Categories
Poetry

America

by Allen Ginsberg

America I've given you all and now I'm nothing.
America two dollars and twentyseven cents January
17, 1956.
I can't stand my own mind.
America when will we end the human war?
Go **** yourself with your atom bomb.
I don't feel good don't bother me.
I won't write my poem till I'm in my right mind.
America when will you be angelic?
When will you take off your clothes?
When will you look at yourself through the grave?
When will you be worthy of your million Trotskyites?
America why are your libraries full of tears?
America when will you send your eggs to India?
I'm sick of your insane demands.
When can I go into the supermarket and buy what I
need with my good looks?
America after all it is you and I who are perfect not
the next world.
Your machinery is too much for me.
You made me want to be a saint.
There must be some other way to settle this argument.
Burroughs is in Tangiers I don't think he'll come back
it's sinister.
Are you being sinister or is this some form of practical
joke?
I'm trying to come to the point.
I refuse to give up my obsession.
America stop pushing I know what I'm doing.
America the plum blossoms are falling.
I haven't read the newspapers for months, everyday
somebody goes on trial for murder.
America I feel sentimental about the Wobblies.
America I used to be a communist when I was a kid
I'm not sorry.
I smoke marijuana every chance I get.
I sit in my house for days on end and stare at the roses
in the closet.
When I go to Chinatown I get drunk and never get laid.
My mind is made up there's going to be trouble.
You should have seen me reading Marx.
My psychoanalyst thinks I'm perfectly right.
I won't say the Lord's Prayer.
I have mystical visions and cosmic vibrations.
America I still haven't told you what you did to Uncle
Max after he came over from Russia.

I'm addressing you.
Are you going to let your emotional life be run by
Time Magazine?
I'm obsessed by Time Magazine.
I read it every week.
Its cover stares at me every time I slink past the corner
candystore.
I read it in the basement of the Berkeley Public Library.
It's always telling me about responsibility. Business-
men are serious. Movie producers are serious.
Everybody's serious but me.
It occurs to me that I am America.
I am talking to myself again.

Asia is rising against me.
I haven't got a chinaman's chance.
I'd better consider my national resources.
My national resources consist of two joints of
marijuana millions of genitals an unpublishable
private literature that goes 1400 miles an hour
and twenty-five-thousand mental institutions.
I say nothing about my prisons nor the millions of
underprivileged who live in my flowerpots
under the light of five hundred suns.
I have abolished the ****houses of France, Tangiers
is the next to go.
My ambition is to be President despite the fact that
I'm a Catholic.
America how can I write a holy litany in your silly
mood?
I will continue like Henry Ford my strophes are as
individual as his automobiles more so they're
all different sexes.
America I will sell you strophes $2500 apiece $500
down on your old strophe
America free Tom Mooney
America save the Spanish Loyalists
America Sacco & Vanzetti must not die
America I am the Scottsboro boys.
America when I was seven momma took me to Com-
munist Cell meetings they sold us garbanzos a
handful per ticket a ticket costs a nickel and the
speeches were free everybody was angelic and
sentimental about the workers it was all so sin-
cere you have no idea what a good thing the
party was in 1835 Scott Nearing was a grand
old man a real mensch Mother Bloor made me
cry I once saw Israel Amter plain. Everybody
must have been a spy.
America you don't really want to go to war.
America it's them bad Russians.
Them Russians them Russians and them Chinamen.
And them Russians.
The Russia wants to eat us alive. The Russia's power
mad. She wants to take our cars from out our
garages.
Her wants to grab Chicago. Her needs a Red Readers'
Digest. Her wants our auto plants in Siberia.
Him big bureaucracy running our fillingsta-
tions.
That no good. Ugh. Him make Indians learn read.
Him need big black ****s. Hah. Her make us
all work sixteen hours a day. Help.
America this is quite serious.
America this is the impression I get from looking in
the television set.
America is this correct?
I'd better get right down to the job.
It's true I don't want to join the Army or turn lathes
in precision parts factories, I'm nearsighted and
psychopathic anyway.
America I'm putting my queer shoulder to the wheel.
Categories
Poetry

Proverbs of Hell

by William Blake

In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.
Drive your cart and your plow over the bones of the dead.
The road of excess leads to the palace of wisdom.
Prudence is a rich ugly old maid courted by Incapacity.
He who desires but acts not, breeds pestilence.
The cut worm forgives the plow.
Dip him in the river who loves water.
A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees.
He whose face gives no light, shall never become a star.
Eternity is in love with the productions of time.
The busy bee has no time for sorrow.
The hours of folly are measur'd by the clock, but of wis­dom: no clock can measure.
All wholsom food is caught without a net or a trap.
Bring out number weight & measure in a year of dearth.
No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings.
A dead body, revenges not injuries.
The most sublime act is to set another before you.
If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise.
Folly is the cloke of knavery.
Shame is Prides cloke.
Prisons are built with stones of Law, Brothels with bricks of Religion.
The pride of the peacock is the glory of God.
The lust of the goat is the bounty of God.
The wrath of the lion is the wisdom of God.
The nakedness of woman is the work of God.
Excess of sorrow laughs. Excess of joy weeps.
The roaring of lions, the howling of wolves, the raging of the stormy sea, and the destructive sword, are portions of eternity too great for the eye of man.
The fox condemns the trap, not himself.
Joys impregnate. Sorrows bring forth.
Let man wear the fell of the lion, woman the fleece of the sheep.
The bird a nest, the spider a web, man friendship.
The selfish smiling fool, & the sullen frowning fool, shall be both thought wise, that they may be a rod.
What is now proved was once only imagin'd.
The rat, the mouse, the fox, the rabbit: watch the roots; the lion, the tyger, the horse, the elephant, watch the fruits.
The cistern contains; the fountain overflows.
One thought, fills immensity.
Always be ready to speak your mind, and a base man will avoid you.
Every thing possible to be believ'd is an image of truth.
The eagle never lost so much time, as when he submitted to learn of the crow.
The fox provides for himself, but God provides for the lion.
Think in the morning. Act in the noon. Eat in the evening. Sleep in the night.
He who has suffer'd you to impose on him knows you.
As the plow follows words, so God rewards prayers.
The tygers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.
Expect poison from the standing water.
You never know what is enough unless you know what is more than enough.
Listen to the fools reproach! it is a kingly title!
The eyes of fire, the nostrils of air, the mouth of water, the beard of earth.
The weak in courage is strong in cunning.
The apple tree never asks the beech how he shall grow, nor the lion, the horse, how he shall take his prey.
The thankful reciever bears a plentiful harvest.
If others had not been foolish, we should be so.
The soul of sweet delight, can never be defil'd.
When thou seest an Eagle, thou seest a portion of Genius, lift up thy head!
As the catterpiller chooses the fairest leaves to lay her eggs on, so the priest lays his curse on the fairest joys.
To create a little flower is the labour of ages.
Damn, braces: Bless relaxes.
The best wine is the oldest, the best water the newest.
Prayers plow not! Praises reap not!
Joys laugh not! Sorrows weep not!
The head Sublime, the heart Pathos, the genitals Beauty, the hands & feet Proportion.
As the air to a bird or the sea to a fish, so is contempt to the contemptible.
The crow wish'd every thing was black, the owl, that every thing was white.
Exuberance is Beauty.
If the lion was advised by the fox, he would be cunning.
Improvement makes strait roads, but the crooked roads without Improvement, are roads of Genius.
Sooner murder an infant in its cradle than nurse unacted desires.
Where man is not nature is barren.
Truth can never be told so as to be understood, and not be believ'd.
Enough! or Too much!
The ancient Poets animated all sensible objects with Gods or Geniuses, calling them by the names and adorning them with the properties of woods, rivers, mountains, lakes, cities, nations, and whatever their enlarged & numerous senses could percieve.
And particularly they studied the genius of each city & country, placing it under its mental deity.
Till a system was formed, which some took advantage of & enslav'd the vulgar by attempting to realize or abstract the mental deities from their objects; thus began Priesthood.
Choosing forms of worship from poetic tales.
And a length they pronounc'd that the Gods had order'd such things.
Thus men forgot that All deities reside in the human breast.
Categories
Poetry

The Chimney Sweeper: A little black thing among the snow

by William Blake

A little black thing among the snow,

Crying "weep! 'weep!" in notes of woe!

"Where are thy father and mother? say?"

"They are both gone up to the church to pray.



Because I was happy upon the heath,

And smil'd among the winter's snow,

They clothed me in the clothes of death,

And taught me to sing the notes of woe.



And because I am happy and dance and sing,

They think they have done me no injury,

And are gone to praise God and his Priest and King,

Who make up a heaven of our misery."
Categories
Books

Books

by Billy Collins

From the heart of this dark, evacuated campus
I can hear the library humming in the night, 
a choir of authors murmuring inside their books
along the unlit, alphabetical shelves, 
Giovanni Pontano next to Pope, Dumas next to his son, 
each one stitched into his own private coat, 
together forming a low, gigantic chord of language. 

I picture a figure in the act of reading, 
shoes on a desk, head tilted into the wind of a book, 
a man in two worlds, holding the rope of his tie
as the suicide of lovers saturates a page, 
or lighting a cigarette in the middle of a theorem. 
He moves from paragraph to paragraph
as if touring a house of endless, paneled rooms. 

I hear the voice of my mother reading to me
from a chair facing the bed, books about horses and dogs, 
and inside her voice lie other distant sounds, 
the horrors of a stable ablaze in the night, 
a bark that is moving toward the brink of speech. 

I watch myself building bookshelves in college, 
walls within walls, as rain soaks New England, 
or standing in a bookstore in a trench coat. 

I see all of us reading ourselves away from ourselves, 
straining in circles of light to find more light
until the line of words becomes a trail of crumbs
that we follow across a page of fresh snow; 

when evening is shadowing the forest
and small birds flutter down to consume the crumbs, 
we have to listen hard to hear the voices
of the boy and his sister receding into the woods.
Categories
Poetry

Introduction to Poetry

by Billy Collins

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem’s room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author’s name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.
Categories
Books

The Baseball Chronicles

Edited by David Gallen

Fun collection of articles written about some of baseball best old-time stars. Most written during the players career. Fun read.

Categories
Poetry

The Goose

by Muriel Sparks

Do you want to know why I am alive today?
I will tell you.
Early on, during the food-shortage,
Some of us were miraculously presented
Each with a goose that laid a golden egg.
Myself, I killed the cackling thing and I ate it.
Alas, many and many of the other recipients
Died of gold-dust poisoning.
Categories
Poetry

Poem Beginning with a Line of Wittgenstein

by Donald Hall

The world is everything that is the case.
Now stop your blubbering and wash your face.
Categories
Poetry

Grass

by Carl Sandburg

Pile the bodies high at Austerlitz and Waterloo.
Shovel them under and let me work—
                I am the grass; I cover all.
And pile them high at Gettysburg
And pile them high at Ypres and Verdun.
Shovel them under and let me work.
Two years, ten years, and the passengers ask the conductor:
                What place is this?
                Where are we now?
                I am the grass.
                Let me work.

Categories
Books

Country of Baseball

The story of Dock Ellis, pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates. I remember him well from when I was a kid. The Pirates were my favorite team. I remember the names of most of the players mentioned.

Book was written by Donald Hall, Nobel Laureate poet, and big baseball fan too.

Categories
Books

Portraits and Observations – Truman Capote

Great collection of essays by Truman Capote. I had read In Cold Blood and some other things, but his essays are really his best work. Great stylist.

Categories
Vacations

Visited Dylan

Had lunch with Dylan in the Hampden neighborhood of Baltimore, filmmaker John Waters’ hangout. Ate lunch at Rocket to Venus, a John Waters’ favorite. Really good vegan place. Recommended.

Also stopped by Atomic Books, a very hip and cool bookstore.

Categories
Vacations

Went to the Philadelphia Flower Show

We visited the Philadelphia Flower Show for the second time. The theme was “The Rivera”. An amazing show, as it was last year.

We also did some sightseeing. We visited the National Constitutional Center on Independence Mall. Very well done. Particularly enjoyed the live performance. Not crowded at all.

Ate all our meals at the Reading Terminal. Kamal’s Falafel shop is very good.

We took a walk down the Penn Landing, which took us through the Old Town area. Saw City Hall. Massive.

We also saw the Love sculptor, create by Robert Indiana.

Categories
Quotes

Everything has its beauty but not everyone sees it. – Andy Warhol

Categories
Quotes

They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself. – Andy Warhol

Categories
Quotes

Don’t be satisfied with stories, how things have gone with others. Unfold your own myth. – Rumi

Categories
Quotes

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. – Rumi

Categories
Vacations

Trip to West Palm Beach/Spring Training

Went down to West Palm Beach to watch the World Champion Washington Nationals play a couple of spring training games. And also do some touristy things in the area. Good time all around.

Categories
Films

Two Popes

I liked this one. A serious story, well told.

Categories
Films

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood

Like all Terrentio movies, this one was both great and terrible at the same time. I’ll take it though. Not many lively movies these days. And great music.

Categories
Films

Parasite

I thought this movie was – at best – pretty good. At best. A great example of PC and rich guilt IMO.

Categories
Poetry

If

by Emily Dickinson

Categories
Exercise

RJ Clinic

Played tennis at the clinic. I really need to make some changes, but unfortunately, I don’t know what to change. I simply don’t try hard enough. Telling myself to try hard doesn’t work. So what do I do?

This might be something to think about.

6. You Settle for Less

Being content with what you have in life can be a good thing, but it can also lead to a lack of motivation. If you’re content and feel like you’ve settled in life, you aren’t going to be motivated to try new things. You believe you’ve gotten everything you can, so what would be the point of working for anything else?

If you want to improve your motivation, you need to realize you can have more in life. It’s good to be content with what you have, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be striving for something better.

link to article.

Categories
Gardening

Planted Two Winterberries

I planted two Winterberry bushes in the backyard today. I really need to buy some dynamite to make holes back there. I literally have to get out an ax to cut through all the roots.

Winterberries are native to Minnesota but will grow here. They want partial shade, so they should be good in our backyard. The female is a Winter Red, the male a Southern Gentleman. Apparently these two are a good pair since the Gentleman blooms late.

Categories
Films

1917

Went to see Sam Mendes’ 1917 today. Overall, I’d say it was rather gripping. The “one-shot” camera working seemed to really put the viewer inside the movie, and the first hour or so was pretty intense.

On the other hand. The whole thing seemed a bit far-fetched. Why would the British send only two men on such an important mission? I know they said they would travel faster than a larger group, but why would they send several groups? Why wouldn’t they use the airplanes? The whole thing seemed highly implausible to me.