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Tue, Dec. 13th, 2005, 10:48 am
okelle: The Mother Witnesses the Execution of her Son's Killer

The Mother Witnesses the Execution of her Son's Killer

She lets out a sob when he dies. The man
who never admitted
that he killed the boy she carried
inside her body, little womb, tiny penis growing,
uncurling like the inside of an egg
as it unfolds upon a frying pan.

She wanted this moment; she wanted
to see the man die
as he saw her son die,
wanted an eye for an eye,
a tooth for a tooth.
But the retribution of the state was bloodless
It was her right, and its duty.
He faded into nothingness, like a cat.
Her sob echoed
in the sterile air.

Frances Donovan
December 2005

Thu, Aug. 11th, 2005, 03:12 pm
okelle: (no subject)

The egrets touch down.
One calls from the roof above
To her hunting mate.

~ From Florida Keys

Wed, Jul. 6th, 2005, 10:46 pm
okelle: (no subject)

dialing your number
i stop
at the last digit

- Susan Kaup

Fri, Jun. 17th, 2005, 09:47 am
okelle: Counting the Dead

Counting the Dead

One is how it begins. And then, one
again, further over, by someone
else. Turning the body, a worker calls, This one’s
a child, while another says, This one’s a stone.
The living call for help carrying their reflections,
brushing the sand from the face of the one
whose body is a shelter of stone.

Feet gone, hands gone, clothes blown
open as a blister. The flies swarm as one
body, their eggs a score in a song
the dead didn’t count on
learning.

Keep in mind: the beetle is burrowing,
the cat is blind from the gorge, and the birds that circle
will not wait for evening. It should be clear
from how the dead fill the field that animals
need not go hungry. The sky thickens, the edge
of the forest fills, more on the way, and this is to be expected.
Each will begin with the body’s greatest softness,
each will begin with the first.

In the field, the counting goes on among the living. One,
and as an echo others answer: one.
Infinitely of the first and beginning again at one. This one
a woman, that one the aunt. One
multiplied is one, added is one
more, and missing, one again, but less.

Jennifer Boyden
Poets Against the War
http://www.poetsagainstwar.net/displaypoem.asp?AuthorID=24170

Fri, May. 27th, 2005, 11:34 am
okelle: Three Kinds of Food

Three Kinds of Food

Carnation Instant Breakfast—or rather,
a white box called Generic
with green letters and a tinny trickle
of while granules, just like laundry soap.
That was for the days we had no milk.

Once I made myself a sandwich
from a new loaf of bread,
ham, mustard, lettuce, a tomato sliced
just right. But when I bit
into it, I lost my appetite
and threw it away, uneaten.
Later, my mother brandished it,
one-bite guilty from the wastebasket, saying
is this what I work so hard for?

A roll of dimes
from her pocketbook,
scraping for spare change in the half-light
of the back seat
on the way to the babysitter.
I’d take my mother’s stolen labor to the store,
exchanging it for little bursts of sweetness.
At Emma’s front door—at Emma's green-lawned,
shiny-kettle door—I'd ply her
with the bright colors and the taste on the tongue—
at her front door, not invited in, we'd stand
and eat that precious cargo together.

Frances Donovan
October 2003

Mon, May. 23rd, 2005, 10:19 am
okelle: The Naming of Cats, by T.S. Eliot

The Naming of Cats is a difficult matter,
It isn't just one of your holiday games;
You may think at first I'm as mad as a hatter
When I tell you, a cat must have THREE DIFFERENT NAMES.
First of all, there's the name that the family use daily,
Such as Peter, Augustus, Alonzo or James,
Such as Victor or Jonathan, George or Bill Bailey--
All of them sensible everyday names.
There are fancier names if you think they sound sweeter,
Some for the gentlemen, some for the dames:
Such as Plato, Admetus, Electra, Demeter--
But all of them sensible everyday names.
But I tell you, a cat needs a name that's particular,
A name that's peculiar, and more dignified,
Else how can he keep up his tail perpendicular,
Or spread out his whiskers, or cherish his pride?
Of names of this kind, I can give you a quorum,
Such as Munkustrap, Quaxo, or Coricopat,
Such as Bombalurina, or else Jellylorum-
Names that never belong to more than one cat.
But above and beyond there's still one name left over,
And that is the name that you never will guess;
The name that no human research can discover--
But THE CAT HIMSELF KNOWS, and will never confess.
When you notice a cat in profound meditation,
The reason, I tell you, is always the same:
His mind is engaged in a rapt contemplation
Of the thought, of the thought, of the thought of his name:
His ineffable effable
Effanineffable
Deep and inscrutable singular Name.

- T.S. Eliot
The Naming of Cats
Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats

Tue, May. 10th, 2005, 09:58 pm
okelle: New Moon Lover

Hekate hid her face.
On hands and knees,
I threw you to the ground and kissed you.
You made a moan
and worshipped at my hips all evening.
You sang my praises. I glowed.

On Monday, women brought you food in flying machines.
You unpacked your suitcase in a city I've never seen.
My own bed swelled. I was an island.

Now, Artemis rides her chariot.
Her bows hangs luminous, purposeful, above the trees.
She's calling her maidens to the hunt.
But something was born in the dark of the moon.
Dreaming of you,
I lost my sisters in the forest.

Frances Donovan
March, 1997
The Garden of Words

Mon, May. 9th, 2005, 10:45 pm
okelle: The Great Figure

Among the rain
and the lights
I saw the figure 5
in gold
on a red
fire truck
moving
tense
unheeded
to gong clangs
siren howls
and wheels rumbling
through the dark city

- William Carlos Williams
Sour Grapes: A Book of Poems

View the painting inspired by the poem here:
http://www.wisdomportal.com/Christmas/Figure5InGold.html