March 7, 1978: New York City
Possibly the most important day of my life was the day my one-way ticket took me to NYC. I didn’t know anybody or have anyting planned except that I decided to live there. I had a portable typewriter, a guitar, a backpack full of books, and a change of clothes. What little money I had was stolen from me the day I arrived. My mother had troubles of her own. I wasn’t going to ask her help. And I had broken with my father. I decided that I would either make it in New York or I would die. I made it in New York.
Relaunch in Honor, March 7, 2022
Without fanfare, but in honor of March 7, 1978, I’m re-commiting to this website. With the help of fellow students in A.M. Ruppel’s Elementary Sanskrit course at Yogic Studies, a clean, somewhat modernized version of Vaman Shivaram Apte “Appendix A: Sanskrit Prosody” from The Practical Sanskrit-English Dictionary will soon be posted on this site… but not by March 7.
I’ve written a lot of poetry in many styles. What’s been posted here was almost more random than random. Before the end of the day on March 7, 2022, I will post some garlands of poems. Most of them will be gestating narrative sketches about a character named Rhosonny, a name that despite a dactyl probably won’t last. I continue to call myself a poet, but give little to no evidence. This is what changes beginning on the seventh.
I’ve neglected this site for a decade. It used to be the only place aside from university libaries where you could find all three volumes of George Saintsbury’s History of English Prosody in both PDF and HTML Several university English Lit profs used to send their students to my site. But once google digitized it, there was no need for it here, so I rAemoved it. Now there’s even a Kindle version, but I don’t know the quality of it.
At about the same time, after several years of posting drafts of poems to my website, I also took the poems down. There was probably a plan that I don’t remember. The download was several hundred pages. I’ve added them all to Scrivener, but haven’t worked on them much. There are also new ones. But they will come later. For now, maybe a couple of my strangest old poems and some narrative sketches. But I’m now comitted to re-establishing a poetic presence on the web.
What then did you project
upon Persephone when you
saw her simply dressed in
flowing cloth that made her
seem more naked
Or was it Eurydice after all
Whom I saw descend into darkness
Wrapped in layers of bright light
And not Persephone as I had thought
A native of the Balkans, Himalayas,
and Southwest China, with vast forests
even now in Kyrgyzstan, the Ancient
Greeks took the Persian walnut from Iran
This cartel of cats, this “Cat 7,”
this parliament of robber barons,
gathering in an uneasy peace,
Ourania sends me ….
in a ship brimming with … gifts,
Seated by this shallow river
at what was its deep and mid point
Believing love comes only toward perfect beings,
I, knowing myself imperfect,
thought all who loved me fools
Or else myself a thief.
Sharp night on a body
my moon in the sheer night
the body in a clear moon
with brown buildings in white light
I am the key, the key button, action bracket,
Jack and let-off rail; sostenuto rod, ivory,
Back-check, hammer-rest and repetition lever
Morning, multiplex loam blooming
in round billows awash through mind;
Phæton tiding in cool dawn; as his wave
broadens its surge, its deep