poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary.

Month: March, 2016

A Bridge Out of Limbo

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& When you think of who you are,

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The deep waters rising about you, within you,

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& Within you, who you are, symbols embedded within & upon a book of code,

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Like a stamp or seal upon a document, & you swim through the hollow and the false,

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Bearing metaphorical code,

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& When you think of who you are and what you have delivered, you realize

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The brave are still within us,

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& Your metaphor is reality, holding fast to your sense of balance, carrying out your mission,

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& You never venture from your footing upon this precipice,

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& your children walk upon dry land.

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U.S. Naval Archives Photo # 80-G-238786: USS San Jacinto steaming with USS Lexington in the Mariana (Islands) area, 13 June 1944.

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My father was on active duty aboard the San Jacinto (foreground aircraft carrier) when this photo was taken. I remember him as a young man, remembering also transferred memories… physical and emotional, memories flowing like water. I was thinking about DNA as well as the memory within, and of, water. In the back of my mind I was thinking about Berta Cáceres. The work she did with water. Her radiant identification with Mother Earth, the Mothership, and the water running through Her veins.

Berta Caceres stands at the Gualcarque River in the Rio Blanco region of western Honduras where she, COPINH (the Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras) and the people of Rio Blanco have maintained a two year struggle to halt construction on the Agua Zarca Hydroelectric project, that poses grave threats to local environment, river and indigenous Lenca people from the region.green ball 6green ball 6green ball 6

I Knew It Was Over

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I knew it was over

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When she came home

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From work

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And said

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There’s a spoon

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In the sink.

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Images: Photographic still from director Nicholas Ray’s They Live By Night (1949), starring Farley Granger and Cathy O’Donnell and a detail from Piet Mondrian’s (1943) Broadway Boogie Woogie. 

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Marilyn Monroe reading James Joyce in a Public Park: Druidic and Bardic Powers of Enchantment

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Inspired poetry, regarded as a vital skill of the pagan Celtic seer, fits in with the shamanistic tenet that one must bring back any information gained from the Otherworlds to benefit the people.

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One challenge to this is that visions wildly pouring forth while in deep trance can easily be forgotten during the return to ordinary waking consciousness.

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They are much more likely to be retained and recalled for later use when placed in some sort of pattern which the cognitive mind can hold onto.

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Through the uses of rhyme, alliteration, meter, repetition and tune to this end, the crafts of music and poetry became intimately connected with magical practice and otherworldly power and knowledge in the Celtic world.

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Besides voicing deep and otherwise hidden wisdom gained while in an altered state, bards used sound to harm, heal, and alter moods and probability.

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Poetry and music were not considered beaux-arts to the pagan Celts, but tools of raw magical power.

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Scorching satirical poetry known as the briarmon smetrach was intended to ‘puncture’ and to publicly destroy reputations.

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Well-aimed, the poetic form known as glam dicin was used to drive out rats and to disfigure or even kill an opponent.

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The Irish cattle-rustling epic Tain bo Cualgne describes the bardic warfare employed by Queen Medb against her enemy Fer Diad:

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Then Medb sent the Druids and satirists and harsh bards for Fer Diad, that they might make against him three satires to stay him and three lampoons, and that they might raise on his face three blisters, shame, blemish and disgrace, so that he might die before the end of nine days if he did not succumb at once (Kinsella 1969).

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Bardic incantations could also be used to end hostilities. Diodorus Siculus observed this magical use of sound in the late 1st-century B.C.E.:

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Frequently when armies confront one another in line of battle with swords drawn and spears thrust forward, these men intervene and cause them to stop, just as though they were holding some wild animal spellbound with their chanting. (Diodorus Siculus 31, 2-5, as cited in Ireland, p. 181).

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Tacitus describes the effect of this weaving of enchantment against Roman invaders on the Isle of Mona in 60 A.D.:

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On the shore stood the opposing army with its dense array of armed warriors, while between the ranks dashed women in black attire round the Druids, lifting up their hands to heaven and pouring forth dreadful imprecations, scared our soldiers by the unfamiliar sight so that, as if their limbs were paralyzed, they stood motionless and exposed to wounds. (Tacitus, AnnalsXIV, 30)

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Finally, bardic powers could also be used to heal – as when a master harper restored speech to the dumb prince Maon through his music.

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The small harp was often employed by bards as a magical tool.

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Part of the Celtic harper’s toolkit was working knowledge of the Adbhan Trireach or ‘Three Noble Strains,’ attributed to the chants for childbirth sung by the god/spirit Dagda’s harp Uaithne.

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Each Strain was not only entertainment but a form of enchantment: ‘Sorrow-‘ or ‘Lament-Strain’, which could reduce listeners to tears; ‘Joy-Strain’, which could turn tears to laughter; and ‘Sleep-Strain’, which could soothe listeners’ hearts into deep sleep.

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Gaining songs of power from spirits is a common element occurring in many shamanistic cultures.

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 Text above from the section Druidic and Bardic Powers of Enchantment in Celtic Shamanism: Pagan Celtic Spirituality by Tina Fields, Ph.D https://indigenize.wordpress.com/about/spiritual-ecopsychology/celtic-shamanism/

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My digital manipulation of source material is intended for purposes of commentary & creative pastiche/creating a new work incorporated with original art & based upon Marilyn Monroe Reading Ulysses, Long Island, New York, 1954. Photo by Eve Arnold.

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Original photo by Eve Arnold as well as information about Marilyn Monroe’s reading habits and book collection can be found at http://www.booktryst.com/2010/10/marilyn-monroe-avid-reader-writer-book.html

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Morning Morning by Tuli Kupferberg

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Morning morning
Feel so lonesome in the morning
Morning morning
Morning brings me grief

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Sunshine and the sunshine
Sunshine laughs upon my face
& the glory of the growing
Puts me in my rotting place

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Evening evening
Feel so lonesome in the evening
Evening evening
Evening brings me grief

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Moon shine moon shine
Moon shine drugs the hills with grace
& the secret of the shining
Seeks to break my simple face

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Nighttime nighttime
Kills the blood upon my cheek
Nighttime nighttime
Does not bring me to relief

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Starshine and the starshine
Feel so loving in the starshine
Starshine starshine
Darling kiss me as I weep

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Morning Morning written by Tuli Kuferberg & recorded by The Fugs on their album The Fugs.

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The Fugs (1966) is the second album from The Fugs.

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Historical info & album downloads can be found at The Fugs official website: http://www.thefugs.com/history2.html

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Morning Morning by The Fugs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-dM8jpbaw3A

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I make no claim whatsoever to these lyrics, whose copyright, I assume, remains with the author & Fugs founding member, the late Tuli Kupferberg. I simply wish to share these beautiful words & music.

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Lyrics found at Lyrics.com as submitted by jinny.

z11morning morningmorning morningmorning morning