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Five Tanka for Creation

800px-Flammarion

Ὅταν οὖν τι σῶμα κατὰ μηδὲν ἐξαλλάττηται
τῶν προϋπαρχόντων, ἡσυχάζειν αὐτό φαμεν…. -Galen

1
Photosynthesis
Before there was anything
To kiss or embrace,
Before our bed was warm with
Your soil or my seed — hunger.

2
Caress of plasma,
Hydrogen and helium —
Touches my face as
My giddy hands graze your thighs,
Heaven’s dizzying columns.

3
Tectonic spangle
Of plates on the lithosphere;
Your soft surf of breasts
Against my trembling shoreline;
You alone, tsunami’s love.

4
The original
Hertzsprung-Russell diagram,
This random order
Constellates your dark features;
Your fuse burns a comet’s tail.

5
Trout scales, clade branches,
Ascend in rainbow patterns —
Your body pulses
Shallows beneath coral cliffs;
Your eyes glitter dark, seaward.

6
Eukaryotic—
The foundation of all flesh,
Dante’s (h)O-M-O
Draws me to your deepest earth —
Creative, an act of love.

7
The cool part of day,
A sort of post-coital
Tristesse setting in;
For you walk in my garden—
So perfect, so incomplete.

Easter 2017

I asked my mother, “What is love?”
And she said, “Sacrifice.
Lay down your will, forget yourself
And your service will suffice
To gain precisely what you give — 
The pearl without a price.”

I asked my father, “What is love?”
And he replied, “Desire.
Gird up your will, seek what is good
Obtain what you admire.
For heaven is a gift that’s given
To those who dare aspire.”

I asked my child, “What is love?”
And she thought it was a test
And so she answered, “God is love.”
And her account was best.
The Son laid down, and then raised up
So that we might be blessed.

Everybody! Everybody! Part One: Alanna Boudreau

Korrektiv Press hardly seems like a real thing any more, and yet…poetry contests! SO. While I writhe under the feverish desire to take off work, buy a bowlful of Adderall, and pound out the zine version of Gaga Confidential in time for the release of Alien: Covenant next week, I will use this nervous energy to post about a few things that are actually happening in the religio-aesthetic sphere.

First up: bluesy chanteusey Alanna Boudreau is doing another album (following the budding Hands in the Land, the blooming Hints & Guesses, and the sap-rising Champion), and she’s looking for funds on Kickstarter. She’s hooked up with a quality producer, it sounds like, and I, for one, am eager to hear the results. But first, she’s gotta get the money: for musicians, for studio time, for production, etc.

So rally, Korrektiv, rally!

A few videos to remind y’all of what she sounds like:

And a personal favorite:

KORREKTIV 2017 POETRY CONTEST WINNERS

Thank you all for participating in this year’s sonnet contest. Suffice it to say everyone was up for the challenge who submitted and suffice it to say that it wasn’t an easy decision to make regarding the winners. (Judges always say it, but that doesn’t make it any less true.)

First, here are the three Honorable Mentions – in no particular order.

Rose Thorn

Within the night’s expiring hour we lie,
Together, still yet sundered as by miles –
Unwitting, was it word or deed that I
Unfolded too ungently, joy defiled?
Tis true, they say: that every blooming rose
Doth hide beneath its blush the piercing thorn –
That every swain who guards the ambling cows
Singeth sorrow to the beckoning morn.
I feed my love upon thy favorite song –
The minstrel says that love is but a game
An easy guest, who bids farewell ere long –
And wonder, hath he entertained such pain?
And in my heart I know: thou’d not have fled
If this in time might I to thee have said.

Poison, “Every Rose Has its Thorn” – By Rebecca Bratten Weiss

****************

oops beer again

This sin I do to you in shame confess
That made thee sure this more than friendship be
And knowing not thy poor heart’s sweet distress
Did’st yet again make light of constancy
If now I can beweep thy outcast state
Mine own love’s strength thus to subside
No prayerful petition could abate
The wilting of what hidden in me lied
You played with me, thus I with thee dids’t play
And from thy catechizing looks I learn’d
By rote the bookish glances that today
Your gull’d heart thinks it has by spending earn’d
Forgive me for bending thy thoughts in pain
O cold conclusion! I did it again

Britney Spears, “Oops!… I Did It Again” – by Roguish O’Leary

************

mercury beer

At dawn when I arise the sun to greet
With forbidding dread its sovereign eye,
And tread my course with ever-failing feet,
My heavy soul doth seem content to die.
I hie me to the glass to there confer
With mine own visage, who cries out perforce
To heaven, and, as weeping boughs of myrrh,
The bitt’rest tears his pleas to thus endorse.
O, Lord, thou knowest well I have kept faith
With thee, this long and empty run of years,
Though weary time hast made of me a wraith,
Love’s ledger sadly fallen in arrears.
And so, I crave a boon from Thee above,
Canst Thou not find me somebody to love?

–Freddie Mercury, “Somebody To Love” – Courtney F.

**************

beatkees

Third Place:

Should I conceal myself ‘neath bluebird wing
As she gives song, and should the bird of dawn
Forsake his office – what a glorious thing!
Alas, he calls. I rise, I blink, I yawn.
I hie myself unto the lavat’ry
To shave. The razor, like ingratitude,
Is cold, and like a sometime friend gone by,
It stings; yet gladsome is my attitude.
Thou thought me once a brave and horsed knight
In habit white, but since discover’d me
A man, no more; an ordinary wight
Who spends not money, but good times with thee.
O be ye blithe and merry, sleepy Jean!
Believe thy daydreams, my homecoming queen!

The Monkees, “Daydream Believer” (written by John Stewart) – Father Richard Libby

*************

ain't no mountain

Second Place:

Recall when I emancipated thee
Thy trust in me thou could’st enumerate
I vowed that day to ever faithful be,
If thou should wist, in somewise be there straight.

Nor wind nor rain nor winters bitter cold
Mayst stop me if you feel yourself travailed
Thou art my destination and my goal
E’en if I’m cabined, cribbed, confined, assailed.
My love lives in the chapter of my bosom
Though miles might keep us both so far apart
If e’er thou need’st a hand to help thy dorsum
To answer in the method of the heart…

No mountain’s high enough, no valle so low
No rill so wide enough to keep me from you.

–“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye – William Lasseter

**************

can't get no...

First Place:

Alas, no satisfaction cans’t I receive
Though the attempt repeatedly I make
Whilst rambling in horseless carriage, without reprieve
Some gentleman drones counsel I shan’t take
Say I, I cannot find contentedness
Though heartily do I endeavor more
The flashing box promotes dementedness
Of a launderer whose tobacco I abhor
Again, bereft, unsatisfied, I cry
Whilst I bemoan the maid with eyes so fair
Who to answer my entreaty doth deny
Even a fleeting glance with me to share
Cheerfulness eludeth me ever
In delight I shall indulge myself never

-The Rolling Stones “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” – Karen Ullo

Congratulations to All the Winners and Many Thanks for those who participated!

And Happy Shakespeare Day!

p.s. I will be contacting the winners soon to find out where to send their prizes!

‘… Still With You.’

From the Armadio degli Argenti of Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), c. 1450

‘… I rose up and am still with you.’

Psalm 139: 18

‘… His Sepulchre Shall Be Glorious.’

From the Armadio degli Argenti of Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), c. 1450

In that day the root of Jesse, who stands for an ensign of the people, him the Gentiles shall beseech, and his sepulchre shall be glorious.’

Isaiah 11: 10

‘Let Him Not Lose What He So Dear Hath Bought.’

From Cell 25 of the Convent of San Marco, by Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), 15th Century

Think on the very làmentable pain,

Think on the piteous cross of woeful Christ,

Think on His blood beat out at every vein,

Think on His precious heart carvèd in twain,

Think how for thy redemption all was wrought:

Let Him not lose what He so dear hath bought.

–Pico della Mirandola (translated by St Thomas More)

‘… Wounded for Our Iniquities …’

From the Armadio degli Argenti of Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), c. 1450

‘… he was wounded for our iniquities, he was bruised for our sins….

Isaiah 53: 5

‘They Parted My Garments Amongst Them….’

From the Armadio degli Argenti of Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), c. 1450

‘They parted my garments amongst them; and upon my vesture they cast lots.’

Psalm 22: 19

‘… He Shall Be Led as a Sheep to the Slaughter …’

From the Armadio degli Argenti of Blessed John of Fiesole, OP (Fra Angelico), c. 1450

‘He was offered because it was his own will, and he opened not his mouth: he shall be led as a sheep to the slaughter, and shall be dumb as a lamb before his shearer, and he shall not open his mouth.’

Isaiah 53: 7