Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Volume 1, Issue 1. June 15, 2011.

The Ides of March


June 15, 1215:
King John of England signs the Magna Carta, 
placing himself and all future kings
within the law of the realm.


Featured in this issue:

-Zann Carter........................................"The Night John Lennon Died"
-Clarence Dearborn............................ "Vlad Tepes of Wallachia"
- ""......................................................"William Howard Taft"
-Jenna Kelly........................................"Apocalypse Now, or Maybe Later: Rapture 2011"
-Julie Laws.........................................."Caligula 'Invades' England: 40CE"
- ""......................................................"Salad for Hilter" 
-Mike Miller........................................"Isambard Kingdom Brunel. 1806-1859"
-Amit Parmessur.................................."Lord Shiva"
-Annie Perconti...................................."Uroboros"
- ""......................................................."Xochiquetzal"
-Megan Peterson.................................."Henry VIII"
- ""......................................................."Socrates, Dear Friend"
- ""......................................................."Catherine the Great of Russia (Who am I?)"
-Mark Young......................................."Enola Gay"
- ""......................................................."The Wright Brothers, December 17, 1903"

 * * *

"The Night John Lennon Died"
---Zann Carter

we were in a meeting,
all the servers and busboys squeezed
into that big-party corner booth.
who said it?  Sam? the bartender?
i only remember looking up in horror
and how the only other horror-filled eyes
were yours,
how our gazes locked, tractor beams colliding,
drawing us back and forth into each other’s shock--
what was the meeting about?
I only remember us fiercely hugging after,
going for pancakes,
how everywhere we wandered that night
how bereft the world felt
how his music played and played.  

 * * *

"Vlad Tepes of Wallachia" 
---Clarence Dearborn 

Oh, Impaler Vlad,
your enemies made you mad!
And so you would take 
some really big stakes
and skewer them in the nads! 

* * *

"William Howard Taft" 
---Clarence Dearborn

William Howard Taft
was large of fore and aft. 
So big was his gut 
he went and got stuck 
in the tub while taking a bath.

* * *

"Apocalypse Now, or Maybe Later: Rapture 2011"
---Jenna Kelly

Come one, come all,
it's going to be one hell of a show!
A rapture you'll never forget!
More hellfire, more fear,
fun for the whole family!
Four feisty apocalypse horses
for the petting zoo.
Adult swim in the lake of fire.
Save the date!
Tickets are going fast.
But don't worry,
if you miss out on the summer fun
there's always October.

 * * *

"Caligula 'Invades' England: 40CE" 
---Julie Laws

From Rome's hungry heart they marched. 
Caligula's army, the might of the Mediterranean, 
was charged to charge the island of England-- 
they halted at the Channel shore, ready for invasion, 

blood bursting in veins, swords sharpened for gore, 
thoughts of battle beckoned, fury-full, and-- 
"Aha!" cried Caligula. "Neptune will plead for pardon!" 
He then attacked the waves, cursing the fish,

and demanded that his army, 
the terrible legions of the Roman Empire, 
collect cockle shells off the beach
as tribute from the defeated water. 

Caligula was killed
shortly afterwards
by his own bodyguards.

* * * 

"Salad for Hitler" 
---Julie Laws

Adolf Hitler, whose voice spurred
the world into a war
which butchered fifty million bodies, 

whose policies massacred
over twenty million people
in undignified camps and ghettos

was a vegetarian
who could not abide
the slaughter of innocent animals.

* * *

"Isambard Kingdom Brunel. 1806-1859." 
---Mike Miller

 Can you draw out Leviathan with a hook,
 Or snare its tongue with a line which you lower?
Can you put a reed through its nose,
Or pierce its jaw with a hook?
--Job 41:1-2
 Brunel replied, “I have Leviathan
secured in my right hand.  I cast a line
upon the waters, and Great Eastern pulled
as some eight thousand horses snorting steam.
I forged the hook and anchor, and they lodged
inside her coal-dust craw.  Now I draw up
the chain and, ton by ton, I reel her in
to tame and train in dry-dock as I please.”
In stovepipe hat he puffed at his cigar
and thrust his hands beneath his crumpled vest,
this roughly-shaven fashioner of steel,
this crudely-fashioned fisherman of fate.
To him, if not the glory, then the power,
forever, and in iron’s name we pray,
Amen.  

* * * 


"Lord Shiva"
---Amit Parmessur

O Holy hermit on sacred Mount Kailash!
O Lord of 108 names, ardent lover of Benares,
indestructible city of eternal salvation!
It’s one of your fascinating secrets
the way you concocted Sanskrit
from the sacred sounds of a Damaru!
It’s one of your fascinating secrets
the way holy Ganges flows from your head!
It’s one of the most fascinating secrets
how you fearlessly drank the poison
that threatened to devastate the whole world!
Blessed with sons Ganesha and Kartikeya
and wife Parvati, the Supreme Deity of Shaktism,
you have no form and yet all forms are yours!

* * *

"Uroboros"
---Annie Perconti

Underneath suffocating skin-
Reborn once again-circling with
Open mouth-tail on tongue-
Biting the body, slaying the self-
Opened at last in death- I am
Returned whole-Eternal Unity
One with the True Self
Serpent of the Soul. 

* * *

                     "Xochiquetzal"
                ---Annie Perconti

                      Goddess
                   Sacred, Eternal
         Charming, Dazzling, Alluring
Lover of All things Bright and Beautiful
      Everlasting, Entrancing, Enduring
              Numinous, Wondrous
                         Divinity  

* * *

"Henry VIII" 
---Megan Peterson

All I needed was a boy,
an heir who would live.
Her looks were inviting and coy,
and the curves of her body
showed what she could give.

I am looked at oddly,
but what do I do?
I need someone to produce—
this is not out of the blue.
Shame this girl isn’t loose,
so my only option remains…

This is to save the throne.
Otherwise, who would lead?
Who would take the reins?
I cannot leave the crown alone.

* * *

"Socrates, Dear Friend (Plato's Lament)"
---Megan Peterson

Day after day I followed,
observing and recording you.
You asked difficult questions,
like why respect was owed.
I loved what you chose to do,
and what I gained from lessons.

For this you went to trial.
We heard the argument
and watched them spit bile.
You just let them vent
but you lost in the end.
Farewell, teacher and friend.

* * *

"Who Am I? (Catherine the Great of Russia)"
---Megan Peterson

I was brought in from Germany,
to marry a man who I despised.
And it’s difficult to produce an heir
with a manchild who doesn’t want any…
After a short time I realized
the measures I may have to take
to bring a child to bear.

Nine months later, my job was done,
and the Tsar’s actions—no longer fake.
I now knew what I must do next…
I let the royal guards have their fun.
Apparently hemorrhoids were the cause of death.
And my life moved to the stuff of historical text.
But of course I won’t hold my breath…
but do you know me?  

* * *

"Enola Gay" 
---Mark Young

I steadied my mother
as we flew through her labor. 
Her delivery room
was clear, open sky, and her womb 
was a welded steel darkness. 
The doctors--the navigator, the bombardier-- 
measured the moment of arrival, 
and her brothers--Necessary Evil, The Great Artiste-- 
watched. 

The doctors dropped 
the baby.
Little Boy whistled 
as he plummeted. 
Her brothers took notes
as his fiery blood scorched Heaven.

* * *

"The Wright Brothers, December 17, 1903"
---Mark Young 

Sun
stares.

                                                            Orville 
                                                           flies at the sky. 

           Wilbur jubilates. 
KittyHawk KittyHawk KittyHawk KittyHawk KittyHawk KittyHawk.

* * *










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