Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Volume I, Issue IV.

September 15, 2011
The Ides of March Journal


September 15, 2008: 
Lehman Brothers, a world leader
in investment finances, declares bankruptcy. 
Shit hits the fan.

Featured in this issue:

Art Baker
     ---"August 6, 1945"
    ---"Atlantis"
Jerome Brooke
    ---"Hail Caesar"
    ---"Ride of the Valkyries"
Clarence Dearborn
    ---"Jackson"
    ---"Kennedy"
    ---"Washington"
Jamie Lee Kirtz
    ---"Ah! The Witches! They are Coming! (The Trial of Martha Carrier--Salem)"
Julie Laws
    ---"Hannibals' Elephants"
    ---"Hades"
P.D. Lyons
    ---"Tattoo on Leaving Gettysburg"
    ---"King Laoghaire"
Megan Peterson
    ---"300"
    ---"Andrew Carnegie: Villain or Victim?"
Mark Young
    ---"Oh, High Fly the Flag"

**

"August 6, 1945"
---Art Baker

              The Gadget
       blew the world in two
crisped our skin to dust and dirt.
               Humanity
                  makes
                    for
         humanity to hurt.

**

"Atlantis"
---Art Baker

They say she stretched
across the ocean, touching
America, kissing Europe.

But the jealous ocean seized her,
sweet beauty, jeweled lady,
ravaged her with fearsome waves, pulling
her down,
               down,
                        down
      beneath him,
leaving nothing but a schoolboy myth
and her name
on the tips of the tongues
of her far-ago lovers.

**

"Hail Caesar"
---Jerome Brooke

Gladiators file, one by one, all in mail,
Hail Caesar!
We who are about to die, doomed,
Salute thee!

Paired together, brothers in arms, glory we seek,
Death we defy, and disdain all fear.
Dance of death, in silence, sword against trident,
We circle, then do come near.

Hail Caesar, master of the world,
your command we await.

**

"Ride of the Valkyries"
---Jerome Brooks

Storm clouds gather, in the north sky, thunderbolts flash;
Shieldmaidens ride forth.
Fallen warriors do lie, slain on the field, brave warriors,
under the sky of the north.

Men who did die, with a sword in their hands, now summoned this day,
To the rainbow trail.
Now are carried they, on the steeds of the Valkyries, maids fair of face,
With coats of mail.

Each night to feast, and drink horns of mead, bounty of All Father,
His name, writ in runes, we dare not say.
Fair maidens are carried, taken to paneled booths, prize of valor;
All await the last battle, on the final day.

**

"Jackson"
---Clarence Dearborn

"Old Hickory" Jackson
hated the Indian Nation.
He made a law
to move them all
out west to Reservations.

**

"Kennedy"
---Clarence Dearborn

'Tween Kruschev and the moon,
John's world was all a-swoon.
So Marilyn Monroe
and he would go
and rocket around the room.

**

"Washington"
---Clarence Dearborn

As general, he was not
generally worth a snot.
Maybe exceptin'
Saratoga and Trenton,
he got whipped a lot!

**

"Ah! The Witches! They are Coming! (The Trial of Martha Carrier--Salem)"
---Jamie Lee Kirtz

Her eyes black like spots on cows twitchin disturbed on dead grasses
acts of witchcraft crown hir head
them girls start to howl humming chests
unnatural necks twistin like circles drawn like spokes from all unsaw stares
chants by younge tounges like spells rasped by red starry eyes

Twinklin shadows rise from doores black
silty fields betwixt milke and graine
them saw black man at hir eare
spittin sweet and unsavoury curses
pinchin, prickin, poking harts and heads

Ropes snakin rownde bones wrists shakin them sit still
while hir arms bind to chair

**

"Hannibal's Elephants"
---Julie Laws

Dark leviathans
trumpet in snowy mountains.
Tusks gore bitter ice.

**

"Hades"
---Julie laws

Mold lord, sunless king,
twelve times shunned, pale of dark pools.
Keeper of Greek breaths. 

**

"Tattoo on Leaving Gettysburg"
---P.D. Lyons

For Stacy

The dead of Gettysburg reach out, soak us with desire.
Teaching us its tears that shape their ghosts.

Even down at the Blue Parrot,
Drinking Pennsylvania Porter and Jameson's
We find ourselves with them,

And at the motel
Phone ringing with 2am complaints,
Does not stop us the living from honouring the dead.

In the morning Stacy's Chrome Garden
Soft hum needles lullaby beneath my skin,

Winged horses form a few more drops of blood for Gettysburg
While you, holding my hand as if in hospital
Think of ways to further delay our leaving

Because like me you crave the company of ghosts
And too you know the need the dead have for healing.

**

"King Laoghaire"
---P.D. Lyons

Let the high hill speak for me:
Those who look shall see,
Full regalia compared
With stones of destiny.
Those with memory
Shall know
Cruelty the old belief
Compare with loving points of Christianity.
Let the high hill speak for me:
Bishop or pagan disguise
Usurper, still by only lies
Once Bridgit discards such foreign shame--
Who stands high on Tara Hill again?

**

"300"
---Megan Peterson

The greatest warriors of all
and the story of how they fall:
ruled with mystics and superstition
difficult to deny or define,
open to sneaking and corruption.

True to the law they stay.
Only a few go, the best.
Falling to the enemies within,
down they go into the fray
to die with the rest.

Sparta didn't fall that day,
but it soon would.
For the corruption
they did pay.

**

"Andrew Carnegie: Villain or Victim?"
---Megan Peterson

Seen as a greedy industrialist by all,
except for the libraries he built.
The masses wanted to see him fall
in an era where intelligence began to wilt.
Up he came from nothing,
no credit to his name.
Taught himself everything,
worked up from the bottom for his fame.
Employed thousands of unskilled,
yet he was to blame.
Was he right,
or was might?

**

"Oh, High Fly the Flag"
---Mark Young

Steel bellies soared into ivory towers,
oh, high fly the flag.
All the world fell hushed for just a few hours,
oh, high fly the flag.
Rescue-men and firemen hollered and raced,
oh, high fly the flag.
The tainted air beat the blood in their face,
oh, high fly the flag.
The dust and the steel caught in their chests,
oh, high fly the flag.
In hospitals, those heroes have breathed their last,
oh, high fly the flag.
Their spirits were silenced. Asbestos and ire
slipped in their lungs when they raced to the fire.
Oh, high fly the flag.

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