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Sunday, August 24, 2014

George Held ---- Definitions

Five Willows Literary Review                                     George Held

Monostichs(from The New Devil’s Dictionary)

Banker One who invests other people’s money with an eye toward making it his own; formerly, a trusted priest of America’s most deeply revered god.

Commuter One who daily enriches himself in the city from which he nightly retreats to the suburb where he pays taxes.

Decency  After truth, the next casualty of war.

Doubt That which Americans no longer give their leaders the benefit of.

Faggot The gay gentleman who just left the room.

Failure Putting all your eggs in one basket and dropping it.

Global Warming Theory that CO2 emissions drive climate change, much disputed by Republican defenders of the status quo.

Honor What’s honored more in the breach than the observance.

Junk That which an airline safety inspector must keep his hands off; formerly, something useless that must be discarded.

NY Yankees Fan  Front runner; one who seeks gratification with minimal risk.

Palinite  A patriot who loves The Rapture more than homeland.

Poet laureate Abooster; one who applies Rotarian cheerleading to the dead art of poetry.

Politician A medium between taxation and representation, coveting one and finessing the other. See Janus, the two-faced demigod.

Remembrance For Proust, a medium for writing about times past; for lovers, a lock of hair to evoke visual, tactile, and olfactory memories.

Seasons 4 groups of 3 months each characterized by severe storms and irregular temperatures. See Global Warming.

Sex  What youth looks forward to and the aged look back on.

Sleep   v. A behavior that leads one to miss a deadline, be late for school or work, avoid sex;n. that which allows us perchance to dream or to simulate death.

Trump   v. To win a bridge trickby playing the highest card; n. an overbearing trickster who manipulates bankruptcy laws to stay afloat and fake a run for President.

TV News Anchor   A lip-reader paid to read aloud.

Keith Holyoak --- Nine Selections from the Collection The Gospel According to Judas

Keith Holyoak
Selections from “The Gospel According to Judas”


Judas, I judge you not
Until I plumb your heart
And grasp your deep desire
For that is who you are,
The seed that starts it all:
Desire becomes your will,
Your will becomes your deed,
Your deed your destiny.

OM shanti shantishanti

Top Ten of Infamy

Surfing the Internet today I hit
Upon a top-ten list of evil men
Through history. I checked the names on it,
Fearing I’d find my own. Idi Amin
And VladDraculrub shoulders there with Hitler;
Two spots reflect the glory that was Rome—
Caligula, teamed with Nero the fiddler.
Attila the Hun—he looks right at home.
Ivan the Terrible and Joseph Stalin
Made Russia quake; Pol Pot’s got hell to pay.
Tomás de Torquemada, holy Christian,
Surely deserves his own auto-da-fé.

“Top tens” are always slightly arbitrary—
King Leopold might well have made the list.
How many men did Alexander bury?
Genghis Khan and Mao were somehow missed.
Pope Urban II started the Crusades,
Jerusalem of course the best excuse;
The massacres by Christians on those raids
Helped reconcile the Muslims with the Jews.
And Judas? I don’t really fit the bill—
My deed was too allusive, far outdone
By those who relished multitudes to kill.
I never slew a man (worst case, just One).


      For those who wander
without a habitation
      I place the fixed stars
to mark your destination;

      For those who hunger
and thirst, unsatisfied,
      my banquet awaits
all guests who step inside.

      To those left weeping
alone in desolation
      I come with a smile
to join your celebration;

      To lions who walk
among the lambs in peace
      I send forth a child
so love and joy increase.

Songs of Mariam Magdala: Lovesick

Asleep at midnight, my heart is wide awake—
      beloved, I hear your knock!
He calls! “Beloved, my sister, my bride, open
      your garden and let me pick
Your orchard fruit, drink from your fountain flowing
      with honeyed milk and with nectar—
Already the night dew gathers upon my locks,
      bring me inside your shelter!”
Lying in bed the door is just out of reach—
      my garments are off, beloved—
My feet have been bathed, how could I rise and soil them,
      how stand before you naked?
Hearing him try the latch, I rise from bed
      and dip my fingers in myrrh;
In haste I reach for my gown, and drawing it on
      at once unbolt the door.
But oh! He has turned and gone into the night,
      gone, and my soul fails me.
My cry, “Beloved, my door has opened for you!”
      brings silence—nothing avails me—
The cobblestones are cold beneath my feet
      and no answer comes.
The watchmen find me searching through the city’s
      streets and catacombs;
They beat me, bruise me, rip away my veil,
      these watchmen of the walls.
I beseech you, daughters of Jerusalem,
      make him hear your calls!
Cry out, my sisters! Cast judgment as you will—
      approve or disapprove—
But seek my beloved! And when you find him tell him
      I am sick with love.

Sandy Hook

Riding the morning bus, they left behind
Mommies and Daddies, dolls and Thomas trains,
Dora the bold Explorer, trucks and planes,
Their talismans of home—the routine kind
Of schoolday bravery the world demands.
Cords holding children close must soon unravel;
We cannot guard all roads that they will travel,
Nor walk by them forever, holding hands.
But more is owed to innocents than this.
Though Judas learned a thing about betrayal
Gaping as Jesus writhed upon the cross
He never saw a prideful nation fail
To keep its children whole, to even miss
Its chance to be redeemed through shame and loss.

After Newtown

Citizens of this special nation
Mourn slain children in their fashion
With rituals that mark the slaughters—
After they bury sons and daughters
They curse the madman, not his gun,
And vow to God, “Never again!”
To help ensure this never happens
They print more automatic weapons
And pass them out so worshipers
All bear the arms their God confers
(For He has taught them guns are sacred
Instruments of love, not hatred).
A handgun with star-spangled holster
Is laid upon the highest altar
Where senators kneel down to pray.
Watching themgrievethis special way
Jesus cries out in holy rage
And Judas weeps below the stage.

after Mansur al-Hallaj

Born to the earth, I made my way
Back to the ocean whence I came,
Drawn as the moth that seeks the flame,
And fought the waves by night and day.

I punched the breakers—they struck me,
Left me half-broken on the sand,
Until the ocean lent a hand,
Lifted me up and set me free.

And now I do not cease to swim
Buoyed up sometimes on waves of love,
At times pressed under waves above,
While beacons on the shore grow dim.

Judas Unmasked

      Perhaps I was
the blight that killed the Rose,
      a stain across
the countenance of God—

      Or did I make
the perfect sacrifice,
      stab my own soul
so that the Lamb’s blood flowed;

      Or was I just
a small embellishment,
      picked out to play
an extra in a crowd?
      I was perhaps
a splash of ocean foam,
      a dying leaf,
a clump of broken sod.


Do not grieve overlong when I am gone,
Fearing that I have left you here alone.
The time for weeping ends; let tears be done.

Bow to the four directions—I am there.
I guide the sun, the moon, the morning star,
And catch the swallow falling from the air.

I am with you always, in the bead
Of dew upon the lotus, in the reed
Beside the lake, and in the mustard seed.