the fearful, fatal fall,

And now, I’m telling ya’ll
Their supreme sacrifices
Will never be forgotten,
Their names,
Their deeds,
Not so small,
Will live on for an eternity,
On the Vietnam Veteran’s Monumental Wall!

 

A.D. Moore is a military veteran and retired U.S. postal worker. He is the author of “STREET TALK AND MOORE.” Moore is a member of Poets United to Advance the Arts, in Illinois.
Visit his site at:

http://admoore44.blogspot.com/

Two poems by Laura Grace Weldon

Instead of War  

“America’s post-9/11 military interventions have killed over a half million people.” Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

Send our most promising youth
to work with young people
of strife-torn countries, where they build
centers for learning, the arts, healing.
Build understanding. Build friendship.

Send elders to share stories with elders,
poets to write with poets, musicians whose songs,
sung together, reach the marrow as music can do.

Send families to visit families, drink tea,
watch children squabble and play,
seeing in each another
a common desire for safety, belonging, hope.

Consider what trillions spent on destruction
might accomplish for good.
Envision drones delivering ripe fruit;
checkpoints checking out library books;
stockpiled Lego blocks free to any child,
their bright primary colors connecting
into any shape ingenuity makes possible.

 

Dehumanization Pays

My congressman isn’t in his office for summer recess hours
as promised, so I don’t get to share my shuddering outrage,
don’t get to ask how he sleeps at night. I drive back
through small towns, past farms,
thinking of brave people seeking freedom,
of children seized from loved ones,
of places kept hypothermia cold
where soap and due process are denied.

Border Patrol Facebook posts mock asylum seekers
cruelly as this president does, all
deliberately meant to dehumanize.
Calling people “animals.”
Leaving them in filth, in despair.
Packing human beings tight as products in boxcars.
All meant to make it easier
to build a wall between us and them,
easier to commit human rights violations,
easier to get massive campaign donations
from private prison corporations.
Easier to slide a country
into the tight pockets
of fascism’s slick overcoat.

..

Laura Grace Weldon is the author of poetry collections Blackbird (Grayson Books, 2019) and Tending (Aldrich Press, 2013), and as well as a handbook of alternative education titled Free Range Learning (Hohm Press, 2010). Her background includes teaching nonviolence workshops, writing collaborative poetry with nursing home residents, and facilitating support groups for abuse survivors. She works as a book editor and teaches community writing classes. Connnect with her at lauragraceweldon.com.

Admission, by Mary Wight

Krug, Macallan, Armagnac,
whatever they want, OK Jack—
already on the move, he’s slip-sliding
past beluga, chocolate fountains, oiling
the buzzing craic with a drizzle here, a dribble there,
pumping palms, patting asses, working the white Carrara floor.

Yeah I’ve done OK, he drawls, re-telling his wife and anyone
who’ll listen how he rode the tiger as if it was a done-in
fairground nag, up and down but mostly up
and up the greasy pole, made the top,
jumped before the roof fell in,
took nothing on his chin,

landed on his Guccied toes,
crouched and sprang again, closed
a deal overnight betting on the fact the walls
would crumble now, and of course was right. He calls
himself the constructive-executioner without the merest hint
of irony. Says there’s always got to be a hole, to make a decent mint.

..

First published in Poetry London in 1212

Mary Wight lives in the Scottish Borders. She has had poems published in magazines and anthologies, most recently in Envoi, The Blue Nib, The Poets’ Republic and Firth.

Man of the People, by David Babatunde Wilson

A man of the people
A man of the folk
He’s our kind of person
An everyday bloke

Schooled in posh Eton
In privilege and wealth
When ill he can skip
The National Health

He speaks for the masses
He speaks for the many
For those who have money
Or don’t have a penny

With a cabinet of cronies
And like-minded friends
Who’ll push through his Brexit
However it ends

He speaks as sees
In the North or the South
And only offends
When he opens his mouth

He says what he’s thinking
And doesn’t need notes
He’ll change his opinion
In the pursuit of votes

He’s a man of the people
And he’ll do what he can
To serve your best interests
If you’re a wealthy white man

Two poems by Bojana Stojcic

CORRIDA DE TOROS

 

An adrenaline-seeking town dressed in red and white
runs down the cobblestone streets like a hungry river

in the fierce heat of the Mediterranean sun
enraged bulls show no mercy

to those who slip and fall
who slip and fall

a ruthless wolf pack in San Fermin
with days passing between feedings

locates, singles out
and stalks

its prey from a distance
staying out of sight until it’s ready to attack

not a deer, not a moose
not a bison, not an elk

but a beaver, feeble and sightless,
breathing the air of placid sufficiency

opportunistic feeders, unable to retain saliva
within their mouths, circle and test before

bringing the victim to the ground
the conquest of paradise

the animal does not die of blood loss or shock
but of shame

 

 

PARENTAL ADVICE

 

finish school
find a decent girl/boy from a nice family
you’ll marry and have kids with
read the bible, praise the lord
save for a down payment and try to break
the shackles of debt before you drop dead
get a job you can commit to for the next 40 years until
you retire at the age when you’re good for nothing
then watch your kids do the same mistakes, in the same order

..

Bojana Stojcic teaches, bitches, writes, bites and tries to breathe in between. Her poems and flash pieces are published or forthcoming in Rust + Moth, Anti-Heroin Chic, Barren Magazine, The Opiate, Burning House Press, Down in the Dirt, Mojave Heart Review, Dodging the Rain, Foxglove Journal, Spillwords, the Blue Nib, the Stray Branch, Tuck magazine, X-R-A-Y Literary Magazine, Nightingale & Sparrow and Visual Verse. She blogs regularly at Coffee and Confessions to go.

Cossetted, by Angi Holden

At school, everyone stretched upwards, ambition
a pair of silent claws. These boys all knew one another,
fraternised in the holidays, took one another’s sisters
to parties in Sussex, to hunt balls in Gloucestershire,
dressed like their fathers.

The boys who inherited the school like an old watch
didn’t have to use their brains, even if they had them.
What security: to have always been well-off.
The future would look comfortingly like the past.

Scholarship boys had to live on their wits, set apart,
herded, marked off, their world a social laboratory,
clever animals in an alien habitat. Their labour of inclusion,
like a journey of immigration, was a matter of barely visible laws:
certain areas of London, prep schools, London shops
certain sports, clothes, brands of aftershave,
distinguished surnames: all signified.

If they were posh, scholars were interestingly so,
came from bohemian and eccentric families,
like Boris, a familiar sight as he charged his way around:
The bigfoot stoop, the bumbling confidence,
the skimmed-milk pallor, the berserk hair, the impression
he’d been freshly released from some institution.

All, already in place.

..

A ‘verbatim’ poem,, for consideration. The source material is taken from an article by James Wood, originally published in LRB. I have altered words only for consistency of tense or for grammatical sense, and have re-ordered stanzas for flow.

Four poems by Z D Dicks

Diogenes
..
In the centre of the city     at the cross
is a man     Diogenes     suited and booted
he rifles     through a bomb proof bin
..
He pulls out an arm     with a half squashed
sandwich     a bite mark at corner     and waves it
at a thick     lipsticked woman     on stilt heels
and twists crust     points it like judges finger

Men don’t think about sex     every ten
seconds     they think where’s my socks
where’s my lunch     and I’m late for work

An office lady     staring at him     scrunches the paint
on her face     leaving mud banks     at corners
of eyes     she veers away     from the soggy
lettuce     and floppy bread     tumbling like a clown

Do you mind     I’m on my lunch break
hold my calls!

Diogenes smears mayonnaise around his
mouth     like gloss     wiggles hips in mock march
and salutes police     turns his head     shields
words with back of hand     and whisper shouts

Gotta to go     I’m booked up all day
kind regards     here’s my one o’clock

He untucks a shirt     tosses a hang man’s
noose     kicks off his trousers     plucks
a folded letter     from inside jacket pocket
feels the government ply     inking between
the heavy stamp     of fingers in buttocks

Diogenes bows low     like an actor     who’s finished
performing     the scrunched flower unclenched
is picked up     and thrown to feet     he presents
wrists     in Christ pose shrug     to an audience
rejected and offers his refusal     for universal credit

..
..

Enlightenment 

As Venus     plunged into night     hotter     than all
the planets in the solar system     the Morning Star
Lucifer     moved on her journey     around the sun
forever tied to fission blasts     and punished     for
her gift     an apple     giving luminescence to taste
buds     and wisdom of texture     she was cast into
retrograde orbit     backwards     against gods pull
for daring to share     her vision of warmth     through
black trees in sky     and in books she was labelled
the opposer     and temptress of men     but it was
only a question she asked that led to her exile
against the grain of solar hell

Why make them suffer?     You gave me light and heat
to see and reflect you     into every body     but     why do they suffer?
I feel the knowledge     and smoulder at my surface     but they freeze
and weep     in death and decay     why     do you make them suffer?

When all  they want is the caress of your ardency     not in glare
or flaring flood     why do     you     feel they should suffer?     Blister
their skin     without clothes and demand praise     for giving
them food     but     why force them to suffer?

Their lives are short     and you say to revere     you     and if
they don’t     and don’t understand     why do you demand to make
them suffer?     Where do the outcasts go     when you turn your
winter in them     after they die     with no grip of rules

So please     why would do they deserve to suffer?
You say to obey     or will cast them     to shiver     and starve
but why bother to make them suffer?     I can create     but
I wouldn’t want to     because     I     wouldn’t see them suffer

A response of no response
and she descended     a heretic     of her own volition
..

..

Europe

Europe used to be
a student     hitch hiking to the next party
fine cuisine     wafted to sun glazed balconies
the taste     of champagne bubbling on tongue
catching a ride on a boat     reclined in an embrace
and languages     clattering     together as rain drops

Britain is now
the taste of continental cheese     out of date
crisp packets and chocolate     reduced in weight
citizens rounded up and deported
the smell of recycling boxes     overflowing
flag waving     when no battle has been won

Britain was
a shared ideal my family died for
where I spent my childhood     and played chess
the sad look on a friends face     saying     It’s happening again
where human rights were     first     adopted
the place millions march     but     it isn’t in papers

Britain is in Europe     however     its spirit     like so many
once welcomed immigrants     has too been cast out

..

..
Heckle

Heckle: to rudely interrupt

The words split     from the back of the room
a clumsy hatchet hack     right down the aisle
digging into the space     without seats
as a blunt shovel slips     around an oak root
it slid across a speakers face     a flat
scratch     that flushed to forehead     sitting
in the furrow of     boney     crows feet

Heckle: to undo strands to make ready for spinning

And with that curl spring up and out
the fibre of one poet was unravelled
his hemp     dressed down     with hairline stare
to straighten his loud     frayed     attitude for rotating
away from other poets     unattracted
to his new     garish     loud design     and too loose
a mouth     and too tightly wound     for anything
but a flimsy     late apology

..

Z D Dicks 
Founder/CEO Gloucestershire Poetry Society and Gloucester Poetry Festival 

Children Need Love, by Giselle Marks

Into the world another baby is born
From warmth of mother’s womb torn
Raging with emotion, always demanding
Breathing, crying, kicking and screaming

Into the world another child is brought
Miracle – man and woman have wrought
Give each child everything they need
Children need more than ample feed

Food and warmth are not quite enough
The world around us is really tough
A child needs teaching, a child needs love
Expect no manna sent from above

To have children is a precious prize
No clone, an unknown with family ties
A daunting task all parents will find
Ties which were always meant to bind

Parents, please your children cherish
Fragile creatures who so easily perish
They’ll come to be the new mankind
Yet love nurtures both heart and mind

We can’t promise the world will live on
So love each daughter and every son
But children we should help to become
Then to hatred they will not succumb

Into the world another child is born
Expel all prejudice, hate and scorn
So each can love and be loved in return
Dream that all adults will finally learn

Ruminations of a Water Cannon, by Claire Pinney

Piffle, tosh and
supine jelly!
Scrapped amidst
such obloquy!
If only…
Oh the,
eminent
feasibility
for sunlit uplands
and ruthless
whump
and
bonk
to knock
the weak,
one in the eye
and off their feet.
Ker-splonk!
Now you’ll see…
merrily, merrily
shall I live now
and strike down the losers,
keeping order,
mop up the doomsters,
take back our borders,
and with optimistic intent
wash away,
wash away
dissent.

Two poems by Anna Saunders

The Wolf Speaks at the Tory Party Conference

 

We are tender to our own
and feed them our prey – pulverised
to a paste

a bloom of coruscating
scarlet, lumpen with gristle
on our lips.

We aren’t how the novels portray us
we are worse than that.

You could say we cower from those
who are our equals

preferring instead to track down
the weak the sick, the broken.

There we are half hidden
in the dark fir forest

panting, our lolling tongues
fat with want
glistening with cocoons of saliva.

Learn from us
seek out those you can overpower
break them down to that which your offspring can digest.

Reduce them to a quick
then let those from your blood line
eat them from you.

..

The Benefit Minister’s Mythological Creature of Choice

 

Once they had rested on a lonely shore,
the travellers laid out their food
bright fruits and berries, deep and red as the bruised lips
of the violently kissed,

plump and bold as pulvinated flesh,
largesse leaking a glitter and gleam onto stone.

How hungry they are, after weeks of travelling
how quickly the food is taken from their plates
as down she sweeps, quick beak working deftly.

She doesn’t chose to come back as a phoenix,
or Pegasus – foaled from Medusa
springing from a slashed mothers neck,

immortal winged horse
whose hooves could birth fountains.

She chooses a Harpy.

They are the Souls of the wind she says, an urge and energy
plucking the seas, forcing the grasses back in her direction.

She has forgotten they are beaked kleptomaniacs
carrying a stink of carrion.

Who we really are is occult and buried,
our egos are alchemists bedded down in the dark,
magicians – groping round to turn soiled sheets into doves.

She is half right about the word – she has harnessed the wind.

She rides the thermals
like a princess  carried on a sedan chair.

..

Anna Saunders is the author of Communion, (Wild Conversations Press), Struck, (Pindrop Press) Kissing the She Bear, (Wild Conversations Press), Burne Jones and the Fox and Ghosting for Beginners ( Indigo Dreams), and the forthcoming Persephone Goes on Question Time.. Anna has been described as ‘a poet who surely can do anything’ by The North  and ‘a poet of quite remarkable gifts’ by Bernard O’Donoghue. 
Anna-Saunders

Anna Saunders. Cheltenham Poetry Festival Founding Director. 

Author  https://annasaunderswriter.co.uk

 

The Party Formerly Known As The GOP, by Howard Richard Debs

(a found poem)

An elephant never forgets.
I remember what Abraham Lincoln said:
A house divided against itself cannot stand.
I believe this government cannot endure,
permanently half slave and half free.
I do not expect the Union to be dissolved—
I do not expect the house to fall—
but I do expect it will cease to be divided.
It will become all one thing or all the other.
I remember what Theodore Roosevelt said:
Moreover, it cannot too often be pointed out
that to strike with ignorant violence
at the interests of one set of men
almost inevitably endangers the interests of all.
The fundamental rule in our national life—
the rule which underlies all others—
is that, on the whole, and in the long run,
we shall go up or down together.
I remember what Ronald Reagan said:
A troubled and afflicted mankind looks to us,
pleading for us to keep our rendezvous with destiny;
that we will uphold the principles of self-reliance,
self-discipline, morality, and, above all,
responsible liberty for every individual
that we will become that shining city on a hill.
I remember what some say Patrick Henry said:
Now is the time for all good men
to come to the aid of their party.

— 

Afterword

In considering a response to the news that only four Republicans voted for a House resolution in condemnation of racist remarks by a President of the United States I thought it fitting to express some of the fundamental thinking of prominent Republicans of the past, yet I felt as strongly that I could not presume to speak for them so I went to classic sources for their own words which I adapted to my purposes. I am old enough to remember the Republican Party of the likes of a Barry Goldwater, and more recently of the likes of a John McCain. I am old enough to remember Conservatives the likes of a William F. Buckley and more recently Conservatives the likes of a Charles Krauthammer. The original Republican Party was made up mostly of abolitionists opposed to slavery in the South. In my eyes, the GOP is no more. I also remember what Elie Wiesel said: “We must take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”

News source link: https://www.cbsnews.com/news/house-vote-trump-tweets-four-republicans-voted-to-condemn-racist-remarks-democratic-women-congress-the-squad/

..

Howard Richard Debs is a recipient of the 2015 Anna Davidson Rosenberg Poetry Awards. His essays, fiction, and poetry appear internationally in numerous publications; His book Gallery: A Collection of Pictures and Words (Scarlet Leaf Publishing) is a 2017 Best Book Awards and 2018 Book Excellence Awards recipient.  He is co-editor of New Voices: Contemporary Writers Confronting the Holocaust forthcoming in 2020 from Vallentine Mitchell of London, publisher of the first English language edition of Anne Frank’s diaryHe is listed in the Poets & Writers Directory: https://www.pw.org/content/howard_debs

Two poems by Clara B. Jones

AAA_Traits_00

Sonnets For Lyotard #1

 

  1. You hid Lyotard’s notebooks in your vitrine…
    …because Philosophy made me what I am today. 
  2. Your boredom poems changed ego’smeaning.
    Freud was the Ubernode of personal growth. 
  3. It was only true aposteriori.
    Only then did I sympathize with Cyborgs. 
  4. Critics are rarely your friends…
    because “cold” is a polyphone, and critics can be ruthless. 
  5. Your skin is xanthous.
    My race is unknown, but resistance is a virtue. 
  6. You were born before the riots…
    …when lives were at risk. 
  7. They praised Adorno, but Kristeva called them Romantic.
    Wordsworth was their favorite poet after Keats died young. 
  8. Romantics invented “the sublime”…
    …also, they collected stamps. 
  9. A poem is a series of dots.
    It is noble to turn dots into words. 
  10. Despite contradictions, life does not paralyze you.
    I drink lemonade at every meal. 
  11. Science, morality, and art define culture...
    …Lyotard said Kant was no genius. 
  12. You have blurred the distinction between life and art.
    My main goal is to enlighten. 
  13. Your comrades need to know you’re OK.
    It’s not something I think about, but maybe that will change.
  1. Some are rich...
    …others pave the way.

#2

  1. You hid Lyotard’s notebooks in your vitrine…
    …because Philosophy made me what I am today. 
  2. Your boredom poems changed the way we see ego.
    Nihilism is the Ubernode of personal growth. 
  3. It was only true a posteriori.
    Only then did I sympathize with radicals. 
  4. Critics are never friendly…
    because cold” is a polyphone, and critics are ruthless. 
  5. Your skin is xanthous.
    My race is unknown, but my eyes are green. 
  6. You were born before the riots.
    Self-image is always fragile, and civil unrest is yellow. 
  7. They praised the Frankfurt School, but Kristeva called them Romantic.
    Wordsworth was their favorite poet—and Keats their major loss. 
  8. Romantics invented “the sublime.”
    …also, they ate enchiladas. 
  9. A poem is a series of dots.
    It is sad that we turn dots into words. 
  10. Despite contradictions, life does not paralyze you.
    I meditate after every meal. 
  11. Science, morality, and art define culture.
    Lyotard said Kant was no genius. 
  12. You have blurred the distinction between life and art.
    My main goal is to disrupt. 
  13. The kids need to know you’re OK.
    It’s not something I ever think about, but maybe that will change.
  1. All are free...
    …and all know the way.
    ..

    Clara B. Jones is a Knowledge Worker practicing in Silver Spring, MD. Among other writings, she is author of Poems for Rachel Dolezal (GaussPDF, 2019). Clara, also, conducts research on Experimental Literature, Radical Publishing, as well as, Art and Technology.

Nonsense poem for the hottest day on record, by Charlie Hill

The world is a ball of crushed Coke cans,
my wine has a plastic-y nose,
there’s camels on Svalbard High Street,
burning coal to help us cool down;

too much info has left us all powerless,
with nematodes sporting louche crowns,
people going camping in cities,
and others planning jaunts to the moon.

Two poems by Jennifer Lagier

Mean

 

Migrant kids at the border are being denied soap, medical care, toothbrushes and blankets, but Melania is determined to better the lives of white kids throughout the country.  – Red Painter, Crooks and Liars

 

Taking a page from the Herman Goering playbook,
racist-in-chief promotes increased immigration sweeps,
mass detentions, family separations, infants and children
stuffed into private concentration camp cages
denied medical treatment, toothbrushes, blankets.

As contractors rake in the dough,
Fox & Fiends spin reality,
parrot conspiracy theory sound bites,
rationalize crimes against humanity, assert
“You can’t have a Hyatt on the border.”

While Individual 1 panders
to Neo-Nazi wet-dreams of sadistic power,
sick babies cower under tinfoil covers,
sleep on concrete, cry for their mothers.
Tone-deaf Melania dismisses cruelty,
announces a new illiterate slogan:
Be Best Ambassadors to Improve Lives of Children.

..

Full of Trash

“It’s like Barr summarized the ‘Twilight’ novels as ‘a girl in Florida goes to third base with a wookie’.” – John Oliver

We’re living in the upside-down universe.
It’s what you get when you cross corrupt with stupid,
add a soupcon of self-righteous smugness,
enlist the aid of Christian fundamentalist trolls.

A two year, multi-million-dollar investigation reveals
criminals saved from prosecution by incompetence
assisted by disobedience, disorganization.
Malfeasance gleefully French kisses cancerous evil.

Cheeto-in-chief’s fluffer issues a four-page fake summary,
visits various talking head “news” shows
to perform mandatory ass-kissing
in an attempt to distract rumbling voters.

Power-hungry repugs take a victory lap,
celebrate democracy’s dismantlement
as brain-washed sycophants chorus
“No collusion. Total exoneration.”

..

Jennifer Lagier has published sixteen books and in a variety of anthologies and literary magazines, taught with California Poets in the Schools, edits the Monterey Review, helps coordinate Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium Second Sunday readings. Recent publications: Harbinger Asylum, The Rockford Review, Syndic Literary Journal, From Everywhere A Little: A Migration Anthology, Fire and Rain: Ecopoetry of California, Missing Persons: Reflections on Dementia, Silent Screams: Poetic Journeys Through Addiction and Recovery. Newest books: Camille Mobilizes (FutureCycle Press) and Trumped Up Election (Xi Draconis Books). Website: jlagier.net Facebook:www.facebook.com/JenniferLagier/

Facebook, by Zuzana Susu

in 10 years all machinistics and intricacies, the targets of the algorhytms and the claim ‘they’ now quickly make on ‘communitystandards’, have all changed. when was Zuckerberg before the Tribunal ? 2 years ago, or perhaps 1½ year ? the topic there was to protect young people for, against, themselves. for sexual predators, hedgefund geniuses. what I did remember was how Zuckerberg succeeded to answer each highly specific question with the big unpersonal hypercorporate answer: that they would work on it. the paradox is that, if they want such social media to work, they have to install filters (against porno, religious fanaticism, hatesites, hatepages, that mentally sick people with violent purposes can not set up a web to organise, for instance, a neoKuKluxKlan (laTrumpe does that for them)). of course horrendous things happened but I have an idea without Facebook and Twitter such heinous things would also have happened. so they have to install filters and on the other hand, leave some freedom to the 2?, 3? billion users. but then we talk about such national varieties, ethnicist cultural habits, somehow still taking the Western white male viewpoint as reference. already 10 years ago I had fiery discussions with überZelous people with their rocksteady conviction that what they thought, was moral world measure. this paradox between the Amish and Las Vegas (to make a stupid comparison but for the sake of clarity) sits in the heart of the social media and, probably, in humanity. in the beginning (I think FB started perhaps in 1994?) but for me that was 2009, it seemed more personal, with friendship, even love, sometimes a ‘groupfeeling’, you really had the feeling you talked with individual persons and being who I am, filterless I dived in, headlong. now it seems all more abstract, more infested with ads. while I also remember that, if I got too many ads concerning available women, and the algorhytms discovered that you weren’t interested, they placed more ‘gay’ advertising. in the beginning I had many feisty discussions, which sometimes totally derailed, not to my dismay. to defend a friend, for instance Elazar, and some had antisemitic sensibilities, then it could turn particularly nasty. this seems now no more the case. I must say I am also pocked and measled and know when to back off. also you get older. if they attacked Carolyn I immediately came to the rescue (not that Carolyn herself is incapable to shove morons off). but there was also a strange phenomenon: we could reciprocally feel what was the matter with the other, transoceanically. I had this also with Linwood and Jacques Andervilliers. then a sad thing is that some friendships fade, even a love affair which brought Linwood to Europe (2012) and me to the US (2013 and 2014) broke….it does really hurt. I know there are people who do not undergo it all so intensely. I have had several blockings from FB when in downloading images for ‘an Album’, my fashionfoto’s sneeked in a tit here or there. but to me it had to do with fashion. yet you go against the ‘community standards’. in the beginning there was somewhat more liberty. to us, Europeans, we stumble against US-standards which are much more religiouscentered. there is NY, LA, LV, Chicago, Philly, Miami and Seattle and Atlanta. in big cities there are more leftwing people. with roomier esthetics. FB does still appeal to me. it has given me a forum to write 4400, and now unnumbered other texts behind that, and post them. right when laTrumpe was chosen I behaved like a bull in the porcelaincabin. I talked freely about him and met on a wall of silence. you understand that later. now FB is a hyperstructure. of course there are conspiricists, but I have never been that. it is partly, and ‘zonally’, controllable. it has changed the world. it has changed my world.

Tarpit, by Zuzana Susu

you reach your soul when tumbled in the tarpit, sticky
fingers, jetblack hairconditioner, granite walls hewn out,
of the earth, you have fallen in at night and your pulses
are scratched. you have reached the absolute depth:terra

yes then you touch your soul and artificial answers do
not help anymore. it is not easy to climb out of that pit
not becoming a laBrea artifact. and yet we’re bones and
flesh with thoughts (some) and feelings,skin primordially

under the laws ?, rather chaos, of astrophysics we thrive,
float through the universe being as alien as what we made
cinema about. extremophiles on earth living in water boiling
at 125° or under the ice at minus 45° (C.) or in sulfur coats

thrive nevertheless, on earth. in the deep ocean are rivers
which facilitate flourishing anoxide tubeworms, crabs, soft
waving algea, anaerobe micro-environments,where we never
thought to find life. this perhaps to say we’re not so special

we’re not the fucking endgoal of a linear development but
just contingent (accidental) ‘sums’ of our environment
which we now in decades fuck up irreversible. and for our
co-inhabitants. for our children, Baron, Donald.ah fuck them

in an American series about the spark of life settled on earth
it ended, how could it else, with the humans, our fantastic
brains, language, society, sedentarity. we ruled. they never
spoke of viruses, plants, animals, microbes, funghii. daHood

our selfimage is as big as our extremities are small and
overrated, masculinity as an elixir of testosterone in this
violet perfume fiol. however, oestrogens, enzymes, hormones
other than for reproduction shall spread like ink in water

Defusing the timebomb, by Dave Rendle

(for Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson)

Some say he’s all but won
for others a fly in the ointment
causing ripples of despair
as choruses of desperation
search for some way out of here
in the face of incredulous days
no room for jubilation
as idiocracy given keys of power.

There’s a difference between
austerity and robbery
the undemocratic process
that is not shown on the news
where they carpet bomb us with bullshit,
regurgitated soundbites that do not calm
do not expose the truth for all to see
that exist in the shadows of our being.

As divisions cracks are fostered
a snake charmer releases bag of tricks
time to shape new spectacles
end illusion, ignite passionate fire
create a new parliament for the people
built on circuits of love
where veracity in the end
will be what is left standing.

The hungry and those hardest hit
the broken and abandoned
with nothing left to lose.
will take on the mantle of power
no longer needing to run or beg
cancelling out abominations
the mists of their tomorrows
glimmering with hope.