Thursday, January 19, 2012

Upcoming Book Review: Jason McCall's "Silver"

My mailbox was bombarded by Norse-tinged awesomeness today with the delivery of Silver, a poetry compilation by Ides-contributor Jason McCall. There's what looks like a Valkyrie on the front and an index of terms in the back for those uninitiated into the realm of Norse bards and badasses. I'm excited.

There'll be a book review up at some point--don't rush the editor, or the editor will rush you with a longsword.

Thanks to Mr. McCall for this opportunity! I'm looking forward to this with great anticipation.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Volume I. Issue VIII.

The Ides of March 
January 15, 2012 

 
 January 15, 2001: 
Wikipedia, a collaborative 
research website, is launched. 
High school teachers scream in horror. 

Featured in this issue: 

Bri Angleton-Stannish
    --- "Moloch"
    --- "Minotaur"
Art Baker
    ---"The Trail of Tears"
Jerome Brooke: 
    --- "Ships Asail" 
    --- "Under the Yoke"
Clarence Dearborn:
    --- "Lady Godiva"
Harold Guth:
    --- "John Henry"
    --- "Joe Magarac"
Nathan Hinote:
    --- "Snipe Hunting: The Night Dad Left"
Daniel Hite
    --- "End of The World (For Howard Camping)"
Julie Laws:
    --- "The White House Slaves"
Amit Parmessur:
    --- "Ganesh Chathurti Girl" 
    --- "The Monkey King"
Mark Young
    --- "1969"
    --- "Khrushchev's Shoe" 

**

"Moloch"
---Bri Angleton-Stannish

Black bones, metal hands.
Orange licking flesh, blood gift.
Small hands seared by flame.

**

"Minotaur"
---Bri Angleton-Stannish

Lonely.
      Hungry.
Wait...
      He comes
bright boy
      through the dark
sword-fingered
      to end
my loneliness
      one way
or
      another.
Theseus,
      bearer of string,
how smoothly you creep.

**

"The Trail of Tears"
---Art Baker

Walk.

Swamp-trees sway in unsavory winds. Blood flies
from a jaw broken by a white soldier's fist.

Like the slaughtered buffalo, the dead are left
where the grass and mud claims them.
The bodies boil
with flies.

Walk.

Choctaw and Cherokee,
Seminoles. Chickasaws.
The Creek.

The green is drained from their eyes. Wide, desert
lands now wait for them and their children.

Walk.

**

"Ships Asail" 
---Jerome Brooke 

Three ships we saw, on the sea, and we did smile. 
That we did see them. 
Like birds, white wings, carried by the gale, 
All on the dark sea. 

Ships, filled with wonders, and crewed by gods, 
we did await.
On the white sands, we gathered, to bid them welcome, 
And open the gate. 

Men encased in metal, with long knives bright, 
Did stride ashore. 
They did not smile, or join our feast, 
what did they seek more?  

** 

"Under the Yoke" 
---Jerome Brooke 

Tyre is fallen, her warriors brave, before her gates do lie, 
Her women serve as slaves, of the barbarian band. 
Under the yoke, the captives do pass, before the king, 
for him all do sing. 

Mighty warriors, laid low, their mail now the spoil of battle, 
captives devoid of pride. 
Men march, to the pens for slaves, or to the axe of death, 
from fate, they cannot hide. 

From the city rise the screams of women, 
sounding clear. 
Warriors shamed, their pride forgot, stumble on, 
honor no longer dear. 

**

"Lady Godiva"
---Clarence Dearborn

To ease her land of her husband's tax,
Lady Godiva bared her ass.
Through Coventry town she rode, skin bare,
with naught to cover her tits but her hair.
Oh, what a day! Oh, what an hour!
To see the pure form of the Earl's own flower!

**

"John Henry"
---Harold Guth

Drive
it down between steel and earth.
Swing
thirty pounds of dirty metal.
It ain't hard,
but what machine knows when to tap
or when to hammer?
To lay track parallel to the horizon,
or how to dig and dynamite
holes in mountains for iron horses to run?
That machine may run on steam,
but I, I
run on blood
and brains.

**

"Joe Magarac"
---Harold Guth

He sprang out of an ore-vein
like Athena from the head of Zeus,
full-formed. Steely skin, eyes of rust,
hair of copper coils, a man of metal clanking
with miners in the tunnels, hauling
slag with steel workers in the blast furnaces
of Ohio.
When the workers
need an extra hand,
Joe Magarac will heave his steel body
from his mine
and face the furnaces again.

**

"Snipe Hunting: The Night Dad Left"
---Nathan Hinote

Get to looking, kid.
This corn grows faster than you.
Find me when you're done.

**

"End of The World (For Howard Camping)"
---Daniel Hite

May twenty-first flew right on by
without any people disappearing into the sky.
And October, well, it came and went
but the world didn't receive so much as a dent.
But I wasn't surprised. No, not at all.
How could I be, after Y2K's fall?
Or how about the year 1982,
when Roberston said Jesus would come for me and you?
Nostradamus' 1999 comet-strike never came to be.
Neither did the New Jerusalem of 1533.
So to those who say the world will soon belly-up,
I politely reply, "Kindly shut the fuck up."

**

"The White House Slaves"
---Julie Laws

Often I've heard of Dolly Madison's courageous act:
when the British burned the White House
in the war of 1812, she,
the president's wife, was said to save
from the inferno a portrait of George Washington.

But it is now known that is was not her who did the saving:
two White House slaves
scaled a scaffold
and seized the painting, emancipating
the slave owner's portrait--but this rescue would not

be credited to them
until they
had been dead
for many years.

**

"Ganesh Chathurti Girl" 
---Amit Parmessur 

Solemn bindi beaming with new oomph-- 
on her lovely lips are legends that 
may resurrect a whole dead civilization. 
Her flowing, fragrant hair 
might instruct cascades how to commit
suicide safely down the loftiest cliff. 
Her hourlgass figure is timeless. 
With bright bangles poised to melt 
the eyes of kings, she neither 
has form nor is without form. 
O Lord Ganesha, thank you for adorning 
this purple doll in that impeccable kashti, 
in which she has captured peaceful, 
friendly waves of Krishna River. 
She's pure Maharashtra magic! 

** 

"The Monkey King" 
---Amit Parmessur 

He is powerful, as the wind. 
He is intelligent, illustrious and an inventor. 
There's nothing that is too difficult for him; 
whenever stuck, he is the one who can help. 

I heard, as a child, he believed the sun 
to be a ripe mango and pursued it to eat it. 
A permanent mark was left
on his chin by the angry Indra's thunderbolt! 

I love the way he defied demon king Ravana, 
how he burnt Lanka with his flaming tail. 
I admire how he let an arrow
with Rama's name on it pierce his leg. 

O Hanuman, ardent devotee of Rama; 
O Lord with 28 transcendental divine opulences, 
you are my mightiest monkey, of all pantheons!

**

"1969"
---Mark Young

Mankind flew, a white ghost
into the darkness
hanging over our heads.

And, for a moment,
all the troubles and hopes
of the world

were no larger
than a moon rock
held up

to the dark of space.

**

"Khrushchev's Shoe"

Khrushchev's shoe,
to me and you,
is a symbol of tension and anger.

But maybe his banging
was just his way of saying
that toejam is a real danger.

**